Double your fitness with half the workout.
Bold claim I know, but you’re not being paid to exercise. You just want to get results with the least amount of time, so that you can enjoy the things you want to be doing.
With this in mind, you might be pleased to hear that exercise doesn’t have eat up all your free time. In fact, if you’re smart you can build it into your day even if you’re extremely busy. Done right it’ll help you be even more productive, manage stress, regulate your appetite, improve health and performance and lose body fat.
Today we’ll look at a method that is:
- ‘Fun’, even if exercise isn’t your thing
- Time efficient
- Gets effective results
- Requires little or even no special equipment
Given its name, ‘complex’ training is extremely simple form of training that is very effective at stimulating an adaptation response from the body. Complex training will get you fitness and fat loss results in half the time of other less effective workouts.
If you currently spend over 45 to 90 minutes in the gym, bored of your usual workout routines and you have seen a drop in your performance or fat loss results, then I do recommend complex training for an effective and time effective workout. No more sitting around procrastinating and wondering what to do next!
What Is Complex Training?
Complex training is the grouping or series of different exercises back to back, for example a resistance exercise followed by an explosive exercise. Depending on your background, skill and which phase of training you are in terms of periodisation the exact method will vary, but here are some examples of complex training routines.
3 Examples Of Complex Training Workouts
- Squat – Vertical Jump
- Bench Press – Medicine Ball Chest Pass
- Lunge – Step Jumps
Depending on what you want to achieve you can perform this complex in several different ways.
As a general adaptation phase you might like to perform all the resistance exercises back to back, say 12 reps of each with 30-60 seconds recovery.
Taking 1-3 minutes complete rest once this is done you then perform the plyometric portion of your training session, say 10 explosive reps of the explosive exercise as follows:
|Squat||3 x 12 (12RM)||30-60s|
|Bench Press||3 x 12 (12RM)||30-60s|
|Lunge||3 x 12 (12RM)||30-60s|
|3 minute recovery|
|Vertical Jump||3 x 10 (explosive)||90s|
|Chest Pass||3 x 10 (explosive)||90s|
|Step Jump||3 x 10 (explosive)||90s|
If you are into a more advanced stage or competition phase of training then you will want to increase the load of the resistance portion of the exercise (6-8RM), moving into strength repetition range of between 1 and 6 reps.
In addition to this you can combine the resistance and plyometric exercises together with minimal recovery – super sets – for example 6 x squat followed immediately by 10 plyometric vertical jumps.
|1a Squat||3 x 6 (6-8RM)||90-180s|
|1b Vertical Jump||3 x 10||90-180s|
|2a Bench Press||3 x 6 (6-8RM)||90-180s|
|2b Chest Pass||3 x 10||90-180s|
|3a Lunge||3 x 6 (6-8RM)||90-180s|
|3b Step Jump||3 x 10||90-180s|
It should be noted that this is an example and if you are training for a specific sport or competition then you should choose exercises that are specific to that sport.
Note: As you develop through the periodisation cycle into strength and power phases you might also want or need to move into more challenging variations of the exercises set.
While stable exercises such as squat and bench press are best for strength exercises, and in my opinion destabilising these would make them less effective, you could try single leg hops as a development of the vertical jump (only if you are able to do this with full range of motion and you are ready physiologically).
Depth jumps might could also be a development of the vertical jump to really squeeze extra performance and take advantage of the myotatic reflex arc (stretch reflex) to generate more power.
Why Is Complex Training So Effective?
In terms of losing body fat, the complex training method is effective because it stimulates so many muscle fibres, can be highly anaerobic and generate high amounts of lactate, and if you play with your recovery times to reduce the ability of the body to disperse lactate you will increase epoc further.
In addition to this the workouts will burn lots of energy during the session making a calorie deficit more achievable for those looking to shed body fat.
By performing multi-joint compound exercises in a complex workout, and by keeping your workout time short (max 30-40mins) you will create an anabolic response in the body, human growth hormone (HGH) and a whole host of other benefits, especially if you follow a healthy nutrition plan.
In terms of CNS and muscle fibre activation, by performing a resistance exercise before a powerful explosive exercise you will stimulate the central nervous system (CNS) and increase your body’s ability to generate power.
Nutrition, exercise and leading a healthy lifestyle needn’t be a chore. In fact, it should become an automatic ‘thing’ you do. You shouldn’t have to think about it.
Most nutrition and exercise plans fail because they are just too much effort in the long term. They are too uncomfortable to do forever. Or they require too much change too soon.
If you’re looking to lose weight, you’re fed up of diets, and you just want to be healthy and confident, with losts of energy and robust health, but you don’t want to stick to a diet, supplements or crazy exercise regimes, then you might be right for online weight loss coaching. This isn’t a diet. It’s 12 months of sustainable coaching that’ll empower you to quit diets. If you want sustainable nutrition coaching, you can learn more and watch the videos here. And yes – it does include 12 months of workouts too.
I hope this helps you save time and get better results through more effective training. I would highly recommend introducing complex training into your exercise plan especially if you are looking to overcome a plateau and you are ready for more explosive workout.