If you've been coached by me before, you'll already know this term very well - because I'm basically talking about it in every coaching session and every email.
Essentially, progressive overload is the act of progressively accomplishing MORE in each workout than the one before. It's one of the most important components of any good training program and a great way to measure whether you're actually building any muscle over a period of time.
You can incorporate progressive overload into your routine by:
CHOOSING A HEAVIER WEIGHT
If you've been pushing the same weight each week, it's time to lift a bit heavier (while keeping your reps the same!).
PUSHING PAST YOUR CURRENT REP COUNT
Do you find yourself constantly training at 12-15 reps? Time to switch it up, sista! Try training at a lower rep range with heavier weights, or tack on a few more reps to your current routine without switching your weights.
DECREASING YOUR OVERALL REST TIME
This ensures that your HR doesn't drop too low in between sets, which is great if you want to burn as many calories as possible in as short a period of time. (But, not ideal if your goal is strength & performance!)
ADVANCING YOUR MOVES
If you've been comfortable with the same movements for a while, it's time to level up! Try single arm or leg movements instead of their double counterparts, or incorporate a balance/stability component that challenges your core at the same time.
BURNING MORE CALORIES
Something as simple as waking up earlier, reaching a larger step goal or just being more active throughout the day can help with this. If your goal is fat loss, then progressively burning more calories each week is one of the best ways to achieve your goal.
Ultimately, the goal with progressive overload is to constantly try to make the BIGGEST IMPACT on your physical fitness - so that you can track how hard you've worked (and the incredible changes you've made!) over time when you really put your mind to it.