T Nation

Critique Routine

Whats up everyone? I made a new workout routine and plan on starting it next week, but wanted to see if any changes should be made first.

Stats: 21yr, 150lbs, 5’10

My goal is to increase size, strength, and still look cut.

              sets X reps

Day 1: Chest and Back
BB Bench Press 3x8
DB Incline Press 3x8
DB Flys 3x8
Pull-ups 3x8
Seated Cable Rows 3x8
DB Bentover Rows 3x8

Day 2: Legs and Abs
Squats 3x8
Leg Ext. 3x8
Leg Curl 3x8
Leg Press 3x8
Standing Calve Raises 3x8
Any 2 Ab Exercises

Day 3: Arms and Shoulders
DB Shoulder Press 3x8
DB Side Lifts 3x8
Preacher Curl 3x8
Concentration Curl 3x8
Tricep Kickback 3x8
Wrist Curls 3x8

Day 4: Rest

Day 5: Low Reps (Up weight each set)
BB Bench Press 4x4
DB Incline Press 4x4
Military Press 4x4
Straight Bar Curls 4x4
Skull Crushers 4x4
Pull-ups 4x4
Machine Rows 4x4

  • Also, I plan on rotating workouts like every three weeks, so I will be swapping the following workouts every few weeks:

DB Incline Press-----BB Decline
BB Bench Press-------DB Bench Press
Bentover Rows---------45-Angle Rows
Squats----------------Front Squats
Standing Calve Raises—Seated "
Shoulder Side Lifts------Lateral Raises
Tricep Kickback--------Dips

  • you get the idea…

I’ll also change my Day 5 sometimes and do high reps/low weight so I tear different types of muscle. I also forgot to mention deadlifts, shrugs, and trap pulls will be in the mix as well.

Finally, after I get bored with 3x8, I’ll probably do something like 4x6.

Well, I’m done. Please critique the routine and let me know what you think.

Thanks.

It’s not horrible… a bit much on the volume though. But still… split by movements or upper/lower than into bodyparts if your a beginner.

In all seriousness, just check out the beginner thread and check out one of the basic programs. Waterbury’s stuff is usually responded to well by beginners.

And why not deadlifts? Am I missing em’?

And most of the leg stuff is crap. Throw in some unilateral work and some deadlifting.
(obviously, squats are still good). Leg curls and extensions aren’t the most useful things out there, especially since your doing squats.

drop the leg curls and do stiff DL’s for the hams/glute.

that last day why no lower body as well make that day a total body day. A few BIG movments done heavy like a push a pull, a leg and an ab. then you have hit the full body twice a week. Once on a day of there own then on a full body day and have two days to rest prior to starting it again

Thanks for your reply. I’m not really a beginner, I have been lifting weights since highschool. (on and off) I have read the Beginner Thread; it was very informative. I started doing Waterbury’s BBB, but it didnt seem like I was working enough only doing 3 reps at a time and only a few workouts.

Deadlifts are good, I will be rotating them in and out of my routine. I read that constantly changing your routine shocks your body and increases your potential.

Thanks again.

Scrap all isolation movements as you don’t need them

Thanks Phil, I dont know why I dont have any leg on the last day. I certaintly meant to have some.

When you said a push, a pull, a leg, and an ab. Do you mean exactly four workouts? And should I still do 4x4?

Thanks.

[quote]IceCzecher wrote:
Thanks for your reply. I’m not really a beginner, I have been lifting weights since highschool. (on and off) I have read the Beginner Thread; it was very informative. I started doing Waterbury’s BBB, but it didnt seem like I was working enough only doing 3 reps at a time and only a few workouts.[/quote]

You weren’t using enough weight if you thought 8x3 isn’t enough work. Think about it. You’re doing 24 total reps whether you use 8x3 or 3x8. But you can use a lot more weight with 8x3, so your muscles are exposed to much higher loading. Not that 3x8 doesn’t have its place, but if you do it right, 8x3 will give great results.

[quote]Deadlifts are good, I will be rotating them in and out of my routine. I read that constantly changing your routine shocks your body and increases your potential.

Thanks again.[/quote]

Deads should be a staple in your routine. Taking them out won’t “shock your body.” Don’t listen to Weider.

[quote]IceCzecher wrote:
Thanks Phil, I dont know why I dont have any leg on the last day. I certaintly meant to have some.

When you said a push, a pull, a leg, and an ab. Do you mean exactly four workouts? And should I still do 4x4?

Thanks.[/quote]
No I meant on that last fourth day simply have four BIG compound exercises one push, one pull, one legs and one abs and call it a day go heavy you have enough volume and variety the rest of the week get in there and give one BIG exercise its due attention on this day. :slight_smile:

Phill

Sounds good. Is 8x3 going to increase size and strength faster than 3x8? I understand that the total number of reps is the same, but I want to end up cut too. Not just bulgy, definition is nice.

I mean, if you guys think BBB is a better routine than what I am currently doing let me know. I’ll do that.

I enjoy isolating muscles by doing specific exercieses. I was told to do this by the weight training coach in highschool. However, I’ve some recently that compound exercises are the way to go.

There is so much conflicting information on the web. In my experience, books aren’t that great either. (Mostly for guys that are overweight)

As always, thanx for all replies…

[quote]Konstantine wrote:
Scrap all isolation movements as you don’t need them[/quote]

Not true. Bi’s, tri’s and calf should be part of isolation movements.

First: upper body work

Your doing all your chest work before you touch the back, then on your second upper day all the back work is at the end once again. You need some balance here. Having a big strong upper back is extremly important to get big lifts and also for posture/shoulder health.

Tricep kickbacks, there are about a thousand tricep exercises that will allow you to heave more weight with better form (or in other words just work better!)

Second: Lower body

Squats- good

Leg extensions- Crap in my opinion but if you really like them for some reason they shouldnt be the second exercise. Get the big exercises that are going to work more muscle done and out of the way first.

Leg curls- Not as bad as extensions as they work the Hamstrings in a way you cant really do with compound movements. Glute/hamstring raises would be better if you can manage them but if you stick with curls do them at the end with extensions.

Leg press- Lots of people like, I personally don’t. I would suggest doing these with a quad focus as a third exercise, the second exercise being a compound movement that hits the glutes/hams.

abs- I’m sure you know this but just want to throw it out. Your abdominal muscles are not some odd muscle that needs hundreds of reps to see results. To get bigger and stronger you need to be working with weights that are challanging with a moderate number of reps.

Finally just another option, instead of leg extensions/curls do a unilateral leg movement

If I could suggest a few things:

Lower Body day- Like the others said, throw out the leg extensions, leg curl, and leg press. I like that you have squats in there. Something like this might work well.

Squat
RDL
Lunge/Reverse Lunge/Split Squat

You have 3 basic exercises but you’re hitting your lower body hard with compound movements; A squat variation, a posterior chain dominant exercise, and a unilateral exercise. If you feel you need some isowork on the calves, be my guest but that’s highly individual based on goals (I never work calves but then again I am an athlete and get more than enough stimulation for the calves through sprints, jumping, etc.)

Fridays, I also recommend switching to a total body day.

Deadlift (Variation stance, grip etc)
Pull/Chin Up
Flat/Incline Bench
Bent Row

You’re getting another posterior chain dominant lift, plus an upper body pull, upper body push, and some scapular retraction work. Place the exercise you need most work on first as this will help you work on these when you’re most fresh, as opposed to waiting til the end to do bent rows feeling totally exhausted.

Deadlifts are taxing, and if you are inexperienced doing these, I suggest working with no more than 5 reps per set at a time. Reason being, form usually goes to shit and what’s the point if you aren’t doing them correctly?

[quote]JNeves wrote:
First: upper body work

Your doing all your chest work before you touch the back, then on your second upper day all the back work is at the end once again. You need some balance here. Having a big strong upper back is extremly important to get big lifts and also for posture/shoulder health. [/quote]

Are you suggesting I do a chest exercise, then a back, then a chest and so on?[quote]

Tricep kickbacks, there are about a thousand tricep exercises that will allow you to heave more weight with better form (or in other words just work better!)
[/quote]
The reason I picked tricep kickback is because it does a pretty good job at isolating the muscle. I was trying to find an exercise comparable to concentration curls. So, I want an exercise for my triceps that mimicks an exercise for my biceps so they get worked equally. For example; bicep bar curl, and tricep bar pushdown. That kinda thing… What other tricep exercise will accomplish this?

Thanks for the advice!!!

One thing I am a little concerned about is lower back. I put Seated Cable Rows in my routine because it does work lower back, but I was wondering if I need more since bentover rows and cable rows do essentially the same thing minus the lower back aspect of it.

Here’s my alternative: keep the seated cable rows, drop the bentover rows and add good mornings instead. How’s that?

Also, I like the idea of straight leg deadlifts. This also emphasizes some lower back.

Thanks.