A slight change in direction with the weekly tips today, away from diet and nutrition and onto exercise selection in the gym. I have talked about this before, but like most things, it never harms to revisit a certain area. I want to look at the difference between a compound exercise and an isolation exercise.
A compound exercise uses three or more muscle groups at a time. Squats, deadlifts, bench press, chin ups and dips to name a few of the most common.
An isolation exercise use only one muscle group and focuses purely on that one muscle, for example a bicep curl or tricep extension.
The benefits of doing compound movements over isolation are as follows:
1. More muscle groups used in the set which means more energy required to perform the set
2. The more energy required, the more fat the body will burn as a result of a higher metabolism
3. Compound movements require fast contractions from the muscles. The faster the contraction, the more fibres recruited to lift the weight resulting in faster muscle growth and conditioning or toning if you are female
4. Compound movements keep your metabolic rate up for the next 48 hrs AFTER your workout, which means even at rest, your body will continue to burn fat and allow you to eat more food. If good food (protein) is consumed, your metabolism will be raised further still.
5. Compound exercises will actually raise your heart rate to a level that you are doing “cardio” without ever getting on a bike or treadmill (Result)
6. Studies now show that compound movements will temporarily raise your blood pressure but importantly, LOWER it over a period of time so excellent for your long-term health
Compound movements basically mean RESULTS. Isolation exercises don’t produce results, unless you are a top-level athlete looking for the final few percentile edge over another athlete.
If your goal in the gym is to get stronger, faster, leaner, lose body fat, gain muscle, tone up, get a six-pack, lose weight, body conditioning, improve performance in ANY sport and to stay generally fit, healthy and to live to a ripe old age of 80 years plus, then chose compound exercises in the gym. It’s how professional athletes train. It’s how I train. It’s how I was taught to train others, and how I train every single one of my clients in the gym and at our Boot camp. Oh, and BTW, we are now maxing out our Bootcamps, so book in fast on Monday morning. Well done to all in attendance.
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