T Nation

Advice About My Routine


Hi, I started lifting over a year ago following the Starting Strength program. I gained 10+ kg in 3 months. However, due to sickness I had to stop lifting and haven't set foot in a gym for over a year. After browsing T-Nation and reading some articles I've decided that though starting strength is a good starting program it is not in line with my goal.

My current goal is to get big. I am currently 6 foot and 83 kilos. Before starting strength I was 70 kg (so I looked like a skinny, lanky mongrel). Despite that weight gain I still look lanky and somewhat scrawny. I would like to reach 90 kgs or possibly a hundred as soon as possible. I have tentatively put together a program with help from some T-Nation articles and I would really appreciate some feedback:

Day 1 â??Back/Chest
Chin Ups 10X3
Straight-arms pulldown 10X3
Seated Rows 10X3

Bench Press 10X 3
Incline Bench Press 10X3
Neck Press 10X3

Day 2

Day 3 Biceps/Triceps
Barbell Curl 10X3
Seated DB curl 10X3
Zottman curl 10X3

Dips 10X3
Reverse Grip Bench Press 10X3
Overhead DB triceps 10X3

Day 4 Hamstrings/Quads
Squat 10X3
Leg Press 10X3

Deadlift 10X3
leg press (feet high on pad) 10X3

Day 5


Day 6 - Anterior and lateral delts/Rear delts

Clean and Press 10X3
Seated DB Press 10X3
Lateral raise 10X3

Day 7

I need more exercises for Day 6 as I don't think I am doing enough for my delts. I also think I might not be doing enough shoulder exercises.

Thanks, any feedback would be gratefully received.


if SS worked so well...then why move away from it?

EDIT: uve edited your post after mine. ull still gain size with SS with a decent diet, as with any routine. could also look into other pre-written programs (5x5, wsfsb, etc)


SS did work well, but its designed for function rather than looks. I was hoping to get as big and as well rounded in size as soon as possible.


Yes SS is a "Strength" training program, that doesn't mean that you can't gain weight on it. You managed to gain quite a substantial amount of weight last time, so I don't see why you couldn't do it again.

IMO all beginners should start the same why, no matter what the goals. Do a simple, time tested strength routine. Get your main lifts to a "respectable" level, then worry about specialising in size, speed, technique, explosivness, what-ever it may be.

My suggestion to you is- Do SS, add some bi/tri isolation work, do 5x5 until it is killing you then switch to 3x5- the extra volume will help give you abit of a kick start in size.

And remember that gaining size has alot to do with how much you are eating. Eat eat eat eat eat.


Thanks for the replys.

I did like starting strength but my goal now is to put on as much weight as fast as possible. That is my current goal. I did some reading and covered such articles as:

Program Design 101
Screw the Gurus! Make Your Own Training Programs!
by Mike Robertson

Bustin' Ass 101
Don't Think You're a Beginner? You Could be wrong!
by Dave Tate

How to Design a Damn Good Program, Part 1
by Christian Thibaudeau

Dawg School
Basic training for beginners
by Chris Shugart

Training for Newbies
by Christian Thibaudeau

The general impression I gained was that 5X3 is optimal for strength gain whereas 12X9 is better for gaining size. Secondly, starting SS does not cover the whole body. My upper back and lats in particularly haven't really grown. Thirdly, I want to get my form better now that I am starting from low weights again. Fourthly, I want to be able to wear the XXX leather jacket my old man left me.

I know its vain but I want to become a big guy as soon as I can. I have a large head, wide shoulders, wide hips, big hands etc so even at 83 kilos I look scrawny.


I noticed you have 10x3 for most, if not all, of your lifts. For exercises like squats and deadlifts, specifically, this may not be the best option. 10 reps is a good number to shoot for sometimes, but it really should depend on the exercise. If you're looking to pack on some muscle I'd personally do lower reps with higher weights. Do what's right for you though ultimately.


Who is that in your avatar?


Jessica Alba, of course. I hope whatever I said helped. I know my avatar is distracting.


I thought about it and would like to stick with Starting Strength but I can't. Thanks for the replies you made me remember how much I liked it.
Unfortunately at the uni gym you are not allowed to dump weights. Hell, you have to do Deadlifts in the squat rack so I really don't want to dump it there. Before I stopped training I was deadlifting 105 kg and had my grip fail a couple of times. My old gym had a dedicated Olympic bar you could drop from overhead.
Anyway, as soon as I went back to the gym all my lifts were shit but my Deadlift, which was always my best lift, is progressing faster. On a starting strength program I know I'll soon be lifting 105 or more.
So for the rest of the term (12 weeks or so) I need a new program. After that my membership runs out and I will find a new gym with a dedicated Olympic bar.

Until then though I need a program where I am not going to be dumping barbells on their precious floor. Should I go with the program I outlined above (after finding some more lifts for Day 6) or is there an alternate beginner program I can follow?


You don't absolutley have to dump weights on SS, my gym also has a rule against it.
But I don't do cleans, because catching the bar hurts my shoulders, I would rather dump it if I could..
I do pull-ups and BB rows, and on my deadlifts I just lower the bar as quickly as possible without dropping it. They have hard rubber mats that tend to minimise the noise.

But anyway, you seem to want a different approach, and there's nothing wrong with that.

Defranco's ws4sb3 is becomming increasingly popular for beginners (and non beginners too), especially sports people, you could definitley add some good mass with it. It involves more variety and choices than SS, so it's good for people who feel they need it. Because, you know, it can get boring to do the same exercises all the time. I also believe that it is somewhat more balanced from a physique point of veiw than SS, but that's just me. SS is a great program, so is ws4sb.

Chad Waterbury wrote a book called "huge in a hurry", maybe you could check that out. I actually haven't heard of anyone using the program, but I have seen the book and had a quick look through it- it seems a little gimmicky (sorry CW!), I'm not his biggest fan but the basis of the book looks pretty good.

Anyway my vote is for ws4sb's, just post up your exercise choices from the lists and get people to comment, because I can see how it would be possible to make some poor choices, as the program doesn't really explain how to make choices that will compliment each other, to keep it all balanced.