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12 Weeks To Your Future Physique

Part 8: Exercise

12 Weeks To Your Future Physique - Exercise (Part 8)

Exercise is the best medicine for depression, moodiness and irritability. It disperses adrenaline and oxygenates the blood, increasing energy levels.
Overview | Mind | Pictures | Begin | Motivation | Goals | Nutrition | Exercise | Maintain | FAQ

Why Exercise?

You Will Feel On Top Of The World And Sleep Like A Baby!

Exercise is the best medicine for depression, moodiness and irritability. It disperses adrenaline and oxygenates the blood, increasing energy levels. People who exercise also fall asleep easier and wake up fewer times during the night.

You Will Avoid Illness!

Even moderate exercise has a highly positive effect on general health and wellbeing. Also, weight-bearing activities such as walking, running and aerobics help protect against the effect of osteoporosis.

You Will Feel Better About Your Body!

Working out improves muscle tone and controls weight, which can lead to a more positive body image.

You Will Keep Your Heart Healthy!

The fact is the risk of heart disease is much higher for inactive people compared to those who exercise. It also has a positive effect on cholesterol levels and blood pressure.

You Will Experience Less Stress And Think Clearer!

Exercise releases mood-enhancing chemicals and improves the flow of blood through the body, reducing stress. A healthy body means a healthy mind. Exercise helps you think straight.

Cardiovascular Exercise

Participate In A Cardio Program You Enjoy

When commencing cardiovascular exercise such as walking, cycling, rollerblading or using exercise equipment such as rowers, steppers, elliptical trainers etc, it is important to participate in something that you enjoy, or at the least don't mind. If you like the outdoors, go for a scenic walk or cycle ride. If you like company, how about a game of racket ball?

Many fitness centers have television monitors on their cardiovascular equipment to make the choice even easier. Finding the right formula to a successful transformation entails one that isn't surrounded with excuses. A hateful cardio program is a perfect excuse not to conduct it.

Cardio Intensity

Cardiovascular exercise should be conducted at such a rate that it builds up a sweat but doesn't get out of breath. Train at an intensity that you would be able to talk to somebody without too much trouble. This is called "aerobic" exercise and is mainly burning body fat. When performing aerobic exercise, the bloodstream carries a high volume of oxygen to help transport fat through the body.

Training at a more intense level such as running and or high intensity weight training is called "anaerobic" exercise, meaning oxygen is not being utilized through the bloodstream. Therefore, it's not the most ideal scenario for fat burning. This is because the oxygen that is being absorbed is being used by involuntary muscles such as heart and lungs. The duration of your cardiovascular exercise should not exceed 20 minutes at the beginning of your program.

Cardio Timing

The most beneficial time I believe for cardio is in the morning after breakfast, and this is for several reasons. One, it gets it out of the way, so if something was to arise through the course of the day, your cardio has already been completed so there is one less excuse to pick on. Set your alarm clock 30 minutes earlier than normal, don't hit that snooze button, and just get straight up (have your clothes set out to jump into, eat and walk). It also gets your blood flowing for the day and you'll feel so much better for it.

Two, is actually the main reason why you should perform cardio exercise first thing in the morning - because food acts like a thermogenic and in turn will raise your bodies core temperature. The earlier you eat upon rising the faster your metabolism will speed up to digest breakfast, thus kick starting your bodies fat burning properties for the entire day. The first cardiovascular session of the day will be more efficient and productive because the body's fat-assimilating properties work much faster when it is under the influence of a thermogenic.

The mainstay advice in many diets has been to advise dieters to perform exercise on an empty stomach. What many of these experts failed to point out was that the body is hugely catabolic after an 8-hour fast and its metabolism is at its slowest point.

Resistance Exercise

Weight training is one of the key elements to the success of your transformation. You will certainly burn off a lot of calories by following this program but you will also build a firmly-toned physique that will continue to burn calories 24/7.

The muscle density created on this weight training program will also minimize any weight gain side effect once you complete the challenge.

The muscle you will sculpt in the weight room over the next 12 weeks will require a lot more calories to maintain, so you can indulge yourself here and there without a huge concern for an aftershock of weight gain.

Duration

The duration of a resistance workout (weight training) should not exceed one hour. It should be kept intense by keeping rest intervals between sets to around 45 seconds unless your body fat is more than 30%, then I would recommend no rest intervals and to treat your workout as a circuit with lighter resistance and a higher repetition range of around 20-25. With this in mind, it would be a good idea to get your body fat checked by a health professional. To calculate your maximum heart rate take 220 minus your age. Then multiply that by 75%.

Today, most cardiovascular machines have built-in hand-held rate monitors, or you can buy one at a great price at Bodybuilding.com.

Exercise Tips

Correct techniques have to be applied when taking our first steps into a fitness program. I can totally understand that you guys out there don't want to look silly in the gym by pushing a weight that is smaller than what the girl is using next to you. If you use sloppy form because this is the only way you can lift the weight, then it is obviously too heavy for you. There are two rules to remember while lifting weights.

  1. Speed of Movement - Lifting and lowering under resistance is easier when done at high speed but this is because a lot of the stress is now placed onto tendons and ligaments which in turn can cause injury. Try adhering to the safe and effective 2+3 second rule. When lifting a resistance or weight it should take around 2 seconds from start to midpoint and when returning to start this should take around 3 seconds.
  2. Breathing - For years I have watched people hold their breath while weight training, turning a purple shade in the face until they finally let out a huge gust of air and take a new breath. This can place a lot of stress on the heart while also depriving the brain of oxygen. It can actually lower your ultimate performance during exercise.

Whenever you are about to perform an exercise, take a few deep breaths in through the nose to warm up the air and out through the mouth to clear your head. This fills your brain with oxygen to help with concentration.

Lift the weight and breath continuously, exhale on the hardest part of the exercise and inhale on the release of the repetition. This is hard to do at first but you will eventually find it effortless after no time and your performance will also improve enormously.

The 12 Week Weight Training Program

On the below-listed training programs I outline the schedule of weight training on three days throughout a 7-day schedule. It doesn't matter what days your weight training falls on, I only ask that you leave at least a day of rest in between every training day to fully recover the worked muscle. For example, some people like to train on Monday, Wednesday and Friday while others Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. You choose day 1, day 2 and day 3 to fit the schedule you are more likely to adhere to with minimal daily disruption.

Week 1-2

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes of cardiovascular work prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets. Failure should be reached at the end of every working set. To complete another full repetition should be near impossible due to muscle fatigue. Conduct 20 minutes of cardio every day.

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs, Shoulders & Abs


Week 2-4

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes cardiovascular prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets. Conduct 20 minutes of cardio every day.

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs, Shoulders & Abs


Week 4-6

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes of cardiovascular work prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets. Cardio should be increased to 3 evening sessions per week. Begin with 20 minutes before the last meal at night..

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs, Shoulders & Abs


Week 6-8

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes of cardiovascular work prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets. Cardio should be increased to 5 evening sessions per week. 20 minutes before the last meal at night will be enough to further spike your metabolism and to push past any plateaus that may lurk on the horizon.

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs, Shoulders & Abs


Week 8-10

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes of cardiovascular work prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets.

Sets are reduced from three down to two. Both sets on each exercise are to be conducted as a drop set. Once failure is reached on the initial eight reps, immediately follow this with a lighter weight that will allow another equal amount of reps. This is to be done twice on each exercise. Cardio should increase to 7 evenings per week at 20 minutes intervals. This should total 20 minutes, twice per day, 7 days per week.

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs & Shoulders


Week 10-12

Note

Please be sure to warm up for 5-10 minutes of cardiovascular work prior to weight training. Also, warm up for several sets prior to your working sets. Cardio should increase to 7 evenings per week at 20 minutes intervals. This should total 20 minutes, twice per day, 7 days per week.

Day 1: Chest, Triceps & Abs


Day 2: Back, Biceps & Calves


Day 3: Legs & Shoulders


Conclusion

The workouts listed are schedules you can follow long past the challenge finish. I have been working out consistently for 8 years and I still get great results from it.

As long as you attempt to increase the weight, sometimes the repetitions or order of exercises, change in your physique will always be apparent. If you reach the goals you worked toward and would like to maintain them without following the strict diet and exercise regime, turn onto the next page so I can show you how to maintain your successful transformation.

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About The Author

Kris is a writer and photographer and will be providing Bodybuilding.com with various types of articles.

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realdealfreedom

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realdealfreedom

This workout plan helped create a major transformation for me! Thanks Kris!

Jun 9, 2012 8:49pm | report
cre8ivee

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cre8ivee

Amazing article but I wanted to know how much weights should I if any add each rep? or should I add weights each week or every two weeks and if so, how much weight I should add and when?
Love the Article

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Nov 12, 2012 5:47am | report
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