We often approach fitness like so:
- Interested in endurance? Do cardio.
- Interested in strength and muscle? Do weight training.
But what if you’re interested in both objectives? How can you design a training program that builds muscle, improves your endurance, and makes you more functional?
Circuit training is a fun, challenging, and engaging way to blend different activities into one, allowing you to work toward multiple goals simultaneously.
Without further ado, let’s dive into circuit training, what it is, and how you can get started.
What Is Circuit Training?
Circuit training is a modality where you do several activities back-to-back without rest. For a workout to be classified as a circuit, you should string together at least four or five exercises into one.
Each activity should train a specific region of your body, allowing you to develop yourself evenly and give different muscles some rest before training them again.
Typically, you would choose your exercises and do them one after the other. Once you go down the list, take a couple of minutes to recover and do another round, or call it a day.
The primary idea of circuit training is to condense a lot of work in little time, allowing you to push yourself hard and finish your workouts quickly.
What Benefits Does Circuit Training Offer?
The most notable benefit of circuit training is that you save time. Instead of doing an activity, resting, doing another activity, and resting again, you do a lot of work in little time. As a result, you can push yourself to your limits in ten to twenty minutes and go home to recover.
Circuit training is also highly beneficial because it makes you a more balanced athlete who can push through the pain. Instead of focusing on a single athletic characteristic, you develop multiple attributes that make you more functional. Plus, you have to push yourself hard, which is excellent for building grit.
Another great benefit of circuit training is that it works great for weight loss. First, circuits burn many calories, which can help put you in the calorie deficit you need to lose weight. Depending on the intensity, duration, and exercise selection, folks can burn anywhere from 200 to 600+ calories in a session. Second, circuits are beneficial because they strengthen our muscles, which allows us to maintain them as we lose fat. As a result, we achieve a lean and athletic appearance.
How to Start Circuit Training Today
If you’re interested in starting circuit training today, we have good news for you:
You can do it right now, even if you don’t have any equipment. For example, put together a few movements, such as push-ups, inverted rows, bodyweight squats, hip hinges, and planks. Here is how it might look like:
Push-ups (30 seconds) ⇒ Inverted rows (30 seconds) ⇒ Bodyweight squats (30 seconds) ⇒ Hip hinges (30 seconds) ⇒ Plank hold (30 seconds) ⇒ 2 minutes of rest
Do a round, rest for two minutes, and repeat two to three more times. Strive to maintain your tempo throughout the workout and push through the pain.
As you get fitter, you can make your workouts more challenging by:
- Doing more rounds
- Doing each movement for longer
- Resting less between rounds
- Doing more challenging exercises