A Great Workout
Recently I was approached by Petro at ETB Fit to describe my current workout and what I do before and afterwards to maximize success. They feature different bloggers on their social media sites each month so I was happy to oblige when they reached out to me. If you're in need of pre workout supplements, check them out.
My workout continually evolves, but I am currently doing an upper body lower body split routine, 3 times a week. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I do resistance training. Tuesdays and Thursdays I do cardio. Saturdays I typically fit some kind of exercise in, but it is usually fun and different. I would classify this workout routine as "intermediate" level, as I have been workout out regularly now for a couple of years. If you're just beginning, I would suggest looking at this post.
I put together the following routines after reading the principles on the web site A Workout Routine, coupled with my own knowledge and experience. This approach seemed to be one of the most effective for gaining strength and losing fat.
This is an upper/lower body split routine, 3 times a week. For example, on Monday I might do an upper body routine. Then on Wednesday I would do a lower body routine, and Friday upper body again. The following Monday would be lower again, so basically I just alternate between upper and lower body, 3 times a week. Some weeks will have two lower body workouts, some will have two upper body. But I'll never go more than 5 days without working the upper or lower body again, usually 4. That gives the muscle groups time to repair, but not too long. My workouts typically last about an hour - if I finish early, I usually do some sort of cardio intervals to fill the remaining time. For variety, I have 3 different upper body and 3 lower body routines defined.
Upper Body 1
So putting it all together, my workout schedule would look something like this:
Mon Upper Body 1
Wed Lower Body 1
Fri Upper Body 2
Sat Light Cardio/Other Fitness Activity
Mon Lower Body 2
Wed Upper Body 3
Fri Lower Body 3
Sat Light Cardio/Other Fitness Activity
And then repeat.
Here's a downloadable version of the workout:
Resistance Training Notes
These I like to change up more frequently. Lately I've been taking a spinning class for an hour Tuesday and Thursday mornings. The spinning class is usually a pretty intense cardio workout, and includes sprint and resistance intervals. Sometimes for variety I will stay home and do an exercise video - Fitness Blender and Befit on Youtube have some great choices. I also have the set of original P90X workout DVDs. On Saturdays sometimes I rest, sometimes I will go to the gym with my son and swim for an hour, play tennis or some other form of cardio activity.
I usually drink a protein shake before my resistance training. Currently, it's a scoop of whey protein and a teaspoon of creatine powder in 8 oz of milk. I also currently take an NO2 pre-workout supplement that contains Arginine, Beet Root Extract, Citrulline Malate, Ornithine, and Vitamin B-3 and B-12. Nothing magical about that formula - but it does tend to give me an extra boost early in the morning to work out a little harder. The protein can be any high-quality brand. I like to consult Labdoor.com and view their rankings for supplements, but they don't have an exhaustive list so do your own research and use what works for you. With breakfast I usually take a few additional supplements, like Vitamin C, D and Fish Oil.
I usually only have water before my cardio routines. Primarily because I feel like it will maximize calorie and fat burning. Then I have the protein shake, breakfast and supplements mentioned above following my workout.
I always listen to tunes during my workouts, they always give me more energy. I use Spotify premium, which for $10 per month gives me access to just about any artist and track available. I usually put together a fitness-specific playlist that I edit over time as I run into new tunes and weed out old tunes.
My diet is about 2200 calories per day diet comprised of about 40% protein, 30% carbs and 30% fats (including fruits, vegetables, lean meats, whole grains) with a cheat meal on the weekends. My breakfast is pretty much the same each day - 2 eggs plus 2 egg whites, scrambled with 2 or 3 strips of turkey bacon and a piece of multigrain toast with jam. I have healthy snacks three times a day - morning, afternoon and evening. For lunch and dinner it's usually veggies with some kind of lean protein (usually chicken) and a healthy starch.
Obviously I didn't start out with a program like this. When I was 75 pounds heavier and unhealthy, I started out slow. Something more like this routine. Then over time my workouts became more intense. I really look forward to my time in the gym each morning - it's a time where I can focus on myself, my health and it gives me a great boost of self-confidence as I start each day.
If you ask me again in 6 months, I'm sure that my whole routine will be different, but this is a current snapshot and it's working well for me at the moment. All of this adds up to me being able to maintain a healthy body weight and 15% body fat which is considered in the athletic range and is maintainable for me.
If you like this upper body lower body split routine, please click on an ad or two, that helps pay for my costs to maintain my blog. Thanks.