Sometimes I use strength training as my main form of exercise for the day. On those days a strength workout is usually a 30-45 minute, sweaty, panting, full-body affair complete with high intensity exercises that make my muscles quake and my heart rate soar.
Other days strength training is more about maintenance and on those days my routine can be as short as 10 minutes.
Here’s a look at a typical Fast and Efficient Strength Workout, Gracefulfitness style.
Push ups. Slow and steady with tons of focus on form. Push ups are a great warm up exercise. I usually start a little shallow and maybe on my knees then begin to go deeper as my shoulders and back warm up.
- abdominal wall
- neck long and in line with the rest of the spine
- shoulder blades actively drawing together and down the back
- fingers spread wide with weight into the knuckles and fingertips
- front knee never goes further forward than the front ankle
- stable torso-shoulders stay over hips throughout the entire movement
- NO movement in the upper arm during the curl, stabilize from shoulder to elbow
- focus on slowly lowering the weight in the curl, resisting gravity
- just as in the bicep curl, stabilize the upper arms throughout the whole exercise
- shoulder blades slide down the back as the weights move up and down
- lengthen the elbows completely at the top with out locking the joint, triceps work the hardest in the last little bit of straightening
- to keep your knees safe and get deeper in your squat make sure your legs are nice and wide
- think of squeezing your inner thighs together as you stand up
- perfect form in the plank, the body is a long line from the knees or heels out the top of the head
- elbow draws towards the hip rather than straight up
- take a look at your feet while you squat-your knees should never hide your toes. If they do, you need to sit your hips further back. Bending the knees too far forward puts more pressure on them than is necessary and could lead to injury.
- always keep the weights slightly in front of you as you press them overhead to keep your shoulders in a safe range of motion
- draw the shoulder blades down as the weights go up
- think of keeping the spine long from the tailbone all the way out the top of the head as you squat and stand
- engage your core to protect the low back