If you’ve been around my blog for at least a few weeks, you’ve probably seen me mention my awesome TRX a few times! I use it almost every week in my Tuesday Trainer videos (which you’ll see recycled in this post, in case you’ve missed any!). In this season of indulgence, I thought I would share a little bit more on my favorite piece of exercise equipment.
I first learned about the TRX from my sports chiropractor when working on some chronic upper back pain (bad posture, computer all day, I sleep funny, the list goes on…). He has a TRX in the office that we used to do some strengthening exercises to target my areas of weakness. I was shocked at how sore these plain-looking straps made me – and how little space they took up in the room.
After skipping too many “homework” workout sessions, I finally realized why I have never been consistent with strength training – I had to go to the gym. It’s funny, because I actually spend a good bit of time in and around a gym for swimming, biking (occasional spin class), pilates (I was taking a weekly reformer class at the time), and running. I don’t always run at the gym, but I do lead a weekly Run Club group that starts in the lobby.
With all that time at the gym already, I just didn’t want to spend any more time there. If I could do my strength training at home – that excuse would be gone!
So what is a TRX? It was invented by a Navy SEAL as a way to keep his men in shape while in the field. It’s a fairly basic tool made of straps, handles, and “rings” that is adjustable to different lengths and can be attached to a door. The TRX Suspension Trainer allows you to change the resistance by changing your body angle. For example, in the video below I demonstrate a Back Row. To make the move easier, I would stand up straighter. To make the move more difficult, I move my feet closer to the door.
While I almost always use the door anchor attachment indoors, you can also attach these to trees, a swing set, or really anything outdoors and workout anywhere! It packs up into a small bag, about the size of a sourdough loaf of bread (I’m not good with measurements, so “same size as” is how I measure). We even took it with us to China and worked out in the hotel rooms!
Strength Training has been a key to injury prevention for me. Before I made time for regular strength training, I was struggling with injuries a bit in my training. I missed a few marathons due to a stress fracture and then hamstring strain. When I finally took strength training seriously as part of an injury prevention plan, I have been much stronger & healthier.
TRX does not help me prevent my more recent injuries – like being run off the road on my bike during Ironman or tripping during a trail race and busting on my knee – but I guess we can’t expect miracles!
Because you are using your whole body to perform the move and provide the weighted resistance, you are engaging your core with every move. More bang for your buck!
So when do I squeeze strength training into my busy schedule? Usually, I roll out of bed in the morning and immediately hang up the TRX. The dogs watch patiently (usually) until I’m done and ready to take them out. PJs and bare feet are appropriate workout apparel in our house!
How long does a TRX workout take to complete? This is going to vary widely based on what you’re trying to accomplish, but in my normal maintenance mode (injury-prevention and mild/moderate strengthening) I am done in about 20 minutes. I’ve found a lot of great workouts online that I’ve used as inspiration for my own TRX workouts – so much information available.
So now you know what I love the TRX for my strength training and hopefully learned a little something new about my favorite piece of equipment. How about you – what’s your favorite piece of fitness equipment? Are you a TRX enthusiast and have a great workout to share?
Don’t forget to enter the Superfood Snacks Giveaway!! You have through Saturday (12/17) to enter – winners will be announced on Monday. I’m trying out the Rafflecopter widget for entries, let me know what you think. If you need any help using it, don’t hesitate to email me!