Welcome to August!! We start fresh with a brand new challenge – putting emphasis on weight training this month!! If you are stuck in a rut with your current routine or are feeling like you are in a place of plateau as far as results are concerned, it might be a good idea for you to add some weight training into the mix and make a commitment to honing in on your diet this month. The majority of these workouts can be done from home for those of you who don’t have access to a gym – if there is gym equipment needed and you don’t have access, don’t sweat it, just substitute a different exercise that targets the same muscle group using what you have available to you.
For those of you interested in lifting heavier or who have asked me for lifting workouts for specific muscle groups, I decided to put together a MONTH’s worth of workouts to show you how I lift at the gym. Keep in mind, I do not do the same routine every week. I like to try new things, so the breakdowns I am sharing with you are all routines I have written and used as part of my training. Also, I really like to mix it up, not only in the WAY I workout, but HOW I workout as well. For example, I will lift heavy for a few weeks like this and then I will mix it up for a few weeks with longer full-body HIIT sessions. I really enjoy lifting weights, interval training, yoga, and running, so for me it is important to have variety. No matter what you do, make sure to continue the things that you love!
Another note I would like to make is I really aim to keep my training sessions to an hour or less, slightly longer on occasion. I have found that my energy levels often peak around the 30-45 minute mark. Duration does not always equal more results, you can maximize your results in a short amount of time, so keep in mind that over-training can be counterproductive to your goals. Listen to your body!
Finally, I really want you to push it with the weights, at your level. Don’t be afraid of getting bulky – challenge yourself. If you are just starting out, I strongly encourage you to take a few practice sets to know how much weight you can handle. Don’t start too heavy, but don’t start too light either. You want a weight that will push you to the end of the set – as many fitness professionals say, to failure. Pay attention to your form – form over speed. Safety is important – if you are unfamiliar with a move or form, make sure you do some research prior to attempting it and risking an injury.
**Two weeks down, two weeks to go?! Are you noticing any changes this month?? I am noticing some improvements both in strength and endurance – last week’s bodyweight cardio day pushed me on whole new level, and I am still waddling from the effects of Day 11 – Legs. It is safe to say that workouts on paper can surely surprise and humble you!!
As we move into the last two weeks, I really want you to focus on your diet – what you are fueling your body with makes a huge difference when it comes to sustained energy and fitness goals. Make sure you are not only eating enough calories, but also consuming calories from nutritionally rich sources as well. Try to hold yourself accountable to making one diet change for the last two weeks – maybe you cut out refined sugar, alcohol, or white flour, maybe you commit to making one green smoothie a day for the last two weeks, maybe you choose not to eat any of your meals out, maybe you aim to drink a gallon of water a day – whatever it is, commit to that one thing. write it down, share it, and stick to it for two weeks!! Let’s go team – we’ve got this!!!
Circuit 1 : Repeat 3x
20 Weighted Squats – use a moderate weight, I used the Smith Machine with 115 lbs.
10 Side Lunges L, 10 Side Lunges R – I used a 45 lb. barbell
REST 45-60 seconds
Circuit 2 : Repeat 3x
8 Single Leg Extension L, 8 Single Leg Extension R, 8 Double Leg Extension – (Set at 50 lbs throughout)
16 Reps Squat & Press – I held a 25 lb. plate
REST 45-60 seconds
Circuit 3 : Repeat 3x
10 Narrow Leg Press (Narrow foot placement), 10 Wide Leg Press (Wider foot placement) – (I used 200 lbs. throughout)
20 Calf Raises – I held a 25 lb. plate
REST 45-60 seconds
Circuit 4 : AMRAP (As many rounds as possible) – Set a timer for 10 minutes and complete the following circuit continuously until time runs out.
10 Backward Stepping Lunges – L/R (Alternating)
10 Forward Stepping Lunges – L/R (Alternating)
20 Step Up Knee Drive (10 each side)
15 Wide Leg Squats
Circuit 5 : AMRAP (As many rounds as possible) – Set a timer for 10 minutes and complete the following circuit continuously until time runs out.
90 seconds jumping rope/skipping
20 Jumping Lunges
15 Knee Drives – L (Keeping L foot planted on step, drive R knee up)
15 Knee Drives – R (Keeping R foot planted on step, drive L knee up)
15 Bodyweight Squats or Jump Squats