T Nation

Current Workout Critique Please

Here is my current workout plan for this month. Wondering if anyone cared to critique it. My goal right now is strength improvement with a little hypertrophy. Truthfully, I have always grown when doing strength programs such as 5x5 or something similar.

Day 1- Quad Dominant Legs/Hams/Abs
Front Squat or Narrow Stance Back Squat 5,4,3,5,4,3
Lunges 3x 12
Good Mornings or Stiff-Leg Deadlifts 4x6-8
Leg Ext-3x12-15
Leg Curl-3x8-10
Calves-3-4 sets of Donkey or Standing Raises

Day 2- Max Effort Chest/Back
A1)Flat DB Flies(Pre-Fatigue for chest)3x8
A2)Straight Arm Pulldowns (Pre-Fatigue Lats)3x8
B1)Flat Barbell Bench 5,4,3,5,4,3 wave
B2)Bent Row 6,5,4,6,5,4 or Inverted Bodyweight Row-6x8
C1)Hammer Strength Bench 3x10-12 or DB Bench 3x10-12
C2)One Arm DB Row 3x8 or HS Low Row 3x8
D)Bent Over Flies

Day 3)Rest

Day 4)Hip Dominant Lower Body/ Vertical push/ Vertical Pull
Deadlift(works as lower and vertical pull)-5,4,3,5,4,3,2
Hang Clean- 4,3,2,4,3,2
Standing Military Barbell Press-5,4,3,5,4,3
Pull-ups- 3x8-10 w/added weight
Calves-3-4 Sets of Seated Calf Raises

Day 5) Repetetive Effort Chest/Arms
Bench Press-3x12-15
Hammer Strength Press-1 set 12-15 Rest pause Style
BB Curls-3x6
Close-Grip Bench-3x6
Hammer Curls-3x8-12
Tri-Pushdown-3x8-12

Day 6) REST

Day 7) Rest or Repeat depending on how I feel

Feel Free to ask Questions or critique or make fun of my dumb ass if need be. That’s why I am posting.

Diet for those who are interested-2200-2500 cals/day maintenance level calories

less than 100g carbs
150-200g protein from chicken/turkey/lean beef/eggs/protein shakes
Fat to make up rest of cals-natural PB, Meats, Avocados/ Flax

Supps: Creatine 5 g/day, ZMA 4-6 caps at bedtime, Fish-Oil-8-12 caps/day, Multi

Needs more shoulders in my opinion. If you’re looking for strength then you need lower reps, and probably fewer exercises. Why maintenance calories? Say goodbye to hypertrophy if you’re not adding calories for growth. Your diet looks more like a slow cut diet.

Yeah, whats with the sets of 8? Also, what’s with all the pussy, non-strength oriented lifts like:

Leg ext
Leg curl
DB flies (pre-fatiguing? probably the worst way to lift heavier, which is the key to getting strong)
Bent over flies
Curls
hammer curls
tricep pressdowns

sounds like a ton of bullshit you don’t need. If you are training for strength and the hypertrophy that accompanies it then get those reps down and sets up. And go for the big lifts that you can actually get legitimately strong on. If you can’t lift some decent weight then it’s not really a strength lift. like flies, you will never lift decent weight with good form (or poor form) and that makes it a accessory lift. Use all those little bullshit lifts later to even out imbalances and deload. do you really need that many curls?

the format of the program is good but the specifics of it are pretty random.

Your diet looks ok. You may want to get a carb load in once a week on your leg day to get that growth in.

have fun

-chris

Hey man! Well your program has a great structure but I would have to agree with the boys above! You really dont need all thoses single movement accesoriy lifts! Focus on your Big Complex Ones! and definaly add some more soulders, standing military press is a good start but try out seated military press, Behind the neck press or front raises! But thats just a thought. Also I would sugest upping those calories at least to 3000 on lifting days! keep at maintenance on your off days you wont gain any fat your lifting 4-5 days a week so you should be fine! All in all it still looks like a good program tho! Best of luck man! Happy lifting!

Thanks for the replies guys. I guess you all are right, I was having an argument in my head as to if I wanted to get stronger or do a slow cut for summer. I will definitely up my calories to 3000 or so.

The reason I have recently started doing the chest flies prior to benching is that I’m triceps dominant when I press so my chest doesn’t get much stimulation. By doing the flies beforehand I can feel a better squeeze in the chest without fatiguing the triceps at all for my working sets. Does this make sense to anyone or should I just drop it?

As for the lack of shoulder exercises I have also been doing MMA once or twice a week for a couple hours just for fun and all the punching and grappling really burns out my shoulders. Thinking of dropping this as well though.

Thanks for the comments.

That makes sense doing the flies first! Thats about the only thing to work your chest without hiting your tricepts! If its working for you stick with it! Cabel crossovers might be an Idea as well???

maybe my brain isnt working right now, but pre-fatiguing the chest before a press seems like a good way to negate the amount of force the chest can contribute to the lift, thus resulting in even more triceps involvement.

it would seem to me that you want to eliminate triceps involvement as much as possible when doing a press if you want to target the chest more.

i understand the benefits of pre-fatigue, but this still seems backward to me for your particular situation.

i could be having a brain-fart right now though.

what about starting with 3 sets of muscle-failure dips and then lift with a wide grip? this way you target both chest and tris to begin with, especially the tris, recruiting the motor nuerons pre-press, and allowing the chest to do more of the lift with the higher volume excersise.

Its bodybuilding technique, that guy (rightly) has a problem with it because you said it was a strength orientated plan…

I personally get you aren’t such a purist-in one camp or the other, but some are.

The pre-fatigue will work like you stated, kinda, kinda backwards… but it does mean you use less weight though, and while that can be beneficial from a BB perspective, it is not from a pure strength perspective.

If your goals are really as stated, you need a different program, if your goals are hypertrophy with a little strength, then you will be fine! lol!

Advocado is a strength guy i assume and he correctly has issue with your non-strength - strength workout!

Joe

[quote]Joe Brook wrote:
Its bodybuilding technique, that guy (rightly) has a problem with it because you said it was a strength orientated plan…

I personally get you aren’t such a purist-in one camp or the other, but some are.

The pre-fatigue will work like you stated, kinda, kinda backwards… but it does mean you use less weight though, and while that can be beneficial from a BB perspective, it is not from a pure strength perspective.

If your goals are really as stated, you need a different program, if your goals are hypertrophy with a little strength, then you will be fine! lol!

Advocado is a strength guy i assume and he correctly has issue with your non-strength - strength workout!

Joe[/quote]

LOLverine! Yeah I don’t feel so strong with my brand new rolled ankle though. But It is the case that a good strength session looks much different from what is going on in the OP’s outline (chart? table?).

When you write it down a strength session looks like this:

Power clean: 7x3

Mil press: 6x4

Front squat: 4x3 4x2

box jump

see how if you wrote out all the sets it would look like a sideways rectangle? more sets, less lifts. Neural efficiency leads to real strength gains. repetition at heavy weights is the key to getting strong while keeping fatigue down.

Whereas if you write down a mass program it looks much longer in that there are more lifts so as to keep training beyond fatigue by using new lifts. There are also less sets because each set typically goes to fatigue or failure.

Two different ladies and it’s best not to go for the threesome with the two of them.

-chris

Although i mix and match with fun and results regularly - purely for more muscle obviously… but i still love hitting a new pr, as low as they are in comparison to a purist i’m sure!

You are right, my programs tend to look like a rectangle stood up, long, lots of angles, lots of intensity techniques, pre and post fatigue (Shock! Horror!), less sets, 2-3! rest/pause ALWAYS! statics…etc… :wink:

I do love to do a pure strength macro though… Squat, DL, Military/Clean+P, Bench, BB Row - w/ accessories.

Joe

yeah, I think it’s important to add in all the angle with the mass gaining efforts. If it facilitates more micro damage to the muscle fiber then that is what you want.

And pre post fatigue is shocking and horrific. That shit hurts! speaking of which my 100 rep efforts at dips and chins yesterday hurts like a bastard today. Shows that I have not done them in 2 months due to a focus on O-lifts.

-chris

Absolutely! I love to throw in a 100 reps effort occasionally, it really brings out the doms, and i dont care what ppl say… i love to ache, it tells me i am working harder than i am adapted to!
a 100 reps set-shit i’ll never be adapted to that!

Joe

Well basically, my goals are to get fricken hyooge and strong. Since I have always grown doing strength-type workouts I assumed if I set it up like a strenght workout, and added a couple of extra sets for hypertrophy after my main strength movements, it would work well.

So far I have done this workout for a week and a half-starting last Monday so it is too early to tell how it is working so far, but I am going to cut out the pre-fatigue stuff and drop a few of the 8 rep sets. Also decided to up the calories a bit, still don’t want to get too fat for summer so being careful with the carbs.

Also wanted to mention that I am 19 years old, take some helpful supps like fish oil and ZMA so recovery has never been a real problem for me so I have been able to keep intensity pretty high while still working out with a decent frequency. When I go for pure strength gains, I do a total body workout 3x a week.