An Example of Workout Order Logistics

The order in which I do my Full Fourteen strength exercises isn’t necessarily dictated by appropriate muscle group. Often I order them based on the equipment available at the time, and I’ll bunch exercises together based on the equipment used. This makes my workout more efficient, and isn’t really any trouble.

I like to get to the gym on weekday mornings, or during a time on the weekend when I know the gym usually isn’t busy. Still, it often does get a bit busy, and so to minimize any disruption either way I order my exercises according to what best makes sense.

I start with the incline bench because this bench is typically among the most frequently used in the gym. Often when I arrive one or more of the incline benches are empty, and that can quickly change. Once I have the chance to use it I want to start the workout there right away and use that bench right away.

I then go to the decline bench press, not because the decline bench is popular (it’s not; in fact, most mistake it for a sit-up bench), but because I’m already holding the correct weight for the exercise: I use the same weight for incline and decline presses. That they’re the same muscle group, while nice, isn’t a critical factor.

I then do Russian Twists, as the decline bench is a good apparatus to do them on, thus I don’t need to change locations. I also use one of the dumbbells from the bench press, exactly half the weight, so I don’t have to switch weights. Doing the exercise with resistance is more important than the exact weight of the resistance (and yes it’s a do-able weight for me). This also has the added benefit of engaging core muscles that will get to work later on.

I then rack the weights, and get a lighter weight for Hammer Curls, which are done sitting on a nearby flat bench (which again is not as popular). If somehow the benches are all taken, I can also do these standing (which with a challenging weight can be a good deal tougher).

I then use the same weight or get a lighter weight for my overhead dumbbell squats, which can be done standing (or in this case, squatting) in an open space. This is the first total-body exercise, and the difficulty is compounded by me already having worked my deltoids in the bench presses (though again, the weight is lighter than those).

I now rack these weights and go to an open/plyo space to do my burpees. Previously, I would start with the burpee as they’re more intense and a total-body exercise. But, because of the unpredictability of bench availability, I now push these back until I know I’ve completed the iffy-availability bench exercises. The burpees require nothing other than padded floor space.

This open space is also good for deadlifts, and weights are typically nearby. So I grab suitably heavy dumbbells and do the deadlifts.

That same weight also works great for Farmer’s Walks, so afterward I carry those around for a set of walks, before racking the weights and moving on.

The Cable Row is done next as the cable deck is a bit more popular and if it’s available I want to jump right on it. However, there is other equipment that can work as an alternative. This is also one of my more challenging exercises, the other total-body exercises helped get those muscles ready to work, and doing the cable row helps prime my subsequent lat pulldowns.

Then I go to lat pulldowns, as there’s more options available for this in the gym and the need for certain equipment isn’t as great.

After this, I do tricep extensions, either on the cable deck if available, or in open space with a dumbbell. If the deck is busy, and the link for extensions is open before I do the pulldowns, I’ll do the tricep extensions there first.

I then do hip abductions and hip adductions, which I like to use the suitable machines for. However, I can also do them standing as bodyweight exercises if they’re taken.

Finally, I do my levator scapulae neck extensions to finish the strength workout. Usually after this, I’ll make sure exercises are all logged correctly in Garmin Connect, then go to the spin bike for an easy 45 minutes.

Obviously, I would not expect anyone to follow this exact order (unless maybe we were working out together!). This order is largely a product of circumstance and seeking to be as efficient as possible in the given situation.

And, of course, it can change each day depending on the situation. Maybe the benches are somehow full at the start of the workout… but not 15 minutes later. Then everything I’d do after would come first, and I’d come back to the bench/dumbbell work later after they clear.

Tagged , ,

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: