New Workouts for Competitive Athletes

Do you need more motivation to build those abs? New workouts may be just the ticket to help you push yourself further. Take on the competition.


CrossFit is based on military training programs and has been described as “gymnastics meets Olympic lifting.” It entails group sessions in gyms known as “boxes.” The mindset behind CrossFit is that for results, you have to regularly challenge your body with diverse, high-intensity moves performed as fast as possible. You could do handstand push-ups, squats, pull-ups on bars or rings, deadlifts and snatches (lifting a weight very fast over a long distance).

Body benefits: An amazing fat-burner. A 2013 study discovered that CrossFit-based, high-intensity power training reduced body fat percentage and increased aerobic capacity.

Why competitive people like it? A lot of boxes have apps and member log-in areas on their websites, where you can log your results and compare them with other CrossFitters. You can also join CrossFit Games.



Speedflex is a group class that lasts for 30 or 45 minutes, involving high-intensity circuit training on machines and on the floor. Circuits on the floor involve exercises with kettlebell and burpees. What’s special about Speedflex is that weights aren’t added to the machines – they respond to your own force.

Body benefits: An excellent low-impact resistance and cardio workout, where you’ll burn fat and build muscle without the soreness.

Why competitive people like it? At the beginning of the class, you’re hooked up to a heart rate monitor and you can track your heart rate on screens throughout the session – green signifies you’re not pushing yourself, while red signifies you’re working at high intensity and burning maximum calories. Since everyone can see how hard you’re working, you won’t want to slack.



Brutal endurance races are big news. Tough Mudder is a 10-12 mile race involving extreme obstacles, such as an enclosed structure filled with a safe tear gas-type substance that you have to crawl through. And HQRecon is a “stealth” outdoor sport, where the goal is to race through a series of zones and avoid being caught by patrol guards.

Body benefits: Because of all that squatting, ducking, lunging, and crawling, these are whole body cardio workouts. In addition, they are as much a test of mental as physical agility.

Why competitive people like it? With Tough Mudder as well as HQRecon you can work as a team. What is more, many HQRecon events start and end in a pub, making this a very social sport.

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Written by Jenny Nickelson

Jenny Nickelson has been a sports enthusiast since childhood. Because of her deep love to water, she started training swimming in early years. Today she swears on variety and does it all: from swimming, running and cycling to fitness, skiing, dancing and mountaineering.


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