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With the recent announcement of commercial gym closures as of 12.00pm Monday, March 23, 2020, the Australian gym community has been left wondering ‘what now?’. For many of us training is a fundamental part of our daily routine, not only for our physical health but our mental health too.

It is important to understand maintaining our muscle tissue doesn't require the same amount of intensity and volume that it took to build, so before we start to panic and think that all our precious ‘gains’ will be lost. We just need to go back to the drawing board. It’s time to get creative, and adapt our lifestyles to still abide by the recent lockdowns, but also to provide enough stimulation, both physical and mental, to help us stay ‘in shape’ and sane during this pandemic we face.

Some of you may be wondering about how our Gen-Tec Nutrition pro athletes are dealing with the gym closures. Others of you are asking them what they are doing for their own workout routines. So we thought we’d pose this question to our athletes to see how they’re coping with the new regulations surrounding COVID-19. We asked Australian and World Champion Ben Wortley how he plans to stay in shape during ‘Gymageddon’. Here’s what he had to say.

“Many of us (myself included) don't actually own any home gym equipment, so it is important to think outside the box as to what CAN be used, rather than what we can’t use.

Unfortunately it has made me realise how much I take the gym for granted, and how much choice there really is. But it is true, training does not need to be overly complicated, and by perfecting the ‘fundamental’ movements, we can still get, and maintain, results.

What are these fundamental movements?

Squatting, dead-lifting, pushing, pulling and some rotational work for the torso (assuming we are injury free, and our bodies allow us to do such movements)

Ben Wortley's Person Training Plan

My personal plan from here is to keep physically active on a daily basis, so trying to hit 10,000 steps daily, and include some resistance based training to help maintain what I have spent so long trying to build.

I will be getting a barbell with some plates to perform my main compound movements such as bench pressing, shoulder pressing, barbell rowing, dead lifting, squatting and lunging, and also a couple of pairs of dumbbells to focus on some isolation work, including side raises/rear raises, tricep overhead extensions and skull crushers, and of course, some ESSENTIAL bicep curls (Never skip arm day - LOL).

Given that my equipment will be limited, I will focus more so on increasing the frequency in which I train each muscle group, and in turn, increasing the volume per muscle group over a 7-day basis (as the % of 1RM lifted will be reduced due to a lack in weight plates and dumbbells). By increasing frequency and volume per muscle group, you can still ‘progressively overload’ the muscle group, which is ultimately the key to progression and muscle development in resistance training.

On top of my weight training, I will be incorporating some general hiking and outdoor cycling (while I can) to mix up my scenery as we are now becoming more and more limited with outdoor exposure as the lockdown regulations get tighter. I have always found I get a great endorphin hit from outdoor activities, so I will be using this more for it’s refreshing mood boosting properties than to ‘improve’ my fitness as such, which will just be a beneficial byproduct of the training.

All in all, the goal is to KEEP moving, which is ultimately what we, as humans, are supposed to do. So don’t let this virus stand in the way of your 2020 physical goals, it is a speed hump, not a stop sign to your progress, it will just require a little more adaptation and creativity.And of course, can’t forget keeping up with the Gen-Tec Nutrition supplements.

Ben Wortley
Ben Wortley

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