Even the most hardcore lifters can fall victim to the time-sucking demands of the holiday season—parties, family functions, and travel—but that doesn’t mean your physique has to suffer. Instead of cranking out six hard workouts per week, allow yourself some seasonal leeway by cutting it to four. By implementing a program with a strong focus on compound movements you’ll make up for the lost days, and that’s what this month’s program is about: gaining muscle when time allows without missing out on the things that really matter.

HOW IT WORKS

You’ll train four days per week, but your two toughest, longest workouts will be on the days you can fit them in. Your hardest training should come when you’re rested, ready, and have the most free time around your busy holiday schedule. The quicker, lighter routines will easily fit into a busy day. You can do cardio on your more free days, or simply take time off if time is tight. To customize the program even further, we’ve included alternate exercises to choose from depending on how you feel. Get ready to make gains at the speed of Santa’s sleigh.

DIRECTIONS

The following are sample workouts. You can substitute a different move for any exercise with an asterisk (*) next to it. See the lists of exercise options below.

YOUR OPTIONS 

OLYMPIC LIFTS

HAMSTRINGS EXERCISES

  • Sumo-stance Leg Press
  • Glute-ham Raise
  • Cable Pull-through
  • Suspended Leg Curl

VERTICAL BACK EXERCISES

  • Lat Pulldown 
  • Chinup
  • Pullup
  • Shrug

SINGLE-LEG EXERCISES

ABS EXERCISES

  • Weighted Situp
  • Side Bend (weighted exercise)
  • Cable Ab Pulldown (weighted exercise)
  • Plank
  • Side Plank
  • Ab Wheel Rollout