Circuit training can be one of the most effective ways to getting lean and getting a ripped physique. As a simple definition, this is when you combine highly-intensive aerobics with some form of resistance training which is designed to be followed with a cool down session. The target is to lose the excess fats that have accumulated in the body. Other targets include fitness of the heart and lungs and also for muscle building. When a person says they have been able to complete a circuit, this means that they have been able to complete the prescribed whole cycle of exercises in the training program. The idea behind this is that when you finish a circuit, the next circuit begins when you repeat the very first exercise in the previous circuit. The time span between the exercises that are done in a circuit is very short and usually involves rapid activities like jogging on the spot just to keep your metabolism rate up. As for the program we recommend, there are 5 simple exercises to help you burn fat and get toned with circuit training.
If you are determined and are able to follow all the 3 circuits specified in the program with inclusion of intense warm-ups and cooling down, be ready to use up about 2500KJ of energy, which translates to 600 calories. This is not something bad if you consider that you get your strength back again through cardio training under one hour of the activity. When you are starting this program, you may want to do 1 to 2 circuits. As time goes on, you will be so used to it that you will want to do more. As you advance more, you will incorporate weights and the repetitions will also be. The more intensive it becomes, the higher your metabolism rate, the more the fat loss and eventually the more weight you will lose.
Circuit Training can be done 4-5 times each week. I would recommend that you don’t do more than 3 sessions weekly. On the days that you are not doing training under this program, you can use cardio and weight training to lose weight. This you can do by running, walking or using a treadmill.
It is not uncommon to find people who incorporate aerobics with weights when circuit training. In fact, there is scientific proof that this is more effective as opposed to the traditional way of not using weights (LeMura 2006, Park 2003). There are some programs that make the mistake of having low intensity or using very light weights.
Here are more details about the program:
- Each activity should take approx 15 minutes
- You may need a 6 inch step
- Exercises: arm curls, squats, dumbbell overhead press, weighted lunge, step aerobics
- This can be done in an open space, at the gym or at home
- The muscles that are targeted are the legs, arms, shoulders, abdominals, butt
Circuit Training Program Procedure
- About 15 minutes are needed for each circuit which involves the 5 exercises described above
- The dumbbells used should have weight so that the repetitions that are done on the arm curl, on the upper body exercises and on the overhead press are between 10 and 12.
- The variables of the circuit exercise i.e. repetitions, weight of dumbbell, can be adjusted depending on one’s fitness.
- The circuits can be done at home, in an open space or at the gym.
- Leg exercises are intended to increase the cardio intensity. They include step ups and leg lunges.
- Ensure medical fitness before starting the circuit training program.