The Workout Plan AJ Fitness is Using to Get Stronger Every Day


By Team Cellucor


By: Andrew Jones

This is borrowed time. If I am going to be in the gym, I vow to make it count. 

The most humbling moment in my life happened when I took my first walk after my heart transplant. I put emphasis on the word ‘walk’ because that was all I could do with the help of a couple of nurses and a cart to lean on.

I was tired. I was weak. But I realized the gravity of the gift I had been given. This is my new lease on life.

Every day, I would take steps until I could walk on my own. I then attended cardiac rehab where I would be hooked up to a wireless heart monitor as I walked on a treadmill. Walking led to cycling then to jogging and eventually, I was headed to the gym for my first workout with my new heart.

You would usually hear the phrase “slowly but surely” to describe progress. In the case of my recovery, my results came quickly and unexpectedly. Although I was in the gym, I was still limited by the precautions I needed to take to make sure I didn’t put the new heart at risk. I had to rebuild my physique, taking what I learned in the past 6 years of working out and altering it to fit this new heart. 

 

Once I was able to lift comfortably and safely, I initiated my “master plan”. My overall goal is to become as athletic as possible. Strength, speed, agility, endurance in as many ways as you can think possible. 

But I have to walk before I run. This first phase of my master plan is to rebuild my strength and muscle. If that's your plan too, follow my journey alongside me and share your progress! Stay tuned for more workouts and motivation.  

My Workout - Phase 1- Build Strength and Muscle

DAY 1: LEGS 

WARM UP:

Cycle with low resistance 10 minutes

Foam roll, hip stretches, light-weight leg extensions/curls

  • Standing machine calf raises 3 sets 15-20 reps
  • Seated raises 3x8
  • Barbell lunges 2x10 per side
  • Squats 5x5 + 2 burnout sets light-moderate weight
  • Leg Extensions 4x10 + 2 super heavy sets (4 reps max) 
  • Superset hip adductor and abductor 2x15
  • End with 10 minutes light cardio (treadmill, bike, cross trainer, stair-stepper) and stretch

DAY 2: CHEST AND BACK

WARM UP:

Cycle/Walk with 2-3% incline/low resistance 10 minutes

Foam roll, warm-up shoulders with resistance band

Super-set push-ups and pull ups/lat pull-down 2x15

  • Bodyweight dips 2x10-15
  • Single arm dumbbell row 2x15 per side
  • Barbell bench press 5x5 + 2 burnout sets light-moderate weight
  • Lat pull-down 3x8 moderately heavy
  • Dumbbell flys 2x12 
  • Pull-ups until failure
  • Push-ups until failure

DAY 3: CORE AND CARDIO

10-12 minute jog 1-2% incline

10 minutes cycling low resistance

  • Hanging leg raises 2x10-20 (added weight optional)
  • Weighted cable torso twists (like swinging a baseball bat; hits serratus and obliques) 2x12-20
  • Swiss ball crunches 2x30
  • 1-minute planks x2

Stretch

DAY 4: LEGS

WARM UP:

Cycle with low resistance 10 minutes

Foam roll, hip stretches, light-weight leg extensions/curls

  • Straight leg deadlifts 3x10 (light)
  • Conventional deadlift 5x5
  • Laying leg curls 3x12
  • Wide stance box squats 2x15
  • Standing machine calf raises 3 sets 15-20 reps
  • Seated raises 2x10
  • End with 10 minutes light cardio (treadmill, bike, stair-stepper) and stretch

DAY 5: SHOULDERS AND ARMS

WARM UP:

Cycle/Walk with 2-3% incline/low resistance 10 minutes

Foam roll, warm-up shoulders with resistance band

Super-set push-ups and pull ups/lat pull-down 2x15

  • Dumbbell flys 3x12
  • Barbell Up-Right rows 2x10
  • Barbell military or military seated shoulder press 5x5 +1 burnout set light-moderate weight
  • Bent-over shoulder flys 2x12
  • Super set cable triceps extension/bicep curl 3x15
  • Hammer curls 2x20
  • French press 2x20
  • Bodyweight dips 2x to failure

                Stretch

                About Andrew

                Andrew Jones (AJ) is a fitness model, heart transplant survivor, founder of Hearts at Large and inspiration to those who need that extra boost of motivation to overcome obstacles and reach their goals. Follow AJ's journey on Instagram (@FitnesswithAJ).



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