Whether you’ve been going back-to-back with MWU Programs or you're close to wrapping up our 6-Week EVOLVE Challenge, you may notice you’re starting to feel a little fatigued, that your energy levels are a little lower than what they were at the start of your Program and/or Challenge and that you’re struggling to find the motivation to push yourself during your workouts.
We’re here to let you know that these feelings you may be experiencing are normal and more than likely to occur, particularly when completing strength training for several months on end.
Strength training is demanding and places a lot of stress on your muscles, joints and body, that’s why we strongly encourage our MWU clients to incorporate a deload week to help facilitate rest and recovery, so that your body can repair and strengthen for better long-term performance.
If you’ve completed our 8-Week Strong Program, it’s likely that you’re familiar with our deload phase, which occurs at the end of your 8-week program to help facilitate recovery and give your body and mind a much deserved break. So for those of you, who are new to incorporating a deload week, let’s break it down and dive into our tips on how to introduce a deload phase into your fitness regime.
What is a Deload Week & How Do I Incorporate into my fitness regime?
We trust you’ve been working extremely hard and pushing yourselves in your training, so the thought of resting and reducing your load may seem a little uncomfortable to you right now.
Typically, a deload phase will range from 1-2 weeks and is incorporated into strength training programs every 2-4 weeks to assist in recovery.
We’re not saying you have to give up your training entirely during your deload week, but we’re strongly encouraging you to reduce the intensity, volume and frequency to allow your body to rest. By making slight adjustments such as:
- Lifting lighter weights
- Reducing the volume with less sets, or less exercises incorporated into your workouts
- Exercising less frequently (eg: dropping to 3-4 training days and dedicating the remainder of the week to active rest)
- Or moving your body with light to moderate activities such as yoga, pilates, dance classes, bike rides and/or long walks.
Not only will you do your body a huge favour, but the incorporation of a deload week also allows your mind, muscles, joints, connective tissues and hormones to rest, recover and refresh so that you can train harder, stronger and better in the long run.
In one of our most recent blog posts, 'How to Avoid Workout Burnout', we highlight just how important it is to be in tune with your body, particularly when it comes to recognising the signs of fatigue and overtraining.
We highly recommend giving this blog a read as it reinforces the importance of incorporating a deload week, listening to your body and trusting the process.
Still not certain on incorporating a Deload week?
We know that our MWU community is incredibly hard-working and driven, but it’s actually ok to take a break from training.
A Program or a Challenge is a big fitness event to take on, and it’s important to not let yourself burnout.
If you’re approaching the end of your 2nd or 3rd MWU Program in a row or about to wrap up the EVOLVE Challenge, now’s the time to check in with yourself to see whether it’s time to slow down and consider incorporating a deload week.
As we’ve mentioned above, it’s only going to do you good and you’ll find you’ll feel refreshed and energised when you return to your training in the weeks to come.
So what does this mean for our EVOLVE Challengers?
As we head into our final few days of the EVOLVE Challenge, we encourage you to be mindful of how you’re feeling.
The great thing about the EVOLVE Challenge is that you have access to the Mobility training style.
On the other hand, you can continue with your preferred training style and incorporate the tips listed above to reduce the intensity, frequency and volume of your training.
If you're looking to modify the number of days you train, you can do so by following this guide.
Another option and this goes for our MWU Program Clientele too, is to tap into the MWU Exclusive Content. Here you’ll find live workouts from our MWU Coaches as well as, pilates workouts for those interested in completing light-moderate activity.
If you’d like more information, particularly around incorporating a deload week and how it impacts your nutrition, we highly recommend checking out this article.
If you require further support and assistance, you can always contact our amazing MWU Customer Support team.