This means to be able to do more and more over time but changing up the variables such as the amount of weight you can lift, this gradually increases the more often you practise or increase of reps and sets and reduce rest time or increasing your range of motion during a specific move too, over time you are able to get a better range, another one is frequency of training….You may start off by training once or twice a week but over time your body can cope with more until you are training say 6 times a week for example.
This is what Progressive Overload is, if you can achieve any of the above over time then you know you have truly progressed.
You see a lot of people quite often over complicate their training but truly all you have to do is keep things simple and stay consistent. Gradually add to your training to keep the body challenged but stick to a program, it could be strength training, endurance training or hypothrophy for example. If you keep it simple and build on your workouts over time, its easier to measure progress.
Equally if you go to the gym, or do home workouts and do the same workout every time without increasing the weights or the reps or reducing the rest time, you will never improve. The key thing is to keep challenging the body, put your muscles under pressure, keep challenging yourself because if you don’t you will not see the results.
Once you stay in your comfort zone, you are no longer challenging yourself, you plateau!
Depending on what your goals are, what you want to achieve will be the deciding factor in which type of overload will best work for you. If your main focus is to lift heavier, then your focus is increasing your weights and frequency of training. If your goal is fitter and faster you may have a focus on reduced rest between sets, increase reps etc. My point is you wouldn’t want to focus on all of this at any one time, some styles will work best and compliment your style of training and that is what you should be focusing on. You can research this on the web or cut that part out and get a pt.
The best way to see results is to have a workout plan, designed for your goals. Put together a weekly planner so you stay on track and each week add something to the plan so you are always challenging the body, this will give you progress over time, stay consistent with it and you will see the results.