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What better way to finish a workout than by doing some moves that will put the exclamation mark at the end of your session? You know, the kind of moves that get the heart rate up and the muscles burning. These kinds of finishing touches are the perfect way to add an extra calorie burn and squeeze in some client favorites at the end of an already great workout.
WHAT WOULD BE CONSIDERED A “FINISHING TOUCH” TO A WORKOUT?
While some may have additional components, a workout generally has three phases: the warm-up (including core and balance), resistance training, and the cool-down. Finishing touches are exercises that are “bonus” exercises that are performed after the resistance portion of the workout is complete and can be more focused on bodyweight training.
These are often exercises that allow the client to “burn it out,” knowing they don’t have any more tough resistance work to complete and a cool down is right around the corner. A finishing touch could be any exercise or movement that adds value to the workout by:
- Burning extra calories by performing some HIIT or cardio moves like mountain climbers.
- Catering to the client’s preferences like adding the kettlebell swings or additional core work that they love that didn’t make it into today’s main circuit.
- Isolating smaller muscle groups for an extra burn after performing bigger compound lifts. Some examples include isolating biceps or triceps.
The key is to add value to the workout and to end on a high note, giving the client a sense of accomplishment, not leaving your client so exhausted that they don’t know how they’ll make it through the rest of the day. You’ll know you did your job when your client says something like, “Wow, that was tough and I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it, but I feel great! Thanks!”
FINISHING TOUCHES TO ADD TO YOUR NEXT WORKOUT
- The move: Start on your hands and toes in a high plank position. Make sure the shoulders stay over the wrists and the core stays tight, keeping the back flat. Pull one knee in toward the chest with the foot lifted off the ground and rapidly switch legs. Keep the feet light and trunk movement minimal. Time this move for 20- or 30-second spurts.
- Why mountain climbers? This move increases the heart rate while challenging core stability.
- The move: Lay on your back with your arms and legs straight up in the air, keeping the core tight and the back and neck neutral. Crunch your shoulder blades off of the mat as you reach your fingertips toward your toes, like you’re trying to touch them. Keep your chin tucked as you crunch to avoid straining the neck. Perform 10-15 reps for 1-3 sets.
- Why toe touches? This move challenges the core. You can progress this move by holding a dumbbell or medicine ball in your hands as you crunch.
Bicep Curls (3 Variations):
- The move: Curl the weight up toward the shoulders, then control the weight as you lower it until just before the elbow locks out. Try 3 different grip positions for this biceps challenge:
1. Palms-up (supinated grip): This resembles the traditional biceps curl.
2. Palms facing in (neutral grip): This is typically referred to as a hammer curl.
3. Palms facing down (pronated grip): Can be done with a barbell or dumbbells.
- Why do biceps curls three different ways? Palms-up curls target the biceps long head and short head, palms facing in target the brachialis, and palms facing down strengthen the brachioradialis (in the forearm). Embrace the burn!