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Here Comes the Hurricane

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My boyfriend and I are feeling the effects of a cold, dark, and wet winter. We are both feeling a little sluggish, and in need of shaking up our fitness routines, so I suggested a workout together. I had a trainer last year, and I am keen to get back to his training style, because it really worked for me. My fitness and strength improved greatly, and I have felt both of those declines in recent months.

My boyfriend agreed to the work out, and I won’t suppose too much, but he may have underestimated how hard I intended it to be—for both of us.

We started off with rowing machines and medicine balls. These look innocuous when they are inert, but I had other ideas.

Row as hard and fast as you can for 2 minutes, then do 20 Burpees, 20 medicine ball swings, then 20 low squats with medicine ball. Repeat for 3 minutes and 30 reps of each, then 4 minutes and 40 reps of each.

Burpee: Start standing, squat down and place hands firmly on the ground outside your legs, push your legs back in one movement until you are in push up position, return legs to the squat position, and stand, pushing arms above your head. Hold a medicine ball throughout for intensity.

We rested for 1 minute in between—which ended up being about 3 minutes by the end—because we needed it to catch our breath.

After that circuit, we moved on to abs. Three hard exercises, one after the other, little rest in between. We left the gym after a shattering 40 minutes, and the session had done its job. I was riding an endorphin high while my muscles simultaneously screamed for mercy.

The next day my boyfriend was reading through Men’s Health, and there it was, a whole article on “Hurricanes,” a training system that combines quick, high intensity exercises in succession. Now we had a name for what we were doing.

As MH says, “Go fast, go hard, go for a minute, and move to the next station—for 5 minutes straight.”

Five minutes—that’s all, right? Well, we discussed it and decided that we should work two of these hurricane training sessions into our week – one on the weekend and one mid week. I had already had my turn, so we hit the gym yesterday morning for his turn. 5 exercises, 1 minute each, 3 sets. TORTURE.

“Tell me you get better at this,” puffed my guy. I just nodded, as this was the only response I could manage. We’d done 20 minutes (with breaks) and wanted to leave. We struggled on through some other exercises (on our own), but in 35 minutes, start to finish, we left the gym.

This type of training is succinct, effective, and works strength and fitness at the same time. It is hard, but it is also great to know that you’ve had an intense workout in half the time. 

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