Weight Complexes

Weight lifting is my favorite mode of exercise. Moving moderate to heavy loads that enhance my muscle pump is by far one of the best feelings ever. Lifting heavy tends to take a toll on my body sometimes, because of my lifestyle of a personal training constantly on my feet and moving clients weights. Another issue that many people use as an excuse is the time factor, that I experience as a trainer trying to get my own workout in between training clients. There is a solution that allows you to get as much movement in a workout without sacrificing time. The solution is dumbbell or barbell complexes.

A complex will involve a combination of movements using the same weight to perform a specific rep range of exercises, one after the other. Once you have completed the amount of exercise you designed into the complex a rest period will be taken. Their are full body, upper body, and lower body complexes that can be used. Depending on your goal will usually dictate how may reps you should use for your complex. If your goal is muscular hypertrophy, muscular endurance, and strength. Even if you aren’t doing the specific muscular endurance rep range goal, you can still improve your endurance by performing the back to back exercises without rest until the end. Complexes allow you to get your weight training in, and move your cardiovascular health. Complexes can be used with light weight as a warm up before your heavy lifting, and it can be used at the end with light weight to serve as a finisher/cool down. Below list the text book reps for the given goal.


1) Muscular hypertrophy- 8-12 reps
2) Muscular endurance 10-16 reps
3) Strength- 2-6 reps

Examples of complexes
Lower body with dumbbells Hypertrophy Suitcase deadlift x12
RDL x10
DB front squat x8
Reverse lunges x 8 each
Rest 1:30-2:00

Upper body hypertrophy Overhead press x10 Upright row x8
DB curls x8

DB bent over row x12
DB grip push ups x 10-12 Rest 1:30

Full body
Alternating overhead press x8 each
Alternating lateral lunges
Db hinge and high pull x8-10
Alternating forward lunges x 8 each
DB alternating bent over row x 10-12 each side

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