Circuit routines, at the most basic level, consist of a series of exercises that need to be performed quickly one after the other, with short rest times, if any at all. The circuit closes when all its stations, typically 5 to 10, have been touched once, and can then begin again. This rather abstract essence of circuits translates to a wide spectrum of real-life possibilities, with workouts including only resistance or cardio exercises, combinations of both, while others target specific athletic skills, including power, agility and endurance in the mix.
Circuit routines, at the most basic level, consist of a series of exercises that need to be performed quickly one after the other, with short rest times, if any at all.
The perks of circuit routines
- Blazing fast. In a hectic-paced world where the authentic luxury is the ownership of our time, having the possibility to contain the duration of our workout is surely a big plus for a lot of busy people who couldn’t spend hours at the gym. A circuit program can in fact easily fit the timeframe of a lunch break.
- Defeats the ordinary. If you’re not new to the gym, you may have faced boredom and loss of motivation at some point. Circuit training makes it easy to drop the routine as you quickly move from one exercise to the other, challenging your body in more ways than you thought were possible and bringing the fun back into physical activity.
- Burns calories after exercise. Reducing wait times between exercises rapidly depletes your body’s energy system, so the body will need to spend extra calories later on to recreate balance (this is often referred to as the after-burn effect, or EPOC: Excess Post-workout Oxygen Consumption). Depending on your training level and physical condition, the effect could last up to 48 hours, continuing to burn extra calories even while you rest.
- Muscle strength. These non-stop workouts are very effective for beginners who want to build a muscular base quickly, they can help athletes achieve a better muscle tone and endurance, and also fight muscle tissue decrease in the aging. Weightlifters can also perform targeted circuit programmes for body conditioning.
- Cardiovascular endurance. Increase in aerobic consumption, stamina and the ability to withstand physical effort for longer times are proven effects of a consistent commitment to this type of programmes.
- Body composition. Circuits are proven ways to decrease fat mass to the advantage of lean mass, therefore delivering results that will make you feel better and last longer in time.
Is circuit training good for you?
If you have followed us thoroughly up until now, you already know the answer: yes, all of them will enjoy the benefits of circuit training. Tatiana starts torching calories right away, and with the correct dietary approach she’ll be enjoying a leaner body that’s also more efficient in burning fat, even while resting. Paul feels so empowered he’s to become addicted to physical exercise in no time, Joanna gets more and more confident in her body, Rose is happy to preserve her mobility and flexibility, while Stephen is stronger than ever on the tennis court. Last but not least, a bonus for all of them: lots of precious spare time to dedicate to themselves, as compared as to other forms of training, which they surely will appreciate.
Issue number one: exercise form. As a novice you may be puzzled about the correct execution and pace of the exercises, while having no time in between to rest or think may lead to confusion. To avoid mistakes and ensure safety, you’ll probably have to stick to a trainer full-time during circuit workouts. Not many fitness clubs can afford letting you monopolize their staff, can they? Let alone opting for the safer machines, which may sound a sensible move at first, but then think about how quickly the seconds go when you need to set them up manually from station to station.
Did we tickle your curiosity? Then give circuit training a try: look for new classes or ask your trainer, and embrace a fitter, stronger and healthier you.