Two Ways You Can Make Squats Fun and Memorable
Editor’s note: This is a guest post/workout routine from Josh Morrow who can be found at Muscle Bits, a strength training and nutrition blog.
Squats can be fun? Yeah, right, who am I kidding? Now that I’ve got your attention, let’s cut to the chase. Deep within the archives of fitness history, I’ve come across two lost but not forgotten ways you can make squats a little more interesting. Not to mention, both will absolutely kill your legs, and if you are stuck in a plateau, you’ll blast through it with these techniques. On to the good stuff, shall we?
1. One and a Half Squats. Just as the name reads, you’ll perform one and a half squats per rep. To put it simply, squat down as you normally would, but when you are on your way back up, stop midway, hold for three or four seconds, and return back to the bottom. Ascend back to the top position and congratulate yourself, you have ten more of these. Try to remember care bears and cookie monsters or you will shout every four letter curse word in the book.
Now, for safety purposes, you will need to choose a lighter weight that you can handle because this will completely cook you. Too much weight and you’ll find yourself flattened across the gym floor. Also, I highly recommend you recruit a spotter from the water fountain if you haven’t got one. You may find that this exercise is best suited as a finishing move in your leg workout. The premise behind One and a Half Squats is greater fiber recruitment. By keeping the leg muscles under constant tension, you will recruit both Fast Twitch A and Fast Twitch B fibers for greater muscle development and strength. Expect soaring testosterone levels following this exercise (for men, obviously).
2. The Twenty Repper. The Twenty Repper technique is simple. Normal, full-range squats performed at twenty reps. Twenty reps of love. The only twist you will add to this: you choose a weight that you can lift for ten reps. You will want to make sure you have a spotter though, in case you lose control of the weight. The idea here is that you (or your partner’s shouting in your ear will) push yourself beyond the limits of fatigue to put additional stress on the muscles. Similar to the phenomenon experienced with One and a Half Squats, you will recruit more fibers and surge your testosterone through the roof.
As sadistic as these two methods may seem, I can assure that you’ll leave the gym knowing you are primed for growth. You may want to plan on sitting around or at least stretching for the next few days because you are going to have one sore butt. Have fun and remember to lift responsibly!