Do you have goals to gain strength while at the same time increasing lean mass and losing body fat? If you are new to functional strength training or have been away from the gym for a while, this article will give you some great insight into getting started!
In this article I will use examples from one of my client’s plans - Ken. He is 57 years old and is a very active outdoorsman. In the last 6 months, Ken has not only lost weight and body fat, but has built a significant amount of Lean body mass. He has also significantly reduced his blood pressure and is about to come off all of the blood pressure medications he was prescribed years ago - with the approval of his Doctor. Needless to say, the personalized fitness program that I have created for him over the last 6+ months has significantly improved his quality of life and longevity. His goals now are preparing for a 300+ mile backpacking trip along the Lake Superior Trail while continuing to improve body composition.
Without further ado, here is a sample of what a week of training has looked like for him:
Monday, Full Body Strength:
10 min warmup - 5 min row + 2 sets: 10x Waiters Bow, 6x Prone Press-up, Shoulder Stretch
A1: Single Arm Arnold Press on Stability Ball, @30X1 10-12/arm x 3, Rest 60 sec
A2: Barbell Good Morning, @31X1: 8-10 x 3, Rest 90 sec
B1: Single Leg Suitcase Deadlift, @3111: 10/side x 3, Rest as needed b/t sides, Rest 30 sec
B2: Cable Flies, @2011: 10-12 x 3 sets, Rest 30 sec
B3: Seated Incline Alternating Hammer Curl: @20X1: 12 x 3, Rest 90 sec
D: Reaching Deadbug: 10-12 reps/side x 3 sets, Rest as needed b/t sets
Wednesday, Aerobic Progression:
MAP10 work - C2 Rower: 40-50 minutes at easy pace - something you could maintain for hours
Friday, Full Body Strength:
Warmup: 3 sets of Front leaning rest x 30 sec, 10 Air Squats SLOW, Bench T-Spine Mobilization
A1: Dumbbell Rear-Foot Elevated Split Squat @30X1: 8-10/leg x 3 sets, Rest 30 sec b/t legs
A2: Lat Pulldown @20X1: 10 x 3, Rest 90 sec
B1: Russian Step Up: 6-8/leg x 3 sets, Rest 60 sec
B2: Dumbbell 3-point Row @ 20X1: 8-10/arm x 3 sets, Rest 60 sec
C1: Side Plank: 45 sec/side x 3 sets, no rest b/t sides, go right into C2
C2: V-sit Extensions: 20-25 reps x 3 sets, Rest 2 min
45-60 min Hike or Bike
Tempo Explanation: 30X0 – first # is eccentric portion of lift/movement (or lowering portion) 3 seconds, 2nd number would be how long to hold at the bottom of the lift, 3rd portion is concentric (how long to take to lift) with the letter X standing for explosive or as fast as possible, and the last number would be the hold at the top of the lift. A 0 would denote no hold, so right into the next repetition.
As you can see, this is not anything high intensity, it’s full body resistance training and Aerobic work that allowed him to thrive and recover well. It also features tempo training to promote Hypertrophy and Motor Control as well as Core work at the tail end of each strength training session. It did challenge him but it was also something he could be consistent with EVERY WEEK. It was aligned with his goals, and the program progressed as he did. It is important to note that training is only one piece of the puzzle, and lifestyle and nutrition are JUST AS IMPORTANT. We dialed in his nutrition and recovery protocols so that he could gain the most from his fitness program. You can work out as much as you want, but if you are not sleeping well and you are filling your body with junk, you will not get anywhere.
If this information resonated with you or you are interested in learning more about how a personalized approach to fitness can help you, let’s talk!