#FreakMode: Alex Savva's 12-Week Fitness Plan - Week 1, Day 2

Get ready for some intense HIIT cardio action! Go get your sweat on.

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Cardio is an essential part of any good fitness plan. Without it, your fitness is incomplete. You can be big and strong, but without a healthy heart that can get you through some hard work, you won't be as lean, or perform as well as you could.

I also think ab training is equally important. We won't do a whole lot of abdominal exercises during lifting days, so I like to add abdominal training after I finish cardio. Throughout this trainer, Tuesdays and Thursdays will be your cardio and ab days. This schedule will not change for the entire 12 weeks.

#FREAKMODE Alex Savva's 12-Week Fitness Plan HIIT Cardio
Watch the video - 9:10

Although there are various ways to implement cardio training into your routine, I think high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is the most effective for burning fat. Every Tuesday and Thursday, you'll choose a cardio workout based on HIIT principles.

Cardio guidelines

You can design your workouts however you wish, but there are a few guidelines I'd like you to follow.

Option 1 HIIT

You can use whatever piece of equipment you want to. I enjoy the spin bike, but you can also use the treadmill, elliptical, or even go outside.

Perform 30 seconds of work followed by 30 seconds of rest for 12 sets, or 60 seconds of work followed by 60 seconds of rest for 6 sets. Add one interval each week, but the workout shouldn't last more than 20 minutes.

Option 2 Tabata

Tabata training is simple. To do it, perform 20 seconds of work at 90-100 percent effort, and follow it with 10 seconds of rest. Do this for 8 sets, or a total of four minutes.

The key to Tabata training is that you're working as hard as you can for the entire 20 seconds. If you don't go all-out, you won't see the cardiovascular or physique improvements you'd like.

You can do Tabata on cardio machines, or you can use full-body movements. I like burpees, jump squats, kettlebell swings, jumping rope, mountain climbers, plyo push-ups, Russian twists, and chin-ups. You can pair exercises together, or choose one exercise and do it for the entire four minutes.

Core circuit

Once you've completed your cardio workout, you'll move on to the following abdominal circuit. Together, these exercises will engage your abdominals, obliques, and lower back.

If you get tired of using this circuit, feel free to replace some or all of the exercises with the alternatives.

Day 2: Core Circuit


1-3 sets of 30-60 seconds
Plank Plank

Side Plank

1-3 sets of 30-60 seconds
Side Bridge Side Bridge

Bicycle crunch

1-3 sets of 30-60 seconds
Air Bike Air Bike

Knee Raise

1-3 sets of 30-60 seconds
Knee/Hip Raise On Parallel Bars Knee/Hip Raise On Parallel Bars

Back Extension

1-3 sets of 8-12 reps
Hyperextensions (Back Extensions) Hyperextensions (Back Extensions)

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