As a firm believer of never letting your body get ‘comfortable’ with your fitness routine, I was eager to try a Fitness Slot over at No1 Fitness. According to the expert Harry Thomas, co-founder of No1 Fitness, Fitness slots were designed to give maximum results in just 30 minutes and conveniently timed so that they can be ‘slotted’ into your schedule, so even on your busiest day you can still make time to work-out.
Last week I headed over to their London Bridge venue to try out a TRX Fitness slot; a suspension based, body-weight exercise class that develops strength, balance, flexibility and core stability. Perfect for an all-over body workout. After just 5 minutes of training, Harry had us sweating and pushing ourselves to the max. The class featured a range of compound movements and HIIT exercises, designed to challenge each area of the body in a time-efficient and effective way. With a maximum of 8 in each class, or just 2 in my case, you can really get that 1 on 1 tuition to help improve your form or to just give you that little confidence boost.
I was a little sceptical at first as I normally spend 1 hour to 1 hour 30 mins in the gym and so I wasn’t sure whether I’d really get a beneficial workout in just 30 minutes. Trust me, I was wrong and I left the class feeling extremely positive and energised.
As TRX ropes aren’t always available in gyms/or free to use, I asked Harry Thomas what his alternate top 5 exercises that he recommends packing into your workout to really see results.
Harry Thomas’s Top 5 Exercises to Pack into YOUR workout
These essential exercises are great to pack into your workout as they all have amazing benefits no matter what your goal is. Using a number of different muscle groups, they are all burn calories and will challenge you to the max!
“We like to incorporate exercises that work a number of muscles at once but also work the body through 3Dimensions”, says Harry.
“If you think about more the exercises that we do in the gym – running, pressing, lunging squatting, rowing – our body only moves forward and backward. In everyday life we also move side-to-side and rotate. Therefore our training routines should ensure that our body is working through all of these dimensions – which is also great for the joints and increases flexibility.”
1. Lateral lunges with a dumbbell hold
Hold a dumbbell or kettle-bell in front of your chest. Step out to the side and aim to get your bum as close to the floor, keeping your opposite leg straight and chest high. This is great because it challenges the hips and really attacks the glutes. If you do 10 on each side with good depth, you will see if will become super tiring and taxing on the legs.
2. Courtesy lunge into one arm press
Another great full body exercises especially for the glutes. Using one dumbbell or kettlebell, perform a courtesy lunge whilst reaching across with the same side arm. When you come back up from the lunge, step back to the side and press the weight above your head.
3. Transverse squat + weights on shoulders
Standing in a neutral position keeping the weights on both shoulders, take a step outwards with one leg as if you are stepping over a gate whilst the other foot stays still. I try to get people imagining they are stepping on to quarter or twenty-past on a clock (if you are facing twelve). As your foot hits the floor go into a deep squat and as you rise up you step back to the starting position. Repeat on both sides. This is a great movement to improve a number of things including different muscle fibres in the inner thigh and glutes. It is also amazing for the pelvic floor and will also help improve hip flexibility. For those who love heavy squats, this exercise can also be a good to help increase your depth.
4. Overhead Swing with reverse step
Ab exercises over the years have mainly come from crunches. The problem with most crunches is that you will find that the abs are not switched on to full capacity and you actually end up working your hips much more. This is not good due to the amount of time most of us are sitting at a desk for the period of the day. If we can encourage more extension through the abdominals, your abs will get much more of a workout. Whilst swinging a light pair of dumbbells above the head, you are aiming to take a step back simultaneously. Aiming for 10 on each leg stepping back.
5. Clockwork press ups
The aim is to perform as many press-ups whilst changing the hand positions. Starting from your hands facing in and for each rep slowly move your hands more and more out so the finishing position is that your hands are the opposite way around. This challenges the chest in a number of ways but is also great for wrist, elbow and shoulder function. For those who get shoulder pain during a press up, we suggest to play around with your hand positions to find a place where it doesn’t hurt and then perform the press ups like this.
For more information or to book a session with Harry, visit no1fitness.co.uk
Fitness slots at No1 Fitness start from £25 per class. Packages available.