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The following workouts will challenge the fittest and strongest of the elite but can also be adapted depending on your level. The workouts were created and designed by Paul Cheesman personal trainer and are based on the Hero Training concept designed by him as part of Powerful People.
Why these workouts are so good?
These workouts are a mixture of body weight training and resistance training using a single plate weight and a single dumb bell. Using one weight rather than 2 the workout become unilateral witch challenges the core. The moves are also dynamic working through multiple planes of movement using large groups of muscles and burning lots of calories.
Hero training academy basic training
This Extreme body weight workout will push your cardio vascular fitness to its limits working with the Tabata based protocols of 20 seconds maximum effort followed by 10 seconds of rest.
The exercises are grouped into 4 rounds. Lower body, upper body, core and cardio. perform each round 4 times before moving onto the next.
Take 1 minute rest between rounds, no more no less. Perform a 4 minute warm up of jogging on the spot and dynamic 3 dimensional stretches, focusing on the ankles, hips and thoracic spine as priorities.
Lower body 4 x 4
Long jumps (jump as far as you can)
Sit back arms back and jump swinging your arms up for maximum height and distance then tuck your knees in to land soft knees as quietly as possible. jog 2 to 3 steps back and repeat.
Ice skaters with floor touch (side to side as far as you can)
Start on one foot with opposite hand touching your toes, jump off of that leg as high as you can lifting your chest to then land on the opposite leg, control your body speed as you land with the outside leg and bring the opposite hand across to touch the toes. keep the move smooth throughout.
Jumping lunges (jump as high as you can switching legs in the air)
Starting in lunge position using both arms swing up for maximum height leaving the floor, switch position of your legs in mid air, land and control weight and speed coming down then repeat.
Hand plant squat tuck jumps (tuck jump with 3 point landing)
Start with a wide squat stance, one hand on the floor jump up as high as you can tucking knees to the outside of the shoulders and return to the floor switching hand that is touching the floor each time.
Upper body 4 x 4
Push up / plyometric push ups (jumping with your arms)
In press up position, press as hard as you can and remove hands from the floor at the top, returning down to control speed and weight.
Forward arm lunges (lunges with your arms)
Starting in press up position step forward with one hand then perform a press up in this staggered hand position, press hard to come back up to starting position smoothly then repeat on the other side alternating.
Squat to forward dive push up (dive forward push back)
Starting in squat position, fall forward extending the legs and dive onto your hands keeping your knees bent to put the focus on your shoulders control the speed and weight with your arms then press hard to return to the squat position and repeat.
Triceps press ups (make a diamond with your fingers)
Bringing your thumbs and fingers together under the middle of your chest will put a huge focus on your triceps, bring your chest down to touch your hands keeping your elbows tight to the body then press back up to starting position and repeat.
Core 4 x 4
Plank with feet jacks (like jumping jack but in a plank)
Hold a plank position with your elbows down, keeping your upper body strong and core tight, jump your legs out and in similar to a jumping jack type fashion keeping the legs straight as possible throughout.
Spiderman Crawls (same side knee to same side elbow)
Starting in push up position, bend both arms bringing chest down to the floor, lift on knee and bring it outside to the same side elbow using a little twist in the core to get full range of motion.
Place the toes on the floor and drive forward and change sides in a large walking type motion bringing the opposite knee to the same side elbow with the same small rotation of the core.
Atomic push ups (push ups with a squat thrust)
Start in crouched position with hands and feet on the floor, jump your legs out behind to press up position then lower to the bottom, push up firmly with arms and in one motion come back to the top of the press up whilst brining knees back in to starting position at the same time repeat throughout.
Tiger press (Press up challenging the core and the triceps)
start in a press up position, lower to the bottom of the press up then drop back so your elbows are now resting on the floor, use your toes to push forward back to the bottom push up position then press up to the top position to repeat throughout.
Cardio 4 x 4
Starting at the bottom of a press up, press up and tuck your knees to your chest, jump up as high as you can turning 180 degrees in the air to face the opposite direction, land and lower to crouch position, jump the feet out behind you and lower to the bottom of the press up and repeat throughout.
Lateral squat thrusts (challenging the core and cardio)
Start in crouch position jump your feet out to the side holding the core tight, jump your feet back into the centre and repeat on the other side.
Star crumps (Jumping wide and close with arms and legs, will challenge the core)
Start in a close push up position hands and feet very close together, perform a sharp press up and jump both hands and feet out as wide as you can, lower into a press up and as you press back up jump the hands and feet back in to the starting close position.
Sprint in place (sprint as fast as you can but don’t go anywhere)
Literally run on the spot as fast as you can with full range of motion in your arms and legs
Quick reference hero training academy basic training
Lower 4 x 4
Ice skaters with floor touch
Squat hand plant tuck jumps
Upper 4 x 4
Plyometric press ups
Forward arm lunges
Squat to dive press ups
Tricep press ups
Core 4 x 4
Plank with feet jacks
Spider man crawls
Atomic push ups
Cardio 4 x 4
Lateral squat thrusts
sprint in place
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The captain America workouts are inspired by the legendary comic book hero, using a single weight plate in the same way captain America would use a his shield.
The benefits of using the single weight plate means that it puts more focus on core stabilisation, as many of the movements performed have an off centre weight placement, more core recruitment means you achieve that super hero torso of steel look quicker.
The moves are also dynamic moving through multiple planes of movement meaning they work multiple muscle groups at the same time burning more calories, promoting more strength gains quicker and improving multiple factors such as speed, stability, strength and power in one workout.
Halo rotation shoulder and core warm up
Grip the plate and hold in front of your chest, keeping elbows high circle the plate around your head being sure to lift and open the rib cage as your reach behind the head to increase the movement in your upper thoracic spine. Perform for 1 minute 1 direction then 1 minute the other.
Double handed stepping rotational lunges
Stand feet shoulder width apart plate pressed above your head, step forward with one leg and bring the plate down outside the lead leg, eyes follow the plate to drive rotation through the core, control the plate down rotating at the hips to increase recruitment of the glute muscles, then drive up through the front leg to return to original standing position lifting the plate above head with a swift dynamic swing up and above the head keeping elbows straight the entire time.
Perform for 1 minute on a single side alternating per round.
Shoulder loaded rotational lunges
Pick up the plate and grip through one of the handles, similar to a kettle bell racked position bring the plate up onto your forearm and outer upper arm and elevate the shoulder in a lateral raise kind of position.
Holding the plate out to the side, lunge forward with the opposite side leg, once down rotate the plate loaded shoulder in towards the lead leg extending the opposite arm out behind for balance. Then in one swift movement un-rotate and drive strongly of the front leg to return to standing.
Perform for 1 minute on one side and alternate between rounds.
Rotational plate push press
Grip the plate with 2 hand and hold at height of your collar bones, drive through both arms and legs at the same time to lift the plate above your head rotating through the hips and spine as you reach the top, return to the bottom bending arms and legs sitting back into your heels at the bottom to the drive up again to the alternating side.
Repeat for 1 minute alternating continuously.
Forward lunge double arm forward plate press
Grip the plate and start at your chest, lunge forward at the same time as pressing the plate forward away from your body, drive off the front leg firmly to return to standing position and draw the plate back into your chest before alternating to the other leg.
Perform for 1 minute alternating legs.
Plate sumo squat to plate snatch with 90 degree turn
Tack a wide squat position with the plate gripped firmly low to the ground, in one swift movement drive the legs up and pull up sharply on the plate to bring it above your head in one single movements, as the plate is passing your head, jump and lift the legs and jump turning 90 degrees left or right before landing in a semi squat with the plate about your head. return the weight to the starting position and repeat.
Perform the warm up technique as directed for 1 to 2 minutes then perform a 3 dimensional dynamic warm up focusing on the ankles, hips and thoracic spine.
Once all joints are warm perform the 5 functional movements for 1 minute maintaining good form throughout, if form fails rest for a few seconds then continue for the remainder of the minute.
If the move being performed is unilateral, or one sided perform on one side for the entire minute and on the next round perform on the opposite side.
After the minute has finished rest for 20 seconds before moving on to the next move. Repeat the 5 exercises 4 times round 1 minute on each exercise with 60 seconds rest between rounds.
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The Thor workout is inspired by the comic book hero and god of thunder, renowned for his incredible arms forged through lifting his huge hammer, named Mjollnir.
In this workout we replace Mjollnir with a heavy dumbbell and work the entire body dynamically with a major focus on arms to build a set of guns to rival the gods very own.
Double arm swing and cross body warm up
Grip the dumb bell with both hands in a low squat position, drive into the floor with both legs driving the hips forward and raising the dumbbell over head in a swinging type motion. perform in a straight line for 1 minutes then move to the sides working a minute on each side.
When working the sides the finishing position is the same with the dumbbell finishing above the head centrally, but as the dumb bell comes down the torso rotates and the dumb bell comes to the outside of the thigh in the semi squat position. Repeat each side for 1 minute each.
Forward backward lunge with triceps press
Starting in a lunge position with the dumbbell outside the lead leg drive strong up and off the front leg whilst driving the dumbbell up above your head to a position with both feet briefly together then stepping the leg that was in front to a reverse lunge whilst bringing the dumbbell down to behind the head for a tricep extension as you lower to the bottom of the lunge position.
Drive up from the rear leg as you press the dumb bell back up and over head to return to standing then following over to a forward lung and returning the dumbbell back to the floor.
Repeat one side for 1 minute the alternate through rounds.
Reverse stepping rotational lunges with single arm shoulder press
Star with a double hand grip on the dumbbell over one shoulder, step the opposite side leg backwards to a reverse lunge whist lowering the dumbbell down outside the lead leg rotating with the head following the dumbbell for thoracic rotation.
Control the swing then drive up through the legs to return to the double hand grip over one shoulder. Once stable drive the dumb bell up with a single arm in a shoulder press motion before returning down to the shoulder to repeat with the double hand griped reverse lunge.
Perform the move for 1 minute alternating sides each round.
Cross body dumb bell snatch
Start with the dumbbell outside the foot and grip cross the body with the opposite side hand, drive hard through the legs and pull up sharply through the shoulder to come to a full stand with the dumbbell above your head in one smooth movement.
Perform this move for 1 minute on one side and alternate sides each round.
Single arm thrusters
Holding the dumbbell under your chin with a single arm, perform a low squat sitting back in the heels, then drive with both arms and legs driving the dumb bell above your head in one smooth movement. stabilise at the top then control down to the bottom to repeat.
Repeat for one minute on one side the alternate each round.
Dragon slayer with through leg lunge pass
Firstly holding the dumbbell by your side, perform a bicep curl to shoulder press, then reverse it down back to your side.
Lunge forward with the opposite side leg and pass the dumbbell through the inside of the lead leg and return to standing now holding the dumbbell outside the opposite side leg, the perform the bicep curl to shoulder press and repeat side to side.
Perform this exercise for 1 minute alternating sides.
Perform the warm up technique as directed for 1 to 2 minutes then perform a 3 dimensional dynamic warm up focusing on ankles, hips and thoracic spine.
Once all joints are warm perform the 5 functional movements for 1 minute maintaining good form throughout, if form fails rest for a few seconds then continue for the remainder of the minute. If the move being performed is unilateral, or one sided perform on one side for the entire minute and on the next round perform on the opposite side.
After the minute has finished rest for 20 seconds before moving on to the next move. Repeat the 5 exercises 4 times round 1 minute on each exercise with 20 seconds rest between rounds.
Tips for more success
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For more success with these workouts, use an interval timer so you don’t have to keep checking the clock. Use maximal weights for each weighted exercise as some you may be able to go heavier than others.
Use good form at all times and if form fails due to fatigue, take a few seconds to recover then jump back in to finish the set when ready, its more beneficial to perform 8 to 10 great form reps than 16 sloppy ones.
Practice the moves to get better and the more you know the moves the more you can push the intensity.
For any advice or help with the moves when in these workouts, please contact Paul Cheesman
Twitter: @Paul PTCheesman
Facebook: Paul Cheesman Personal Training