Tips From the Trainer: Torch Fat and Increase Lean Muscle

By Everybody Sport May 6, 2016

Tips from Personal Trainer Ollie Naylor, Wilmslow Leisure Centre

Did you know that you can obliterate fat without actually doing cardio?  In my previous article FAT LOSS MYTHS & MISTAKES, I spoke about the importance of weight training and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) over steady state cardio.

Now we are going to combine both these methods into one.

A study published in the Journal of Translational Medicine (2012), analysed the acute effects on high-intensity interval resistance training (HIRT) vs. traditional resistance training. The HIRT program consisted of rest-pause type training (I will discuss below), while the traditional resistance program consisted of 8 exercises, 4 sets of 8-12 repetitions.

The results showed, the session’s total time for the HIRT group was near half the length of time it took the traditional resistance group, and the post caloric burn was 450% greater!!!!

Below are some of my personal favourite finisher sets and how to incorporate them, why not give them a go!

Torch fat and increase lean muscle with these simple finisher sets:

Rest Pause:

Go to technical failure on your last set. Rest for 15 seconds then using the same weight perform as many reps as you can. Once you have reached failure, then rest for a further 15 seconds and go again. For example, using leg press on the last set you might perform 10 repetition then hit failure, so rest for 15 seconds then go again, you might fail on 5 reps due to muscle fatigue. Rest for another 15 seconds, then on the final set you might only manage 2/3 reps. The exercise is complete and your legs will feel like jelly.

Drop Set:

Once you have gone to failure on your last set, reduce the weight by 20-25% and immediately go again. For best results do x2 drop sets. Note: the only rest you should have is the period it takes you to sort your next weight. Using dumbbell chest press as an example, you might fail on the 8th rep using 20kg’s. Drop the weight, pick up the 16kg’s and perform as many as you can. Once you have stalled, pick up the 12kgs and go again. Feel the burn.

Back Off:

Similar to a drop set, only difference is this is an additional set. Once you have finished your prescribed number of sets, bolt on an additional set and reduce the weight by 30 – 50% and go to failure aiming between 15-30 repetitions.

Coaching Cues

Have you ever got on a machine at the gym, had a look at the instructions or tried to remember how you have been taught and become anxious affecting your overall performance? Yep, we all have at some point! Sometimes, without us realising it can be too much information for us to process and this can affect our technique, meaning we won’t hit our goals .

Try these simple cues or analogies below and see how your technique might change. Trust me it works!

Internal Cueing for Lat Pulldown:

Firm base with feet. Keeping your back flat and chest up, pull the handles down, to your collarbone

External Cueing:

Firm base with your feet. Get your logo (on your shirt) to the handlebars.

More exercises to try:

Exercise(s)Internal FocusExternal Focus
  • “Arch your back, Keep your chest up”
  • “Push your hips back”
  • “Show me the logo on your shirt”
  • “Try to open the door behind you, with your hips”
High Pull
  • “Push your hips back”
  • “Explosively thrust your hips forward as you simultaneously pull the barbell to upper ab/lower chest height with your elbows high”
  • “Pull your trousers up”
  • “Imagine giving someone a wedgey”
  • “ Hips Back”
  • “Bend your knees”
  • “Flat Back”
  • “Touch the box behind you with your bum”

If you are still unsure of how to incorporate them into a training plan, get in touch for some personal training sessions.