I am embarrassed to admit this, but I used to think the bench at the gym was for resting. Kind of like the time I thought wasabi was avocado. Or when I thought those small planes at the airport were called puddle thumpers (puddle jumpers). You don’t want to know what goes on in my head, but you DO want to try this body busting bench workout.
You will need a sturdy bench (or chair if you are doing this at home) and three weights for this workout (heavy, medium, and light). This bench workout is a no joke, total body workout. These circuits target triceps, biceps, shoulders, buns, hamstrings, and quadriceps. Your core also gets a killer workout with so many balance moves on the bench. Let’s get started so I can PUMP YOU UP!
Do all five of these circuits outlined below and repeat three times for a targeted all-in-one toning session!
Start with your right knee on the bench, left wrist on the bench directly under your shoulder, right arm extended down while holding the medium hand weight. Extend your left leg directly behind you, squaring your hips to the bench and tucking your seat to eliminate any sway in your lower back (to do this, roll your hips towards your rib cage). Keep your left leg stationary and lift your right elbow up towards the ceiling, executing a full row, then return to the starting position. Do 15 reps on each side.
Sit on the bench and hold the light weight between the insteps of your feet, drawing your knees into your chest. Bend your elbows and use your hands to gently grip the sides of the bench for support, leaning back slightly. Keeping your upper body stationary, extend your legs out in front of you, then draw your knees back towards your chest. Do this 15 times.
Stand on the ground, facing the side of the bench. Bend at your hips and use your right arm to support your body, wrist directly under your shoulder. Square your hips towards the bench and lift your right leg out to the side, creating a 90 degree angle with your knee (foot flexed). Take the medium hand weight and lift your left elbow up towards the ceiling. Then, extend your left arm back, directly behind you and extend your right leg back, squeezing your tush as you extend. Return to the original position. Do 15 reps on each side.
Start sitting on the bench. Bring your knees into your chest, feet off the bench and bring the heavy weight in front of your knees, elbows extended around your legs. Next, bend your elbows and curl the weight in towards your chest, simultaneously straightening your knees out in front of your body. Do this 15 times.
Start standing on the ground, facing the side of the bench. Take the light weight and hold it over on your right hip, with your right foot resting on top of the bench. Quickly bring the weight up overhead as you hop to bring your left foot on top of the bench, ending with the weight on your left side. Repeat this 30 times.
It’s amazing how a few hand weights and a bench can give you a killer workout in a short amount of time. What are some ways you incorporate multiple muscles groups to maximize your workout?