Hi all! Happy Sunday!! My favorite day of the week. This weekend has been a busy one so today is definitely more of a relaxing day. We helped a friend of ours, Jeff, get ready for his first bodybuilding show yesterday! He did SO great & ended up placing 3rd in his division. We had such a great time getting ready for it and were able to cheer on a few other friends that were competing as well.
Jeff was Corey’s wrestling coach in college & helped coach him to 4 All American Titles. It’s funny because the roles were switched yesterday when Corey was now his “coach”!
Today we met some friends at the gym for a Sunday Funday leg workout (I will be posting about it this week), stopped by starbs for a pumpkin iced coffee (it is national coffee day, right!?), came home to make some pumpkin powercakes, turn football on, light the pumpkin candles, & relax before meeting my family later for dinner! I sense a theme happening here? Must be the crisp fall weather.
[1 pump pumpkin in a black iced coff – delish post morning workout!]
To start off this weekend, Corey & I had a great back workout on Friday morning. It’s fun to train together & bounce ideas with different exercises back & forth to create an awesome workout.
When it comes to back workouts, I love to switch things up! Our back is a big muscle group so there are a lot of different things we can do to target different parts of the back.
When you are using your back, you are “pulling” the weights as opposed to a chest/shoulder/tricep workout where you are “pushing” the weights. When you “pull” your biceps are also being utilized which is why a lot of people incorporate bicep exercises into their back workouts to really dig in, just like in this archived back & bicep workout.
I personally like to superset my exercises which is when you move from one right into the next without any rest in between. This is a great way to keep your heart rate elevated & keep those muscles working!
Since we can’t really “see” our backs working (unless you have a workout partner that can snap some blog pics for you) I try really hard to have a “mind-muscle connection". Basically, you want to visualize in your head your muscles working and concentrate on using the muscles you are trying to work. For example, when you do a pull down, really focus on pulling with the lats & back to create the movement.
Here are a few of my favorite back supersets (with link how-to’s from bodybuilding.com)
The cool thing about exercises is that you can switch things up simply by changing the placement of your hands. For example, we did pull downs with an underhand grip which changes up the feeling & really hits those biceps as well! We did 4 sets of 8-10 depending on the weight we chose.
I don’t always have a set number of reps that I do because I like to continue to challenge myself once I’ve successfully completely 10-12 reps at a certain weight.
For example, if I can do a 80lb lat pull down for 12 reps, I will then go up in weight & try to complete as many as I can (with proper form) at the next weight. This is how I’ve been able to make progress with the weights I can lift!
Rockin’ the new POWERCAKES TANKS!
I hope you’ll try out some new back exercises & really work on the mind-muscle connection to “feel” each movement & challenge yourself!
As you can see in the above pictures, my goal this week is to “stay positive, be happy, & live free". I think making the decision to do things we love to do is a step in the direction of living free. Doing more of what makes you happy & such a freeing feeling. Staying positive, even if there is something negative around you, is not always easy but it is a step in the happier direction.
So whether it’s trying a new back workout, tasting a new food, creating a new recipe, or catching up with friends or loved ones, I hope this week you add a new goal to your list & do more of what you love to do.
Stay positive & be true to you!
What is your favorite back exercise?
Also, please check out my Q & A guest post on Sincerely Caroline!