If you’ve tried HIIT and traditional weight training and still are not as lean as you’d like to be, it’s time to do hybrid routines for fat loss/burning fat: Bring your physique development to the next fat-cell-shrinking level.
The word “hybrid” refers to a fusion of two things. In this case, it means combination training that involves compound exercises—those that work several muscle groups at the same time.
Classic compound exercises are the squat, deadlift, power clean and bench press. Hybrid muscle training in the truest sense means combining two or more compound exercises.
You’ve probably done hybrid isolation-to-compound exercises, e.g., a biceps curl to a shoulder press; or, a hybrid compound-to-isolation exercise, such as a bent-over dumbbell row to a triceps kickback.
What this article is about to cover takes this concept to a whole new dimension that makes the just-described routines seem like simple warm-ups.
This is in part due to an additional variable: moving from one exercise to the next with no rest unless absolutely needed. This maximizes fat burning by forcing muscle cells to become more efficient at converting adenosine triphosphate to energy.
On top of that, the added component of cardiorespiratory drills will really make fat burning skyrocket. The formula basically is:
- Cardio-centric lower body exercise fused with anaerobically-centered upper body exercises—worded more simply, highly intense cardio mixed with upper body strength training.
There’s a name for this kind of training: metabolic, because it’s fatigue based and thus ignites fat burning, resulting in a significant after-burn effect: round-the-clock elevated metabolism.
Hybrid workouts with a metabolic approach can be done by trainees of all levels who are healthy, though beginners will need to take longer rests. These workouts are grueling and will sock it to you. How else do you expect stubborn fat to drip off?
The International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism (2000) reports that this type of workout creates an after-burn of 48 hours for men and 16 hours for women.
One point needs to be made clear: Hybrid workout routines will not make you as big as possible.
If you want a body as big as a titan, this plan won’t work for you.
If you want to have impressive muscular development without being “huge,” and also be ripped, this program is definitely for you.
A person’s body-type tendency factors into how they will develop.
Mesomorphs (naturally strong and prone to hypertrophy) will develop more muscle no matter what program they’re on; ectomorphs (naturally slender or lanky) won’t hypertrophy as fast as they could with this program, and endomorphs (slower metabolism, round and soft bodies) will love this regimen for its fat stripping effect.
Goal For Every Workout
If you’re not heaving for air, and if your muscles aren’t on fire, you are not engaging in true metabolic, hybrid muscle training.
Another point needs to be clarified: Avoid pacing at all costs. Pacing is what you’d do if you had to jog one mile nonstop. You’d pace yourself to cover the distance.
If you sprinted all-out, you’d cover maybe around 100 meters, give or take, before having to stop for a rest.
To cover a mile, you’d have to spread yourself thin by pacing. This is a grand example, but the pacing phenomenon can also occur within a short drill. You must avoid this because it will prevent maximal after-burn. To avoid pacing, you must take adequate rests.
Using that mile example again, imagine you’re told you can either jog 5 mph to cover this distance, or, sprint all-out 100 meters at a time. In order for each sprint to be your all-out effort, you’d have to rest a few or several minutes in between sprints.
If you rested only 30 seconds in between sprints, then each subsequent 100 meter dash would get slower and slower until you were merely trotting them.
You’ll burn tremendously more fat (via the after-burn) if every one of those 100 meter dashes is your absolute, hardest, fastest sprint, versus a steady paced 5 mph jog. This principle must be applied to these hybrid workouts. The more you rest, the harder you can push through the drills.
Hybrid Workout Routines
Here are some examples, and you’ll quickly get the picture of just how this is done. Don’t get sloppy with form. Each cluster of exercises represents one circuit. Each circuit is done for 10-15 minutes, rotating through the exercises until the time is up.
However, remember the no-pacing rule? You cannot do these for 10 minutes nonstop. You must take a rest—when you need to, but only for long enough to recover enough to pick up where you left off with all-out exertion. Do not time your rests.
Resume when your body tells you it can once again go all-out. Stay with this rule for the 10 minutes. Less fit people will need longer rests. Jumping back into the drills in the name of “I don’t want to rest so long” will force you to pace.
Circuit #1 (10 minutes):
You hold light dumbbells the entire time; they never leave your hands. How light they should be depends on the individual, and you’ll need to experiment.
You may end up choosing a weight that’s too heavy to last 10 minutes. Next time use a lighter weight. Remember, go all-out, as full a range of motion as you can.
- Squat jumps: 10 reps
- Pushups: 10 reps (dumbbells to floor, hands on dumbbells)
- Squat to shoulder press: 10 reps
- Stationary lunge to shoulder press, alternating legs: 10 reps
If this seems like no big deal, remember, it is nonstop until you’re ready to drop from breathlessness and searing muscles. Rest just enough to resume with maximal effort. Do not pace!
Circuit #2 (Harder, 15 minutes):
- Chin-ups: five reps
- Barbell squats: 5 rep max
- Power cleans: 5 rep max
- Pushups to failure
- Mountain climbers as fast as possible: one minute
Circuit #3 (Hardest, 15 minutes):
- One-minute jumping on and off of 12-inch stool
- Deadlifts, 10 rep max
- One-minute sprint on treadmill
- Bench press, 8 rep max
- Prisoner squat jumps: 12 reps
You can create an almost endless number of hybrid workout routine circuits. As you can see, they will promote hypertrophy, but not maximal hypertrophy. However, they’ll bring on stellar fat burning.
- No pacing
- Go all-out, and
- Rest as needed, just long enough to recover for more all-out effort.
Previous Article: Training To Failure vs. Not To Failure/Near-Failure
Next Article: Reverse Pyramid Training For Strength And Hypertrophy