Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Workout of the Day: Less is More

What a crazy week. Got back from the Dominican Republic (going through customs sucks!) then hit premieres on back to back nights. While in the DR, kept up my workouts by swimming in the ocean (calm one day, choppy and seaweedy the next, always salty) and hitting the weights at the spa/fitness center. I opted for more or less giant sets to work several body parts so Chins, Goblet Squats, Deadlifts, Lunges and Push Ups anchored the sessions while a few bicep curls, triceps extensions and shoulder raises helped round it out.  After pushing it in March and April, it was time for a break. Guys like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Vince Gironda used to advocate training hard for three weeks then backing off for one. That would give muscles and injuries time to recover as well as provide a mental break. Thinking about working out and eating can get tedious so focusing on other aspects of your life is always a good idea. After five days of relaxing and eating anything I wanted to, I'm back on the hunt, this time with a progression plan and everything.

Taking a page out of Vince, Cro Cop and Daniel Craig's circuit book, I just started a new program that starts and ends the week with full body workouts with upper and lower body sessions in between.

Day One: Clean & Press/Knee Up/Step Up/Chins/Incline Push Up/Dip
Six exercises completed in rapid succession for three circuits. With no extraneous forearm, neck, calf or cardio, it only took me 25 minutes or so to complete. I will implement a second workout on days where time affords to clean up with some cardio like shadowboxing, ab-aerobics, jump roping and swimming.

Day Two: Incline Dumbbell Press/Chins/Incline Push Up/Barbell Row/Incline DB Fly
I generally don't advocate working upper body two days in a row due to the stress it can put on your shoulders and elbows. My shoulders and back are a little sore already from working them in similar ways two days straight but the decrease in volume and shortness of workouts should prevail. Remember, if it hurts, stop. Here I'm only doing 15 total sets whereas my last program had me doing at least 12 per body part for 24 to 36 a session. Now I can cut that down significantly and see how I feel.

Day Three: Squat/Leg Curl/Deadlift/Lunge/Calf Raise
Pretty straightforward leg day to get them quates, glutes, lower back and calves in shape.

Day Four: Incline DB Curl/Bench Dip/Preacher Curl/Triceps Extension/Shoulder Raises
With chins, push ups, presses and dips part of the program foundation; your biceps, triceps and shoulders are already getting some solid attention. Throwing in curls, extensions and raises will help target them specifically for shape, size and definition.

Day Five: Total Body Circuit a la Day One.

Technically this leaves you the weekend to kick back but I'll be throwing in some swimming and cardio to work on the ol' summer shred. My plan is to use this program for six weeks, progressing every two weeks by adding another set. So two weeks at three circuits/sets then two at four and two at five to take me into Comic-Con. Food wise I'm working on eating three solid meals and two snacks a day. So say eggs and oatmeal for breakfast, meat and veggies at lunch, maybe a little brown rice then meat and salad for dinner. Snack wise looking at a protein shake and something like almonds or cheese with fruit for a fat and protein hit.

We'll see what happens! Until then, keep pushing!

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