A Fit Summer: 4-Week Fitness Challenge (Week 2)

Congratulations on completing Week 1 of summer bootcamp! How did you do? You might be a little (or a lot) sore, but worry not. Your body is very good at adapting to new stimuli, and as you start making healthier nutrition and fitness choices, you’ll become a self-healing machine. So grab an ice pack, drink lots of water, pop an ibuprofen, and let’s get this week started!

Download Week 2 Packet

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Week 2 Fitness Plan

Demonstrations of all the strength circuit moves can be found in our exercise videos hub on Anytime Health.

Monday – strength training circuit

2-3 sets of each (depending on fitness level)

  • Warm Up – 20 minutes brisk walking/elliptical
  • Core – reverse bridge (30-45 seconds), pick pockets (30 reps), oblique crunches (25, each side), floor crunches (25 reps)
  • Legs – glute push (20 reps, each side), side lunges (20 reps, each side), one legged squats (20 reps, each side), lying hip abduction (20 reps, each side)
  • Cool Down – 15 to 20 minutes walking/elliptical
  • Stretch – trunk stretch (side to side), trunk oblique stretch, hip stretch, hamstring stretch

Tuesday – Cardio

45-60 minutes Pilates, Yoga Sculpt, or elliptical/treadmill (if no classes are available).

Wednesday – Strength Training Circuit

2-3 sets of each (depending on fitness level)

  • Warm up – 20 minutes brisk walking/biking
  • Core – vertical knee raises (20 reps), back extensions (20 reps), medicine ball crunches (20 reps), single leg V-ups (20 reps, each side)
  • Biceps – cable biceps curls (15 reps, moderate weight), high pulley biceps curls, (15 reps moderate weight)
  • Triceps – overhead triceps extensions (15 reps, moderate weight), single arm reverse pushdowns (15 reps each side, moderate weight)
  • Shoulders – low pulley front shoulder raises (15 reps, moderate weight), cable rear shoulder fly (standing, 15 reps, moderate weight)
  • Cool down – 15 to 20 minutes walking/elliptical
  • Stretch – forearm stretch, triceps stretch, shoulder stretch

Thursday – Cardio

45-60 minutes Yoga Sculpt, Pilates, Kickboxing class (permitting), or Treadmill (3%-5% incline)

Friday – Relaxation

Weather permitting, walk for 30-60 minutes outside today. That’s right. Get out of the gym. The caveat: don’t bring your phone or iPod with you. Bring a watch if you must keep track of time.

Saturday – Strength Training Circuit

2-3 sets of each (depending on fitness level)

  • Warm up – 20 minutes elliptical or recumbent bike
  • Core – stability ball crunches (20 reps), stability ball back extensions (20 reps), stability ball side bends (20 reps, each side), cable axe chop (15 reps each side, moderate weight)
  • Chest – cable crossovers (15 reps, moderate weight), stability ball push-ups (20 reps) * Back – cable high row (15 reps, moderate weight), straight arm lat pulldowns (15 reps, light weight, one foot slightly off ground)
  • Cool down – 15 to 20 minutes walking/elliptical
  • Stretch – cat stretch, chest stretch

Sunday – Rest

30 minutes foam rolling and stretching

Week 2 Fitness Challenge: The Core

This week we address perhaps the most important musculoskeletal area of your body – the core. Your core (abs, hips, pelvis, lower and mid-back) is your center of gravity, so it’s important to make sure it’s strong and stable.

Similar to Week 1, we’ll start with a test. Assume the frontal plank pose, and have a partner record how long you can hold it. Repeat this with a side plank on each side. Make sure to record your times in the week 2 packet! During Week 4, you’ll do this exercise again to see how you’ve improved.

One more thing — rather than hitting only the cardio machines this week, try to incorporate group classes or Fitness On Request (available at many Anytime Fitness locations) into your cardio routine, if possible.

Week 2 Nutrition Challenge

Drink up! (Water, that is). Sure, you’ve heard this a million times before, but that’s because it’s super important. Our bodies are made up of roughly 60% water. Why so much? Water helps regulate body temperature, helps to cushion your joints, protect your spinal cord and nerves, cleanse toxins, regulate hormones, suppress appetite, gives you nicer skin and hair, prevents fatigue, and helps boost your immune system, among many other things.

The Task: Drink More Water

This week, focus on your water intake. The “eight cups a day” adage isn’t too far off. Generally speaking, eight cups of water daily should be the very minimum you’re taking in. Start there, but you should calculate your ideal water intake based on your age, sex, activity level, and other factors.

Week 2 Mind Challenge

Positive affirmations can get a bad rap for being mildly cheesy (right, Brad Taylor). But you know what? They work. Just as we’re conditioned to believe the negative things we’re told in life – be it by the media, family, or that tall red-headed kid who sat behind you in social studies in the fifth grade (hypothetically) – we can re-write the negative dialogue in our minds by practicing positive sayings.

The Task: Give Yourself a Positive Affirmation

This week, every time you start thinking something negative about yourself, take a step back and think about something positive. For example, I have always had a lot of spider veins on my legs. Seriously. It’s like a road map of the Chicago metro. Are they my favorite thing in the world? No. But instead of seeing them as a flaw, I remember that I got them from my mom, and her mom (and her mom). Every single one of us were/are very hard-working women who spent a great deal of time doing manual labor, and those little marks remind me that I’m strong, and I can carry 100 pound bails of hay around like a boss.

Remember to share your journey with the Fit Summer Challenge on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Use the hashtag #AFitSummer

Let’s chat: What was most challenging during week 1 of #AFitSummer?

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Debbie spends her time at the Anytime Fitness corporate office writing and designing web content for the brand’s fabulous franchisees and staff. She has a B.S. in Dietetics, has been NASM certified in personal training, and specializes in weight loss. Her outlook on health and wellness is driven by her own 120-pound weight loss: she is a realist who doesn’t believe in diets, believes strongly in chocolate, and maintaining a healthy, sustainable balance in life. She takes a passionate interest in mental health, positive body image, and self-love. She’s an avid creator of music and mother of cats. She also can’t keep plants alive.