Power workout tools

To melt away stubborn fat, you need to put some wattage behind your workouts and rethink the tools you use most. Performing tire flips, for example, or digging deep with sled pushes once or twice a week will surely fire up deep-set fat cells and unveil lean muscle. Trainer Dan Wells, a functional fitness expert and CrossFit Games competitor with CrossFit Horsepower, has essential exercises and tips for successfully tackling the tire, rope, and sled to shred your body beautifully once and for all.

Training with a tire will reach those fast-twitch muscle fibers; plus you’ll always get your heart rate elevated if you’re pushing it or jumping over it. The harder you’re working those large muscle groups, like your legs, the more oxygen your body consumes, which simply means a bigger afterburn to make you leaner tomorrow than you are today.

Form & Function
Look for a tire that is about two-feet thick (150 to 225 pounds). Stand with feet wide, hands inside knees, pressing shoulders into tire. Squat and drive tire forward using legs only. Extend hips and pop a knee up before pressing forward with your arms.

Prep Move
Practice the barbell clean, and press from the floor before attempting.

3 rounds for time:
5 tire flips
5 jump spreads (from inside tire center, jump feet out to sides on top)
5 decline pushups (feet on tire).

Climbing a rope will help develop well-proportioned upper-body muscles that look great in a tank top. But this isn’t the same as your gym-class drill. Integrate rope climbing into your typical training regimen to improve grip strength, obliques (core), and stabilizer muscles that will help you with other lifts. For climbing rope, keep your shins covered with long socks. Pro tip: Save your arms from burnout by using your legs.

Form & Function
Jump up to grab high onto rope. It’s easiest to wrap one leg around it, lift toe, and raise knee as high as possible before standing on rope between feet as a clamp. Once secure, stand up and walk arms higher on rope. Repeat to the top!

Prep Move
Pull up with arms from sitting on the floor, or practice a jump catch and hold. For a challenge, wear a weighted vest.

5 rounds for time:
1 rope climb (20 feet)
10 burpees

This is the ultimate drill for leg power, strength, and conditioning. If your gym doesn’t have one, stack and wrap weights on a towel in a studio and push across the slick floor.

Form & Function Keep hips low and spine neutral, not arched. Keep your feet straight (not angled out like a duck). Drive forward at full speed.

Start with an empty sled and add weight as necessary to make it even more of a muscle builder.

Alternate sled pushes with a partner for 5 minutes. Optimal distance: For fat burning, do 25 yards with an empty sled; to build muscle, stack on weight and limit to 10 yards. Rest while partner pushes.

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