By Rachel Debling
Photos By Noel Daganta
There are so many products and gizmos out there that claim to do the job of two. While some deliver on that promise (honey and peanut butter in the same jar, for starters), others fail miserably on both accounts (shampoo and conditioner in one, we’re looking at you).
But in the realm of exercise, you can get multiple benefits in one easy-to-use package. By performing resistance exercises — using bands, kettlebells, or even your body weight — back-to-back with little recovery, you can build strength while burning fat, all at the same time and without devoting countless hours to the gym.
Move It To Lose It
In fact, in a recent article published in the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal the effectiveness of high-intensity circuit training was examined, with the authors noting that, “Body weight can provide an adequate training load as long as it results in sufficient aerobic and resistance training intensities.” What they mean is that moves like push-ups and body-weight squats or squat jumps can spur change in your body, as long as the number of reps and the way you are performing them (i.e. pace) are challenging enough to fatigue you. Furthermore, they noted that circuit training can help increase fat loss more so than traditional aerobic exercise — think running or step classes — because high-intensity training with short rest periods releases more growth hormone, a powerful fat-fighter, into the blood.
Brad Schoenfeld, MSc, CSCS, author of The M.A.X. Muscle Plan (Human Kinetics, 2013), agrees, especially when it comes to the trisets — groups of three exercises performed in succession — this workout prescribes. “Trisets help to increase training density — the amount of work performed per unit of time,” he notes. “Greater training density increases the energy cost of exercise, thus enhancing fat loss.” Not only that, the addition of jumping motions can lead to gains in both muscle power (due to fast repetitions that promote a stretch shortening cycle in the muscles) and increased metabolism.
Talia Terese, a California-based IFBB Bikini pro, formulated and demonstrated the moves you’ll see on the following pages, and has included some of her all-time favourite exercises in the mix.
In each triset, move right from one exercise to the next, resting only after the third exercise is completed. Ensure that you select a weight challenging enough to fatigue you by the last few reps in each set, and when performing your plyometric jumping motions keep the pace fast to raise your heart rate sufficiently.