As the years go by different training styles always emerge and become popular. Currently there are three very common styles being used by most people at the gym. Let’s compare them and give the pros and cons of utilizing each one.
The contenders: Classic Bodybuilding, Circuit Training, and CrossFit.
This form of training is very popular for newer recruits to the fitness world. Often times, programs that are primarily geared towards weight loss utilize circuit training in an effort to maximize cardio while still obtaining a strength training regime.
Pros: Efficient, good for strength and endurance, easy to learn, fast paced
Cons: Difficult at peak time if the gym is crowded, less isolation, builds less mass due to higher rep ranges
Now a lot of circuit programs are based around machine exercises as they are the easiest things for new people to learn. But you can easily make a great circuit routine using free weights. The key is to use compound exercises that cover the big muscle groups. Circuit programs are great for people who have about an hour to workout over 3 days a week (M/W/F) and you can complete 2 to 4 circuits per session for a great workout.
The old standby! This is a time honored tradition that has gotten people in shape for decades. From Arnold to whomever is on the cover of Muscle and Fitness this month, bodybuilding is about creating your body to match the picture in your mind.
Pros: A lot of control about how and what you build, great for strength and size, variety
Cons: Cardio needs to be done in addition, a lot of time is needed
Really most everyone has done some sort of bodybuilding. The broad term covers more than just people competing in fitness competitions. When you are looking to use weights to change the shape of your body you have been bodybuilding. This is the form that most allows you to add size and strength beyond what your body was normally meant to handle in peak condition.
Ah the current crop of exercise programs is lead by this all purpose call to anyone who wants a tight, toned, and athletic physique. It is hard to say anything bad about this program because it is very effective.
Pros: Great workout that covers speed, strength, endurance, and athleticism
Cons: Harder to start for the novice, builds less mass than bodybuilding, best done in a class
The biggest downside to this program is that you need a gym that runs CrossFit classes. This isn’t a program you can just do by yourself at home. But it will be challenging and push your body to a new level. For the active person who wants to compete in athletic endeavors or lead an active lifestyle this is an ideal program for getting in shape and pushing yourself to be the best ‘natural’ version of yourself which is muscular and ripped, but not overly huge.