5 Exercises To Shed Christmas Fat and Pack on Lean Muscle

Crossfit, Fitness

Shed Christmas Fat and Pack on Lean Muscle

One of two things happen over Christmas: Either you stop going to the gym altogether, or you stick together a bunch of workouts that just don’t cut it. Either way, right now, you’re probably not feeling at your best.

You might have gained a few pounds (or a few kilos), and you might be feeling like your gains are slipping away. Don’t worry, they’re not, and you’ll be back into it in no time.

Keep Moving, Keep Your Muscles

Hopefully, you kept yourself active over the holidays.

It might not feel like it, but that rest probably did you good, and when you finally get back into the gym this week, you might notice that you’re moving better than you were at the end of 2016. It’s all about maintenance, and if you can keep moving, you’ll be in pretty good shape when it comes to getting back at it.

Train To Shed Christmas Fat Pack on Lean Muscle

5 Exercises to help lose weight after Christmas

Strength, endurance and speed, that’s what we’re interested in, and having said all we’ve just said, here are the Velites team’s picks for five awesome exercises you can do to help you slim down and lose weight after Christmas, and replace it with lean, functional muscle.

Weighted double-unders: Build endurance and strength

Regular double-unders are a great way to burn calories and build stamina, but if you’re ready to take our favourite movement to the next level in 2017, then weighted double-unders are the way forward.

You saw them at the Games in 2016, and if you’re already the owner of a VRopes Fire 2.0, all you need is a set of Velites rope weights, and you’re good to go.

Keep Moving, Keep Your Muscles weighted ropes

What are the advantages?

If you’re already a master of regular jump rope, weighted double-unders provide a new way to challenge your coordination. You’ll use more energy to get the rope around, and you’ll recruit more grip strength, as well as the muscles in your forearms and shoulders.

Combine your weighted handles with Velites’ thickest cable option, and you’re in an entirely different game.

Try this:

  • Tabata weighted double-unders
  • (20 seconds on/10 seconds off) x 8

Thrusters: The ultimate full-body exercise

They’re very few people’s favourite, but thrusters are so good for you.

Clusters (squat clean thrusters) are even better, but the combination of a front squat into an overhead press, is going to tax your entire body and get that fat moving and muscle building, fast.

The beauty of thrusters, too, is that you can make them into either a strength piece, or a conditioning movement (or both.)

Fran is the most obvious example of how brutal thrusters can be, or how about 15.5 from the 2015 Open? Thrusters and calorie rowing? Who enjoyed that?

If you’re looking to get back into it with a bang, if you’re not into messing around, then work thrusters into your WODs over the coming weeks.

Try this:


  • 100 thrusters for time (60/42.5kg)
  • EMOM 5 burpees

No siempre se gana…hoy un Reverse Kalsu ha podido conmigo. Quizas por mi emocion de las primeras rondas??#roto #kalsu #reversekalsu

Un vídeo publicado por David Gonzalez (@david_xft) el

Squats: Doesn’t get any better than this

The simplest way to find your strength again, is to start taking on the simplest movements. Not to say that squats are simple, they’re not, not if you’re doing them correctly, but as a fundamental exercise, squats are one of the best movements around for packing on muscle and shedding excess fat.


Because when you squat heavy, you recruit almost your entire body, and that maximum effort movement means you’ll be calling on everything you have to make it through. Back squats are great for building raw strength, and if front squats are more your thing, that’s going to help you with your cleans.

Your coach is going to have their own ideas about how often you should squat and how to cycle, but as a one-off, try this:

Work up to a heavy double on back squat, then:

  • 10-8-6-4-2 @ 80%
  • Rest, then repeat with front squats.
Exercises To Shed Christmas Fat velites

Clean and jerk: Staple movements build muscle, shed fat

Who doesn’t love clean and jerk? If you’ve been doing CrossFit for a while, you’ll love seeing clean and jerk on the board. It’s a technical lift, it’s push and pull all in one, and once you’ve maxed out, working out with percentages feels amazing.

As a fat shredder, it’s the same story with the clean and jerk as with squats and thrusters: You’re recruiting your entire body for a maximum effort movement, so naturally you’re going to burn calories, even after the lift is done. If you want to get rid of fat and build muscle, then taxing your body beyond what it’s used to, is the best way to do it.

Try this:

Work up to a heavy single on clean and jerk, then:

  • EMOM 15 mins perform 2 full clean and jerk @75-80% of that single

Day 1 back and feeling very much like a dead wet noodle rn. ?

Un vídeo publicado por Mattie Rogers ? (@mattiecakesssss) el

Burpees: No barbells required

You might have done a few burpees over Christmas, but if you didn’t, then you missed a trick.

There are very few better ways to build muscle and shed fat using your own bodyweight than burpees. They’ll raise your heart rate and get you sweating, and because they’re a full-body movement, you’ll be building lean, even muscle in your chest, back, core and legs.

Maintain good form throughout your burpees for maximum effectiveness, and by that, we mean no sagging hips, and make sure you jump your feet up to your hands, and get off the ground just a little bit.

Try this:

EMOM 21 minutes

  • 15 burpees
  • 30 sit-ups
  • 30 air squats

There’s no big secret to building lean muscle and shedding excess fat. It’s all about hard work.

The more you put in, the more you’ll get out, and as long as you didn’t let yourself go too badly over Christmas and the new year, you should be back on track in no time, especially if you’re an experienced CrossFitter.

One thing you might have neglected over the holiday period, though, is your mobility.

When you’re not working out as much, sometimes your mobility routine can take a back seat, and that’s bad news. Make sure you’re warmed up and fully stretched out before you exercise, and, if you’re looking for a way to help yourself recover faster between workouts, then we highly recommend looking into some yoga.

Visit the Velites Sport online shop now, to get your handle weights, and make 2017 the year you take double-unders to the next level.

From everyone at Velites — Happy new year!

Exercises To Shed Christmas Fat velites vropes

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Graeme Keeton

Written by Graeme Keeton

Graeme is a copywriter based in the United Kingdom. He provides the copy for our social media channels and newsletter, in addition to articles covering the CrossFit scene in Europe and the U.S.


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