This article will go into detail on the exact exercises and set / rep ranges you can use to lose fat and build muscle. This will be done using the following principles:
- Stimulate our muscles
- Increase our heart-rate / EPOC
- Train as many different muscles as possibly per workout
- Complete the workout in a timely way so that we can keep 100% focus on what we're doing without getting tired or bored
As a preface to this article, nutrition is by FAR the most important part of losing fat so you need to remember that however hard you work in the gym, you need to be strict with your diet in order to be successful.
Sets and reps
A rep is a single movement of the exercise we are performing. For example, if we take a press-up, a single rep would involve extending your arms so that your chest is in the air and then lowering yourself down again.
When we perform a number of reps in succession with a rest period after, this is known as a set.
For each of the exercises below, I recommend that you perform 5 sets of 5 reps with a 45-60 second rest in between each set.
You should be lifting a weight that starts relatively easily, but makes it hard for you to complete the last rep of the last set for each exercise.
How often to train
Workouts should be performed at a maximum of every 48 hours to allow the body enough time to rest and recover. This is especially important when the body is running on a lower number of calories than normal when on a calorie-controlled diet.
Workout 1 should be performed one day, then 48 hours later, workout 2 should be performed. For example, a 2-weekly plan could be as shown below:
Monday: Workout 1
Wednesday: Workout 2
Friday: Workout 1
Sunday: Workout 2
Tuesday: Workout 1
Thursday: Workout 2
Saturday: Workout 1
Each workout will use 2 compound exercises for the upper body with a lower body exercise.
Exercise 1: Bench Press (Chest / Shoulders)
For the bench press, other variation of this exercise can also be used. For example:
- Incline Bench Press (Dumbbells / Barbell)
- Decline Bench Press (Dumbbells / Barbell)
- Flat Bench Press (Dumbbells / Barbell)
Exercise 2: Deadlift (Legs / Lower Back)
For the deadlift, other variation of this exercise can also be used. For example:
- Romanian Deadlift
- Stiff-legged Deadlift
Exercise 3: Row (Upper Back)
For the row, other variation of this exercise can also be used. For example:
- Seated Row
- Bent-over Row (Individual Dumbbells / Barbell)
Exercise 1: Pull Ups (Back / Biceps)
Exercise 2: Squats (Legs)
For squats, other variation of this exercise can also be used. For example:
- Hack Squats
- Front Squats
- Sumo Squats
Exercise 3: Dips (Chest / Triceps)