Tempo Workout

What is Tempo?

When you lift weights it is very important to have control over your exercises. For example, if you are doing a bench press and you push it up, you want to bring it down slowly so you are controlling the bar and the bar isn’t controlling you. Or if you are doing a row on a cable machine, you do not want to pull the cables and then let the cables take you back down, you have to control it. There are many types of tempo workouts, such as 1:1:1, 1:2:1, 1:3:1, 1:4:1, etc. The 1 represents the push/pull/squat/lunge, the middle number represents the seconds you need to take to bring the weight back down, and the last number represents the push/pull/squat/lunge again.

Today we are going to do a tempo workout where you are going to press or pull as hard as you can (using a weight heavy enough for you to struggle after doing 5-7 reps) and then slowly bring the weight back down. For each of these exercises I want you to count to 1 when you lift the weight, and then count to 4 as you lower it. This is called a 1:4:1 tempo.

Do 3 Sets of 10 of These Exercises

Stability Ball Hamstring Curl – Lay on your back with your legs straight and feet on top of the stability ball in the middle. Lift your hips off the ground and pull the ball all the way to your butt, then back, keeping your hips off the ground the whole time. (Bring the ball in for count 1 and count to 4 as you slowly go back to the starting position)Stability Ball

Push Ups – Start on your feet and only go to your knees if you can’t lift your body anymore. (Press up for count 1 and count to 4 as you slowly lower yourself back down)

Standing Lunges – Spread your feet apart with one in front of the other, and just stay in that position to lunge up and down. Balance yourself and do 10 reps on each leg. (Go up for count 1 and count to 4 as you slowly lower your knee to the ground)

Bent Row – Bend down with your knees slightly bent and your back parallel to the floor. Make sure your back is straight and not arched down. Holding dumbbells, pull up to work your upper back. (Pull up for count 1 and count to 4 as you slowly lower the weight down)

BoSu Sit Ups – Lay on your back on a BoSu ball with the middle of your back in the middle of the ball, and your knees bent. Extend back as far as you can and then sit up, using your upper abs. (Sit up for count 1 and count to 4 as you slowly extend back)


Visit the Strength Training and Cardio Training pages for more information on the equipment for this tempo workout.

Foam roll before or after the workout! For an example click here.

If you have any trouble or questions about this workout, please leave a comment below!

Live Well and Live On,


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