Whether you want to lose belly fat or bat wings, experts are most likely to suggest one regime. It is a full-body workout. As the name suggests, this routine works your entire body. Like with any other life change, trying out this workout can be challenging and overwhelming, especially for beginners. However, with the correct guidance and tips, it is quite easy to perform a full-body workout 3 times a week.
You can choose to try either a home or gym full-body workout plan. No program is easy, so do not go in with the mindset that you have this in the bag. You might be tempted or even fall off the wagon sooner than you expected.
In this article, we will discuss a practical full-body workout plan that you can perform thrice a week. We will give a sample of both the gym and home routine. Both will guarantee spectacular and quick results if you also incorporate other factors such as good nutrition. Stay tuned to discover how you can stick to such a program and achieve your fitness goals.
Full Body Workout: Should I Try It?
Are you contemplating on whether or not you should start such a routine? Allow us to chip in by stating some solid reasons why you ought to take up such a program. They include (4):
- It may help with weight loss. A full-body workout plan can help with fat loss if you also maintain a calorie deficit and eat healthier.
- It can increase lean muscle mass, especially if it is a strength training full-body workout plan.
- It can reduce your risk of several health conditions and improve your quality of life, especially if it is a cardio plan.
- A flexible full-body routine can enhance your body movement.
- It can also help in strengthening your core and balance, depending on the exercise you incorporate.
Free Full Body Workout Samples
Crafting a full-body workout to perform 3 times a week can be tricky, especially for beginners. Take a look at our home and gym full-body workout sample to get an idea of how to structure your plan. If not, you can also try it out after getting approval from your fitness coach.
Weight lifting is very crucial, especially if coupled with a calorie deficit, as it helps in weight loss and muscle development (9). We have, therefore, compiled a gym circuit that can contribute to fat loss if you also maintain a calorie deficit.
NBC News recommends adults performing strength-training workouts at least two days a week (1). You will be required to perform this full-body workout 3 times a week. With strength training, it is vital to incorporate various exercises, each targeting different muscles.
It is because targeting a particular muscle group for more than a day can lead to overtraining (5). So, you will target various muscle groups for three days using this workout routine.
Key Pointers. Before you start this gym routine, you need to take heed of various aspects. They include:
- First, talk to your doctor and instructor before trying out this program. They have to confirm that you are fit and that the program is safe to perform, respectively.
- Two, listen to your body throughout this regime. If at any point you experience any pain or injury, stop the exercise and seek medical advice.
- Lastly, the following regime is very effective for beginners. If you want to make the exercises more challenging, try increasing either the weights or volume. If not, you can try more advanced variations of the exercises. Again, remember to seek professional advice before you make these changes.
With that in mind, we can now jump into the full-body workout you are expected to perform 3 times a week. As mentioned earlier, each day will target various muscle groups. So, the routine is as follows:
Target: The Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
To help you target these areas, our circuit has compiled the following effective workouts:
The Bench Press
Doing the bench press 3 times a week can help in giving you a chiseled chest. It is because this workout targets your chest muscles, specifically your pecs (9). To perform this exercise, you will need to follow these steps:
- Lie on the back of the gym bench facing the ceiling. The barbell should be above your head and chest.
- Hold on to the bar using both of your hands. They must be slightly more than shoulder-width apart. Push the bar up to release it from the rack. Slowly start bringing it toward your chest. Let it rest a couple of inches above your chest.
- Then slowly start lifting it away from your chest by stretching out your arms.
- You can do either 8 or 12 reps of this workout.
Key Pointers. To reap the most from this exercise, make sure you do the following:
- Keep your back flat and on the bench throughout.
- Exhale when lifting the bar and inhale when lowering it toward your chest.
- Using comfortable weights to avoid any injuries.
The next exercise that helps sculpt and tighten your shoulders for a chiseled chest is the lateral raises. Here is how you do these raises (7):
- Stand upright with your back straight. You should be holding a dumbbell in each of your hands. Let your palms face each other.
- Tighten your core, then slowly start lifting the weights to your sides by stretching out your arms. Stretch them as far as possible or until they are parallel with the floor. In this case, you will form a capital T. Remember to keep your elbows slightly bent during the lift.
- Hold for some seconds before slowly lowering your arms back to the sides.
- You can do three sets of this exercise, each containing 10 reps.
Key Pointers. Lateral raises tend to primarily target the shoulder, which is a very vulnerable joint. Inherently, it increases the risk of injuries. To avoid this, remember to do the following:
- Use comfortable weights.
- Keep your shoulders down when you are lifting your arms.
The last exercise of the day entails the tricep dips. Do only two sets of these, each containing ten reps (5). Here is how you do them:
- Sit on the edge of a flat bench with your back straight.
- With your arms by your side, extend them to grip on the bench. Stretch your legs out and in front of your body, then keep your heels pressed on the floor.
- While lifting on the hands, slide your body forward and away from the bench. It will lower your butt away until your elbows are between 45 and 90 degrees.
- Hold this position for some seconds and then press back up.
Target: The Back and Biceps
For the second day of this weekly plan, you will work on your back and biceps. The best exercise to help with these areas include:
The Standing Cable Curl
The standing cable curl exercise helps in toning your arms and specifically tightening your biceps. To perform these, follow these steps (3):
- Stand upright facing the cable machine with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Hold onto the cable using both hands with your palms facing forward and your arms stretching straight to the floor.
- Do not move your shoulders. Similarly, keep your elbows tight to your body. Then slowly start curling the handle of the machine to the front part of your shoulders. Pause for some seconds and squeeze your biceps.
- Slowly lower the handle to return to the initial stance.
- Do three sets, each with 10 reps.
The Lat Pull-Downs
The last exercise to perform for day two of this full-body gym routine is the lat pull-down. Follow these steps to perform these pull-downs:
- Sit and face the lat pull-down machine. Grasp the bar with a wide grip.
- Retract your shoulder blades and pull the bar down to your upper chest.
- Stay upright and squeeze the lats at the bottom of the movement before slowly returning to the initial stance.
- Perform three sets, each with 10 reps.
Target: The Core and Legs
On the third day of this weekly plan, you will be required to perform the following:
Sit-ups are one of the classic exercises when it comes to strengthening your core. However, you can easily injure your neck muscles when doing these workouts, especially if you do not follow the correct form (10). Here is how to correctly do weighted sit-ups:
- Lock your feet on the decline bench and then lie face up on the bench.
- Place a comfortable weight on your chest, and then use your hands to hold it in place.
- Start to slowly lift your upper body towards your knees by engaging your abdominal muscles.
- Gently return to the starting position.
- Do 3 sets of 20 reps.
Key Pointers. The chances of doing a weighted sit-up wrong are quite high. To avoid this, do the following:
- Start with the basic sit-up. Beginners are advised to first learn the correct form of the basic sit-up before progressing to performing the weighted one.
- Choose a comfortable weight that will allow you to comfortably do all these reps without causing any pain or injury.
The Leg Press
The last exercise of day 3 and the week is the leg press. It ranks among the best exercises for legs and lower body toning. To perform this exercise, do the following (8):
- Sit on the leg press machine and make the necessary adjustments until you are comfortable. For example, try adjusting the seat such that your legs are comfortably bent to 90 degrees when your feet are on the platform.
- After that, sit on the machine with your head and back against the rest. Do not raise your butt at any point but instead keep it flat on the seat. Similarly, keep your feet hip-width apart and against the plate.
- Start to push into the plate, and remember to engage both your core and legs. Your heels must be flat and against the plate throughout.
- Stretch out your legs but avoid locking out your knees.
- Gently return your legs to the starting position. Do 3 sets, each containing 10 repetitions.
You do not need to spend 7 days a week in the gym to see results. Experts acknowledge that strength training twice or thrice a week for 20 or 30 minutes yields results (11). Remember to always start slow, then walk your way up the ladder.
So do not bother if you cannot do all the reps or sets in the first week. With time, you will notice an improvement in your strength, allowing you to lift heavier weights and perform more reps or sets. You will also become healthier and leaner.
You can also get leaner, healthier, and stronger at home by following a full-body workout 3 times a week. The best full-body workout to try 3 times a week must incorporate the best full-body exercises. They include:
Push-ups are a great full-body exercise as they target various muscle groups, including your shoulders, chest, and biceps (12). Below are the steps to help you correctly do a push-up:
- Place your palms on the floor and directly underneath your shoulders. Stretch out your arms and legs back. You will rest on the balls of your feet, and your body will form a straight line.
- Start to slowly lower your body as if you want your nose or chest to touch the floor. Pause in this position for some seconds before engaging your core to push your body back up.
- Do this 10 times to complete a set. Rest in between sets and drink your water as well.
For this exercise, you can choose to either use dumbbells or not. If you do not use any weights, then you will be performing a bodyweight or air squat. It is very useful in sculpting your lower body. To perform these squats, do the following:
- Stand with your feet at least hip-width apart and back straight.
- Crouch down as if you are taking a seat. It will entail bending your knees and pushing your butt backward. As you lower, you can stretch out your arms in front of you. Hold in this position for some seconds.
- Return to the standing position and clench your glutes as you stand.
- Repeat this for at least one minute or until you complete your reps (2).
The next full-body exercise incorporated in this home circuit is the lunge. For this exercise, feel free to use a dumbbell. It is among the best full-body dumbbell workouts to perform 3 times a week. Here is how you do these lunges (6):
- Start in a standing position. Grab the dumbbell in your hands and then stretch out one leg forward and bend it. It must be at the right angle in front of your body.
- Stretch your other leg back, make sure that your knee is slightly above the floor, and the ball of your foot takes the weight.
- Move up and down, and then switch your feet to alternate legs.
- Do this ten times.
The last full-body exercise in this plan is the burpee. It is a great fat-blasting exercise. To perform it, you ought to:
- Stand upright and then drop down into the squatting position.
- Instead of jumping back up, you ought to move into the high plank position. After this, you will be required to do one push-up before returning to the standing position. It is a challenging but very beneficial full-body workout. Beginners can do away with the push-up if it becomes overbearing.
Getting The Most From A Full Body Workout Plan Performed 3 Times A Week
As with any other exercise plan, you will need to do more than just work out for a healthier and leaner body. You will also need to:
- Practice healthy eating. Your body needs food as it is your primary fuel. If you are trying this plan for weight loss, maintain a calorie deficit to allow your body to burn more calories.
- Get proper rest. Your body needs time to recover from the workout. Stick to exercising 3 days a week instead of every other day. Again, make sure you are getting adequate sleep.
- Be more active. Try to be more active even when you are not exercising to allow your body to burn extra fat. For example, instead of using the elevator, take the stairs. Similarly, for short distances, walk instead of taking the bus.
Full body workout plans are excellent as they work multiple muscle groups across your body. Combining this plan with healthy eating and better lifestyle changes can help you get leaner, stronger, and healthier.
Remember to seek professional help when designing your full-body workout plan. You can also try this full-body workout 3 times a week and sculpt your physique as you desire.