In this workout, you’re going to be using in a circuit format, performing 20 reps of all five movements, before circling back to the beginning of the circuit for 15 reps of each, then 10 and finally one last blast of 5, smashing through 50 reps of each movement and a grand total of 250, that will leave you pumped to the gils- the perfect way to start the week.
Rest only as necessary to maintain good form, as the quicker you can get through the circuit, the more metabolically effective it will be. Just ensure each rep is as good as the first. It’s the quality of the contractions that count, not the time on the clock.
“This one is going to start tough and not getting any easier,” says Men’s Health fitness editor Andrew Tracey. “But remember it’s bodybuilding, so while the burn may be real, push through it and your heart and lungs will keep you moving.
“Pick weights you know you can handle for 20 reps and try to use the same load throughout. If you have to break the sets up a bit to hit the target, that’s fine! Just grab a few breaths and get back into your set as quickly as possible."
You can use any kit you like for this one, dumbbells, barbell, even a sandbag. So there really is no excuse for skipping it.
1) Push press x 20, 15, 10, 5
Lift a pair of dumbbells onto your shoulders, palms facing inward (A). Dip at the knees and use your legs to help press both dumbbells overhead (B). Pause for a breath at the top before lowering the bells under control to your shoulders. Repeat.
2) Dumbbell Rows x 20, 15, 10, 5
Hold a dumbbell in each hand and bend your knees slightly, hinging at the hips so your back is almost parallel to the floor, arms hanging loose. (A). Row the weights up towards your hips, keeping your core tight, and your back straight (B). Lower the dumbbells under control and repeat.
3) Dips x 20, 15, 10, 5
Jump up on to two parallel bars or a dip station with palms facing inwards and your arms straight (A). Slowly lower until your elbows are at right angles, ensuring they don’t flare out (B). When you feel a stretch across your chest, explosively drive back up to the top and repeat.
4) Dumbbell Curl x 20, 15, 10, 5
Grab a lighter set of dumbbells (or strip some weight from your bar) and stand tall with them at your sides, your palms facing towards you (A). With minimal momentum, curl one bell upward, rotating your pinky towards your face as you do, until it reaches your shoulder (B). Squeeze here and lower the weighs under control back to fully extended arms. Repeat on the other side and alternate for the full number of reps on each arm.
*If you don’t have access to any lighter dumbbells, simply grab one of the pair you’ve been using for the rest of circuit, hold it horizontally in two hands and perform a curl as you would with a barbell. Be warned, this may be half the weight but a ‘squeeze curl’ brings a whole new pump inducing stimulus!
5) Burpee x 20, 15, 10, 5
After your final rep, put the dumbbells down, lay them on the ground beside you and drop into a press-up position (A). Lower your chest to the ground, hop your legs back in and jump laterally over the dumbbells (B). Repeat on the other side for 10 reps in total.
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