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Post-Holiday Fitness Series: Workout Plan

With another holiday season now over, many of us are getting settled back into our normal routines and looking to develop new routines. For some this will include getting back to the gym and changing their eating habits so that they can lose weight, add muscle and live a healthier lifestyle. I am no different. The holiday season is my time each year to relax my strict eating habits, take an extra day or two off of working out each week and spend time relaxing and recharging. Throughout the holiday season I typically maintain a 4-day split at the gym, down from my normal 6-day program. But now it’s time to ratchet my workouts back up, shock my body and get back to a strict eating and supplement regimen.

Announcing the Post-Holiday Fitness Series

As I was working on tweaking my post-holiday routine, several people expressed interest in me publishing it. That has formed into the “Post Holiday Fitness Series” which will be a series of posts breaking down different elements of leading a healthier lifestyle. During this series we will cover my workout plan, a sample meal plan, what supplements & vitamins I use and how I design my workout playlist.

My hope is that you’ll be able to take these concepts and apply them to your life. If you’re already actively working out, maybe there will be a tweak to your fitness plan that you make. If you’ve wanted to eat a stricter diet or are curious about supplements, hopefully there are elements of my plan that will prove helpful to you. If you need a few basic tips to get motivated again, here are 9 tips for getting back in shape and 7 simple fitness tips that can help you.

About The Post-Holiday Fitness Series

The reason why I’m choosing to focus on my plan instead of designing a generalized plan is that each of us are at a different point with our fitness. Some will be just starting while others will be more advanced. These are the exercises, foods, supplements, vitamins and music that work best for me to achieve my current goals. I have been working out my entire life, growing up going to gyms with my dad and have been working out consistently 4-6 days per week for the past 2 years.

This phase of my fitness plan is focused on increasing cardio while still building muscle with a goal of reducing body fat.

A few notes about the below program:

  • Most lifting programs are structured with chest/triceps and back/bicep splits but I find that by using a chest/biceps and back/triceps split, I am able to better target all muscle groups instead of the chest and back taking the primary role and the triceps and biceps taking a secondary role. If you’re going to use the below plan, test with both splits to see what works best for you.
  • There is cardio every day. As body fat percentage gets lower, it becomes harder to reduce it even more therefore I have ratcheted up cardio from 3 days per week to 6 days per week. Over the years I have tested with 2 workouts per day and find those effective – lifting in the morning and doing cardio in the evening however with upcoming travel and a demanding work schedule, I structured the cardio into my morning routine. If I can sneak in an extra session a couple days per week at night, that will be a bonus. This also doesn’t take into account the 3-4 times per day that I take Sasha for a walk.
  • Due to an existing knee issue, my legs workout is far reduced from what most people prefer to do. I’m not able to do exercises such as squats, leg extensions or other movements that put extreme stress on my knee. In fact for several years I didn’t do leg exercises at all because of the pain it would cause me. You may choose to break out legs into a single day and add several more exercises to your plan.
  • For every movement there is a link to a how to video, most of them thanks to the amazing Muscle & Strength video database. If any or all of these movements are new to you, please take the time to learn how to perform these exercises correctly. Learning how to perform the movements correctly will prevent injury and help you to achieve your goals.

My Current Workout Plan

Total Duration: 45 minutes – 1 hour each day
Rest Time: 30-45 seconds in between sets / 2-3 minutes in between exercises

Monday – Chest & Biceps

Tuesday – Cardio & Abs

Wednesday – Back, Triceps & Forearms

Thursday – Cardio & Abs

Friday – Shoulders, Traps & Legs

Saturdays – Cardio & Abs

Sundays – Rest / Stretching

Sundays are a day of rest for me. I use this time stretch my muscles and recover before starting another week. If I can, I will try spending 15-20 minutes in a hot tub to relax my muscles.

If you would like a spreadsheet template of this workout plan, subscribe to my free weekly newsletter where I will publish a template that you can use, thanks to Clay Hebert.

What’s Next in the Post-Holiday Fitness Series

In the next article we’ll discuss structuring a meal plan to achieve the proper amount of protein intake and fuel your body on consistently throughout the day. If there are any questions you have or other topics you would like to see covered in this series, please let me know in the comments below.

Photo Credit: elcamino73

  • John Normoyle

    Awesome list, thanks Justin. Do you usually do the exercises in order or mix it up swapping from muscle group to muscle group and/or availability of machines?

  • justinlevy

    Glad you enjoyed it, John! Right now I’m doing it in the exact order that I posted but occasionally make tweaks based on availability. I’ll swap barbell for dumbbells or something like that. In the past I have tested with switching between muscle groups throughout a workout, going from a chest exercise to biceps to chest and so on. I had decent results but nothing like when I stack it this way.