Your Workouts Reviewed: Fast Paced Mixed Circuit
Our experts assess a sample one-day mixed circuit training routine.
Everyone's got a workout of their own—your "go-to" routine. But is your routine good enough? We asked our Men's Fitness Facebook friends if they had a killer routine to share and subject to the scrutiny of our readers. The big catch? Our team of training experts also review it, critique it and tweak it if necessary.
|Caleb Allen Men's Fitness Facebook Friend|
"Here's a sample of one of my circuit training routines" Clean press 30 sec. Inverted row 30 sec. Jump squats 30 sec. Walking lunges 30 sec. *perform twice >>>REST 1:30 Bench press 30 sec. Box jumps 30 sec. Resistance band curl 30 sec. Burpees 30 sec. >>>REST 1:30 Pull-ups 30 sec Power cleans 30 sec Med ball slams 30 sec Bicycles 30 sec
Expert Assessment #1
|Rob Sulaver C.S.C.S. is the owner and founder of BandanaTraining.com and the trainer in our Transformassacre Part II. Follow Sulaver on Twitter @BandanaTraining and Bandana Training on Facebook|
Pros: "Solid cardio strength routine. Good variety. Challenging but reasonable work-to-rest ratio. A good mix of exercises that help create systematic fatigue without localized fatigue—exactly what this type of workout is all about." Cons: "The workout is relatively, um, abbreviated—14 minutes (as writen). Cardio strength routines don't need to be an hour, but 14 minutes is pretty damn skimpy. Give yourself a little more rest (2 minutes) and do each circuit 3-4 times. NOW WE'RE TALKING!!! (Progress up to this if it seams unreasonable). Also, be sure to keep your overall routine balanced. For example, you have a resistance band curl but no tri-specific work. For every push, you should do a pull. For every bi, you should do a tri. For every ab, you should do a lower back. If anything, cardio strenght routines are a good time to emphasize your weak points. I'll give you a hint: your abs and biceps AREN'T your weak points." Comments: "Cardio strength routines are wonderful for jacking up your heart rate, getting lots of work done in a short time, shedding fat, and developing work capacity. If you're looking to build muscle, this isn't your ideal routine. And if you've done this (or something similar) for more than 5 weeks, this routine isn't for you. But other than that, amp it up and rock it out cowboy!"
Expert Assessment #2
|Dan Trink C.S.C.S., CPT is the Director of Personal Training Operations at Peak Performance NYC and the trainer in our Transformassacre Part I. Follow Trink on Twitter @TrinkFitness.|
Pros: "Metabolic circuits like these are a bad-ass way to drive up work capacity and torch body fat. Plus, with so much work getting done in such a short amount of time you are getting a great cardiovascular workout that is much more fun than plodding along on a treadmill. You have some of my favorite exercises in here such as the clean press, lunge, squat, pull up and power cleans—all big 'bang for your buck' movements." Cons: "The biggest problem with this circuit is exercise order. Movements like the power clean are very technically demanding and you are at much higher risk for injury when you perform them when fatigued. And I have to imagine that by the time you get to them in the third circuit you're pretty wrecked. Also, I know these 'everything plus the kitchen sink' programs are very popular right now and you will definitely feel accomplished if you survive it, but workouts like this will not get you any stronger and are not really designed to put on lean muscle mass. So unless you are a guy that already carries around a good amount of muscle and just needs to shed fat, this may not be the best program for you." Comments: "Getting in a huge variety of movements may be entertaining but it's not really efficient. By really working on developing strength and technique of several key movements (cleans, snatches, presses, squats, deadlifts and pull-ups to name a few) you are setting yourself up for years of progress and gains. Metabolic circuits are great to add in either for a training phase or as additional work a couple of times per week, but they are not the answer to making steady, long term progress in the gym."