You’ve had enough time away from the gym and now you’re ready to get back at it. The excuses are gone, you’ve started eating clean and now it’s time to get your workout routine locked down. Before you get started, here are five quick exercises that you can set as benchmarks. Track them to keep you motivated and make notable breakthroughs on your quest to getting back into shape.
Benchmark One: 100 Push-ups
Avoid flaring your elbows out as that can cause a lot of excess pressure on the anterior part of your shoulders. Keep elbows in tight (45 degree angle) and your core engaged. Start out doing sets of push-ups. For starters try 10 sets of 10 and progress from there.
Advanced: Get to a point where you can rock out 100 push-ups without stopping.
Benchmark Two: 20 Pull-ups
If you have trouble performing a pull-up, be sure to use the assisted pull-up machine. For proper technique, lead with your chest keeping your shoulders back while looking up. Drive your elbows to the floor and squeeze your back on the way up. Straighten your arms and breathe at the bottom. Avoid swinging the hips as that takes pressure off of the primary muscles. Start out performing 4 sets of 5
Advanced: Do 20 perfect form pull-ups without any rest or assistance.
Benchmark Three: 25 Dips
If you have trouble performing dips be sure to use the assisted dip machine. To ensure you're using proper form, make sure you keep your chest up tall, bend your knees and keep your elbows directly behind you as you descend. Lower yourself to a 90 degree bend in your elbow. At the top of the movement lock your elbows, squeeze your triceps and breathe. Perform 5 sets of 5 until you reach 25.
Advanced: Do your best to get 25 dips without any rest or assistance.