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.

I am the oldest client at JKC at 79 years, soon to be 80. I started training at JKC July 2021. I started at JKC because two of my three sons Justin and Michael and their partners Andrea and Keir and one of my doctors recommended JKC. They all train at JKC Now my wife Linda trains at JKC too. My third son Jonathan lives in Kingston. There is a congenial community atmosphere at JKC. People are introduced to each other. There is effective personal training at JKC.

cas dyke

I started training at JKC in 2016 because I had built up a number of muscle imbalances from old injuries and activities like rock climbing which had led to some really bad posture and mobility issues. On top of that some friends had convinced me to sign up for a half-ironman. Working with Jon and Thomas was a way to pull my body back into alignment and make sure it wouldn’t fall apart during my race. The staff at JKC pride themselves on continuously advancing their knowledge, which leads to new and inventive way to address problems, old and new. I got my Dad to start training here and recommended JKC to all looking to improve their strength and fitness.

I’m 36 Years Old and started with JKC in 2013. In the past I’d often have motivated spurts of a gym routine but they would usually only last a month or so. It’s pretty easy to press the snooze button at 530 am when there’s no one waiting for you. The fact that the guys are always on time/prepared and motivated for your session adds a level of accountability to your shoulders to “get out of bed” and bring your best effort each time. From the pressure free trainers to the camaraderie that you create over time with the individuals you’re working out with, JKC is able to offer an experience many other gyms cannot.

I started at JKC in January of 2014 and I’m 67 years old. When I had my Initial Assessment, I knew – almost immediately – that Jon knew what he was doing and what he was talking about. I was overweight, out of shape, and in serious need of someone, like Jon, who could get me back on a fitness/conditioning routine that suited me, my age, my less than acceptable physical condition, my sometimes intermittent RA, and my need for a structured, consistent and yet flexible training and conditioning program that would work for me.

Fundamentally, if I made a choice at all with respect to JKC – it was to continue to come back each week. I have not been in a lot of gyms. To be honest, they used to intimidate me. What makes JKC different is their approach to each and every one of their clients. Jon and Thomas – and now Craig – tailor each training regime to the particular needs of each client. That ensures that the training regime will suit each client upon the start of training and changes as the client improves. It adjusts for any physical setbacks such as injuries and it adjusts for success. It is just that simple.

It is also the consistent encouragement that comes from Jon, Thomas and Craig. That voice that comes to you while you are in the middle of a particularly difficult set – rear-foot elevated split squats comes to mind immediately – that says “good job” or “keep it up” or “just a couple more reps.” To know, in that moment, that you are not alone and the trainer is paying attention to what you are doing. That is priceless for me.

I’ve always struggled with both my weight and anxiety throughout my life. As a writer you live a pretty sedentary lifestyle filled with both realistic and unrealistic deadlines, so I needed something to get me off my butt and to get me moving. JK has been a godsend during this past year and a half in particular. The pandemic has been tough, but workouts with both Thomas and Jon have really helped reduce the stress and strain of a global pandemic, and added an anchor of normalcy back into my life — which has been worth its weight in gold.

JKC has created an incredibly inclusive environment that’s filled with all kinds of supportive folks from all kinds of different backgrounds. For folks like myself, being surrounded by people with such athletic ability can be intimidating in most gyms. It can actually be a deterrent, and it sometimes has been for me. But, at JKC it’s far from that — it’s inspirational. Everyone supports one another. Which is something that’s not easily found in this day and age, inside of a gym or out. Not to sound like a total cheeseball here, but it really feels like a family.

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