T Nation


I’m 26 and have trained on and off for a number of years. I’ve just got back into the gym and would appreciate some advice on my routine. I’m currently 220 and carrying too much bodyfat, my goals are to add some solid mass and will be following a Chanko style die6t i.e. 6 good meals a day with plenty of calories.

My programme is as follows: -

Monday - Bench press, incline DB press, shoulder press, up-right row, standing DB shrugs.

Wednesday - Squats, leg press, stiff leg deads, calves to finish.

Friday - Lat pull down, seated row, incline shrugs, DB curls.

For the most part I will be using pyramid sets i.e 3 x 10 reps, first set 50% of max, second set 75% of max, third set max for 10 reps. Is this enough? Should I be doing more worksets? Should I train to failure on my workset?

I really would appreciate any comments from the more experienced guys, thanks in advance!

Personally, I think you’d be making a mistake by trying to add muscle to a body that already has “too much bodyfat”, unless your goal is to be a powerlifter. I tried the chanko diet and gained weight, but it was definitely NOT all muscle. If I were you, I would try the t-dawg diet and use the massive eating principles. Get yourself down to an acceptable bodyfat %, or just use the mirror. When you get to where you want to be asthetically, you’ll be able to focus better on gaining solid muscle, because you’ll never be bothered by looking like a pig. If you keep on t-dawg for two months, with maybe some MD6 and T2 (maybe Methoxy or Androsol to minimize LBM loss), minimal cheating, you should look good. Then set a goal for LBM gain. Hypertrophy range is good for lifting for fat loss (8-12 reps) and go a little heavier for muscle gain (6-10 reps). Good luck!

I’m with choad on this one. i say cut back the Fat first…and get tone, then try to pack on the muscle.

In my opinion you should incorporate a more simplified multi-joint and functional training program. This will allow you to attain your goal of adding mass and fat reduction can be further assisting with non-weighted GPP. Keep your training simple - such exercises as One-arm Dumbell Snatch’s, Overhead Squats, Dumbbell Bent Presses will get you to your goal in an efficient manner. If you can add weighted and non-weighted GPP, you will be even further along. Dave Tate wrote a great article on GPP in T-mag if that helps.

Good luck,

Coach Davies

great basic routine, I would just say you should do shrugs w/back and not delts ( you don’t realy need both incline and reg. shrugs) as far as gaining muscle while looseing fat it WILL work. Just don’t restrict your cals too much, and don’t go crazy w/ arobics. there is NOTHEING to the idea of higher reps for fat loss and lower for mass.don;t believe those who tell you to loose the fat first, lets just say you tried to loose fat first, in 2 months you may be down to around 195-200 but5-10 lb’s of that would be muscle loss, now lets say you did not go crazy on your diet just restricted it some and tried to gain muscle at the same time, in 2 months you may be down to 200-210 but you probably gained 5-10 lb’s of muscle, your fat loss would be about the same but with a 5-10lb muscle gain (not unrealistic if you have been training on&off and this time you dedicate yourself to your routine,and you may gain much more) meaning a lower bobyfat%.

oops, also ALWAYS train to failure on your work set (unless your sick, hurt,ect…)consider dips over one of your benches, no real reason to do inclines anyway they DO NOT work the upper pecs anymore than reg benches and actualy less than dips

No, actually inclines have been shown in studies to recruit the clavicular portion of the chest better than flat bench or dips. Remember, the pecs have fibers that don’t run along the same direction, such as the biceps do.

has been shown where? I’m not a big fan of that “muscle meets magnet” book(I think it was flawed) so I hate useing that as an example but its the first one to come to mind and that showed that the incline hits the upper pec no more than reg benches. also for the WHOLE pec muscle the fully contracted position is arms almost right in front of your legs with your hands close together and the fully streched position for the WHOLE pec is with the elbows high and almost behind you, gee sounds kinda like the dip!