Let’s admit it: stress hinders muscle building, but workouts help build muscle AND reduce stress. Yes, the gym cannot act as a sole replacement for therapy. It had to be said. Nevertheless, I am damn sure that this is a hell of a great way of releasing all the emotion and tension after a rough time. Whether it is the stress of work, home life, or relationship or whatever – you really need to blow off some steam and let it go. And the gym is one great way to do it. Besides it being incredibly helpful at blowing off that stressful steam and letting it go, it is, as we all know, the best way to build muscle and strength.
Therefore, regardless if you’re searching for a good stress reducing method or for a way to build muscle and strength, you will find working out an amazing way. It is an amazing therapy and one of the best things is that you achieve both of these great benefits at the same time.
Yes, there is running or yoga. Many would say that running is very meditative and that yoga is very relaxing. But let’s agree that sometimes, it’s just not enough. In fact, most of us will agree that when you actually need to let it all out, it is the lifting that you need. And you should be lifting heavy!
Running and practicing yoga have their benefits. You could actually mix them up with working out. But I think most of you will agree with me: when tensions are running high and you are feeling frustrated, throwing some weights around can become a real lifesaver.
Workouts will help you reduce anxiety, and stress and deal with other issues such as insomnia, lack of confidence, and many others. So, here are some heavy-lifting workouts to help you blow off some steam!
You are going to need the following:
- Loaded sled
- Heavy dumbbells
- Turf space
- Aim for 6 rounds of 50 meters (approx. 150 feet).
To perform it, stand up straight with a weight in each hand. Now, with your chest up and “proud”, have your shoulders back and down and walk forward. Walk with the short heel-to-toe steps. You will want to aim to carry the equivalent of your body weight. In case you do not have any dumbbells that can equate to your body weight, you may try to load a trap bar instead with proper plates.
Between each carry have a rest of about 1 minute and 30 seconds.
- Again, aim for 6 rounds of 50 meters (approx. 150 feet).
To start this exercise, you should stand tall behind the sled with your arms out straight and in a lean forward position. Try to drive the sled going in a fast, however controlled manner. Again, you should aim to push the equivalent of your body weight. And once again, you should have a rest of about 90 seconds between pushes.
High Box Jump
- For this exercise, you should aim at 5 sets of 6 reps.
Get into a squat position. Bring your arms back behind your hips. From this position, push forward with a strong forward arm swing. You need to tuck your knees once you’ve fully extended your legs. Also, aim to land softly in the same square position that you started with. Or at least, try your best to land this way. After that, stand tall and lock your hips in order to complete the move.
Rest as long as you need between the jumps. But aim for about 2-3 minutes.
Upper Body Power Play
For this workout you’re going to need the following equipment:
- Slam ball
- Pullup bar
Medicine Ball Slams
- Go for 5 sets of 15 reps each.
The key to this exercise is to use a relatively lightweight (about 4 kg or 9 lb). Yet, you should move vigorously in order to burn calories. The point is that this power ball (slam ball) is an extremely helpful exercise for reducing stress and blowing off that build-up steam. After completing this exercise, you won’t only make sure you’ve cut some calories, but you’re likely to feel less frustrated.
Begin with a proper form, with your feet shoulder-width apart. Reach to full extension with your ball overhead and try not to bend your elbows. And then, with your full force, slam the ball down between your feet. Aim to slam it down as hard as you can. Pick the ball up and repeat again. You should rest for only one minute between rounds.
Dumbbell Bench Press
- Pretty sure you already know what you’ve got to do. Complete 4 sets of 10 reps. But you should aim to go heavy with this one. That’s why you need the proper dumbbell for those 10 reps.
Sit on the end of the bench and have a dumbbell resting on each thigh. Lay back. Guide the dumbbells over your chest with your legs. Place your feet on the ground to start.
As you have the dumbbells in your hands, angled in and with your thumbs over your collarbone, squeeze your shoulder blades together and down. Press the weights over your chest into a wide V shape and return to the start. Lock your elbows as you perform it. Experiment with the weights if required. Rest for about 1-2 minutes between sets.
- You should aim for as many reps as you can for this exercise.
It doesn’t matter what you do, just do not try and clap your hands during the pushups. It is important because this could lead to catching a finger. Needless to mention it could cause unnecessary injury. Do it wisely and safely. With a proper form. You just need to simply explode from the bottom of the movement and land immediately into the next rep.
You should try to get through four sets plyo push ups. I would recommend combining the dumbbell bench press and plyo push ups. Each time you complete the bench press, start plyo push ups with little to no rest in between. Just rest between each round for 90 seconds or no more than 2 minutes.
- Aim for 10 sets of 5 reps
EMOM stands for Every Minute On the Minute. So, as you can guess, for this exercise, you will need to use your clock. You should do the first reps with the clock running. On average, it should take you approximately 15 seconds or so. The rest of that minute is your recovery time. Then, once that minute runs out and the next minute starts, you start to go again. Repeat until you complete 10 sets.
The Leg Day You Need
If you really want to build big leg muscles, get strong legs, burn off lots of calories, and blow off some steam with lots of stress reduction, you will find this leg workout perfect. For completing it, you are going to need the following:
- Leg press
- Squat cage
Paused Back Squats
Have five sets of only three reps. Have the bar in the squat rack. Grasp it as far apart as you can, but make sure that it is comfortable. Then come under it. Step back and stand with your feet at shoulder width with your toes turned out slightly. As you take a very deep breath in, bend your hips and knees in order to lower yourself down. As soon as you’re at your full depth, pause there. Then extend back again through the hips and push your knees to stand back up.
When you are close to a mental breaking point, there is almost never anything better than lifting a heavy bar. It will make sure to “fix” your mind very fast. Rest for 2 minutes between each set.
Go for the proper weight to complete five sets of eight reps. Romanian deadlift is very popular and you may already know how to do it. If you don’t – here it is. Regardless, make sure you do it with a proper form.
Take hold of the bar at shoulder-width and hold it in front of your thighs. Bend your hips, lower your torso, and also allow your knees to bend. Do it until you feel your hamstrings stretching. Instead of touching the floor, I would recommend you focus more on a hovering RDL. Then extend your hips to come back up.
PS: If you notice that your back starts to round, you should know that you are either lifting too heavy, or you are going too low. That’s good to know even for long-time lifters because many make this common mistake. It is good to have someone watch your form. Or at least stand in front of the mirror from the profile position to watch for it.
Once again, you should aim for a two minute rest between each set.
Kettlebell Swing to Squat Swing
Three sets of 12 reps. Don’t forget to adjust the weight if needed. Start off with a typical kettlebell swing. But then, at the top of the move, you should use the weight of the bell in order to balance as you squat and rise as you swing.
- NOTE! It may not be comfortable at the beginning. So it could take you a couple of reps in order to get into the rhythm. However, you’re going to get the hang of it fast.
Barbell Split Squat
You should aim for three sets of eight reps on each side. Get a barbell in the back squat position and load it up accordingly. Stand up straight with your feet hip width apart. Don’t forget to keep your knees soft, pretty much as in any other exercise form of this type to avoid knee injuries in the long run. Step back two to three feet so that your torso is going to have an equidistant position between your feet. You should keep the ball of your foot on the ground. Also, you should have your heel raised. This is the starting position.
Lower your right knee toward the floor. Do it until it is bent at an approximate 90-degree angle. From this position, press through your left heel in order to rise up and return to the starting position. You need to complete the set (do all the reps) with one leg. After you complete it, switch to the other one.
Stress Reduction The Takeaway
I’m pretty sure that these are some pretty different workout types from your common ones. But if you follow these workouts, I’m pretty sure that you are going to find them extremely effective both for muscle and strength building as well as for letting out that built-up stress and frustration. These workouts are extremely helpful in reducing your anxiety, stress, frustration, and any other mental issues. Therefore, instead of taking all those negative feelings home with you, I would strongly recommend you head to the gym. With these killing workouts, you are sure to let it all out.
You will come home in a much better mood and overall better mental state. You can benefit from these workouts as you will feel better and look better. Everyone else around you can benefit from these workouts. They can follow this plan or they would simply need to deal with happier and calmer you. These workouts are a great method to make you feel better, more confident and look better. They make a great path for all of your daily stress in life to disappear. It’s obvious that your partner and loved ones will also feel better when you start feeling better and happier.
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If you’re feeling that stress takes over your life, you should head to the gym to de-stress from your day. Once it becomes a habit, you are going to find that stress is no longer a problem. This new hobby will make you focus not only on your body but on your mind too. It will make you feel better and look better as well. You will notice that with each workout, there’s less stress. And in case something bad happens – go to the gym. It’s a great way to spill your anger. With a strong body, you will have a strong mind! So, if you had a strenuous day, working out can greatly help!
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