The Best Exercises For Busy People

(Short Read) The best two exercises to do when you’re short on time.

If you’re like me and most people, sometimes life happens and you can’t train the way you want to. Luckily, there are exercises that you can do that won’t take up too much of your time. The first one is what I consider the most valuable exercise. It’s sprints!

If you’re busy and don’t have time to do a full workout, I recommend going out to a field and getting in some sprints. If you haven’t sprinted in a while and you’re concerned about your injury risk, start with hill sprints. Hill sprints are so challenging that you won’t be able to move fast enough to get injured.

It doesn’t take long in a sprint workout for you to feel your hurt rate going up and the muscles in your body tense up.

Gym Exercise For Busy People

If the weather sucks or you’re not able to do sprints, you can try it’s close cousin, the kettlebell Swings. The kettlebell swing provides almost the same exact benefits as the sprint. The only differences are the sprint has a higher neurological impact and they strengthen the ankles. One advantage of the kettlebell swing is grip strength development. A great Kettlebell Swing workout can take as little as 5 minutes. Another great thing about Kettlebell swings is that the kettlebell can be used anywhere, even in the comfort of your home. Below is a Kettlebell swing workout I’ve used in the past as a workout finisher but it can also be used by itself.

  • Do as many Kettlebell swings as possible for 30 seconds
  • Rest 30 seconds
  • Repeat for as long as you want or need

I think what makes these workouts so time efficient is the speed of the movements involved. Good things happen to your body when you do fast movements.

Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

Explosive Fat Burning Workouts

This article is about the fat burning workouts that have worked for me.

I love strength training. Nothing beats the thrill of challenging your body through heavy compound lifts. As much as I focus on strength and performance, I also value my appearance. It feels good to look in the mirror and be happy with what you see. That’s why emphasize fat loss in my fitness routine.

Burning fat will also reveal your hard earned muscle from lifting weights. Doing finishers at the end of your workout will help you burn a ton of fat. Sometimes the best way to train for fat loss is doing a separate fat burning workout.Here’s a list of my favorite fat burning workouts:

400 to 100 M sprints:

I mentioned this workout in a previous article of mine but it’s so effective I have to mention it again. I learned about this from an article written by legendary strength coach Charles Poliquin. In addition to burning a ton of fat, this workout has been found to support your muscle building hormones like HGH and testosterone. There are 4 sets of sprints in this workout. Each sprint goes varying distances

400 meter sprint

Rest for 4 minutes

300 meter sprint

Rest for 3 minutes

200 meter sprint

Rest for 2 minutes

100 meter sprint

Done

Kettlebell Swing Workout: The workout is as simple as the name says. It’s a workout in which you only do kettlebell swings. To make it even simpler, you do 30 seconds of swings followed by 30 seconds of rest. Sometimes you can rest longer if necessary. The goal is to get at least 10 minutes of swings at the end of the workout. It seems like a short amount of time but it makes a difference.

Hill Repeats: I mentioned this workout in a previous article. This is another simple workout I do. The hill I run on is about 20 yards long. In this workout, you’ll sprint up the hill as fast as possible and walk down the hill. I normally do 3 sets of 7 sprints with a minute rest in between.

Funnest Fat Burning Workout : The funnest fat burning workout is playing a sport. When you’re playing a sport, you’re constantly moving at different speeds and in different directions. Your body is working hard and you’re often pushed further based on what your opponent or teammate is doing. Playing sports also helps you make friends and build relationships. My go to sport is pickup basketball.

Closing Thoughts: The reason I do these specific workouts for fat loss is because they compliment my strength training. Kettlebell swings and sprints work a lot of the same muscles used in lifts like squats and deadlifts. They also help me with my ability to generate power, which makes a big difference in weight lifting and sports performance.

My Love For Hill Sprints

Hill Sprints are great for your body.

I have a deep love for hill sprints. They have a reputation for being brutal but everyone should do them. Hill sprints are tough but worth it. I’m very grateful to hills because they allowed me to get great workouts when I had limited gym access. Two years ago the gym I  was going to closed down and moved to a new location. The new location made it difficult for me to go as often as I used to. Weeks before that, I began doing hill sprints to spice up my workouts.

With limited access to weights, I had to be creative with my workouts. I completely replaced my squat and deadlift days with hill sprints. You’d think I’d get significantly weaker but I felt great. Squats and deadlifts are two of the top ways to build strength but hill sprints helped me cope without them. The early part of my hill training was rough but like any training method, your body adapts. Once my body adapted, the magic happened. Two times a week, I would go back to those hills. I incorporated them in my training from July to January. With hill sprints, I had as much leg muscle as when I was using weights to train my legs. I enjoyed all the benefits hill sprints provide for me.

Hill Sprints Burn A lot of Fat!

Hill sprints are an excellent way to burn fat. Famous fitness consultant, Jason Ferrugia once said ” aside from proper nutrition, there’s nothing more efficient than hill sprints for fat loss”. From my personal experience, this is 100% true. I’m always at my leanest when I do hill sprints on a weekly basis. Sprints have a reputation for being a fat burning exercise. When you add the resistance provided by the hill, amazing things happen. The hill makes your body work harder. The harder your body works, the more calories it’ll burn. Hill sprints also target several muscles like the quads, hamstrings, calves, and core. Your arms will get a workout too since they’re used to propel your body forward.

Hill Sprints are The Perfect Compliment to Weight Lifting:

Hill sprints will help you in the weight room for a number of reasons. The leg muscles developed through hill sprints will help your performance in leg exercises such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts. Hill sprints also improves work capacity which will allow you to get more work done in less time. Increased work capacity means you require less time to rest in between sets. Another benefit of hill sprints is they bring a lower injury risk in comparison to regular sprints. Your body isn’t moving fast enough to be at risk of pulling a hamstring.

Mental Benefits of Hill Sprints:

Hill sprints offer countless mental benefits. The most prominent benefit is the development of mental toughness. It takes mental toughness to repeatedly push your body even when you’re fatigued. Believe me, your body will be fatigued when running hills. Another mental benefit is the dopamine rush you experience. It’s good for your mind to see yourself repeatedly achieving your goal ( the top of the hill) despite the challenging trail. This also reinforces the notion that you can achieve your goal regardless of the challenge in front of you.

If you want to transform your body you should add hill sprints to your routine. I’m a big believer that incorporating sprints and weights in your routine will yield fantastic results. You should check out my hill sprint routine as well as other sprint workouts I’m experienced with Sprints, Sprints, and more Sprints.

I always feel triumphant after several hill repeats. There’s something satisfying about overcoming fatigue and a difficult path to reach my goal. At the end of my hill sprint workout, I raise my hands up in triumph as I stand on top of the hill.It gives me an extra sense of confidence in myself. I feel like a champion when doing it and that confidence transfers to other areas of my life. Running hills transforms my mind and body.

 

Photo credit: <a href=”https://visualhunt.com/author/3e9858″>Michael 1952</a> on <a href=”https://bestrunningshoes.com/”>Best Running</a> / <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”&gt; CC BY</a>

 

Finish Strong and Burn Fat!

In order to burn body fat, you have to be able to finish strong. The fat in your body is most vulnerable towards the end of your workout. Whether I was focused on building muscle, gaining strength, or recovering from injury, I always made a conscious effort to keep my body fat at a low percentage. Obviously diet is the most important component but you need the right exercises to maximize your fat loss results.

All my gym workouts include a fat loss finisher. I don’t use machines because I feel like I’m limiting my body. I like to do finishers that provide functional benefits. Here’s a list of the finishers that have worked for me.

Jump Rope Finisher: My jump rope finisher is simple but effective. I usually do 200 repetitions at a casual pace followed by an all out burst. I repeat this sequence til I get up to 1000 moderate pace repetitions followed by an all out burst. This can take 5-10 minutes depending on if you want to continue past the 1000. There’s no rest.

Kettlebell Swing: In my previous post, I mentioned the awesome benefits of the kettlebell swing Get an Awesome Body With Kettlebell Swings . My kettlebell finisher involves me doing 20 rep swings, followed by a plank in which I do ten deep belly breaths. I repeat this sequence til I get at least 100 swings. You can add more repetitions if your aerobic capacity allow it.

Jump rope/ Kettlebell Swing Combo: This finisher is a form of Supramaximal Interval Training (S.M.I.T). This form of interval training is different than High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). S.M.I.T involves you repeatedly moving at an intense rate and then resting completely. I usually do 20 intense kettlebell swings followed immediately by jump roping at maximal speed. I keep jump roping til I miss a rep. I like to place myself far from the gym water fountain. After I do a set, I walk to the water fountain to get a sip of water and when I walk back I do another set. You can also rest for a minute. I continue til I do 4 sets. One word to describe this finisher is ferocious.

Bag Work: You’ll need boxing gloves to do this finisher safely. I basically throw random punches on a heavy punching bag for 1 minute. I like to switch between slow jabs and fast power punches. I also switch my boxing stances from traditional to south paw. Switching your movement prevents your body from getting comfortable. Constantly challenging your body means more calories burned.

Photo on <a href=”https://bestrunningshoes.com/”>Best Running</a>

 

Get an Awesome Body With Kettlebell Swings

This article is about how kettlebell swings will transform your body.

If Kettlebell Swings are the only movement you do for the rest of your life, you’d have a functional and attractive body. I’ve heard stories of people losing several pounds and dropping layers of fat just by doing 10-20 minutes of Kettlebell Swings per day. The kettlebell swing was a key movement in Tim Ferris’ book the 4 Hour Body. It’s also held in high regard by prominent strength coaches like Dan John and Bret Contreras.

As you know I’m a big supporter of sprints  Sprints, Sprints, and more Sprints. Unfortunately, some people aren’t well suited to perform sprints whether it’s due to injury, problems, or other reasons. Kettlebell Swings provide the same benefits as sprints minus the risk of hamstring pulls or joint strain. In fact, when I had a knee injury four years ago, I relied on Kettlebell Swings as my form of cardio. The Kettlebell swings actually contributed to my recovery due to the work it did on my posterior chain. They allow me to get a great cardio workout during the winter.

Kettlebell Swings and Fat Loss:

The kettlebell swings are so effective for fat loss because they work every muscle in your body. From the posterior chain muscles like glutes and hamstrings to the upper back and shoulder, the kettlebell swing is the total package. To reap the fat loss benefits of kettlebell swings, it’s best to do a high volume. You can also use kettlebell swings as a super-set with other exercises.

Kettlebell Swings and Performance:

Fat loss benefits aren’t the only benefits of swings. Since the posterior chain ( the backside of your body from upper back to calves) are critical to sprinting and jumping, kettlebell swings can make you a better athlete. By strengthening these muscles, you’ll also improve in various lifts especially the deadlift. The kettlebell swing is such a major complement to the deadlift for a number of reasons. The kettlebell swing is a hinge movement just like the deadlift. The kettlebell swing strengthens the same muscles that are highly utilized in the deadlift. The kettlebell swing teaches you how to move your hips in an explosive manner. Explosive hips will allow you to have a more fluid motion on your deadlifts. The kettlebell swing will strengthen your grip due to you having to hold the weight for several reps while still moving at explosively. Your core will get a good workout too because you have to stabilize your spine throughout the whole movement.

Kettlebell Swing Workouts:

I’m usually on and off with my usage of kettlebell swings but I plan on making a conscious effort use them at least once per week. There’s one protocol that has worked for me. I learned it on t-nation.com. The protocol involves doing 20 swings followed by a plank in which you’ll do ten deep belly breaths. Then you keep repeating this til you do at least 100 swings. There’s no rest in between.

Another protocol that I want to incorporate takes 5 minutes. In this protocol, you’ll do as many swings as you can for 30 seconds, followed by 30 seconds on rest. You repeat this sequence til the five minutes are up. I like this protocol because it holds you accountable. You can’t just settle for a certain number of reps. By being timed, you’re challenged to get up as much as possible, making the workout more intense. I plan on going back and forth between this protocol and the one I learned on t-nation.com to keep my body guessing.

 How To Do Kettlebell Swings:

The first thing I’ll tell you is that the kettlebell swing is not a squat.

  1. Stand with your legs slightly wider than shoulder width. There will be a kettlebell in between your legs.
  2. Pick up the kettlebell and grip it tightly with both hands. Your palms should be facing your body.
  3. Lean forward while maintaining a neutral spine. Slightly bend your knees and hips.
  4. Your forearms should be in contact with your inner thigh in the bottom position.
  5. Drive your hips forward when pushing the kettlebell forward. All your momentum should be from your hips and hamstrings. Your knees and hips should be straight at the top position and the kettlebell should be at shoulder height.
  6. Keep your arms straight and your core braced throughout the movement.

There are countless videos on YouTube if you want a more visual instruction.

Bonus: If you want to take the kettlebell swing to another level, do a partner assisted kettlebell swing. This variation makes the move a lot more difficult. The way it works is when you’re at the top position, your partner will push the kettlebell down. The challenge comes from taking the momentum of the downward swing and quickly moving the kettlebell back up. The partner assisted kettlebell swing will give you a significant boost in athleticism. Craig Marker of StrongFirst states that the partner assisted kettlebell swing can provided similar benefits as the depth jump. If you don’t have a partner, make a conscious effort to make the eccentric portion of the swing as explosive as fast as possible.

Source Link: https://www.strongfirst.com/get-benefit-depth-jumps-without-jumping/

If you want a lean muscular physique in addition to greater athletic performance, add the kettlebell swing to your routine. The swing will make you look good and feel good. Always remember that it’s important to have good form.