you ask me, most of the time I’ll say that all training is “metabolic training” since your metabolism is always active, sometimes burning more energy, sometimes
less, and different training stresses your body (metabolism/energy pathways) in different ways. However, a common definition of metabolic training is
“completing structural and compound exercises with little rest in between exercises in an effort to maximize calorie burn and increase metabolic rate during and after the workout.”
How do you do that? Typically by incorporating large muscle groups at high intensity with
little rest. You can use bodyweight, barbells, dumbbells, KBs, sandbags, medicine balls, and/or ropes. I like incorporating the 2” x 50’ rope into some “metabolic” sets at the end of a workout. The 2” rope weighs between 35 – 50 lbs., depending on whether it’s a Poly-blend (lighter) or Manila (heavier), so if you swing that bad boy for a little while,
you know you’ve done something.
A couple options to get you started:
1) Alternating or double waves, a rope end in each hand, other end anchored.
2) Bear crawls while dragging the doubled rope between your legs, forward/backward
3) Vertical Bursts – rope is extended to its’ full length and you try to send a wave to the other end repeatedly. It helps to have the other end anchored with a friend or heavy
4) Slams - using the doubled rope from step 1, focus on slamming the rope down, not on
creating a wave. Coach Nick Tumminello likes these better than Medicine Ball Slams since they require you to drive the rope back up which makes them more efficient for metabolic
training. Check out his article here: Medicine Ball Slams: Why they’re Overrated & 2 Better Exercises
Any of these rope exercises can be combined in a sequence with other implements or exercises to create a metabolic circuit and get you heart rate jumping. I like sequences of 3-5 exercises (more than that and I get confused in the cardio fog about what I’m supposed to do next or which rep/set I’m on), 8-10 reps each, a short rest 30-45 sec after completing all the exercises back to back, then repeated 2-8X. The number of cycles depends on your goal (you do have a goal don’t you?) - is today a light day, heavy day, “rest/active recovery” day? Scale it for what you’re trying to accomplish with your current training.
I know you’re thinking “It’s a rope, how hard can it be?” Give it a try. Then let me know.