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Benefits of a Full Body Workout with Zara Zolkos

Benefits of a Full Body Workout with Zara Zolkos

If your goal is to burn fat and lose weight, focussing on strength-building and exercises are perfect for targeting your entire body. Full body workouts are perfect for both losing weight and gaining muscle. All of your muscle groups are targeted to effectively and efficiently promote muscle growth. Choose exercises that involve compound, or multi joint movements. These movements target your entire body and use the most energy. Working more muscles at once can save you time and maximise your gains. With the right approach to living a healthy lifestyle and maintaining a fit physique, you’ll be able to burn fat and build muscles which also allows you to burn more calories even at rest. You’ll start to feel mentally and physically better in the process. 


Like any goal you want to achieve, your results are dependent on the quality of effort you put towards it, so be consistent and disciplined within your approach. Let’s look at some of the best exercises for weight loss and muscle definition. Performed by our very own Avvini Athlete, Zara Zolkos (@zarazolkosfit). Zara is one of our Avvini Athletes who strives to help young women transform their bodies through education and flexibility. We love following her fitness journey and commitment to helping other women experience positive growth within themselves.


BARBELL PAUSE SQUAT

The squat is considered one of the most important exercises for any lifter or athlete as it engages the largest muscle in your body - your glutes. One of the best squat variations is the pause squat. Adding a pause to your squat can improve concentric and quad strength, enhance knee strength, improve athletic performance and refine your movements and balance. 


How to perform it:

The pause squat is set up exactly the same as a regular squat, the difference is that you will pause at the bottom range of motion then explode ‘out of the hole’ - the lowest position of a squat. Since you’re adding time to your squats by pausing at the lowest point, you should reduce the reps or weights you use given that you’ll be using more energy exploding out of the hole. 

Girl performing barbell pause squat wearing pink adapt scrunch bum leggings, back


CABLE KICKBACKS

Cable kickbacks are completed using a cable machine that targets and isolates your glute muscles. This exercise also engages your core, hamstrings, calves, quads and lower back. Whilst they may not feel as much of a burn as your glutes do, this exercise will still help tone those areas. Cable kickbacks are extremely effective in shaping and toning your glute muscles and legs - especially your hamstrings. This exercise targets the area where your hamstrings meet the glutes, which helps to create a rounder, fuller booty!


How to perform it:

First you’ll need a cable machine and an ankle cuff, or a pull accessory as Zara uses. Set the cable pulley to the lowest possible setting and attach the accessory to your ankle. Hinge from the waist and bend over so your back is almost parallel to the floor, you can hold onto the machine for extra support. Maintain a micro-bend in your planted leg, engage the abs and contract your glute muscles to lift your other leg back, slow and controlled and as far as possible. Once you’ve reached the top of your motion, squeeze your glutes and slowly lower back to the starting position for the completion of one rep. If you’re completing this exercise with lighter weight, aim for 12-15 reps, if you’re using heavier weights try doing 6-8 reps. 

Girl performing kickbacks using a cable machine wearing pink adapt scrunch bum leggings and white crop top


CABLE RDLs

Cable Romanian Deadlifts are a variation of the standard Romanian Deadlift. RDLs are a great exercise to help grow and build strength in your glutes and hamstrings. Using a cable machine instead of a barbell alternates the angle of the ‘pull’, changing the part of your glutes that do the work when you lift. The exercise also helps improve balance and coordination. 


How to perform it:

Set the cable machine on the lowest setting and attach a pull accessory. Stand feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent and bend forward at the hips, letting the cable resistance slowly pull the hands toward the top of the feet, stopping at roughly knee level. You should feel the burn in your lower back and glutes. Extend from your hips and return to the starting position, making sure to keep your back straight throughout the entire movement. 

Girl performing cable Romanian dead lift


DB SINGLE ARM ROW

This exercise is a good addition to any full body workout. The movements target the upper and lower back, shoulders, biceps and hips while improving core stability. It’s a good exercise for beginners as you can start off light and slowly increase the weights as you build strength. By focusing on one arm at a time, you can better isolate your lats and lift the weight higher than one normally would during a class barbell row. 


How to perform it:

Begin this exercise with feet hip-distance apart, holding a dumbbell in one hand. Take a step back to balance yourself, keeping a soft bend in your front leg, leaning slightly forward. Tighten your core so you have a good base of support. Lower the dumbbell toward the floor until you have fully extended your elbow, ensuring you are maintaining proper posture through your shoulders, hips and lower back. Avoid rounding or arching your spine. Begin the upward motion and bring the dumbbell up to your chest, concentrating on using your back and shoulder muscles rather than your arms and squeeze at the top of the movement. Lower the dumbbell until your arm is fully extended again to complete one rep. 

Girl wearing pink adapt scrunch bum leggings performing dumbbell single arm row


DB SEATED FLOOR SHOULDER PRESS

The dumbbell shoulder press is a movement that can produce significant growth in your shoulders, triceps, and upper chest. There are a huge variety of dumbbell shoulder press variations that you can choose from, all differ by the angles and/or rotations of the wrist/forearms. We can work around shoulder concerns, weaknesses in specific patterns, and muscle imbalances when completing dumbbell shoulder presses. Because being upright requires balance, you also engage muscle in your core and lower back when performing this exercise. 


How to perform it:

Select a pair of dumbbells that aren’t too heavy that could risk injury to your shoulders. You want to pick a weight that almost feels too light for the first couple of reps. Hold the dumbbells by your shoulders with your palms facing forwards and your elbows out to the sides bent at a 90 degree angle. Without leaning back, extend through your elbows and slowly press the weights above your head, thinking about the movement and making a mind to muscle connection. Once the weights are at the top and the movement and your arms are extended, slowly return the dumbbells to the starting position for the completion of one rep. 

Girl performing dumbbell seated floor press wearing pink adapt scrunch bum leggings and white crop top, back


Zara wears our flattering Adapt Scrunch Bum Leggings during her full body workout. Shop our range of crop tops, bras and seamless, scrunch bum and pocket leggings and shorts that you can wear to smash your workouts in.
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