Friday, November 20, 2015

Creating a circuit workout, inspired by Fuel Up. Go!

Lately, I’ve had to switch my workouts to early mornings.  However, last night I managed to go after work instead of while the world was still sleeping.

I’ve missed two weeks of HIIT and circuit classes (sorry Eric!) due to these life and work commitments – I’m seriously missing the classes and the people.  Since Fuel Up. Go’s classes are offered Mondays and Thursdays, and last night was Wednesday, I decided to create my own little circuit.  

I did a nice warm up run on the treadmill, and then did the following exercises for 45 seconds each.  At each station, do as many reps as you can in the time allotted.  I completed the entire circuit 3 times, and after each of the stations below, I ran on the treadmill for 45 second increments at an 8:30 pace.  

I don't know about you, but I had a really tough time trying to figure out what else to do at the gym, other than simply run, or cross-train, or do bicep/tricep curls and I have to say, most of the workout was inspired by the circuit and HIIT classes I've been taking with Eric and Lauren from Fuel Up. Go!  Seriously, these trainers have changed my life and my workouts.  If you live in, or are ever in the Milwaukee area, you should check them out.  Classes are pretty cheap too.  I cannot WAIT to get back to class on Monday!

*While I understand that most of these are photos of machines you've already seen, I've learned that visual aids make it easier to learn what workouts to do.

Station 1 - arm swing pec flies (this may not be the technical phrase for it, but that's why I call em').  They work your arms as well as your pectoral muscles.  The toughest part for me is controlling my arms to reach the middle at the exact same time.

Station 2 -  Leg extensions.  This machine really works my quads and strengthens my knee range of motion.  After my ACL reconstruction, I take no chances when it comes to strengthening my knee mobility and function.

Station 3 - sit on the ball and roll down your back until the ball is just between your shoulder blades, with your feet planted shoulder width apart and your legs bent at the knee.  Keep your core and your glutes engaged to prevent yourself from arching.  Lift the weights from your ears to almost full arm extension.

Station 4 - Lay flat on your back on the weight bench (front bench in photo) and place your hands on either side of your head, gripping under the bench.  Engage your core and repeat leg lifts, lifting your hips off the bench as your toes point to the ceiling.

Station 5 - Jump rope.  You can modify this to left leg reps, right leg reps, and both legs.  I often switch to left leg because again, I am trying to strengthen my knee as much as I can.

Station 6 - Ab curls.  Place your feet under the pads, and slowly roll backward.  Engage your core and roll upward.  *This is one of my favorite abdominal exercises.

Station 7 - Lunges.  Pick up a dumbell in each hand, and repeat forward lunges, switching legs each time, while curling the opposite arm up while the opposite leg goes forward.

Station 8 - Vertical knee raisers.  Place hands on the grips in front of you, and lift your legs, straight out, side to side, crunching up.  *This (other than planking) is my most difficult ab exercise, and the one I would like to see the most improvement).
***In the interest of full disclosure, while I am taking the course required by National Association of Sports Medicine, I am not yet a certified personal trainer, and the above exercises are mainly those that I was taught by certified personal trainers...please proceed accordingly.***

Thanks for reading!  I'm hoping to post a new, fun, change-it-up workout each week!  In the meantime, I'd like to also thank Eric and Lauren at Fuel Up. Go! for inspiring my workout and for pushing me these last few months.

Happy Friday! 

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