Learn how to perform a slow-paced workout routine.

Go Slow and You Will Grow!

So far, we have learned quite a bit about high-intensity training (HIT). Now, let’s take it to the next level with some more information. Today, you are going to learn that slowing down your lifting tempo on occasion can be immensely beneficial for muscle growth. Why? Well, your body is great at adapting, not only to the types of exercises you choose to do, but also to the types of resistance and lifting tempo that you use during your exercises. Specifically, the Journal of Strength and Conditioning states that:

you may get similar responses from different lifting tempos when training, but that you should include both a 2 second up and 2 second down lifting tempo and a 2 second up and 4 second down lifting tempo into your training for maximum benefit.

A slow down movement is termed the eccentric phase, and multiple studies have noted its importance. Unfortunately, the lifting tempo is often overlooked when weight training. To me, it is a shame to see dedicated people work hard in the gym without getting the results they deserve. Incorporating a slow eccentric movement into your workouts will undoubtedly help to improve your muscle size and overall strength. Another amazing benefit to moving slowly is that you must make sure that you keep your core muscles, which include your abs and back, tight throughout the exercise in order to keep your balance. Because you are working these muscles while trying to move weight slowly, you are also improving core strength and endurance, which results in stronger abs and back and likely a good way to prevent and reduce back pain.

Targeting Certain Body Regions

At times, you may want to target certain body regions to help improve the strength of endurance of weaker muscle groups in your body. For many, shoulder girdle weakness is common, which typically results in shoulder pain or injury. Therefore, strengthening your shoulder muscles will not only help you better perform day to day activities, but will also help to prevent future shoulder injury. So, you on board to target this group today? Let’s change the literal and figurative pace of this challenge and try a slow-paced, meditative workout routine.

Slow-Paced Shoulder Workout Routine

For today’s workout routine, you want to perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps for each exercise. Use the 4 seconds up, 4 seconds down count. Be sure to choose a weight that will only allow you to perform 10-12 repetitions in each set. For example, if you can perform 15 or 20, choose a heavier weight or try to go a bit slower. On the other hand, if you can only do 5, then use a lighter weight.

Let’s start with a multiple joint exercise as usual.

1. Upright Row Squat

I think the hardest part of this exercise is remembering to breathe! While you are trying to coordinate squatting down and rowing upwards, it is easy to forget to feed your body with oxygen. Just don’t forget this, and you will do great with exercise. I know that it is a change in pace, but go slow! 4 seconds up and 4 seconds down. At least do 10 for each set. This exercise works your shoulders, triceps, biceps, quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings.

2. Vertical Shoulder Raise

 Oh yea… Feel this classic shoulder exercise in muscles from the back of your head to your core! If your neck feels a bit tight, this is probably natural if these muscles are weak. I’m sure this exercise has been performed for millenia, and it continue to show it’s lovely face in modern day workouts because it remains to be so effective. Again, remember to breathe and keep your core muscles tight. This exercise works your shoulders, trapezius, biceps.

3. Lunges

Ok, yes… I promised a shoulder workout, and most of this is… But, it will be another 48 hours before your legs get some resistance training resistance. So, let’s sneak in a quick lower leg workout today. Because of trainer privilege, I’m going to throw in one of my favorite lower leg exercises. Plus, this exercise will get us ready for tomorrow 😉 This exercise works your lower extremity, focus on quadriceps.

4. Front- Shoulder Raise

‘Rounding third base with one of the last exercises planned to target your shoulders. Your shoulder muscles are divided into three different divisions: anterior (front), side (lateral), back (posterior). Since we worked the sides earlier, let’s give some attention to the anterior portion of your major shoulder muscles — the deltoids. This exercise works your shoulders, pectoral muscles, trapezius, core muscles.

5. Reverse Flys

Let’s finish up today’s workout routine with the Reverse Flys exercise. Since we are focusing our energy and attention on the shoulders, be must not neglect the back part of the shoulders and the upper back, which work together to help improve your posture. In addition, strong upper back shoulders may help prevent or treat shoulder pain that you may be experiencing. An important key for this exercise is to make sure that you keep your abs and back tight with your knees at a slight bend. You should feel the burn in your entire upper back if you are doing this exercise correctly This exercise works your shoulders, trapezius, rhomboids, quadriceps, glutes, lower back.

Afterthoughts

Today, I hope you have learned how to design a workout routine that targets a particular area of your body that may be weak. In general, most of the exercises that you perform should be targeted towards that particular muscle group, but you should also throw in a multi-joint upper and lower body exercise to make sure you don’t neglect your other muscles. Good work today. I hope you enjoyed the slow, meditative pace of today’s workout routine.