If you have worked you ass off for the last couple months and or years the last thing you want is your results to disappear, right? Now, let me just say that the popular believe of losing all ”gains” in a couple week is ridiculous. Of course, if you’re eating ice cream and pizza for 2 weeks straight, yes, you’re absolutely going to lose the body you have worked so hard for. But, assuming that you’re not one of those people, keeping your nutrition the way, it needs to be will carry you a long way. However, nutrition can only carry you so far for so long. At the end of the day, we do need intense physical activity to keep up your strength and overall physical fitness.
Just doing the bare-minimum or just working out to get a sweat are not going to help you get stronger or maintain it. what is? Here are some tips for you
If you don’t have any equipment to work with (even if you do) tempo work is going to be hugely beneficial to help maintain your strength. Tempo work basically means performing movements, reps and sets at a pre-determined tempo. We do this to put your body under more tension for longer periods of time ( time under tension). Just like everything else, your body will adjust to this tempo work, which will make reps and sets at a ”normal pace” feel much lighter. Doing this with bodyweight push-ups and squats for example will get you a great workout that will leave you sore and wanting more. If you have access to some equipment, this is a great way of mixing things up to give your muscles a different stimulant.
Bodyweight workout example:
- 10 tempo push-ups (tempo: 3 second down, dead stop at the bottom, 3 second to the top)
- straight into 10 plank shoulder taps, both sides (20 reps total)
- rest 60-90 seconds, repeat 3-4 times
- 8 tempo Dumbbell floor press, (tempo: 3 second down, dead stop at the bottom, 3 second to the top)
- straight into 8 tempo dumbbell rows (tempo: normal tempo up, 3 second pause at the top, 3 seconds down)
- rest 90 seconds, repeat total of 4 times
German volume training is a good way to maintain muscle strength and size during lockdown because of the amount of volume (you might have guessed that already). Volume replaces super heavy weights, which is obviously ideal if you don’t have any. You can do this style of training with any exercise or movement, weighted or unweighted.
German volume training works like this: you complete 10 sets of 10 reps at the same weight with 60-90 seconds of rest between sets. That is not a lot of rest which forces a lot of blood into the muscle cells, this supports muscle health and growth.
Like I said, you can do this with or without weights, at home this could be done with push-ups, squats, lunges etc.. To make it harder you could combine it with the tempo work that I talked about earlier in this blog. You could also make it a superset*, where you perform 2 movements back-to-back without resting and take 60-90 seconds after both movements are done. This allows you to get a solid strength session in within 15-20 minutes. For the superset variation make sure you work different muscle groups within the superset, doing pull ups and bent over rows for example won’t allow you to keep the sets up because the muscles will be overworked.
*I personally really like the German volume superset style. I use it quite often during my own training sessions if I am short on time or just looking to get a good muscle pump in.
Example 1: (regular German volume style)
10 x 10 push-ups, 60 seconds rest between sets (can be done on your knees)
Example 2: (German volume + tempo work)
10 x 10 tempo push-ups, tempo is 3 seconds down, 1 second hold at the bottom, 2 seconds up. Rest 60-90 seconds between sets.
Example 3: (German volume superset style)
10 x 10 tempo push-ups + 10 bent over rows, rest 60-90 seconds between sets.
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