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Upper Body Strength Workout

Posted Dec 01 2010 12:00am

While back in Ottawa for the holidays I decided to hit my old stomping grounds, the Ottawa Athletic Club . I worked there as life guard when I was a teenager and then was a member there for four more years before moving to Calgary. While a member there I trained for powerlifting meets with the Ottawa Strong. It was fun to go back and check the place out after their 2 million dollar renovation!

If you live in Ottawa this has to be one of the best gyms to actually lift weights in. They have tons of free weights but what I really love is that they have 4 with lifting platforms attached, plus a dedicated for . This is one of the few gyms in the city that marries hard core lifting with the fitness club atmosphere.

As you can imagine I pretty much just parked myself in a power rack and had some fun for an hour. Here is the workout I did with no belt or lifting shoes because I left that stuff back home
    • joint circles and stuff
  • Front Squats
    • started with the bar and added 50lbs per set until I maxed out for a single PR
      • somehow I managed to hit a new personal best without even using a belt! It just goes to show you how sometimes a new atmosphere and fresh attitude is all you need
    • 8 sets total
  • Front Squat Holds
    • added 50lbs and did 5 sets of stand ups in the front squat position
    • this drill really works your abs and upper back, plus prepares you for heavier front squats down the line
    • did a set of deads between each set of Front Squat Holds
    • added 100lbs a set for 5 reps until I maxed out for a single
    • dropped it down 100lbs and did a 1 x 5 to add some volume
  • GHR
    • 3 x 10 to finish off the glutes and hammies
  • Hanging Leg Lifts
    • alternated between GHR's and Leg Lifts
    • controlled swing all the way upside down and slow temp on the way back down
That is it. So if you are on holiday's and don't have your gear, don't be a wimp! Get your but to the gym and get your swole on right now! You never know, today could be the day you hit a new PR!

If you aren't sure how to front squat or why, just watch this video below. Front Squats will make you stronger and more athletic, so work them son!

Trap Bar Deadlifts are a fun alternative to regular deadlifts. They will work your legs harder, and personally I feel the lift in my lats more. Deadlifts are awesome, so mix up the variations to allow for more awesomeness!

Nathan Donahue

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