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Dumbbells allow you to do a variety of resistance training exercises almost anywhere.
Dumbbells are very versatile and can be used to do almost any resistance training exercise. However, since they take up a lot of space and are cost-prohibitive, many people only have a few pairs around the house. For example, to get a good workout with 10-pound dumbbells, you will need to be creative and understand how to get more from less. Regardless of your strength and fitness level, you too can get a decent workout with 10-pound dumbbells.
Time/Volume training really works well with limited equipment, according to вЂњMetabolic SurgeвЂќ author, Nick Nilsson. Instead of establishing a repetition goal, you will do each exercise for a set amount of time. For example, you would set a timer for 10 minutes and begin with a set of three to six repetitions. Rest for 10 to 20 seconds and repeat. Continue this rep and rest schedule until the timer goes off. Choose one exercise for each major muscle group. Your workout might be arranged like this: Legs - 10 minutes of dumbbell squats; Back - 10 minutes of bent over rows; Chest - 10 minutes of bench presses; Shoulders - eight minutes of upright rows; Triceps - eight minutes of dumbbell kickbacks and Biceps - eight minutes of dumbbell curls. See the Resources section for an exercise guide.
Authors of вЂњThe Ultimate Power-Density Mass Workout 2.0," Jonathan Lawson and Steve Holman, recommend a technique known as TORQ, which stands for "tension overload repetition quantity." Due to very high repetitions, TORQ allows you to get an excellent workout with lighter weights. As with Time/Volume training, you will only need to do one exercise for each muscle group. Begin with a set of 35 to 40 repetitions. Rest for 30 to 45 seconds and do another set of as many reps as you can. Usually, you will end up getting 20 to 25 reps on the second set. Rest for another 30 to 45 seconds and, for the final set, work either to exhaustion or to the point where you can no longer do a controlled repetition. The great thing about this workout is that you can increase or decrease the reps as needed to fit your strength and endurance level.
Positions of Flexion
Another Holman and Lawson technique called POF, which stands for Positions of Flexion, incorporates three specific training angles to get the best workout possible in the shortest amount of time. For each muscle group, do a compound movement, a stretch exercise and a contraction or isolation move. For example, when training the chest, you would begin with three to four sets of bench presses. Next, do two or three sets of dumbbell flyes, emphasizing a full stretch at the bottom of the movement. Finally, end with two or three sets of incline dumbbell flyes, focusing your attention on fully contracting the muscles. For this type of program, you might want to try the following training split: Monday - legs and calves; Tuesday - chest and back; Wednesday - rest; Thursday - shoulders and abs; and Friday - triceps and biceps.
Adding advanced techniques to your program can help you get great results even if you only have 10-pound dumbbells. Rest-Pause is one such technique where you do several sets back to back with only a brief rest or pause in between each. For example, you might do a 12-repetition set of dumbbell curls, rest 10 seconds, do a 10-rep set, rest 15 seconds, do an eight-rep set, rest 20 seconds and finish with a set of five to six reps until exhaustion.
The one-and-a-half technique means doing half a repetition before completing the entire exercise movement. On a dumbbell bench press, for example, you would lift the weight halfway up, return to the start position and then complete the full movement, which all together would count as one rep. Lastly, lowering the weights very slowly, over a six-second count, is another way to get in shape using limited equipment. According to Holman, this creates a fat-burning stimulus that can last up to 72 hours after your workout.