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Pure Testosterone #3: The Spartacus Workout

Not my abs
by Cosmo Lee

Want those abs? To have them, that is (not to hold them)? Then try The Spartacus Workout. Spartacus is a Roman gladiator TV series that premiered on Starz last Friday. The Spartacus Workout is inspired by the workout routine of the series’ male lead, Andy Whitfield (pictured above). The workout is online here, and in print in the February ’10 issue of Men’s Health, which is on newsstands until February 9. If you do this workout, I recommend getting the magazine, as it contains the workout in a handy poster.

I’ve been looking for something like The Spartacus Workout for a while. Until I discovered it, I was doing a one-body-part-a-day weight training routine. This is standard practice, and it works. But it can take a long time — e.g., doing separate exercises for all three tricep heads — and it’s not terribly practical. Bicep curls, for example, are really only good for headlocks and drinking beer.

The Spartacus Workout addresses these problems. It centers around two concepts: compound exercises and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Compound exercises hit multiple muscles at once. They are better training than isolation exercises (which hit only one muscle, e.g., bicep curls) for sports and daily life. HIIT is short, intense bursts of activity, as opposed to long, steady-state exercise (e.g., slogging it out on a treadmill). It has been demonstrated to be superior in boosting fat loss, strength, and endurance.

You may be wondering how metal ties into this. It has to do with the workout’s structure. The workout consists of doing 10 exercises for a minute each, with 15-second breaks between them, and a two-minute break after the last one. You do these 10 exercises three times. The workout takes about 45 minutes to complete.

I didn’t want to use some boring timer to count time, so I made a little mixtape to do that. It has 10 one-minute songs. Naturally, most are grindcore. For the 15-second and two-minute breaks, I put a synthesized female voice (she happens to have an Indian accent) to count down time over hip-hop beats from Cypress Hill and Da Lench Mob. The tape works perfectly for the workout. Just put it on repeat, and you’re good to go. Here’s the download link and track list.

DOWNLOAD: The Spartacus Workout [32.57MB .zip]

1. Impending Doom – When Waters Run Deep
2. (15s rest)
3. Crowpath – Pigeonsmasher
4. (15s rest)
5. Trap Them – Day Twenty Nine
6. (15s rest)
7. Nasum – När dagarna…
8. (15s rest)
9. Abscess – Street Trash
10. (15s rest)
11. Repulsion – Pestilent Decay
12. (15s rest)
13. Maruta – Man Versus Gravity
14. (15s rest)
15. Defeatist – Maruta
16. (15s rest)
17. Antigama – Orange Pills
18. (15s rest)
19. Mumakil – XIX
20. (2m rest)

A brutal workout requires a brutal soundtrack. And this may be the most brutal workout you’ll ever do. I’ve been doing it for over a week. Each time it has left me drenched in sweat, gasping for breath, and borderline nauseous — and I’m fitter than most. This workout comes from a men’s magazine, but I see no reason why women couldn’t do it (other than, say, pregnancy). The only equipment you’ll need is a light pair of dumbbells. Evidently the average man will burn 730 calories (give or take 130) by doing this workout. You’ll also burn calories afterwards, as it will jack up your metabolism something fierce. Download this mixtape, get to work, and tell me how it goes.

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