Full body workouts to get results & save time


Does your usual excuse for not working out include not having enough time? You don’t need to spend your life in the gym to get results and feel amazing. Full body workouts have their place. They are great for those with limited time and have to goal to stay healthy and energetic, or for those who are rehabing an injury and need more recovery time during the week.

These reasons all apply to me right now. I’m super busy with getting the new magazine ready. When I got back from my 2 month sojourn out of the country I wanted to propel myself back into lifting and exercising. Taking that much time off from the gym meant I had lost a bit of strength and endurance but also gained fat. My goal was to move the whole body three times a week to get back into the swing of things.

kb-swingHere is one of the workouts I did this week last week.

1. Alternating One-Arm Kettlebell Swings – 14 swings each side x3
If you aren’t using kettlebell training in your workout routine it’s time to start! Incorporate regular kettlebell swings and when you have the form mastered give one arm swings a try. I love starting my workout with either of these because it warms up the whole body. Watch this video to learn the movement.

2. Bench Press superset with In/Outs – 10-12 reps with 20 reps x3
Good ole bench press isn’t going anywhere. This compound movement should be in your training whether you do full body or body part split workouts. Rather than do abs at the end of my workout, I like to superset them with other larger body parts. In/Outs are easy to do right on the bench or you can move to the floor.

3. Sumo Squats superset with Seated Lateral Raise and Mountain Climbers – 15 reps with 10 reps and 30 seconds x3
I like to superset leg work with shoulders to get more work done. I threw in the mountain climbers to elevate my heart rate and break a sweat.

4. Bent Over Rows superset with Russian Twists – 12 reps with 15 reps each side x3
I used a barbell for this essential back exercise and superset it with my favorite oblique exercise holding a medicine ball.
Watch this video to learn the progression of the Russian Twist.

5. One Leg-Extensions superset with Roman Chair Straight Leg Raise – 10 reps each leg with 12 reps x3
I love doing unilateral exercises with my legs because my right leg (the same leg as my recovering sprained ankle) is weaker and less developed than my left leg. So I actually do more reps on my weaker leg. Again supersetting abs in, the Roman Chair is just a few machines down so it’s easy to move back and forth between them. If you can’t do raises with straight legs do knee raises. Watch this video to see how to do Roman Chair Knee Raises.

You would be surprised that this workout took me only an hour. I timed my rest periods between sets to keep them all under 45 seconds and didn’t lag when moving from exercise to exercise. That is one of the tricks to getting in more volume in less time! I stayed in the 10-15 repetition range to keep my metabolism pumping and encourage fat-burning. In a few more weeks when I feel ready I may switch to the 5-8 repetition range to start building my strength again.

So if you need a jumpstart to your workouts and new year try three times a week full body workouts that have at least 6-8 exercises of 3 or 4 sets each. Keep rest periods between sets under one minute!

Have you ever done full body workouts 3 or 4 times a week? What do you think of that kind of training?

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