Tip: Do Your Workout in Reverse

This old school strategy has several benefits for today's lifters. Check 'em out.

Do Important Things First, Not Last

Most people start their workouts with their favorite exercises and then work down from there. That's understandable. If you love to bench and your ego is invested in how much weight you can lift, your rationale is that you should do that exercise first, while your energy is still high.

This approach certainly works... for a while. But after a certain point, repeatedly hitting that lift super hard when you've had only minimal warm-up can take a toll on your shoulders.

Last Exercise, Worst Exercise

Your weakest lifts and most poorly developed muscles usually correlate to exercises you do late (or even last) in the workout, often because you're too fatigued to give them the same attention you gave your favorite exercises at the start of the session.

Reversing your typical exercise order has several benefits:

  • It can serve to resolve long-standing orthopedic symptoms.
  • It can help to bring up weak points, which not only improves appearance, but also reduces injury potential.

An effective alternative solution is to perform your workouts circuit-style rather than station-style. This way, each exercise receives equal amounts of energy.

Charles Staley is an accomplished strength coach who specializes in helping older athletes reclaim their physicality and vitality. At age 56, Charles is leaner than ever, injury free, and in his lifetime best shape. His PRs include a 400-pound squat, 510-pound deadlift, and a 17 chin-up max. Follow Charles Staley on Facebook