Is it time to do a deload week?

Woman doing weighted bar exercises.

Is it time to do a deload week?

Deload week

It is common knowledge that we exercise to improve our physical and mental health. We achieve these goals through a variety of training methods.

One of the important characteristics of a training program is the TRAINING LOAD. In essence, training load is determined by the frequency, duration and intensity of your workouts.

Whilst it’s important to stimulate muscles with overload and allow them to adapt to increased loads, ongoing exposure to increased loads can predispose you to injury. For more information on overload injuries, have a look at our handy blogs on overuse injuries!

What exercising deloading is all about.

An increasingly popular aspect of training programs currently is a “deload week”. As the name suggests, this is a period whereby you still exercise, but with a reduced load compared to your previous weeks. The load adjustment can be performed with reductions in either frequency, duration and intensity, or a combination of these factors.

Recent evidence suggests that including a deload week with your training cycle is effective in reducing chronic maladaptive adaptations. This is while also improving subsequent strength gains and muscular endurance. Whilst it seems counterproductive initially to reduce your load in order to improve strengthening, it’s important to remember that rest and recovery are just as important to your training schedule.

When is it time to deload from exercise?

So, when is it time to do a deload week? Following a common training program, often a deload week is programmed in around the 4th-5th week. However, this is a rough estimate, and your body will give you signs to signal it needs a deload week. These signs can include ongoing fatigue or reduced time to fatigue. Also inability to perform at the same intensity constantly, and residual pain or discomfort following exercise. It is always essential to listen your body during exercise; it will often tell you things that you weren’t aware yourself!

If you have any questions about a deload week, or you feel that you’re suffering from some form of overuse injury, book online or call us on 07 3352 5116 to see one of our physiotherapists today!

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