Workout better and easier for $6.86

Yes you read that right. $6.86.

Would you even consider believing me if I told you that for under $10, you could have a way to guarantee a better quality of workout?

Too good to be true?

Not at all. I’ve been reaping the rewards for a couple of weeks now.

If you have worked on the Occam’s Protocol program, the Geek to Freak program, or indeed if you are following the Myotatic Crunches and Cat Vomit exercises, you will be familiar with a common element.


More specifically, Time under Tension. It’s actually the secret behind why all of these work so well. But that science is for another article. Today, we’re talking about working out better. Cheap!

I have noticed one thing with all these various workouts. If you don’t track the time, there are so many other variables that get added in, you might as well not think that you are doing a 4 Hour Body workout.

Put simply, getting that optimum time is the critical part of these activities.

For this reason, it’s time that I targeted when I went looking for a way to make these workouts easier. I had been counting, until a trainer told me his count actually was very different to my own (and I was overlifting by a few seconds each rep), and so I went to use a stop watch, and then to using a stop watch on a smartphone.

All-in, I was pretty happy with the stop watch on the smartphone. Except for those few lifts where there was no good place to put it.

I got frustrated, as I knew my efforts were focussed enough on getting the correct cadence – I had no way of gauging seconds on a clock while I was lying doing a bench press.

So let me introduce to you, the solution.

In these days of overproduction of just about everything, it’s easy to find just about anything on eBay for around $4. This stands true for the device that will easily clip on your sleeve, or shorts at the gym, and keep you lifting at perfect cadence from now and forever.

I’m sure there’s some gym company out there with a fancy version of this, but to my mind, for what I’m doing right now, this works great.

tomtoptuner Workout better and easier for $6.86

It’s a guitar metronome. It can tune your guitar, so you’ll never be off tune again, but the valuable feature for you and I is it’s metronome. Click here to check it out on eBay. (No, I don’t get a commission on this).

Configure this baby to 60 Beats Per Minute, and you have a click sound once per second. This one even has two volume levels.

Better yet, for all the lifts that need a 5/5 cadence, set this up for 5 beats in a bar, and you get a different beep, and light flash, at the end of each 5 second period.

Let me tell you that with no shadow of a doubt am I certain that this device has improved my weight lifting, as I can now focus on the lifting ,and a simply count of the number of reps, rather than counting out seconds, and it keeps my lifts accurate from one workout to the next.

If you don’t already have something like this, I would suggest picking one up today, it has changed the way I workout.

PS I don’t know the guy in China, but I wish him all the best when he gets crushed with orders for this thing from 4HB followers!

Great image by Guitargoa

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11 Responses to Workout better and easier for $6.86

  • Justin says:

    Hey Luke,

    Wonder if you read Chad Waterbury’s stuff at all. He is a neurophysiologist/trainer that has an opposite view of time under tension.

    Personally I like to mix it up and lift slow/fast as well as heavy/light.

    • Luke says:

      Hey Justin, very interesting stuff, thanks for your comment.

      I found that article really great, and definitely challenges some of the other information around. Especially the lactate to growth hormone idea.. he didn’t mention exactly how people were getting bigger if they had less lactate, but they were. I wonder if this is the secret reason that I just had to add Kettlebells to the Geek to Freak routine, and why lately I’ve been craving some quick knee raises at the gym? All the slow stuff is great, but there’s also something really challenging to your whole body about doing something all-out – almost on the point of being out of control.

      Really enjoyed a few of your posts on your blog, great reading. Are you still doing intermittent fasting? I’ve read a lot of lean gains articles on Martin’s site, and I found myself left thinking I’d need to do a lot of calorie counting, which put me off a little (still planning on using the protocol though). How do you find it?


  • Hi Luke,

    As an alternative to buy a metronome on ebay, you can install a metronome directly from the Apple store or any other Smartphone store, you can even install them for free


  • Luke,

    Thank you for the reminder about Time under Tension and going “cheap”. I went the really cheap route and loaded a “free” Metronome App onto my iPhone. The Ludwig App has a feature to flash and ring the timing. I look forward to taking it for a test drive on my next workout. I let you know how it performs.


    • Luke says:

      Hey Matt, thanks for your comment! Great idea with using a free App on an iPhone/iPod.. that’s definitely a great option. With an armband, this would be ideal for anyone that has one of these Apple products.

      All the best with your workouts!

  • Pingback: 7 Lessons: Geek to Freak progress and results

  • Harry, Athens-Greece says:

    I did something similar a couple of years ago when I started training using BobyByScience protocols by Doug McGuff (from whom Tim got the minimum effective dose -M.E.D.- idea) & John Little, since they use TUT/TUL. I downloaded an mp3 metronome track (60bpm) from a music site, then mixed my voice over the beat track with a 5sec countdown, followed by me counting every 5secs. I make a 3min track and since then I take my mp3 player with me when I train and press play before each set, and follow the track “5, 4, 3, 2, 1, go, . . . . , 5, . . . ., 10, …” and so on, so when I reach failure I know exactly my TUT.

    • Luke says:

      Hi Harry, thanks for sharing your experiences with us, all the way from Athens!! Great to have you reading.

      Time Under Tension is definitely gaining a lot of attention these days, but I know it’s not new. A good friend of mine likewise has been into it for years, and finds amazing results across a broad range of subjects he trains.

      Your solution to the metronome track is brilliant! I really like this idea. Thanks for sharing it.

      All the best,

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