Get Swole Program Update

In January, I shared my current training routine with all of you. For those of who who don’t know, my brother and I have been doing the “Get Swole” routine from BodyBuilding.com

Accidentally wore the same shirt to the gym.

Our goal when we started it was to gain strength (and he wanted to gain size). I liked the layout of the plan, and knew it’d be challenging. Yes, I’m a personal trainer and can make my own plans, but sometimes it’s fun to try someone else’s routine out and see what you like/don’t like.

The program is 4 phases, and we are about to start week 2 of Phase 4 today! It’s a 16 week program and I can’t believe we are almost done. It’s like basically marathon training length ;)

I have really improved my strength in a lot of areas, and I think once we finish Phase 4, we want to re-start the whole program again. I looked through others on the site, but this was my favorite. I will write a full review once we finish the program.

In the mean time, here are my numbers in terms of improvement. I know some of you can do way more, but I’m getting stronger!

  • Bench Press: Started – 45 lbs (just the bar), Current – 60 lbs
  • Back squat: Started – 30 lbs, Current – 80 lbs (!)
  • Dumbbell Incline Press: Started – 15 lbs, Current – 20 lbs
  • Dumbbell Row: Started – 15 lbs, Current – 27.5 lbs
  • Leg Press: Started – 80 lbs, Current – 140 lbs
  • Leg Curl: Started – 30 lbs, Current – 60 lbs
  • *Still working on unassisted pull-ups but getting there!

What I love about the program is that you use a lot of basic exercises that are usually deemed as the “main lifts” such as bench press, squats, rows, pull-ups, etc. Each phase, you change how many reps and sets you do – so you won’t plateau.

Like I said, I’ll go into more detail once I write my full review on the program. Today is Chest/Back day, so we are ready to crush it in the gym! :)

Have you ever tried a program/routine from BodyBuilding.com?

Do you like having set training routine, or you just figure it out daily?


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My Current Training Routine

I have been lifting a lot more recently, and really have increased me strength on several big lifts. I haven’t ran more than 2 miles at a time since the NYC Marathon. I wanted a break from schedule runs, and now run by doing hill sprints 1-2x a week.

During marathon training, I didn’t lift a lot or lift heavy, so it was no surprise that my first day back to lifting I felt pretty weak and was extremely sore the next day.

I have been lifting with my brother, and we are following this 16 week program from BodyBuilding.com. His goal was to gain muscle and mass, and he needed a spotter, so I figured I’d join. My current goal is to gain muscle and strength.

The first day we lifted was tough! I used to be way stronger but was struggling to bench press just the bar (45 lbs). In 4 weeks (“Phase 1″), however, I increased my strength in all the lifts! Here are some examples:

The program is 4 phases of 4 weeks. Currently we are in Phase 2 which is Pyramid Training. We start an exercise at 20-15 reps, then decrease reps while increasing weight. It is certainly challenging!

Here is how our week is broken up:

  • Monday- Chest & Back
  • Tuesday- Legs
  • Wednesday- Off
  • Thursday- Shoulders
  • Friday- Full body HIIT/strength
  • Saturday- HIIT/Hill sprints
  • Sunday- Off

My mom started the program 3 weeks ago and has also seen similar results. I’m really liking it so far, and like to do muscle group splits as opposed to full-body. It’s a great way to lift heavy multiple days in a row but give other muscles a break. I love going to the gym each week and increasing the weight in order to challenge myself.

I plan to finish out the program, and then see what my running goals are. For now, I’d like to focus on getting stronger and leaner. I just needed a mental and physical break from a running training plan…I’m sure you’ve all been there! I’ll keep you posted on results after 16 weeks :)

Do you follow a lifting plan/routine?

Are you able to lift regularly while also marathon training?


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How My Own Training Is Going

Currently, I am laying in my bed, procrastinating working on a paper that is due on Tuesday. I’m also pretty beat from my strength training workout today!

I typically lift 3 times a week, and just started a new program on Monday. For the next 3 weeks, I will be doing total body workouts that are in the 8-10 rep range. In the previous cycle, I was doing 12-15 reps (which is killer…try doing 15 reps of step-ups!).

Here are the exercises I did today:


I did 3 sets of everything, for 10 reps. Missing are the ab exercises I did. My new favorite (well it was always my favorite but I just started doing them again) are TRX pikes.

I also got to rock my new spandex today. I got these for 5 bucks at Old Navy! The material is just as soft as any Nike spandex I own. I highly recommend you check out Old Navy’s fitness gear.


This week I also got back to a regular running schedule. I started running again 2 weeks ago but only a few miles a week. I was sick for about a week so that hindered things. But now I am ready to delve in to half marathon training! I found one in April in Ocean City, Maryland which looks great. I haven’t done a half marathon since 2011! My goal is to finish in 2:00. Sub-2 would also be awesome.

I think if I can stay consistent with lifting, running and most importantly core work which I always tend to neglect, I can become a faster runner this year. And with the help of my running coach Marc of course! I also will be co-teaching a half-marathon training class starting Jan. 29, and there are some faster runners in there, so I hope to get my body used to running a little bit faster =)

What are your fitness goals in the next few months? Anyone else training for a spring half marathon?