Metabolic Conditioning, Shorter Workouts with a Bigger Payoff

Posted: March 31, 2013

Hello Time Challenged,

If one of the “reasons” (excuses) you use for not working out is time, then metabolic conditioning is for you. I am talking about a big payoff with muscle building AND fat burning, in a short workout. Most likely shorter than your time spent in the gym if you do work out, and short enough to get you into the gym or into purchasing some home equipment if you are still using the time excuse. If you think that the longer you work out, the more calories you burn, wrong. If you think that an hour of cardio is more of a calorie burner than weight lifting, wrong again. What I am talking about is about a 30 minute session of intense, short bursts of power. A type of workout that has been shown to burn calories for around 24 hours after the workout ends. A workout that uses your own bodyweight, some dumbbells, kettlebells, or barbells, or any combination of them all, and a mind ready to engage your body into some maximum calorie burning. Better yet, the benefits are a combo of strength, cardiovascular endurance and calorie burning in one killer workout! A workout that can be done in 30 minutes from warm up to cool down.

Many studies have been done to argue the old point of “which is better”, cardio or strength training? This takes them both, wraps them into a workout that can be done 3-5 times a week, and the payoff is a changed physique. If you are in the gym, doing the same moves over and over, try this. If you want to get stronger muscles, better oxygen uptake, and better endurance, this is for you. If you are just bored, and like a fast paced workout, this has your name on it!

I will give you an example of a workout that I have done. You can change up the amount of weight you use. This is for my endurance level, and strength level. The idea is that you don’t want much rest between exercises, just enough to almost catch your breath and go right into the next exercise, maybe 20 seconds.  You want to use weights that are challenging, but not so heavy that you can’t make it through a fast paced set. Here is my recent workout. Repeat the workout 3 X.

Warm up

25 Jumping Jacks
15 Bodyweight Squats
10 Push ups
25 Jumping Jacks
15 Bodyweight Squats
10 Push ups

Neck rolls, arm circles, hip rotations, wrist circles, downward dogs, to cobras

Work out

15 Kettlebell Swings w/ 14 kg Kettlebell
10 Squats bar only (45 lbs)
10 Bent Over Rows w/ 25 lb dumbbell
10 Chest Presses w/ 15 lb dumbbells
15 Kettlebell Swings w/ 14 kg Kettlebell

Rest 1 Minute

15 Bodyweight Squats
10 Jump Squats
10 Push ups
10 Dumbbell Stiff Legged Dead Lifts w/30 lbs ea.
10 Bent Over Rows w/ 25 lb. Dumbbell

Repeat this entire workout 2 X.

This workout will have your heart rate racing, your body dripping with sweat, and your muscles burning. All good. The best part is that this Metabolic Conditioning workout will payoff with a calorie burning whallop that will last, even when you are sitting on the couch tonight watching a movie!

Make your workouts fun, and challenging. This is the way to always have time. This is the way to see how your body can keep adapting to less time between exercises and to adding more weights. You can find many ways to change this up. I prefer to alternate from lower to upper body exercises. By going from lower to upper, you heart rate is pumping blood to your body at a much harder rate, making you breath harder, and get better results. There is actually a term for why this is so great. EPOC, exercise post oxygen consumption. That is a fancy term for the oxygen your body burns way after you are done with this plan. Answering the question of “which is better?”

One of the most often asked questions from people is “how many hours do you spend in the gym?”. I always say “Ha!, never do I spend more than an hour.” Since unfortunately some old injuries have been haunting me for the last 3 years, I cannot lift heavy any more. I at one point in my life could squat 185 lbs at 50 years old! Only for 4 reps, but I only weigh 109 lbs!!! Now, on a heavy day I can lift 95 lbs max, and then have to take 4 days off to recover from SI joint pain. So, that’s ok. I have changed up my routine to give me the maximum payoff in the minimum time. My body still feels pretty good and looks good too. Of course I change my workouts regularly, and always strive to be stronger and recover more quickly. That is done with diet, supplements, and rest. The best workout days for me are the ones like the workout above. I am spent. I feel greatly exhausted and like I really put my body to a challenge. I feel alive, and don’t feel I am re-injuring any body part.

Isn’t that the point of all of this? To feel alive and to keep on going?

In Health, and Strength,

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