6 Hardcore Holiday Workouts

Don't feel guilty about extra holiday calories; put them to use! Here's how three MET-Rx athletes work out during the holidays so they can have their pecan pie and eat it, too.

There's nothing quite like enjoying a great meal with friends and family. Good food and good conversation are part of what makes the holidays so special, and why we look forward to them each year. Because family and food go so well together, it can be devastating to miss out and exchange stuffing and pumpkin pie for a plate of broccoli and chicken breast.

That's why the pros at MET-Rx go into the holidays with a plan. They use those extra calories to make huge gains and come into the New Year even better. Here's how IFBB Figure champ Nicole Wilkins, men's physique pro Jason Poston, and NPC bikini starlet Justine Moore work out to make those extra calories count!

Follow their hardcore workouts so you can enjoy the holidays with the satisfaction of knowing that you're making progress toward your goals!

NICOLE WILKINSIFBB Figure competitor, four-time Figure Olympia champion

Favorite Indulgences: Cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie.

Nicole Wilkins loves to relax during the holidays and spend Thanksgiving and Christmas with her family, but she doesn't rest long. "I take those days off to spend with family and friends," she says, "but the next day I do my best to get to the gym because I feel I get the most benefits from those cheat calories that day. I use that extra energy to fuel my training and build my body!"




To get the most from those extra calories, Nicole chooses a body part she wants to improve, and then she hits it hard. "I like to train in the morning," she adds, "so I can get it done and have the rest of the day to enjoy myself. I'll also do some HIIT cardio after my strength training, but I really want those calories to go into building my muscles."

Nicole's "Make Your Cheat-Meal Matter" Workouts

Build Your Best Back
1

Pullups

4 sets of 10 reps
Pullups Pullups

2

Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown

4 sets of 10-15 reps
Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown

3

Seated Cable Rows

4 sets of 10-15 reps
Seated Cable Rows Seated Cable Rows

4

One-Arm Dumbbell Row

4 sets of 10-12 reps
One-Arm Dumbbell Row One-Arm Dumbbell Row

5

Underhand Cable Pulldowns

4 sets of 10-15 reps
Underhand Cable Pulldowns Underhand Cable Pulldowns

6

Straight-Arm Pulldown

4 sets of 10-15 reps
Straight-Arm Pulldown Straight-Arm Pulldown

Holiday HIIT
1

Running, Treadmill

30 minutes of intervals, 1 minute jog, 1 minute sprint
Running, Treadmill Running, Treadmill
Warm up for 5-10 minutes with some light cardio and dynamic stretching. Then, hop on a treadmill and get going. For your recovery intervals, jog at a pace that allows you to catch your breath. When you're sprinting, go as fast as you can for the duration of the minute. Beginners can cut the work portion of the intervals down to 30 seconds or reduce the workout to 15 minutes. For the first 5 minutes, increase the rate of your exertion during sprints. By minute 5, you should be sprinting as fast as you can. During the jog intervals, work at about a 5 on the intensity scale.

JASON POSTON IFBB Physique competitor, winner of the 2014 Europa Phoenix, 2014 New York Pro, and 2014 Europa Dallas

Favorite Indulgences: Pancakes, turkey with stuffing and gravy, and grandma's cranberry salad.

"During the holidays I do enjoy myself, but I consequently work even harder in the gym to use all that food," says Poston. "Every morning I get up and do at least 30-45 minutes of cardio on an empty stomach. I like to take a long walk or run outside with my grandparents' dogs."

Because he's constantly eating, Jason likes to hit the gym two or even three times each day to burn off what he eats. "Don't get me wrong," he says, "I love the extra work! I'll take any chance to get more fuel in the off-season, then put it toward building size."

Because Poston is diabetic and insulin-dependent, his constant gym visits are necessary to burn calories and keep his blood sugar under control.




"For each workout, I train a different body part to isolate, so I don't overtrain anything. After five minutes of mobility and flexibility work, I train a single part with super-intense, heavy, explosive movements. My workouts are 100 percent velocity weightlifting," says Poston.

"At the end of each session, I do 10-15 minutes of HIIT. I like to punch a heavy bag as hard and fast as I can for 15 seconds, then walk and rest for 45 seconds. I always follow up my intense workouts with lots of stretching and mobility."

Jason's "Turn Evil Into Good" Workouts

Fa-La-La-La Leg Routine
1

Barbell Squat

8 sets of 10, 10, 8, 6, 6, 5, 4, 3 reps
Barbell Squat Barbell Squat

2

Jump Squat

1 set of 20 reps
Jump Squat Jump Squat

3

Leg Press

4 sets of 20-25 reps
Leg Press Leg Press

4

Barbell Walking Lunge

4 sets of 20 reps
Barbell Walking Lunge Barbell Walking Lunge

5

Weighted Sissy Squat

3 sets of 25 reps
Weighted Sissy Squat Weighted Sissy Squat

Superset
6
Lying Leg Curls Lying Leg Curls

Single-Cone Sprint Drill

3 sets of 10 seconds
Single-Cone Sprint Drill Single-Cone Sprint Drill

Superset
7
Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift

Box Jump (Multiple Response)

4 set of 10 seconds
Box Jump (Multiple Response) Box Jump (Multiple Response)

Superset
8

Standing Leg Curl

3 sets of 12 reps
Standing Leg Curl Standing Leg Curl

Weighted Punch

3 sets of 10 seconds
Punches Punches
Before hitting any weight, do five minutes of light cardio followed by five minutes of functional mobility and flexibility for your legs, hips, and back. Go hard and heavy on squats, leg presses, walking lunges, and stiff-legged deadlifts. When you hit the supersets, use a more moderate weight and focus on the stretch and squeeze. Rest up to three minutes between sets of squats, and one minute between sets of other exercises. During supersets, do the strength and plyometric moves back-to-back, and then rest 1-3 minutes.

The 10-Minute, Do-Anywhere, No-Excuses Fat-Blaster
1

Burpee

10 reps
Burpee Burpee

2
Jumping Jacks Jumping Jacks

3

Combination Punches

30 reps (Left/right straight punch, left/right uppercut, left/right hook = one combination)
Punches Punches
Warm up with a light jog or some jumping jacks, then get right into the workout. Do one round, working as intensely as possible, then rest 30 seconds and repeat. Continue until you complete 10 minutes.

JUSTINE MOORE NPC Bikini competitor

Favorite Indulgences: Hot cocoa, Christmas cookies, eggnog, and all kinds of carbs!

"Holidays are a vacation," says Justine Moore. "You're supposed to enjoy life. Food is a big part of that. I like to have holiday treats and cocktails, but there is a way to do it so I don't totally wreak havoc on the work I've put in all year. So if I know I'm going to indulge, I have to earn it in the gym beforehand."


A photo posted by Justine Moore (@justinefit) on



Moore is a big fan of combining strength moves and cardio to fire up her metabolism and burn a ton of calories. "I'll choose a cardio interval, a lower-body move, an upper-body move, and a core move, and then arrange them in a circuit. I do all four exercises back-to-back and then rest one minute. I repeat that circuit three or four times," says Justine.

"If you do three or four circuits like that, you've done a 45-minute, total-body [workout] and cardio workout in one! You're in and out of the gym in an hour and you can enjoy the rest of your day with family and friends."

Justine's "Earn It" Holiday Workouts

Total-Body Triple-Circuit Workout
circuit 1
1

Jumping Jacks

3 sets of 1 minute
Jumping Jacks Jumping Jacks

Bodyweight Squat

3 sets of 1 minute
Bodyweight Squat Bodyweight Squat

Bent Over Barbell Row

3 sets of 1 minute
Bent Over Barbell Row Bent Over Barbell Row

Air Bike

3 sets of 1 minute
Air Bike Air Bike

circuit 2
3

Battling Ropes

3 sets of 1 minute
Battling Ropes Battling Ropes

Pushups

3 sets of 1 minute
Pushups Pushups

Barbell Walking Lunge

3 sets of 1 minute
Barbell Walking Lunge Barbell Walking Lunge

Plank

3 sets of 1 minute
Plank Plank

Circuit 3
4

Burpee

3 sets of 1 minute
Burpee Burpee

Kettlebell Thruster

3 sets of 1 minute
Kettlebell Thruster Kettlebell Thruster

Dumbbell Bicep Curl

3 sets of 30 seconds each side
Dumbbell Bicep Curl Dumbbell Bicep Curl

Side Bridge

3 sets of 30 seconds each side
Side Bridge Side Bridge
Warm up by doing some total-body dynamic stretching for five minutes, then begin the workout with Circuit 1. Go through each circuit three times and rest for one minute between rounds. Your workout will take a grand total of 45 minutes. After you're done, cool down and stretch for 5-10 minutes.

Killer Christmas Shoulder Workout
1

Jogging-Treadmill

5 minutes (RPE 6-7)
Jogging-Treadmill Jogging-Treadmill

Superset
2

Dumbbell Shoulder Press

3 sets of 20 reps
Dumbbell Shoulder Press Dumbbell Shoulder Press

Side Lateral Raise

3 sets of 20 reps
Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise

3

Step Mill

5 minutes (RPE 8)
Step Mill Step Mill

Superset
4
Seated Bent-Over Rear Delt Raise Seated Bent-Over Rear Delt Raise

Alternating Deltoid Raise

3 sets of 15 reps per arm
Alternating Deltoid Raise Alternating Deltoid Raise

5

Bicycling, Stationary

5 minutes (RPE 9)
Bicycling, Stationary Bicycling, Stationary

Superset
6
Machine Shoulder (Military) Press Machine Shoulder (Military) Press

Upright Cable Row

3 sets of 15-20 reps
Upright Cable Row Upright Cable Row

7

Jogging-Treadmill

5 minues (RPE 9)
Jogging-Treadmill Jogging-Treadmill


With 12g Of Exclusive Metamyosyn Protein Blend Per Serving!Go Now!