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Try PHA Training To Build Muscle And Burn Fat In Just 15 Minutes

To burn body fat, you must get your heart rate high. To add size, you must place sufficient stress on your major muscle groups. These two goals appear mutually exclusive, which is why many think it’s impossible to lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously, so they either lift heavy with long rest breaks (great for building muscle but not for burning fat), or do a lot of cardio (good for getting into that fat-burning calorie deficit but devastating for developing big, full muscles).

But there is a solution, and it’s called Peripheral Heart Action (PHA) training. It’s a type of circuit training where moves alternate between working the upper body and lower body so your heart and lungs work overtime to shuttle blood back and forth between your extremities, and your muscles get a solid stimulating workout. Try this session on for size.

How to do the workout

Do the six barbell exercises in order, sticking to the reps detailed, without resting until you finish all the reps of the sixth and final move of the circuit. Rest for two minutes, then repeat the circuit. Do four circuits in total.

1 Front squat

Reps 10 Rest 0sec

Stand tall with feet hip-width apart, holding a barbell across the front of your shoulders with your upper arms parallel to the floor. Keeping your chest and elbows up, bend at the hips and knees to squat down as low as you can, then stand back up.

2 Overhead press

Reps 10 Rest 0sec

Start at the top of the front squat with the bar across the front of your shoulders but your elbows pointing down. Press the bar directly overhead until your arms are straight and locked out at the elbow. Lower the bar back to the start.

3 Reverse lunge

Reps 5 each side Rest 0sec

On your final overhead press rep, lower the bar back behind your head so that it rests on the top of your back shoulders. Keeping your chest up and core engaged, take a big step backwards with one foot, lunge down, then return to the start.

4 Bent-over row

Reps 10 Rest 0sec

Lift the bar back over your head and rotate your elbows to lower the bar down to the start position of the row. Hinge forwards from the hips – keeping your core engaged – then row the bar up to your body, leading with your elbows.

5 Back squat

Reps 10 Rest 0sec

Press the bar back up and over your head so that it rests on the back of your shoulders. Keeping your chest up and core engaged, bend at the knees and hips to squat down as low as you can, then stand back up.

6 High pull

Reps 10 Rest 2min

Lift the bar forwards and over your head so you’re standing with straight arms and the bar against your upper thighs. Go into a quarter squat, then rise into triple extension of your ankles, knees and hips as your pull the bar up, leading with your elbows.

Photography: Glen Burrows; Model: Tom Eastham

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