Short, Intense Summer Training

Summer's finally here and your motivation for working out in the gym all day is sapped with the thought of sunny beaches and poolside parties. Not only that, but it's just plain harder to get all the work done when it's so hot you can hardly breathe! There's got to be a better way to get pumped up to size.

High-intensity training might be your solution. The techniques promote muscle growth while burning plenty of calories. They're also sure to get you in and out of the gym so you can enjoy the rest of the day in cooler quarters. But before you try this routine, read ON's terms of use.

Crank up the intensity and get a wicked upper body pump going, supersetting your chest and back muscles. You'll follow the superset protocol by engaging in different chest and back exercises back to back with no rest between sets.

Although there's no rest period from one exercise to the next, there's no reason to slow down since you'll be training opposing muscle groups. The pushing motions work your chest, front deltoids and triceps while pulling moves your back, biceps, and rear deltoids. Typically, you'll be just as strong in the second set as you were in the first, even without the benefit of a rest period.

To fly through your delt routine, throw in some drop sets. Nothing brings the pain and pump faster to a muscle group than the dreaded drop sets, and this training technique is particularly well suited to your deltoids.

Before you get going, pick out dumbbells according to weight and line them up heaviest to lightest ready to grab. Start out with your heaviest weight, doing as many reps as possible. When you're totally taxed, put down that dumbbell and 'drop down' to a lighter weight. Continue doing as many reps with that dumbbell and proceed until you've gone through 3 or 4 dumbbells of progressively lighter resistance. Here are a couple of practical applications for drop sets…

Hate training abs and calves? You aren't alone. Not by a long shot. When the sun's out and everyone's headed to the beach, it takes nothing short of iron willpower to drag yourself to the gym for some quality time with abs and calves. Here's how to train these neglected muscles and leave yourself with plenty of quality time outside the gym.

The training principle known as Staggered Sets involves dedicating a set for a particular muscle group in between sets for totally unrelated muscles. This often works best when the other muscles are among your favorites to train. So if you want to apply the Staggered Sets principle to calves development, you'd slip an exercise for the calves between sets of chest work. Here's how it breaks down…

By adding a set of Standing Calf Raises at the end of each chest exercise, you'll end up doing a total of 10 sets for your calves, all without having to spend a lot of extra time focusing on them at the end of your workout. This strategy won't take anything away from your chest workout and the bottom line is more time for strutting your well-defined profile in front of your adoring public.
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