Supersets for a Super Fast Workout

So, we’ve heard it all before and maybe we’re even guilty of it ourselves too – that all-too-common phrase, the biggest stumbling block in almost anyone’s workout routine – I don’t have the time.

plank

If you have a crazy schedule like most people these days, there’s lots of things you can do to maximize your time. Even if you have five kids and appointments all day long, you can employ the Tabata method and exercise while you’re vacuuming or brushing your teeth. The principle behind the Tabata method is to perform as many 20-second sets of exercises in four minutes. It’s a method used by the Olympic Japanese speed skating team and is really effective.

If you’re a commuter, try performing isometric exercises while you’re stuck in traffic.

Another way to get the most out of your time is through supersets. I’m a firm believer in supersets and I love to work out in the morning. Even though I’m not a typical morning person, it really sets up my day perfectly. I go into the office feeling strong and tall and ready to take on anything. Working out in the mornings is also a great way to burn up that nasty hormone cortisol that is especially high in the early hours. It’s what gets you out of bed and causes fat accumulation around the belly area.

When you perform a superset, you move from one exercise straight into the next with no rest in between. It increases muscle tear, which means leaner (bigger) muscles as a result.

I have two workouts that I do on separate mornings that take about 20 to 30 minutes.

Workout #1

  • Bicycle Crunches – 3 sets of 40 and 1 last set to finish the entire routine as active recovery
  • Incline push-ups – 3 sets of 10 (I use the edge of the bath tub – just make sure your hands are flat and not on the edge as this can cause bruising)
  • Dips – 3 sets of 10 (again, I use the edge of the bath tub)
  • Side Squats with side lateral and front shoulder raises – 3 sets of 12 reps each side. For this one, I stand with feet together, step out to one side (alternating sides) and squat while holding small weights and performing side lateral raises for 12 reps, finishing with 12 reps of front shoulder raises for the remaining 24 reps.
  • At the end of each circuit, rest 1 minute and repeat.

Workout #2

  • Plank – hold for 30 seconds
  • Push-ups – perform 3 push-ups, then move straight into Mountain Climbers for a count of 24 (12 each leg) and finish with one Burpee
  • Rest 1 minute after each set and repeat 3 times.
  • Reverse lunges with light weights – 3 sets of 12 each leg
  • Rowing with resistance bands – 3 sets of 12
  • Standing, alternating bicep curls – 3 sets of 12 each arm
  • Rest 1 minute and repeat.
  • Curtsey Lunges – bending your front leg at a 90-degree angle, while your other legs goes behind the other, as if you’re curtseying – 3 sets of 12 each leg
  • Back raises on an exercise ball – 3 sets of 12
  • Triceps extensions with dumbbells – 3 sets of 12
  • Rest 1 minute and repeat

You can customize your own workout to suit your own needs. Make sure to include some of your favorite exercises, since this will give you motivation and make it easier to face this workout challenge first thing in the morning. Go on, I dare you!

 

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Kelly Ripa’s Workout Part One

If there’s one person you can take inspiration from it’s Kelly Ripa. Now a reformed smoker, Kelly used fitness to cure herself of this nasty habit and get herself into serious  shape.

kelly_ripa_workoutShe gave up the smokes for working out 5 days a week with a workout that combines some typical moves with some you may not be familiar with.

In an interview with Shape Magazine, Kelly shared some of her workout and nutrition tips. Now we will all know the secret to her fabulous, shapely arms.

Being a busy Hollywood celebrity, the main goal for Kelly was finding a workout that would fit into her busy schedule. Under the expert eye of personal trainer Keith Byard, Kelly has reduced her power workout into 45 minutes of strength training and cardio combined.

This workout is one that you can do at home. All it requires, besides stamina and determination, is a jump rope and medicine ball, lightweight dumbbells, resistance bands or tubing and a Swiss Ball.

Kelly Ripa’s Workout

Squat with Rotational Row

Grabbing hold of the handle of your tubing with one hand, start with feet shoulder-width apart and palm down. Flexing your elbow, pull the tube into your ribs, and rotate your arm to finish in a flexed bicep curl, palm facing up. Hold this position as you lower down into a squat. Slowly, releasing your bicep contraction, raise yourself simultaneously out of the squat to begin again. Perform 2 sets of 12-15 reps.

Rotational Lunge

Again with tubing, grab hold with one hand and flex your arm to work your biceps, lowering yourself down into a lunge. Keeping your bicep flexed, raise yourself up and rotate 180° to lower down into a lunge again. Flip around to the starting position and repeat 2 sets of 12-15 reps each side.

One Leg Hip Lift

Lying on your back with arms extended, palms down, place one foot on a medicine ball and raise your hips off the ground, squeezing your glutes and hold for a second or two. Lower your hips down again but do not touch the ground, raising yourself up immediately into the next rep, making sure you don’t move the ball. Repeat for 2 sets of 12-15 reps each side.

Abs with a Twist

Lying on your back, clutching a medicine ball to your chest, sit up as you swing your legs out to the side to stand up fully. Finish this move by lowering yourself down the same way you came up to begin again. Perform 2 sets of 12-15 reps each side.

Push-Ups with Rotation

You’ll need a couple of lightweight dumbbells for this move. Holding the dumbbells in your hands, perform a push-up, twisting into a side plank and raising your outer arm up and hold for a count of three. Flip down into a push-up and rotate out to the other side. Perform 2 sets of 8 reps.

Swiss Ball Push-Ups

With your feet resting on a Swiss Ball while you perform push-ups puts more demand on your core as you have to control the ball’s movement as you lower yourself down. You want to move forward ever so slightly, but in a controlled and steady manner. Perform 2 sets of 12-15 reps.

Jumping Pyramid

Depending on your intesity, jumping rope burns 11-20 calories per minute and jumping jacks burn 8-9 calories per minute.

Jump Rope – 20 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 40 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 60 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 80 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 100 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 80 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 60 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 40 revolutions
Jumping Jacks – 30 seconds
Jump Rope – 20 revolutions

Perform 2 sets.

Originally published @ FITLODE.COM

Sexy Arms Workout Using Exercise Balls

Sexy, sculpted arms are the envy of just about everybody, which is why we’ve put together this demanding arm workout.

sexy arm workoutThe beauty of this workout is that you only need two pieces of inexpensive equipment both of the spherical type – a Swiss ball and a medicine ball!

How do you choose the right size ball for you. For Swiss balls, it depends on your height:

  • Height = 4’6″ to 5’0″ –> Ball Size = 45 cm
  • Height = 5’1″ to 5’7″ –> Ball Size = 55 cm
  • Height = 5’8″ to 6’1″ –> Ball Size = 65 cm
  • Height = 6’2″ to 6’7″ –> Ball Size = 75 cm

Medicine balls are a great piece of equipment to have and are used primarily for strength training. The weight can range from 1 lb to 30 lb. If your workout is more of a cardio workout, then you will want a lighter ball. If you’re trying to increase strength, then a heavier ball would be necessary. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends that “the ball should be heavy enough to visibly slow the motion, but not so heavy that control, accuracy or range of motion are lessened.”

For this workout you will want a moderately heavy medicine ball.

Swiss Ball Push-ups

Get yourself into a push-up position with your legs on a Swiss ball – thighs for beginner, shins for intermediate, or feet for advanced on the Swiss ball. Perform as many push-ups as you can till failure and try to beat this number for each set.

Medicine Ball Curls

This exercise imitates a close-grip barbell curl and isolates the bicep muscle nicely. Stand with the medicine ball in both hands in a lowered position in front of you, palms facing up. Flex your arms up for a bicep curl, lower and repeat. 10 – 16 reps.

Overhead Triceps Extension with Medicine Ball

Sitting on your Swiss ball and holding the medicine ball, raise it up above your head and bend your elbows back so you’re holding the medicine ball behind your head. Next, extend your forearms straight up to work the triceps and repeat for 10 – 16 reps.

Medicine Ball Toss

Standing with feet shoulder-width apart, grab the medicine ball in both hands and toss it above your head, then catch it and toss it back and forth four times, then repeat. This is one rep. Perform 12 – 16 reps.

Medicine Ball Slam

Starting in the same position as the Overhead Triceps Extension exercise, with a forceful motion bounce the ball on the ground, then catch it and return to your starting position to repeat for 24 reps.

Stand with your feet parallel and knees slightly bent. Pull the medicine ball up and back behind your head (without over arching your back), and forcefully throw the ball down to the ground as hard as possible. Catch the ball on the bounce up from the ground and repeat.

Front Raises

Holding the medicine ball in both hands down by your thighs with feet shoulder-width apart, raise the ball up to shoulder height, hold for 3 seconds and repeat for 16 reps.

Start standing with the medicine ball between your hands and your arms straight in front of your thighs. Lift your arms, keeping them straight but not locked, up to shoulder height. (Remember to keep your abdominals tight and your back straight). Slowly lower your arms down to your waist and repeat.

Once you’ve worked through this circuit once, return to the beginning and repeat for a total of 3 to 4 times. You can perform this workout twice a week.

Killer Workout for Abs that Pop!

Probably the most popular area that people want to improve is their waistlines. Everybody wants six-pack abs!

AbWorkoutBesides putting in the work and dedicating a chunk of training time solely to ab work and core strength, cardio and clean eating are two crucial elements that most people overlook. If you want to look cut and shredded, you need to make sacrifices in the kitchen.

On a regimented daily basis, you need to stop eating:

  • Sugar and anything the contains sugar
  • White flour (bread, pasta, cakes and pastries)
  • White rice
  • White potatoes
  • Deep fried foods
  • Processed foods
  • Refined foods
  • Most vegetable oils (unless they’re healthy MUFAs)
  • Too many fruits and fruit juice
  • GMO foods

On a regimented daily basis, you need to start:

  • Drinking more fresh, filtered water
  • Eating more vegetables, especially dark, leafy greens (low in carbs)
  • Eating more Omega3 fats and MUFAs like extra virgin olive oil
  • Eating more protein
  • Eating more organic food options
  • Eating more wholegrains and wholesome foods
  • Eating smaller meals more frequently

In order to show off those six-pack abs, you need to reduce your BMI and that means fat-burning cardio and high intensity interval training. Long cardio sessions are becoming a thing of the past. Science is now pointing to short-burst, high intensity interval training as the safer, more efficient option to work out.

Once you’ve got your fat burning and nutrition sorted out, next comes the grueling ab training. Here’s a killer workout that you should incorporate 2 to 3 times a week for well-developed abs. The secret is to use weighted training for your ab routine.

Killer Ab Training for Abs that Pop!

Hanging Leg Raises with weight between your legs or ankle weights – raise legs to 90-degree angle and repeat till failure

Barbell Roll Outs – using a barbell with 5 to 10 lb weights, start in a jack knife and roll out to a push-up position. Then squeeze in your abs and roll back to the starting position. Repeat for 10 – 12 reps.

Cable Crunches – using cables with a rope attachment, kneel down with your back to the machine – pull the weight down while folding in at the waist to engage the abs. Repeat for 10 – 12 reps.

Plank – hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds.

Double Press-Ups – lying on an incline bench with a barbell with 5 or 10 lb weights – move into a chest press and transition all the way up into a shoulder press to finish, straightening up your body. Roll down and repeat for 10 – 12 reps.

Once you’ve completed one circuit, take a 2-minute break and sip on some intra-workout Aminocore. Then complete another 2 circuits for a total of 3.

Make sure you fuel your body afterward with a high quality whey protein isolate shake for rapid recovery and increased lean muscle.

Originally published @ FITLODE.COM

Burn more Fat with Kettlebells

Kettlebell training is growing in popularity and has been touted as the best way to burn fat and the fastest way to lose weight – better than aerobics, running, treadmills or any other method of fat burning.

Burn more fat with kettle bellsNow scientists have proven the hype is true.

Scientists at University of Wisconsin are stunned by research: Kettlebell calorie burn is off the charts.

This research was funded by the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and published in the January/February 2010 issue of ACE FitnessMatters.

Using a VO2 max kettlebell snatch protocol, subjects engaged in a 20-minute workout and burned an average of 272 calories. But that’s not all. Anaerobic consumption was also measured and that raised the calorie burn by 6.6 calories per minute, “which is off the charts. That’s the equivalent of running a 6-minute mile,” says John Porcari, lead researcher of the study.

Kettlebell training is typically done in a fashion that replicates interval training due to its high intensity and short duration and this racks up the calorie burn in less time. It is a total body workout and an excellent way to burn fat and tone muscle at the same time.

The trick to kettlebell training is to begin with a very light weight until you build up your strength and get used to the moves. There are a lot of wrist action and body maneuvres that take some getting used to, but once you master the art, you will be burning fat and losing weight at a faster rate than just about any other workout out there.

Fat-Burning Kettlebell Swings

  • Kettlebell Swings – 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off, for 4 rounds or sets (20 to 50 reps)
    Rest 90 seconds
  • Kettlebell Power Snatches – 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off, for 4 rounds (can be done one side at a time or both sides simultaneously)
    Rest 90 seconds
  • Kettlebell Swings – 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off, for 4 rounds
    Rest 90 seconds
  • Kettlebell Sumo Deadlift High Pull – 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off, for 4 rounds
    Rest 90 seconds

At the end of this workout, take some time (5-10 minutes) to cool down with light activity and some stretching and be sure to get in your post-workout nutrition to refuel and repair.