Barbell Complex Challenge Workout

Barbell and dumbell complexes were a big part of my training routine in my pro football days.

I have gotten away from them over the last few years, but a fitness expert friend of mine (Shawna Kaminski – you remember her, right?) came out with a new program that has given me a ton of new ideas to use in both my own workouts, and with my boot campers.

Here is a sample barbell complex workout from the Challenge Complex program for you to try:

Choose a weight that you can use for ALL exercises. Try not to put the bar down throughout the set. Rest up to one minute between sets.

6 reps of each:

Bent over row (hinge at the hips, keep that back flat!!)
RDL (stands for Romanian Deadlift – back flat again, drive the butt back and load up those hamstrings)
High pull (same hip hinge motion but make sure to keep the bar close to the body and snap the hips to get it up)
Front squat (elbows up!!)
Push press (hip drive to get that bar off the collar bone – you shouldn’t have to start pressing ’till the bar is past your eyes!)
Burpee with push up (hands on OR off the bar for this one)

Do 4 to 6 rounds total.


A barbell complex like that can be used:

– to replace HIIT with amazing strength building workouts
– to perfect lifting technique while burning fat
– to maintain and improve your strength
– as a stand-alone workout OR to incorporate into your program as “cardio” on your day off

AND another thing I like about the sample complex above – and all of the complexes in Shawna’s program for that matter- is that they do NOT rely on Olympic lifts.

The Olympic lifts are great, but they are relatively hard to learn. And if you try and go at them at a high intensity too quickly, you risk injury.

SO complexes like the one above keep it fairly basic but give you many of the same benefits.

Great stuff.  I hope you liked that sample barbell complex challenge workout.  Try it yourself and let me know how it goes!

Keep training hard, and talk soon –


PS – Learn more about Shawna’s Challenge Complexes program and grab your copy (on sale this week) HERE

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