Return to fitness… after one year

Had a year-long break from the gym? Rediscover your fitter self

Getting started

We know all too well how life can get. You work, you play and you try to cram as many things into your day as you can. But there’s a regular appointment that you’ve cancelled for the last year. Exercise. It’s likely you only noticed its absence when you raced upstairs to be on time for a work meeting. But perhaps its absence stares at you every time you look at your southbound belly in the mirror. All is not lost because once you’ve been fit, it’s easier to return to form. Clear a slot in your diary because the old you is about to kick the new you back into shape.

Get your muscles back

Do this muscle-building weights routine three times a week, making sure there is at least a day’s rest between each session to give your muscles time to fully recover. You’ll be working every muscle in every workout. Research at the University of Alabama found that men who trained their entire bodies each session, three days a week, gained 10lbs of muscle in just three months. In fact, they packed on four times more muscle and lost twice as much fat as men who worked each muscle group only once a week.

But don’t get over zealous and go slowly to avoid injury. Take three seconds to lower the weight and two seconds to raise it back to the start position. This’ll ensure you’re not endangering your muscles by not jolting or swinging the weight up. It will also keep your muscles under tension long enough to spark growth. Keep your rest periods between each set down to 45 seconds. This will fire up your metabolism, and as well as adding muscle you’ll shed your covering layer of fat. The New Year and the new you starts here.

Week 1

1. Bar-bell squat
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

2. Stiff leg deadlift
Sets 3
Reps 20

3. Dumb-bell bench press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

4. Assisted pull-up machine
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

5. Dumb-bell shoulder press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

6. Lateral raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

7. Barbell biceps curl
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

8. Triceps kickbacks
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

9: Lying leg raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

10. Side Plank     2
60 sec
Reps: 2

Week 2

1. Bar-bell squat
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

2. Stiff leg deadlift
Sets 3
Reps 20

3. Dumb-bell bench press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

4. Assisted pull-up machine
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

5. Dumb-bell shoulder press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

6. Lateral raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

7. Barbell biceps curl
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

8. Triceps kickbacks
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

9: Lying leg raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

10. Side Plank     2
60 sec
Reps: 2

Week 3

1. Bar-bell squat
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

2. Stiff leg deadlift
Sets 3
Reps 20

3. Dumb-bell bench press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

4. Assisted pull-up machine
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

5. Dumb-bell shoulder press
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

6. Lateral raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

7. Barbell biceps curl
Sets: 3
Reps: 20

8. Triceps kickbacks
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

9: Lying leg raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

10. Side Plank     2
80 sec
Reps: 2

Week 4

1. Bar-bell squat
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

2. Stiff leg deadlift
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

3. Dumb-bell bench press
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

4. Assisted pull-up machine
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

5. Dumb-bell shoulder press
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

6. Lateral raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

7. Barbell biceps curl
Sets: 3
Reps: 15

8. Triceps kickbacks
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

9: Lying leg raises
Sets: 3
Reps: 12

10. Side Plank
90 sec
Reps: 2

Get your fitness back

Exhausted yet? You’ve only just begun! Start by doing two to three, 20-minute cardiovascular sessions each week. You can do them on the days when you’re not doing weights or tag them onto the end of your weights workout. If you’re working in the gym spread your efforts across the cross-trainer, stationary bike, treadmill and rowing machine. Do five minutes of intervals on each machine. Work at 30 seconds of high resistance, high effort, then recover for another 30 seconds at low resistance. This will burn more fat and improve your fitness faster than if you worked on one resistance level.

Words by MH Fitness editor-at-large Ray Klerck

From http://www.menshealth.co.uk/

About FitFreek202

Hi, thanks for stopping by at my website. This is my journey to achieve 202 pounds of lean body mass and 15% Body Fat. Let me explain. Weighing yourself with traditional scales is very important, but you also need to measure your body fat as well. You could go to the gym and weigh yourself before and after a long run. The second weigh in, you may well have lost two pounds – that is water from sweat, not body fat. So, my goal is to be 202 pounds LBM and 36 pounds of fat – a total of 238 pounds. When i’m there, my goal is to be 202 pounds LBM and 22 pounds of fat – a total of 224 pounds. This blog will chart my progress.

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