Sheri’s Workouts: Push-Pull 2

Posted on October 15, 2010 by

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A reminder that these sets are for intermediate to advanced exercisers with weight room experience – it’s assumed you know the basics. Talk to your coach, get a good book on weight training or hire a trainer if any of this doesn’t make sense to you, okay? This is serious stuff, weight training, and you don’t want to get hurt.

Last month’s workout was a Push-Pull with the torso.  This month we’re pushing and pulling with the lower body.  The lower body supplies a more limited range in this sequence – in general the quads (front of the thighs) push and the hamstrings (back of the thighs do the pulling.  Calf muscles do both (powerful buggers!) and the glutes (butt muscles) are worked with both pushing and pulling as well.  EVERY muscle in your body references your core (or torso muscles) – so be cognizant of your form.  Keep your belly button pulled in toward your spine and tucked up under your rib cage.  Be aware of your shoulder blade positioning and to lift your sternum a bit. In other words, you’re working your lower body here but your core needs to be engaged so that all the muscles work together.

WARM UP with 10 to 15 minutes on a cardio machine (go easy – this is NOT cardio!) – or better yet, a brisk walk. This gets your blood moving and your muscles prepped for work. Do not skip it, or you’ll find yourself half way through your workout before your energy really kicks in.

Four sets of every set of exercises. First set is 15-20 reps, second is 15-12 reps, following sets are 12-10 reps. Remember, that means a weight heavy enough that you can’t possibly do MORE than the recommended rep count, okay?

Set One

PUSH:

LEG EXTENSIONS (machine)

Set Two

PULL:

HAMSTRING PULLS (machine, seated)

The above 2 sets can be done super-set style, back to back as the machines are usually next to each other and you’re working opposing muscles.  Sets three and four MUST be done separately for recovery – they are Big Moves.

Set Three

PUSH:  LEG PRESS (machine – go heavy)

Set Four

PULL:  ROMANIAN DEADLIFTS with barbell (also called ‘straight-legged deadlifts’)

Set Five

PUSH/PULL:  STANDING CALF RAISES one leg at a time, heavy dumbbell in hand.  Stand on a rail or block so you can bring that heel all the way down and then extend the heel all the way up – use your full range of motion with your foot flexion.

Spend some time stretching your legs – take your time with the stretches, these are big muscles.