Summer is here and that means working on your summer fitness routine to keep you strong and healthy.
Burn the most calories in the most efficient way possible with this total body toning exercise. You will target every major muscle area in your body from head to toe while increasing your strength. Stay consistent with this workout over the summer at the gym and you will notice a huge difference in your body and health in just seven different movements.
Tips Before the Workout
A proper warm-up is essential with this workout – especially with the summer heat! By warming up properly with stretching or foam rolling and some basic exercises you are raising your heart rate slowly.
Another thing to remember before diving into the workout is to complete a few warm-up sets of each exercise. Increase your weight in the warm-up sets to help you find a comfortable weight to use throughout the rest of the workout.
An example of a good warm-up set with weights and reps:
- 40lbs x 8
- 70lbs x 8
- 90lbs x 8
- 100lbs x 8 (This last set of 100lbs was challenging so this will be your first of 3 additional work sets).
To adjust this workout for your skill level there are a few things to consider:
- Beginner users: Use a weight that is moderately challenging but enables you to keep perfect form with every rep.
- Intermediate users: Use a weight that is challenging to complete all your sets and keep perfect form but allows you to decrease your rest periods slightly.
- Advanced users: Use a weight that is very challenging to complete the first set, rest around 3-4 minutes and complete it again at the same weight. This will help maximize strength adaptations. For the superset portions try to rest a little as possible.
Proper Forms To Remember For This Workout
Starting in a crouched position, push with your legs and your hands. At the ending position your legs and arms will be fully extended (think: standing up with your hands over your head). Hold this ending position for a 5 count; really try to squeeze the handles away from you and simultaneously squeeze your butt and abs tight.
Set the pulleys so they are around mid-chest level. Grab the handles and stagger your stance. When you start to push, make sure your elbows are below your shoulders and your shoulder blades are pinched back together and stay that way. The handles should be below your shoulders to make this possible. Press out till your arms are fully extended keeping neutral wrists and return to the starting position.
Stand just a bit more than arm’s length from the pulley, with your torso at 90 degrees from the pulley. With both arms grab the handle by rotating your torso but not moving your feet. Keep your arms rigid and straight, squeeze your abs tight and pull the handle across your body and slightly downward. Keep your arms straight the entire time! Do this until you are facing away (180 degrees) from the pulley. Then return back to the starting position.
Set the seat up so that your hands are a little above shoulder height. Grab the handles with a neutral wrist and vertical forearm. Press the handles as far away from you as possible. (Think shrug upward at the top). Return the handles back to the starting position ensuring you keep a vertical forearm. Stop the handles just before the weight stack hits.
With feet shoulder width, take a slightly exaggerated step forward. While bending your front leg, lower your back leg to the floor. Both legs should be bent around a 90 degree angle. Gently tap your back knee to the floor and pull yourself forward to your front foot. (Think pull through your heel on your front foot). Once standing up straight again, take another step forward and repeat.
Start with fully extended arms, when you initiate the pulldown, try to squeeze your scapula down towards your butt. End with the bar just below your chin, with vertical forearms. Return the bar to the fully extend arm position. Keep your knees pressed against the pad during the whole set.
Begin by lying on the floor. Put your forearms flat on the floor, keep your hands apart and get your elbows underneath your shoulders. Keeping your legs and core tight, pick up your hips. You should look like a straight line from your head to your feet. Don’t push your hips too high (like an arch) and don’t let your hips sag (like a bridge).
This movement is about efficiency and not as much about form. Many people will perform this movement safely with vast differences. With a Burpee you want to go from a standing position to a prone position (lying on your chest) back to a standing position. To do this efficiently you will kind of “flop” yourself to the floor using the least necessary control as to not hurt yourself or smash your face on the floor. Once your chest touches the floor, immediately push yourself up and jump your feet underneath you and stand back up with your feet leaving the floor at the standing position. That is one rep.
With the rower, be sure to make it 80% leg drive and 20% arm pull. With every stroke try to pull as much chain as possible. Set the damper to around 8, as this is the most efficient setting for most people to row.
Always focus on your form with each movement and rep. This is very important on all movements, but be extra sure on the Composite Total Body Press. The finished position of this movement takes a lot of core and shoulder stability. Be sure to control each rep as over extension could lead to knee, shoulder, and back injuries.
Make each set somewhat challenging but not to the point where your form begins to fail. Log your weights used and simply repeat this workout in a week or two to see how much better you have gotten. Make sure you stay active, eat enough food, and get enough rest. All these factors will help you recover from your workout faster.
This total body toner is an ideal workout to complete at the gym this summer! With it being summer, just be mindful of the heat and don’t overexert your body.