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Surge Into Spring: 28 Day Exercise Plan - Week 4

Feel free to call it a 28-day workout plan, a 28-day bust it to bikini season, a revamp of your fitness, whatever. Call it what you like! I only ask that you take this 28-day plan, and ANY exercise plan, with a grain of salt. There is no one-size-fits-all routine. But this exercise plan will help satisfy a ton of your body’s needs. It is suitable for beginners and advanced exercisers alike and can be completed in or out of a gym! There are lots of extra suggestions too, for how you can make the routine your own and boost your results. So, get ready to surge into spring. Get ready to thrive!

Below, you will see a 28-day program that incorporates all three energy zones of training. To put this simply, the exercises in this program tap into strength, speed, and endurance training. Why all three?

Strength (or building towards strength) – assists in muscle balance, spinal health, osteoporosis prevention, weight loss, toning, lean mass acquisition, and more.

Speed – short runs, or cardio workouts, with speed intervals, and/or High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) will help boost caloric expenditure in a short period of time and may aid in stimulating growth hormone.

Endurance – allows you to workout for a longer period of time while enjoying the benefits of fat burning and reaching an endorphin high.

There are many more benefits to each training zone. These highlights are just the start.

Go ahead, look at the example routine below that shows 28 exercise days that will balance your body, burn energy, and make you feel ready for warm weather.

For more details about how the exercise suggestions above can be turned into actual workouts, see the Beginner (B), Intermediate/Fit (F), and Advanced/Athlete (A) level suggestions below:

Here are a few general suggestions to help improve your diet during your program:

  • Eat veggies at lunch and dinner – this is so crucial for satiety, nutrition, and training your taste buds to appreciate truly yummy, natural, and healthy foods
  • Don’t skip breakfast – c’mon we’ve heard this one since we were 5!
  • Remember to drink water
  • Limit processed sugars/sweets – if you like sweet treats, I’m not one to tell you never to have them – simply try to plan a time of day in advance for when you will enjoy them. This will help prevent you from going overboard and will allow you to focus on the taste and anticipate the enjoyment
  • Try to limit processed foods by planning meals ahead of time and shopping the perimeter of the grocery store (where the fresh stuff is!)
  • Have a back-up plan – carry nuts, an apple, a protein bar, or any healthy snack to help avoid low blood sugar swings and keep up energy (my friends know that I can be quite the soccer mom – snacks are always on hand!)

As you can see, this isn’t reinventing the wheel. We don’t have to struggle to find the perfect routine or the next fitness fad. We just have to put simple actions into motion so that we can have healthy lifestyles that fill us with joy.

Over 28 days, this routine can help you lose anywhere from 3 – 8 lbs. Not bad considering that the vast majority of these workouts are under an hour, right?! The general weight loss recommendation for women is typically .5 – 1 lbs/week. We’re right on pace with those recommendations, if not pushing them a little bit because I know that women get extra invigorated once the weather turns warm. That said, we’re not going overboard and trying to lose “21 lbs in 21 days.” Yikes, was an organ removed?! We’re aiming for progress that is manageable for the long term. It’s not fun to feel fabulous in June and “junky” again by July, is it?

These weight loss estimates are only based on these workouts, not on the level of intensity you may bring to the table while doing them. The estimates also don’t take into consideration the calories you continue to burn after your workout. Additionally, these estimates assume that you’re eating for weight maintenance. If you eat a little less than your maintenance caloric level, then you can lose a little more. Even 150 calories less a day can be helpful for weight loss and will ensure that you’re not feeling deprived or swinging between binge eating days and starvation.

 Getting Out of a Rut; High-Intensity Interval Training

If you’ve fallen out of the super-determined-and-hitting-the-gym-hard routine, it’s okay! If you’re feeling lackluster about exercise, I get that too. If you’ve decided to become submissive to the powers of winter and are posting pictures online from last summer’s vacation, well…you’re not alone.

There are tons of readymade exercise plans abound so I will spare you a cookie cutter formula. Instead, I would love to direct your attention to a way of approaching exercise: High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This kind of training will boost your energy and allow you to minimize gym time during seasons when you’re just not “feeling it.” Ahem, like the end of February when it’s easiest to pretend you’re a bear in a cave. So cozy. So warm.

HIIT exercise sessions can range from 4-30 minutes and consist of a tough movement followed by moderate activity as a rest. Depending on your fitness, you can do anywhere from 3-10 reps of the tough move before taking your rest. Not bad, right?! There are oodles of benefits that you will reap after some focused effort.

WEEK 4

DAY 22

B – brisk walk/slow jog for 40 min

F – 40 min jog/run

A – 40 min fast run with 30 seconds sprinting every 3-4 minutes (one way to do this is to do it once every new song on your playlist)

DAY 23

B – 40 min lifting upper/lower combos

F – 55 min lifting upper/lower combos

A – 75 min lifting upper/lower combos

DAY 24: REST DAY!

DAY 25

B – brisk walk/slow jog for 40 min

F – 55 min jog/run

A – 65 slow to moderate pace run

DAY 26

B – 40 min upper and core workout

F – 55 min upper and core workout

A – 55 min upper and core workout heavy (aim for weights that fatigue you or cause failure within 8-10 reps)

DAY 27

B – brisk walk/slow jog for 55 min

F – 55 min jog/run

A – 55 min fast run with 30 seconds sprinting every 3-4 minutes (one way to do this is to do it once every new song on your playlist)

DAY 28

B – 30 min HIIT

F – 40 min HIIT

A – 50 min HIIT


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