Friday, February 5, 2010

Turbulence Training Transformation Workouts B & C

Here as promised (threatened?) are my impressions of the second two workouts in the Turbulence Training Transformation program.

Workout B is mostly upper body. It kicks off with a tri-set of chin-ups (AMAP), spiderman pushups (AMAP) and vertical jumps (10 reps), then segues into dumbbell bench presses supersetted with inverted rows, dumbbell chest-supported rows supersetted with lateral raises, and finally barbell curls supersetted with lying triceps extensions. If you've been reading my rantings for a while now you know I'm not a big fan of single joint exercises in general and biceps/triceps work in particular, but I guess for a month I can suck it up and do it.

The most fun part of Workout B is the energy systems training at the end. Shuttle sprints! Whee! What you do is, mark off a distance of about 20 feet then sprint back and forth being sure to touch down at the beginning and end points. Keep doing that for 20 seconds, then rest for 40 seconds, then repeat until 8 minutes are up. Simple, but more challenging than it sounds because of all the stop and start and up and down and directional changes. Also excellent functional training for many team sports. And fun!

Workout C, like Workout A, is a fairly balanced total-body routine. It kicks off with a superset of barbell deadlifts (or dumbbell step-ups if you're working out at home and have equipment constraints) and stability ball pikes, 10 of each. The second superset consists of dumbbell split squats and decline close-grip pushups, while superset 3 includes dumbbell rows and 1-leg stability ball hamstring curls. There's just the three supersets, and that's actually a good thing because the energy systems work in this one consists of bodyweight exercises done tabata-style (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off). There are 8 squat thrust cycles followed immediately by 8 front squat cycles, and finishing with 4 sets of 10 jumps, with 10 seconds rest between sets.

My sense is that some women in particular might find this program to be a little upper-body intensive to suit them given that all three workouts include upper body work while only two include lower body and core-intensive training. My personal belief is that this is more of an issue from a psychological standpoint than a physiological one, meaning that while there is less lower-body training than upper-body training, there's certainly enough of the former to stimulate muscle development and produce beautiful results. That being said, if the routine feels too unbalanced to be enjoyable it might be better to do something else. My whole philosophy of training is: safety first, then fun, then effectiveness. Most people simply don't like to exercise or at least they think they don't. They worry about hurting themselves, or they have a low tolerance for physical discomfort, or they believe exercise is boring. But these obstacles can be overcome with the help of a trainer who's got half a clue, or even a good internet-based program such as Turbulence Training or Precision Nutrition.

By the way, just so you know, I am not an affiliate of Turbulence Training, Precision Nutrition, Dragon Door or any other commercial website. If I give a product or program a good review and you decide to purchase I will make nothing off the sale, so rest assured that I am completely disinterested. I mean, I'm interested but not in a commercial sense :) If that ever changes I will make a full disclosure, of course, but I really don't see that happening, not least because I am the laziest person on the planet when it comes to that sort of thing.