The 40/20: Upper Body Edition

The 40/20—My “go-to” workout on the days that I have little time and no creativity. I like to think of it as a muscle building variation of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) utilizing timed work and rest periods for maximum efficiency. The technique is super simple and can be applied to just about any exercise circuit.

To start, if you don’t have one already, download an interval timer app on your phone (the one I use is literally called “IntervalTimer”– its free and great. I’m not receiving any recognition or commission for telling you about this app). Next, create an interval on the app with a 40-second work period and 20-second rest period. The idea is you pick two different opposing muscle group exercises, for example: Push-ups and TRX Rows. For this example, you would start with 40 seconds of push-ups then rest for 20 seconds, then 40 seconds of TRX Rows and 20 seconds of rest. Repeat 3 sets of this cycle for a total of 6 minutes.

Sounds easy, right? The first time you try this you will be crawling on the floor after your last set of push ups—in 6 minutes, you’ll feel like you worked out for an hour. It is an absolutely awesome workout that combines great muscle building exercises with the fat burning effects of High Intensity Interval Training. You can also mix this workout up to target other muscle groups; try and pick one push exercise and one pull exercise. Other examples of this could be shoulder presses and pull-ups or dips and curls. If you’re feeling crazy or you’re actually just the hulk, try 4 or 5 sets for a total of 8 or 10 minutes instead.

Side note: If you don’t have a TRX, you should buy one and cancel your gym membership because you wont need it anymore, haha! No but really—it’s an awesome, small investment and you can do just about ANY exercise using your own body weight with the TRX.

Here is a link to the TRX I use with the door jam attachment.

(This is an amazon affiliate link and I will receive a small compensation for your purchase through my website at no extra cost to you!)

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