Sample Programme 1 ~ Beginners Fat Loss
By Chris Young
We start with the Box Squat; the aim here is to make the trainee stronger in the Squat so that they get an increase in muscle mass, and thus enjoy an increase in metabolism; but also so that the trainee can use the Squat with heavy loads at a later stage which will help with continued fat loss.
Next metabolic circuit 1 is performed for 3 rounds, followed by a rest of 3-5 minutes, and then the session is completed with circuit 2 performed for 3 rounds.
The exercises selected are usually fairly easy for beginners to master, they’re easy to follow in a busy gym, and they work a lot of muscle, which is the key to metabolic circuits.
These numbers are based on a healthy beginner up to the age of 50. After 6-8 weeks on this programme I would expect the following weights to be used:
|Exercise||Sets||Reps||Weight (kg)||Rest (seconds)|
|DB Step Ups||3||2||15||0|
|DB Bench Press||3||10||25||0|
|Exercise||Sets||Reps||Weight (kg)||Rest (seconds)|
|DB Step Ups||3||2||10**||0|
|DB Bench Press||3||10||12.5||0|
|Overhead Abs||3||10||20* **||0|
*Depends on Pulley system
Obviously your expectations will be to lose large amounts of bodyfat! Good as this system is, keep in mind that nutrition is the first priority in fat loss; see my Nutritional Guidelines for Optimal Fat Loss article.
To measure your progresses don’t go only by the scales; I recommend taking body measurements at the Neck, Shoulders, Chest, Waist (belly button), hips, thighs x 2, Calves x 2, and Arms x 2; this can be done every 2 weeks under the same circumstances (time of day / week, before eating, etc).
Please feel free to post your results and experiences in the forum section.
Notes: For best results try to ensure the following,
- Keep your programme up to date; adjust the weights you are to use at the end of each session as opposed to relying on memory.
- Do this programme for 6-8 weeks. Do this programme 3 days a week; perform interval training on any extra sessions.
- When the sets and reps are achieved then increase the weight next workout. If any strength programme is going to work then the most important factor is that the weight is increased regularly.
- Be prepared for the exercise you’re about to do. Jogging on a treadmill will give you a general warm up if you like that kind of thing, but we also need specific warm ups. For example, if you are scheduled to do 3 sets of 10 in the stiff leg deadlift using 20kg DB’s typically you would perform a set of 10 with 10kg DB’s followed by a set of 5 with 15kg DB’s before moving onto your work sets. Sure, it adds time to your workout but it’s better than getting injured. Remember the definition of a warm up is to prepare the body for the activity to come; if you’re not prepared then you haven’t warmed up. Most of my clients perform mobility exercises in-between warm up sets.
Barbell Box Squat
Box height @ _____ (number) As low as you can while maintaining an arch in your lower back.
Pins @ _____ (number) A comfortable height to return the bar to.
Catchers @ _____ (number) Just below your bottom position so you can dump the bar if needed by a slight forward lean.
Set Up: Take a huge breath into your stomach, hold it, squat down, come up and only then breathe out. Do this for each rep. Descending: Sit back to a box (bench or a couple of steps)!
Ascending: Push through the heels coming up fast; head up.
Perform as many warm up sets as needed followed by 5 sets of 5 reps with 1-2 minutes rest between sets.
Perform 10 reps in the Step Up immediately followed by 10 reps of Db Bench Presses immediately followed by 10 reps of Russian Twists; rest for 120 seconds between each of the 3 circuits.
|Step Up||Db Bench Press||Russian Twists|
Perform 10 reps of Pull Throughs immediately followed by 10 reps of Face Pulls immediately followed by 10 reps in the Overhead Ab Crunch; rest for 120 seconds between each of the 3 circuits.
|Pull Throughs||Face Pulls||Overhead Abs|
Step Height: Roughly thigh parallel to the ground.
Set Up: Take a deep breath, hold it until you’re standing.
Ascending: Push through the heel coming up fast.
Descending: Stay close to the step.
Note: Do all your reps with your weaker side before switching to stronger side. Keep your working foot on the step for continuous tension as opposed to performing a stepping step up (as they do in step aerobics).
Dumbbell (DB) Bench Press
Method –Sit on the bench with the Dbs on your thighs, lay back and pull your knees up; this will put the Dbs into a lifting position for you. Lower the Dbs to a comfortable position then press to arms length. Be sure to keep wrists and elbows in alignment. On completion of the set bring your knees up and place the Dbs on your thighs and push away; this will propel you to a seated position.
Position yourself as if you’d just finished a Sit Up (see picture); hold your hands in front of your face and twist to the left; return to the centre, re-breathe, and twist to the right; that’s one rep. A good way to increase the range of motion (ROM) is to pull the shoulder blade back of the side you are twisting to.
Set Up: Walk forward and take as wide a stance as you can.
Descending: Let the rope pull your hands and hips back as far as possible.
Ascending: Stand up straight by pulling your hips through.
Set Up: Stand with parallel feet in a full stretch position.
Ascending: Pull the centre of the rope back to between your nose and neck, upper back muscles should bunch up. Descending: Control to a full stretch position.
Overhead Ab Crunch
Set Up: Stand up tall under the pulley, not forward.
Ascending: Head down, roll into a ball.
Descending: Control to a stretched, upright position.
Chris is a British and World Champion Drug Free Powerlifter who has worked in the fitness industry since 1985, he currently runs the gym at the very prestigious Spa at Pennyhill Park (http://www.thespa.uk.com). Along with Powerlifting, Chris has competed nationally in Martial Arts, and has dabbled in Drug Free Bodybuilding. Chris can be contacted through www.getmightynow.com.