T Nation

Beginners Training Routine Required


I’m a 52 year old guy who used to do a lot of running but let my fitness go and have now started to hit the gym 5 times a week to do cardio. I am 6’ 2" and around 190 pounds. I have a reasonably good physique for a man of my age but now want to tone up and put on some muscle. I need a beginners routine to kickstart it…


Direct your question(s) to Bulldog’s log on here if he doesn’t pick this one up quickly.


Don’t hesitate to try full-body training every other day to start getting you conditioned to the weight training.
One set per bodypart for 20 reps or so to start.
Keep the weights relatively light and go for a good pump.
You can add sets and extra weight as you feel inclined, though I found when getting back into consistent training that one set of higher reps every other day worked very well.
I used it for many years and have put on quite a bit of solid muscle, even at this age of 54.
I recently slightly changed my training, but I am a firm believer in full body work.
I also believe that more frequent training is beneficial as we age and that takes me back to full body training.
Just some thoughts based on my own experience.
Best of luck.


How am I getting dragged into this… :worried:


Hey many thanks bboch, I have been using machines but have now started using the free weights more and more. I could do with directing to a beginners set routine on here so I can follow a plan and not stand there scratching my head wondering what to do next.
I guess technique is a learnt thing and should improve over three weeks and months.


No problem.
Just trying to share what worked for me when I was getting back into training after an injury back in 2011.
My mind set now is to train properly so that I can avoid any injuries and make it to the next workout. Getting injured at this age can be a real drag due to the potential length of time to heal.
Form is critical, as is rep speed.
Keep your speed steady and don’t jerk or change direction too quickly because, as I found last week, it can cause muscle tears.
I have a thread here about my current training plan, which is 5 or 6 sets of 10 per bodypart, with an upper and lower body split, training 5 days per week.
Previously, I was training significantly heavier than I am now.
I have to say, even by dropping the weights I have been using to get all sets of 10, I am getting a good pump and getting that soreness in the muscles that I haven’t felt for a while.
Goes to show that heavy weights aren’t the answer in all cases.
I know that I won’t be setting any personal records at this age but can still get in shape and build muscle.
You may find that some workouts don’t “feel right” to you, even though they may work for others.
I really like training each body part more frequently now, as I said, it “feels right” to me.
I’d say start light, don’t worry too much about the weights and you should be on track to figure out what seems to work best for you.
Hope this wasn’t too much rambling.


From the other thread, here is my new training routine.
You might try this but back it off to 2 or 3 sets of 10 to start.
You’ll be in and out of the gym in no time with this workout.
It’s fairly simple and I have found that less can be more.
Case in point, I just did the leg workout yesterday with literally half the weights I was using in my old workout and I am sore!!!
You’ll notice that I will train dedicated arms only once per week.
The multiple upper body sessions should stimulate the arms to some extent, so I am trying to avoid overtraining.

Also, choose exercises that work for you, not necessarily those listed below.

Front Pulldown 3 x 10
Cable Row to Chest 3 x 10
Alternate back exercise once per week - Deadlift 6 x 8-10, in place of pulldown and row
Incline Cable Fly 3 x 10
Face Pulls 1 x 12
Overhead Press 6 x 10
Hammer Incline 3 x 10
Standing Calf 6 x 10

Leg Curl 6 x 10
Leg Press 6 x 10
Seated Calf 6 x 10
Barbell Shrugs 6 x 8

Once per week on day off:
Biceps 6 x 10
Triceps 6 x 10
Forearms, varied exercises, 6 x 10


Try this…


Thanks so much, that’s just the sort of thing I’m after!!!
I needed something prescriptive to kick start me and that fits the bill perfectly :grinning:


That’s a good way to train as well.
I trained almost exactly the same way back about 20 years ago.
Simple and effective.


Good to hear! let us know how it goes