Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Why I love circuit training and why you should love it too !!!

Why I love circuit training and why you should love it too !!!

Metabolic Circuit Training (MCT) also know as Metabolic Resistance Training (MRT) is an optimal way to train in order to round out your strength training program. It is a common term thrown around but many don't fully understand what it really means or ever WHY they do it. I can personally tell you that adding in MRT ito your training program, you will see faster results as well as create a more balanced physique.

I personally LOVE circuits. Its the cornerstone of my physique and it helps me balance out my muscles and create overall fullness in weaker areas of my body. BUT what exactly is MRT and what does it do to your body?? Let me explain. Metabolic resistance training is a form of metabolic conditioning. It uses the 3 exercise pathways in our bodies to condition the muscles and turn your body into a fat burning machine. Metabolic conditioning is excellent for fat loss and overall conditioning of the body. It's a full total body functioning workout that leaves your body in a fat burning state 24-48 hours post workout.

A few examples of how you can set up a circuit are as follows:

-Tabata: 20 seconds of hard work, followed by 10 seconds of rest for 8 total rounds. This is only 4 minutes of work, but be warned....its a hard 4 minutes

-30 On/30 Off: 30 seconds of hard work, followed by 30 seconds of rest for 6 total rounds

-Circuits: Perform 3-6 exercises in a row with minimal to no rest between sets. These exercises should follow a logical pattern and should include elements of pushing, pulling, squatting, hinging, and carrying objects.

One common thought is that circuit training, MRT and strength training are interchangeable terms. They are not however. The primary goal of MRT is to increase the efficiency of one of three metabolic pathways used in energy metabolism. The three pathways are :
Creatine Phosphate Pathway: Also referred to as the Immediate Pathway, this energy system is responsible for providing short (less than 10 seconds) bursts of energy.

Glycolytic Pathway: Also referred to as the Intermediate Pathway, this energy system provides the energy required for short, intense activities lasting the one to four minutes.

Aerobic Pathway: Also referred to as the Long-Duration Pathway, this metabolic pathway provides the energy required for longer-duration exercises of moderate-intensity work.

The rest period determines the intensity of the workout an which pathway is used. Strength training and MRT are not interchangeable. The goals of MRT is to condition the body using various exercises and equipment that tax the body in short bouts while allowing enough recovery time to catch your breath and continue. Using heavy weights to tax the muscles is not the goal but using moderate weights for maximal capacity is the preferred method. MRT circuits are set up systematiclly with a goal in mind. They are not just random exercises thrown together but set up in a complex fashion to reap the benefits of a full body program. IF you are looking for strength gains, using a traditional bodybuilding programming would be ideal for you.

How do you know if this type of training is for you? Ask yourself the goals you are trying to achieve. Then make sure that your goals align with your training and nutrition. The results you desire are based upon training and nutrition. Here are a few basic guidelines to follow:

1.)You need to ensure that you are eating enough calories to support your intense training, The more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism, so don’t sacrifice your lean mass for a smaller number on the scale!

2.) You should plan your strength workouts for 3-4 days out of the week and supplement MRT training 2-3 times a week. MRT is meant to enhance your strength program and not replace it.

3.) Find activities that you enjoy doing and keep your body moving around. You don't want to compromise your lifting efforts by burning muscle away doing cardiovascular training long duration.

Be sure to add in some MRT training to enhance your strength training program. I promise that you will see amazing results and you will find a new way of training that challenges you!!!

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