Dumbbell Thrusters
Dumbbell Thrusters (Illustration by Chris Philpot)

Crunch Time

The fastest and most efficient way for multisport athletes to max their strength.

Dumbbell Thrusters

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It’s easy to waste your energy lifting weights (and if you’ve ever said, “Today, I’m working my chest,” you probably are). According to Rob Shaul, owner of the Mountain Athlete gym in Jackson, Wyoming, the fastest and most efficient way for multisport athletes to max their strength is not to mimic the highly targeted routines of bodybuilders but to work the entire body in each session. Between moves, catch your breath while doing hip and shoulder stretches. “Hip and shoulder mobility are key to durability,” he explains, “and if you’re lifting right, you’ll need the break.”

How to Fit Training Into Your Busy Life

1. Work shorter, harder, smarter
2. Follow these three secrets
3. Adopt one of these Plans of Attack
4. Workout on the go
Plus: Know your Tools: One nesting 50-pound dumbbell set, like Bowflex’s SelectTech 552 ($400; bowflexselecttech.com). For each move, use enough weight so that six sets of five reps is all you can handle.
Total time: 40 minutes, twice a week (on days you don’t have aerobic workouts scheduled).

Five to seven minutes
Do ten squat jumps (see “Working Remotely“), ten push-ups, and ten sit-ups without resting between sets. Repeat with nine reps, then eight, and so on until you hit zero.

1. Dumbbell Thrusters

[sidebar img="1492031" hed="Dumbbell Thruster, Instep Stretch"] Dumbbell Thrusters and Instep Stretch

Time: Nine minutes
Stand with feet at shoulder width, arms bent, dumbbells resting on shoulders. Squat until your butt is below your knees (keep your knees behind your toes and your back straight). Thrust to a stand, pressing the dumbbells to the ceiling, then lower them to your shoulders. Increase weight after each set so the final set is difficult but manageable.
Do: six sets of five reps.

Between sets: INSTEP STRETCH—Step your right leg forward, one to two feet wider than your shoulders. Lean into a lunge, your left hand on the ground for balance. Work your right elbow to the ground beside your right foot. Hold for ten to fifteen seconds.

2. Walking Dumbbell Lunges

Walking Dumbbell Lunges, Floor Angel Stretch

Walking Dumbbell Lunges, Floor Angel Stretch Walking Dumbbell Lunges & Floor Angel Stretch

Time: Nine minutes
Start with dumbbells resting at your hips. Lunge forward with your right foot, touching your left knee to the ground. Step immediately into the next lunge, left foot forward and right knee down, so you’re walking. Keep your torso upright and your stomach tight.
Do: six sets of five reps per leg (ten steps total per set). Increase weight after each set so the final one is difficult but doable.

Between sets: FLOOR ANGEL—Lie on your side with your bottom leg straight and your top thigh perpendicular to your body, knee at 90 degrees. Extend your arms, fingertips touching. Sweep the top hand upward like a windshield wiper, following it with your eyes, until the bent knee lifts off the ground. Hold five to ten seconds. Return to starting position, and repeat on other side.

3. Scotty Bobs

Scotty Bobs, Pigeon Stretch

Scotty Bobs, Pigeon Stretch Scotty Bobs & Pigeon Stretch

Time: Nine minutes
Start in a push-up position, with hands on the dumbbells. Do one push-up, then shift your right leg wide for support and pull the dumbbell to your right shoulder. Return weight to floor. One rep is two push-ups with one row on each arm.
Do: six sets of five reps.

Between sets: PIGEON STRETCH—Step your left leg forward into a deep lunge. Rotate your left knee outward until your body is resting on the outside of your calf. Keeping your chest erect, push your hips toward the ground to stretch the glute. Hold for ten secs per side.

From Outside Magazine, April/May 2021 Lead Photo: Illustration by Chris Philpot

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