Bodybuilders became runners, team players became solo athletes, and weightlifting equipment cost more than gold; sounds familiar, right?
The past few months have no doubt challenged our motivation to train, eat healthily and maintain routine in our daily lives. Gyms are slowly beginning to open their doors in some countries, but not all of us will feel comfortable returning to them just yet, meaning at-home workouts will remain as the new norm for a little longer.
But, whether you're training in the gym, your garden or living room - there are many ways in which you can achieve your goals, increase your fitness levels and boost your mental health.
We've got four different types of workout variations, including how to do them, their benefits and simple examples for you to try.
Although the difficulty of these workouts can be increased by using weights, they aren't a requirement! So don't get hung up on the fact that you have no dumbbells...
What are the four workout variations we're going to talk about?
Recovery, Flexibility & LISS
AMRAP, aka 'As Many Reps (or rounds) As Possible' is an approach to training with a dedicated time limit, but no rep limit.
AMRAP's workouts can be built in many ways, depending on your goals, but the fundamentals remain the same.
To complete an AMRAP workout, multiple exercises can be combined to target different elements of your strength and fitness. AMRAP workouts are also great for mixed ability groups of people, as everyone can work through the time limit at their own pace.
The concept is simple, complete as many reps (or rounds) of the circuit as possible within the specified time cap.
Here's an example of a simple 12 Minute AMRAP workout:
15 Bodyweight Squats 15 Burpees 15 Crunches 100m Run (repeat for 12 minutes)
EMOM, aka 'Every Minute On The Minute'. This one is all about testing your fitness as you become more fatigued through the rounds.
The challenge is to complete one or several exercises every minute during the set time frame. This can be used to help increase strength and muscular endurance through repeating heavy lifts; alternatively, bodyweight/running exercises can be incorporated into an EMOM to work more on your cardiovascular system.
Although it's another simple concept, the EMOM pushes your ability to continue completing the start weight/rest/distance as you fatigue over time.
As your body becomes fatigued, it will take longer to complete each exercise, resulting in less rest before the next minute starts.
Here are two 15 minute EMOM workout examples:
15 Minute EMOM 3 Deadlifts @ 90% 1RM
(repeat each minute)
15 Minute EMOM 5 Air Squats 5 Burpees 10 Lunges
(repeat each minute)
You've probably heard of this one...
HIIT aka 'High-Intensity Interval Training' - is exactly what it says on the tin.
The basic concept for HIIT is built around a 'work/exercise' time, and a 'rest' time, these can be adjusted depending on the exercise, relative effort and individual ability.
Exercises used during HIIT can vary, and have no real limit! Have more of an abs focus, maybe legs? Or even throw in some plyometric exercises such as squat jumps, lateral ski bounds and box jumps.
A more complex type of high-intensity interval training can sometimes be referred to as circuit training, where multiple exercises are completed, and various interval timers are set (see example 2 below).
Our bodies are known to be extremely good at adapting, so, be sure to make it more fun and mix up the work and rest times across your HIIT workouts to keep your body guessing!
A key thing to remember when performing HIIT is to keep your 'work' times intense, as close to your maximum effort as possible.
Here are two examples of HIIT workouts:
10 Rounds 25s Sprint 95% of max effort 35s Fast Walk (rest period)
5 ROUNDS 30s Jump Squats 10s REST 30s High Knees 10s REST 30s Crunches 10s REST 30s Push-ups 90s REST
Recovery, Flexibility & LISS
After putting your body through intense, highly demanding workouts - it's essential that you give it time to rest. But, being a couch potato isn't the most effective way to recover.
A study in 2004 showed a positive effect on physiological and psychological recovery following the utilisation of low-intensity exercise as part of a recovery period.
Low-intensity steady-state (LISS) exercise such as walking, slow yoga flows, and mobility can all help speed up recovery rates, reduce injury risk and increase overall performance and readiness.
So, what we're saying is, in order to recover and prepare for your next sweaty session, you need to stay active, in different ways.
Here is an example of a recovery rest day:
40min Steady Walk 20min Slow Yoga Flow/Mobility Work
What is your favourite type of workout? Will you be trying any of the above? Let us know in the comments below!
If you're looking for more workout inspo and tips, download The Gymshark Training App for iOS.