I've decided to lean down a wee bit coming up to Christmas. Not that I'm particularly heavy at the moment (around 84kg at 6'2). However, I have been focusing on strength and power this year in my workouts - doing low rep range olympic lifts, powerlifts, sprints etc - and I've been somewhat neglecting my muscular (strength) endurance.
I'd like to improve my maximum pull ups, push ups, handstand hold, dips and other measures of relative strenght, while continuing to improve my balance and flexibility through yoga and stretching and also develop some more gymnastics skills. i.e. I want to be a lithe, supple puma rather than a jacked up gorilla.
So I'm going to stop the heavy lifting for a while and instead ramp up the intensity with bodyweight workouts and circuits, incorporating some more intervals on the treadmill and rower to also improve my cardiovascular endurance and speed.
As you know I'm not a fan of steady-state cardio but I still want to be able to run efficiently when necessary and feel light on my feet. Carrying excess muscle hasn't been a priority of mine since High School. It certainly doesn't help with modeling. It's all about lean! My goal remains to improve metabolic conditioning and functional strength, rather than just being able to run far.
With the above in mind, today's workout is a great full body circuit focusing on key structural movements - a pull, a push, a squat, a gymastic (isometric) hold and a core-developing exercise.
Just google or YouTube any movements you are unsure of, or even better, ask a trainer to demonstrate and check your form.
Workout (Advanced - no rest between exercises)
10 pull ups
10 pistols per leg (one-legged squat)
60 second handstand hold (against wall)
18 TRX reverse crunch
800m Run (as fast as possible, not a jog)
9 pull ups
9 pistols per leg
45 second handstand hold
15 TRX reverse crunch
8 pull ups
8 pisols per leg
30 second handstand hold
12 TRX reverse crunch
If you need to scale down this workout here are some alternative exercises:
1. TRX standing incline row
2. Bench dips (with legs on floor)
3. Air squats
4. Push up hold (at top of push up)
5. Lying leg raises
Instead of the run you could do a slower jog (same distance). Alternatively you could use a stationary bike (1.5km, 1km, 0.5km) or ergo rower (500m, 400m, 300m).
This workout really smashed me yesterday, but in a good way. I went pretty hard on the runs and was gasping for breath like a winded footballer after each round. However, unlike after a heavy CrossFit workout, I left the gym feeling good and energised and today I'm not crippled with delayed onset muscular soreness. Winning!
My post workout meal of wild salmon salad, roasted beets, sweet potato and Brussels sprouts from Dig Inn was epic!
"Eat Paleo. Train. Live life." - The Paleo Model.