By Rachel Debling
Just because you don’t have access to a gym doesn’t mean you can’t have a body that looks like you do. Any at-home workout can be made even more effective with some subtle adjustments. Follow our lead, and even workouts you have been turning to for years will take on a whole new level of difficulty. (Keep in mind that this particular workout is designed to be tough as it is, so make sure you try it a couple of times before applying any tweaks.)
Burn The Most Calories Possible
• Decrease your rest between sets. Doing a workout as a circuit as opposed to straight sets (where you rest between every set of every exercise) can make a huge difference in keeping your heart rate elevated.
• Don’t stop moving. Instead of cutting your rest, try moving around between weighted exercises: add light jumping jacks or burpees to ensure your body never stops burning.
• Rearrange your workout so you do your multi-joint moves at the beginning, like squats and chest presses, and your single-joint moves, like curls and extensions, at the end. This way you’ll perform the exercises that require the most effort when you’re still fresh and able to do as many reps with as much weight as possible.
Gain More Muscle
• Increase your range of motion. Using a higher bench for step-ups or performing walking lunges instead of stationary ones will make you move farther, which helps target smaller auxiliary muscles and takes you out of your comfort zone.
• For one set, try partial reps: do some of your reps from the bottom point to the middle point, then from the middle point to the top, and finally finish off with an equal amount of full reps.
• Speed it up, then slow it down: perform an explosive one-second rep, holding at the top, and then slowly lower for three seconds. (Sounds easy, but you won’t think so the following day!)
Carve A Six-Pack
• When doing any exercise, brace your core. This doesn’t mean flex your abs or hold your breath, however — think about depressing your shoulder blades to lift your chest, and your core will automatically be activated (which, in turn, will help you perform your exercises more effectively and safely).
• Stand up when doing upper-body moves. You will automatically have to engage your core to ensure that your torso stays upright.
• Utilize a ball. Stability balls, especially when properly inflated, make great core-engaging platforms to sit on when doing presses, curls, and extensions.