No one’s seen you without a shirt on—in public, anyway— for the past several months, and that’s probably just as well. Between holiday partying and the cold winter, you haven’t had much incentive to keep your belly in check. Until now.

Warm weather’s around the corner, and you might even have a vacation to some tropical destination planned. In short, you’re ready to start training again, so when that shirt does come off it’s not so big that people mistake it for a bed sheet.

So: How do you lose weight and improve your physique by Spring Break? It's simple: You'll want to shave off body fat, while improving your muscular definition. And the good news? You won't need to chain yourself to the treadmill to pull it off. That's why we created the six-week Spring Break Body Plan.

How the Spring Break Body Plan works

The biggest mistake most make when trying to lose fat fast is performing high-rep workouts and overdoing cardio. The best way to increase your metabolism is to increase your muscle mass, so you burn more calories both during exercise and at rest—and that means heavier weights and lower reps. It also means hard exercises. Moves like the Zercher squat, farmer’s walk, and deadlift promote the release of testosterone and growth hormone, which tell your muscle cells to grow and your fat cells to shrink.

We’ve included cardio intervals at the end of two of the workout days. They take only four to eight minutes to do, but they’re still optional. We’re so confident that the weight training prescribed here—combined with a high-protein, lower-carb diet—will carve you up, we’ll leave the cardio to your discretion. Whether you do it or not, rest assured that you’ll be home, showered, and watching TV while the other guys are still slogging away on the treadmill.

Directions

Perform each workout once per week. You can do I and II on back-to-back days, rest a day, and then do III and IV. Superset exercises marked A and B. So, you’ll do a set of A, then B, rest as prescribed, and repeat. The remaining exercises are done normally. Take three seconds to lower the weight on each rep of each exercise. In the first week, use light weights—about 60% of what you can handle. Increase your loads gradually each week until, in Week 6, you’re sure you’re going heavier than you could have in Week 1. At this point, add one set to each exercise (the number of reps is up to you, where applicable).

Do no training the next week. Your body will compensate for the intensity by growing bigger and stronger.