The power of finishers - how a simple 'tweak' will get you lean and ripped

Getting ripped and burning fat should not be complicated.

Sadly, the dearth of information out there has muddied the waters, with every expert espousing their theories as being the "best" or the only way to get ripped and show off your six-pack.

The truth is, it doesn't need to be complicated. Essentially, all it involves is preserving most of your muscle mass while at the same time shedding excess fat. Simple? Yes. Easy? Certainly not.

To get "ripped" though you need some muscle to "expose", so if you're a pencil-neck who has never lifted a weight in your life, go and build some muscle (this article is a good place to start) and then come back and read this article.

If you've been lifting for a while and have built up a bit of muscle mass, this article will show you the way to shed excess fat and expose the muscle you've built.

If you're a lady, then "ripped" is probably not what you're after, you most likely want to lose fat and be nice and firm and toned, however, to get firm and toned, you need to lift weights. If you're afraid of lifting weights then this article will help.

What you're about to read below is what has worked for me and for many of my clients. It's not a program, but rather a series of tweaks or changes you can make to your existing strategy or "add-ons" to your existing workout that will help you shed your excess blubber.

Step 1:

Sort out your diet.

Cut out any excess sugars and "white carbs" (breads, pastas, white rice, pastries etc.)Replace the carbs you've cut out with cruciferous vegetables.

Make sure to get plenty of lean protein.

Step 2:

Try intermittent fasting.

It's not for everyone, but I've personally experienced great results with it, and so have many of my clients. Sadly, it doesn't seem to work particularly well with women, so if you're a lady, place more focus on step 1.

Step 3:

Add a "finisher" to your workouts 4x per week.

A finisher, is an exercise or series of exercises done as intensely as possible in a short period of time, (5-15 minutes) which targets most of the major muscle groups and causes a very strong metabolic response (EPOC.)

Chad Waterbury in an article for T-nation explains it far better than I can:

"Basically, it's the longest 5 or 10 minutes of your life. And just like the name implies, it should be performed at the end of your workout. There are two reasons why.

First, your available energy stores are lower than normal after a strength training session. This depletion creates the ideal time to augment the demand for energy since your metabolism will trigger hormone-sensitive lipase in adipocytes in order to provide this energy. Translation: you can stimulate a helluva lot of fat burning at the end of a workout.

Second, if you do a finisher correctly, you won't want to do anything afterwards. A finisher should be exhausting up to the edge of nausea, and even though you might feel a bit queasy for a few minutes, you can take pride in the fact that you stoked your fat-burning engine that had been stored away since last summer. The proton accumulation and muscle acidification that caused the nausea are a powerful stimulus for fat loss."

What are some examples of finishers:

Finisher #1:

  • 60 seconds of jump rope as fast as possible, immediately followed by 10 burpees
  • 45 seconds rest,
  • Repeat 5 times.

Finisher #2:

  • 60 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 60 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible
  • rest 60 seconds

  • 50 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 50 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible
  • rest 50 seconds

  • 40 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 40 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible
  • rest 40 seconds

  • 30 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 30 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible
  • rest 30 seconds

  • 20 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 20 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible
  • rest 20 seconds

  • 10 seconds kettlebell swings as hard as possible
  • 10 seconds kettlebell clean and press as hard as possible

Finisher #3:

Choose a weight that you can do 10 overhead presses with, then in a circuit fashion do:

  • 10 high pulls
  • 10 bent over rows
  • 10 front-squats
  • 10 squat thrusts
  • 10 overhead presses
  • rest 45 seconds
  • 8 high pulls
  • 8 bent over rows
  • 8 front-squats
  • 8 squat thrusts
  • 8 overhead presses
  • rest 30 seconds

  • 6 high pulls
  • 6 bent over rows
  • 6 front-squats
  • 6 squat thrusts
  • 6 overhead presses
  • rest 20 seconds

  • 4 high pulls
  • 4 bent over rows
  • 4 front-squats
  • 4 squat thrusts
  • 4 overhead presses
  • rest 10 seconds

  • 2 high pulls
  • 2 bent over rows
  • 2 front-squats
  • 2 squat thrusts
  • 2 overhead presses
So, there you have it, a simple, but by no means easy approach to getting ripped and shedding excess fat.

Get your diet sorted, try intermittent fasting, add a finisher 4x per week to your existing weight training program and you'll be rid of your blubber, showing off your hard-earned muscles in no time!

For some extra finisher ideas check out:

http://www.t-nation.com/workouts/fast-abs-4-fat-burning-finishers

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