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Back To The Gym!

I went home and devised a plan for the next two weeks to specifically target getting back into proper form. I call this my Back to the Gym Plan and hopefully it can help anyone of you reading this come back from a long layoff.

By: Jason Bennett

My last article I spoke to you about getting my fat ass out of Krispy Kreme and back into the weight lifting mood. It was hard to pull my hand out of the can of cashews, and my lips of the cool Bud, but I did it and was feeling better already.

So I had on my workout gear and started driving to the gym, dreaming of how much I was going to squat and leg press in my head, and wondering if they were going to have enough 45 pound plates for me. I couldn't wait to get in there and get started!

I walk through the doors and head to the locker room, put my bag down and then jump on the treadmill for 5 minutes of walking to get the blood flowing and my body warm and loose. After that I go into the weight room and start loosening up, and to be honest it doesn't feel all that great.

My muscles are tight and refuse to stretch at all, my abs are loose and don't feel strong enough to hold anything. But hell, I am Super J Bennett! F^%K it I said, I went straight to the squat rack and loaded up my first plates on each side, jumped underneath that sucker and started to squat.

Well I couldn't get my fat ass anything close to parallel without falling over. My form was so awkward it was like having your sister catch you sleeping with your cousin, and she says, "I'm not exactly how you say it, but I think it's called 'menache e tua'"

My knee went forward, buckled in. I bent over at the back instead of the legs, my hip flexors were so tight I couldn't go down at all. It was absolutely horrible. I couldn't figure out why I wasn't squatting 400lbs yet. "Well shoot" I said, "This sucks!!"

I had then realized that the weeks off and the gallons of ice cream didn't do me any favors! I had to step back and re-evaluate my plan of attack to get back to freakage. In addition, I was already tired from the one, half-rep I did (it was killer!).

So this is what I did, I stepped back onto the treadmill and walked quickly for a good 20 minutes and then went to the Aerobics room and stretched my entire body for another 20 minutes. I had to loosen everything up if I was ever going to make any progress under the squat rack. Once I was good to go, I went back into the gym and took the plates off and had just the bar and start doing some slow, controlled squats.

I tried to do 10 reps but it was too much! So I just did what I could for 4 sets, my legs were like jelly at this time. Then I went to the standing leg curl apparatus (I don't call it a machine, but its plate loaded-what would you call it?) and did one leg at a time, 12 reps with no weight, and to no surprise this was tough also.

Damn what a pussy I was! From there I went and did 4x15 on the leg press, deep slow reps, getting a good stretch and a very light push. I only used one plate for this. On to stiff legged deadlifts with just the bar, 3x10 and finished with extensions. We have a plate loaded one at my gym and all I used was a 25 pounder.

I was wiped out, whew! I was like a field of pussy willows flapping in the breeze, I could have been knocked over by a look in the eye! I realized that all my muscles had atrophied so much that it was going to take a bit of time to get my entire body back into the swing of things.

So I went home and devised a plan for the next two weeks to specifically target getting back into proper form. I call this my "Back to the Gym Plan" and hopefully it can help anyone of you reading this come back from a long layoff.


Getting Back Into A Routine

Day 1 - Legs

Click here for Day 1 printable workout log!

Day 2 - Chest/Delts and Traps

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    Push-ups - 4x10 (sounds weak, I know)
    Incline Barbell press - 2x10 (I used just the bar the first set and 25s the second set)
    Flat Barbell - press 2x10 (same)
    Low incline flys - 3x15 (I used the 15lb DBs)
    Rear laterals - 3x12 (I used the 12lb weights, no joke)
    Side laterals - 3x12 (again, 12lb weights)
    DB press - 3x12 (I used the 25 pound weights)
    DB shrugs - 3x10 ( I used the 35 pound DB's)

    Stretch your total body for another 10-20 minutes

Click here for Day 2 printable workout log!

Day 3 - Stretch everything for 20 minutes

Day 4 - Back

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    Lat pulldowns - 3x10 with hardly any weight
    T-bar row - 3x10 with hardly any weight
    Seated row - 2x10 with hardly any weight

    Stretch!

Click here for Day 4 printable workout log!

Day 5 - Arms

Click here for Day 5 printable workout log!

Day 6 - Stretch everything for 20 minutes

Day 7 - Don't do a thing!

Day 8 - Legs

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    Squats - 4x15
    Hack Squats - 3x12
    Lying leg curls - 3x12
    Leg Extensions - 3x12
    Stiff-legged Deadlifts - 3x15

    Stretch all of your legs!

Click here for Day 8 printable workout log!

Day 9 - Delts/Traps

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    BB Shrugs - 3x15
    DB Shrugs - 2x10 (with almost zero weight)
    Rear laterals, bent over - 4x12
    Rear Delt Machine - 2x10
    DB Press - 4x12
    Side Laterals - 3x12

Click here for Day 9 printable workout log!

Day 10 - Rest, stretch, eat

Day 11 - Back

Click here for Day 11 printable workout log!

Day 12 - Chest

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    Incline Barbell Press - 4x10
    Flat DB Press - 4x10
    Incline flys - 4x10

    Stretch

Click here for Day 12 printable workout log!

Day 13 - Arms

    Warm up extensively with light cardio and 10-20 minutes of total body stretching

    Standing BB curls - 4x10
    Skull crushers - 4x10
    Seated incline curls - 4x10
    DB overhead two-arm extensions - 4x10
    Hammer curls - 2x10
    Dips - 2x10
    Preacher curls - 2x10
    Pushdowns - 2x10

Click here for Day 13 printable workout log!

Day 14 - Rest

Day 15 - You're in there, start back with legs and start trying to increase the weights and challenge yourself

The entire point of the first two weeks is to simply get blood into your muscles and get them stretched out and loosened up and ready to start pumping again. The volume increase gradually so that by week 3 you can go back to using the volume you once were before, but not necessarily the weights you were using once before. Of course you don't have to start with legs, you can start with what you want and tailor it any way possible.

This is what I used to get my body and myself back into action and ready for punishment. Try it out, with proper nutrition and patience, you'll be back to normal in no time!

Get big or die,

Back To The Gym!
Jason.Bennett@PETERSON.af.mil

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nbasque

I wasn't sure how I stumbled on your post, but I broke this into a three week start up and only added an ab workout on what you listed as day 11. Thanks for sharing. This is great for anyone getting back. I used the printable logs to take with me.

Oct 13, 2013 4:59am | report
 
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