If you hadn't seen, jack of all trades Caroline Flack is currently starring in Chicago The Musical.
She's playing leading lady Roxie Hart in the West End hit, but that hasn't stopped her training at her favourite gym, Roar Fitness, with PT and former Olympic athlete, Sarah Lindsay.
Here at WH, we thought it only right that we get someone to try her exact workout. Keep reading to discover how one contributor got on.
> View this post on Instagram
A post shared by Caroline (@carolineflack) on
I tried Caroline Flack's workout for 2 weeks: results in
Weight training is something I’ve always wanted to get more into, so, inspired by Flack’s lean physique – and with a couple of weeks to go before a holiday to Crete – I decided to try out her exercise regime myself: a full body strength training workout.
I’d be taking on four sessions a week for two weeks. No big deal.
I usually work out around four times a week on a good week (it fluctuates, I’m only human) but mix it up a lot, doing a combination of cardio, yoga and strength training. So, although I wasn’t totally new to the weights section of the gym, I hadn’t tried a lot of the moves before.
I also don’t tend to spend a full gym session doing just weights. Often it’ll just be 10 minutes after a treadmill run and will feature a few squats, lunges, and ab exercises. Turns out, Flack’s workout is quite different.
It focuses a lot on arm exercises (although most are full body moves), which I rarely do, and in total lasts for around 50 minutes.
So, here’s what happened when I switched up my routine and tried something out of my comfort zone…
1. Single arm row - 2 sets of 8-10 reps on each side
2. Dumbbell chest press - 3 sets of 13-15 reps
3. Split squat - 3 sets of 10-12 reps on each side
4. Seated shoulder press - 3 sets of 13-15 reps
5. Hip thrusts - 3 sets of 15-20 reps
6. Deadlifts - 3 sets of 10-12 reps
7. Step ups - 3 sets of 10-12 reps on each leg
8. Seated bicep curls - 3 sets of 10 reps
9. Lying tricep extensions - 3 sets of 10 reps
10. Seated ball crunch - 3 sets of 15-20 reps
It’s Monday morning and I’m strangely motivated to get to the gym. Having a set plan of what I’ll be doing gives me a sense of purpose.
After a quick warm up, I head to the weights section and gather the equipment I need: a bench, a box, dumbbells, a 20kg barbell, an Olympic bar and swiss ball. Unless you’re lucky enough to have a fully-equipped in-house gym, this is not one you can do at home.
I always find trying out new things in the gym daunting, yet I just about manage all the moves (I think) – bar the hip thrusts, which I can’t seem to navigate. I don’t know if the bench is too high or if I’m too small, but something isn’t working here.
The weight of the barbell is hurting my hips, so I can’t drive them up high enough to get my back parallel (I later learn I should have added one of those helpful foam pads - you know, the ones that look a bit like a swimming pool float). I find myself wishing I had my own PT, and after a number of failed attempts I give up. I’ll try again tomorrow.Related Story > Is Strength Training Alone Enough For Fat Loss?
The workout leaves me feeling exhausted – in a different way to usual. Parts of me that never usually ache after the gym are hurting, so it’s clearly working muscle groups I’ve been ignoring.
After four sessions across five days, the DOMS has kicked in badly and my body feels heavy. Doing the same thing each day has got a little repetitive too, so I’m ready for a break over the weekend.
Come week two, however, I feel myself enjoying the workout much more. The post-lifting endorphins (the way these chemicals react in the brain is similar to the effects of morphine) really boost my mood, and it’s motivating to feel like I’m getting stronger each session. I see how this could get addictive.
I still find the shoulder presses a big struggle. Perhaps my forearms and traps need some work. The step ups can feel never-ending at times (there’s over 70 to get through) - but my improved ability means they no longer fill me with dread.
I notice my appetite has increased, but I’m inspired to emulate Flack’s healthy diet as well as her gym routine. Speaking about her weight loss last year – in which she shed a stone in three months – Flack said the most important dietary change she made was cutting out sugar.
I don’t cut it out completely but make a conscious effort to reduce my sugar intake, which makes me feel more energised. Flack also has big breakfasts of scrambled eggs and avocado, so I do the same, upping my protein to fuel my sessions.
The weights section of the gym can be a scary place, particularly at peak times when it’s filled with groaning ‘muscle men’ lifting ten times what you are. But as the two weeks comes to an end, I notice how much more confident I feel there.Related Story > Verdict In: Whether Cardio Actually Burns Muscle
I’ve even made a couple of new gym friends, one a female trainer who helps me improve my deadlift form – keep your chest up and your back flat – and, on my penultimate session, shows me the correct way to do hip thrusts.
Remember to engage your glutes and drive your shoulders into the bench. Raise your hips off the floor until your back is parallel, and lower.
Like a lot of women, I’ve always been a bit worried lifting weights would make me look bulky. It hasn’t been long, but so far that has certainly not been the case, and I’m really happy with the results I’ve seen.
My muscles are already noticeably more defined, especially my arms, and abs. This introduction to weight-lifting has shown me endless crunches aren’t always the best way to a flat stomach.Related Story > Caroline Flack's PT On When To Skip The Gym
Not only have I lost three pounds, friends comment on how toned I look, and when holiday shopping I fit into a size smaller skirt than usual.
I’ve also found the mental effects a huge pro. Of course a sweaty spin class is a good way to let off some steam, but I was surprised to find the slow, methodical element of lifting weights a great stress reliever. Just two weeks in, I’m a convert.
Source : https://www.womenshealthmag.com/uk/fitness/workouts/a706927/caroline-flack-workout-review/