Why Wednesday – Why You Should Try Supersets

Tuesday night after work I braved the possibly icy roads and freezing temps to hit the gym. I was fully anticipating it to be engorged with people trying to get in last minute-workouts but I was wrong!

And I actually got a parking spot IN THE LOT plus there were tons of treadmills open. Yay! Thanksgiving miracle. I was very happy to get a treadmill so quickly.

I ran out 2 miles at a decent pace for my rehab.

I was feeling pretty good despite the weird aches and pains I’d been having all weekend. I think maybe it was the cold weather affecting joints and ligaments? Anyways, after the Return to Running workout, I headed to the weights to do something a little different. Supersets!

What is a superset?

I’d been seeing the phrase “superset” all over the internet for awhile and finally decided to see what all the hub-bub was. And it’s been a great addition to my normal workout routine!

A superset is when you do two exercises, one immediately after the other, with NO REST in between the exercises. You can work the same muscle group or two different muscle groups.

Why does a superset work so well?

Because it adds intensity to your workout. I never realized that I was already doing a form of supersets when I would do my core work with the medicine ball. I start on the Row Machine and do a quick few minutes on that and then hop onto the mat to do the Russian Twist with the medicine ball. Then it’s back onto the row machine without stopping to rest. It’s fast, it’s fun and it spikes my heart rate like I was running! It’s incredible!

Supersets can be done with anything…you could do the Row Machine, then immediately do some sets of bicep curls, back to the Row Machine and add The Plank or push-ups; squats then lunges followed by push-ups; basically anything that gets your blood pumping.

Bonuses for Superset Routines:

1. It’s faster. Supersets are something I do when I’m short on time and cannot spend over a hour in the gym. Spiking my heart rate, doing intervals on the treadmill and then fast-weights has been my go-to-quick workout when I’m in a crunch.

2. It breaks up the same ol’ routine. Hitting a plateau happens with EVERY form of exercise. Even lifting weights for 4-6 weeks in a normal way I started to notice that the weights were too light and even if I increased the weight I wasn’t getting as sore the next day as I used to.

3. Confuse your body into losing. Focus on a certain muscle group for 2 -4 weeks before switching to a new muscle group. After you’ve hit all the muscles you would like take a few weeks off and return to a straight set workout plan for another 2-4 weeks.

Some Superset Examples I did last night:

Leg extension/leg curl/calf raise

Cable crossovers/push-ups

Squats/leg extensions

Ab Crunches/Leg raises

Doing the supersets last night broke up the monotony of weight lifting. I also REALLY felt the effects! My muscles were burning as I lifted and I struggled to complete a lot of the sets, but I did it!

Gym Stats:

Time: 1:21

Calories Burned: 585

It was a good workout and I braved the bitter cold to get back to my car. (By the way it was 19 degrees here in Portland this morning!) When I got home Michael made turkey burgers.

And yes it was the third night in a row I ate a burger. 😉

At least it wasn’t another Boca Burger…and we made sweet potato fries!

Dinner hit the spot. I burned a lot of calories yesterday but I didn’t have a ravenous hunger like I sometimes do. Weird.

I’m definitely taking a break from burgers for awhile.

QUESTION: Have you done supersets? What results did you see?

Author: Lisa Eirene

About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and Glamour.com.

8 thoughts on “Why Wednesday – Why You Should Try Supersets”

  1. LOVE supersets! I like them the most because it’s a great way to speed through exercises, and it keeps my heart rate up (I like getting tired and sweaty during workouts – no patience for waiting in between sets!). My favourite supersets are those that mix upper/lower body. Or doing opposing muscles like biceps/triceps.

  2. Supersets are great. I currently do them 3 days per week, concentrating on different muscle groups each day. I love them because it keeps my heart rate in fat burning zone, and I’m also building muscle.

    Example: Today was arms/core:
    Machine Press/Cable curls/Med ball slams
    Tricep push downs/Plank/Seated lateral raise
    Preacher curl/dumbbell shoulder press/standing lateral lifts
    ABC stability ball (no idea the real name for this, but it’s on the ground doing hip thrusts with feet on the ball in 3 variations)/forward lunges/lateral lunges

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