Sheri’s Workouts: Power of Six 4: TORSO

Posted on June 20, 2011 by

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When weight lifting, the first 2-3 sets are really just about blood distribution.  When you’re a beginner (in your first couple years of lifting) then this is good – you’ll build muscle at this level, you’ll regenerate tissue, and you’ll recover fast enough to keep you enjoying what you’re doing.  Increased blood circulation is really at the ‘heart’ of all things healthy when it comes to the body.  In this stage, it’s good to do a lot of different types of exercises because you are, really, waking things up and teaching your body to move as a cohesive unit.  This works great for fat loss as well – you’re giving your body a strong message that you need every single little muscle you’ve dredged up from the depths of wherever you have been with yourself.  You strengthen your core and restore some balance and generally wake things up.

Now, when you’re more experienced and you understand what a premium health item that muscle IS, as well as the value of muscle when it comes to lookin’ GOOD – then you want to move on from there.  There are many ways to do that.  This is one of my favorites, and as far as I know, I made it up.  I could be wrong.  It appeared in my head, and when Samantha incredulously asked me what the hell we were doing one morning, I said ‘The Power of Six’, and we sat down and had a chat about what all that’s about.

The Science:  because the first couple-few sets are just about getting blood to the muscle, it’s the sets that come AFTER that that will really challenge your body and promote growth.  How I do this is to pick four excercies – 2 primary sets for the body part I’m working, and I super-set with 2 easier sets for another body part (the ‘rest’ stage of the workout).  This torso workout is particularly challenging because you’re hitting similar and connected core muscles.  This is great to follow a grueling legs day:

POWER OF SIX:  TORSO

Set 1: (do six times with short 60 sec rests between supersets if needed)

LAT PULLDOWNS (15 reps – no cheating!)

DUMBBELL CHEST PRESS  (15 reps; go heavy, have a spotter, don’t let your elbows drop down past the bench.  Keep the work in the chest, not the shoulders.)

Set 2: (do six times with short 60 sec rests between supersets and yes, you’ll need it now)

CABLE ROWS (15 reps, really watch your form and concentrate on pulling with your lower back muscles.)

FLAT BENCH FLYES (15 reps – you’ll be tired – go with a medium weight for you)

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STRETCH really well after this workout, remembering to hold a stretch over 20-30 seconds to really stretch the muscle.  A quick bouncy unthoughtful stretch is not going to get in there and do the job.