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Six workouts that have stood the test of time

by Tom Halpin on Wednesday 14 November 2018


Have you heard of the Armageddon workout routine? Apart from sounding awesome, it’s a seriously big workout routine for your arms. But, just like dieting fads that come and go, so do exercise workouts.

Some of the best workout routines are ones that have been around for donkey’s years.  

So, why go with the classic workouts?

The answer is precisely because they have stood the test of time. If you want to boost your competitiveness in sport, or you’re coming out of a dusty 3-month winter comatose, these 6 classic workouts will have you huffing and puffing all the way to achieving your fitness goals.  

1. Push-ups
We know right… we’ve all done them before. But even if you disliked your 7th grade PE teacher for making you do push-ups, don’t despair. Push-ups are much more than just upper body work. They strengthen the core abdominals, while also working the pecs, deltoids and triceps. The good news is that both the toes and knee variations of the push-up are worthwhile, so what are you waiting for?   

2. Basic bodyweight workout
Don’t have a gym nearby? You can do bodyweight workouts at home. This is similar to doing circuit training outside of the gym. Everyone will approach this differently, but you can do exercises like push-ups, jumping jacks, forward and backward lunges, burpees and V sit-ups. You can even use shopping bags for dumbbells. The next time you’re strolling home, you can pull your elbows up, or target your upper arms and shoulders. 

3. High frequency and high-volume workouts 
For the serious gym junkies in the house, combining a mixture of heavy weights and high-intensity interval training is the go-to routine for the like of professional athletes and bodybuilders. But you don’t even have to be an elite athlete to benefit from interval training. Remember that no complete workout guide would be without the man himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Arnie combined the deadlift, squat, clean and jerk, bench press, snatch and clean, and press lifts into his bodybuilding workouts.  

4. Classic gym circuit 
Circuit training is good if you’re short on time and happy with an all-body workout. It’s also a good intro for new gym members, a prelude to what to expect from your first time at the gym. Circuit training is great with classes or flying solo – you won’t be twiddling your thumbs and waiting in between exercise and sets either. Make it so that you’re lifting heavy enough weights on the last few reps too. You could do your circuit 3-5 times in a gym, and involve things like leg presses, dumbbells squats, hamstring curls, bench presses, cable rows, dumbbell bicep curls, tricep press downs and crunches.   

5. Cardio exercise 
Not all workouts have to be anaerobic based. Long duration cardio workouts have the added benefits of not only improving fitness but also improving both physical and emotional health. It can reduce stress and lower symptoms of mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.  

6. Tai Chi
No workout guide is complete without some mention of spiritual practices or disciplines, like yoga, pilates or Tai Chi. We’ve picked Tai Chi because it has stood the test of time – literally. Based on Qigong and martial art techniques from ancient China, its principles are founded on the ancient Chinese philosophy of Taoism, which stresses the natural balance in all things. It’s still one of the most popular exercises today and can be adapted to any workout for its health benefits – without the self-defense component.  

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