T Nation

Beginner Wants to Add Mass

Hi everyone! New to Tnation and new to personal training. I finally got my 1st Client!! :slight_smile:

He’s mid 20’s good health, good ROM and flexibility. He’s looking to add mass. What I’m looking for is a just a bit of feedback on my routine right now and progressions from there. I’m a bit familiar but any other input is helpful. Unfortunately being new to the game and being a marathon runner, and only lifting a few times a week the technique I use won’t cut it here.

Currently I have him do bilateral weight training, a few compound movements. I’ll be working with him 3/days a week with split routine Day 1-chest/back Day 2-Bicep/Tricep/Core Day 3- Shoulders/Legs

I suggested he purchase protein (20-35G) range and increase his calorie intake. Also create a food log to go over nutrition points.

My current Splits are as follows: each 4 exercises 2/body part with one core/ low back exercise 2 sets 12-15 reps

Day 1- Chest/Back

Bench Press: 25lbs
Neutral Grip Pull up(assisted): - 90lbs-against bodyweight
Seated Chest Press: (50lbs)
Seated Row: 2 sets (40lbs)
Trunk Extension 2- sets (12-15 reps or until fatigued

Day 2- Bi- Tri

Barbell Curl- 30lbs
Lying down barbell press- 25lbs
Hammer curls with cable 30lbs
Tricep pulldown with cable- 25lbs
Plank

Day 3- Legs/ Shoulders

Barbell Front Raise-15lbs
leg press/Squat Machine- no weight or 20-25lbs- not sure may be to soon to teach the mechanics of a squat
Shoulder Press Machine- 35-40lbs
Calf Raises
Stability Ball Roll out

My game plan is each session add 5lbs of weight as necessary about 2-3 progress change routine.

Thanks.

Runr4life

Cheers from a fellow trainer!

Few questions first, though. Is your client completely new to weightlifting, or just new to you?

The way you wrote down the routine kinda confuses me. For each movement, is he doing 2 sets of 12-15 reps, or is it just the core exercises?

I don’t want to make assumptions without getting those points clarified first.

Just a couple of suggestions. Assuming this guy is a novice to strength training, he probably doesn’t need an entire day devoted to arms. Also, teach real barbell squats if at all possible, as well as barbell presses (not machines). You can’t teach proper mechanics on machines, and barbells are superior to machines for novice strength development.

I agree if he is just starting out he should be doing full body workouts.

[quote]Runr4life wrote:
What I’m looking for is a just a bit of feedback on my routine right now[/quote]
I’d need some basic info about the client (height, weight, general fat level), but on the surface, I think the routine you laid out is doing him a complete disservice.

Every trainer has their own set of methods they believe in, and new trainers need time to figure their’s out for themselves, but I disagree with a lot of what you’ve proposed.

Just a few points: You have the kid doing more work for his biceps than for his entire legs. You seem very interested (one might say over-focused) on training the abs/core. Any reason that should get three times as much attention than anything else?

You said he’s healthy and flexible, but you’re hesitant to teach him to squat. You seem pre-set on using 2x12-15 for every exercise. By using higher reps, I believe you’re avoiding the opportunity to develop a foundation of strength. And when you say the plan is to “add 5 pounds as necessary”, is that on each exercise, even bigger bodyparts like back and legs?

Again, every trainer has their own way of getting the job done. Just be sure that you will, actually, get the job done for the client. One of the single worst mistakes I see new trainers fall into is training people the same way they personally train. Strong trainers want to train every client like a powerlifter, trainers who compete in bodybuilding want to train every client like a potential bodybuilder, etc. If the client sticks with you, it ends up being a waste of their time, money, and energy.

I’m not sure what that means.

Runr4life…what did you learn when becoming a personal trainer? Maybe you should stick with training runners, and refer this client to someone that can better help them reach their goals. As a trainer myself, I have certainly steered clients to a different training style.

[quote]Full Metal wrote:
Cheers from a fellow trainer!

Few questions first, though. Is your client completely new to weightlifting, or just new to you?

The way you wrote down the routine kinda confuses me. For each movement, is he doing 2 sets of 12-15 reps, or is it just the core exercises?

I don’t want to make assumptions without getting those points clarified first.[/quote]

He is new to me and new to weightlifting. He is doing 2 sets 12 reps of each exercise.

So he pays you…you come here to get advice…he thinks it’s your program/ideas…seems moral.

[quote]chobbs wrote:
So he pays you…you come here to get advice…he thinks it’s your program/ideas…seems moral.[/quote]

to be fair man, it’s better he comes here for advice than for him to continue to do his client a disservice, as CC put it.

Read 10 articles by this guy…
https://www.T-Nation.com/article/performance_training/lessons_from_southwood&cr=

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:

[quote]Runr4life wrote:
What I’m looking for is a just a bit of feedback on my routine right now[/quote]
I’d need some basic info about the client (height, weight, general fat level), but on the surface, I think the routine you laid out is doing him a complete disservice.

He’s about 5’7", 145lbs, 10% body fat,
The day 1 program was given to me by another trainer that assisted the 1st consult with me.

Every trainer has their own set of methods they believe in, and new trainers need time to figure their’s out for themselves, but I disagree with a lot of what you’ve proposed.

Just a few points: You have the kid doing more work for his biceps than for his entire legs. You seem very interested (one might say over-focused) on training the abs/core. Any reason that should get three times as much attention than anything else?

You said he’s healthy and flexible, but you’re hesitant to teach him to squat. You seem pre-set on using 2x12-15 for every exercise. By using higher reps, I believe you’re avoiding the opportunity to develop a foundation of strength. And when you say the plan is to “add 5 pounds as necessary”, is that on each exercise, even bigger bodyparts like back and legs?

Add weight when necessary, I’m keeping his reps around 12,and 5 lbs to the compound movements.

Again, every trainer has their own way of getting the job done. Just be sure that you will, actually, get the job done for the client. One of the single worst mistakes I see new trainers fall into is training people the same way they personally train. Strong trainers want to train every client like a powerlifter, trainers who compete in bodybuilding want to train every client like a potential bodybuilder, etc. If the client sticks with you, it ends up being a waste of their time, money, and energy.

I’m not sure what that means.[/quote]

I was just looking for some feedback. I appreciate all the hard criticism. This client isn’t for me. I’ll refer him back to the original trainer and apologize. I’ve only been training for a few months. I’m not enjoying it and just can’t grasp it all. I’m not pursuing training anymore. I thought about all the passion I have for fitness, why not turn into a career. Thanks all for the realization that this isn’t for me. I’ll just stick to running.

Runr4life

[quote]Runr4life wrote:
I’m not enjoying it and just can’t grasp it all. I’m not pursuing training anymore. Thanks all for the realization that this isn’t for me.[/quote]
So you went from, “I’m so excited to be a trainer and glad I have my first client” to “I’m quitting the business, this really isn’t for me” in the course of 24 hours? You’re either a super-troll or have some of the lowest self-esteem I’ve seen in a while.

Dude, it wasn’t my intention to discourage you from being a trainer. It’s a learning process, part from textbooks to get certified and then a large part of learning on the job. If you can back up your decisions for the program choices you made, then that’s 100% fine. The dude’s your client, or at least was. I would train him differently than you, Cosgrove would train him differently than me, and Thibaudeau would train him differently than that.

End of the day, as long as the dude gets results, you’re doing it right. It just so happens that I don’t think he’d get results doing what you suggested. If you think he will, then stick to your guns and train him. But be open-minded enough to objectively consider changes as you go.

You might want to read a bit about being a trainer, think on it, and then decide if you really want to bail out. Just because you’re a runner doesn’t mean you shouldn’t train people. The main way problems will pop up is if you’re stubbornly dogmatic about sticking to what you want to do simply because it’s what you want to do.





What the hell just happened?

Ya I was excited in the beginning 5 months ago when I got certified. I got sick and my motivation changed, I had setback after setback. No need to explain it, I’ve just been debilitated for months and still am that is what makes it difficult. I also had another trainer obligating me to the gym when I personally wasn’t ready, and I told them that. Pressured to get me in the door even though I expressed my feelings and inadequacies.

I have a hard time now getting myself motivated due this illness. How can I motivate someone else if I don’t have the motivation, and wake-up in pain for days at a time. I currently have a full-time job that I love! I thought training would just be an added bonus part-time. With my current job the time constraints are just to unpredictable and it’s been difficult to acquire set hours and/or a client.

I’ve been a runner for 7 years now and that’s all I know. I’m not comfortable with a client that wants to add mass when it is something I’ve never acquired myself nor felt the need too. I would light strength training 2-3-days/wk with HIIT, interval training and speed work to train for races. I’m not established enough nor have the proper knowledge to assist someone in adding mass. I was certified through ACE but felt it was inadequate. I’ve felt this way for a while now, and you all have helped me come to a realization and yes within the last 24 hours. I’m ok with it. No harm no foul. I appreciate the feedback and criticism.

Runr4life

I feel like a dick now

[quote]Runr4life wrote:
Ya I was excited in the beginning 5 months ago when I got certified. I got sick and my motivation changed, I had setback after setback. No need to explain it, I’ve just been debilitated for months and still am that is what makes it difficult. I also had another trainer obligating me to the gym when I personally wasn’t ready, and I told them that. Pressured to get me in the door even though I expressed my feelings and inadequacies.

I have a hard time now getting myself motivated due this illness. How can I motivate someone else if I don’t have the motivation, and wake-up in pain for days at a time. I currently have a full-time job that I love! I thought training would just be an added bonus part-time. With my current job the time constraints are just to unpredictable and it’s been difficult to acquire set hours and/or a client.

I’ve been a runner for 7 years now and that’s all I know. I’m not comfortable with a client that wants to add mass when it is something I’ve never acquired myself nor felt the need too. I would light strength training 2-3-days/wk with HIIT, interval training and speed work to train for races. I’m not established enough nor have the proper knowledge to assist someone in adding mass. I was certified through ACE but felt it was inadequate. I’ve felt this way for a while now, and you all have helped me come to a realization and yes within the last 24 hours. I’m ok with it. No harm no foul. I appreciate the feedback and criticism.

Runr4life[/quote]

A trainer is not just someone who says,“Do this for this many”. Don’t get me wrong, you have to know your shit, but some people need a trainer to motivate them. Maybe your that guy; don’t give up so soon.

13.1? My magnetic stick is 0.0

[quote]RampantBadger wrote:
Read 10 articles by this guy…
https://www.T-Nation.com/article/performance_training/lessons_from_southwood&cr=
[/quote]
If he could do that and coach a client, then I could too!! :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: yayy

@doublelung84
You don’t have to rationalize, or worry about his personal feelings. It’s okay.

@Runr4life
You’re a good sport. Keep doing the things you love and accept the fact that you have a lot to learn about strength training. It’s doable if you want to. I know I do.

[quote]@doublelung84
You don’t have to rationalize, or worry about his personal feelings. It’s okay. [/quote]
Well no, but every so often, a man signs up for something, wakes up the next morning and thinks ‘hang on, did I just screw up?’ Then it dawns on him; “I need to just do what I’m told…” Then he gets his arse out of bed and gets on with some exercise, he goes to work, makes his money for the day and there’s no harm, no foul. The damage only comes when you sign up for something stupid and you keep being stupid about it. Ultimately, the sentence “It’s just not ‘me’, sergeant” is a copout. Wherever you go.

Sorry for getting that out in public, just gotta go for a run and get my valium. Toodle pip.