At times we see a gym full of weights and machines, and feel overwhelmed by what to do with it all. Sometimes, the best thing to do is make the most out of one piece of equipment and create an environment to work your whole body without having to go all over the gym. We are only limited by our creativity.
For many gym members, the main focus is creating a routine. This can also be the cause for frustration and headaches. It is important to have a plan of how you are going to work out, but if there is no room for adjustment you will find yourself annoyed by disruptions of other members doing their routine. Adapting the workout to keep you going is much more important than keeping the same workout as the last time.
Your body will respond better if you keep it guessing. Have a theme in mind of what your goal is for that workout, but do not be limited to a selected, few machines. By understanding the correct motion of the exercise, the appropriate intensity that fits your goals, the right amount of rest, and the tempo during the exercise, you’ll be able to create many exercises virtually anywhere by just getting a little creative.
Here is an example of utilizing a piece of equipment to get a total body workout. All you need is a workout bench:
1. Bench pushups – place your hands slightly beyond shoulder-length apart on the bench. Keep your feet on the floor and your body flat. Lower body down until your elbows are bent at ninety degrees. Raise your body back up until your arms are straight at the elbows. Repeat for twelve to twenty repetitions
2. One arm dumbbell row – keep one hand on the bench and one hand holding a dumbbell. Have the foot that is on the same side of the hand that is on the bench about a foot away from the bench. Place the other foot about three feet away from the bench. Be sure to keep your shoulders parallel with the floor throughout the entire exercise. Raise the dumbbell as high as you can while keeping your elbow close to your side. Lower the dumbbell without letting your shoulders move. Repeat and switch sides.
3. Tricep dips – sit on the bench with your palms on the bench and your feet on the floor. Keep your palms on the bench, but bring your body off. Lower your body until your arms are parallel to the floor. Rise up by straightening your arms. Repeat.
4. Step ups - stand in to the side of the bench, facing the bench. Depending on your fitness level, this could be done with or without resistance. Step up on the bench and stand on the bench. Step down with the same leg that you stepped up with. Alternate legs and repeat.
5. Reverse crunch – Lye down, face up on the bench. Grab the bench with your hands above your head. Have your legs ninety degrees at the knees. Raise your hips and lower back off of the bench. Slowly lower your hips just before they touch the bench and rise back up. Repeat for fifteen to twenty repetitions.
Of course there are many other exercises that can be done with a bench however this is an example of how to utilize a small space and very little equipment and still manage to get a total body workout. By following this concept, you’ll be able to maximize your body’s potential and the workout facility where you train.
For more workout ideas or questions regarding health and fitness, please contact Certified Master Trainer, Jerod Langness, at 24 Hour Fitness, 719-244-9532.