The care-free summer workout plan is not: Work, eat, sleep, chill, repeat until Labor Day.
Care-free can mean very different things to different people, but in this case it means to just do what you’ve got to do to get it in. Have fun with it, don’t stress missing workouts or not knowing what to do.
You know what it takes to get fit or stay fit. Keep moving and eat clean. Side note: Read this piece on intuitive eating or this incredible 12-week body transformation, if you’re stuck on the diet stuff.
The care-free summer workout plan is great for anyone—beginner or advanced—because it’s flexible and basic.
Best use for the care-free summer workout plan
Get fit or stay fit without having to think (or stress) so hard about what to do.
Rules of the care-free summer workout plan
There’s one and only one. Commit to doing your best. Do whatever it is you can, where ever you can, any way you can.
The preferred and suggested care-free summer workout plan
Try to get in the gym two to three days per week to lift weights. There are two to pick from below.
Get two cardio sessions in a week: one interval day and one longer day. For intervals, try one of these HIIT workouts. For the longer days, you could run, swim, bike, hike, etc. for 30, 40, or more minutes. (Coming soon: fresh cardio workouts)
This will help maintain a good level of cardiovascular endurance, increase muscular strength, and maintain or improve flexibility and mobility. We recommend 4-6 weeks on this plan. You could continue it longer if you’re still seeing results.
The Full Body Workouts
Option 1: “Summer kickoff full strength circuit”
You could do this workout up to three days per week with a day of rest (or other activities) in between. Complete all of the exercises as a circuit for 5 or more rounds. Depending on your fitness level or how you’re feeling, you could do more or fewer rounds. Keep your rest periods to a minimum so there is an endurance and cardio element to the workout.
Reverse lunge x 5 reps per side with immediate transition to front squat x 10 reps
Bent-over row x 10 reps
Alternating dumbbell press x 10 reps
Bench curl up x 10 reps
You’ll want to supplement this with some daily stretching and a longer duration cardio workout, such as a distance run. Some additional core training could be worked in but watch for any exercise redundancies as there is a core-taxing exercise within the circuit above.
Option 2: “5 rounds of 5 moves for just about everything”
This workout is very similar to the “Summer kickoff full strength circuit’. Same suggestions apply: up to three days per week, move through the exercises quickly for a strength+cardio combo. Do more or fewer rounds depending on your abilities or how you feel.
Complete 5 rounds, quickly but with good form, and keep rest periods to a minimum.
Overhead press x 10 reps
Single-leg deadlift x 10 reps per side
Front squat x 10 reps
Plank row x 5 reps per side
Dumbbell push-up x 10
The Add-on Workouts
You could add these workouts onto the ones above, or use them if you’re traveling or tight on time.
“4 for the core”
A workout like this could be done up to 5 days per week or more if you’re not doing much else. If you’re coupling it up with strength training (like the workouts above) and endurance training, then 2 or 3 days per week with a day of rest in between would work.
Complete 5 rounds of the follow exercises in a circuit:
Hanging knee raise x 10 reps
Bird dog row x 10 reps per side
Static squat hold + plate rotation x 10 reps (5 or 10 per side)
Low lunge/mountain climber x 10 reps per side
Keep rest periods to a minimum.
Can’t do this workout? Then try any of our other 25 ways to give your core a great workout. You’ll find one you like.
“No BS bodyweight conditioning”
You could probably, very easily, do this workout 7 days per week, but it would be most useful as a supplemental workout done a couple times per week. Maybe when traveling or tight on time.
Complete 7-10 rounds as quickly as possible. Keep rest to a minimum for a good cardio challenge.
High knees x 30s
Squat x 30s
Controlled mountain climber x 10 per side