12 Week Fat Destroyer: Complete Fat Loss Workout & Diet Program

12 Week Fat Destroyer: Complete Fat Loss Workout & Diet Program
This is a complete 12 week program to help you get ripped. Feature includes detailed diet plan and cardio schedule, along with a 4 day upper/lower muscle building split.

Workout Summary

Lose Fat
Full Body
Beginner
12 weeks
6
30-45 minutes
Barbell, Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, Kettle Bells
Male & Female
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Workout Description

This workout plan is designed to help you shred fat and get in shape in only 12 weeks. This might sound like hype, but it's not. The following plan is not easy. It starts slowly, but builds rapidly.

Every detail of your diet and training for the next 12 weeks will be laid out for you. You will be told exactly what to eat, how much cardio to do, and how to weight train.

The goal is simple: lose fat, maintain muscle mass, get in shape and transform your physique as much as possible over the next 3 months. You want to not only look better, but have the fitness level and strength to match your new body.

12 Week Program Expectations

Over the next 12 weeks your goals and expectations are:

  • Fat Loss - To lose at least 20 pounds of fat.
  • Muscle Mass - To maintain, or even gain lean muscle mass.
  • Conditioning - To be in amazing shape; perhaps the nest shape in years.

The 12 Week Diet Plan

Each week will consist of 3 different types of eating days.

  • High Carb Days - 1 day per week
  • Moderate Carb Days - 3 days per week
  • Low Carb Days - 3 days per week

You may structure these days in any preferred manner. I suggest keeping the high carb day for special occasions. That way you can attend family functions, or eat out with friends, and indulge a little more than normal.

It should be noted that calorie intake can be adjusted based on metabolism. The follow changes are recommended:

  • Men 40+ - Reduce daily calories by 300.
  • Men 20-25 - Increase daily calories by 300.
  • Women 40+ - Reduce daily calories by 200.
  • Women 20-25 - Increase daily calories by 200.
12 Week Eating Plan for Men
  • Week 1 - 3 low carb days with 2300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2400 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 2 - 3 low carb days with 2200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2400 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 3 - 3 low carb days with 2100 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2400 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 4 - 3 low carb days with 2000 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2400 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 5 - 3 low carb days with 2300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2300 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 6 - 3 low carb days with 2200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2300 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 7 - 3 low carb days with 2100 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2300 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 8 - 3 low carb days with 2000 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2300 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 9 - 3 low carb days with 2300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2200 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 10 - 3 low carb days with 2200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2200 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 11 - 3 low carb days with 2100 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2200 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.
  • Week 12 - 3 low carb days with 2000 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 2200 calories, 1 high carb day of 2700 calories.

Protein intake should be a minimum of 180 grams per day. If you are a bigger guy, or have a fair amount of muscle mass, then eat 200 to 220 grams of protein per day. If you eat a little more protein the drop your daily fat intake to make up for the calories.

Fat intake should be approximately 20-30% of your daily calories. Once you have determined your daily calories from proteins and fats, fill in your eating plan with carbohydrates.

Also, you are allowed up to 10% of your daily calories from dirty foods/junk foods. You do not have to eat any junk if you prefer. This option exists as a convenience, should you be battling a craving, or attending a social gathering where you would prefer to have a small snack.

12 Week Eating Plan for Women
  • Week 1 - 3 low carb days with 1500 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1600 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 2 - 3 low carb days with 1400 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1600 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 3 - 3 low carb days with 1300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1600 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 4 - 3 low carb days with 1200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1600 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 5 - 3 low carb days with 1500 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1500 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 6 - 3 low carb days with 1400 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1500 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 7 - 3 low carb days with 1300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1500 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 8 - 3 low carb days with 1200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1500 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 9 - 3 low carb days with 1500 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1400 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 10 - 3 low carb days with 1400 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1400 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 11 - 3 low carb days with 1300 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1400 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.
  • Week 12 - 3 low carb days with 1200 calories, 3 moderate carbs days with 1400 calories, 1 high carb day of 1900 calories.

For women, protein intake should be a minimum of 100 grams per day. If you are in good shape and have a fair amount of muscle mass, then eat 120 grams of protein per day. If you eat a little more protein the drop your daily fat intake to make up for the calories.

Fat intake should be approximately 20-30% of your daily calories. Once you have determined your daily calories from proteins and fats, fill in your eating plan with carbohydrates.

Also, you are allowed up to 10% of your daily calories from dirty foods/junk foods. You do not have to eat any junk if you prefer. This option exists as a convenience, should you be battling a craving, or attending a social gathering where you would prefer to have a small snack.

The 12 Week Cardio Plan

It doesn't matter which form of cardio you use for these 12 weeks. Pick something that gets your heart moving, be it treadmill, elliptical, or swimming.

The first thing you will notice about this cardio plan is that it starts slow. That's ok. Right now you are out of shape. This program is designed to get you in shape over the course of 12 weeks.

Be patient. Trust the plan and stick to the plan. After the end of 12 weeks your level of conditioning may surprise you.

During the first 6 weeks take at least one day of rest between cardio workouts. After week 6 it is recommended that you perform cardio using a 2 days on, 1-2 days off pattern.

  • Week 1 - 3 cardio sessions. 5, 8 and 5 minutes.
  • Week 2 - 3 cardio sessions. 8, 10 and 8 minutes.
  • Week 3 - 3 cardio sessions. 10, 12 and 10 minutes.
  • Week 4 - 3 cardio sessions. 12, 15 and 12 minutes.
  • Week 5 - 3 cardio sessions. 15, 20 and 15 minutes.
  • Week 6 - 3 cardio sessions. 20, 20 and 20 minutes.
  • Week 7 - 4 cardio sessions. 20, 22, 20 and 22 minutes.
  • Week 7 - 4 cardio sessions. 22, 25, 22 and 25 minutes.
  • Week 9 - 4 cardio sessions. 25, 27, 25 and 27 minutes.
  • Week 10 - 4 cardio sessions. 27, 30, 27 and 30 minutes.
  • Week 11 - 4 cardio sessions. 30, 35, 30 and 35 minutes.
  • Week 12 - 4 cardio sessions. 35, 40, 30 and 45 minutes.

12 Week Gym Workout Split

You will be using an upper/lower workout during the next 12 weeks. Rep schemes are merely guidelines.

When a weight becomes manageable using the given set and rep schemes, add weight to the bar. For sake of convenience, use the same weight for each of the sets for a given exercise.

  • Day 1 - Upper A
  • Day 2 - Lower A
  • Day 3 - Off
  • Day 4 - Upper B
  • Day 5 - Lower B
  • Day 6 - Off
  • Day 7 - Off
12 Week Gym Workout
Upper A
Exercise Sets Reps
Incline Bench Press 3 8-10
One Arm Dumbbell Row 3 10-12
Seated Barbell Press 3 8-10
Pull Ups 3 10
Skullcrushers 3 10-12
Dumbbell Curl 3 10-12
12 Week Gym Workout
Lower A
Exercise Sets Reps
Squats 3 8-10
Leg Curl 3 12-15
Leg Extension 3 12-15
Leg Press Calf Raise 3 15-20
Plank 3 60 sec
Twisting Hanging Knee Raise 3 20
12 Week Gym Workout
Upper B
Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Bench Press 3 10
Barbell Row 3 8-10
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3 12-15
Lat Pull Down 3 10-12
Cable Tricep Extensions 3 10-12
EZ Bar Preacher Curl 3 10-12
12 Week Gym Workout
Lower B
Exercise Sets Reps
Leg Press 3 15-20
Stiff Leg Deadlift 3 8-10
Walking Dumbbell Lunge 3 10
Seated Calf Raise 3 15-20
Cable Crunch 3 20
Russian Twist 3 20

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About The Author
Max Riley is a freelance muscle building and nutrition writer who has had his work appear in numerous print and Internet magazines.

177 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Tue, 06/06/2017 - 08:45
chetaan

hello
i am a 20kg over weight with 32% bodyfat, will this 12 weeks routine be suitable for me?
i used to workout previously but theres been a gap for 8 months

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Posted Thu, 05/18/2017 - 08:40
Nick S

Hi Josh,
If I can do cardio for a longer stint than 5-10 minutes, should I start at my minimum, or just stick to your plan?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 05/18/2017 - 09:22
JoshEngland

Hi Nick,

Thank you for your question, however I cannot take credit for this program as I did not write it.

It depends, are you new to the weight lifting portion as well? It might be worth starting off with how the program is written. With that said, it is simply a template, so you are more than welcome to modify it in any way to better fit your needs, experience level, and goals.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 05/06/2017 - 07:51
Colin M

Hi I am just about to embark on a weight loss mission after wrecking my body for the last year :( been looking for a complete plan and I really like this. just one thing that is confusing me is at the top it states this is a 6 days a week beginner course? however when the 12 week gym plan is laid out it is only for four days? where and what do I do the other 2 days please?

Day 1 - Upper A
Day 2 - Lower A
Day 3 - Off
Day 4 - Upper B
Day 5 - Lower B
Day 6 - Off
Day 7 - Off

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 05/08/2017 - 09:19
JoshEngland

Hi Colin,

I believe it has to do with the cardio portion of the training program. While you only have 4 weight training days, you perform cardio every other day for 6 weeks then 2 days on, 1 day off for the last 6 weeks. So, on average, you'll have some form of training 6 days per week.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sun, 04/30/2017 - 21:03
Johm

I have a couple questions question I see that I would be lifting weights Monday Tuesday thursday and Friday and with the cardio sessions one day off in between so they would be on Monday Wednesday and Friday on a 5,8,5 scheme so on my day off Wednesday I would need to run on a treadmill or do whatever cardio and be up at the gym for only 8 mins? Also in general they seem kind of low intensity would it be more for a warm up before actually lifting? Or something that should be done after. Thank you

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 05/01/2017 - 09:59
JoshEngland

Hi John,

That is correct for the first week. The duration does increase every week. If you do not wish to travel to the gym for 5 mins of cardio, you could always find something to do at or around your house such as jogging through your neighborhood.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 04/27/2017 - 23:50
Paul

Does the values (Men 40+ - Reduce daily calories by 300) and (Men 20-25 - Increase daily calories by 300) refer to your age? Thank you for the clarification.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 04/28/2017 - 09:13
JoshEngland

Hi Paul,

Yes, that is correct.

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Posted Sun, 04/23/2017 - 16:21
Keir

I am 38 and want to lose 30lbs before the end of the year (currently 198lbs). Will this plan work for my goal? What level of weight loss can I expect?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 04/24/2017 - 09:28
JoshEngland

Hi Keir,

1-2lbs of fat loss is a realistic goal so long as you're in a caloric deficit over time. This program can certainly help, but it is important to know your caloric needs. From there you'll need to subtract ~250-500 calories to put yourself in a deficit and achieve your long term goals. Below is a link to our calorie calculator. Enter your information and it'll provide you with your maintenance level calories:

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/tools/bmr-calculator

Hope this helps!

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Posted Mon, 04/03/2017 - 13:19
Sarah

Can someone please specify what the carb intake should be based on the calories provided? What is considered low, moderate and high carb? For a 1200 calorie day, I am coming up with 40g fat, 110g protein, and 100 carbs. This is suppose to be a low carb day... so is 100 considered "LOW"?

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Posted Mon, 03/27/2017 - 10:03
David

Hey. Great workout, I'm done for it 100%. My question is, during the 12 weeks, am I supposed to take supplements and if I am, when do I start?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 03/28/2017 - 09:07
JoshEngland

Hi David,

Supplementation is highly individualized and is based on each person individual needs. They're used to supplement proper nutrition and fill gaps in an areas you struggle to get through whole foods.

Which supplements should you take and when should you start? That's a difficult question to answer, but I've provided a link to an article below which may help you gain an idea of where to start.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/absolute-beginner-guide-bodyb...

Hope this helps!

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Posted Fri, 02/24/2017 - 08:24
Georg

Hi guys. I have a question. Calorie calculator says that i need 3054 cal(4 gym das per week) to stay to my current weight. I want to lose weight . Meal plan says that i should go with 2300cal and increse by 300 cal so i end up on 2600 cal. Should i use that as parametar or should i increse my 3054 cal with 300?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 02/24/2017 - 09:17
JoshEngland

Hi Georg,

Unless your meal plan was prescribed by a medical practitioner, a safe rule of thumb is to take your maintenance calories and subtract 250 calories. Test that amount of calories out for a little while and judge your progress. If you're remaining the same weight, subtract another 250 calories for a total of a 500 calorie deficit.

A good goal is 0.5-1lb of weight loss per week.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 02/25/2017 - 05:08
Georg

No, i dont have prescribed meal plan, doctor told me that i dont need it. I mean he told me that because i have perfect medical stats (low cholesterol and blood presure and perfect heart function) even that i m 181 cm tall and weight around 107 kg. My perfect weight (by body type) is around 85-90kg. I m going to gym for 5 months now but fat loss is very very slow like 1.5 kg per month. And because of that i m interested in good meal plan. Ill try your method and will see what will happen.

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Posted Wed, 01/18/2017 - 20:54
eric

this workout routine looks solid. can i use this exactly workout routine in a muscle building or bulking phase ?

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Posted Sat, 11/05/2016 - 17:07
josh robinson

Have you got a diet plan with meals laid out?

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Posted Fri, 01/20/2017 - 19:57
Brenda Hamilton

I am also interested to see if you have a diet plan to follow?

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Posted Fri, 10/21/2016 - 20:38
Christine

Hi, I'm a 43 year old female who has been weight training mostly on than off for over 25years. having started pretty young it was always for fun and enjoy being strong. I'm about 30%BF and want to use this nutrition plan and workout for a transformation contest. Is it suitable for an experienced lifter who has a poor diet or do I need any modifications

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Posted Sat, 10/15/2016 - 16:43
Karen

Can these work outs be completed at home vs a gym? Also, can running be the cardio?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 10/17/2016 - 09:06
JoshEngland

Karen,

If you have the equipment to perform these exercises at home, then absolutely. Also, you can add running to this program for cardio. Just make sure that you are able to recover properly when adding in cardio so you can continually perform your best during your weightlifting sessions.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Tue, 02/07/2017 - 11:25
Dharmesh

Running and interval sprints are good cardiovascular exercise

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Posted Sun, 10/09/2016 - 10:01
Venkat

Hi
I am 30, my weight is 120 Kg, 180 cm height.
I want to start with a serious diet and workout plan.
Can anyone guide me. Please

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Posted Tue, 08/16/2016 - 13:13
Xty

How much/long for CV work?

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Posted Sun, 06/26/2016 - 15:04
charbel

hello, i'm 17 years ( i love sugar)
my weight is (81kg) and height: 178 cm
i want to lose 10 kg ( diet plan) and i want to stop sugar ...

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Posted Sun, 05/15/2016 - 01:30
Sara

Hiya! I'm 15 years old and just thought that this workout could help maintain my fitness, I would be changing the amount of reps to a little bit lower (instead of 10-12 it would be 8-10 etc) but do you think it's still a good workout plan for me?

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Posted Sat, 04/09/2016 - 07:42
Nick

Hey guys i'm 16 years old and i'm over weight does this plan work for me ?

I need to lose about 50 KG

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Posted Tue, 04/12/2016 - 07:13
Ahmed zain

yes that's good for u ((( fat boy )) hhhhh

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Posted Tue, 04/12/2016 - 14:40
Nick

Thanks for your reply ^^

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Posted Thu, 05/19/2016 - 16:34
Nick

Thanks man I lost 10 kgs in 3 weeks and im still going hard on the gym !

Thanks for the motivation

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Posted Sun, 01/08/2017 - 09:41
Steve

Nick. Keep up the good work bro. Don't worry about what the other ass said. He's probably eating donuts as we speak

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Posted Sun, 05/08/2016 - 09:06
J

Hey Nick,
I think the program would be awesome for you. Don't worry about what the other guy said just go for it and prove everyone wrong :)

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Posted Wed, 05/25/2016 - 17:52
Christina

Hey Nick!
This is a great program for you! The workouts are really specific and will be easy to monitor progress! Work on limiting your sugar intake, eating fresh fruit and veg, and keep at it every day! Your going to do great! set short goals with doable results to mentally overcome the fitness hump. Meaning wake up and say today I will only drink one pop, and then tomorrow wake up and say I will not drink any pop! Short term goals make long term results a possibility! Good for you!!!!

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Posted Wed, 05/25/2016 - 17:50
Christina

Super derogatory comment! I am assuming you have no idea what the real purpose of health and fitness is!

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Posted Sun, 05/29/2016 - 15:51
Nick

Thank you so much Christina !

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Posted Mon, 06/27/2016 - 08:58
Fitnessforall

He is trying to get in shape, you piece of shit. Get off the forum if you can't give positive comments.

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Posted Thu, 06/02/2016 - 07:50
HIIT

Do interval or intense circuit training both cardio and strength for maximal fat loss....and never stick to a single plan.....change per month.....

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Posted Thu, 06/02/2016 - 07:50
HIIT

Do interval or intense circuit training both cardio and strength for maximal fat loss....and never stick to a single plan.....change per month.....

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Posted Mon, 06/13/2016 - 20:39
Nick

I just lost 11 KG in 2 months !

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Posted Mon, 06/27/2016 - 01:58
anthony

you know what? i was born in april 9 and any comments about april 9 is a strong one! keep it up buddy! you are doing great... consistensy is the key..

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Posted Wed, 08/03/2016 - 07:31
Nick

Thanks buddy!
I'm still going hard in the gym and I lost more weight.

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Posted Mon, 01/04/2016 - 16:04
Paulette Baker

I just started this plan. I have tried many plans before and I really like how this is structured and at my age will not tear me up as other plans were. They were also very time consuming taking up to 2 hours a day. My question is... I am 47 years old, 5 ft and about 148 lbs. I am tracking my food but unsure as to how may carbs for a low carb day, mod carb and high carb day. Can I get some sort of range as to how many carbs for those days so I can track better? Thank you so much.

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Posted Sat, 02/06/2016 - 09:14
Tamara Baer

Paulette, Once you have figured out your ideal macros for the low calorie day, the increase in calories for your moderate and high carb days accounts for the increase in carbs. So your moderate carb day goes up by 25 grams and high carb days increase by 75 to 100 grams of carbs. Hope that helps.

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Posted Tue, 11/01/2016 - 12:17
Jennifer Smith

I also had questions regarding the cab amounts. On some of the weeks, week 9 for example, the moderate days have fewer calories than the low carb days?

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Posted Wed, 12/23/2015 - 15:35
Jonatan

This program looks great but PERSONALLY I dont like upper/lower body splits due to the low volume, from experience I feel like 6 sets of chest a week is way to little.

Push - Pull - Leg - Push - Pull - Leg - Rest is what I personally would prefer, or doing cycles of Chest Triceps - Back Biceps - Legs - Shoulders Abs (Usually rest on saturdays)

Would it make any difference replacing it with a 3- or 4-split instead?

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Posted Mon, 11/23/2015 - 16:00
Ben

I've been doing this for 5 weeks, religiously. I've also been doing a CV workout (cycle or swim) on one of my rest days.

I've increased the weight I can lift in every exercise, but have lost no weight or body fat, at all.

I've stuck to the diet also, if anything, eating less carbs.

Will the weight/body fat drop off in the last 6 weeks when the cardiovascular workouts get longer and more frequent, or am I doing something wrong?

Cheers, Ben

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Posted Wed, 12/09/2015 - 06:40
Jeff

If you are not losing weight, I would look at diet before looking at training. Are you hitting all your macros? Are you eating hidden carbs? Are you eating nutritious foods? Did you cut out as much sugar,bread,white rice and pasta as possible? A small adjustment to the way you eat can pay huge dividends.

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Posted Mon, 08/31/2015 - 04:08
Aroen

Hi there, I was wondering if you recommend a warm-up before each exercise.. Or just a general warm-up before the work-out? thanks in advance..