personal training st. john's

By Thomas King, CSCS, MSc

I get it. For many people, time is a resource more precious than gold. Between full-time jobs, kids’ activities, and chores around the home, time is at a premium. With all these things going on, many people struggle to find the extra time to maintain an exercise regime.

And, who could blame them? Take a look at any of the popular websites for exercise programs or in the latest fitness magazines and you will likely see one type of workout: the bodybuilder’s trusty body part split.

You know the type of workouts I’m talking about, the ones that have you do chest on Monday, back on Tuesday, legs on Wednesday and, so on, for 5 days per week. In our time deprived society, who really has 1 and a half hours to spare five days out of the week?

So, let’s just say you decide to try this workout. You make it to the gym as planned Monday and Tuesday, but bam! Wednesday comes and your kid is sick and home from school meaning no gym time for you and no legs day this week. “I’ll get to it next week”, you say to yourself. But, by the time next week rolls around it’s been 2 weeks since your last leg workout and you can’t possibly progress at this pace. “There has to be a better way,” you think to yourself, and luckily, there is!

Enter Full-Body Training

Full-body Training is a workout split that has you work your whole body in each workout 3 times per week. So now, when the kid is home from school or the boss needs you to work some overtime, you still have the opportunity to train each body part 2 times that week and keep progressing.

So, how would this almost magical workout scheme look?

Luckily for you, I have included a sample program below. These workouts are the bare bones essentials of what you need to keep progressing in the gym. There are no vanity exercises like bicep curls and crunches in them. The idea with these is to hit the whole body as hard and efficiently as possible and get out of the gym. These workouts should take no longer than 40 minutes to complete. If they do, have a hard look at how you spend your gym time. You may realize that: sending that text, talking in the change room, or spending 15 minutes in the sauna is seriously eating up your gym time!

Jon Kawamoto at JKConditioning demonstrates full body training in this video, “Workouts for Busy People”. For more training videos, check out the JKConditioning Youtube Channel.

The Busy Person’s Workout Plan

Workout 1

A1) Deadlift (Can be Conventional, Sumo or Trap Bar): 5 Sets of 5 Reps

A2) Barbell Bench Press: 5 Sets of 5 Reps

B) Single Arm Dumbbell Row 4 Sets of 16-20 Reps

Notes:

  1. Do not rest between A1 and A2. Take 2-3 minutes rest after A2.
  2. For the Single Arm Row, alternate arms without resting. Using the opposite arm is rest enough.

Workout 2

A1) Front Squat or Safety Squat Bar Squat: 5 Sets of 5 Reps

A2) Barbell Overhead Press: 5 Sets of 5 Reps

B) Chin-up or Assisted Chin-up: 4 Sets of max reps

Notes:

  1. Same as above, no rest between A1 and A2, but rest 2-3 Minutes after A2
  2. Why not back squats? This workout is all about bang for your buck and the front squat (or Safety bar squat) requires much more core and upper back activation than the back squat
  3. Log your total number of reps each week for the chin-ups. Aim to beat it the next week. When you break 40 reps, add weight and start again. Rest about 2 minutes between each set.

Workout 3

A1) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat (RFESS): 5 Sets of 5 Reps

A2) Incline Barbell Bench Press: 5 Sets of 5 Reps

B) Barbell Pendlay Row: 4 Sets of 8 Reps

Notes:

  1. You get the idea now, no rest between A1 and A2, rest 2-3 minutes after A2
  2. The RFESS is a JKC favourite. As a glute, hamstring, and quad developer, it easily ranks with any bilateral squat.
  3. The Pendlay row is a bent over barbell row that has the barbell start and stop on the floor between each rep. Great for building whole body tension and taking some stress off the low back. Rest 2 minutes between each set.

There you have it. Everything you need to have a great workout even when you are short on time. If you find 3 workouts per week a struggle to fit in, it is fine to just do two per week, just alternate the workouts such that you have completed each workout twice in a 3-week cycle.

Thanks for reading!

~Thomas

Need help getting started? Get in touch!

I’m 40 years old & started training at JKC in 2015. The gym I was working out at closed and my husband recommended JKC. JKC meets you where you are in your fitness journey and tailors the work to help achieve your goals. I’ve trained with Jon & Thomas pre pregnancy, while pregnant and now post baby and they have helped me enormously to stay fit through all life phases.

I joke with the guys often that I’ve seen no change in my fitness level since joining the gym, but the reality is I’m in far better shape at 40 than I ever was at 30 thanks to them.

I have never previously seen the passion and level of care that Jon and Thomas bring to everyone who works out at JKC. Their knowledge, insight and skills are extraordinary, and they work with everyone individually to ensure the best possible results. The attention to detail and to every person’s specific requirements and goals, and the incredible, constant encouragement they provide, is, in my opinion, what truly distinguishes JKC from any other program in which I’ve participated. I am extremely pleased with the progress I’ve achieved thus far, and it’s largely attributable to Jon and Thomas and the approach they take to training and working with people.

Courtney Sharpe

Nutritional Coaching by Julia Howard

For the past two months I have worked with the JKC team and have never felt better! In addition to a personal fitness plan, JKC’s holistic nutritionist, Julia, worked with me and around my busy schedule to educate me on healthier food options and meal planning. I maintain a daily food log which Julia reviews and provides feedback on and we also have weekly chats to discuss my nutritional goals and potential improvement areas. Julia also helped me to identify and work around dietary constraints which have caused digestion issues for years!

Julia and the rest of the JKC family have helped me get my confidence back! I love starting my days with a good sweat and a healthy breakfast. I understand what foods make me feel my best and my body is well on its way to becoming more lean, fit and happy! I would totally recommend Julia and the entire JKC team!

I had spent a fair bit of time in gyms in my teens and twenties but I turned away from the gym to focus on activities that I enjoyed more. What keeps me at JKC is that I do really enjoy it. I always feel that I’ve accomplished something when I leave at the end of my workout. The environment is really positive and focused on challenging yourself whatever your level of comfort and fitness. I’ve also seen results that I’m really happy with; having someone who really knows what they’re talking about to guide your workouts makes them way more effective and focused than just “going to the gym”.

Shortly after I started at JKC, I sustained a fairly major injury that took me off my feet for several months. When I started to get back to activity, it was very difficult. Jon and Thomas worked hard to tailor my workouts to my goals and what I could do. With their help, I’ve been steadily building back strength and function.

I started strength training at JKC in the Spring of 2021. I am in my 60’s but happy to say I feel much younger since joining this gym. I joined JKC upon the advice of a doctor. I went through some difficult medical issues last year, that’s when one of my doctors recommended strength training at JKC. I have been physically active most of my adult life but mainly running and completed many road races as I am a distance runner. Strength training has definitely benefited me by increasing my stamina and energy. It sure has enhanced my recovery over the past year. I have the added benefit of becoming a stronger runner as well.

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