Training psychology can be just as important as the physiology. Often more-so. “Training consistency” is a term thrown around so often you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking it meant doing the exact same exercises every workout, and for months on end. This is a high-speed ticket to boredom, increased injury rates and lack of progress. Instead, consistency is constantly showing up ready and motivated to train. For that to happen some variety needs to be built in to your training. Workout finishers can help you with that.
Finishers are just that. They’re a way to “finish off” your workout – the buttercream frosting on the cake, if you will. They’ll help you burn extra calories, get a great pump, and have you walking out of the gym on a high. And, ready to show up again tomorrow. The metabolic stress they help create will bring some muscle-building benefits with it too.
Workout finishers can be a variety of things. High-repetition sets, mini-circuits or “one-kit” complexes tend to work best. They should to be easy to setup and use exercises with low complexity. They should enhance the efficiency of your workouts, and never add to your time spent in the gym.
Workout finishers are easy to bolt on to the end of any workout, and can be constantly rotated to keep them fun and interesting. The easiest way to do this is to replace the exercises you typically fall asleep doing at the end, and replace them with a finisher-type protocol instead.
Just a few minutes to spike up your heart rate, get a great pump and feel good are all that’s needed. Suspension trainers are a great option for this since you’ve endless exercises to choose from, they’re easily scalable to all fitness levels, you can adapt them on the fly, and they allow your body to move freely. They tick a lot of boxes when it comes to an ideal workout finisher.
As I’ve already mentioned, mini-circuits and complexes are are a good finisher option. Splitting these down in to body parts or movement patterns are also a smart idea. If you’re doing a full-body workout then it’d make sense to do a full-body finisher. But, if for example you were performing a pull- or push-focused workout then you’d need more specific options.
I frequently use finishers when training both my in-person and online clients and athletes. Below you’ll see some go-to suspension trainer protocols. These work with Olympic rings or a suspension trainer with handles (TRX, Jungle Gym etc.) just as well. Add one of these to your next push, pull or lower-body session for a great way to finish.
Pull day workout finisher
Use this suspension complex to pump up you back and rear-delts, while getting in some much needed extra volume for your postural and shoulder stabilizing muscles.
1a – Y-Raises x 10-12
1b – Face Pulls x 10-12
1c – High Rows x 10-15
1d – Rows x 10-15
Perform this series back to back without any rest. Do 2-4 sets with 1-minute rest between each set.
Hip-dominant workout finisher
Use this workout finisher to hit your glutes and hamstrings while also strengthening your low back. For hamstring and knee injury prevention these are ideal to incorporate in your lower body workout routines.
1a – Hamstring Curl x 8-12
1b – Long Bridge x 10-12
1c – Bridge x 10-12
1d – Bridge Iso Hold x 10-12 breaths
Perform these back to back without rest. Do 2-4 sets with 1-minute rest between each set.
Push Day Workout Finisher
For pumped-up pecs and triceps try this combination of extensions, flyes and presses. All the push day essentials worked in to one fiery finisher.
1a – Triceps Extension x 10-12
1b – Chest Flye x 10-12
1c – Push-Up x 10-15
1d – Push-Up (step forward) x 10-15
Perform these back to back without rest. Do 2-4 sets with 1-minute of rest between each set.
Knee-dominant workout finisher
For a more quadriceps-focused finisher then try this blood-pumping finisher. Starting with paused jumps, before heading in to crossover lunges, repeated jumps, then squats to top it all off. Emphasize soft landings with all your jumps.
1a – Paused Squat Jump x 8-10
1b – Reverse Crossover Lunge x 10-20 alternating
1c – Jumps in Series x 8-10
1d – Squats x 10-20
Perform the exercises back to back and without rest. Do 2-4 sets with 1-minute between each set.
Having an element of consistency within your workouts is important, but consistently showing up and putting in the work needs to go alongside that. Suspension workout finishers add variety and energy to the end of your strength workouts. They’ll help you build muscle, burn body fat, and look great naked.
I build Olympians, Cover Models and those who want to look like them. Author or “Ultimate Abs” available in all good book stores.