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Minimal Time Training

Build Muscle, Fitness, Strength,

Minimal Time Training

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Do you struggle finding time to workout? Do you have minimal time for training? These workouts are designed to help you gain optimal results with just 1-3 days of workouts per week.

Time is precious – for some, training 6-8 times a week is entirely do-able. Not everyone however, has the circumstances to do this. Does that mean that fewer sessions mean worthless results? No way! Primarily, this article is designed to appeal to persons with 3 days a week or less to train but all the techniques and exercises can be used by anyone for their own programme. Great results can be achieved via increasing speed, strength and muscle mass with these programs. While training with fewer workouts is not necessarily going to turn you into an Olympian gold medallist, the workout efficiency is very high and the results can be excellent.

Below are options for 1, 2 and 3 day per week training sessions. There is only 1 variation listed for the 1 day per week session training. There are 2 variants each for 2 and 3 days per week training. There are other ways to train on limited time of course, but I believe that these workouts are extremely efficient and result producing.

There is one other positive about these workouts – during the warm-up extra work is performed.

So essentially you have 1 main workout and one small extra workout for the one day per week session, 2 main workouts and 2 small workouts for 2 days per week training, and 3 main workouts plus 2 small workouts on the 3 day per week programs.

The small workouts may not seem like much but they will make a big difference to your progress. I highly recommend that they are performed as suggested for optimal results.

The workouts are listed first – after them are listed the entire ensemble of exercises which I recommend.

Rather than state which particular exercise to do, I have provided a selection in each category to freely choose from. There are 4 exercises in group 1-12, and 6 in group 12&13. These are ONLY recommendations so if you can think of an exercise that you feel is more specific to you then by all means use it. The sets and reps are also guidelines but they are effective to use in the manner suggested as they take little time to perform and can produce excellent results.

Without further ado, here they are…

1 day:

Warm-up: 10 minutes

Mobility
Speed strength jumps – 5×2
Explosive strength jumps – 5×2

Main session: 50 minutes max

Squats – 2 sets of 5-6 reps
Anterior/medial delts – 2 sets of 5-6 reps
Abs/hip flexors – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Lats – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Arch back good morning variation 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
(to train hamstrings and static upper back strength together)
Triceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Oblique’s/grip- 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Rear delts/traps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

2 day split A:

Session 1 – Warm-up: 15 mins

Mobility
Speed strength jumps – 5×2
Abs/hip flexors – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Main session: 45 mins max

Max upper body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Max lower body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Anterior/medial delts – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Rear delts/traps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Triceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 2 – Warm-up: 15 mins

Mobility
Explosive strength jumps – 5×2
Lats – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Main session: 45 mins max

Dynamic box squat 75-85 of box squat max 8-10 sets of 2 reps
Dynamic press/bench 50-60% of bench max 8-10 sets of 3 reps
Squats – 2-3 sets 6-12 reps
Oblique’s/grip 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Arch back good morning variation 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps (to train hamstrings and static upper back strength together)

2 day split B:

Session 1 – Warm-up: 15 mins

Mobility
Explosive strength jumps – 5×2
Biceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Main session: 45 mins max

Max lower body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Squats – 2-3 sets 6-12 reps
Oblique’s/grip – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Abs/hip flexors – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Hams/low back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 2 – Warm-up: 15 mins

Mobility
Speed-strength jumps – 5×2
Upper back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Main session: 45 mins max

Max upper body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Anterior/medial delts – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Rear delts/traps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Triceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Lats – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

3 day split A:

Session 1 – Warm-up: 10 mins

Mobility
Light high rep press/bench variation 50 total reps

Main session: 50 mins max

Max lower body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Squats – 2-3 sets 6-12 reps
Hams/low back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 sets
Oblique’s/grip – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Upper back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 2 – Warm-up: 10 mins

Mobility
Light high rep deadlift variation 50 total reps

Main session: 50 mins max

Max upper body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Anterior/medial delts – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Lats – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Triceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Biceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 3 – Warm-up: 10 mins

Mobility
Speed-strength jumps – 5×2
Explosive strength jumps – 5×2

Main session: 15-20 mins max

Rear delts/traps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Abs/hip flexors – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

3 day split B:

Session 1 – Warm-up: 10 mins

Mobility
Speed-strength jumps – 5×2

Main session: 50 mins max

Max lower body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Squats – 2-3 sets 6-12 reps
Hams/low back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 sets
Oblique’s/grip – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Upper back – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 2 – Warm-up: 10 mins

Mobility
Explosive strength jumps – 5×2

Main session: 50 mins max

Max upper body – 4 sets of 1 rep
Anterior/medial delts – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Lats – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Triceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Biceps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Session 3 – Warm-up: 15 mins

Mobility
Light high rep press/bench variation 50 total reps
Light high rep deadlift variation 50 total reps

Main session: 15 mins max

Rear delts/traps – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps
Abs/hip flexors – 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps

Exercises categories

1) Squats

Low wide stance box squat
Low wide stance pin squat
Low wide stance zercher squat
Low wide stance front squat

2) Hamstrings/Low Back

Ultra wide sumo deadlifts
Deadlift from blocks
Snatch grip deadlift
Straight leg deadlift

3) Oblique’s/Grip

Barbell suite-case deadlifts
Barbell suite-case holds
Dumbbell suite-case deadlifts
Dumbbell suite-case holds

4) Abs/Hip Flexors

Straight leg sit-ups
Decline straight leg sit-ups
Bent leg raise
Straight leg raise

5) Triceps

Dumbbell triceps extensions
Barbell floor press
Dumbbell floor press
Skull crushers

6) Lats

Chins
Pull-ups
Barbell rows
Dumbbell rows

7) Anterior/Medial Delts

Barbell press
Barbell seated press
Dumbbell press
Dumbbell seated press

8) Rear Delts/Traps

Rope face pulls (on lat machine)
Bar face pulls (on lat machine)
Straight arm rear deltoid flies
Bent arm rear deltoid flies

9) Biceps

Barbell preacher curls
Dumbbell preacher curls
Dumbbell curls
Hammer curls

10) Upper Back

Seated good mornings
Arch back bent leg good morning
Front squats
Arch back straight leg good morning

11) Speed-strength jumps

Drop jump from 20cm
Drop jump from 30 cm
Drop jump from 20cm (light ankle weights)
Drop jump from 30cm (light ankle weights)

12) Explosive-Strength Jumps

Broad jump
Broad jump (light ankle weights)
Box jump
Box jump (light ankle weights)

13) Max Lower Body

Max wide stance box squat (10 inch box)
Max close stance box squat (10 inch box)
Max ultra wide sumo deadlift
Max deadlift from blocks
Max concentric good morning (close stance)
Max concentric good morning (ultra wide stance)

14) Max Upper Body

Max press
Max seated press
Max board bench press
Max decline bench press
Max floor press
Max incline bench press

Guidelines:

For 1 rep maxes rest 2-3 mins between sets – do 4 total sets at or near maximum

For 5-6 rep maxes rest 2 mins between sets – use the same weight for both sets. Alternatively, take the first set to failure or near failure and then bust out another 5-6 reps rest-pause style using 30-45 second rest periods.

For 6-12 rep maxes for, if using 3 sets rest 30 seconds between sets – for 2 sets rest 60 seconds between sets

If time is very short then do only one set to failure on each exercise – for max effort work stick to 4 sets

For 50 rep exercises choose a weight that takes you to failure at about 25-35 reps – use as many sets as needed and keep a record of the time it takes to reach 50 reps. Next time strive to do 50 reps in less time with the same weight

Mobility work should not be hard static stretching but basic mobility drills – the one exception to the rule of static stretching would be the static hip flexor stretch which can be used as a mobility drill

Speed strength jumps should be performed with minimal ground contact time while jumping for max distance

Explosive strength jumps should be performed with an amortization time that allows maximal force output and distance

Rest 45 second between sets of dynamic & jumping exercises

Jumps should be done for max distance for sets of 2 reps – for example, when performing broad jumps, the first rep will be a max attempt. Return to the starting position and repeat another max rep immediately. Do this for 5 total sets.

All work should be completed in 60 minutes

Change sets reps and switch to different exercises every 2-3 weeks within the same category’s to avoid accommodation. For max effort work, change to a different exercise every week.

References:

“Special Strength Training Manual for Coaches” by Yuri & Natalia Verkhoshansky



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