The Slow Burn Workout

This workout is both efficient and effective and provides a no-nonsense approach to weightlifting and building muscle. I recommend this be done every other day for up to five weeks at a time. You will lift in the mornings and do 30-45 minutes of cardio in the evenings. On your days off; stay out of the gym. It’s okay to walk or hike but no lifting or intense cardio. These days are for rest and muscle building and adding more work to muscles that are already beaten down will only hurt your results.


Finally and I cannot stress this enough you must be sure to consume at least your bodyweight in grams of protein every day. I recommend that you supplement with a low or zero carb protein blend to avoid the need for constant eating. Also add creatine, and L-glutamine supplements into your daily schedule to maximize muscle growth and endurance. While a pre-workout product such as NO-Xplode isn’t required it can help with intensity and focus. Do not exceed the manufacturer’s dosing suggestions and discontinue for one week after every four weeks of steady use.


Slow Burn is a total body circuit consisting of eight basic moves completed in order. Do three sets of each exercise to complete failure using a spotter when available and a safety rack if not. Use a weight at least 70-85% of your one rep max for no more than 10 reps and preferably 8.


Each workout will begin with a series of core moves to help strengthen the midsection. Do these first focusing on fully activating your abs and oblique’s during the exercises and keeping them engaged at all times. Speed is the enemy here; we want slow controlled forceful movements to keep muscles under constant tension. After three sets of heavy lifts we will follow with one lighter set of 10-15 reps done quickly to help flush lactic acid from our muscles


Core Movements

1. Plank, hold for at least 60 seconds
2. Side Planks, hold for at least 45 seconds each side if this is to easy balance a 10lb dumbbell on your hip during the move.
3. Myo Crunch on Swiss Ball, 10-15 slow reps- hold a light weight over your head and perform a crunch keeping the weight in line with your torso at all times, arms fully extended. Concentrate on allowing your back to arch and stretch at the beginning point of each crunch then hold the contraction for 3 seconds at the top of each move.
4. Hanging Leg Raises, 10-15 slow reps- the goal here is a slow controlled movement, legs straight and parallel to the ground at the top of each rep, hold for a count of 3 then lower and repeat.



1. Barbell Shoulder Press, 3 sets of 5-8, follow with one light set of 10-15 performed quickly but with good form. Warm-up with a series of shoulder circles before beginning then focus on controlled slow presses, taking a few seconds to clench your shoulders and traps at the top of each movement.
2. Barbell Back Squat, 3 sets of 5-8, 1 set of 15. Use a weight that allows you to raise and lower to a count of three pausing at the bottom to squeeze your glutes then power back up. It may be necessary to use lighter weights then you are used to using this slow cadence.
3. Straight-Leg Deadlift, 3 sets of 10. For this move focus on completely all reps with perfect form, mentally concentrating on the glutes and hamstrings during the move.
4. Pullups, 3 sets of 5-8, 1 set of 10-12. The first 3 sets should be done with weight added and a slow cadence pausing at the top to squeeze the shoulders together. Bring your chest to the bar.
5. Barbell Bent Row or Chest Supported Rows, 3 sets of 5-8, 1 set of 15, again use a heavy weight but one which allows good form and a pause at the top of each move, then take 3 seconds to lower the weight to the starting position again.
6. Barbell Bench Press, 3 sets of 5-8, 1 set of pushups to complete failure. Each of the first 3 sets should be done at different angles, incline, flat, decline, but all should be a slow cadence of 3up, pause, 3 down pause and back up.
7. Barbell Drag Curl, 3 sets of 5-8, 1 set of Dumbbell Hammer Curls for 15 reps. This is the one exercise where a slow cadence and perfect form are essential to size and strength gains. Your Biceps will already be tired from your back movements, so you will be tempted to rock and cheat. The drag will isolate your biceps and encourage rigid form.
8. Farmer Carry with Shrug and Lunge, 3 sets of 20-30 steps. This is a 3 part move, hold two heavy dumbbells and begin traveling lunges at the top of each step before changing legs shrug your shoulders and hold for 2 seconds then lunge and repeat.


This is a bare bones workout; done with maximum intensity, good, form, and a slow cadence it will add both size and strength. It is not intended as a sports conditioning routine but can be added to a sports workout as long as you follow the advice about taking a day off after each day of training and doing the lifting routine but separate your workouts by at least 5 hours or more. Combine this with cardio or interval training for weightloss and body recomposition.

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