Adding finishers or conditioning circuits to your workout can give you that extra push and can be as much of a mental challenge as a physical challenge.
..and more fun than getting a numb butt from sitting on the exercise bike every time.
Don't get me wrong, cardio definitely has its place in your workouts but it can get stale. Finishers will get your heart rate going and spice up your workouts.
There's something about feeling like you've left it all on the gym floor and survived that can build determination, motivation and a few laughs the next day when you try to get out of bed.
On the flip side, as they can be pretty demanding, it's not a good idea to use them all the time. I do prefer to mix them up along with steady state and interval cardio.
There are endless combinations and variety you can use to build a finisher or a conditioning circuit. I usually find that keeping it pretty simple works best, both for ease of remembering what you're doing and performing the exercises safely.
Some of my favourite basic combinations are 2 exercises back to back - 1 upper body and 1 lower body - or 3 exercises back to back - 1 upper body, 1 lower body, 1 ab exercise
My favourite way to use them as finishers are timed sets. You can set a time limit and aim to complete as many rounds as possible in that time or complete a certain number of rounds in as quick a time as possible
A few examples:
a) Squats 1 - 10
b) Press Ups 1 - 10
Complete 1 squat, 1 press up then complete 2 squats and 2 press ups etc until you reach 10 squats and 10 press ups. Record how long it took to complete and aim to beat that time.
a) Dumbbell Shoulder Press - 12 reps
b) Sprinter Lunges with knee raise - 12 reps
c) Press Up Plank with Lateral Reach - 15 - 20 seconds each side
Complete as many rounds as possible in 8 - 10 minutes
a) Stability Ball Stir The Pot - 5 each direction
b) Romanian Deadlift - 5 reps
c) Dumbbell Uppercut - 5 reps each side
Complete 3 - 5 rounds as quick as possible
Have some fun and be creative with your ideas!
This is my, mostly, Personal Trainer musings and information which I hope you'll find helpful!