hang clean


101 Best Workouts of All Time is the ultimate answer to the question “What workout should I do?” No matter what equipment you have available, from a fully stocked super-gym to a pair of mismatched dumbbells in your garage, or nothing but your body weight alone, you can build muscle, lose fat, and sculpt the physique you’ve always wanted.

SEE ALSO: Circuit Training to Maximize Calorie Burn

Most big-box gyms feature a cluster of machines arranged in such a way as to provide members with a “circuit.” Circuits are a gym’s equivalent of a no-brainer, requiring you to move from machine to machine for a prescribed number of repetitions—over and over again, similar to how hamsters or mice might run through a plastic obstacle course. But you’re not a mouse. You’re a man.

We’ve got a better circuit—one that involves free weights, to build more muscle, burn more calories, and keep you challenged for the long term.


This routine prioritizes abs by placing them first. From there, you’ll move on to a light circuit that will burn loads of calories. Finally, you’ll hit the main circuit, which builds strength and muscle.


Perform the first exercise as straight sets. Exercises 2A through 2D are done as a complex, so choose one pair of dumbbells and use them for each move. Use a load that allows you to complete your reps on your weakest exercise in the series. Perform six reps for each of the exercises. Rest 90 seconds and repeat. For exercises 3A through 3D, adjust your equipment and loads as necessary, but perform them in the same circuit fashion. If you choose to repeat the workout, vary the sets and reps you perform on these last four exercises each session. This will help you to continue milking gains from the circuit for months. Rotate between 3 sets of 10 reps, 4 sets of 5 reps, and 2 sets of 15 reps.

Scivation & Muscle & Fitness #Perform21 Sweepstakes Rules



Sets: 2 Reps: 30–45 seconds (each direction) Rest: 60–90 sec.
Place a Swiss ball on the floor and get into pushup position with your hands on it. Now lower your forearms to rest on the ball, keeping your entire body in a straight line with abs braced. Use your elbows to roll the ball in a circular motion, clockwise and then counterclockwise, as if you were stirring a pot.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 0 sec.
Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with feet hip width. Push your hips back and, keeping your lower back in its natural arch, bend your torso forward. Lower your body until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, bending slightly at the knees as needed. Squeeze your glutes as you come back up.


Sets: 3-5 Reps: 6 each side Rest: 0 sec.
Bend forward at the hips as you did in the Romanian deadlift and row one dumbbell to your side. Lower it and repeat on the other side.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 0 sec.
Hold dumbbells in front of your thighs and bend your knees and hips so the weights hang just above your knees. Explosively extend your hips as if jumping and pull the weights up to shoulder level with elbows wide apart, as in an upright row.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 90 sec.
Hold the dumbbells at shoulder level and stand with feet shoulder width. Squat as low as you can without losing the arch in your lower back. Come back up and press the weights overhead.

SEE ALSO: The Metabolic Circuit Training Workout



Sets: 3 Reps: 10 Rest: 0 sec.
Set up as you would to deadlift, only do so in a power rack, resting the bar on the safety rods at about two inches below your knees. Grasp the bar wide, hands about double shoulder width. Extend your hips and stand up, pulling the bar to in front of your thighs.


Sets: 3 Reps: 10 (each side) Rest: 0 sec.
Lie back on a flat bench holding dumbbells. Press them both over your chest and then lower one of them to your side. Press it up and then lower the other hand. That’s one rep.


Sets: 3 Reps: 10 (each side) Rest: 0 sec.
Stand with your feet hip width, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Step forward with one leg and lower your body until your rear knee nearly touches the floor and your front thigh is parallel to the floor.


Sets: 3 Reps: 10 Rest: 90 sec.
Set a barbell in a power rack (or use a Smith machine) at about hip height. Lie underneath it and grab it with hands about shoulder-width apart. Hang from the bar so your body forms a straight line. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and pull yourself up until your back is fully contracted.



Just like with Option A, this one prioritizes abs and employs a range of compound exercises to recruit more muscle groups efficiently while burning calories at a fast rate.


This routine can be substituted for Option A, or combined with it, alternating the two for a total of three sessions each week, resting a day between workouts (and then two days before repeating the cycle). Rotate the sets and reps on exercises 3A through 3D as follows: 4 sets of 5 reps, 2 sets of 15 reps, and 3 sets of 10 reps.



Sets: 2 Reps:10 (each side) Rest: 60–90 sec.
Set an adjustable cable pulley to shoulder level (or attach a band to a sturdy object) and grasp the handle with both hands. Stand with feet shoulder width apart, perpendicular to the anchor point, and arms extended, far enough away from the machine so there’s tension on the cable. Twist away from the machine as if you were chopping into a tree. Keep your feet stationary.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 0 sec.
Stand with feet about hip-width apart. Bend your hips back to reach down and grasp the bar so your hands are just outside your knees. Keeping your lower back in its natural arch, drive your heels into the floor and pull the bar up along your shins until you’re standing with hips fully extended and the bar is in front of your thighs.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 0 sec.
Grasp the bar overhand at shoulder width and let it hang in front of your thighs. Bend at the hips and lower your torso until it’s nearly parallel to the floor. Bend your knees a bit to take tension off your hamstrings. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and pull the bar to your belly.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 0 sec.
Hold the bar at shoulder width in front of your thighs and bend your hips and knees so that the bar lowers to just above your knees. Now explosively extend your hips as if jumping while at the same time shrugging your shoulders and pulling the bar straight up in front of your torso. As the bar reaches chest level, bend your elbows so that your palms face the ceiling and catch the bar at shoulder level, upper arms parallel to the floor. Bend your hips and knees as you catch the bar to absorb the impact and then stand up straight.


Sets: 3–5 Reps: 6 Rest: 90 sec.
Hold the bar at shoulder level. Dip your knees to gather momentum and then extend them explosively to press the weight overhead.

SEE ALSO: The Strongman Total-Body Circuit Training Workout

barbell overhead press


Sets: 4 Reps: 5 Rest: 0 sec.
Set up in a squat rack or cage. Grasp the bar as far apart as is comfortable and step under it. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and nudge the bar out of the rack. Step back and stand with your feet shoulder width and your toes turned slightly outward. Take a deep breath and bend your hips back and then bend your knees to lower your body as far as you can without losing the arch in your lower back. Push your knees outward as you descend. Extend your hips to come back up, continuing to push your knees outward.


Sets: 4 Reps: 5 Rest: 0 sec.
Perform as you did the push press but keep your knees straight and press the bar overhead strictly. Keep your abs braced and squeeze the bar tight throughout.


Sets: 4 Reps: 5 (each side) Rest: 0 sec.
Hold a dumbbell in one hand and stand on the opposite leg. Bend your hips back and lower your torso until you feel your lower back is about to lose its arch. Squeeze your glutes and extend your hips to come up.


Sets: 4 Reps: 5 Rest: 90 sec.
Grasp a chinup bar underhand at shoulder width. Hang from the bar and then pull yourself up until your chin is over it.


Fitness training director Sean Hyson, C.S.C.S., assembled a team of the best trainers in the world to create boredom-beating, plateau-busting routines that cover any amount of time you have to exercise and whatever tools you have available to do it. Programs cover every body part, every implement (barbells, dumbbells, bands, etc.), and cardio. There’s a nutrition plan, too. Pick up what Arnold Schwarzenegger called “a fantastic collection of workouts” at 101bestworkouts.com.