28 Day Workout Challenge to Start Exercising Again

Before starting this 28 day workout challenge, you should remember that the secret to starting exercising again after a long break is dedication, consistency, and setting realistic expectations. Whenever you start a new workout challenge, you will need to be true to yourself, because whatever you do during this period will help you get back into working out after a long break.

28 Day Workout Challenge to Start Exercising Again

But does this 28 day workout challenge really work?

You are absolutely right to question whether this free 28 day workout challenge actually works, and you are not alone.

I often see people asking in the comments section of different workout plans if the workout actually works. My answer to this question is always the same – it works if you do the work.

Most 28 or 30-day fitness challenges are designed to make you fail because they require too much commitment over a short time, and when you are trying to regain fitness, you need to take a slower pace.

You should avoid fitness challenges and workouts requiring you to make drastic diet changes or perform intense exercise daily.

Let’s be honest, doing 195 squats a day as part of a 30-day squat challenge is not only hard to maintain but also may lead to burnout, and that will make you fall off again real fast.

How this 28-day workout challenge will help you get back into working out after a long break

28 day workout challenge

As I said in the opening sentence of this article, consistency, dedication, and realistic expectations are three things that will help you get back to exercising and keep going. Let’s get into what you should do to start exercising again.

More fitness challenges like this:

How to Set Achievable Weight Loss and Fitness Goals

How to Set Achievable Weight Loss and Fitness Goals

Here’s the thing. Weight gain doesn’t happen overnight- it takes weeks and sometimes months of unhealthy eating habits and not exercising enough to gain weight. Just as gaining weight takes time, so does losing weight.

If you have been out of the gym for a long time, chances are that you may have gained some weight. Therefore, if your goal is to lose weight as you get back, your goal should be realistic.

Losing weight the healthy way takes time. Expecting to lose 10 pounds in 28 days is a guaranteed way of setting yourself up for failure.

Similarly, if your goal is to regain fitness, you should be realistic by not expecting to start doing 30 minutes of non-stop running within the first two weeks.

This is how you should go about setting realistic goals when getting back into exercising regularly.

1. Set your big-picture goal

To get it right from the beginning, you need to set a big-picture goal. This is an overall goal, which in your case might be that you want to lose 40 pounds or run your first 10k, or marathon, or whatever it is you want to achieve by getting back into a workout routine.

Set your big-picture goal

2. Break down your overall goal into smaller goals

Next, you should break that big-picture goal into smaller achievable goals. Research shows that realistically, you should aim to lose 5-10% of your starting weight within the first six months [1].

However, if you are female and following a low-calorie diet, eating between 1200-1500 calories a day, reasonable weight loss will be between 1.1lb- 4.4 lbs a month.

If the big-picture goal is to lose 40 pounds, the smaller and attainable goal should be set at losing between 3 pounds a month, 18 pounds after six months, and 36 pounds within the first year.

Break down your overall goal into smaller goals

3. Set a realistic weight loss timeline

Setting a weight loss timeline will help you stay motivated and on track. You will also be able to measure whether you achieved your goals.

A realistic timeline will help you determine when exactly you want to start working out consistently and when you want to reach your goal.

4. Make your weight loss or fitness goal measurable

Having a timeline for your fitness goals and saying that you want to run 10k is not enough. Your goal should be measurable to help you know if you are moving in the right direction.

For example, if you aim to run your first 10k in 6 months, you can make this measurable by setting a specific deadline by which you can measure progress.

You can break the 10k goal into parts and aim to run 5k nonstop within two months. If you achieve the 5k goal within the deadline, your next stop will be running 7k in the following month and hit your 10k target within the 6-month deadline.

Make your weight loss or fitness goal measurable

5. Create an action plan to help you succeed

After deciding what you want to achieve and how you will measure it, you should create an action plan to help you succeed as you get back into working out.

Your action plan should specify steps that you will take to reach your big-picture goal. You should outline how many workouts you’ll be doing per week, the types of exercises, and what you will be eating.

This is where the 28-day workout challenge comes in. It is tailored with you in mind. It starts off easy so that you can ease back after the break that you’ve had from exercising.

As for the meal plan, you can make your own using these 32 foods for weight loss, depending on your goals or you can follow this 30-day meal plan for weight loss.

28-Day Workout Challenge for Beginners

FREE 28 day workout challenge for beginners

This 28-day workout challenge for beginners or anyone getting back into working out is perfect because it doesn’t require advanced equipment and can easily be done from home.

You should aim for 3-4 days of active exercise each week during the 28-day challenge. As you progress with the exercise routine, you can gradually increase the number of active days and add more challenging exercises and variations.

Sets and reps for beginners

If you are a beginner joining this fitness challenge, you’ll come across the terms sets and repetitions (reps) multiple times.

A rep is one complete performance of an exercise. For example, a rep will be 10 lunges performed without taking a break.

On the other hand, a set is a bunch of repetitions done back-to-back during exercise. Performing 10 reps of lunges in one go is an example of a set.

Try to rest for 45 seconds between each repetition of each exercise and 1 minute between each set of exercises.

Week 1 of the 28-day weight loss challenge

During the first week of your 28-day weight loss challenge, you’ll focus on basic exercises like squats, planks, and bicep curls, using very light to no weights.

The exercises in week one will help you build strength, and improve your muscle tone and fitness levels.

the 28 day weight loss challenge

Day 1                                 Sets    Reps

  • Running in place       2          30 sec
  • Lunges                         2          10
  • Glute bridges              2          10
  • Running in place       2          30 sec
  • Squats                          2          10

Day 2

  • 30-minute walk
  • Planks                          2          30 sec
  • Crunches                     2          10
  • Flutter kicks               2          10
  • Bicycle crunch           2          10

Day 3

  • Jumping Jacks           2          15
  • Push-ups                     2          10
  • Bicep curls                  2          10
  • Triceps extensions    2          10
  • Front raises                2          10
  • Jumping Jacks           1           15
  • Military press             2          8

Day 4

Rest

Day 5

30-minute walk

Day 6

  • Running in place       2          30 secs
  • Lunges                         2          10
  • Glute bridges             2          10
  • Running in place      2          30 sec
  • Squats                         2          10

Day 7

Rest

28 day workout challenge day week 1

Week 2 of the 28-day fitness challenge

Well done on completing the first week!

During Week 2 of the fitness challenge, the reps and sets will increase slightly, and you’ll get an extra day of exercise and one less day of rest. You can use the same light weights you used in the first week.

However, if the workouts start feeling too easy, you can increase the intensity by increasing the weights. Just remember not to go up too high as you bump up the weights because this might compromise your form or increase the risk of injury.

Day 8                          Sets    Reps

Jumping Jacks           2          15

Push-ups                    2          12

Bicep curls                  2          12

Jumping Jacks           2          15

Triceps extensions     2          12

Front raises                2          12

Jumping Jacks           2          15

Military press             2          10

Day 9

Jump squats              2          10

Glute bridges             2          12

Lunges                        2          12

Dumbbell squats       2          12

Good mornings          2          12

Step ups                      2          20

Deadlifts                     2          10

Jump squats              1           15

Day 10

30-minute walk

Day 11

Planks                         3          30 sec

Crunches                   3          10

Flutter kicks             3          10

Bicycle crunch         3          10

30-minute walk

Day 12

Jump squats              2          10

Glute bridges             2          12

Lunges                       2          12

Dumbbell squats       2          12

Good mornings          2          12

Step ups                      2          20

Deadlifts                     2          10

Jump squats              1           15

Day 13

30-minute walk

Day 14

Rest

Week 2 of the 28 day fitness challenge

Week 3 of the 28 day workout challenge

By now, you should be feeling super great and, your body is getting stronger. If that is the case, you will love week 3 of the 28 day workout challenge.

This week is important because it is when you will hit the 21-day mark. As you may be aware, 21 days is said to be the point where you can form or break a habit.

While week 3 of this fitness challenge is intense, it is also the zone where exercising will become a habit.

Day 15                        Sets    Reps

 

Jump squats              3          10

Glute bridges             3          10

Lunges                        3          10

Jump squats              1           12

Good mornings          3          10

Dumbbell squats       3          10

Step ups                      3          20

Deadlifts                     3          10

Jump squats              2          10

Day 16

Jump rope                  2          50

Push-ups                    3          10

Bicep curls                  3          10

Jump rope                  2          50

Triceps extensions     3          10

Front raises                3          10

Jump rope                  1           50

Military press             3          10

Tricep dips                  2          10

Day 17

Mountain climbers    2          20

Planks                          3          30 sec

Bicycle crunch           3          10

Leg raise                     2          10

Flutter kicks               3          10

30-minute walk/run interval

Day 18

Jump squats              3          10

Glute bridges             3          10

Lunges                        3          10

Jump squats              1           12

Good mornings          3          10

Dumbbell squats       3          10

Step ups                      3          20

Deadlifts                     3          10

Jump squats              2          10

Day19

45-minute walk

Day 20

Jump rope                  2          50

Push-ups                    3          10

Bicep curls                  3          10

Jump rope                  2          50

Triceps extensions     3          10

Front raises                3          10

Jump rope                  1           50

Military press             3          10

Tricep dips                  2          10

Day 21

Rest

Week 3 of the 28 day workout challenge

Week 4 of the 28 day workout challenge at home

During week 4, you should dig deep and give the workouts 100%. If you can, challenge yourself even more and use heavier weights for exercise where adding extra weight is doable.

Day 22                                   Sets    Reps

45 minutes run/walk interval

Day 23

Kettlebell swing         2          12

Glute bridges             3          12

Lunges                       3          12

Kettlebell swing       2          12

Good mornings        3          12

Goblet squats           3          10

Deadlifts                    3          12

Jump squats             3          12

Day 24

Jump rope                  3          50

Push-ups                    3          12

Bicep curls                  3          12

Jump rope                  2          50

Triceps extensions     3          12

Front raises                3          12

Military press             3          12

Tricep dips                  2          12

Jump rope                  1           50

Day 25

30-minute walk

Day 26

Mountain climbers    2          20

Planks                          3          30 sec

Bicycle crunch           3          10

Leg raise                     2          10

Flutter kicks               3          10

30-minute walk/run interval

Day 27

Kettlebell swing         2          12

Glute bridges             3          12

Lunges                        3          12

Kettlebell swing         2          12

Good mornings          3          12

Goblet squats             3          10

Deadlifts                     3          12

Jump squats              3          12

Day 28

Jump rope                  3          50

Push-ups                    3          12

Bicep curls                  3          12

Jump rope                  2          50

Triceps extensions     3          12

Front raises                3          12

Military press             3          12

Tricep dips                  2          12

Jump rope                  1           50

Week 4 of the 28 day workout challenge at home

What next after the 28-day workout challenge?

Well done on completing the challenge. You shouldn’t let yourself fall off the wagon again. You can do the 30-workout routine for beginners next or the 6-week transformation workout plan.

Other workouts that you can do:

Best toned legs workout (6-week plan)

Final thoughts

The rest days built into this 28 day workout plan are not etched in stone, be flexible when you need to be.

If you need to take an extra day off, do just that. You are better off taking an extra rest day than taking a whole 2 weeks off because of burnout.

Acknowledging the hard work and consistency that you’ll be putting in each day and week will help you stay motivated and keep going when it gets super hard or when life happens.

 

28-day workout plan PDF Day 1-18

 

28-day workout plan PDF plan day 19 -28

References

[1] Koliaki, C., Spinos, T., Spinou, Μ., Brinia, Μ. E., Mitsopoulou, D., & Katsilambros, N. (2018). Defining the Optimal Dietary Approach for Safe, Effective and Sustainable Weight Loss in Overweight and Obese Adults. Healthcare (Basel, Switzerland), 6(3), 73. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare6030073

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