Working Out and Not Seeing Results. This May Be Why.

Working Out and Not Seeing Results. This May Be Why.

If you’re working out consistently, but not seeing results like gains in speed, endurance or strength, it can be a frustrating experience. But before you beat yourself up about it — or, far worse, throw in the towel on your routine completely, know that a few factors could be to blame.

Often, it comes down to either working too hard — or not hard enough.

“[This] nearly always comes back to workout intensity and rest,” Anthony Baugh, a NASM-certified personal trainer at Independent Training Spot in NYC recently told Women’s Health magazine.

Working out and not seeing results is frustrating. This may be why.

You’re not recovering.

Rest and recovery are just as key to your routine as your workouts. If you’re not giving your body enough time — plus the appropriate tools — to bounce back after the stress of a hard workout, your results can suffer. The same goes for specific workouts, too. In a high-intensity interval workout, shortening the time between hard bursts can seem like a good idea, but can actually derail the aim of the exercise.

“Not getting enough rest between intervals can be a huge detriment to your workouts,” says Baugh. “After a hard push, either take a short static rest or active rest, like a light jog or walk. This is so your body can recover enough to repeat the intensity of the work interval.”

man workout rest not seeing results

You’re not pushing yourself hard enough.

At the same time, if you’re not pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone, you also aren’t likely to see results.

Prevention magazine recently reported:

“’It doesn’t matter how many times a week you exercise or how consistent you are, if you’re not challenging yourself in your workouts, you’re not going to build muscle,’ according to Shaun Zetlin, a personal trainer in New York City.

“[He] recommends lifting a weight you can handle for 6 out of 8 reps, with the final 2 reps being extremely challenging to lift. Do 3 sets of each exercise you do like this, resting 90 seconds at most between sets.”

Working with a trainer who can help you incorporate heavy weights and varied sets and reps patterns can help you get to where you want to be.

You’re not eating enough.

When the focus is weight loss or maintaining weight, many exercisers may not be including the types — or amounts — of foods appropriate for building muscles. Yes, this means protein (though there are concerns about some individuals consuming too much, typically through shakes and other supplements). But muscles need carbs, too. Some research has shown that fast-acting carbs immediately after a strength workout can help with such gains.

Your muscles aren’t firing.

A lack of results could be due to not only to volume and intensity, but also execution. If you’re running or squatting without “firing” your glutes — i.e., using the muscle correctly — you’re not going to get results, and may be putting yourself at risk for injuries. A physical therapist or trainer can help you diagnose rather quickly whether this is your issue.

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