Below is a guest post from Lift Weights Faster author Jen Sinkler. Also, always consult with your physician or fitness professional before attempting high intensity workouts or unfamiliar exercises. Enjoy!

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All variations of the clean and the snatch are a blast to coach. The moment of dawning realization in someone’s eyes when you explain you get to forcefully jump the weight up into the end position. Of course, there are plenty of nuances that vary depending on what sort of implement you’re using, but the aggressive hip extension remains the same, whether you’re using a barbell, kettlebell or dumbbell.

That realization is that this lift is fun.

So often, as adults, we tamp down or lose touch with our desire to truly unleash the beast, if you will, opting instead for moderate movements. The clean and the snatch give you an opportunity to rectify the situation.

Below, I’ve laid out a quick and effective total-body circuit that will develop speed and power, bust up fat, and add to the total work you do. Even though it’s an AMRAP, keep your reps fresh, and rest as needed. Use a heavy enough weight that it matters.

Name: Power Play
Tagline: Go big and ballistic
Time Allotted: 10 minutes
Suggested Equipment: A dumbbell and the ability to get up and get down!
Instructions: Do as many rounds as possible (AMRAP) of this circuit in 5 to 10 minutes. Take breaks as needed (but try to take them at the bottom of the round).

jon-erik kawamoto personal trainer

Dumbbell Snatch

 
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  • Stand tall and place a dumbbell between your feet in front of you so the handle is perpendicular to your feet.
  • Keeping your back flat, hinge at the hips and bend your knees until you can reach the dumbbell handle.
  • Gripping the dumbbell, explosively extend your hips. Use the power generated by your hip drive to lift the dumbbell. Keep the dumbbell close to your body as it rises, and pull only slightly with your arm.
  • As the dumbbell passes your face level, extend and “punch” your arm upward to lock the weight out overhead. The weight should feel weightless for a moment at the top of the movement. If you are pressing out to complete the movement, use a lighter weight or explode more powerfully from the hips.
  • Lower the dumbbell with control to the floor, and repeat for the desired number of repetitions before switching sides.

One Arm Dumbbell Clean

 
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  • Standing with your feet hip-width apart, grasp one dumbbell so it hangs straight down in front of you.
  • Bend your knees slightly into a partial squat, then explosively extend your hips. Use the power generated by your hips, hamstrings, and glutes to “float” the dumbbell up. (You should pull up only slightly with your arms.)
  • As the dumbbell becomes “weightless” in the air, quickly rotate the elbows underneath so you “catch” the dumbbell in the front rack position at shoulder height.
  • Lower the dumbbell back down under control and repeat.

Knee-to-Elbow Plank

 
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  • Start in a straight-arm plank position with your body elevated between your hands and toes.
  • While holding this position, lift one leg and draw the knee up and around toward the elbow on the same side.
  • Lower your leg and return to the starting plank position. Repeat on the opposite side, bringing the opposite knee to elbow. Alternate legs to complete the set.

Superpeople

 
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  • Lie on your stomach with arms stretched overhead.
  • Arch your back and lift your chest off the floor, simultaneously squeezing your glutes so that your feet and lower legs lift off the ground at the same time. Lower your arms and legs back to the floor and repeat.
  • Don’t overreach or look up to avoid straining your neck.

Get Better Faster

 
If you’re looking to amp up your conditioning in other creative but productive ways, I’ve put together a mammoth 130-workout pick-and-choose library called Lift Weights Faster. Complete with a full exercise glossary that includes written descriptions and photographic demonstrations of over 225 exercises (from classic moves to more unusual ones — the Jefferson deadlift, anyone?), a limited video library that includes coaching on 14 of the more technical lifts, five challenge-workout videos, plus a dynamic warm-up routine, I leveraged my background in magazine publishing to create a clear-cut, easy-to-use resource that you’ll want to turn to all the time.

Every workout is organized by the equipment you have available and how much time you’ve got, with options that last anywhere from five up to 30 minutes.

Lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention I teamed up with two-time New York Times bestselling author Diane Sanfilippo to create a wonderful companion resource called Eat Better Faster on eating healthy, whole foods, even when you’re pinched for time.

For more info, click here: www.jkconditioning.com/liftweightsfaster
 
st. john's personal trainingJen Sinkler (www.jensinkler.com), RKC, PCC, PM, USAW, is a longtime fitness journalist who writes for national magazines such as Women’s Health and Men’s Health. A former member of the U.S. national women’s rugby team, she currently trains clients at The Movement Minneapolis.

lisa jumping onto a box

JKC was recommended to me by a fellow runner. I was experiencing injuries, and feeling weak and fragile. When I started with JKC, Jon asked me about my goals and my focus. I wanted to concentrate specifically on running, and preventing injury. Jon developed a program for me that has enabled me to focus on my form and strength and has been flexible enough to enable me to train for many different races. I have been training with JKC for six years, and during that time I have enjoyed Jon and Thomas’s expertise in a very warm and supportive atmosphere.

My original reason for joining JKC was to get some sage advice to help with my running. I had been looking for awhile, came across Jon, met for an assessment, and was quite happy with how that all went. Apart from the running specific strengthening and conditioning approaches, JKC is different from other gyms as I am a fan of the small group sessions where everyone has their own goals and individualized programs. As well, the run coaching is super. All the coaches go the extra mile to make sure you get the best out each training session. They are fantastic motivators! My favourite memory is deadlifting 330lbs. Making a lot of great friends and meeting some really cool people is pretty high up on that list, too.

I’ve been weight training on and off for years but never really had a specific goal or target in mind so routinely stalled out, plateaued or stopped training all together. Before I joined JKC I was definitely in a fitness slump and needed something to motivate me and get me back on track. I did a bit of digging online, looking at various personal training options and gyms around town but JKC seemed like the best option by far. I’ve tried big box gyms and other personal trainers in the past but none of them have had the perfect combination of goal specific fitness programming, welcoming and supportive environment, and the knowledge and passion to back it all up that you’ll find at JKC. Jon and Thomas are great to work with, they know how to motivate you if you’re having an off day and are well versed in all the different ways to make your muscles burn! I also have noticed some major improvements in my deadlifts since I started with JKC and was really happy with the result.

I’ve always been a gym rat, but was getting tired of the same ol’ routine. My better half was attending JKC and encouraged me to try it out. My favourite part of JKC is that is isn’t a gym – it’s a community. Jon and Thomas are awesome, and I love that every time I go I know who’s working out with me and we can socialize while working on our health. Everyone is supportive, encouraging and genuinely looks out for one another. It’s an upbeat and positive experience and I can honestly say that I look forward to each and every workout.

I recently visited Newfoundland for one month, and was looking for a good place to train while I was there. Jon and the team at JK conditioning really took the time to assess what I already knew, and set achievable goals for the time that I had with them. The gym was such a great place to push yourself. It had everything you needed, but more importantly it had a well organized, very knowledgeable, and really motivating group of trainers to push you at each workout. Not to mention a really nice group of other members who also motivated me to go that little bit further. I would highly recommend the gym to anyone who has a goal and wants to find a place to help them achieve it.

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