PLEASE NOTE: We are undergoing a name change. Unleashed Training is now Sprint Ninja. We still offer high quality strength and conditioning along with personal training, with our specialty being sprint training.
A gym fitness program is any program that is based around training in a gym environment. Gyms refer to the generic structure of health facility such as Fitness First, Planet Fitness, Virgin Active etc. What is not intended to refer to is specialist training facilities such as personal training studios, CrossFit boxes, powerlifting gyms etc.
Gyms are everywhere and the average person looking to stay in shape will usually revert to one of the gyms in their area. These gyms have their limitations and many of the members don’t receive expert instruction, which leads to thousands of people treading water, getting nowhere.
But it doesn’t have to be that way for you. You will learn a very simple, very effective way to structure a gym fitness program.
Training Frequency: 3-5 days per week.
Training Duration: approximately 40 minutes from start to finish.
Hypothetical Training Goal: This gym fitness program is designed to cater to the masses. The training goal here will be fat loss, moderate muscle gain, increased cardiovascular fitness and overall health.
Equipment Needed: A barbell bar, weight plates up to triple your body weight (for when you get that far), dumbells, floor space, flat bench and cardio machines (the number one choice here would be the rower, either a water rower or concept 2).
Workout Split: Full body strength sessions and intervals. Only one session will be written here, which is to be followed each time you train. Make some of the minor suggested changes each workout to keep the program fresh and effective.
The gym fitness program you are about to learn has been written with simplicity, efficiency, time management and effectiveness in mind. This is designed as a template and can be altered to meet individual needs. However I strongly recommend sticking to this program structure.
Check you progress by taking initial measurements of arms, thighs, chest/bust, waist etc. and through fitness tests such as a 60 second row or a maximum squat test with a given percentage of your body weight.
This gym fitness program has been designed with a specific structure. The order of exercises are not random, they are laid out in that order due to their effect on the nervous system and on your acute hormone responses.
If you are a complete beginner then I recommend you learn the movements flawlessly before adding significant weight. Each set should finish with a struggle, but NOT until complete muscular failure.
As you decrease the reps each set on certain exercises you will increase the weight.
Rest 45-60 seconds between sets.
Deadlift for 10-7-3 reps [Alternatives: Single leg deadlift, snatch high pull, kettlebell/dumbbell swing. Hip dominant exercises].
Back squat for 8-8-8 reps [Alternatives: Split squat, lunge, front squat. Knee dominant exercises].
Barbell bent over row for 12-10-8 reps [Alternatives: pull-ups, seated cable row, dumbbell row. A pulling movement targeting the back and biceps].
Dumbell bench press for 12-10-8 reps [Alternatives: Push-ups, weighted push-ups, barbell bench press. A pushing movement targeting chest and triceps].
Standing military/overhead press for 7-7-7 reps [Alternatives: Overhead dumbbell press, high incline dumbbell bench press. Overhead pressing exercises].
Interval training, to be performed straight after the strength session. Choose either one or the other within each workout, no need to do both interval protocols in the same workout.
The goal with the intervals is to perform absolute all-out effort for the duration of the interval. This component of the gym fitness program will seem very short, however it is more than adequate. Don’t be tempted to do more.
It is recommended and preferable to perform the intervals on the indoor rower, however they can also be done on a bike, treadmill, cross trainer etc.
3 x 1 minute
Tabata: 20 seconds of max effort then 10 seconds of rest. Do a total of eight intervals.
The preceding program is a very basic, simplified training template to follow. It is recommended that you follow it consistently and always aim to lift more and go harder gradually from one session to the next.
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YOUR COACH – Chris Lyons
Chris Lyons is an experienced strength and conditioning coach, having trained athletes of all ages and levels since 2002. Chris specialises in coaching athletes for speed and power specific to fast-moving sports such as rugby league, rugby union, soccer, Aussie rules football etc. Since 2002 Chris has conducted close to 15,000 hours of training and coaching directly with athletes and members of the general population. From this experience comes Sprint Ninja, based on tried and tested training methods combined with up to date research. Chris continues to challenge himself not only as a coach, but also as an athlete, competing in sprinting events, strongman and Olympic-style weightlifting.