It's been two months now since I devised and started my last gym/cardio program - Tabata Time - and I think it's time for a change.
I've not really followed my previous program too closely, but rather used it as a guide. I found I was often too busy or couldn't be bothered to go to the gym twice a week, and I've been adding a lot more running into the mix instead of being a slave to the cardio equipment in the gym. I have however stuck to the weights part quite well, except for dropping the lunges every now and then as they were having too much of an impact on my running on the first few days that followed.
This new program is once again, deemed as a guide for myself, but this time with a concentration on strength. I don't want to bulk up too much, but I do want to increase my strength as this will definitely help with the running and when combined with a bit of plyometrics should help me "float" a lot better.
So my plan is as follows:
Workout 1: Chest & Back
- 1x 6-10 Incline Flyes (pre-exhaust)
- 1x 1-3 Incline Dumbell Presses
- 1x 6-10 Straight Arm Lat Pull Downs (pre-exhaust)
- 1x 6-10 Reverse Grip Lat Pull Downs
- 1x 6-10 Deadlifts
Workout 2: Legs & Abs
- 1x 12-20 Leg Extensions (pre-exhaust)
- 1x 12-20 Leg Press
- 1x 12-20 Standing Calf Raises
- 1x 12-20 Situps
Workout 3: Shoulders & Arms
- 1x 6-10 Dumbbell Lat Raises
- 1x 6-10 Bent Over Dumbbell Lat Raises
- 1x 6-10 Reverse Grip Pulldowns
- 1x 6-10 Tricep Pressdowns (pre-exhaust)
- 1x 3-5 Dips
Now this needs some notes to explain my intentions...
- Each rep is performed in a controlled manner over the full range of motion. No jerking, yanking or using momentum.
- Each set is only done to momentary failure. No more. No less.
- Each weight is picked to try and ensure I reach the point of momentary failure within the specified range. If the weight it too light, I'll keep going until I reach momentary failure and increase the weight next time. If too heavy, lower the weight next time, unless I fall within the specified range.
- Some of the complex movements are preceded by pre-exhaustion exercises. This is to try and work as many muscles in as little time as possible, without over-exhausting any of the smaller ones.
- When a pre-exhaustion exercise is used, there is no rest between the end of it, and the following exercise. All other rests are "until I feel ready for the next exercise" length rests, but no more than 5 mins.
- Each workout will occur every 4 to 7 days.
- If I'm feeling creative, I may bung in some running specific plyometric exercises between sets too.
This should keep all workouts quite short and sweet and I should feel good, maybe even exhilarated, after with the feeling that I could do more. The idea is not to tire myself out, just stress the muscles into adapting by increasing strength.
Of course, I'll then be running on the other days of the week. I'm still experimenting with that I'll do on the running days, but will aim to put some sort of structure in place on that side of things soon.