Friday, July 31, 2009

Home Gym Workout

Recently I had Branda Polk and our good friend Michelle over for a workout in our make-shift home gym in the garage. I've known Branda for a long time now and she's a fab trainer and friend. Michelle and I met through her, really hit it off and we get to train together about once a month via one of Branda's tough concoctions!

Now to put our workout together. We had some parameters and a few limitations. They both wanted to work on the TRX, so we had to include that. We only had 1 hour total. There were 3 of us. Michelle does not have kettlebell experience yet. It was blazing hot. My space is small and my equipment limited. How to get in the most work, expose them to the TRX and keep us all moving? Hmmm...

Not fancy, but it works!

I penciled out a workout that would be sure to include every major muscle group. I was excited so it turned out to be 12 different exercises! Then I arranged the exercises into 4 mini-circuits. Each mini-circuit would have 3 exercises, one for upper body, one for lower body and one for core. Since there were 3 of us, we would do stations for time. This means we each started out on one of the three exercises, worked for a set amount of time, then rotated until we'd done each exercise twice. We did this for each one of the circuits. Allowing for transition, it timed out for about a 48 minute workout. Not bad.

Equipment included the TRX, the ValSlides, the 20 pound soft-sided medicine ball, an upright roman chair for leg raises, kettlebells and dumbbells and the GymBoss.

The TRX Suspension Training System is a unique system that can be used anywhere, but we keep it hanging from a beam in our garage. We have a rubber mat underneath for foot traction and you can easily get a full body workout with it alone. Now I'm rethinking the word easily I just put in that sentence because it's challenging, but you know what I mean. For this workout we concentrated on inverted rows, atomic push-ups, side plank and balance lunges using the TRX.

Look at that wall that needs to be painted. I'm calling the builder.

Oh wait, he is the builder.

I love our 20 pound soft-sided medicine ball by Dynamax. It's huge! We used it for slams, which really works your core and arms, not to mention it is a great stress reliever! We found this big one at MuscleDriver USA. For a smaller version that is more practical check out my GFWK Amazon Store.

The ValSlides are too cool. Let me tell you guys, they are not just for girls. One of the last times I used them I was sore for days. You can use them in all sorts of ways under your feet or under your hands. This is one type of unstable surface training that works. They are one of the most inexpensive things you can add to your equipment and they are totally portable. For this we used them to do a lateral type lunge with a punch. While one leg works to keep from sliding, you slide the other leg back at an angle and throw a punch! I've also used them under my feet for all types of squats and lunges, mountain climbers and walking with my arms in plank. Under your hands you can do a run (like a bear crawl), extended plank, and other core work. Crazy fun!

Since Michelle had not used kettlebells before, I adapted a few moves I've learned from Anthony Diluglio of Art of Strength from my Providence DVD. We held a kettlebell goblet style for squats. We also did single-arm overhead presses, but sitting on the floor with legs stretched out wide. You should try this. It totally takes your lower body out of the equation so you can't use it for assistance. Really tough. Then we used them for tactical lunges. These are reverse lunges in which you pass the kettlebell under your bent knee to the other hand each time you lunge. This lunge is challenging not only for balance but also because you have to go deep if your arms are short in comparison to your torso. Not that mine are, I'm just saying...

Jimmy got the upright roman chair for Father's Day. It includes bars for pull-ups, dips and padding on the back so you can do leg raises. It's really been a helpful, compact piece of equipment to have around. We found it at Dick's Sporting Goods.

We got in a great, fun workout with three people literally in a double garage. Oh, I forgot to mention that until you've used the TRX a few times it's tricky to get your feet in it right for certain moves when you're on a timer. So we brought Jimmy out to be the atomic push-up helper boy. He even made us all protein shakes afterwards. Gotta love that guy.

What type of workouts do you do at home? What equipment do you use? Would love to hear your ideas and suggestions.

This post uses affiliate links with the exception of the link to Branda Polk. Branda is a personal trainer and friend. Please see my disclosure statement.

Related Post(s):

TRX Fit Deck

5 Minute Fitness

K is for Kettlebell!

Fitness Gear Review in Men's Health Mag

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