Get Shredded for Summer With This 4-Week Plan
The advent of the summer season (hopefully) means that warmer weather is on the way, so your mind is probably starting to drift to the beach, park, or whichever shirt-optional destination you love most (bonus points if it’s just grilling in your yard).
There’s no need to stress about getting totally ripped up for your time on the sand—but if you want to get into the best shape possible to be able to enjoy your outdoor adventures to the fullest, you can put a few short weeks of work in at the gym and see results. With just a little pain now, you’ll see plenty of muscle gains, which will help you to have more confidence to do whatever you want in the summer season.
Take it from someone like Andy Speer, C.S.C.S., creator of the Anarchy Abs workout. The trainer knows how to get his body in shape on demand, since he’s constantly pushing his body to its fullest aesthetic potential for his work.
Along with his experience as a personal trainer—he won the Men’s Health Next Top Trainer title in 2014—and Peloton Tread coach, Speer has an extensive background as a fitness model. If anyone knows how to get his body looking its best, it’s Speer.
Now that summer’s on the horizon, it’s time to get prepped for those sunny days at the beach. Speer drew from his experience preparing for fitness shoots to design this four-week program, so the workout is tailored for the best aesthetic results. You’ll rely on basic strength training principles for the routine, using full body exercises for the workout so you’ll have a fully-formed beach bod by the time the 4 weeks are through.
If you’re up for it, get ready to go hard. In this program, be sure to choose a weight that will challenge you—but don’t go too heavy. Nothing would put a damper on your summer plans quicker than a gym injury from biting off more than you can chew.
Each week in the program will bring tougher workouts, but you’ll love the big payoff: A stronger, more ripped body this summer.
The Body Shop Beach Cut Workout
Use these drills to prime your body for each workout session.
1. Downward Dog to Spider Lunge
Start in pushup position, feet shoulder-width apart. Keeping your legs straight, raise your butt; try to stay aligned from torso to arms. Hold. Return to pushup position. Without moving your left leg, bring your right foot outside your right hand. Return to the start; repeat the sequence on the other side. That’s 1 rep; do 2 sets of 10.
2. Superman to Floor Angel
Lie facedown on the floor with your arms extended. Simultaneously tighten your glutes, raise your legs, and tighten your back muscles as you raise your arms and upper chest. This is the start. Maintaining this position, fan your arms backward. Try to touch your hands together on your back. Return to the starting position. That’s 1 rep; do 2 sets of 10.
3. Child’s Pose to Reach and Rotate
Kneel with your big toes touching. Lean your torso forward, reaching your hands out on the floor. This is the starting position. Lift your right hand. Thread your right arm under your left armpit. Return to the start. That’s 1 rep; do 2 sets of 10 per side.
4. Speed Jacks
Stand with your arms at your sides, feet together. Start doing jumping jacks, but instead of maintaining a relaxed pace, move your arms and feet as fast as you possibly can. Keep at it for 30 seconds; then rest for 30 seconds. Work through 2 rounds.
DAY 1 PAIRED SETS
1 DB snatch + 3 Pushup, 2 DB front squat + 4 Inverted row, 5 Burpee
Do alternating 30-second intervals of moves 1 and 3 for the time listed below. Rest 3 minutes. Do 2 and 4 the same way. Finish up with a 4-minute Tabata (work for 20 seconds, rest 10) of move 5.
DAY 2 PAIRED SETS
6 Chinup + 7 Broad jump, 8 Push press + 9 Jump lunge, 10 Lateral shuffle
Do alternating 30-second intervals of moves 6 and 7 for the time listed below. Rest 3 minutes. Do 8 and 9 the same way. Finish up with a 4-minute Tabata (work for 20 seconds, rest 10) of move 10.
PAIRED SET WORKOUTS
DAY 3 REST/CARDIO
DAY 4 INTERVALS
1 DB snatch + 3 Pushup + 2 DB front squat + 4 Inverted row, 5 Burpee
Do moves 1, 3, 2, and 4 in that order. Spend 6 straight minutes on each, following the rest/reps guide below. Rest 2 minutes between moves. Finish up with a 4-minute Tabata of move 5.
DAY 5 INTERVALS
6 Chinup + 7 Broad jump + 8 Push press + 9 Jump lunge, 10 Lateral shuffle
Do moves 6, 7, 8, and 9 in order. Spend 6 straight minutes on each, following the rest/reps guide below. Rest 2 minutes between moves. Finish up with a 4-minute Tabata of move 10.
DAY 6 REST/CARDIO
DAY 7 REST/CARDIO
1. Dumbbell Snatch
Hold a dumbbell in your right hand at mid-shin level with your knees bent and a slight hinge in your hips. Pull the weight up as you explosively straighten your knees and hips. (If you stand on your tiptoes, that’s okay.) As the weight reaches shoulder height, extend your right arm straight up. That’s 1 rep. Start with your right arm on the first set; alternate between arms every set after that.
2. Dumbbell Front Squat
Stand with dumbbells against the meatiest parts of your shoulders. Bend at your knees, lowering your torso until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Return to standing. That’s 1 rep.
Assume a pushup position, your hands slightly beyond shoulder width, feet together, and core tight. Bend at your elbows to lower your torso an inch from the floor; then push back up. At all times, keep your forearms perpendicular to the floor and your core as tight as possible. That’s 1 rep.
4. Inverted row
Hang a suspension trainer from a pullup bar so its handles are about waist-high. Lie under it, your chest aligned with the handles and legs straight. Grab the handles using a neutral grip, and pull your torso to the handles. Lower your torso. That’s 1 rep. (Too hard? Set the handles slightly higher and assume a position that’s closer to standing.)
Start in a standing position. Hinge at your hips, set your hands on the floor, kick your feet back in a wide stance, and lower your chest to the floor. Get up as quickly as you can by kicking your feet forward and standing. Finish by jumping straight up. That’s 1 rep.
Hang from a bar using an underhand, shoulder-width grip. Squeeze your shoulder blades, tighten your core, and pull your chest to the bar (or as close to it as you can get). Slowly lower yourself back to hanging, maintaining slight tension in your middle back. That’s 1 rep.
7. Broad Jump
Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent. Hinge at your hips, bend more deeply with your knees, and throw your arms backward. Now throw your arms forward and take a big leap. Land with your feet still apart. Your knees should be slightly bent to cushion your landing. Then backpedal to the starting line. That’s 1 rep.
8. Push Press
Stand holding dumbbells at your shoulders, your feet about shoulder-width apart. Your elbows should be bent and palms facing each other. Keeping your core tight, bend your knees slightly; then explosively straighten them. Use the momentum to press the dumbbells over your shoulders until your arms are straight. Don’t arch your back as you do this. Lower the weights back to your shoulders. That’s 1 rep.
9. Jump Lunge
Assume a staggered stance, your left foot forward. Bend both knees and lower your torso until your left thigh is parallel to the floor and your right shin is close to the floor. Explosively stand back up. As you do this, jump and shift your feet so your right foot lands in front of your left. That’s 1 rep. When you land, you should already be in position for the next rep.
10. Lateral Shuffle
Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart, knees bent. Quickly shuffle 10 steps to the right and then 10 steps to the left. Try to keep your chest up, and don’t let your feet cross in front of each other as you do this. Think of staying low to the ground. (Short on space? Take fewer steps to each side; just make sure you’re shuffling the entire time.)
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