T Nation

Building Program


Hello everyone,

Just joined the site today. I'm a freshman football player in college. Starting linebacker for my D-III team. Season just ended so I'm looking to start an off-season program conditioning / bodybuilding program. My stats now:

19 yrs old, 5'10", 195 lbs.
Bench - 225 x 10 (tested for football)
Squat - 325 x 6 (tested for football)
40 Time - 4.60 (tested for football)

Looking to work in my core for shreded abs, and bulk in all other areas for next season. Would like to be at least 210 lbs.

This is my plan for now:
3 days on, 1 off lifting
cardio and abs every other day

day 1 - chest/tris
day 2 - back/bi's
day 3 - legs/shoulders

cardio starting with 3 miles on treadmill (cold outside): mon, wed, fri, sun, tues, thurs, etc...

Diet will be high protein (200 grams), moderate carbs (50-100 grams), very little fat.

I'd appreciate any suggestions or comments. Thanks!!


Assuming by "very little fat" you mean 50 grams/day, you have, with 200 grams of protein and 100 grams of carbs, a whopping 1650 calories per day. This is probably less than half of what you need. Unless you were severely underweight during your season, adding 15 lbs. of LBM in an offseason will not be easy. With less than 3000 kCal/day, you will not come close.

Besides your split (which is probably not ideal,) you haven't told us anything about your program either. Put more on the table and you'll get good advice here.

Whichever way you take it, I wish you the best of luck.


Sorry for the lack of detail, I was just looking for general feedback but here is a more detailed look.

Day 1 - Chest/Tri's

Flat Bench (barbell) - 4 sets x 6-10 reps
Decline Bench (barbell) - 4 x (6-10)
Incline Bench (barbell) - 4 x (6-10)

Flat Flys - 4 x 6-10
Decline Flys - 4 x 6-10
Incline Flys - 4 x 6-10

Pushdowns 4 x 6-10
Pulldowns 4 x 6-10
Over-head extensions 4 x 10
Skull Crushers 4 x 6-10
Dips 4 x 15

Day 2 - Legs / Shoulders / Traps

Squats 4 x 6-8
Hamstring Curl 4 x 6-10
Single Leg Press 4 x 6-10
Dead Lift 4 x 6
Calf Raises 5 x 15

Shoulder Press 4 x 6-10
Lateral Raise 4 x 10
Front Raise 4 x 10

Barbell Shrugs 4 x 8 and hold 30 sec
Dumbell Shrugs 4 x 8 and hold 30 sec

Day 3: Back / Bi's

Pull Ups - 4 x 10
Single Arm Rows - 4 x 8-10
Machine Row - 3 x 8
Machine Pull Down (close grip) 3 x 8

Hammer Curls 4 x 8-10
Barbell Curls 4 x 8-10 or 21's
Preacher Curls 4 x 8-10
Reverse Curls 4 x 8-10


5 x 25 sit ups on decline bench
4 x 20 alternating sit ups on decline bench
4 x 20 hanging leg raises


You are seriously overtraining. If you do that routine and eat that much food, it will fuck you up. Find a routine by Christian Thibadeau or Chad Waterbury.

Good luck man.


3 miles on the treadmill??? Not very sport specific. When do you need to run 3 miles straight during a football game? You probably don't run 3 miles combined in a season.


You would want to focus more on functional strength and power rather than bodyparts. You my want to try westside for skinny bastards since it is a program built for football players.


Add to that, I'd rather you do sprints and stadium work as you don't need to spend long hours on the treadmill. An average football play is 6 seconds so you have to develop explosiveness, not marathn endurance.


To that, sport specific sprint distances, agilities and change of direction drills, drops, coverages, backpedal/forward sprint to fill the gap, get up and go, etc., etc.


For your diet read C.T.'s Carb Cycling Codex in this weeks articles. You'll find a formula for determining your maintenance daily calorie level. You have to add to that your training expenditures. I would guestimate that you could easily eat 2700 calories a day and still be 1000 cals under maintenance. Also read Lifting For Fat Loss. You want to stay in the 5-8 rep range and do big compound excersizes (instead of 45 kinds of curls).

I'm no expert but I know good fats are very important and can even promote weight loss--if you don't eat enough fat your body will think it's starving and retain all the fat you already have. Have 6 fish oil caps per day, some Flax or Udo's and eat lean meats, eggs, olive oil...for the rest.

Bump your protein up to 1.5 grams per body weight--about 300 grams is probably good. You probably want at least 100 grams of carbs--eat them early in the day and around your training--at least 50 grams (Surge) Pre and Post Lifting.

Your intake may look something like this: 170 g carbs, 300 g protein, 90 g fat. That's about 2700 cals, 25% carbs, 45% protein, 30% fat. Eat clean 5 or 6 times a day and do half that lifting (see other responses for a MUCH better program) and you'll still lose a pound or two a week. Trust me.


It'd probably be a good idea to do a leg-oriented mesocycle or two first, and work in sled runs and sandbag carries/farmer walks for conditioning. Extra leg mass will also make it easier to get the abs to come out without cutting the calories as much.