When goals change the way we train often needs to change. For example, when the primary focus is building muscle mass you might be forgiven for abusing the 8-12 rep range rule, hitting each body part once a week like a bodybuilder – after all, it works. For people like this problems arise when they need to turn up the pace to shift some fat. Sometimes a workout dedicated to grafting the gun show isn’t the optimal way to get rid of the blubber, yet psychologically it can be tough to ‘’neglect’’ your arms.
The same can be said for following a training split which might go against the grain of what you have learnt to be ‘’right.’’ For example, you might well be from the school of thought that the only way to train is hitting each body part once a week. To then be prescribed a programme which has you hopping from one exercise to the next in circuit fashion with little care for direct isolation of smaller muscle groups might be unnerving for you. However, the question you have to ask is this. Are all of the muscles being stimulated?
If you are hitting rows, pull ups, chin ups, pressing overhead, on a bench then that will hit your arms and deltoids from the front and back. Don’t think because you are not having the conventional curling session once a week you will need to buy smaller t-shirts!! In regards to ‘’over training’’ this is a massively debated topic. Many experts will tell you it is nearly impossible to over train if you are eating enough and using the right supplements.
In relation to circuits you need to be mindful that whilst you might well be stimulating the same muscle groups 3 times week opposed to 1, the emphasis and intensity is very different to out and out ‘’hypertrophy’’ training. Yes, the tempo and brutality is very tough however the intensity against each muscle group is not the same as a workout where you are going beyond failure with every set. With that said, don’t stress you will struggle to over train using circuits provided the emphasis is on time under tension, not failure and you work different areas of your physique throughout the week.
Can you throw in some hypertrophy based work as well? Absolutely. Once a week, using a workout specifically for isolation of areas you want to improve upon is a great way to enhance your physique as well as further support fat loss.
So iron warriors, do not be shy to hit a few circuits!