Since its invention in 1979, the Bowflex home gym has offered a different approach to weight training. Rather than using traditional barbells and weight plates, the Bowflex PR1000 allows you to clip exercise attachments to pliable rods, copyrighted as "power rods." More than 30 exercises are possible on the Bowflex PR1000 using its exercise attachments, and you can combine these exercises several different ways for a total body workout that suits your fitness goals.
Twenty-Minute Better Body
The 20-minute better body workout is often promoted on Bowflex infomercials as a quick and easy way to get a better body. During the routine, you perform the bench press, seated lat rows, crossover seated rows, biceps curls, triceps push-downs, calf raises, leg presses, resisted trunk rotation and seated abdominal curls. Select a weight that allows you to perform 10 to 15 repetitions before muscle failure, and perform one set of each exercise with minimal rest between sets.
Advanced General Conditioning
You can use the advanced general conditioning workout with the Bowflex PR1000 after you have developed a base level of strength with the 20-minute better body routine. It is similar to the basic routine in that you perform a total body workout using 10 to 12 repetitions per exercise. The main difference is that you only use six or seven exercises per session. Bowflex recommends using a "split system," where you train different muscle groups on different days. Therefore, you may work your chest, shoulders and arms on the first and third workouts of the week, while training your back, trunk and legs on the second workout of the week.
Aerobic Circuit Training
If your main goal is weight loss with the Bowflex PR1000, the company recommends the true aerobic circuit training program. To perform this workout, you execute a single set of bench presses, leg presses, seated rows, calf raises and seated abdominal crunches for eight to 12 repetitions. However, instead of resting between each exercise, you perform 30 to 60 seconds of an aerobic exercise, such as jogging in place or stair climbing. You can complete the entire circuit as many times as you want in 20 to 60 minutes per workout session.
Though the Bowflex PR1000 only offers a maximum of 210 lbs. in resistance through the power rods, you can still get a solid strength training workout with the home gym. The company recommends a three-day split in which you work your chest and shoulders on Monday, your back and arms on Wednesday and your legs and torso on Friday. During each workout, you select two to four exercises per muscle group, such as the seated lat row and stiff arm pull-downs when you work your back. Perform each exercise for two to four sets during the workout, with each set containing five to eight repetitions.