• Jon Reid

5 Lessons I Learned from a Garage Workout in San Diego


Jon and Ron

Whilst on holiday in California I was put through my paces by a man twice my senior. Trying to keep up with this man-machine led me to the edge of the puke zone. Fortunately I didn’t enter the puke zone, but I came mighty close. After a couple of circuit training workouts with Ron Coscuna I learned some valuable lessons…


Don’t be Late for Dinner

Sweat soaked t-shirt, gasping for air… ‘Holy… smokes…. your Dad…. is in…. great shape… I think…. I’m gonna… puke’ was met with ‘You better be ready to leave in 10 minutes.’


Lesson Learned: When your lady has made dinner plans, be on time.


All Tanks Need Gas (Or Electricity if you’re a Leaf Driver)

The circuit laid out by Ron featured six exercises, but only a couple of these involved moderately heavy weights. The remaining four exercises were either bodyweight movements or used very light weights.


I wasn’t so naive to think the session would therefore be a breeze, but I had been doing a lot of strength training recently, so it was all good…


A couple of minutes in to the circuit and my strength had been sapped, my breathing was louder than the music and thirty seconds felt like thirty minutes… there was no electricity left in my leaf.


Lesson Learned: Regardless of training goal, neglecting cardiovascular conditioning is an error.


Don’t Knock It Before You Try It

One of the exercises in Ron’s circuit was a sandbag rotational lunge. I’d never done this before and it’s the type of exercise that might raise the eyebrows of some strength coaches. However, I knew Ron was clued up on strength and conditioning and so I was happy to follow his lead.


It was only on the plane home when I was thinking about the workout (long plane ride) that I realised the complexity of this exercise and how many athletic qualities it trains…

Sandbag rotational lunges involve:

  • Stability

  • Rotation

  • Unilateral loading (loading one side of the body)

  • Movement in multiple planes of motion (forward, backwards, side to side, rotation)

  • Force absorption

  • Deceleration

Plus, they can be performed with light, moderate or heavy sandbags… pretty good for one exercise.


Lesson Learned: Ron Knows Best


Tyre Flips are Awesome

Flipping a tyre up and down a quiet neighbourhood street might not be everyone’s idea of a fun thing to do on holiday, but it was one of my many highlights! I’ve never felt my legs and forearms as much as I did after flipping that flippin’ tyre.


Flippin' tiring

Tyre flips challenge your strength and lungs, are fun to do and I highly recommend giving them a go. If your gym doesn’t have tyres then contact your local tractor dealer.


Lesson Learned: Flip tyres away from parked cars.


You Can’t Beat Circuit Training

I hadn’t done a traditional circuit style session in a long time before Ron dragged me through this one. Circuit training has been around since the dawn of time and is still used today as a quick way to burn fat and build muscle.


The Mecca of Training

Why is circuit training so good? Well, because circuits:

  • Elevate the heart rate

  • Stimulate muscles

  • Are physically and mentally challenging

  • Allow for a huge amount of exercise variety

  • Are scalable for beginners and advanced exercisers

  • Can train the whole body (in multiple planes of motion)

  • Are time efficient, and

  • Challenge multiple energy systems

Lesson Learned: Do more circuit training.


Big thanks to Ron for the training sessions over the last couple of weeks, so much fun and I learned a lot!

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