So as I stated in the first Nerd-Core Fitness article I want to give you, my aspiring Jerdlings, the tools necessary to live a healthier lifestyle! Do you think Batman is in such amazing shape, and able to beat down cadres of goons, because he sits in front of that giant supercomputer in the Bat-Cave all day? Is Green Arrow able to pull back that monster longbow and fire off volley after volley of trick arrows because he exercises his thumbs during hours of Xbox gaming? Hell no! They also didn’t start as the buff action heroes of your favorite comics either… They weren’t flooded with gamma radiation, they weren’t bitten by radioactive groundhogs, they just dedicated themselves to building their bodies up until they achieved physical perfection. And it all started somewhere with a beginner workout.
Just like the archetypical heroes journey these favorite characters have undergone, I am going to provide you a path to your own “Heroes Transformation“.
So where do you start? Do you join a gym? Do you go buy a subscription to Men’s Health magazine and a Bowflex? Do you hire a personal trainer? Negatory citizen! Instead, you are going to listen to your old pal the Jerd and his fitness wisdom!
We are going to start slowly here; and I promise, that no matter how out of shape you are, you will be able to complete these beginner workouts and you will start to get in better shape. That being said, what can you do with no equipment and no formal workout space? A lot! Luckily you can build muscle, burn fat and get in great shape just by using your own body weight!
I am going to take you through a beginner workout that can be completed in your apartment, in a park, wherever… in a very short amount of time. It is what is commonly referred to as a circuit workout. You will ultimately complete this routine by doing each exercise in succession, with no breaks, until the series is complete. Then perform the rotation of exercises again as a whole after a short rest period. Then once more.
The goal, as a beginner, is to develop proper form so that all the correct muscles are being utilized. That way you can work your way up to a comfort level with the routine so that it can be done at a good pace, increasing your cardio as well as your muscle strength. This lower body workout will start developing the foundation of our “Heroes Transformation” journey, our lower body workouts from this point forward and the muscle groups necessary for leaping from building to building (Um, please don’t actually do that though)!
I hate to have to say this, but make sure you are cleared by your personal physician for physical activity before undertaking these, or any, exercises. With that said let’s get to it!
Step One: Warm up!
Please, I beg you, do not skip this important step! Take 5 minutes and get your muscles warm and your heart rate elevated. Do a few jumping jacks, run in place, jog up and down a flight of stairs a few times or whatever (as a martial artist, I do some footwork drills and shadowboxing personally) but no matter what please do not workout cold! After you are warmed up move on to the circuit itself.
If you need a more formal routine, or more convincing that this is a vital aspect of your routine then check out this article – How To: Warm Up Properly!
Step Two: Super Legs!
Remember, the goal is proper form for the beginner’s workout before speed or intensity. If you are a new-comer to personal fitness you might feel as though you cannot do a full set of repetitions (Or “reps” in gym parlance… Lingo!) of a certain exercise, and that is okay! Do as many as you can with proper form and then next time you try this beginner workout, you do a few more until you are completing each exercise in its entirety.
Squats (24 reps)
In-case you want a video reference
Lunges (24 reps)
Jump Squats (12 reps)
Once you have finished 24 Squats, 24 Lunges and 12 Jump Squats you have completed one set! Congratulations!
Repeat as you see fit with no more than a 30 second to 1 minute rest in-between. My goal for you, before you move further down the Heroes Transformation road, is to do 3 sets of this circuit with proper form, speed and explosiveness. Once you have the form down, and your legs start getting conditioned, this beginner workout should take no longer than 5-6 minutes including your rest breaks between sets.
Step Three: Stretch!
After your workout your muscles have been slightly traumatized from contracting, and they need to be stretched back out to allow for proper healing and use. I will cover my special stretching methodology in another post, for now just make sure to gently stretch out your legs, like you learned back in the days of feeling awkward in gym class, for a couple of minutes after the beginner workout.
Step Four: Rest!
We want to avoid over-training and, let’s be honest, the first few weeks of your Heroes Transformation you will experience some soreness the day after you workout. That is normal and to be expected. Give yourself a day in-between workouts to recover. That is the perfect time to crank out some of the latest DLC for your favorite game or catch up on your backlog of comics, and you can do it without a guilty conscience knowing that you are working to better yourself. You have earned the simple pleasure of getting your nerd on, so enjoy it!
You have just finished your first step on your own personal “Heroes Transformation” and begun your life as a Jerd in your own right. Bravo!
Remember that getting in better shape and developing a healthy lifestyle takes a serious dose of great responsibility Mr Parker. You have taken the first step on the long, and rewarding, journey to being a Jerd and a hero. I salute you for it! Now let’s stay with it, shall we? Make sure to check back in next week for your next beginner workout!
Please keep me abreast of your progress and hit me up with any questions you might have! Make sure to sign up for our newsletter and get your FREE e-book! Also subscribe to the YouTube channel (if you want access to our Nerd-Core Fitness exercise videos), follow me on Twitter, and like us on Facebook and Google+ (there is content on both not available here on the site.) There are so many different ways for you to get your daily dose of Jerdly goodness so don’t miss out!