Tag Archive | "compound"

alexa T

Top 3 training tips by Alexa Towersey

1. Resistance Training: 

Combine four compound exercises in one giant set:

8–10 x Barbell Back Squats

8–10 x Barbell Bent-Over Rows

8–10 x Deadlifts

6–8 x Pull-ups 

24 x Barbell Walking Lunges

TIP: Rest for 2 minutes between rounds and complete 3 to 5 rounds

 

2. HIIT Training:

I like 400m sprint repeats the best.

Start with 5 to 7 and increase each week. 60 to 90 seconds rest between.

TIP: Don’t do these on the same day as your weight training.

 

3. Tabata Protocols:

I like to use Tabata-style exercises as ‘finishers’ after a weight-training workout.

It’s essentially maximum reps of an exercise in 20 seconds followed by a 10-second rest and repeated for a total of eight rounds (4 minutes or 2:40 of actual work).

TIP: My preferred variations include thruster, squat jumps, air assault bike, burpees, mountain climber or deadmill.

 

Top 3 training tips by Alexa Towersey

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Full body resistance band workout

Give your whole body a strength and cardio workout in one with Ashley Azevedo‘s resistance band workout.

The workout

Circuit training simply means performing exercises back to back with little to no rest in between. Its elevator pitch is maximum perks in minimum time. Due to the fast-paced nature of circuit training, it elevates heart rate and couples cardio and strength training.

Even if you’re solely a weights girl, resistance bands are a great way to keep your body guessing and prevent plateaus. The resistance, reps and number of circuits can all be varied to meet your goals and fitness level.

What you need to do

Consider the list a sequence, not an a la carte menu. Perform a set (10 to 15 reps) of the first exercise and move immediately to the second exercise. Perform one set and move immediately to the third exercise and so on. Keep rests as short as possible. After you complete one full circuit, rest for about 60 seconds and start again. Available time and current fitness level will determine how many cycles you do, but aim for one to five.

(Fit tip: Don’t try to do too much too soon. It’s false economy.) Make sure you warm up the muscles you’ll use before any workout and cool down and stretch out afterwards to avoid injury and consult your doctor before starting any new training regimen.

Targets: Biceps, Delts

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Perks: This compound movement allows multiple muscle groups to be worked with one exercise, making it time efficient and adding to the difficulty of your workout. Sculpt the arms with this two-in-one exercise.

Move: Stand with both feet on top of the band, about hip-width apart.

(Fit Tip: You can control how easy or hard the exercise is by where you stand on the band to create more or less tension.) Start with both arms straight and begin to curl the arms up and towards the chest. Keep your elbows locked at your side. Once you get to the top of your curl, rotate your arms outward and turn your hands so palms are facing away. Press straight up, pause at the top, lower back down and repeat.

Words and workout by Ashley Azevedo.

Photography by James Patrick.

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Full body resistance band workout

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The benefits of plyometric exercises

“The plyo box has been popular among athletes and hard-core fitness enthusiasts for a while now, but has become more mainstream since the introduction of CrossFit,” says elite trainer of over 15 years Matthew Strickland.

“They are great for cardio-based and high-intensity training, but can also be used for rehabilitative purposes and for evening out physique imbalances.”

Plyometric boxes and aerobic steps come in a range of heights and sizes to adhere to varying fitness levels and exercise goals. While fixed-height boxes are available and usually come in sets of three to four, try opting for a sturdy, adjustable step if you are tight on space. And if you aren’t confident in the jumps, we say go for foam rather than metal or wood versions: a lot less chance of skinned shins.

For cardio/fat loss: Plyometric training involves using explosive bodyweight movements to exert maximum force in the shortest amount of time – making them the perfect fat-burning tool. Explosive movements also mean power and strength, especially in the lower body, can be achieved. Again, keep rest periods short and repetitions as high as possible – although given their taxing nature, sessions shouldn’t go much longer then 30 to 45 minutes. Tip: “When performing box jumps, start in a quarter squat and hinge from the hips to engage the hamstrings and glutes,” says Strickland. “Landings on the box should be soft to help avoid injury.”

For toning: While plyometric training is renowned for explosive bodyweight movements, Strickland says that there are a range of toning exercises that can be performed simultaneously. “Think anything from single-leg step-ups to incline push-ups using the box,” he says. “The varied range will target muscles you never even knew you had.”

“With proper technique, kettlebells can be used to train your entire body for both toning and fat-burning goals,” says Strickland. “I run a half-hour class and never repeat the same exercise, so boredom is never an issue.”

Compound movements such as the kettlebell swing, in which the centre of gravity shifts, work the entire body while moves native to dumbbell workouts often isolate one or two muscle groups.

“Kettlebells, in my experience, allow people to get deeper into the movements than say a dumbbell,” says Strickland.

For toning:  Kettlebells of varying weights can be used to load isolated muscle groups. When setting up your home gym, opt for a set of light, medium and heavy kettlebells to ensure everything from shoulders to legs can be worked. Strickland’s favourite for a killer lower-body toning session? “I often work some of my favourite kettlebell exercises into a circuit to ensure the muscles are exhausted while also providing a killer cardio and fat-burning workout,” he says. “Try a burpee to kettlebell deadlift to kettlebell upright row. Say no more, this will push your whole body to its limits, and then some.”

For fat loss/cardio: Fat loss and cardio fitness are best achieved through circuit-style training, with limited rest and higher repetitions to ensure the heart rate is elevated for long periods. Strickland suggests high-intensity interval work, with exercises performed for 45 seconds at max reps followed by a short 15-second rest. Sessions should last for about 20 to 30 minutes all up. “Work from the larger muscle to smallest, allowing you to achieve a wider variety of movements. It also means the most taxing, compound movements are completed first,” says Strickland.

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The benefits of plyometric exercises

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