Posted on April 26, 2017 by Jenny Cromack

Olympic lifting variations

What would be my favourite ‘go-to’ strength session…So you have 45 minutes, an empty gym (heaven I know…), music blasting, tones of motivation but no programme to follow – what do you do?

If you are ever in this position or you have ever been in this position hopefully this blog about what I would do if I had 45 minutes in the gym will give you some ideas. This session is a full body strength workout and packed full of some of my favourite exercises and in my opinion some of the best exercises you can do.

Why strength training?

Why if I only had 45 minutes would I choose a strength session over a running or any type of cardiovascular training session. Well, here is why:

Weight training is one of the highest energy expending activities you can do, lots of people make the mistake of thinking that strength training makes you look big, muscular and masculine. The truth is for anyone to put on any muscle size at all an extra 300-500kcal should be consumed everyday as well as a full programme of hypertrophic training.

Also from a rehab and prehab perspective strength training massively decreases the chances of picking up an injury or prevents injuries from reoccurring. Although this point comes with a warning that if the exercises are not done with the perfect technique then injury is less likely to be prevented and may even result in injury.

The ‘Essential’ 45 Minute Session

A1. Front Squat (to box) (Squat pattern)
A2. Single Arm Dumbbell Chest Press (Uni-lateral Horizontal Press)
B1. Bulgarian Split Squat (Uni-lateral Squat)
B2. Single Arm Dumbbell Row (Uni-lateral Horizontal Pull)
C1. KB Banded Swing (Explosive Hinge Exercises)
C2. Chins/Lat Pull-Down (Vertical Pull)
D1. Split Position Palof Press (Anti-Rotation)
D2. Stir the Pot (Brace)

A strength session should always work in a rep range between 5-8, sets is very dependent on the time you have available, for the As, Bs and Cs I would recommend 4 sets and then only 3 sets for the trunk exercises at the end. The bracketed bits are for my fellow geeks out there, I would say this is how I choose my workouts for myself or my clients.

So, if you have done loads of Bulgarian split squats recently, this can be changed to anything else that is uni-lateral squat exercise so lunge, overhead split squat etc. And in my opinion that is the best thing about strength training, technically, no two sessions should ever be the same – and variety is one of the keys to success.

So, there you have it, you’ll be stuck for a quick strength workout ever again.