What do you think of when you hear the term "functional training?" If you're anything like me, I had no idea what it meant. Essentially, this term means to train for real life activities. This type of training increases your performance and also increases fat loss.
Real life activities for me include running up/down stairs multiple times with huge laundry baskets full of clothes. It may even be to bring large bags of salt down the stairs for my water softener in my basement. Let's not forget the groceries! This is a weekly task, bringing in big bags or boxes of food. For young momma's, it may be carrying your children or car seat. I had some serious guns back when I had babies!
So, how does functional training incorporate into your gym sessions? When you go to the gym, you are training so you can complete these day-to-day tasks without a sweat.
Here's a great workout that will help prepare you to face these chores while increasing performance and fat loss.
Supplies: Barbell and weights, 10 - 25 pound plate (depending on strength), kettle bell or dumbbell
Overhead Barbell Bulgarian Squat (3 sets, 15 reps per leg) Keep arms straight, while holding barbell overhead. Place one leg up on coffee table or bench; keep to an up and down motion with torso upright.
Weighted Jump Lunges (3 sets, 10 reps per leg) While holding weights perform jump lunges, alternating legs.
Rotational Plate Walking Lunges (3 sets, 15 reps per leg) While holding a 10-25 pound plate close to your chest, lunge forward and rotate body and plate with leg that is forward. Then take another lunge step and rotate body and plate to other side.
Kettle Bell Goblet Squat (3 sets, 15 reps) Hold kettle bell or dumbbell close to torso and squat low, so elbows can fit inside of knees.
Fit tip: Keep the torso upright, do not lean over with dumbbell. This is to strengthen core along with legs.
Dead Lifts (3 sets, 15 reps) Use your barbell or dumbbells. Place weight on floor, and tighten your core and straighten your legs as you bend down to pick up weight. Back is flat, almost like you can place a plate on it. Now, lift weight up and tighten bootie as you come up. Bring weight back to floor and feel the stretch in your hamstrings. This counts as one rep.
Kettle bell or Dumbbell Glute Swing (3 sets, 15 reps) Keeping core tight, and legs slightly wider than shoulder width, swing weight down between legs. Bring weight up a little higher than shoulders and squeeze your glutes to bring weight up. Make sure lower back and abs are tight working together.