Whether it is ripped from a magazine or downloaded from a subscription service, I am a huge fan of following programs at the gym. They help me efficiently get through the gym, focus on the right muscle groups on the right days and they usually come with some ripped looking folk that serve as motivation. In a previous post I praised Cathe Friedrich, the staple and bedrock of my fitness journey. Alexia Clark is up next.
I am now in the 6th week of her program, which is the longest I have consistently followed any program. Even with Cathe, I usually do a 4 week period before switching to another of her programs (of course, partially because there are so many good programs of hers to choose from). Alexia Clark has developed an engaging, ever-changing subscription program.
How the program works
- Every night you will get an email from Alexia that includes the schedule for the week, a quick video (if needed) to explain specific moves or cadence, the link to the new workout on her site, stretching videos and some other motivational stuff
- On the site www.alexia-clark.com a side bar navigation shows workouts by date
- Each link will then take you two 5 circuit sections with text instructions, number of reps and sets and GIF/videos of each workout (which are super clean, crisp and easy to view by the way)
- There are home and gym workout options
- The website is very user-friendly and I typically log in from my iPhone when at the gym
- It’s simple login > click the right navigation pane > click on the date > follow the workout
- Or click through the email link > follow the workout
The workouts and equipment
Here is a little more insight into her workouts:
- Gym option – I rarely see her using your typical machines like the smith machine, leg press, leg extension, etc. She does use cables a lot and today I just saw her using the assisted pull-up machine. Her go to pieces of equipment of barbells, barbells, balls, kettlebells resistance bands and loops, plates and benches/boxes
- Home option – Because she rarely uses big pieces of equipment the home and gym options are quite similar. She will substitute barbells for dumbbells and kettlebells but I would still stock up on resistance bands, light to medium dumbbells and have something to jump on (like a bench)
- She loves squats, dumbbell complexes (meaning multiple moves in one shot), shoulder work, back work, core work, deadlifts and lunges. Resistance band work is huge as is work with various size medicine and gym balls
- It may be in my head but I feel like her upper body work focuses heavily on back and shoulders with biceps and triceps as less of a focus. This could be because those muscle groups are hit during lat pull downs and other work. She does add bicep curls to compound movements and I did just see triceps-focused work today
- There are always 5 circuits with 3-4 exercises per circuit. Some circuits will involve EMOM (every minute on the minute), straight rep work or 30-40 second intervals. Other circuits will focus on 1 or 2 movements only for the interval or EMOM training
- The last 2 circuits are always optional and Alexia has said herself not to beat yourself up for not completing the optional circuits. I never do the optional circuits and sighed a breath of relief when she mentioned that on Instagram
- The required 3 circuits will take you around 45 minutes
Some of the key things I love about the Alexia Clark workout program:
- 45 minutes and I can easily burn 400+ calories
- Given it is a circuit my heart rate stays anywhere from 140 during straight reps, to 170-ish during 30-40 second intervals, 180 for jumping and other high intensity work – bottom line, I get my cardio in while performing her metabolic conditioning routine
- Because of the way the circuits are set up you can breeze through 9-12 different TYPES of exercises (remember you’re doing 3 sets of them per circuit) in a 45-60 minute period. THAT is how you get results. I could go through much less just doing straight reps
- It is easy to scale up or down for beginners to advanced exercisers
- Easy to use and mobile-friendly site
- This is a big one for me: While I said her workouts are imaginative and variable there are still staple moves and concepts that continue from week to week. This is important for me as I can judge how my fitness and strength changes over time. I have already started increasing weight or moving through circuits faster. It’s also convenient as I don’t have to take time reviewing the videos for new moves every time. I skip the GIFs for repeat moves
- On the note above, one tip – I do recommend quickly breezing through the circuit prior to working out so you can spend time breezing through the circuit and keeping your heart rate up vs. pausing to see what is next
Because what would a review be without the downside? If you follow her on Instagram (and you should) she posts workouts to Instastories and on her feed. Daily. Religiously. I have noticed that those workouts have more inventive and complex moves compared to her subscription plan. Not sure if that is by design. So, if you find a super complex, odd move (because her workouts are very unique) just know that same move may not be on her subscription plan (yet). You could technically save the money and follow her workouts BUT it is not as easy to follow and review an Instagram story over and over again while at the gym and there are no instructions or rep/circuit guidelines on the feed.
One other thing that I don’t really care about but I’ll write about it anyway – While she has a separate nutrition e-book, there is no set nutrition plan for her subscription. I NEVER follow the plans so it is not a deal breaker for me. She has some charts on nutritional guidelines under the nutrition section but that is about it.
Overall, I’m super happy with the program. I’ve lost inches and it is largely due to the quick pace, number of sets/circuits/reps you can get in, the consistently elevated heart rate, the variety of exercises that target a single muscle group and the number of muscle groups targeted in a single session. Did that make sense? Basically, you’re hitting a lot of muscles, a variety of different ways and performing a high volume of sets/reps for each given muscle group in a short amount of time.
This is the perfect workout to take with you on the road, to hotel gyms, at your home gym, etc. I’m going to rely on Alexia Clark to work off my Thanksgiving and holiday glut and take me into the new year feeling fit.
Would love to hear your thoughts on her workouts!