It's a Circuit!

Marketing is a wonderful thing, as a PT I have had to learn how to sell myself, my knowledge and my services to my prospects in the aim of converting them into clients as well as keeping my existing clients’ long term too. This was a steep learning curve for me, and I’m still learning, adapting and evolving!

Circuit training

Anyway, that’s not the point of this blog. 

The current environment has changed the face of the fitness industry overnight, literally! Home workouts have become a necessary thing for most people wanting to workout but not expose themselves to the risk of covid-19. So how can we achieve our fitness and training goals with the limited space and equipment we have available at home?

At the time of writing gyms are to reopen in Scotland in a couple of weeks, boot camps and training outside have been available for a few weeks now and I believe they will continue to be in high demand as many people will not want to return to a gym environment under the current circumstances.

HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training), HIRT (High-Intensity Resistance Training), CrossFit, Metafit, Insanity, Les Mills Grit & Body Pump. These are are all excellent training methods and products, and anyone following any of these workouts will definitely benefit. Some would even say that the first two just describe the rest which I won’t argue with.

These training ideologies, workouts, training methods, products or whatever are all great but they are basically circuits that have been marketed a certain way, packaged and sold as a distinct product that will help you achieve your training goals. HIIT and HIRT do elicit specific physiological adaptations when done correctly and will definitely improve strength and fitness whilst reducing body fat. 

CrossFit encompasses the above with the addition of a competitive element built into the training regime with the goal of competing in the CrossFit Games. Metafit and Insanity are an entirely bodyweight workout that are short and intense while the Les Mills Grit & Body Pump are class-based workouts that involve low to moderate resistance and bodyweight exercises. 

This is just a basic outline, there is a lot more to all of these training methods and CrossFit, in particular, has built a huge community around the ‘Box’ style gym and competition set up. 

In today’s fast-moving ‘I want it now’ world a more multi-functional and multi-benefit way of training seems to be the way to go. Being able to improve strength, endurance, functional fitness and hit personal training targets and goals along the way all whilst spending less time in the gym is a challenge that is demanded of PT’s, gym owners and coaches and if we want to keep our clients long term then it is a challenge we must meet.

But what if you want to do Crossfit without the competition and Olympic Lifts, you like Metafit but want to lift weights too, you need to lose weight and also want to get stronger and fitter but have limited time to train? Well, you can at home and at any gym if the equipment is available and you have the know-how? 

If you are not returning to your local gym and home workouts are for you then understand that you can have a great long term training plan that will help you to achieve many health and fitness goals. Yes, you will need to get a little creative at times, you should probably invest in some training equipment too, have a look at this guide

circuit training

Basically, just move and get a sweat on. Yes, it really is that simple. Choose a number of exercises, put some kind of time or repetition challenge in there and get started. For example, I really like the bodyweight workout, Broken Burpee;

Squats, Squat Thrusts, Press Ups, Rocket Jumps, Full Burpees

You can set your timer for 20s work, 10s rest and complete as many reps of an exercise within the work time frame as possible before taking a 10s rest and moving on to the next exercise. Or you could complete set reps for each exercise but work on reducing your rest time between efforts e.g. 15, 12, 10, 8 and 5 reps of each as quickly as possible keeping good technique throughout.

There are so many options that this one workout can be adjusted and adapted so that it lasts for months and you would still be making progress, the only issue would be boredom so mix up the exercises. You could add resistance equipment like bands, kettlebells or dumbells to give exercise variety and further training stimulus.

circuit training

If you think of your training in this way then you will make progress and achieve your goals. Try to incorporate big, whole-body movements as much as possible. This will help in two ways. First, you will have a bigger metabolic impact because you are working more muscle with each movement, and second, because the resistance equipment available will generally be lighter than in the gym you will need to increase the intensity to stimulate muscle growth and strength gains.

Any good PT or coach should be able to put a programme together for you that will encompass all the training methodologies you enjoy and help you to hit your targets too. Strength training, endurance, sports specific and body conditioning are all achievable just be sure to use a good technique with your lifts!

Get Coached provides online workouts and training plans that are designed for home workouts as well as in the gym. They are goal orientated and without fuss or fanfare. Just good old fashioned hard work, sweat and effort.

It’s not rocket science and snake oil, it’s using the basic exercises and movements correctly, efficiently and in the correct combinations to provide the right training stimulus that will see you achieve your training goals, whatever they may be.

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