T Nation

Advice on My Training Routine


I'll start out by saying I'm 18 years old and working out is my life. During my bulk over the fall and winter I did the following:
This worked for me exceptionally well, I have a very fast recovery rate but as far as reps go I went 4 days of 12 reps, then 4 days of 10 reps, 4 days of 8 reps, and 4 days of 5 reps for strength. I gained about 20 lean lbs. of muscle throughout this period. My goal is to stay lean over the summer but gain strength but keep as lean as possible then when winter comes again I will get back on my bulk.

Currently my basic lifts are:
Squat-Don't know my max but yesterday I got 385 4 times.
I've now been on a cut for 4 weeks and lost 10lbs. so I'm at 230lbs. with 8% body fat. Ive continued my routine that I did while bulking but its impossible for me to keep my strength up while I'm doing 10-12 reps for each set and 60-90 seconds of rest between sets, the lactic acid buildup is to much. My results from the cut have been outstanding but when I workout chest i just can't seem to have a good workout except for on the heavy days because I get burnt out to easy. I've been reading a lot lately on random bodybuilding websites and this one and I've noticed many bodybuilders are incorporating low rep workouts in their routines. I understand this keeps you nice and dense while on a cut. Basically what my point is, I need some help on my training. I have came up with a couple ideas and I would greatly appreciate it if you all could give me your thoughts on it. Also, I am going to keep my routine as far as what I workout each day, that really seems to work for me, its just the reps that I need help on.

First idea:
With this I would do 4 days of 10 reps then the next 4 days would be heavy with 6 reps, then 4 days of 8 reps, then another heavy 4 days of 6 reps.

Second idea:
With this I would do heavy weight for all my core exercises such as bench,military press,squats, deadlifts, and then for exercises like cable flys or ones just for the pump I would do 8-12 reps. Many of my buddies who play football do this routine because it allows them still lift heavy weight on their core exercises and tone up from the 8-12 reps on their auxiliary exercises.

Also here's what my diet looks like:
10:00am 4 egg whites, 2 whole eggs, cup of oatmeal with flaxseed and cinnamon
12:00pm 2 chicken breasts, approx. 43 g. of protein, brown rice, green beans
2:00pm same as meal 2
4:00pm same as meal 2 except chicken will be replace with fish
6:00pm Workout
7:30-8:00pm fish or chicken, sweet potatoes, asparagus
10:00pm chicken/tuna and almonds
12:00am cottage cheese and milk


Dude, if those stats are true, you have a good grasp of what works. It doesn't have to be perfect, just keep at it.

I think most prefer to stay in a lower rep range for most exercises (e.g. 5-8), and higher for things like thighs/back/delts.

You started off at a lean 210lbs when you were 17 years old?? Even at 6ft2, that's still a great base


Yea well I used to play high school football but I ended up getting 2 concussions and 2 brain damages in my junior year so I can't play anymore, I was 225 my junior year and well on my way but the injuries pushed my progress back a little bit. The thing is, I really miss lifting the heavy ass weight often. It's not so bad on a bulk because I won't get burnt out as easy but while on a cut, that's a whole different ball game. I started doin a lot of dropsets on my high rep days so I can still get the reps and let my muscles lift that heavy weight but for now I just want to gain strength and keep my body dense and very cut. I know i'm not gonna gain to much size until the summers over because I'll be eating so lean so I'm satisfied where I'm at with size.


Well, looks like you've got the genetics for this

It is hard "keeping up the pace" in the gym when dieting, which is why you have to cut the volume a little for each exercise.

You didn't mention the sets? Anyway, say you used to do 3-4 x 8 reps on one phase - while dieting it would be better to only do say 2-3 "hard" sets.

Or if you utilised "ramping", you'd only work up to 1 maximal set.

Work capacity greatly reduces because you don't recover as quickly (due to reduced food intake). So you reduce volume a bit (but keep loads high). If you tried to do the same as before while on a diet, you'd burn out (as you've already noted).

Definitely no intensifier techniques, like drop sets, while on a diet :slight_smile:


Your 18, 230lbs at 8% bf, with a 355 bench and near 400lb squat. I don't think you need advice....


If you're 230 at a true 8 percent you're more or less the biggest guy on the board, you should be telling us about our routines.