Every so often it’s good to give your workout routine a little refresh, and after doing almost three months’ of the same workout four days per week, I figured it was about time my training plan had an overhaul. I liked what I was doing, but it stopped challenging me and I gradually became less focused and saw little in the way of results. So, things needed to be stepped up a level! Summer is approaching fast, so I don’t have much time to waste in making sure I’m in the best shape possible for shorts weather and beach days!
Having a plan is so important! My gym schedule is the same every week, but if I didn’t have it, I’d find an excuse to put off my workout, or just skip it altogether. So, I always plan to hit the gym on a Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday morning. That way my four workouts become a staple part of my week, and I know that any other ‘ad hoc’ plans have to fit around it. I’m not the kind of person to lay in for hours, though sometimes a chilled Saturday morning is exactly what I need, so my morning session can occasionally become an afternoon session!
5.45am starts became a thing for me back in September, and they’re still happening, much to my amazement! Having to obey that damn alarm feels like the worst thing in the world because my duvet conveniently turns into a big ball of warm, squishy goodness the second I’m awake, but once I’m up, I don’t mind it. I actually quite like it, because afterwards I set off for work feeling refreshed, awake and as though I’ve achieved something good – all before 9am!
Every morning I do the same thing, in the same order. I get into my gym gear, wash my face and apply a bit of tinted moisturiser, shove my hair into a ponytail, whack on some deodorant, fill up my water bottle, grab my phone, keys and lifting gloves – and head out into the darkness. Lighter mornings, I’m so ready for you! Darryl and I go to the gym together and take it in turns to drive which makes things easier, because I don’t think I’d be half as motivated if I was going alone!
As I mentioned, my workouts have recently changed to kick my butt into gear before summer. Darryl and I work out for 40 minutes, split into two segments. Segment one consists of weight training, which is lower body focused on one day, and upper body focused the next. The actual exercises vary day-to-day because it depends on the equipment available, but a typical strength workout looks like this:
3 x 10 reps barbell squats at approx. 30-40kg
3 x 10 reps leg press at approx. 40-50kg
3 x 10 reps cable kick backs at approx. 30kg
3 x 10 reps cable side kicks at approx. 30kg
5 minutes on the Skierg at level 6/10
3 x 10 reps cable pull downs at approx. 40kg
3 x 10 reps cable wood chops at approx. 4okg
3 x 10 reps free weight arm exercise at approx. 8-10kg
Segment two is a solid 20 minute HIIT workout. We set the timer for 40 seconds work and 20 seconds rest, and take it in turns to pick a high intensity exercise – keeping it varied to target lower body, core and upper body. I love weight training, but it’s definitely the HIIT that leaves me feeling like I’ve worked hard! No doubt this routine will adjust every week to match any progress, but for now, the structure we’ve got is perfect.
By roughly 7am, we’re already finished for the day! The first thing I do when I get home, before jumping in the shower, is refuel with a whey protein shake. I don’t know if these shakes actually benefit me in any way, I just have them to up my protein for the day – and also because I genuinely look forward to them.
And that there, is my renewed spring fitness routine! Morning workouts might seem horrendous, but they’re ideal for someone like me who, after a long day at work, just wants to sit and watch a good series on Netflix and enjoy a nice dinner. That said, the earlier sunrises will be seriously appreciated, because I’m so over driving in dark, foggy, cold weather! Reason #101 why I want a home gym in my future house…