4 X 10 pull ups, with strict one minute recovery
4 X 10 deadlifts @ 100kg (2-3 minute recovery)
T Bar Row – pyramid (10@45kg, 8@50kg, 6@55kg, then back down. 2 minute recovery).
Shoulder Shrugs – 4 X 8 @30kg each arm. 2 minute recovery.
First proper back day (i.e. including deadlifts) in a while. Lower back was trembling a little afterwards! At least I had my new protein shaker, courtesy of NutriBullet to help me out. It’s like i’m sponsored! (See pic above). My grip held out too.
This is pretty much my go-to back day. Pull ups and deadlifts are integral so I try to maximise time and effort spent on them.
4X20 50 kg back squats (max 2 minute recovery)
4X20 50kg bench press (max 3 minute recovery)
4X8 50kg military press (max 3 minute recovery)
Bicep barbell curl declining pyramid from 50kg (each set to failure, decrease each set by 10kg, 2 minute recovery)
One thing I always do if I fail to complete a set is drop the weight or the amount of reps per set immediately. Rather than see it as a failure, i try to see it as a success as it shows i’m working at my max. Rather than risk real damage or throw in the towel, drop the weight or reps (not both) and stay at max work rate.
3 X 12 pull ups followed by 3 X 10 chin ups (1 minute 30 recovery)
6 X 3 dragon flags (1 minute 30 recovery)
4 X 10 pistol squats (both legs) (1 minute 30 recovery)
The pull up, chin up routine (#PCP) is good for a bicep pump. When properly working out in the gym, I usually start my full arm day with this routine.
I’m now up to doing 18 dragon flags per session. When I move up to 20 reps, I will switch to 5 X 4 per set.
4 X 20 back squats (45kg) (1-2 minute recovery)
4 X 20 bench press (45kg) (1-2 minute recovery)
4 X 20 Romanian deadlifts (1-2 minute recovery)
4 x 10 military press (2-3 minute recovery)
The focus of this workout is endurance. I’ve struggled to crank up the weight with my squats, so I’ve recently taken it back to basics, switching to lower weight, higher reps, and closer attention to squat form.
For the military press on the other hand, the focus remains strength (lower reps, higher weight, longer recovery). The m-press is my fave shoulder exercise as it’s a total body exercise. Form is very important as it’s a higher injury risk movement. #impresswithyourmpress
4 X 12 pull ups (1 minute 20 recovery)
4 X 8 pistol squats (both left and right legs) (2 minute recovery)
4 X (5 basket hangs, straight into 5 hanging leg raises) (2 minute recovery)
4 X 20 raised leg bench tricep dips (1 minute 30 recovery)
I really rate pistol squats. When you don’t have access to a gym or a barbell, they’re my next best alternative. I’ve had surprisingly bad DOMS after sets of these. If you struggle with balance like I do, gently hold onto something for support, but watch your form! https://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/main/popup/name/pistol-squat
I’ve just started working on basket hangs and they’re tough! Ross Edgely rates them as a hard-hitting ab exercise. At the moment, I’m finding the form difficult to master, so I add in leg raises on top to make sure my abs are still getting fully worked.
Without access to a gym, triceps can be hard to work. Bench dips are the answer. Rather than countless reps, I raised my legs by sitting my feet on a second bench, forcing me to go lower into the dip.
WORKOUT OF THE DAY
- Eccentric negative pull ups: (4 X 6 (5 second descent)) with dragon flies (6 X 3) as recovery.
- Tricep superset: 4 X (30 X Two handed bodyweight bench dips, straight into 20 X 10kg dumbbell lying single arm side skull-crushers) (near full recovery between sets).
- Calf burn up: 2 X (alternative right single leg calf raises, two footed calf raises, left single leg calf raises) (no recovery between legs, each set to failure, near full recovery between sets)
Eccentric (or negative) reps focus on the ‘down’ part of the exercise, which can be just as difficult and gain effective. Dragon flags were listed by Ross Edgely (CEO of TheProteinWorks) as one of the heaviest hitting ab exercises. I’ve started incorporating both of these into my workouts and I’m noticing differences immediately.
My tricep superset was surprising tiring given that it’s mostly low weight stuff. Note: the dumbbell exercise here is essentially single arm skull crushes, with elbows pointing outwards rather than towards feet.
The calf burn up is of my own invention. Each set is to failure. The focus should be on the right and left single leg calf raises. The two leg calf raises should be seen as an interval / recovery. Within each set, you go until you can’t do anymore, alternating legs when tired. Take a long rest, then repeat. The lactic build up is pretty bad as time under tension is high and recovery is low. The good thing is, you can do this anywhere!
Correct form for negative pull ups: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8xNrImzdwI
Correct form for dragon flags: https://rossedgley.com/product/19-page-ab-guide-and-workout/
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