It’s summer time and the days are long, filled with sunshine and the nights are short. Summer time means warm weather, long days and lots of outside activity to move your body in all various different ways and combinations. With summertime here, how many of you are still spending hours and hours in the gym? When you are in the gym and see the sunshine outside don’t you just want to get out there and play? I believe our bodies are meant to train for the different seasons with the summer being mainly outside and the winter mainly inside.
I feel that our summertime workouts should be like how your body should be right now, light, quick, fast, explosive and energetic. Keep your workouts short, fast and intense and I believe we will all feel so much better. With the warmer weather outside, we should ALL be taking advantage of it by incorporating as much outside activity as we can. Now is the greatest time to go on hikes, mountain bike, play golf, go swimming, kayak, beach volleyball and do whatever it is you like to do outside. We should not be grinding it out in the gym hour after hour, lifting heavy, getting sore and moving slow. I change my workouts in the summer and do a lot more fast, explosive, body weight exercises with some sprinting and jump rope. If and whenever I can go outside I take full advantage my environment has to offer me. I believe now is the time where our bodies should be the most active, fit and mobile. We should not be hampered down by lifting heavy and having slow, lethargic, sore muscles. Besides, all of that hard work we have done all year long should have paid off by now and we should be loud and proud to take our shirts off, strut our stuff and have some fun. Summertime is also a wonderful time to eat a little less, feel a little bit lighter and due away with the big heavy hearty meals. Make your meals, simple, fresh, and full of natural flavors and enjoy all of the seasonal fruits the summer has to offer especially the berries and avocados.
When fall approaches, we should slowly start to add more resistant weight bearing exercises while slowly fading out the cardio work. During winter time, with the days being so short, the nights being very long and the weather being frigidly cold in most areas, I believe that’s the time to really hit it hard with the weight training. Winter time is where you can really get some great muscle strength and size gains. It is a lot easier to lift heavier and sleep longer with the long nights which gives your muscles a lot more time to rest, regenerate and repair. Generally we eat a little hearty during the winter time, with big heavy meals and hearty vegetables in season like squashes which is totally fine for strength gains. I sometimes like to pick a body part a day like chest on Monday, back on Tuesday and legs on Wednesday and just do heavy high volume work to really break down the muscle. An example would be 5 to 8 sets of 5 to 10 reps of back squats going as heavy as you can each set and then doing the same with a deadlift or split squat. This is a great way to see some great results in strength gain and size. I would highly recommend keeping a lifting journal of the lifts and weights you do and you will be impressed with the improvement from start to finish. You have to be consistent and push yourself and the results will show.
Once it starts warming up again in the spring, slowly starting adding some cardio/sprint intervals into your lifting routine and change your sets to 3 and your reps to 8 to 12. You want to keep your mass and size and slowly start to burn off the excess winter weight. This is a familiar body building routine to where they bulk up as much as they can and then slim down achieve that cut up look.
Regardless of what you choose to do for your workout routine, it is always great to mix it up every 8 to 10 weeks anways. Your body is the greatest adapter and always needs to be challenged with new stimuli, load, and different movement patterns. So, if you have been performing the same routine for quite some time now, it is time to mix it up.
Get out there, get some sun and have some fun. Time to take my daughter to the beach.