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Enhancers to a Workout

Posted on August 4, 2017 at 7:40 AM

I've seen a lot of fads come and go in physical culture. What goes out in the forties, fifties, sixties, seventies, and eighties comes back in the Millenium. The process repeats itself over and over again. One thing though I learned a few years ago from watching Mike Chang workout videos was the use of "enhancers" or finishers to jack your heart rate up during a workout.


Now I never bought into the six pack short cuts program. Mike and the other trainers were obviously on PED's. But, I did learn things from watching Mike's videos. His workouts were mostly circuit style weights and bodyweight, and then you did a calisthenic like burpees to jack the heart rate up. In theory what this does is boost the metabolism to burn fat while at the same time you are strength and muscle building.


Does that work? Like anything else it does to an extent. I like training that way because you can get a good bit of work done in a short period of time and it boosts your endurance and stamina for other activities. Burpees are a little hard on my lower back. Fortunately there are exercises I can do. Squat thrusts from a pushup position are one. Jumping jacks are another. Once again you find what is friendly to your body. 


So how does this work? Set your routine up into circuits of two to four exercises. Once you are through with the circuit, do X number of burpees, squat thrusts, jump ropes, jumping jacks etc. This morning for example, I did two different circuits for the hips and thighs, and after each did 100 jumping jacks for 600 total. I was able to get a lot of work compressed into a very short time limit. If I were going to do burpees I'd go sets of 10-20. If For squat thrusts sets of 20-30. For jump ropes, sets of 100 skips. Of course that is me. You can do more, and you can do less. You work it to your level of fitness.


In fact, a good way to train with calisthenic style exercise is to drop set the numbers. Let's look at jumping jacks. You have six circuits. You could go 100, 80, 60, 40 and 20 by the time you are through. You don't exhaust yourself and as the numbers go down the intensity of the effort on your circuits goes up. It is a good way to train with high numbers. One of the classic mistakes I've made over the years with pushups, knee bends etc. was to always go all out on every set. Do your first couple of sets hard and then taper off.  


So give it a try. Find a joint friendly calisthenic to do between circuits or sets of exercise. Try it for a few weeks and see what difference it makes.



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1 Comment

Reply Prowler
5:05 AM on August 9, 2017 
I like Jumping Jacks. Burpees and other explosive exercise are hard on the joints.

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