I decided to get a TRX suspension trainer because it appeared to be a nice and portable way to use body weight for strength development. I am guilty of dropping strength workouts in favour of my swim, bike, run training. As a result, my upper body strength is really not anywhere near where I want it to be and my quads are getting too developed while my hamstrings aren’t. I really don’t want to end up with muscle imbalances that cause me to get injured more easily. I need to be able to stay on my aero bars a lot more than I do now. I also need to develop more strength to improve my swimming pull. Sports aside, more core strength is always good for just about anything you’d want to do, other than lying down.
(At this point, I should probably mention that I had rotator cuff problems for over a year. Those problems have now been resolved, but I have very weak shoulders because I was unable to do shoulder exercises while my rotator cuff was screwed up.)
I did one set of the TRX endurance circuit on Monday just to get the hang of things without getting too sore in the process. But today, I did the TRX Basic Training workout that comes on the DVD you get with the system. Everything went well, but the oblique crunch and plank were quite difficult. As usual, my weak shoulders started burning well before my abs did. This is the same problem I had doing mountain climbers or push-ups. Given time, I expect that will change.
I really like the fact that you can adjust the difficulty of any exercise on the fly. There are no weights to add or remove, no bands to attach or detach. You simply use the position of your body, or add something on to the movement to modify difficulty. For example, if you find the squat too easy, you can add a jump at the end. If the hamstring curl is too easy when you are lying on your back, raise your hips.
The only thing I wasn’t too fond of is the cost. The TRX cost $189 for the Pro version. This seems to be a bit steep, but I bought it anyway since it’s very portable. In any case, stay tuned to see how I do!