Going slowly is hard for me.
I may be the most impatient person alive.
In the past I’ve focused the Work It Out series on changing up how you perform the exercise. All-new workouts are great, but that’s not your only option for continuing to make progress and ensuring you don’t plateau.
You can get an incredible burn from moves you’ve been doing for months! All you need to do is take one of your existing routines and apply a new approach.
Here are some of my favorite ways to shake up moves you’re probably already familiar with:
Today I have one more to add. You can thank my trainer for reminding me of this little
Super Slow Sets
Were you wondering where the patience part from the beginning of the post would come in? I am one who prefers to go hard throughout a workout. Slowing it down is sometimes more of a challenge for me than performing the actual slow set!
What are they?
Slow sets are all about control and contraction. To perform these, you will want to use a lighter weight than normal. You will be doing the same number of reps as you usually, do but your muscles are under strain for a much longer time due to a slower cadence.
You will be completing each rep using a 1-2-3 count. Remember grade school when you counted 1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi, 3 Mississippi? Do that on the way up.
The idea is that going super slow allows more blood to flow to the targeted muscle. It uses slow-twitch muscle fibers, which are normally missed during faster lifting (that hits fast-twitch muscle fibers). This results in strength gains.
Where do I use Super Slow Reps?
Super Slow Sets can be applied to most exercises. A good starting point for any of these is doing 3 sets of 8-10 reps.
Here are a few of my love-to-hate-them favorites. Click the links below for a written explanation of each move.
Never, ever lock your knees while doing these!
This also works well with dumbbell curls.
Try these with both wide and close grips!
If you can do these unassisted… I am truly impressed. Please send video.
To make these easier, spread your feet wider or simply go “girl” push-ups (on your knees).
Warning: When you first start using super slow sets (or any new technique), don’t be surprised if you are more sore the day after. This is a result of the neuromuscular adaptations in the body, which usually create the greatest degree of muscular soreness.
This is not something you want to apply to every workout you do. These, like the others listed, are meant to be done for a short period of time to help boost you through a plateau.
***The Disclaimer: I’m not a certified professional anything. Use common sense. If it hurts, stop. You will see results, but only if you are consistent, relentless, and patient. ***
I’m back down to 4 rather than 5 sets this week. It’s like heaven. I’ll never complain about 4 again!
Did anyone try last week’s Chest and Bicep workout?
Have you ever hit a plateau? How did you get through it?