Power Hour: The mother of all circuit sessions

A while back I started a circuit training session at the local gym called Power Hour. It’s fairly simplistic with a emphasis on hard work and old school toughness rather than being too technically perfect. Basically it’s a Rocky style training montage made flesh.

It’s unbelievably hard. During my first few sessions I thought covering my fellow classmates in a mutli-coloured vomit shower was an inevitability. My face looked totally grey and my eyes looked dead – very similar to when I’ve seen people collapsed on the side of the road during triathlons. After several weeks I started to cope with it.

Power Hour


The class is led by Elvio a sadistic mad man who adds on extra time on the particularly difficult exercises (for the whole class) if anyone does anything which slightly annoys him. His catchphrase is “You’ll thank me for this one day” which he delivers slightly before one of his brutal and unjustified punishments. He reminds me of exercise tyrant Harvey (above) from Celebrity Fit Club.

The hour long session starts with a 5 minute warm up which consists of: jogging on the spot, press ups, lunges, star jumps, squats and some stretching. Then…

1 minute of step overs
Divide into pairs 40 sit ups each

1 minute Spin bikes  – low resistance, high rpm
15 squat jumps
30 seconds fast sprint with your hands behind your back and your heels kicking high to touch your hands

1 minute Lunges with weights
Divide into pairs 60 sit ups each

1 minute tricep dips
15 burpees (I really hate these more than anything)

1 minute Spin bikes – high resistance with press ups on the handlebars
Divide into pairs 60 sit ups each

1 minute Squats/shoulder presses with dumbbells for 1 minute
15 burpees

1 minute bunny hops
15 squat jumps
30 seconds fast sprint with high heel kicks
press ups

1 minute Spin bikes – high resistance with press ups on the handlebars
15 burpees

1 minute press ups.

Then the “warm down” starts with some sort of savage abdominal exercise which normally involves lying on your back and having your abdominal muscles vibrate like a scene from one of the Alien films. To finish things off Elvio always likes everyone to do a plank for minimum of 1 minute which sounds fine but by that point your abs are shot so seconds feel like years.

That’s gives you a rough idea of how one of these hour long sessions work out. Give it a go yourself if you’re feeling brave or let me know if you know of a similar class.

James Mullarkey

I write about the web and digital, mediocre sporting performances and places I've been, for this blog and only this blog.