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What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat?

What is the best workout for shedding the holiday fat? Our forum members share what they believe is the best way to lose the fat. Included are in-depth workouts, diet tips and more.

By: Workout Of The Week


TOPIC: What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat?

The Question:

Now that the holidays are over we step on the scale and see a gain of 3, 4 or maybe even 5 pounds. We think back to all the brownies and cake we ate and realize that it wasn't muscle we gained.

What is the best workout for shedding the holiday fat? Be specific.List exercises, sets, reps, etc.

Would it be beneficial to increase our number of workout days?

How long will it take to shed off those few pounds we gained this holiday season?

After New Year's day, how much fat do you expect to have gained? Why this much?

Show off your knowledge to the world!

The Winners:

    New Prizes:
      1st place - $75 in store credit.
      2nd place - $50 in store credit.

To use your credit, e-mail Will @ will@bodybuilding.com for more info.


1st Place - Blink41
View This Author's BodySpace Here.


Introduction

The holidays are over and it's time to go back to work/school. The last thing we want to hear from our friends/co-workers is "Whoa, you've gained a few pounds!" In our minds, we know that they are right. So, the question is how do we get rid of this excess fat?

Well, I will show you step by step how to shed (get rid of) the holiday fat in this article. Don't worry, it's not difficult. It just takes consistency, dedication and a good diet/routine.


Workout
What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat? Be Specific. List Exercises, Sets, Reps, Etc.

Muscles burn fat faster than fat burns fat. So, what does that mean? Basically, if you have lots of muscles in your body, then your body can burn off more fat than the people who do not have much muscle in their body.

The key toward shedding off the holiday fat is by simply following a good routine and sticking to a healthy diet. Stop eating those brownies and cakes because they you here in the first place. Instead, replace them with healthy snacks such as fruits or low fat yogurt. Stick to a normal routine but with slightly higher reps and incorporate some additional cardio into your routine as well.

The Routine:

  • Monday: Chest / Triceps / Cardio
  • Tuesday: Cardio
  • Wednesday: Back / Biceps
  • Thursday: Cardio / Abs
  • Friday: Shoulder / Traps
  • Saturday: Cardio
  • Sunday: Thigh / Calves / Abs
  • For cardio days, simply run the treadmill or stair master for approximately 45 minutes at moderate intensity. If you don't like the treadmill, then just play basketball or football for approximately 1 hour or run outside and enjoy nature to burn off all the holiday fat.

    You should try to aim between 60-75 percent of your maximum heart rate in order for maximum fat burn and maximum cardio training. As a general rule of thumb to find out your maximum heart rate, simply subtract your age by 220. For instance, if you are 20-years old, then your maximum heart rate is 200. You should always remember to have a 5-minute warm-up and 5-minute cool down period when doing cardio.

HEART RATE CALCULATOR
Enter Your Age
Results
Max Heart Rate
60-75% Max Heart Rate

Chest / Tricep Days:

Back / Bicep Days:

Shoulder / Traps Days:

Thigh / Calves / Abs Days:


Plyometrics

Weightlifting and cardio are not the only ways to shed off the holiday fat. You can also do plyometrics to shed off the fat while increasing your explosive power for many sports like boxing or basketball. Plyometrics are basically a type of exercise that uses explosive movements, often repetitive, to develop muscular power in order to generate a large amount of force quickly.

This type of explosiveness is very important in sports such as boxing to throw quick punches or basketball to explode quickly and get the rebound. Plyometrics can help you burn off the fat quickly and still have fun doing it. It will improve your cardiovascular health as well as your physique.

Safety:

    Before entering the world of plyometrics, we must first look at the safety considerations first.

    Age:

      If you are still young, 16-years of age or under, then I recommend that you first start off with low weights and high repetitions until you get to the age of 17 years old.

    Experience:

      In order to succeed in plyometrics, you must first have experience in the sport of bodybuilding/weightlifting. You must first have strength in both your upper and lower body. You should be able to bench your body weight for a one rep max, squat and deadlift one and a half times your bodyweight for a one rep max before you can start plyometrics.

    Shoes:

      The proper shoes must be worn when doing plyometrics. Don't do plyometrics with Converse All Star Chucks because it won't be soon until you destroy your feet. You must be sure to wear some type of basketball shoes when doing plyometrics.

    Proper Technique:

      Ask a friend or somebody in the gym who has experience in plyometrics to help guide you. They will critique your form while you will be listening. Poor technique can destroy your body and you WILL be severely injured.

    Know Your Limits:

      Don't be stupid and just imitate what the big guys in the gym are doing. Be sure that you can hit the weight at least eight times with excellent form before you attempt the weight. Always remember:

      "Form > Weights"

    It was not my intent to scare anybody from entering the world of plyometrics but the truth is that it could be dangerous, like every other sport, if the proper precautions are not taken.


Wanna Know A Secret?

During weight training, supersets are a great way to burn off the fat and really hit the muscle hard. Supersets are basically doing two or more exercises without resting or even letting go of the weight itself.

For example, if I wanted to superset my shoulder workout, I would get the 15-pound or any suitable weight and do 12 repetitions of front raises, and then 12 repetitions of side lateral raises and finish it with 12 repetitions of rear deltoid raises, all without letting go of the 15-pound dumbbell and all without any rest in between sets. The reason why I choose the shoulders are because they respond the best to supersets, that's another secret.

supervid.htm
Super Set Video Guide:


Workout Days
Would It Be Beneficial To Increase Our Number Of Workout Days?

For the most case, yes it will be beneficial to increase the number of workout days. However, you must make sure that you do not overtrain by understanding how your own unique body works and by getting more than eight hours of sleep everyday.

Increased cardio can only cause you to lose weight. However, this loss in weight can be from either fat loss or it can be muscle loss, but most likely it will be from both. That is why it is essential that you keep your protein intake as high as you can and maintain your calories around 1800-2500, depending on your size.

As a general rule of thumb, multiply your weight in pounds by 15 and that is the number of calories you should consume to lose weight.

CALORIE CALCULATOR
Weight
Results
Calories:

Weight Loss:

    Let's examine the FACTS on weight loss:

    • Weight loss happens when you consume less calories than you burned off.
    • The most effective way to lose weight is to combine a good diet, along with cardio and strength training. By doing so, you will lose all the extra weight and keep it off. Guaranteed!
    • It takes time and patience. You might not notice any weight loss in the first few weeks, but I assure you that you are in fact losing weight. Keep on it and you'll lose all the weight you ever wanted.
    • Change things up. Just like bodybuilding, your body will get used to all the stress you put on it and will eventually stop burning as much calories as it used to. On the plus, you won't feel as tired and exhausted as you used to on the treadmill.
    • The truth is that it the older you get, the harder it is to lose weight.
    • The average person over 50 loses half a pound of muscle per year. This means that there isn't enough muscle to burn off the fat as there used to be.

Cardio:

    Let's examine the FACTS on cardio

    • Cardio makes your heart stronger. By doing so, your heart does not need to work so hard to pump all the blood through your body.
    • It supports proper sleep
    • It improves health
    • It increases metabolism rate
    • It is the ONLY way to burn off calories
    • It stabilizes stress
    • There are so many other benefits but I think you understand

    Ultimately, the more time you spend doing cardio, the more calories you will burn off. With high protein intake and high water consumption, increased workout days can only be good if you want to shed off those holiday pounds.

Need Energy ... Naturally?

    To lose weight, you need to exercise. To exercise, you need energy. Now you could look into caffeine or stimulants for energy but the truth is you don't really need them. Vitamin B is essential if you want energy, but you do not need to resort to B-Complex pills or other supplements. Simply go to the supermarket and buy some bananas.

    banana

    Bananas are a very good natural source of Vitamin B. Also, you might want to look into Vitamin C. Vitamin C not only fights infections, but it maintains muscle tissues and blood vessels. What does that have to do with me having more energy? Stronger lean body tissue is imperative in order to exercise longer and thus allowing you to burn more calories for permanent weight loss.

    Vitamin C can be found in orange, kiwifruit, cantaloupes, broccoli, strawberries and many other fruits and vegetables.


How Long
How Long Will It Take To Shed Off Those Few Pounds We Gained This Holiday Season?

Of course, it would depend on how much holiday fat you have gained. As a general rule, you should never lose more than 1- to 1.5-pound of bodyweight per week because that is considered unhealthy. By losing so much weight, you are obviously sacrificing a lot of muscle weight as well.

Try to lose no more than one pound of bodyweight per week to stay on the safe side. Results will vary according to your own unique body type and thus metabolism rate. Don't be discouraged if you don't notice drastic changes during the first month because your body is slowly but surely burning off all the fat in your body.

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On average, it takes about 1-2 months to shed off approximately 5 pounds for the average American. However, during these months, you will have to follow a good workout routine, do cardio 4-5 times a week and maintain a strict healthy diet.

For motivation, take before and after pictures of yourself in the mirror. Take the before picture RIGHT NOW and take the after picture after you have lost all the holiday fat. Remember to weigh yourself on the same scale at the same time of each day to ensure maximum accuracy.

When you compare the before and after photos, I guarantee you that you won't stop there. You will want to improve your physique even further. Follow this routine for one more year, and you will feel and look better than you ever thought possible.

To lose the weight even faster, avoid drinking soda and eating candy. Stop eating junk food and stick to a healthy diet. Studies show that eating salad regulary can actually help you lose weight, and keep it off. However, the truth is that many people add cream and sauces to enhance taste to an otherwise bland salad.

Mayonnaise may be the worst thing you could add to salad because of all the fat and calories that mayonnaise has. Eating salad with mayonnaise may be just as bad as eating a cheeseburger from McDonalds. Another good food for losing weight is a baked potato. However, do not add tons of butter to the potato because that would be very unhealthy. Instead, add cottage cheese or baked beans to the baked potato to enhance taste, and still keep it healthy.

THE TRUTH ABOUT FAST FOOD
Click On Your Favorite Restaurant To Learn The Truth!
© © © ©
© © © © ©

High Protein Diet Verses Low Fat Diet:

    Ever wondered why the Atkins diet worked so well for many people? One study in the UK for the Atkins diet proved that it wasn't the low carbohydrates that were the reason why so many volunteers were losing weight, but it was actually because of the high protein content.

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    The high protein in each meal helped dull the volunteer's appetite causing them to actually consume FEWER calories as opposed to volunteers on a low fat diet. Therefore, the ideal meal to lose weight would be a high protein low fat food, such as white chicken breast, combined with some sort of vegetable. Vegetables are typically low in calories and high in fiber, making it the ideal food choice to go along with proteins.

Absolutely No More Alcohol!

    Know why you gained so much weight during the holidays? You probably drank a lot of alcoholic beverages didn't you? Well, check out the calories in these alcoholic beverages:

    • Beer (1/2 liter): 184 Calories
    • Lager (1/2 liter): 180 Calories
    • Whisky, Gin, Brandy, Rum (100 ml): 220 Calories
    • Malibu (100 ml): 204 Calories
    • Drambuie (100 ml): 184 Calories
    • Martini (100 ml): 175 Calories

    That's a lot of empty calories, don't you think. Also, most of us don't just have one, we have several. The calories can really add up, especially if you add them with all the cake, brownies, soda and all the other junk food you had during the holidays.


After New Year's
After New Year's Day, How Much Fat Do You Expect To Have Gained? Why This Much?

I actually didn't gain much fat, if any, during the holidays. The reason for this lies in my skinny little genetics. I was born as an ectomorph, one who has a high metabolism rate. Some people call me lucky, but I think it's a nightmare. The reason why I started bodybuilding was because I couldn't stand the fact of being in the 10th grade weighing 110 pounds at 5-foot-7.

I was always the weakest one playing basketball and I'd be the smallest kid in my school. Sure I probably had 7-8 percent body fat but I'd rather have 15-20 percent body fat weighing 170-180 pounds like the others. That is when I decided to join the gym and weight train. Everybody thought I was joking back then but I was dead serious.

I just curled and benched during the first few months but I noticed little gain. I joined the Bodybuilding.com forum and found out that I was doing everything wrong. Two years later, I stand right now in college. I weigh 145 pounds at 5-foot-7 with 8-9 percent body fat currently and my long term goal is to weigh 165 pounds at 5-foot-7 with 8 percent body fat.

It was a long and difficult journey to get to where I am but I owe my success to Bodybuilding.com for showing me the ropes. I ate 7-8 medium sized meals everyday in order to gain just a bit of weight. During the holidays, I ate the same number of meals but only in bigger and unhealthier portions. However, I went to the gym 6 days a week and took the precautions not to overtrain.

I worked out hard and smart for 1 hour and did some cardio as well. I weigh myself right now and I weigh almost exactly the same as I did before the holidays.


Conclusion

It's not hard to shed off the holiday fat. Follow my routine and maintain a strict healthy diet and you'll look better than you thought possible. There's no secret supplement or diet pill that will make you lose weight faster.

The best supplement for losing weight safety and keeping it off is the treadmill. It just takes time, patience, motivation and most importantly, knowledge. You have to know what you are doing and if you read my entire article, than you have just that. Good luck and keep running

Thank you for reading my article. I hope you have learned a thing or two from this. Don't worry; the holiday fat should melt off in just a month or two. Once again, good luck and thank you.

If you have a question on this or any other of my articles, PM me at Bodybuilding.com at 'Blink41'.

Reference:

  1. www.weightlossforall.com


2nd Place - Mtguy8787
View This Author's BodySpace Here.


Workout
What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat?

The best program for shedding fat will involve a combination of circuit type weight training, high intensity cardio sessions and low intensity cardio.

Circuit Type Weight Training:

    The more mechanical work you do, the more calories your body will use. Also, the more intense, or the more work you do in a set amount of time, the greater the metabolism boost. Thus, a fast-paced, intense weight training session will be much better for burning fat than fewer, heavy sets with more long rest periods.

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT):

    As intensity increases, so do the number of calories burned from stored glycogen. However, so does the EPOC, or Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption. This bulk of this effect lasts anywhere from a few minutes, to over 24 hours. The greater this EPOC effect, the more calories your body over a continued period.

    The EPOC increases gradually with intensity, up to a certain, near maximal threshold. When this threshold is broken, the EPOC effect increases sharply. In other words, to get the most benefit from HIIT, your session should remain short, with a much intensity as possible. This method will kick your @ss, but the benefits are well worth it.

    Remember that to get the best results, your intensity should be at a maximal level. Decreasing this factor by even a small amount can decrease the EPOC effect by a much larger amount. This can be compared to strength training or bodybuilding. We all know that you must push your body past its current state to achieve optimum results. In the weight room, decreasing the overall weight by a small amount can have a big effect.

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Low Intensity Cardio:

    A period of low intensity cardio is a useful follow-up to a session of HIIT or circuit training. The previous two methods primarily increase the metabolism for an extended period of time. Low intensity cardio burns most of its fat while you are doing the actual training. In addition it is much easier to do, and is much less likely to result in over training. As such it is a good complement to a session of HIIT or circuit training.

    To burn the most fat in the shortest amount of time, it is beneficial to stack workouts in an AM/PM fashion. This helps to increase the hormonal benefits, as well as the EPOC effect of the workouts, to some degree. Doing this also allows the body to rest between, thus performing at a higher level. If it is only possible to do one workout in a day, the a.m. and p.m. sections can be combined, with minimal loss of results.


The Workout

AM Circuit Workout:

    Approximate time, 25 minutes, including warm-up.

    Guidelines:

    • Exercises will work alternating muscle groups, which allows for a greater degree of recovery, while keeping the workout at a fast pace.
    • Move immediately to the next exercise listed.
    • When a rest period is given, rest for approximately 30-60 seconds.
    • Perform as many full reps as possible for each exercise, but stop before reaching complete muscular failure. If you know you cannot get another rep, do not push until your muscles give out. This is unnecessary for burning fat, and can cause undesirable nervous system fatigue to arrive ahead of schedule.
    • 1 of 3: The Central Nervous System (CNS):

      CNS
      The human central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord. These lie in the midline of the body and are protected by the skull and vertebrae respectively.

      This collection of billions of neurons is arguably the most complex object known.

      The central nervous system along with the peripheral nervous system comprise a primary division of controls that command all physical activities of a human.

      Neurons of the central nervous system affect consciousness and mental activity while spinal extensions of central nervous system neuron pathways affect skeletal muscles and organs in the body.


      Learn More... Back Next

    • Optional exercises can be substituted for the ones given, as long as they are similar, compound movements. i.e. dips, in place of bench or deadlifts in place of squats.
    • Use 70-75% of your approximate 1 RM for all sets.

70-75% 1 REP MAX CALCULATOR
Weight Lifted Reps
Results
1 RM
70-75% 1 RM

PM Workout - Cardio:

    Guidelines:

    • The all out bursts should be just that ... all out. Remember that to get the most benefit out of, you need to be working very near, or at maximum capacity.
    • The 'slow' paced sections are there for the sole purpose of letting you recover just enough to perform another all out burst. If you feel like you can shorten the resting period by 10-or-15 seconds, do it! Likewise, if you think you could go a bit longer on the hard periods which maintaining the same pace for the slow periods, do it!
    • Always warm-up before starting a HIIT session. You do not have to stop your warm-up; it can transition directly into your HIIT session.
    • If you like to use a heart rate monitor, your 'hard' sessions should be at least 90 percent of your maximum heart rate. The slow periods should be just enough to allow you to recover for the next burst. Some people may need to slow to a fast walk, while others might be able maintain a fast jog.

HIIT:

    5 minute light/moderate intensity cardio warm-up.

    1 minute at a moderately hard pace.

    15-30 seconds at an all out pace 30-60 seconds at a slow pace 15-30 seconds - all out 30-60 seconds - slow

    Repeat this until the timer reaches 15 minutes or more. Do not continue much longer than 20 minutes, including the warm-up time.

    2-5 minutes rest.

Low-Intensity Cardio:

    Any exercise you do here is gravy. You have already done a kick-ass fat burning workout, but if you are looking to burn as much as possible, now is the time to do it.

    Time

      Do not continue for much longer than 30 minutes.

    Intensity

      Approximately 40-60% of maximum heart rate. If you do not use a HRM, this could be anywhere from a walk to a moderate jogging pace. As mentioned before, this extra work is gravy. You have already done your high intensity work, so keep the intensity at less than 70% of your maximum heart rate to maximize the amount of fat burned.


Alternate Day Workout

Perform the previously given workout every other day. The day in between can be a rest day, or, if you desire, a low/moderate intensity cardio day.

  • Try and workout for at least 20 minutes, but no longer than 1 hour.
  • Work at approximately 70 percent of your maximum heart rate. This figure may change based on your fitness level.


Diet Tips

  • Be sure to eat frequent meals, every 2-3 hours.
  • Eat balanced meals, consisting of carbs protein, and a small amount of fat.
  • Make sure you have eaten 2-3 hours before working out.
  • Make sure that you are consuming enough water. Even mild dehydration can significantly slow your basal metabolic rate.
  • Make sure that you are consuming sufficient amount of electrolytes and minerals, namely sodium. Without sufficient salt, your body will remain in a state of dehydration, regardless of how much water you drink. The greater the deficiency, the more you will be dehydrated.
  • Eat lots of highly thermogenic foods. These consist mostly of low calorie, high fiber fruits and vegetables. Some good vegetables include celery, carrots, lettuce, and raw spinach. Good fruits include most types of berries, citrus (especially grapefruits), watermelon and apples. Eating these will not make a huge dent, but they will help some, and also are an excellent natural source of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients


Workout Days
Would It Be Beneficial To Increase Our Number Of Workout Days?

For the purpose of burning fat, yes. More workouts equals more calories burned, which equals more fat loss. The only thing to watch out for is overtraining. A 20-minute circuit weight training workout done every other day is not that much for most people. But when you add HIIT to that, the possibility of overtraining becomes larger.

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Just be careful not to get over enthusiastic about HIIT. Extra workouts can be added in the form of low to moderate intensity cardio sessions.

However, there is an upper limit to the amount of cardio you should be doing. Over a period of time, excessive volume can actually decrease testosterone levels. In general, keep your overall volume at less than 10 hours per week.


How Long
How Long Will It Take To Shed Off Those Few Pounds We Gained This Holiday Season?

That depends on how much fat you gained over the holidays. A couple extra body fat percentage points, or approximately five pounds of extra fat could likely be eliminated in about two weeks in the majority of cases.


After New Year's
After New Year's Day, How Much Fat Do You Expect To Have Gained? Why This Much?

Over the entire holiday season, I have been able to keep fat gains at a minimum. On most days, I have eaten a large amount of food, with the end result being 1, perhaps 2 pounds of extra fat. This is in part due to my body type, which fortunately lies in the mesomorphic region. However, this was mostly due to me maintaining my workout through the holidays. It was not nearly as much as my normal routine, but it was enough to help minimize the fat gain.


3rd Place - ManInTheBox
View This Author's BodySpace Here.

Now that the holidays are over ... we step on the scale and see a gain of 3, 4 or maybe even 5 pounds. We think back to all the brownies and cake we ate and realize that it wasn't muscle we gained.

We all have lives we have to live. One of the most important things is realizing when too much is too much. That goes for your dedication to bodybuilding and having fun. A lot of bodybuilders live strict lives and limit having fun and living life.

The holidays are a time when special and memorable occasions happen. But control is also a important thing to keep in mind. When that turkey and dressing is on the table, you have to know when to portion how much you are going to eat and take a mental note of how many calories you want to consume.


Workout
What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat? Be Specific. List Exercises, Sets, Reps, Etc.

  • Before getting yourself into a new workout to shed additional fat that was collected during your holiday gatherings, you need to take into consideration that you need to go about it appropriately and not jump into anything that will be more detrimental to you in the long run.
  • First of all you need to take into consideration your weight, and body fat level, and how many calories you want to consume on training days and off days. From here you can appropriately take into consideration how much cardio you want to do and how often you want work out.
  • Our workout is going to be a five day workout, and three days of weight training, with five days of cardio, with two days of cardio for your off days.

Monday - Cardio/Chest/Biceps:

  • *15 Minutes Cardio Prior To Workout
  • Flat Dumbbell Bench Press: 10, 10, 10
  • Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 12, 12, 12
  • Pec Deck: 15, 15, 15
  • Barbell Bicep Curls: 12, 12, 12
  • Dumbbell Preacher Curls: 10, 10, 10
  • *15 Minutes Cardio Following Workout
  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Monday.

    We'll start our week off with a moderate workout. We'll spend a little more time on our chest to stimulate more tissues and increase our heart rate. We will then accessorize with some good bicep work. Doing good movements such as the barbell curl and dumbbell preacher curls will stimulate our biceps well.

    We have to remember that we want to get a good stimulation of the muscle, and not to obliterate it. Of course we will start our workout with some light cardio, breaking a sweat prior to our workout. Then following our workout we will do another 15 minutes of light cardio, to keep our hearts working. We want to keep our workouts right around an hour's time.

Tuesday - Cardio/Abs:

  • 30 Minutes Of Cardio
  • Hanging Leg Raises: 20, 20, 20
  • Sit-ups On A Decline: 25, 25, 25
  • 15 Minutes Of Cardio
  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Tuesday.

    Today is going to be dedicated to losing the fat and shaping up our stomachs. We'll start off with a pretty intense cardio workout that should take us about 30 minutes to complete. Following, we will two main exercises to stimulate the entire abdominal region.

    Following our abdominal workout, we will do a 15 minute cool down at a bit of a slower pace than earlier, to keep our hearts pumping.

Wednesday - Cardio/Legs/Shoulders:

  • *15 Minutes Of Light Cardio Prior To Workout
  • Barbell Squat: 20, 15, 12, 12
  • Walking Dumbbell Lunges: 12, 12, 12
  • Lying Leg Curls: 15, 15, 15
  • Barbell Military Press: 12, 12, 12
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises: 15, 15, 15
  • Front Dumbbell or Plate Raises: 12, 12, 12
  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Wednesday.

    This workout will limit the cardio a bit to leave us with enough energy to push through a very tough workout! We will get our hearts racing when we walk into the squat rack to do four sets of high reps on barbell squat! Next will come dumbbell lunges, which will keep our hearts up as we will be walking when we do these.

    Afterwards, we will hit our hamstrings more directly by doing three sets of fairly high reps on lying leg curls. By this time our legs will be pumped and ready for a break! Following our legs, we will hit our shoulders with a few sets of heavy barbell military presses. This will stimulate our entire deltoid, but then we will accessorize by hitting our medial and front deltoids with some dumbbell work.

Thursday - Cardio/Abs:

  • 20 Minutes Of Cardio
  • Dumbbell Side Bends: 20, 20, 20
  • Stomach Vacuum (3 sets, hold for as long as possible)
  • Hanging Leg Raises: 20, 20, 20
  • 10 Minutes Of Cardio (Cool down)
  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Thursday.

    Today will be much like Tuesday. We will cut our cardio down just a bit, and do a little more abdominal work. We will focus on our obliques, the flatness of our stomachs, and once again our entire abdominal region during our hanging leg raises. We will end our workout with 10 minutes of cardio, to keep our metabolism supercharged.

Friday - Back/Traps/Triceps:

  • *15 Minutes Cardio Prior To Workout
  • Barbell Deadlift: 10, 8, 8, 8
  • Seated Machine Rows: 12, 12, 12
  • Seated Low Pulley Row: 12, 12, 12
  • Barbell Shrugs: 10, 10, 10
  • Triceps Rope Pushdowns: 15, 15, 15
  • Parallel Bar Dips (3 sets to failure)
  • print Click Here For A Printable Log Of Friday.

    This is our final day of working out, and you will be glad that it is! By this time you will be feeling the effects of your new workout. Today will hit your entire back, including your lower, upper, inner and outer back. Afterward, we will stimulate our triceps by warming them thoroughly and pumping them up with some high repetition rope push-downs.

    Ending our workout, we will hit our entire triceps by doing parallel bar dips. Getting a good stretch on the descent of your dip and powering up will work your triceps well. I listed doing three sets until failure, but if you have time left under an hour, feel free to crank out an additional set if you feel up to it. Remember that less can be more, so only do additional work if you feel up to it.


The Diet

It's crucial to keep in mind that if you are planning on losing body fat or gaining muscle that you must keep your diet in mind. The only way that you can succeed in reaching your goal is through proper diet.

Here is a sample diet that will give you an idea of healthy foods to pick up at the grocery store and keep in your pantry.

9:00 am:

  • 1 cup oatmeal with some fresh berries
  • 1 cup skim milk

11:30 am:

  • 1 banana
  • Two slices of 100% whole wheat toast
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg whites

2:00 pm:

  • Skinless chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup of brown rice
  • 1 cup skim milk

5:00 pm:

  • 1 Salmon fillet
  • Side of fresh vegetables
  • 1/4 cup of brown rice

7:30 pm:

  • Skinless chicken breast
  • Side of fresh vegetables

10:00 pm:

  • 1/2 cup of fat free cottage cheese
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 2 tbsp of natural peanut butter

This diet will supply you with healthy fats, healthy complex carbohydrates, and ample protein. You will of course want to adjust it to your goals and weight goals. But it does bullet healthy foods, and the frequent meal plan. Eating every two to three hours will rev your metabolism and help you burn more fat.

Eating every two to three hours will also keep your body in an anabolic state, feeding your muscles with a constant flow of energy and protein. Also, you must remember the importance of water. Water is one of the most important nutrients that your body needs to function properly.

Always drink at least one gallon of water a day. Drinking one fluid ounce per pound of body weight is optimum. Along with a good diet, and lots of water, comes rest. Getting 8-9 hours of sleep a night will help you reach your goals and keep your performance in the gym optimum!

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Workout Days
Would It Be Beneficial To Increase Our Number Of Workout Days?

This is a question that is difficult to answer. In my opinion, keeping your workout days to a minimum is the best. If you choose to do an everyday routine, you should definitely be aware of the clock, and be sure to let your body get plenty of rest.

One of the biggest factors when it comes to bodybuilding is the amount of rest you get. People underestimate the rest factor and often overlook it. You can vary your diet, vary your routine, yet still see no gains or fat losses due to your sleep habits.

What I am getting at here is to decide on your workout days according to what you are used to. If you have been doing a 3-day routine for a year, then the holidays came and you slacked off, it would not be wise in my opinion to then jump into a 7-day routine working out hours at a time. You have to do what works best for you, and what yields you the best results.

You may maximize your routine by easing slowly into a new program. You may want to increase it monthly. For the coming month, go back to your routine, and increase reps and cardio, and for the months following, you can increase a workout day at a time. I am a strong believer in the "less is more" saying, as you do not want to drive your body to the point of complete mental and physical failure.


How Long
How Long Will It Take To Shed Off Those Few Pounds We Gained This Holiday Season?

If you follow this workout, you should expect to lose quite a bit in the first few weeks. How? I would have to say that a lot of weight that people gain during the holiday season is water weight. You see people who gain 2-and-3 pounds in a day, and the only way that you can do that is by eating a lot of simple carbohydrates and sodium rich foods.

These factors combined will equal excess water weight. Of course, simple carbohydrates and sodium rich foods are a part of the average holiday season, so these ideas are not hard to believe.

Eating many sweets and high calorie foods will cause excess fat to collect though. Sugar is a huge cause of that fat that collects on your stomach. It will take between two and three months to get back to your old self, but honestly, it varies from person to person. It is difficult to pinpoint how much fat you put on from my point of you, but if you follow this workout and diet, you should be in excellent condition for next summer to hit the beaches!


Click To Enlarge.
You Should Be In Excellent Condition.

Remember, abs are not made in the gym, yet they are made in the kitchen! Before eating another cheat meal, keep in mind that eating something fattening is only going to make you step backwards twice, when you were one step ahead of the game.


After New Year's
After New Year's Day, How Much Fat Do You Expect To Have Gained? Why This Much?

After all of the holidays are said and done, I think I will have come out with gaining maybe a pound or two of fat. Not a whole lot though, and I can tell you why. I have been blessed with a fairly fast metabolism. Secondly, I never pig out during dinners. I try to choose my foods carefully and wisely.

If I am given a table that has turkey, chicken, beef, vegetables, buttered mashed potatoes, fried onion rings and whole milk, it should be clear what choices are the best ones to make. You should choose foods where you can find lots of clean protein, and good carbohydrates.

I find myself not finding a lot of good carbohydrates on the dinner table, but it is easy to take in a lot of good protein. You just have to live life and use common sense though. If you are given a wide variety of desserts, try to get fruit dishes, and ones that aren't full of sugars.

Now that the holidays are over with, I hope you can use my exercise plan to help you get back on track with your goals. Remember to keep your eyes on the prize, and don't let your guard down. I always say, everyone has the potential if they want something bad enough. When I weighed 130 pounds, I wanted to weigh 150. When I weighed 150, I wanted to weigh 175. When I weighed 175, I wanted 185. When I got to 185, I wanted 200. Here I am at 205 today, and I am still looking forward.

I wish everyone the best of luck with reaching their goals, and hope that my workout plan and sample diet can help everyone out.

Kevin B.
BKevin89@aol.com


3rd Place - Liquid_diet
View This Author's BodySpace Here.

Between holiday cooking, holiday partying, and holiday relaxation, it can be easy to gain a few unwanted pounds from Thanksgiving through New Year's Day. It is common to step on a scale at the beginning of a new year and see an increase in body weight, and more precisely, body fat. While many of us have already resolved to lost weight for the new year, we are now faced with even more fat to lose than previously planned.

This can be discouraging, but it doesn't have to be. Between exercise, diet and even some help from a supplement or two, we can all shed those unwanted holiday pounds.


Workout
What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat? Be Specific. List Exercises, Sets, Reps, Etc.

For losing fat, one is going to focus on a cutting routine. This means that an individual wants to burn more calories than they are consuming in order to decrease body fat. The best way to burn calories is to increase the cardio and keep the heart rate (HR) up.

In regards to lifting, it is unrealistic to bulk and cut at the same time, so there is no need to go heavy weights and low reps during the cutting phase. During lifting workouts, one should attempt to keep the HR up by decreasing rest time in between sets and possibly supersetting exercises.

Below is a workout routine for those that need to shed a few unwanted pounds after the holiday:

Cardio:

    Cardio should be performed 5 times a week for 45 minutes.

    Cardio can be performed on a treadmill, an elliptical machine or a stationary bike.

    One should focus on keeping the HR at between 55-70% of maximum HR, which can be calculated by subtracting one's age from 220.

    Individuals can also jog outside or ride a bike if weather permits.

    With so much cardio, I'm going to suggest a pretty simple lifting routine. I am suggesting a 3-day split broken down as follows:

Monday - Chest/Triceps:

Wednesday - Back/Biceps:

Friday - Legs:

Abs:


Diet

In addition to an effective exercise plan, it is going to be important to have the right nutrition as well. Eating 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day, comprised of a good ratio of carbs/proteins/fats, can actually boost metabolism.

Decreasing overall calories, but spreading them out more throughout the day, can help decrease feelings of hunger as well.

There are also some excellent nutritional supplements out there that can help to boost metabolism, burn fat and suppress appetite. Adding the right supplement into the diet can add that extra boost you need to get through this post-holiday cutting phase.


Workout Days
Would It Be Beneficial To Increase Our Number Of Workout Days?

This depends on how long the individual desires to workout each day. The goal of a cutting routine is to burn more calories than are being consumed. You need to burn about 3500 calories more than are consumed to lose one pound.

Cardio should be broken up throughout the week to burn these calories. Someone could do cardio four times a week for one hour, or six times a week for 40 minutes to achieve the same results.

Depending on what an individual's schedule is like, it may be beneficial to work out harder for fewer days a week, or more moderately for additional days. However, I would not suggest trying to burn all the desired calories in a day or two.


How Long
How Long Will It Take To Shed Off Those Few Pounds We Gained This Holiday Season?

How long it will take is up to the individual and depends on how much weight they want to lose, and how hard they are willing to work to lose it. However, no matter how motivated someone may be to take off the weight, it must be done safely. It is realistic and safe to lose no more than two pounds per week.

It would be realistic for someone looking to lose 10 pounds of body fat to set a goal for losing the weight over at least five weeks. It would be even better to try and achieve this lower target weight over six or seven weeks so as to not become discouraged.

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After New Year's
After New Year's Day, How Much Fat Do You Expect To Have Gained? Why This Much?

Due to my body type, metabolism, and diet, I fortunately did not gain any fat over this holiday season. Being at least partly an ectomorph, I have trouble gaining weight, and I lose it quickly when I need to. This can be bad when I'm trying to bulk, but when avoiding extra body fat over the holidays it is ideal. My metabolism is high enough that when I do consume a few holiday goodies here and there, I don't suffer much.

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The main reason I am not going to be cutting at all after the holidays is because my diet remained on point throughout these last few months. I still watched my calories, and the proportions of carbs/protein/fats in them, on almost every day. I have also given up alcohol since the end of summer. This has really helped me to avoid those extra calories over the holiday season.

The holidays are meant to be a time to relax a little and enjoy oneself. Do not be discouraged if you gained a few extra pounds, for they can be lost again.


What Is The Best Workout For Shedding The Holiday Fat?

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