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Beauty talk with cover model Claudia Jovanovski

We chat to March 2017 cover model Claudia Jovanovski about her beauty regime and lifestyle.

On looking camera ready year round 

When I think about my feelings in relation to my day-to-day appearance and having to be photo shoot ready at a moment’s notice, I don’t feel anxious or stressed as you might expect. Clean eating and being active is a lifestyle for me. When I receive a request to participate in a photo shoot, my immediate response is excitement and happiness. I love being in front of the camera, working with photographers, and the opportunity to discuss some of the topics closest to my heart such as fitness and nutrition.

On morning rituals

Step 1. Hydrate I love to start my mornings with a tall glass of water and occasionally a fresh coconut. This helps rehydrate the body after eight hours without liquid, flush the body of toxins, and boost your metabolism. Dehydrated skin can appear dull, dry and is more prone to breakouts.

Step 2. Cleanse I cleanse my skin every morning, rinse my face with lukewarm water and then gently pat my face dry with a facecloth. This always makes me feel refreshed and helps remove any excess oils, make up residue, dead skin cells and toxins the body has eliminated overnight.

Step 3. Hydration serum To help hydrate, nourish and brighten my skin.

Step 4. Moisturize and protect I use a sun cream with a SPF 50, which moisturises and gives my skin a gentle glow. SPF is essential for those who wish to protect their skin from premature aging, developing wrinkles, facial brown spots and skin discoloration. Don’t forget your lips, hands, neck and eyes.

On evening rituals

Step 1. Cleanse I cleanse my skin, rinse my face with lukewarm water and then gently pat my face dry with a facecloth. To remove any make up and clean skin.

Step 2. Night cream To help hydrate and nourish

Step 3. Eye cream This is important as the skin around the eyes is delicate and often ages faster than other areas of the face. 

On daytime make-up

As I live an active lifestyle and am always on the go, my day-to-day look is very natural. I like to keep it simple only emphasising my eyes with some bold black mascara. 

On favourite trends 

Balayage hair. It is a low maintenance hair option that highlights the ends of your hair and creates a natural-looking gradient from dark to light. 

On beauty mistakes

Instead of applying one coat of mascara, I would apply multiple layers without letting it dry in between each coat. As a result I ended up with clumpy spider-leg mascara. I also regret getting too excited with my bronzer. I would cover my entire face with bronzer, which made my face look darker than the rest of my body, instead of giving me a beautiful sun-kissed look. Oops! 

On beauty epiphanies

Use a concealer one or two shades lighter than your skin tone under your eyes. This will draw attention to your eyes and help cover any dark bags. For bronzer, apply to parts of the face that would naturally get sun to make the bronzer look more natural. Apply bronzer on cheekbones, jawline, and upper forehead as if you were drawing the number three on each side of your face. Apply blush before your concealer to make it look as if the colour is naturally coming from beneath the skin.

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Beauty talk with cover model Claudia Jovanovski

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Image ab-ballplank.jpg

5 moves for strong abs

Take your ab workouts to the next level with this 5-move midriff workout by WH&F trainer Nichelle Laus.One of the keys to a great physique is good posture and a toned midsection. Strong abdominal muscles will give you the necessary stamina you need to maintain proper form in your workouts and help you maintain the posture you desire in your daily activities.

This abdominal circuit, when coupled with nutritious food choices, will trim your waistline and define your midsection.For a full-time four or six pack, perform the following five exercises twice a week for four weeks.

Gradually increase the number of repetitions you can complete only when you are able to do so with perfect form.

ab-PRISONER.jpg

Lie flat on your back with your hands behind your head. Keep one leg straight and one leg bent with your ankle to the floor. Hinge at the hips as you raise your torso off the floor. While maintaining a tall posture, shift your weight onto your bent knee and raise yourself from a bottom lunge position to a standing position. Lower yourself back to the floor slowly by reversing the steps. Alternate legs each repetition.

Perform 8 to 12 total reps.

Trainer Tip – as you raise your back off the floor, be sure to hinge at the hip. Avoid rounding your low back.

Photography: Dave LausWords/workout: Nichelle Laus, WH&F trainer // nichellelaus.comModel: Tawny ClarkHair and Makeup: Two Chicks Some Lipstick1. Stability ball plank

 

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5 moves for strong abs

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THE-BEST-Activity-Tracker

Why Do I Need An Activity Tracker?

There is no escaping fitness bands nowadays, from TV ads to appearing on your friend’s wrist, they’ve fast becoming a mainstay in the UK. There’s such a range of bands and purposes that you’ll probably be able to find one for any niche (want a tracker to stop you from slouching?

Yep, that exists. Want to see how hard you can kick a ball? Yes, sir.), but at the core of almost every device out there is the ability to track steps, calories and sleep.

They’re not the most sexy of subjects, but they’re three of the most crucial to our health

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Why Do I Need An Activity Tracker?

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How to get rid of love handles

Say goodbye to stubborn love handles and uncover those abs with these tips…
Summer’s approaching and it’s around this time of year that everyone gets super body conscious. It’s okay, you’re not alone, love handles and stubborn fat are a problem for practically all of us. So if you want to look and feel great, there’s a lot of things to consider. Whilst diet and exercise are two powerful tools in the pursuit of a healthy body, sleep patterns, stress levels and body confidence all have their own part to play. Learn how to make the most of what you’ve got (and disguise those love handles) with our top expert tips.

Eat up, slim down
Always thinking about your next meal? Not anymore! The secret behind fat-loss success lies in properly fuelling your body with nutrient-dense food. Number one on the list is fibre – both the soluble and insoluble types. Fibre helps slow down digestion and recharges your body with a steady stream of energy, but worryingly, a whopping 90 percent of us don’t have enough roughage in our diets, according to a new study by Warburtons.
To win the war against wobbles, it’s important to go back to basics. Eat meals high in protein, which helps preserve lean muscle mass and omega-3 fatty acids. These turn on fat-burning enzymes in your cells and help regulate the appetite hormone leptin, which keeps you feeling satiated. Finally, spice up your meals for the ultimate metabolism kick. Chilli and paprika both contain a compound called capsaicin that helps speed up weight loss, while cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar levels and reduce cravings.
Fight fat: Government guidelines say we should consume 24g of fibre daily, so fill your plate with a variety of colourful fruit, veg and whole grains to ensure you reach your quota. Boost your omega-3 intake with nuts and fish such as sardines, salmon and mackerel, and add chilli, paprika and cinnamon to soups, stews and curries.

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Sleep easy, stay slim
The secret to maintaining your slim figure? A good night’s sleep! The link between sleep and staying slim is often underestimated, but you can double your chances of reaching your ideal weight if you get between six and eight hours sleep a night. ‘One third of the population of the UK is sleep deprived and this puts people at an increased risk of being overweight,’ says naturopath Sybille Gebhardt (sybille.co.uk). ‘Your body derives its energy from food and sleep. If one is lacking, then the other needs to increase to sustain your body’s necessary energy levels.’
A recent study by researchers at the University of Chicago found that sleep deprivation plays havoc with fat cells, reducing their ability to respond to the blood sugar balancing hormone insulin by 30 per cent.
Ever wondered why a bad night’s sleep leads to a day of bingeing? Lack of sleep also lowers levels of the appetite-controlling hormone leptin, sending signals to the brain to increase appetite. When you get enough sleep, leptin levels are higher – so you’re more likely to feel full when you eat.
Fight fat: Make sure you get a proper night’s rest by going to bed at the same time each night to help regulate your body’s circadian rhythm. Apply a spritz of lavender essential oil to your pillow and enjoy a soak in the tub before lights out to increase your chances of shut-eye.

Beat stress, lose weight
Being dedicated to your job may improve your career prospects, but it might not be such good news for your waistline. Even if you eat healthily and exercise regularly, leading a stressful lifestyle can stop you from losing inches. When you’re under stress, your body pumps out adrenaline and high levels of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol affects appetite, causing you to crave sugary, high-fat foods that stimulate the brain to release neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. This has a soothing effect on stress, but, obviously, it’s terrible news for your body. A high level of cortisol also promotes fat around your middle, known as visceral fat. This fat surrounds organs and releases fatty acids into your blood stream, raising insulin levels and increasing your risk of diabetes over the long term. ‘Many of us reach for food when we’re stressed,’ says Sybille. ‘Try meditation or yoga to calm your mind.’
Fight fat: Melt your muffin top with stress-soothing foods such as oily fish, which helps to regulate cortisol levels, or turkey, which increases serotonin levels. Practice yoga at least twice a week.

Feel confident, look great
Your biggest fat-loss obstacle? You’re looking at her in the mirror! Looking good is all about feeling good, so if you boost your body confidence you could send your fat-loss rate soaring. A study by scientists at the Technical University of Lisbon and Bangor University discovered that women are far more likely to shed pounds if they work on improving their body image issues. You might not have your dream body (yet), but embrace your best bits and you’ll look and feel your best.
Fight fat: Been blessed with long legs but a paunchy tum? Opt for skinny jeans with a smock top and a wow-inducing pair of heels. Hate your bingo wings but love your killer cleavage? A long-sleeved top with a scoop neckline will give you a lift.

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How to get rid of love handles

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10 ways to be more active

1 Choose the furthest corner

Instead of fighting for parking spots closest to the supermarket doors, park your car as far away as possible. This gives you the opportunity to walk further, for longer – and it’s less stressful, too.

2 Skip the lift

Stop taking the lift and take the stairs instead. It’ll get your heart pumping and body moving to build your fitness levels, plus climbing the stairs requires your bum, thigh and calf muscles to engage, helping to tone and sculpt your legs – a win-win!

3 Walk the last stop

If you commute to work by bus, jump off one stop early – or even two! – to increase
the distance you walk. Not only will this
add in some extra cardio exercise to your
day – particularly if you march at a fast pace – it’ll burn a few extra calories, too.  

4 Get pedalling

Boost your fitness by cycling to and from work. It’s a great way to get two cardio workouts into your day without having to take time out to exercise. Cycling is also a great way to tone up and keep those calories burning

 5 Use your lunch hour

Instead of staying glued to your computer screen, use your lunch hour for some retail therapy or a wander in the park. Just 20 minutes walking around the block, will help perk you up and boost your motivation. And, of course, it will add that extra bit of physical activity into your day. In fact, according to a recent study conducted at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
in California, walking briskly can lower your risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes as much as running. Walk on!

6 Leave your car at home

If you have kids, walk them to school instead of driving, if it’s close enough. Not only will you start your day with a spring in your step, but walking to school will also encourage your kids to be more active, and it also helps reduce pollution. If walking isn’t an option, why not take them to the park after school or to the swings to play? And make sure you run around as much as your kids do!

7 Stand up more!

While talking on the phone, whether at home or in the office, get out of your chair and stand up or pace up and down. As well as helping you to focus on the conversation, this can have real benefits for your health. A study by Dr John Buckley and a team of researchers from the University of Chester proved that standing for a total of three hours each day will burn up an extra 144 calories. Over a year, that adds up to about 30,000 more calories or eight pounds of fat!

8 Be a tourist

Instead of the usual catch-up over coffee and cake or dinner, why not arrange
a jog around the park with a friend instead
or book onto a sightseeing tour around your nearest city. You’ll still have a chance to chat, but you’ll get in a bit of extra cardio, too.

9 Get your groove on

Spending your evenings slumped in front of the TV after a stressful day at work? Why not create a playlist of some of your favourite songs and have a dance around your bedroom for 15 minutes (or longer!) instead? Or look up dance classes you can join in your area. Not only does dancing
help boost self-confidence, but it’s a great chance to get a sweat on and burn some extra calories. A study published by the American Council on Exercise found that dance-based workouts can burn 200-400 calories per hour – almost as much as you burn swimming, cycling or walking. 

10 Invest in a pedometer

Record the number of steps you take each day with a pedometer. Then challenge yourself to increase the number every day or have a competition with your partner
or friend to see who can bank the most steps. This will boost your motivation
and get you more active

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10 ways to be more active

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How to get rid of love handles

If you want to look and feel great, there’s a lot of things to consider. Whilst diet and exercise are two powerful tools in the pursuit of a healthy body, sleep patterns, stress levels and body confidence all have their own part to play. Learn how to make the most of what you’ve got (and disguise those love handles) with our top expert tips.

Eat up, slim down

Always thinking about your next meal? Not anymore! The secret behind fat-loss success lies in properly fuelling your body with nutrient-dense food. Number one on the list is fibre – both the soluble and insoluble types. Fibre helps slow down digestion and recharges your body with a steady stream of energy, but worryingly, a whopping 90 per cent of us don’t have enough roughage in our diets, according to a new study by Warburtons.
To win the war against wobbles, it’s important to go back to basics. Eat meals high in protein, which helps preserve lean muscle mass, and omega-3 fatty acids. These turn on fat-burning enzymes in your cells and help regulate the appetite hormone leptin, which keeps you feeling satiated. Finally, spice up your meals for the ultimate metabolism kick. Chilli and paprika both contain a compound called capsaicin that helps speed up weight loss, while cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar levels and reduce cravings.
Fight fat: Government guidelines say we should consume 24g of fibre daily, so fill your plate with a variety of colourful fruit, veg and wholegrains to ensure you reach your quota. Boost your omega-3 intake with nuts and fish such as sardines, salmon and mackerel, and add chilli, paprika and cinnamon to soups, stews and curries.

Sleep easy, stay slim

The secret to maintaining your slim figure? A good night’s sleep! The link between sleep and staying slim is often underestimated, but you can double your chances of reaching your ideal weight if you get between six and eight hours sleep a night. ‘One third of the population of the UK is sleep deprived and this puts people at an increased risk of being overweight,’ says naturopath Sybille Gebhardt (sybille.co.uk). ‘Your body derives its energy from food and sleep. If one is lacking, then the other needs to increase to sustain your body’s necessary energy levels.’
A recent study by researchers at the University of Chicago found that sleep deprivation plays havoc with fat cells, reducing their ability to respond to the blood sugar balancing hormone insulin by 30 per cent.
Ever wondered why a bad night’s sleep leads to a day of bingeing? Lack of sleep also lowers levels of the appetite-controlling hormone leptin, sending signals to the brain to increase appetite. When you get enough sleep, leptin levels are higher – so you’re more likely to feel full when you eat.
Fight fat: Make sure you get a proper night’s rest by going to bed at the same time each night to help regulate your body’s circadian rhythm. Apply a spritz of lavender essential oil to your pillow and enjoy a soak in the tub before lights out to increase your chances of shut-eye.

Beat stress, lose weight

Being dedicated to your job may improve your career prospects, but it might not be such good news for your waistline. Even if you eat healthily and exercise regularly, leading a stressful lifestyle can stop you from losing inches. When you’re under stress, your body pumps out adrenaline and high levels of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol affects appetite, causing you to crave sugary, high fat foods that stimulate the brain to release neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. This has a soothing effect on stress, but, obviously, it’s terrible news for your body. A high level of cortisol also promotes fat around your middle, known as visceral fat. This fat surrounds organs and releases fatty acids into your blood stream, raising insulin levels and increasing your risk of diabetes over the long term. ‘Many of us reach for food when we’re stressed,’ says Sybille. ‘Try meditation or yoga to calm your mind.’
Fight fat: Melt your muffin top with stress-soothing foods such as oily fish, which helps to regulate cortisol levels, or turkey, which increases serotonin levels. Practise yoga at least twice a week.

Feel confident, look great

Your biggest fat-loss obstacle? You’re looking at her in the mirror! Looking good is all about feeling good, so if you boost your body confidence you could send your fat-loss rate soaring. A study by scientists at the Technical University of Lisbon and Bangor University discovered that women are far more likely to shed pounds if they work on improving their body image issues. You might not have your dream body (yet), but embrace your best bits and you’ll look and feel your best.
Fight fat: Been blessed with long legs but a paunchy tum? Opt for skinny jeans with a smock top and a wow-inducing pair of heels. Hate your bingo wings but love your killer cleavage? A long-sleeved top with a scoop neckline will give you a lift.
 

Want to read more about fat loss? Subscribe to Women’s Fitness. We’ll give you 3 issues for £1.

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How to get rid of love handles

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Thumbnail

How To Get A Better Butt: 5 Rules For Stronger Glutes

Strong, round glutes are the foundation of a great physique and a healthy body. Unfortunately, many of us have weak glutes that just get weaker because we sit all day. Aside from not looking so great, feeble butt muscles can cause a litany of postural problems and pain issues. Even worse, having a weak bum means your primary lifts like the squat and the deadlift aren’t as strong as they could be. If that doesn’t motivate you to put some muscle on your backside, I don’t know what will!

To restore your ailing glutes, you need to make training them a priority. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with constantly tight hips and probably contract flat-ass disease.

Save your butt from these depressing side effects by following these five rules. They’ll help you feel stronger and more mobile. They’ll also help you add some great-looking curves to your rear end.

Hit Them Baby One (Okay, Three) More Times

If your training routine only calls for one glute-specific workout per week, it’s time to ramp things up. Glutes adapt well to frequency— the more often you train them, the quicker they grow in size and strength. Rather than performing a single glute workout once per week, add booty-busting exercises to each workout you do during the week.

Try this: Add loaded hip thrusts, glute bridges, hip abduction exercises, back extensions, or hip extension exercises to your daily workouts.

Single-leg bodyweight glute bridge

Mix Up Your Hip Extension

Hip extension is important for pelvic stability and daily movement. Walking, running, standing, and sitting in with proper posture begins and ends with your butt.

In this age of computers and cubicles, people spend most of their time in hip flexion (seated position). More often than not, long bouts of sitting cause tight quads, a tight psoas muscle, and weak hip extensors—namely the gluteus maximus.

To alleviate these symptoms and put yourself on a path to a perkier posterior, it’s wise to activate your hip extensors regularly. Hip extension occurs when the thighs or pelvis move rearward. The most common—and best—exercises for hip extension are the squat and deadlift. These two lifts belong in your lifting regimen along with assistance exercises to pack on glute mass.

Try this: Use squats and deadlifts as a primary hip extension exercises and add in one or two assistance exercises to each routine. Assistance lifts include, but aren’t limited to: Romanian deadlifts, single-leg Romanian deadlifts, hip thrusts, glute bridges, back extension, reverse hyperextension, glute kickback, and donkey kick.

“The most common—and best—exercises for hip extension are the squat and deadlift. These two lifts belong in your lifting regimen along with assistance exercises to pack on glute mass.”

Add a Little Abduction, Too

Your hips articulate in several ways other than the all-important extension. Your hips can also move in flexion, medial and lateral rotation, adduction, and abduction. If you move your hips in circles, you’ll get the idea. Along with hip extension, another important element of strong glutes is hip abduction, or moving the thighs outward from your midline.

Your glute medius is a major abductor of the thigh. Its anterior fibers rotate the hip internally while the posterior fibers rotate the hip externally. A strong glute medius will control any unwanted sideways movement in your pelvis. For example, if your left hip drops when you stand on your right leg, your right glute medius is probably weak. An unlevel pelvis can lead to other issues like IT band syndrome and patellofemoral pain syndrome, neither of which is pleasant.

Try this: To strengthen the glute medius, add 2 sets of 10 reps of standing cable hip abduction and 2 sets of 12 reps of seated band hip abduction twice per week.

Keep Your Booty Active

If you sit on them all day, your glutes will just become weaker and weaker. This weakness can be compounded when other muscles have to take over a lift in order to compensate for them. Avoid a weak booty by doing a series of activation and mobility drills ten minutes a day. Practicing glute activation will help them fire during every exercise.

Try this: Perform 10 reps of each exercise once per day.

  • Single-leg bodyweight glute bridge
  • Fire hydrant
  • Bird dog
  • Standing glute squeeze

Get Tense

“Passive tension is how your hamstring muscles feel at the bottom of a Romanian deadlift.”

Mechanical tension is the bee’s knees when it comes to muscle hypertrophy (growth). Mechanical tension occurs when you passively stretch or actively contract the muscle. Passive tension is how your hamstring muscles feel at the bottom of a Romanian deadlift and active tension is how your biceps feel as you contact in a barbell curl. Both are key players in muscle growth, and both can make a big difference in gluteal development.

When using a full range of motion (ROM), your muscles are placed under a combination of both passive and active tension. For example: At the bottom of a squat, your glutes are in a stretched (passive tension) position; at the top, they’re in a squeezed (active tension) position.

Maintaining this tension through a full range of motion is optimal for gains. To do it, control your reps, keep a steady tempo, and don’t rely on momentum to get through the exercise—oh, and don’t skimp on the ROM.

Try this: To increase mechanical tension, use a tempo for your exercises. Tempo is expressed as a series of 3 or 4 numbers, such as 2-2-2. The first number is the number of seconds in the eccentric (lowering) portion of the movement, the second number is the pause, and the third number is the number of seconds in the concentric (lifting) portion of the movement.

You can incorporate an exercise tempo as simple as 2-2 or 3-3. You can also incorporate a pause in the middle, like 3-3-3, or even have a longer eccentric portion like a 4-3 tempo. Remember, though, that adding a tempo doesn’t mean you get to forgo a full range of motion.

 

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Your cardiovascular health goes beyond spending 30 minutes on the treadmill! Here are 10 more ways to improve your heart health.

Guide To Resistance Training: 7 Things You Need To Know About Lifting Weights

A good resistance training plan doesn’t have to be complicated, but it should include a few basic tenets. Find out what they are and how to implement them!

Round Butt, Rockin’ Body: Glute Training For Women

Hey ladies! If you focus on training your glutes, you’ll get a whole body’s worth of benefits! Here’s the best way to a better rear end and a more aesthetic physique.

About The Author

Kellie Davis is a freelance writer and blogger turned fitness coach living in Northern California.

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How To Get A Better Butt: 5 Rules For Stronger Glutes

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<div id="DPG" webReader="155.433628319"><p>Supersets have been around forever, and for good reason. They can make a workout more productive, accelerate muscle hypertrophy, increase fat burning, and create faster strength gains. All supersets, are not created equal, however. Make the wrong choice, and the quality of both exercises can suffer, as can your progress toward your overall goal of increased strength, muscle growth, or fat loss.</p><p>Don't fall prey to random programming. Learn the secrets of effective exercise pairing for your specific goals, and you'll never view "rest" periods the same way again.</p><h3 class="article-title">Circuits 101</h3><p>A superset is a pair of exercises that are alternated. A triset is a set of three different exercises that are alternated. Both of these are types of circuits. Often, you'll see them labeled in a workout like this:</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="-23"><p><strong>A1.</strong> Bench press<br /><strong>A2.</strong> Barbell row</p></div><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/the-match-game-the-secret-to-great-supersets-1.jpg" width="560" height="293" border="0" class="c10"/><h6 class="altH6 c11">Bench Press/Barbell Row Superset</h6><p>Both exercises in this superset grouped and assigned A-group to distinguish them from other exercises on the program. In this case, you would alternate both A-group exercises would be alternated until all sets were complete. Sometimes, however, an extra exercise improves the rotation:</p><div class="left-side-stripe" webReader="-23"><p><strong>A1.</strong> Front squat<br /><strong>A2.</strong> Barbell row<br /><strong>A3.</strong> Plank</p></div><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/the-match-game-the-secret-to-great-supersets-2.jpg" width="560" height="191" border="0" class="c10"/><h6 class="altH6 c11">Front Squat/Barbell Row/Plank Triset</h6><p>The same format applies as the superset: You move from A1 to A2 to A3, then cycle back through until all sets are complete.</p><h3 class="article-title">Two Exercises or Three?</h3><div class="side-bar"><h3 class="article-title c12">Why Supersets are Super</h3><ul class="dpg-list"><li class="c13">Time efficiency. When rest isn't rest, but is another exercise, the workout becomes very dense.</li>
<li class="c13">Mutualistic exercises. When different exercises targeting a similar area are performed back-to-back, bloodflow increases to benefit the muscles involved in both.</li>
<li class="c13">Increased fat-burning. Do more work in the same amount of time, and you'll burn more calories.</li>
</ul></div><p>Rest and the way intensity dictates rest are the most important aspects involved in good exercise pairings. For our purposes, "rest" refers to the duration of the paired exercises in a superset or a triplet—not standing around recovering. Rest in a superset <em>is</em> the other exercise.</p><p>The easiest way to think about rest is by establishing a common set duration. A typical set of 10-12 reps takes close to a minute to complete. Difficult, whole-body exercises done at a high-intensity are better suited for two minutes of rest, which equates to two paired exercises and thus a triplet. Isolated movements at a relatively lesser intensity are fine with one minute of rest and thus constitute a superset.</p><p>If rest is inadequate, reps or resistance may suffer and the goal of the workout may be compromised. The following eight types of movements generally require more rest than a typical superset can provide, and thus are better suited for a triplet. Barring that, they should at least be paired with active rest or mobility work, and definitely not with one another.</p><div class="left-side-stripe"><ul class="dpg-list"><li class="c14">Chin-up or pull-up</li>
<li class="c14">Deadlift variations</li>
<li class="c14">Squat variations</li>
<li class="c14">Sprints</li>
<li class="c14">Bench press</li>
<li class="c14">Glute ham raise, hamstring curl, and other hamstring-dominant movements</li>
<li class="c14">Good mornings</li>
<li class="c14">Calf raise variations</li>
</ul></div><p>With the exception of the last movement, these are all compound or taxing single-jointed movements. When the whole body is forced to work hard to accomplish a task, <em>no exercise</em> paired with it will allow for quality rest.</p><p>Thus, if you're banging out chin-ups and front squats back to back, your numbers will drop off in a hurry on both. If the goal was 3 sets of 10 reps each of chins and squats, you'd likely turn in reps of 10 on set one, then 6 or 7 on set two, then maybe as few as 4 or 5 reps in the final set. It's simply too much work and too little quality rest to continue to meet the 10-rep goal.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/the-match-game-the-secret-to-great-supersets-3.jpg" width="560" height="406" border="0"/><p>"When the whole body is forced to work hard to accomplish a task, <em>no exercise</em> paired with it will allow for quality rest."</p><p>As for calf movements, they often cause cramping and fatigue when paired with other leg exercises, even at low intensities. The same goes for intense hamstring and lower back-dominant movements. Trying to pair them with something like front squats could be a recipe for technique degradation and potential injury.</p><p>Of course, how these movements affect each person is different, and a little trial and error goes a long way. Start by using the above list, listen to your body, and you will be on the road to more productive supersets and triplets.</p><h3 class="article-title">Supersets for Strength</h3><p>Supersets in strength-focused training aren't as popular as they are for hypertrophy and fat-loss training, but that doesn't mean they can't work well here. The best method is to choose supersets in the following two categories:</p><div class="left-side-stripe"><ul class="dpg-list"><li class="c14">Active rest: Use for the big lifts like squat, deadlift, and bench press variations.</li>
<li class="c14">Antagonists: Pair supporting movements that hit opposing muscles or movements in the same body area.</li>
</ul></div><p>Active rest means just that: getting <em>something</em> done within a rest period. Instead of standing around during the 2-3 minutes between heavy squat attempts, perform something that is focused on mobility, core strength, or isolation work. One of my favorites is the "no money."</p><h3 class="article-title">No Money <br /><span class="exercise-note">Watch The Video - 00:43</span></h3><iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/mclFCn5HDm4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><p>In each of the below, the A group is the strength component, and the B group is comprised of supporting movements.</p><div id="meal-plan-table"><h6>Triset</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-bench-press-medium-grip')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/360/Male/t/360_1.jpg" alt="Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('barbell-bench-press-medium-grip')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/360/Male/t/360_2.jpg" alt="Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-bench-press-medium-grip')">Bench Press</a></strong><br />5 sets of 3 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/no-money-1.jpg" alt="No Money" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/no-money-2.jpg" alt="No Money" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">No Money</a></strong><br />4 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('side-bridge')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/249/Male/t/249_1.jpg" alt="Side Plank" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('side-bridge')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/249/Male/t/249_2.jpg" alt="Side Plank" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('side-bridge')">Side Plank</a></strong><br />4 sets of 20 seconds per side</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Triset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('good-morning')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/686/Male/t/686_1.jpg" alt="Good Morning" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('good-morning')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/686/Male/t/686_2.jpg" alt="Good Morning" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('good-morning')">Good Morning</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('incline-bench-pull')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/278/Male/t/278_1.jpg" alt="Chest-Supported Row" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('incline-bench-pull')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/278/Male/t/278_2.jpg" alt="Chest-Supported Row" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('incline-bench-pull')">Chest-Supported Row</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_1.jpg" alt="Triceps Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_2.jpg" alt="Triceps Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')">Triceps Push-Down</a></strong><br />2 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
</ul><h6>Triset</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('box-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/665/Male/t/665_1.jpg" alt="Box Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('box-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/665/Male/t/665_2.jpg" alt="Box Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('box-squat')">Box Squat</a></strong><br />6 sets of 2 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('lying-triceps-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/342/Male/t/342_1.jpg" alt="Skull Crusher" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('lying-triceps-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/342/Male/t/342_2.jpg" alt="Skull Crusher" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('lying-triceps-press')">Skull Crusher</a></strong><br />5 sets of 8 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="http://youtu.be/cmLkLSG1i_Y?t=24s" rel="no-follow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/prone-l-raise-1.jpg" alt="Prone L-Raise" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmLkLSG1i_Y" rel="no-follow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/prone-l-raise-2.jpg" alt="Prone L-Raise" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmLkLSG1i_Y" rel="no-follow" target="_blank">Prone L-Raise</a></strong><br />5 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Triset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('farmers-walk')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/682/Male/t/682_1.jpg" alt="Farmers Carry" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('farmers-walk')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/682/Male/t/682_2.jpg" alt="Farmers Carry" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('farmers-walk')">Farmers Carry</a></strong><br />3 sets of 40 yards</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-hip-thrust')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/661/Male/t/661_1.jpg" alt="Barbell Hip Thrust" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('barbell-hip-thrust')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/661/Male/t/661_2.jpg" alt="Barbell Hip Thrust" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-hip-thrust')">Barbell Hip Thrust</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/20/Male/t/20_1.jpg" alt="Barbell Row" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/20/Male/t/20_2.jpg" alt="Barbell Row" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')">Barbell Row</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
</ul></div><br /><h3 class="article-title">Supersets for Hypertrophy</h3><p>For lifters focused on hypertrophy and bodybuilding, performing supersets that hit antagonistic muscle groups is a great way to accelerate hypertrophy in target areas. This will drive increased blood flow into the muscles of both the working and resting muscle group.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/the-match-game-the-secret-to-great-supersets-4.jpg" width="560" height="286" border="0"/><p>"Performing supersets that hit antagonistic muscle groups is a great way to accelerate hypertrophy."</p><p>Pairings can be based on muscles:</p><div class="left-side-stripe"><ul class="dpg-list"><li class="c14">Bicep/triceps</li>
<li class="c14">Chest/back</li>
<li class="c14">Hamstring/quadriceps</li>
<li class="c14">Delts/rotator cuff</li>
</ul></div><p>Or movements:</p><div class="left-side-stripe"><ul class="dpg-list"><li class="c14">Horizontal push/horizontal pull</li>
<li class="c14">Knee-dominant leg/hip-dominant leg</li>
<li class="c14">Overhead press/overhead pull</li>
</ul></div><p>Here's how some hypertrophy-centered upper body and lower body workouts could look. Keep reps relatively high, in the 8-12 range, and rest periods very short.</p><div id="meal-plan-table"><h6>Superset</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-bench-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1/Male/t/1_1.jpg" alt="Dumbbell Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-bench-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1/Male/t/1_2.jpg" alt="Dumbbell Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-bench-press')">Dumbbell Bench Press</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/20/Male/t/20_1.jpg" alt="Barbell Row" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/20/Male/t/20_2.jpg" alt="Barbell Row" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('bent-over-barbell-row')">Barbell Row</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('wide-grip-lat-pulldown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/10/Male/t/10_1.jpg" alt="Lat Pull-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('wide-grip-lat-pulldown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/10/Male/t/10_2.jpg" alt="Lat Pull-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('wide-grip-lat-pulldown')">Lat Pull-Down</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/370/Male/t/370_1.jpg" alt="Overhead Press" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/370/Male/t/370_2.jpg" alt="Overhead Press" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')">Overhead Press</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-curl')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/169/Male/t/169_1.jpg" alt="Biceps Curl" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('barbell-curl')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/169/Male/t/169_2.jpg" alt="Biceps Curl" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-curl')">Biceps Curl</a></strong><br />3 sets of 15 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_1.jpg" alt="Triceps Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/343/Male/t/343_2.jpg" alt="Triceps Push-Down" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('triceps-pushdown')">Triceps Push-Down</a></strong><br />3 sets of 15 reps</span></li>
</ul><h6>Superset</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('front-barbell-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/42/Male/t/42_1.jpg" alt="Front Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('front-barbell-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/42/Male/t/42_2.jpg" alt="Front Squat" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('front-barbell-squat')">Front Squat</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/no-money-1.jpg" alt="No Money" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/no-money-2.jpg" alt="No Money" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mclFCn5HDm4" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">No Money</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-lunges')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/32/Male/t/32_1.jpg" alt="Dumbbell Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-lunges')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/32/Male/t/32_2.jpg" alt="Dumbbell Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('dumbbell-lunges')">Dumbbell Lunge</a></strong><br />3 sets of 8 reps per leg</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('pull-through')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/707/Male/t/707_1.jpg" alt="Pull-Through" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('pull-through')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/707/Male/t/707_2.jpg" alt="Pull-Through" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('pull-through')">Pull-Through</a></strong><br />3 sets of 8 reps</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/714/Male/t/714_1.jpg" alt="Forward Sled Push" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/714/Male/t/714_2.jpg" alt="Forward Sled Push" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')">Forward Sled Push</a></strong><br />3 sets of 20 yards</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-side-split-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/310/Male/t/310_1.jpg" alt="Side Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('barbell-side-split-squat')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/310/Male/t/310_2.jpg" alt="Side Lunge" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-side-split-squat')">Side Lunge</a></strong><br />3 sets of 8 reps per leg</span></li>
</ul></div><p>In both workouts, you use oppositional movements and muscles that will keep the target body part pumped without ruining the movement. Notice that I didn't pair a leg exercise with front squat, though. As I mentioned earlier, form degradation is simply too big of a risk with a high-technique, whole-body movement. It's best to err on the safe side.</p><h3 class="article-title">Supersets for Fat loss</h3><p>Supersets can be used with great effect for fat loss by increasing the amount of work performed in a given timeframe. This burns tons of calories in the gym, and in the subsequent hours following training. Here, I think the best method is to pair heavy but relatively low-technique lifts with a highly metabolic exercise.</p><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/the-match-game-the-secret-to-great-supersets-5.jpg" width="560" height="342" border="0"/><p>"The best method is to pair heavy but relatively low-technique lifts with a highly metabolic exercise."</p><p>In particular, I've found tremendous success pairing movements that will tax the whole body, such as heavy dumbbell lunges, with lightweight metabolic movements that get the heart rate up. Mountain climbers are a good example. Because the metabolic exercise is light, and the heavy exercise relatively simple, this formula works well and doesn't crush one body part too much, allowing you to keep moving at a fast pace.</p><div id="meal-plan-table"><h6>Superset</h6><ul><li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/370/Male/t/370_1.jpg" alt="Overhead Press" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/370/Male/t/370_2.jpg" alt="Overhead Press" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('standing-military-press')">Overhead Press</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('mountain-climbers')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/608/Male/t/608_1.jpg" alt="Mountain Climber" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('mountain-climbers')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/608/Male/t/608_2.jpg" alt="Mountain Climber" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('mountain-climbers')">Mountain Climber</a></strong><br />3 sets of 30 seconds</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Triset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('muscle-up')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1501/Male/t/1501_1.jpg" alt="Ring Pull-Up" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('muscle-up')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1501/Male/t/1501_2.jpg" alt="Ring Pull-Up" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('muscle-up')">Ring Pull-Up</a></strong><br />3 sets of 8 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('battling-ropes')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1711/Male/t/1711_1.jpg" alt="Battling Ropes" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('battling-ropes')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/1711/Male/t/1711_2.jpg" alt="Battling Ropes" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('battling-ropes')">Battling Ropes</a></strong><br />3 sets of 20 seconds</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('pushups')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/70/Male/t/70_1.jpg" alt="Push-Up" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('pushups')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/70/Male/t/70_2.jpg" alt="Push-Up" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('pushups')">Push-Up</a></strong><br />3 sets of 20 reps</span></li>
</ul><h6>Superset</h6><ul><li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-incline-bench-press-medium-grip')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/369/Male/t/369_1.jpg" alt="Incline Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('barbell-incline-bench-press-medium-grip')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/369/Male/t/369_2.jpg" alt="Incline Bench Press" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('barbell-incline-bench-press-medium-grip')">Incline Bench Press</a></strong><br />3 sets of 12 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/714/Male/t/714_1.jpg" alt="Forward Sled Push" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/714/Male/t/714_2.jpg" alt="Forward Sled Push" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('sled-push')">Forward Sled Push</a></strong><br />3 sets of 20 yards</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('seated-cable-rows')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/45/Male/t/45_1.jpg" alt="Cable Row" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('seated-cable-rows')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/45/Male/t/45_2.jpg" alt="Cable Row" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('seated-cable-rows')">Cable Row</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="http://videos.bodybuilding.com/watch/15231/dumbbell-burpees"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2011/burpees_1.jpg" alt="Burpees" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="http://videos.bodybuilding.com/watch/15231/dumbbell-burpees"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2011/burpees_2.jpg" alt="Burpees" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="http://videos.bodybuilding.com/watch/15231/dumbbell-burpees">Burpees</a></strong><br />3 sets of 30 seconds</span></li>
<li class="c9">
<h6>Superset</h6>
</li>
<li class="rowBorderColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('romanian-deadlift')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/171/Male/t/171_1.jpg" alt="Romanian Deadlift" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('romanian-deadlift')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/171/Male/t/171_2.jpg" alt="Romanian Deadlift" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('romanian-deadlift')">Romanian Deadlift</a></strong><br />3 sets of 10 reps</span></li>
<li class="rowBgColor c15"><span class="mpt-images"><a href="javascript:pop('plank')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/908/Male/t/908_1.jpg" alt="Plank" width="53" height="53"/></a> <a href="javascript:pop('plank')"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/exerciseImages/sequences/908/Male/t/908_2.jpg" alt="Plank" width="53" height="53"/></a></span> <span class="mpt-content content"><strong><a href="javascript:pop('plank')">Plank</a></strong><br />3 sets of 90 seconds</span></li>
</ul></div><br /><h3 class="article-title">Lift More Efficiently, Grow More Quickly</h3><p>Try these methods of circuiting exercises and you'll find your workouts will become more productive and efficient. It takes time and experience to create an ideal routine, so experiment and see which methods best meet your goals. If you found a pairing that works perfectly—or disastrously—share it in the comments.</p><br class="c16"/><h3 class="article-title">Recommended For You</h3><div class="c19" webReader="4.95077720207"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/high-reps-low-reps-which-rep-scheme-is-best.html"><img src="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/images/2014/maximize-growth-and-development_smallbox_cellucor.jpg" alt="" width="200" height="114"/></a><div class="c18" webReader="6.0932642487"><h4 class="c17"><a href="http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/high-reps-low-reps-which-rep-scheme-is-best.html">High Reps, Low Reps? Which Rep Scheme Is Best?</a></h4><p style="display: inline;" class="webReader-styled">
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The Match Game: The Secret To Great Supersets

Supersets have been around forever, and for good reason. They can make a workout more productive, accelerate muscle hypertrophy, increase fat burning, and create faster strength gains. All supersets, are not created equal, however. Make the wrong choice, and the quality of both exercises can suffer, as can your progress toward your overall goal of increased strength, muscle growth, or fat loss.

Don’t fall prey to random programming. Learn the secrets of effective exercise pairing for your specific goals, and you’ll never view “rest” periods the same way again.

Circuits 101

A superset is a pair of exercises that are alternated. A triset is a set of three different exercises that are alternated. Both of these are types of circuits. Often, you’ll see them labeled in a workout like this:

A1. Bench press
A2. Barbell row

Bench Press/Barbell Row Superset

Both exercises in this superset grouped and assigned A-group to distinguish them from other exercises on the program. In this case, you would alternate both A-group exercises would be alternated until all sets were complete. Sometimes, however, an extra exercise improves the rotation:

A1. Front squat
A2. Barbell row
A3. Plank

Front Squat/Barbell Row/Plank Triset

The same format applies as the superset: You move from A1 to A2 to A3, then cycle back through until all sets are complete.

Two Exercises or Three?

Rest and the way intensity dictates rest are the most important aspects involved in good exercise pairings. For our purposes, “rest” refers to the duration of the paired exercises in a superset or a triplet—not standing around recovering. Rest in a superset is the other exercise.

The easiest way to think about rest is by establishing a common set duration. A typical set of 10-12 reps takes close to a minute to complete. Difficult, whole-body exercises done at a high-intensity are better suited for two minutes of rest, which equates to two paired exercises and thus a triplet. Isolated movements at a relatively lesser intensity are fine with one minute of rest and thus constitute a superset.

If rest is inadequate, reps or resistance may suffer and the goal of the workout may be compromised. The following eight types of movements generally require more rest than a typical superset can provide, and thus are better suited for a triplet. Barring that, they should at least be paired with active rest or mobility work, and definitely not with one another.

  • Chin-up or pull-up
  • Deadlift variations
  • Squat variations
  • Sprints
  • Bench press
  • Glute ham raise, hamstring curl, and other hamstring-dominant movements
  • Good mornings
  • Calf raise variations

With the exception of the last movement, these are all compound or taxing single-jointed movements. When the whole body is forced to work hard to accomplish a task, no exercise paired with it will allow for quality rest.

Thus, if you’re banging out chin-ups and front squats back to back, your numbers will drop off in a hurry on both. If the goal was 3 sets of 10 reps each of chins and squats, you’d likely turn in reps of 10 on set one, then 6 or 7 on set two, then maybe as few as 4 or 5 reps in the final set. It’s simply too much work and too little quality rest to continue to meet the 10-rep goal.

“When the whole body is forced to work hard to accomplish a task, no exercise paired with it will allow for quality rest.”

As for calf movements, they often cause cramping and fatigue when paired with other leg exercises, even at low intensities. The same goes for intense hamstring and lower back-dominant movements. Trying to pair them with something like front squats could be a recipe for technique degradation and potential injury.

Of course, how these movements affect each person is different, and a little trial and error goes a long way. Start by using the above list, listen to your body, and you will be on the road to more productive supersets and triplets.

Supersets for Strength

Supersets in strength-focused training aren’t as popular as they are for hypertrophy and fat-loss training, but that doesn’t mean they can’t work well here. The best method is to choose supersets in the following two categories:

  • Active rest: Use for the big lifts like squat, deadlift, and bench press variations.
  • Antagonists: Pair supporting movements that hit opposing muscles or movements in the same body area.

Active rest means just that: getting something done within a rest period. Instead of standing around during the 2-3 minutes between heavy squat attempts, perform something that is focused on mobility, core strength, or isolation work. One of my favorites is the “no money.”

No Money
Watch The Video – 00:43

In each of the below, the A group is the strength component, and the B group is comprised of supporting movements.

Triset
Triset

Supersets for Hypertrophy

For lifters focused on hypertrophy and bodybuilding, performing supersets that hit antagonistic muscle groups is a great way to accelerate hypertrophy in target areas. This will drive increased blood flow into the muscles of both the working and resting muscle group.

“Performing supersets that hit antagonistic muscle groups is a great way to accelerate hypertrophy.”

Pairings can be based on muscles:

  • Bicep/triceps
  • Chest/back
  • Hamstring/quadriceps
  • Delts/rotator cuff

Or movements:

  • Horizontal push/horizontal pull
  • Knee-dominant leg/hip-dominant leg
  • Overhead press/overhead pull

Here’s how some hypertrophy-centered upper body and lower body workouts could look. Keep reps relatively high, in the 8-12 range, and rest periods very short.

Superset
Superset

In both workouts, you use oppositional movements and muscles that will keep the target body part pumped without ruining the movement. Notice that I didn’t pair a leg exercise with front squat, though. As I mentioned earlier, form degradation is simply too big of a risk with a high-technique, whole-body movement. It’s best to err on the safe side.

Supersets for Fat loss

Supersets can be used with great effect for fat loss by increasing the amount of work performed in a given timeframe. This burns tons of calories in the gym, and in the subsequent hours following training. Here, I think the best method is to pair heavy but relatively low-technique lifts with a highly metabolic exercise.

“The best method is to pair heavy but relatively low-technique lifts with a highly metabolic exercise.”

In particular, I’ve found tremendous success pairing movements that will tax the whole body, such as heavy dumbbell lunges, with lightweight metabolic movements that get the heart rate up. Mountain climbers are a good example. Because the metabolic exercise is light, and the heavy exercise relatively simple, this formula works well and doesn’t crush one body part too much, allowing you to keep moving at a fast pace.

Superset
Superset

Lift More Efficiently, Grow More Quickly

Try these methods of circuiting exercises and you’ll find your workouts will become more productive and efficient. It takes time and experience to create an ideal routine, so experiment and see which methods best meet your goals. If you found a pairing that works perfectly—or disastrously—share it in the comments.


Recommended For You

High Reps, Low Reps? Which Rep Scheme Is Best?

A lot of people get stuck in middle ground training in which they neither gain the muscle size nor the strength they want. There’s a fix for that.

3 Ways To Extend Your Sets For New Gains

If your rep scheme isn’t getting you where you want to be, then add an additional exercise to snack on after the main course. Rest when you’re dead!

Ask The Pro Trainer: How Important Is The Number Of Reps I Do?

I’m a trainer of celebrities and VIPs, an IFBB Men’s Physique Pro, and a fitness advocate. I’d like to help you reach your goals by answering your tough questions!

About The Author

Check out these awesome articles by some of the best writers in the industry.

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The Match Game: The Secret To Great Supersets

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