Alternative Workouts for Burning Calories and Losing Fat

This is New England, you take nice days and use them when you can get one as you don’t know when there will be another. On those days I’m  just not  “feelin’ it” for being in the gym ’cause it’s too damn nice out or some other reason – but I’m in  need of some exercise – I will use an “alternative workout” to my typical program.    My personal training program revolves around resistance training (weight training baby!) mainly,  a GPP/conditioning day(1),  and LISS. My general set up, per a program I developed called Brink’s Hybrid Program, involves specific structured resistance training a GPP/Conditioning/HIIT day approx once every 7-10 days and some LISS.  When, I say LISS (low intensity steady state aerobics) I mean 30 minute walk, or maybe a 40-60 minute bike ride at an easy pace done as much for relaxation and piece of mind, as for exercise.

I won’t go into detail about how the resistance training is set up, but the GPP/Conditioning day has it’s own specific structure I call the Hybrid-HIIT day. However, some days, when I’m just not feelin’ the gym, I will do something else that fits my need for a GPP/conditioning type day. For example:

I took the Prowler and 50lb sand bag to a hill by a local park and did Prowler pushes (using “easy” handles going up and “hard” handles going down hill) using my GymBoss interval  timer for 10 minutes, and followed with one leg st leg dead lifts super set with lunges using the sand bag. I like the one leg straight leg dead lift with the sand bag as it’s just about the most unbalanced darn thing you can do, and you feel it in much more then just the  hamstrings, as so many muscles adjust to keep you from falling over. My legs are always sore after that workout!

Yesterday, I had another  “I’m not feelin’ the gym but want to get some exercise” kinda day (it was 70 and sunny out!) so back to the park I went. This time, I took the drag sled and 75lb sand bag to the park close to my house. I had my interval timer set to 1:30 and did a circuit of:

forward drag sled (30 sec)
1 min rest
(reverse drag sled (30 sec)
1 min rest
push ups (30 sec)
one min rest
one leg st leg dead (30 sec per leg)

Repeat ’till Dead 😎

Did as many cycles of that as I could stand, took 5 minute rest, then reversed the rest/work intervals of 1 min work, 30 secs rest, and did the above for as many cycles as I could stand, which was not many I have to admit!

Back home for a post workout drink!

The above is taking place of what would be the Hybrid/HIIT day in my Hybrid Program – which comes with the Deluxe Edition of The BodyBuilding Revealed Program –  and it’s great for GPP/conditioning and general calorie burning.

Point is, be inventive and creative with your workouts, but within that, should be a structure and a purpose to it which fits into a larger program that ultimately fits your particular goals.

(1) GPP = General Physical Preparedness. For some additional comments on that topic click HERE

  1. ed klein 13 years ago

    Will, enjoy all your articles, even when I think ‘that’s not for me.’ What do you have for a guy 70 yrs old as a regimen that includes cardio? My cardio sucks. On the tread mill, I try to stay at the age 40 – 45 mark for 80% of MBP. My # is 151 and I try to stay in the 136-144 range over 30 mins x 3 wk.
    What’cha got?
    Ed Klein

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Ed, as long as you are medically sound for exercise as per your docs OK, then you would start like everyone else: at the beginning. Age simply means doing it smart vs just doing it hard, but the basics are still the same be you 19 or 99.
      Two, I would look to a blend of strength, conditioning, and flexibility, vs just endurance if you are using the treadmill exclusively. Unless you need a particular level of performance for a specific job (eg, you have to be able to run X miles in Y times because that’s what the job demands)I wouldn’t be overly focused on cardio.
      Low intensity steady state aerobics (fast walk; bike, etc, as non impactive exercise) 2-3 days per week, some functional whole body resistance training 2-3 days per week, and some flexibility work will see your general fitness improve in the major areas one needs for overall health.
      Added to that, the usual “sensible” eating habits (which I bet you already know…) and you will see the changes you want.

  2. georgette pann 13 years ago

    Cool! I like it…we use a lot of that type workouts in our fitness bootcamps

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Rock on Georgette! I wish more people realized how much benefit there is to diversifying their programs with planned structure too.

  3. Jim Hart 13 years ago

    Hi Will,
    I have been following you for a long time and enjoy your innovative and well thought blog posts. You have been a tremendous source of education for me and my clients.
    Keep up the great work. I love my new toy the “GYM BOSS” – Have you seen this new gadget called the “EXERSPY”- wanted to get your opinion on that before I bought one.

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Jim, have not seen the exerspy. I’ll try and look into it. GymBoss is the best $20 I ever spent…

  4. makster 13 years ago

    As always Will, you try to keep things interesting and show us how to do so in the process. It sounds like a different and fun way to have a good workout and not be bored. I have always enjoyed your hybrid workout and cardio.

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Makster, it is fun, and hard! My a$$ and hamstrings are still sore. Reverse sled drags are killer.

  5. William 13 years ago

    Thanks Will for the post I love to mix things up from time to time. People seem to make training so formal at times and not try to enjoy it as much as possible.

  6. Ed 13 years ago

    Thanks Will. I do the gym 4 x week mostly lifting but do 35 mins on the tread mill x 3 per week, at 85-90% of Max/min,= 128 to 136. I’m 70 years old…could probably hit it harder but not until I drop 4o lbs.
    Glad I can do this and feel I’m years ahead…I mean; years behind other guys my age.
    Thanks for all your articles…good stuff this!

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Sounds to me like you are in great shape Ed. Perhaps try mixing it up a bit with the various workouts, etc I cover here.

  7. Sumi 13 years ago

    Good grief Will! You’re a beast. Where do dream up these routines? During LISS?

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Wish I was a beast Sumi! You didn’t see the 2 days I limped around after that workout with my hamstrings glutes so sore! 🙂

  8. Sumi 13 years ago

    Hey Will! Is there any spot specifically on your blog where you provide a summary (teaser) about the Hybrid Program? As in, if anyone at my gym asks me “What am I doing?” I can say hybrid program, baby see: for more. Forgive me if I missed it somewhere here…

    • Author
      Will Brink 13 years ago

      Sumi, there’s not, but there probably should be. The Hybrid Programs comes with the Deluxe Edition of the BBR Program, so it pops up there. It does not get much focus/attention as its own entity, but it probably should. Perhaps we should set you up here with your own section where you can outline your own experiences with it week to week.

  9. Sumi 13 years ago

    Absolutely! I’m down.

  10. Alan 13 years ago

    Hi Will,
    I suffer from hyperthyroidism and although its under control using prescribed medicines I have a problem. I shed a load of weight when first diagnosed (around 35kgs) and was treated with a drug called Tapazole (methimazole) which brought my weight back up to over that of my normal weight, problem is I can't seems to keep my weight down for more than a month before it shoots up again. I eat a healthy well balanced diet and exercise whenever I don't feel too tired, any suggestions?

    • Author
      willbrink 13 years ago

      Really sounds like a medical question Alan. You need to work with your doctor to optimize your thyroid levels. I do have an article here on the topic, but it's focused on hypo vs hyper.

  11. Dave 13 years ago

    cool ideas bro. I'm currently cutting so i'll try them out. I've found the tabata and HIIT training at to be pretty effective too.

  12. Miki Sobery 13 years ago

    HI , can i post articles to your website ? Let me know if you are interested.

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