So you're working out but you're not getting the results you're after? Or you've hit a plateau? Read on to discover three reasons why it's not working.

Why you aren't getting the results you're after - Women's Health and Fitness magazine




If your goals include toning and muscle strength, favour resistance training and tweak your moves to progressively overload your routine. This means increasing the angle of the movement and concentrating on the eccentric range of the motion instead of the concentric. Other upgrades include adjusting the weight, altering your repetitions or sets or mixing up the tempo. Consider a weekly split workout where different muscle groups are targeted on different days. Resist making multiple changes at once.  “If you constantly lift the same weights within the same rep range and same tempos (speed), your body will use less and less calories to perform the exercise,” says strength and conditioning coach Alice Round. “Fat loss has been shown to be enhanced by exercises performed from 45 to 60 seconds, tapping into both the aerobic and anaerobic energy systems,” Round says. “Rather than going for reps, time your exercises or change the tempo so lifts in the eight-to-10 rep range adhere to a three-second eccentric movement and two-second concentric movement to total five seconds. For 12 reps, count two seconds for eccentric and one for concentric. “It comes down to time under tension,” Round says. Try partitioning your regimen into three-to-four-week blocks and work through these line-ups.


If cardio is your go-to, introduce variety by mixing in new classes and alternate cross-trainer sessions with interval training. Poorly designed training programs or monotonous routines are a recipe for plateaus. Long-term improvements and changes in muscle tone and body shape as well as muscular strength, endurance and cardiovascular fitness demand training in a way that forces your body to respond to new challenges. 


It’s the most tantalising of logic, but exercising harder or dieting more won't get you to a weight loss goal faster. Worse, trying to cheat the system can set you up for rebound weight gain to equal or surpass the amount you lose on a fad health kick. 

“All that happens with the biggest eat-less-do-more deficit is that you lose more in the initial six months, but it’s regained more rapidly,” says nutritionist and obesity researcher Zoe Harcombe. “Then you’ll likely gain more on top than the person who lost less. The bigger the fall, the bigger the bounce back.

Want to learn more about overcoming plateaus? Here are 7 plateau-busting fitness tips.