This Strength and Pilates Workout Proves ‘Low and Slow’ Is Good Advice for the Mat, Not Just the Kitchen

Some say the perfect scrambled eggs come from cooking those huevos low and slow, meaning on a low heat for a longer amount of time. But taking your time and moving with intention is also a recipe for building strength in a Pilates workout.

“In order to build strong, but dense and defined muscle, you have to make sure you keep constant tension while you’re working it,” Sebastien Lagree, CEO and founder of Lagree Fitnesspreviously told Well+Good. Put another way, going slowly is all about increasing “time under tension,” or the duration that your muscles are actually working.

Experts In This Article
  • Sebastien Lagree, founder of Lagree Fitness and creator of the Megaformer and Microformer workout.
  • Tatiana Lampa, corrective exercise specialist

If you move too quickly, you could be relying on momentum, which takes the pressure off the muscle fibers you’re trying to build.

Lagree’s advice pertains to both Lagree done on the megaformer and Pilates done on the mat. In this new 22-minute Pilates and strength workout from Training with T coach Tatiana Lampa, you’ll take your time throughout the full-body routine. Work with intention while doing moves like lowering down in a glute bridge, and maintain your control while you’re sliding your legs in and out on planks and lunges done with the assistance of gliders (or socks if you don’t have gliders on hand).

Prepare yourself for a core blaster right off the bat with dead bugs, hollow body/teaser moves, and planks. Standing poses, like single leg dead lifts with rows, will give you “a lot of bang for your buck,” as Lampa puts it, because you’ll be working your whole body.

It’s all in service of building that resilient muscle that will make you stronger in the long run.

“The beauty about strength and Pilates is that we’re working under time under tension,” Lampa says. “We’re recruiting slow-twitch muscle fibers, which are great to incorporate into your workout routine.”

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