WORKOUTS

Strong and Lean 12-Week Workout: Week 11



DAY 3: STRENGTH TRAINING - DYNAMIC PULL MOVEMENTS WITH WEIGHTS

WARMUP
Exercise Muscles Reps (Goal) Weight (Goal) Reps (Actual) Weight (Actual)
SET 1
Cable Side Rotators Shoulders (rotators) 15 each arm Light
Single Cable Handle High, Alternate Swim Strokes, Wide Pull-Down, and Squat Legs, Back 10 full sets each side Light
WORKOUT SEQUENCE 1
SET 1
Gravitron Speed Neutral-Grip Pull-ups Back 12 75% Rep Max
Speed Hanging Side Twist Obliques Abdominals (Obliques) 20 N/A
Speed Single-Cable Reverse Flys Back (rear delts) 12 each arm 75% Rep Max
Speed Hand-to-Feet Stability Ball Pass Abdominals 20 N/A
Hold Squat Power Single-Cable Wide Pull-Downs Legs, Back 12 each arm 75% Rep Max
SET 2
Gravitron Speed Neutral-Grip Pull-ups Back 12 75% Rep Max
Speed Hanging Side Twist Obliques Abdominals (Obliques) 20 N/A
Speed Single-Cable Reverse Flys Back (rear delts) 12 each arm 75% Rep Max
Speed Hand-to-Feet Stability Ball Pass Abdominals 20 N/A
Hold Squat Power Single-Cable Wide Pull-Downs Legs, Back 12 each arm 75% Rep Max
WORKOUT SEQUENCE 2
Exercise Muscles Reps (Goal) Weight (Goal) Reps (Actual) Weight (Actual)
SET 1
Speed Smith Machine Single-Arm Inverted Pull-ups Back 12 each arm N/A
Speed Alternate Ducks Under Smith Machine Bar Legs 16 N/A
Speed Twisting Dumbbell Curls Biceps 12 75% Rep Max
Alternate Front Lunge Hold with Quick Alternate Dumbbell Rows in Low Position Legs, Back 12 75% Rep Max
Jump Scissor Switches Legs 40 N/A
Dry Water Freestyle Kicks on Back Abdominals 60 seconds N/A
SET 2
Speed Smith Machine Single-Arm Inverted Pull-ups Back 12 each arm N/A
Speed Alternate Ducks Under Smith Machine Bar Legs 16 N/A
Speed Twisting Dumbbell Curls Biceps 12 75% Rep Max
Alternate Front Lunge Hold with Quick Alternate Dumbbell Rows in Low Position Legs, Back 12 75% Rep Max
Jump Scissor Switches Legs 40 N/A
Dry Water Freestyle Kicks on Back Abdominals 60 seconds N/A


EXERCISE DESCRIPTIONS IN BRIEF
Exercise Overview
Cable Side Rotators With a towel rolled in your armpit, use the cable system set at your stomach level or a stretchy tube attached to a pole or doorway. Hold your elbow at a right angle and slowly move your hand from across your stomach towards the outside of your body, then bring hand back to stomach and repeat.
Single Cable Handle High, Alternate Swim Strokes, Wide Pull-Down, and Squat Attach a single handle to the high setting on a cable machine. Stand facing the machine with your feet hip-width apart and grasp the handle in your right hand, with palm facing downward. Bend your knees slightly and press your hips back in a power stance, keeping your back flat. Bring your right arm straight down in a swim stroke or ski-pole motion, keeping your elbow straight and your palm downward. Bring the arm down until it is in line with your back and slightly behind your right hip. Next, allow your arm to return to the starting position, following the same trajectory so that the movement comes entirely from your shoulder. Again from the starting position, bend your right elbow and bring it back and to the side, until your hand and the cable are next to your shoulder, keeping your palm facing front as if you are doing a wide pull-down. Open your elbow and return your arm to the starting position, and then sit into a deep squat, bending your hips and pressing them back behind you as you sit deep into your heels. Keep your back flat, and your arm extended with the palm still down. Repeat the entire sequence for a total of 10 repetitions on the right side, and then switch the handle to the left hand and repeat for another 10 reps.
Gravitron Speed Neutral-Grip Pull-ups Stand on the platform of a Gravitron machine, holding the parallel pull-up handgrips in each hand, with your palm facing inward in a neutral position. Step off of the platform and onto the foot rests, allowing your body weight to bring you down until your arms are fully extended. Quickly and powerfully pull yourself vertically upward while keeping your elbows close to your ribs, retracting your shoulder blades, and opening your chest. Try to keep your entire lower body (hips, knees, ankles) stable and still as you lift to ensure that you isolate your back muscles. At the top of your motion, your head should be above your hands, your chin level with the bars, and your neck in line with your spine. Your shoulder blades should remain retracted. Reverse motion and lower yourself with controlled speed back to the starting position while keeping the movement in the muscle; do not simply let go or allow your elbows to lock. Repeat the pull-up 12 times, exhaling on the flexion (the upward movement) and inhaling on the extension (the downward movement).
Speed Hanging Side Twist Obliques Grab hold of pull-up high bars or any elevated hand grips with your palms facing forward or in toward each other (whichever you prefer), such that your arms reach directly up from the shoulder and your body is hanging supported by your hands. Next, bend your elbows and pull up through your chest and shoulders to engage your upper body. Bend your knees, twisting your hips to bring your knees up and to the left as you swing your feet up and to the right. Lift and twist as quickly as you can while maintaining control. Try to bring your feet up to chest level at the top of your swing. Lift from your lower abs and use your obliques to bring your legs up rather than using your hip flexors. From the top of the lift, quickly lower your legs back to center, going as quickly as you can while maintaining form and control. You will need momentum to do this exercise, but you do not want to end up as a pendulum, swinging out of control. Repeat the exercise the other way, with your knees coming to the right and your feet coming up past your left hip. Continue to alternate, with your feet and knees always in opposing directions, for a set of 20 twisting obliques.
Speed Single-Cable Reverse Flys Set a single cable at chest height on a cable machine with a single-handle grip attached. Take the handle in your right hand and stand parallel to the direction of the cable (so that you can pull the cable side to side, rather than front to back). Your right arm should extend in front of you at shoulder level, with the palm facing the cable machine. Next, pull your right hand wide in a fast but controlled reverse fly, keeping your arm extended and at shoulder level, until your arm is straight out to the side. Focus on controlled power and speed throughout the movement. Stay very tall and lifted through your upper body, and keep your shoulder blades back and together as you pull. Reverse the motion and, again using a fast but controlled motion, return your arm to the starting position. Without stopping or allowing the weights to touch, immediately begin your next reverse fly repetition. After you have done 12 reverse fly reps with the right arm, switch sides and repeat the exercise for 12 fly presses with your left arm.
Speed Hand-to-Feet Stability Ball Pass Lie on the floor on your back. Hold a stability ball between your feet with your legs extended out along the floor and place both arms over your head. Next, raise your legs quickly up over your body as you raise your arms quickly to meet your feet. At the top of your motion, where your hands meet your feet, transfer the ball to your hands. With the ball now in your hands, quickly lower your legs as you lower your arms back to the floor behind your head. Continue to transfer the ball between hands and feet as swiftly as you can for 20 repetitions. Do not go too fast; only go as quickly as you can while maintaining form and control. Breathe regularly throughout the movement; exhale as your legs and arms rise, inhale as you lower them. Your lower back should remain against the mat throughout the exercise.
Hold Squat Power Single-Cable Wide Pull-Downs Set both arms of a double-cable machine on the highest setting, and attach a single-handle attachment to each cable. Stand facing the machine with feet hip-width apart and grasp one handle in each hand, with your palms facing downward. Next, sit back into a deep squat. As you bend your knees and sit your hips back, be sure to maintain a flat back and engaged abdominals. Keep the majority of your weight back on your heels as you go down, while still applying pressure through the balls of your feet. Push your chest out very slightly in front of you to counterbalance the heavy load on your heels. As you descend into the squat, bend your elbows and bring them diagonally back and down, squeezing your shoulder blades together to bring your elbows behind the level of your back. Stay in the squat as you press your arms diagonally up and forward with controlled speed and power, bringing your arms wide and straightening your elbows until both arms are extended in a straight line with the cable. Keep your arms wider than your shoulders as you do this—your hands will not come together. When you arms are fully extended, pull the cables back down with controlled speed and force.
Speed Smith Machine Single-Arm Inverted Pull-ups Set a bar on a Smith machine at a height midway between your chest and your belly button. Stand facing the bar with your feet shoulder-width apart, and grab the bar with both hands, with your palms facing upward and your elbows bent. Walk your feet under the bar and pull your chest up toward it until you are suspended underneath the bar, with your feet on the floor and your chest near the bar. Drop your left hand to your side, so that you are holding onto the bar with one hand only. Next, use only your right hand to lower down from the top of the pull-up position: Straighten your arm to lower your body away from the bar, until your arm is nearly straight. Keep your feet on the floor, your body flat, and your chest parallel to the bar throughout. As soon as you reach the lowered position, quickly pull yourself back up to the bar by bending your elbow again. Focus on pulling up with as much speed and power as you can while still maintaining proper form. Maintain your flat body position as you rise back to the starting position. After you have finished the recommended number of reps with your right hand, hold in the top position and switch to your left hand. Repeat the pull-ups with your left hand for another set.
Speed Alternate Ducks Under Smith Machine Bar Set the bar on a Smith machine at the height of your chest and stand on one side of it, with your body perpendicular to the bar. Take up a "power" stance, with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees and hips slightly bent, abs engaged, and your hands up in a sparring position, near your chest with elbows low. From the starting position, step wide under the bar and sit low, allowing you to duck under to the other side. Step as quickly as you can. Try not to lean down to get under the bar; instead, keep your back straight and sit deep in a squat as you step under. Engage your center to keep your upper body from dropping forward. Now, duck back under the bar to the other side again, and continue to alternate sides, keeping your steps wide and trying to move quickly as you can from one side of the bar to the other.
Speed Twisting Dumbbell Curls Stand upright with your feet about hip-width apart and a dumbbell in each hand at your sides with your palms facing inward. Stabilize your shoulder blades and squeeze your upper arms tightly against your rib cage so that your shoulders are motionless throughout the entire movement. Next, lift the dumbbells up together in a fast and powerful hammer bicep curl, keeping the palms facing in and the upper arms tight at your sides. Try to lift with speed and control all the way through the arc of the lift. When you reach the top of the hammer curl, twist the dumbbells so that your palms are facing in toward you and lower the dumbbells down in a regular curl. At the bottom of the regular curl, twist the dumbbells back to starting hammer curl position and begin your next curl.
Alternate Front Lunge Hold with Quick Alternate Dumbbell Rows in Low Position Stand upright with dumbbells held in each hand at your sides and your palms facing inward. Now lunge forward with your right foot, dropping slightly through your back knee, and inclining your chest forward over your front leg. Keep your back flat and let your arms hang straight down from the shoulders toward the floor. In the lunge, bring your left elbow directly up and back behind you in a fast and powerful row, while your right arm stays in place. Keep your upper arm close to your body as you lift, rather than bringing it wide, and hold through your legs to keep your balance. From the top of the row, quickly bring your left arm down and, as it reaches the starting position, immediately pull your right arm quickly and powerfully up in a row. Continue to alternate rows for a set of eight, trying to make your motions powerful and continuous. Next, step back out of the lunge and return to the starting position. Now lunge forward with the left foot, and once again perform eight rows, this time beginning with right arm. Continue to lunge on alternate sides, each time with a set of eight rows in the lunge, until you have done a full set of 12 (six lunges with rows on each side).
Jump Scissor Switches Stand upright with feet about hip-distance apart. Place your hands on your head, with your elbows out. Step forward with one foot as you drop the back knee toward the floor. Do not push your front knee past your ankle. Think of lowering down through the back thigh, rather than pushing on the front foot. Reverse direction and, as you push back up, jump powerfully into the air out of the lunge and land with your feet reversed. If you started with right foot forward and left back, you land with your left foot forward and right back, then immediately reverse again and jump so that you land with your right food forward and left foot back. Keep going until you have done a total of 40 alternating jump scissor switches (20 of each leg forward).
Dry Water Freestyle Kicks on Back Lie on your back on the floor and place your hands, palms down, underneath your lower back, just above your hips. Next, lift your chest and shoulders slightly off the floor, so that you can look down at your feet. Lift your feet five inches off the floor, using your abs to hold your legs in the air. Keeping your shoulders and feet off the floor, perform rapid flutter kicks. Keep your range of motion small so that you can maintain speed. Your legs should be straight, so that you kick from the hip rather than the knee. Continue to kick for 60 seconds, maintaining a consistent speed.

EXERCISE IMAGES

Photo Credit: Nicolas Smith