Quick and Dirty HIT Workout #1



I finished up my day at the gym yesterday and I thought that I had time to get a full workout done. I was mid-warm-up when my phone went off. The good news? It wasn’t an emergency. The bad news? I needed to get going—fast. I looked at the clock, I looked at myself, and I looked at my program. I had about 15 minutes.

Years ago, I might have thought that there was no point in even starting. But now I have the tools to make 15 minutes work for me. I know how to push boundaries and maintain muscle mass with only a few minutes. The tool I chose for this particular day was HIT training.

I used a bastardization of Arthur Jones’ High-Intensity Training (HIT—not to be confused with interval training). Jones was a tough-as-nails iconoclast who created the Nautilus line of machines. He also once pulled a young Arnold Schwarzenegger out of a car and told him to shut his yapping trap.

Arthur Jones: would you have messed with him?

A few considerations:
* Table stakes here are legitimate effort. You truly have to go to failure. Part of the deal is to push mentally as well as physically. Don’t expect something fast AND comfortable.

* Failure should ideally happen within the 15 to 25 rep range. But that definitely doesn’t mean stop when you hit 25. Push your boundaries. EDIT: that rep range applies to standard reps. For tempo reps (as above), 8-15 reps will typically do. Again, though stop when you’re truly done—not when you hit a specific number).

* This can’t be the only thing you do. I recommend pulling this out maybe two or three times a month.

* Bring heart rate up
* Work on your biggest movement issue (hips, shoulders, etc.)
* Some kind of squat mobility
* An easy/low-level push-up variation
* An easy/low-level push-up variation
* A light set of squats
* A light set of dumbbell presses
Time: ≤10 minutes

A1) Tempo squat (3 seconds down, 3 seconds up)
B1) Tempo dumbbell bench press (2 seconds down, 2 seconds up)
C1) Dumbbell row on bench (fast but with controlled lowering)
D1) OPTIONAL: 5 minutes of light aerobic work (treadmill, bike, etc.)
E1) Hamstring curls (machine or on stability ball)
F1) Push-up variation
G1) Curl variation
H1) Dead bug variation

Time: ~15 minutes

Again, this is one set of each. Choose an exercise, push your boundaries, and move on.

This whole thing should take about 25 minutes. If you absolutely must shorten the warm-up, at least get a light set of your first three exercises in.

Got questions? Need guidance?Join the discussion here.

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