What Muscle Groups Should I Work Out Together?
You should work out muscle groups that are complementary to one another when you exercise.
Training complementary muscle groups is great for HIIT workouts because you are able to move from working out one muscle group, right into the next, without rest.
When you do this, you are able to benefit from strength gains, and also aerobic endurance because your heart rate stays elevated. You aren’t taking any rest between exercise moves, and so you are getting the best workout and also making the most out of your time.
What muscle groups specifically should I work out together?
You should work out muscle groups in various parts of the body, segmenting the body into grouping that are complementary to one another. Divide the body into 3 groupings: legs, torso, and arms.
For the legs, train the quads and then the hamstrings, together. Do 3 sets of 2 exercises for each of these muscle groups.
The same goes for the torso. Abs and lower back are complementary muscle groups, so do some sit ups, and then move into lower back extension right away without rest. Do 3 sets of these 2 exercises until moving on to something else.
The complementary muscle groups of the arms are the biceps and triceps. Do tricep dips, and then move right into bicep curls. Don’t rest when you move from one exercise to the next. Complete 3 sets of these 2 exercises.
Why is training these muscle groups effective?
Training complementary muscle groups is effective because these complementary muscle groups work together to enable movement and stability of that particular area of the body. Abs and lower back work to stabilize your core. Triceps and biceps work to provide movement and power in your arms. And the quads and hamstrings are the major muscle groups of the legs.
When you strengthen these muscle groups together, you are building proportional strength and stability in each part of the body. Your lean fitness and strength gains will take out as a result.
Jon Pearlman is a former standout tennis player at Harvard, ATP-ranked touring pro, and author of The Lean Body Manual. He founded Mission Lean to share his unique formula for lean body fitness and nutrition, an approach that took over a decade to develop and perfect. He is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Nutrition Specialist.