Many of you know that Suzanne (@workoutnirvana) and I conspired to swap workouts this week. Here’s Suzanne’s plan for me and my plan for her.) We’re both fit, well trained, and love our routines (I’m a high rep girl, she’s a lifter), but we also recognize the importance of mixing it up. (Check out Suzanne’s update on how she fared with my low-weight, high rep routine.)
Suzanne put an UBER SPECIAL Full Body Weight Routine together for me. (Really, you should check out this post – it’s loaded with great information and video demos.) I’m so grateful for her thoughtful attention to the order, exercises, and instructions. I learned so much so much and am reminded that I like to lift! I will definitely be incorporating some straight weight training into my program.
Why This Was Such a Great Idea
- Mix it up: We know we need to confuse our muscles and balance different types of workouts for full body fitness. This was great for me because I don’t typically lift weights and it was a fun way to try new things and get out of my comfort zone.
- Mind in the game: No checking out on this one – I had to refer to my notes and pay attention. I was in the game for the full hour. (Well almost… I had a lapse after the leg press and before the iron cross LOL.)
- Be Accountable: This was the digital version of a workout buddy – with all the benefits of having a plan and sticking to it. The fact is, on my own, I would probably never lift weights for an hour, but I did. On my own, I would have skimped and cheated on a few things, and I didn’t. On my own, I would have given up on the cable machine adjustments and gone to something that I was more comfortable with, but I didn’t.
- It was fun: I don’t always think about workout as fun, but the planning and plotting and anticipating this one was F-U-N. I don’t know about you, but if there’s fun involved, I’m more likely to do it!
Play by Play Recap – 60 Minute Full Body Weight Workout
Warm Up on the Elliptical. The routine called for 5 minutes, but I threw in a few extra because it felt so good (and I was a bit scared to move on).
Walking Lunges w Weights (15 lb dumbells) – I was careful with this one and am always cautious at the start of a routine. This definitely got my heart rate up and I could totally feel my legs working at the end of each set. Conclusion? That was plenty of weight for me this time around 😉
Leg Press (2×45 lb plates + 2×35 lb plates = 160 lbs) – I did leg press earlier this month with less weight, so I was confident that I could safely bump it a bit. This is a great glute burner (I hope that’s what I was supposed to be feeling). (We originally had deadlifts in this spot, but since there are other back exercises, I went for Suzanne’s option of doing these instead – besides, I’m at the gym – I can’t do these at home, right?)
Calf Raises – Confession #1 – I forgot them! I was so excited to get to the iron cross and barbell I spaced out (I guess I checked out for part of the game and forgot to check my list LOL).
Iron Cross (5 lb dumbbells) – I LOVE this exercise! Suzanne cautioned about the weight, so I stuck with 5 pounders. I busted out 8 reps comfortably – maybe I could have gone higher? But for the first time, I was playing it safe.
Superset: Bench Press (Olympic barbell + 2×10 lb) & Single Arm Rows (25 lb). I was really excited about this one and found a stranger to “spot” me on the first one – I did the next 2 sets by myself quite comfortably. Bench pressing with the bar made me feel strong! He told me, “You know you can do them with dumbbells.” I smiled and thanked him, thinking, “Yeah, but I’m mixing it up! I’m doing the big bar!” At first I thought I could go heavier on the rows, but I’m glad I didn’t. Supersetting these 2 exercises was PLENTY challenging in terms of the intensity & strength. I was plenty fatigued by the 3rd set.
Superset: Flies (15 lb dumbells) & Two Arm Row on Bosu (60 lb cable). The routine called for the crossover machine, but I got approval from Suzanne to do dumbbell flies (I’m short and can hardly reach the high handles on the crossover). I spent some time finding the right cable machine and handle to do the the two arm row – and CONFESSION #2 – I totally chickened out on the Bosu. I just didn’t feel comfortable enough – dang it! Instead, I encouraged another girl who was struggling on the Bosu, so I’m counting that for something.
Superset: Bicep Curls (40 lb cable) & Tricep Pressdowns (50 lb cable). Home stretch people – ha! I was very awkward with trying adjust the machine and handles, but I stuck with it and didn’t quit. Supersetting biceps and triceps is always a killer and that weight was plenty challenging – thank you very much.
Abs x 3 Sets: Hanging Leg Raises (15), Decline Crunches (15), & Reverse Crunches (15). I gotta say, I was tired at this point and I don’t do a lot of traditional ab work, so this was hard! But I was determined to stay strong, so I breathed and grunted through a few of them….
Cool Down: I was tired, but felt good. I walked for a few minutes on the treadmill and enjoyed leisurely stretches on the mat.
So how am I feeling? My muscles are tired, my body is hungry, and my soul is energized – so this was a success!