By Fred Lunt, Contributor
Living a healthy, fit lifestyle can be more than just a workout; for some it can be part of a daily routine while for others it’s the gym is life. Unfortunately we all hit a point where it seems impossible to get away and hit the weights like we used to.
For me, this came when my first daughter came to into my life. While I was absolutely overjoyed at the new addition to our happy little family, I noticed that I was irritable, having no outlet to blowing off steam at and I felt like I was wasting away after a few months. I found my solution through much research and testing to make a quick workout program that would allow me to grow mass and rebuild strength from the diaper duty days.
This is a three-part, high intensity workout so you should be completely stretched and warmed up prior to starting. You can use this routine for any body part, chest, shoulders, back, etc. The core of this strength-building workout focuses on two sets of compound joint exercises and one set of single-jointed movements. Over time you’ll be able to vary different angles and forms with the compound exercises.
Part I: 4 x of 5 reps, Heavy weight.
This is your bread and butter, best of your best lift. If you’re doing chest, go for a good flat bench or incline bench and pick a weight that’s challenging but will still doable by the fourth set. It’s important to attain at least 5 reps each time, if you fail simply remove some of the weight and finish the set. Feel free to switch this up and improve another workout you’re struggling on.
Part II: 4 x 8-10 reps, Medium weight.
This will be a weight that, while still challenging, is form focused and the minimum reps are once again required. For this second part you may want to change the angles from your first part, if you did flat bench to incline bench or maybe do dumbbells or a machine for incline. Remember, there’s no pause or break between this and the heavy set so don’t overdo it.
Third III: 4 x 12 reps, Light weight.
It’s time to rep it out. Pick a low weight you can do for at least 12 reps, if you feel like doing more then by all means go for. This exercise should focus on simple, single joint movements. Using chest as example once again—do 12-15 reps of dumbbell flies or incline flies. Make sure whichever ever workout you choose that you achieve the full suggested reps and keep a clean form.
Ready to go again? Rest for approx. 60-90 seconds before going back at it, no more or less. This whole workout should only take 20-30 minutes and the results should quickly follow.
Example Chest Workout
- Flat Bench: 5 reps of 245 lbs.
- Incline dumbbell press: 8 reps of 75 lbs.
- Flat bench Pec Flies: 12 reps of 25 lbs.
- Rest 60-90 seconds.
- Repeat for a total of 4 sets.
Got Extra Time?
Be certain to throw some cardio into the mix. About 5-10 minutes is preferable for optimum cardio health and adding explosive cardio workouts such as jump rope or squat jumps is a surefire way to burn out those muscles and keep up that sweat.
Remember These Tips:
If you’re trying to cut back time spent at the gym try to:
- Diversify your exercises. Cut out exercises from your routine that focus to heavily on one movement. If you’ve done two different forms of shoulder press—you probably don’t need one more.
- Cut cellphone use: I know it’s tempting but your Facebook feed can wait– look at those kitten pics after the gym.
- Cut down rest time: Ideally you shouldn’t spend any longer that 2 minutes on a rest, the idea of working out is to increase your heart, joint, and muscular fitness and a log break can kill any workout and stretch your time in the gym to its limits.
About The Author:
Fred Lunt is a creative writer and editor with a knack for pizazz. He’s done behind the scenes work on multiple national news outlets and lives to write. Having written and managed blogs for healthcare, finance, disability, and luxury & cigars, Fred has moved across the board writing and promoting the latest in news and education. He is currently an editor at Cigar Advisor Magazine and an avid purveyor of cigars, fine whiskey, and craft beers. He is a graduate of Temple University and lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and daughter.