T Nation

Critique My Workout Plan


Spend my Sunday reading the article on designing a new workout plan, and the following is what I came up with, and I would appreciate it if you guys could point out anything I could improve, because I am still pretty clueless. I used the 4 day Upper/Lower split:

Upper Body Day One:
Bench Press: 3 x 5
Decline Bench Press: 3 x 5
Chin Up Variations: 3 x 8
Lat Pulldowns: 3 x 8
Rowing: 3 x 8
Dumbbell Bench Press: 3 x 8

Lower Body Day One:
Olympic Back Squats: 4 x 5
Romanian Deadlifts: 4 x 5
Good Mornings: 4 x 8
Leg Press: 4 x 8

Upper Body Day Two:
Military Press: 3 x 5
Close Grip Bench: 3 x 5
Arnold Press: 3 x 8
Skullcrushers: 3 x 8
Standing Curls: 3 x 5
Hammer Curls: 3 x 8

Lower Body Day Two
This is the same as day one

Just posting that made me realize how little knowledge I retained and how bad I believe I did at following the instructions given me, so any advice at all would be greatly appreciated. Be gentle, guys!


It looks like you have a focus on the compound movements right now, which is good; however your choice of isolation work seems to be a bit lacking. You have incorporated isolation movements for your bis and tris, but have missed shoulders. I would recommend adding in lat raises and/or front raises, delt flys, and maybe something like face pulls on your shoulders/arms day. These are fun to put into a nice little super-set.

Also, I think it's a good idea to have some single-leg work in there...like reverse lunges or bulgarian split squats. It will promote balance as well as help you monitor any imbalances between your legs. Maybe swap out one of your movements each lower day for a single-leg movement.

Are you doing any direct core work? Even 3 sets at the end of each leg day should suffice.


I'll work on adding the additions to shoulders and legs, thank you. I hadn't thought of direct core work, no, what would you recommend?


Just as a few thoughts to be taken with a grain of salt:

-Make sure that you're actively progressing in your pullups. In other words, add weight once you can do 8 reps for the 3 sets.
-Why not swap out the DB Bench for DB Incline? You already have BB Bench in there.
-This would just be me personally, but weighed dips hit the lower chest while also emphasizing the triceps. If these don't hurt your shoulders or anything, you might consider doing them instead of the decline.
-No deadlift?
-Think about varying your rep ranges between your leg days. What are your goals?
-I agree with the above poster with regard to shoulders. Maybe sub out the arnold press for some variants of lateral raises?

Also, I'm hoping that by "Military Press," you don't mean that you're going behind the neck?


Good split (very similar to what I started with), will keep you going for years if you eat for it :slight_smile:

The3Commandments, there is Romanian Deadlifts in there, which in my opinion are more suitable than conventional deadlifts for many lifters on a bodybuilding routine (in fact, there are many better varieties of deadlift than conventional ones for building good back thickness/width and hamstrings)

Agreed on the shoulder comments too.


First of all, thank you for the response!
-I'll make sure to start popping on a weighted vest as I found the pullups to be fairly easy
-I'll switch the standard Bench to the Incline
-I have Romanian Deadlifts on the lower body days, what would you like to change with these?
-My goals for leg days? I'm confused by the question, my goals are simply to get stronger without gaining unhealthy mass, but I'm not sure if that's what you were asking!
-That'd be possible to swap the lateral raises instead of Arnold press's, thank you!

In regards to the Military Press no, I'm going down under my chin to about my clavicle, is that correct?


What article did you read? Is it the one written by CT?


first of all what is your goal?

then i can criticise your workout according to your goals



My main goal is to increase strength, but I would like most of what I gain to be healthy muscle mass.


This is my new plan:
Upper Body Day One

a. Incline Bench Press-Three sets of five reps
b. Decline Bench Press-Three sets of five reps
c. Chin Up Variations-Three sets of eight reps
d. Lat Pulldowns-Three sets of eight reps
e. Rowing-Three sets of eight reps
f. Dumbbell Bench Press-Three sets of eight reps

Lower Body Day One/Two

a. Olympic Back Squats-Four sets of five reps
b. Romanian Deadlifts-Four sets of five reps
c. Good Mornings-Four sets of eight reps
d. Leg Press-Four sets of eight reps
e. Reverse Lunges-Four sets of eight reps

Upper Body Day Two
a. Military Press-Three sets of five reps
b. Close Grip Bench-Three sets of five reps
c. Lateral Raises-Three sets of eight reps
d. Skullcrushers-Three sets of eight reps
e. Standing Curls-Three sets of five reps
f. Hammer Curls-Three sets of eight reps
g. Rear Delt Flyes-Three sets of eight reps


Stop making plans and just lift the damn weights lol


to increase "pure" strength and pure density do no more than 3 reps per set

but to add a little bit of size do 4-5 reps

and only 3 - 5 sets

but make sure it is real heavy weight

your strength will increase dramatically

but it will take time to increase your muscle mass(about 6 months)

and only do these excersises 2 times a week for no more than 30 mins and with 2 min break each set

to save time do sper sets of antagonist paring

example do bicel curls - tricep pushdown = no break then after superset 2 min break


Haha, I've been lifting this whole time I'm just making small tweaks to the program where it's needed

When you say the exercises two times a week, you mean Upper body only twice and Lower body only twice, correct?


follow the article called "ripped, rugged dense" here on T-Nation


No need for program hopping. Trael, just do what you wrote out above.


My two cents, don't take advice from adityajuneja...Head over to the Rate my Physique section and check out his RMP for my reasoning.


Just want to quote this for emphasis. OP, you have gotten good guidelines and you are on a great start. Do not listen to adityajuneja. He's pretty well known as a troll around these threads. I'm sorry he had to interfere with such a productive thread. Just to demonstrate how much of an idiot he is...

He told you to get strong you have to do all your training with no more than 3 reps. Well, part of getting stronger is also improving your 5RM, your 10RM, etc. etc. Hell, what do you think the 5 is for in 5/3/1?...lol. All rep ranges have their place, ultimately, but for now, do what you wrote down and stay consistent.

Good to have you on board!