For weeks 1-3, perform the following exercises back to back with minimal rest in a circuit format, performing 12-15 repetitions per set. Perform 2-4 circuits through and rest for a couple minutes after you have completed a circuit. Listen to your body and take breaks if needed. Don’t go crazy on the weights that you use right away and gradually work your way up to heavier weights as you become comfortable. Do not push through pain – a little discomfort is OK, but not pain. Perform this circuit three non-consecutive days per week.
Circuit, no rest between exercises, 2 minutes rest at the end of each circuit :
1A. Squat with dumbbells: 3 x 12
1B. Stiff leg deadlift with dumbbells: 3 x 12
1C. Swiss Ball bench press with dumbbells: 3 X 12
1D. Dumbbell rows: 3 x 12
1E. Dumbbell Shoulder press: 3 x 12
1F. Swiss ball crunch: 3x 15
1G. Isometric Plank on elbows: (Hold for 30 sec-1min)
After three weeks switch to this program:
Perform the following program three non-consecutive days per week. Perform the exercises in a superset format (A1 then A2 with no rest). Rest 30 seconds to 45 seconds after each superset and repeat each superset three times (3 total sets then move on to the next superset). Continue in this fashion until you have completed all supersets. Try to use slightly heavier weights during this three week segment. Start off with 3 sets of 8 reps of a given weight and each workout try to beat what you did last time for reps. If you can do 3 sets of 12 at a given weight make a note to increase your weight the next time you perform that workout.
A1. Squat with dumbbells: 3 x 8-12
A2. Stiff-legged deadlift with dumbbells: 3 x 8-12
B1. Swiss Ball bench press with dumbbells: 3 X 8-12
B2. Dumbbell rows: 3 x 8-12
C1. Dumbbell Shoulder press: 3 x 8-12
C2. Supine bench dumbbell rows: 3 x 8-12
D1. Swiss ball crunch: 3x 15-20
D2. Isometric Plank on elbows (Hold for 45 sec to 1min)
After six weeks of this training take a week of ‘Active Recovery’ where you perform physical activities every day but totally different then what you did above (for example: try swimming, hiking, biking, kickboxing class, spinning class, go for walks, play frisbee, etc). When you start your next six week block of training, work in some different exercises for the various muscle groups to add some variety to your training and to keep the results coming.
-Record your training sessions in a journal.
-Increase your water intake during these first couple weeks.
-Use a stopwatch to make sure you’re staying on target with your rest times.
-Save static stretching for the end of your strength training sessions.
-Get adequate post-workout nutrition consisting of protein, carbs, and healthy fats, if you can.
-Last, but not least – Have fun!
To your health and success,