Most of us are time-starved these days and it isn’t always easy to keep up with our fitness routine. While you may think that your once-a-week jog around the block for 30 minutes is sufficient workout, we’re telling you it may not be the most efficient. What fitness experts are advocating these days as a better way to reach fitness goals: Circuit training.
Contours Express, an international franchise gym is one of the strongest advocates for circuit training. In fact, the women-only gym has designed a 29-minute circuit training that targets to tone eight major muscles groups, and helps with calorie burning, toning, building of stamina and improving flexibility.
How does the Contours Express 29-minute circuit training works?
There are 16 stations set up at the gym, you start from any station. Once you hear a voice prompting you to “change station” you move on to the next one. The setup is such that you alternate between strength-training stations that also help with toning, and aerobic stations that help build stamina and burn calories. After two rounds of circuit training, you’ll finish with stretching exercises.
Circuit training like this one offered by Contours Express is popular with women because of how fun and easy it is to attain the most mileage from the routine. The time commitment needed is also less, making it perfect for busy women.
Speaking to Daily Vanity, Chong Wan Kit, Master Franchisee of Contours Express Singapore & Malaysia explains how this training is different from spending the same amount of time on a treadmill.
“Using treadmill is mainly cardio exercise and only working out your legs. The rest of the body are being neglected and you don’t get to build strength. Weights training, which is sometimes refer to as strength training, gives the benefit of ‘tone and firm’ and very important for female is the benefit of increasing bone density to prevent osteoporosis,” Chong explains.
“In circuit training, you are moving to the next exercise at periodic interval so there is no over-exertion of any part of the body. We use specially-designed cardio boards that have shock absorption capability, which cushion the impact of running or jumping so it is better for your joints as compared to running or jumping on the floor,” she adds.
It’s not just the cardio boards at Contours Express that are optimised for better workout, the equipment used during training are also designed for women. What this means is that they’re generally smaller than typical equipment, making it easier for women of average height to grab the handle bar. Weight plates they use, for instance, have 5 lbs increment, which means women can use lighter weights with more repetition for the purpose of toning and firming, and not worry about building bulky muscles.
For a 29-minute workout session that offers so much, does it mean that you’ll need a certain fitness level to start on it?
The good news? Anyone can do it. Chong says that the workout is catered for “anyone aged 8 to 80”. This is because a fitness analysis is done right at the start of enrolment so that a programme can be designed according to your fitness level and personal goals. Typically, you’ll start at an easier pace, and then progressively build up your strength and stamina according to your fitness level.
And if you’re a beginner or have health conditions, trainers are on hand. While most other gyms provide such services at a fee, trainers from Contours Express support you at no extra charge.
“It is important to have trainers teach you the proper form and technique of doing exercises and using machines. Trainers are also there to assess your current fitness level, design a suitable workout programme for you, track your progress, change your programme as you improve, and motivate you to do better,” says Chong. These trainers are available during staff hours, while members can access the gym from 6am to 11pm all year round.
If you can invest 29 minutes for an all-rounded guided workout that are designed specially for women, give this routine a shot! Contours Express has outlets all over the island, so you can definitely find one that’s convenient for you. Find the nearest one to you here.
Try it for yourself!