This total-body workout focuses on heavy lean muscle-building strength work. All you need is a pair of dumbbells and a heavy barbell.
Hey friends! How are ya? Hope you’re having an amazing morning so far. Yesterday was spent at Costco stocking up on all the healthy treats, grabbing shaved ice at Bahama Bucks, and late-night swimming at Uncle E’s. I also caught a quick but intense strength workout + my first Peloton workout since they hauled my spin bike into the moving truck destined for storage. It felt SO good to be back… and to shake my legs out after filming Saturday’s videos.
I’ve been following the Lean Machine program pretty closely, modifying for one Orangetheory or barre workout each week. Whenever I stick to a dedicated muscle split, I see results quickly and can notice measurable strength gains. Total body workouts are more rare, but when they occur, I focus on heavy strength with a couple of built-in intervals.
We’re relaunching the Fit Guide workouts this fall with tons of new surprises for you, so if you didn’t catch it on the first round, be sure to hop on the waiting list here. Lean Machine is perfect if you’re looking to build lean muscle and follow a solid split, or you can check out a handy quiz here to find a great *fit* for ya.
For today, I’m sharing a workout named after the Lean Machine plan, focusing on heavy strength, but working your entire body instead of splitting up the muscle groups.
Try to really challenge yourself with the weights on this one – I had minimal equipment when we took these pics because everything was being packed up! – and try to find a weight that makes you really breathe and push yourself to finish each set with proper form. As always, check with a doctor before making any fitness or nutrition changes and honor your body. Modify as needed.
Here’s what the workout looks like:
Form cues and tips:
Low lunge to squat: For this exercise, you aren’t rising in between switching – keep your body LOW and knees bent the entire time. Torso stays upright, step back into your lunge, then keep the front knee bent as you step out to the side to squat. Step the opposite foot behind and lunge. Watch the front knees to make sure they don’t extend past the toes.
Reverse fly: Your feet will be just under your hips with a slight bend at the knees. Hinge forward from your hips, keeping your back flat (shoulders pulled back) and core braced. Open your arms straight out to the sides, squeezing your shoulder blades together, then bring them back down with control.
Barbell row: Your feet will be just under your hips with a slight bend at the knees. Hinge forward from your hips, keeping your back flat (shoulders pulled back) and core braced. Lifting up from your elbows, bring them in towards your torso, engaging into your rear delts. Stop the elbows in line with your torso before carefully lowering back down.
Plie squat jumps: Get into a plie squat position (feet wide and booty LOW), and touch the floor. Keep your abs engaged and chest lifted. Powering through your heels, spring up, reaching your arms towards the ceiling. Land with a soft knee. Repeat
Hammer curls: Hold a pair of dumbbells by your sides, palms facing in. Bend your elbows as you lift them to your shoulders and return to start.
Triceps dips: Place your hands on a bench behind you, or you can perform these on the floor as I have in the pics above. Either bend your knees with your feet flat on the floor or straighten your legs in front of you for more of a challenge. For even more of a challenge, place a flat plate on your legs. Bend your elbows straight back and keep your back close to the bench. Keep your chest lifted and shoulders down. Push back to start.
Decline push-up: Place your shins on a bench and walk your hands out into a plank position. With your core engaged and hips in line, lower into a pushup. Squeeze your chest as you push back to start.
Chest press: Start on your back with legs bent and feet flat on the floor. Hold the weights out to your sides at 90 degrees. Press the weights in front of your chest, performing a chest press.
So, tell me, friends: do you follow a strength training plan, or do you wing it? If you wing it, be sure to check out tomorrow’s podcast episode (I’ll post it here on the blog, too) because it’s all about how to set up a workout plan.
Have a wonderful morning and I’ll see ya soon!
Photos: Lindsay Colson