I recently put up a retooled version of my beginner/rusty lifter workout. I wrote that workout in response to the less than ideal layout of my new gym. What I wanted to do was my original resuming weights after time off (or having never lifted) workout, but I couldn’t get my heart rate up since it was too difficult to go from exercise to exercise as it was originally written. I have now done the reorganized version of that workout twice.

The idea of the workout is to get your heart rate up and to get a good cardio workout from the lifting. You are basically training your muscles to lift while giving them enough rest individually that you are not overly straining yourself before you are ready. With the reorganized version, I have no problem getting my heart rate up. Even 6 or 7 minutes after I finish my third set, my heart rate is still north of 115 beats per minute. However, you are not igiving your muscles quite so much recovery time, either, since you are grouping the muscle groups together instead of spreading them out.

Perhaps it was having a migraine the night before, or perhaps it was not eating enough before the workout. I was wiped out after I finished. It took me between 12 and 14 minutes to complete each set, so it is about a 45 minute workout all told.

At least I feel fine by the time I’ve finished eating my protein bar and gotten myself a second breakfast. Both days I did the workout wound up involving me lifting computers and monitors around the building afterwards; I felt fine then so recovery wasn’t a problem.

If you are a beginner, then I recommend that you do the workout as it was originally written as most gyms are fairly standard in their layout and can accomodate that. For the half dozen or so people that I know are trying to use the workout at my new gym, I recommend that you go a bit slower than I do or even mix things up again. It may mean missing out on half of the purpose of the workout, but you won’t burn yourself out and turn yourself off of lifting right away. The three people that have talked to me about the workout don’t like their knees and so skip the jumping jacks; feel free to follow suit.

If somebody that is an experienced lifter gets stuck for a workout sometime, try out the reorganized workout and let me know what you think. Am I right to think that the new version isn’t really suited for beginners? Or am I just so exhausted from everything else that is going on in my life that I would be feeling awful afterwards no matter what I did at the gym?