Critique my workout

Hello all. I’m pretty new to T-Mag, I’ve been reading previous issues and the forum for a couple weeks. I thought I’d post my workout and see if anyone has any advice on it. I’m 16 years old, about 5’11’', and only 125 lbs. (Yes, you read that right, I’m THAT skinny). Obviously, my gaol is to gain weight. I’ve been lifting inconsistently for about a year, but have made no size gains, and some stength gains which have been pretty much lost. Anyway, the workout is very similar to the “Beginner Blast off program”. Here it is:

Day 1: Chest/Tri
DB bench: 3 sets of 10-12
DB Flys: 3 sets of 10-12
DB lying tri extentions: 3 sets of 10-12

Day 2: Back/Biceps
Situps: 2/3 sets
Deadlift from allitle below knees: 3 sets of 10-12
DB rows: 3 sets of 10-12
DB curl: 3 sets of 10-12

Day 3: Rest

Day 4: quads/hams
Squats: 3 setf os 10-12
Lunges: 3 sets of 10-12
Ham Curl: 2/3 sets of 10-12

Day 5: Shoulders/calf/abs
DB press: 3 sets of 10-12
DB Shrug: 2/3 sets of 10-12
Standing Claf raises: 3 sets of 10-25
Situps: 2/3 sets

Day 6: Rest

Day 7: Rest

-Thank you for your time and help, Julian.

What kind of gym do you go to? You have a lot of DB exercises, is that personal preference or equipment limitations?

throw in some more ab exercises, some pullovers or chins, some cardio on your off days and replace the ham curl with a deadlift

Well, first of all, what is your diet like?? At your weight, you should be eating everything!!!

Also, I would change my workout so that you are doing much heavier weights and limit your reps to 4-6 per set

Welcome to the boards, I am sure you will find a lot of good info/help. You said your goal is to gain wait, so diet comes first. You may want to search “massive eating” or any other bulking articles here on T-mag.(see the FAQ). I would suggest that you lower the reps and raise the weight. Something like 5x5, 8x3,or 10x3. Search ABBH by Chad Waterbury for a good program. If you want to make your own program, try to limit the isolation movements and stick to big compound movements. Work the back of your body(p-chain) alot. Hams, glutes, lower and upper back are many people’s weak points. Stick to bench, squat, deadlift, close grip bench, rows of all kinds, stiff leg and romaninan deadlift, goodmorning, and other multi-joint exercises. Hopefully this wasn’t to confusing, I am kind of in a hurry. Im sure you will get a lot of other resopnses from people a lot more knowledgeable than me. Good Luck, and with dedication, effort, and patience I am sure you will reach your goals.

We need to critique your diet as well. Based on the information you’ve provided, I’m assuming that you have a very fast metabolism. dfuniversal is correct that you need to eat everything that you can. In addition, you need to be mostly sedentary when you are not at the gym. Your hardwork in the gym will go unrewarded if you are not maintaining a diet that will support the gains that you are trying to make.

Julian L,

Welcome to T-mag forum!

You are quite thin for your height. Based upon the information that you have given me I would like to see you stick exclusively to the big basic movements.

I would put you on a three times per week plan, every other day. All three days do full body workouts.

Do these exercises:

  1. Squats-5 sets-10, 10, 8, 8, 6.

  2. Deadlifts-5 sets- Similar reps scheme as squats.

  3. Barbell Standing Press-5 sets, Keep the reps in the 8 to 10 range.

  4. Pull-ups- 5 sets of one, or two reps short of your max on each set.

I know this is nothing fancy, but right now it’s just what you need. There will be plenty of time for fancy shmancy after you have gained 40lbs of muscle.

Do this for 6 weeks or so-Then have some fun and change these four movements for another four basic multi-joint movements. Things like Barbell Row, T-Bar Rows, Cleans, Front squats, Zercher squats etc. Check the T-mag search engine and you will have more great exercises!

And remember to eat about 150 grams of protein per day spaced out into 6 meals. Never be hungry!

If you stick with this style of training for the next 12 to 24 months you will really good about yourself, as you will gain weight and plenty of muscle!

Good Luck, and if I can ever help you just PM me.


Thanks for all the suggestions guys. There are no pullups/pulldowns because I don’t have the equiptment. I workout in a small room where all I have is a bench that can be used to squat off of (no safety bars) and free weights. I’m using DBs cause that is what the begginner routine said, same reason for the given rep scheme. I’ve read almost everywhere that 8-12 is the best rep range for size, so I’m confused why you guys are saying I should do lower reps when size is my main concern? ZEB, the program you suggested looks good, but I know for a fact that I’d be sore as hell after with 1 day of rest between workouts, thats why I like the split I’m on. The only reason I am reluctant to change my routine is I have been a CRC (chronic routine changer) in the past, and just want to stick to something for a while. But if everyone really thinks I should change, then I would do so. My diet is a work-in-progress but heres what I’m doing/trying to do:

Meal 1: 2 hard bioled eggs, carantion instant breakfast with milk
Meal 2: Big sandwich (usually turkey, roastbeef, cheese, lettuce), 2 pints of chochlate milk
Meal 3: Tuna snadwich and milk
Meal 4: Dinner, changes all the time, but is always something healthy and full ex- pasta with meat sauce, bread, and veggies
Meal 5: Protein shake

Sorry for such a long post, thanks for all the help,


I think that your diet is where you can get the most improvement. First, I believe that you are eating an insufficient number of calories and the wrong mix. You’ll need to get some Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) into your diet; flaxseed or fish oil will work. Second, replace the “instant breakfast” with a true MRP. Throw a banana in with meal 1. Throw some veggies or fruit in with meal 3. Go heavy on the meat sauce in meal 4. Add one (and possibly two) additional meals for a total of 6 to 7. Also, how much water do you ingest daily? What do your post-workout meals look like and when, in relation to your workout, are they ingested?

T-Bone, your right on the flaxseed oil, I’ll start that right away. I’m also going to add a banana to meal 1 and try to change the instant breakfast to a real MRP (money is low, so its hard) as you suggested.
My workout days usually have the same meals, just in a different order, I always have a protein shake 5-20 minutes after I lift.
The meal I gave for meal 4 was just an example, but it is always well balanced and I try to go heavy on the meat/protein, if theres little or none, I just drink some milk and have some turkey with it.
Thanks for all the help, I’m open to any more input.

First off all you have to eat properly.
Second you must learn the basic exercise with a medium number of reps, 2 or 3 working sets,6-8 reps for the upper body, 6-12 reps for lower body.
Third, to put on mass, you need to recover properly.
Workout 1
Romanian deadlift
Barbell or db bench press
Barbell or db row
72 hours later:
Workout 2
Barbell or dbs Military presses
Barbell curl
72 hours later Workout 1 etc.
If it is not safe with your equipment to perform Squats, you may try dbs Squat or Barbell Hack Squat. You may use a 3 months cycle beginning with easy weights. At each workout,try to add 5% more weight primarily to squat, bench press and deadlift. After 3 months take a week off. Then begin a 2nd cycle with 80% weights of your best performance in the 1st cycle. Keep on adding weight etc.
Best luck !