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Workin’ the Back

Most week’s when I hit the gym, I do a full body circuit that involves strength training and cardio. Sometimes I concentrate on only strength training and usually pick either upper or lower body. I found a great workout though that concentrates on just a few muscles so I gave it a try. I liked this particular circuit because it works a lot of muscles in the back which hopefully will help me reach my goal of 1 pull-up (it sounds so sad when I say it, “1 pull-up” ha!).

So I tried it out on Friday and my back is still sore, so obviously it’s a good one! It’s basically working those muscles until muscle failure which is a great way to gain strength. In my opinion, it’s also pretty tough. Here’s the circuit:

Back and Biceps

(adapted from One Fit Foodie)

Circuit 1- 4 Rounds

  • Close Grip Pull-Up- 6 reps <– Considering the fact I cannot do a pull-up, let alone 6, I did negative pull-ups. These were supposed to be close grip, but I actually just went back and forth between my palms facing me (more like chin up form) and my palms facing away which is harder.
  • Wide Grip Pull-Up- 10 reps. I did a couple wide grip negative pull-ups, but they were way too hard for me to do ten. So, I went back to switching my hands back and forth.
  • Bent Over Rows- 15 reps. I used 15 pound weights in both hands. The original has you use a 35 pound weight bar.
Circuit 2- 3 Rounds
  • Single Arm Row- 15 pounds, 10 reps. Instead of resting my hand on a bench, I actually used a Swiss Ball which makes it a little harder since there’s a lack of balance.
  • Bent Over Dumbbell Fly- I used 5lb. weights in both hands and did 15 reps. The original has you use 15lb. weights but my form would definitely deteriorate if I used weights that heavy.
Circuit 3- 3 Rounds
  • Incline Hammer Curl- 15lb. weights doing 15 reps. These are tough! It was nice to start working on another muscle after all that back work!
  • Alternating Dumbbell Curl- I used 15lb. weights in both hands and did 15 reps.

That’s it!

Like I said, it was a great workout and very challenging. I like to work 1 or 2 muscles until fatigue because I think it’s a smart way to train, but my problem is I don’t keep to that schedule so I feel like I work out just those muscles really hard and the other’s are neglected.

I guess in this case I don’t mind because I am trying to get my back stronger to do a pull-up. I’m pretty sure I won’t end up with a huge back and puny everything else, humpback style. I’m counting on it at least!

If you strength train, do you concentrate on one muscle or full body?


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