T Nation

Fat Loss Plan for My Sister

“You can’t lose weight by lifting only cardio”

that’s what my sister told me ( I know this is not true). Now I’m trying to design a work out plan for her to lose weight. I don’t want to get her to do any complicated compound movement like deadlifts.

So far I’m thinking of
bench press 5x5
Pull down 3x8
Shoulder press 3x8
squat 3x8
leg curl 3x8
tricep/bicep superset 2x10
hiit for 15 minutes

rest periods of 60 seconds between each set
and changing the 5x5 movement between (bp, pull down, squat and shoulder press each work out)

I don’t know very much about designing programs so I just gave it a shot and i want to see what you guys think.

1.) Diet is the most important thing when it comes to fat loss

2.) How much weight training experience does she have?

3.) Cardio IS very important for fat loss. Just lifting is usually not going to cut it.

We need more information.

Having a healthy, balanced nutrition plan is critical! It also has to be calorie restrictive. Many small meals throughout the day. This will jack up the metabolism.

Cardio is important. Keep it.

Try a thermogenic, like HOT-ROX or HRX.

I know that the diet is just as important as the training but what would be a good work out scheudle to lose weight?

[quote]colin1168 wrote:
I know that the diet is just as important as the training but what would be a good work out scheudle to lose weight?

There will be people that tell you heavy weight, low reps is the way to go.

Others will tell you that high reps, low weight is the way to go.

Try a full body routine, 3x a week with the HIIT 2x a week on off days. Try the high rep low weight for three weeks, then try the low reps high weight for three weeks. Select the one that gets better results.

As she gets comfortable, up the weight days to 4x week and HIIT 3x week.

Diet #1

Resistance training #2

cardio #3 and limited you can always add more as you go. Heck with the right diet she may not need any cardio


I would NOT, repeat NOT recommend a low rep, heavy weight thing for a newbie to lifting. At this stage you should concentrate on getting her to lift properly, and be able to feel what she’s working. Later you can and should do periods of low rep training, but not before she knows how to lift properly and feel the proper muscles working.

Besides, a newb to lifting will get good results from any well balanced training program, heavy weights or not. It’s the experienced guys who should worry about that stuff.

I would recommend 10-12 reps, reaching failure on the last set. Most women who “lift” don’t do it with any effort. I’m talking about true failure and true 10-12 rep maxes, not sissy weights that stop at 12 reps just because that what was written when you could go for another 10 reps.

Cardio is important, just do it right. 1-2 HIIT sessions (start at 1/week), and 1-2 low intensity cardio. Obviously diet is #1 priority–make sure she gets enough protein with each feeding though. That has a big impact on metabolism. Second, make sure she ONLY drops as many calories as is required to see weekly weight loss.

She needs to be able to drop more when it stalls–if you go too low to fast, you got nowhere to progress, and you’ll end up rebounding to what you were.

Bottom end calorie requirements anyone?

My default safety cut-off is floating around 1300-1400 for a woman. That’s the point where you need to start gradually upping the cals and take a break from fat loss for 4-8 weeks or so (AFTER you ramp the calories back up) Other people may have different opinions on that.

Ok, you need another back movement in there. You have bench- horz. push. shoulder press–vert. push. Pulldown–crappy vert. pull. You need a horizontal pulling motion. And it would be better if you would do assisted chins instead of pulldowns.

IMHO, 8 reps is fine for now, but not any lower. As I said before, I believe you should get her acclimated to lifting gradually, while still pushing her to do her best and not “mail it in”. Switching the lower rep exercise every session is a good idea. That way you’'ll avoid always letting one exercise stay at the end of the training session. Keep that idea, just use 8 reps instead of 5-6 for now.

assisted chins
shoulder press
dl --I know, you didn’t want it, but it’s too good to leave.

You can use any variation of the above exercises (zerchers, dumbells, barbells, incline, etc) to keep her from getting bored if that’s an issue, but make sure you do one exercise of each plane of motion.

If your going to be there with her and have some experience, I say bring on some DL, Squats, Lunges, etc. No reason to try to pull some heavy weight, but if your trying to lose fat, the big compound movements are the only way to go IMO. The amount of cals burnt during leg curls wont come close to DL even if your going real light and just getting form IMO.

So I think leaving out big compound movements are only going to hurt the progress. And keep it 8-12 rep sets to start.

Besides there is something sexy as hell about a good looking lady deadlifting, I always encourage girls to squat and deadlift.

Haha not going to lie this is a new one. I’ve seen help my: girlfriend/wife/hell even parents but sister is a new one (to me anyway).

1)The big three: Bench, Squat, DL
-They burn more cals
2) Cardio: 1min all out, 30secs active rest, repeat
-Do that on a rowing machine or a treadmill on an incline. Like the lifts it burns more cals.

I really question why you want to avoid “complicated” compound exercises like the deadlift, but then include squats as an exercise. Squats are a lot more “complicated” than deadlifts. If someone has the coordination to squat than they can also deadlift. In my opinion the best 4 lifts to include are: deadlift, squat, chinups/pullups, and dips. If someone is not strong enough to do chinup and dips one could use rows and bench presses.

Deadlifts and squats form the foundation for strong legs (and a strong body). Including an upper body push (dip or bench) and upper body pull (chinup/pullup or row) completes the package.