Take Your Training to the Next Level

People often gravitate towards either weight training or cardio and strongly prefer one over the other. I usually find that men in particular love the weight room but dislike cardio. Now is the time to consider how much more you could get out of lifting when you combine it with an intense cardio workout like spinning on a regular basis.

Spinning trains the major lower body muscles (our “prime movers”) as well as the support muscles (our “stabilisers”). High-cadence spinning also develops endurance, speeds the body’s recovery, and eliminates lactic acid buildup. By riding at XYZ 2-3 times per week, you can reap the rewards of these benefits and give yourself the extra edge you need at the gym to push heavier weight and build strength and power more effectively.

Most of you reading this article, however, are probably already addicted to indoor cycling. But is your workout routine well-rounded enough to get you into the best shape possible? To achieve your ideal body shape, it is critical to supplement your spinning workouts with weight training.

XYZ tailors each ride to include dumbbell exercises to tone our arms and shoulders. This style of “high-rep low-weight” training focuses on building muscular endurance, toning our arms and shoulders, and actively stretching our muscles. However, there is more work to be done!

This is where the weight room enters the picture. We can build strength and power in our muscles — while improving our form on the bike — by doing these simple exercises:

Front lunge: Strengthens thighs and hamstrings — the larger muscle groups in our legs — as well as the smaller stabiliser muscles. Keep a slow tempo to protect the knees and ankles.

  • Find a long hallway or room where you can take at least 8 big steps before you reach the opposite wall.
  • Holding 5-10kg dumbbells in each hand (dead weight with arms relaxed), take a deep lunging step forward. While in the deepest part of the lunge, your back leg should bend low, with your knee nearly touching the ground, and your front leg should be bent as well.
  • Step forward with the back leg and lunge again. You have now completed one rep.
  • Complete 15 reps (2 lunges — right and left leg — equals 1 rep). Rest for 45-60 seconds. Then do 2 more sets of 15 reps for a total of 3 sets.

Split squats: Strengthens the thighs, glutes, and stabiliser muscles around the knees. Start slow, mind your posture, and add 5-10 kg dumbbells in each hand only after you feel stable enough to support the added weight.

  • Find a step approximately 10-15cm high. An aerobic stepper that you’d typically find at the gym works perfectly.
  • Place one foot on the step; this foot remains flat on the step. The other foot remains on the ground, approximately one normal-sized step back; you are balanced on the ball of this back foot, with your heel lifted.
  • Squat so that the knee of the leg on the step stays in line with and moves over and past your big toe.
  • Repeat 10 times on the same leg. Switch to the other leg and repeat 10 times. You have now completed one set. Perform 3 sets total.

Plank: Strengthens lower abdominals.

  • Start with 20 seconds in a regular plank (push-up pose), then 20 seconds in a right side plank, then 20 seconds in a left side plank.
  • Perform 3 sets; 1 minute per set.

Let’s all make our bodies as fit as possible by committing to a balanced workout routine that includes both weight training and spinning at XYZ!

Posted Jul 1, 2015

Tagged: Ros's Blog

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