“I’m not breaking a sweat,” he said Sunday as we sat on the couch, talking about what adjustments we wanted to make to our workout plans moving forward. We had finished the TRX 8-Week Program and, while there were things we loved about it, there were things we felt could be improved upon. David was absolutely right in that intensity was an issue that would need to be looked at as neither of us were experiencing much muscle failure and getting that “you just got hit by a truck” feeling when finishing up a workout. After an hour in the workout room, you kind of need to feel a bit like you’ve had your ass kicked – otherwise, you question whether you’re doing it right.
So, with things like duration, intensity and muscle failure in mind and his words ringing in my ears… “I’m not breaking a sweat”… I sat down yesterday to come up with a new, improved 8-week program for us. We need to put in the effort, no matter how hard, in order to get results and I am starting the week motivated and excited for a fresh, new program. In coming up with a new workout plan, a few things were key.
1. I need more cardio and more intense cardio. My workouts in the past, the ones most effective in achieving weight loss, involved three days of conditioning with some cardio and two days of just full-tilt, intensive cardio sessions. I decided I needed to find a way to go back to that.
2. We can’t schedule workouts for weekends. We just won’t workout with any regularity on weekends. Our weekends are our time to enjoy time off from work, relax, run errands, etc. and workouts consistently got shelved. They say the best workout is the one you do and you have to be realistic about what you will and will not do. Rather than miss workouts, it is far better simply to schedule rest days for those days.
3. Workouts need to be varied, both to stave off boredom and to keep muscles confused. They have to be challenging but not impossible so I have to take into consideration each of our physical limitations.
With these things in mind, I put on my “personal trainer” hat and went to work. I scoured the internet, looking at workout plans on reputable websites and got ideas. I nailed down what muscle groups will be target each day, then got out my deck of TRX exercise cards and started matching muscle groups to workout days. For each day/muscle group I came up with a Workout A and Workout B, which can be alternated each week for variety and muscle confusion. I organized each workout day to keep the intensity up, keep us moving. After a few hours of research and organization, I was pretty proud of what I’d come up with, I gave it a name I’d hoped would prove true: “Workouts to Kick Our Asses.” But would it stand up to the “Sweat Test?”
David had to test Monday’s Workout A with me in a motivational/supervisory capacity as I’m nursing a strained back. It was a fun experience for me to continue playing “trainer” for the night but it was also helpful as it gave me a chance to observe the workout in action from an objective standpoint. David powered his way through Pistol Squats, Crossover Lunges and Hamstring Curls. It wasn’t long before I saw it… the first drop of sweat beaded on his forehead. As he lied down on the exercise matt for Marching Bridge, smearing sweat across the floor, his hairline damp and his legs slick with sweat, he had the look of a kicked dog in his eye and I knew I’d done good. Workout A was a success and, given that I’d planned each workout with the same considerations in mind, I am confident that these workouts will, indeed, kick our asses – kick them into shape!