How It Works
1. After your warm-up, begin with split squats (leading with your right leg) for 20 seconds. Follow this with a rest period of 40 seconds.
2. At the end of the rest period, go right into push-ups for 20 seconds and follow with a rest period of 40 seconds.
3. Next complete kneeling pull downs for 20 seconds. Rest for 40 seconds.
4. Perform a forward plank for 20 seconds. Rest for 40 seconds.
5. Hop on the bike set to a challenging resistance for 20 seconds. Rest for 40 seconds.
6. Proceed through the exercises listed following the 20 on / 40 off sequence until you complete your workout.
Week 1: 20 seconds on, 40 seconds off
Week 2: 30 seconds on, 40 seconds off
Week 3: 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off
Week 4: 40 seconds on, 30 seconds off
Circuit Training Tips
1. Pay close attention to your form with each exercise. Circuit workouts are tough, and you'll eventually become fatigued, especially toward the end of the session. Always, always, always put form, technique and control first. Consider having someone help run the workout to keep track of work/rest times and to monitor form. This will help you to not become distracted and concentrate instead on the effort.
2. Selecting weights for circuits can be challenging. A good rule of thumb is to start with 50 percent of the weight you would use in a more traditional workout. It's better to start off with lighter weights and increase the weight if you need to during the next workout.
3. To make this workout more challenging, go through the entire sequence 2 or 3 times.
4. Since most people workout in different environments, don't be afraid to change the exercises to match your workout facility. As long as you keep with the lower body, upper body push, upper body pull, core and bike progression, you can add any exercise that you like. In fact, you should come up with different exercises as you become comfortable with the overall flow of the workout.
5. For those of you with little room (small gym, exercising at home, etc.) or limited equipment, pick a lower body exercise, an upper body push exercise, an upper body pull exercise, a core exercise and follow with the bike. Cycle through the routine three times. For example, you can do squats, push-ups, standing rows (with an elastic band), lateral planks and the bike.
6. Be prepared to be flexible within your workout. If you work out in a public facility, there's a possibility that an exercise piece may not be available—you may have to improvise on the spot. For example, if you're scheduled to do dumbbell chest presses and the only bench is being used, do push-ups instead and come back to chest presses later.
7. Circuits are a lot more enjoyable with a group. See if you can get a group together to share the fun!
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