T Nation

Full Body 3 x / Week

I’m starting a new thread on this full body 3 x / week topic that Shugart got us all hooked on.

*** It seems as if Chris told us to jump off a bridge, half of us would immediately do it, and the other half would first ask how to work it in with ABBH before proceeding with the jump. ***

So I, Bastard F*ck [Sheeple] Guy, have started a full body 3x/week MWF program. It was indeed time for a change. And this works in well with my Tue-Thu night class. And I’ve never tried this. And I am in need of new funny gawks at the gym. AND this program makes way too much sense.

M W F: full body
T T S (all optional): intervals / calves / abs / flexibility
Sun: sit on arse and watch men in tight pants play grabass

I need some suggestions on set / rep combos for W and F. Here is the basic starting template:

lifts M,W,F:
1 push press
2 squat (sub bulgarian sq until back recovers)
3 bench
4 row
5 db shoulder press
6 deadlift (sub lunge until back recovers)
7 inc db bench (or dip or rack lockout)
8 pullup

Monday 5 sets x 3 reps x 60 sec rest
Wednesday ?
Friday ?

I am leaning towards the following two basic set / rep schemes but am a bit lost as to which to put on Wed and which to put on Fri
A) 3 x 6 x 75
B) 2 x 8-12 x 90

My priorities remain:
1 fat loss
2 shoulder strength / size
3 fat loss
4 overall strength / size
5 fat loss

Suggestions and (of course) critique please?

Thanks all,
Bastard F*ck [Sheeple] Guy

I thought about “off day” training for a while, but decided against it. Not even abs and calves.

I’ve started my interview with Dr. Ellington Darden and he summed it up like this:

“It just makes sense physiologically, to work the muscular system as a whole, briefly – and rest it as a whole, too.”

Train it as a whole, rest it as a whole. Sounds good. So right now I think some intervals or light cardio is fine on off days, but to truly test this 3-day/full-body stuff out and keep the concept “pure”, I’d suggest keeping all weight training to the same workout.

Up to you of course, I’m just experimenting with this myself.

Chris:

How much different is this than what Bob Hoffman (Strength & Health publisher and Olympic Coach) suggested way back in the 1930’s?

Hello my 2 cents if you readin BFG

MON
Sqauts 3x5
d.bell incline press 3x10
leg curls 3x10
d.bell laterals 2x15
hanging pikes 3x12

WED
bears 4x5 (search website I think coach danny john)
chinnups 3x10
trap-bar shrugs 3x8
forearm work
weighted crunches 2x20

FRI
CLOSEGRIP BENCH 3X5
SUMO DEADLIFT 3X8
LEG PRESS 3X15
UPRIGHT ROWS 2X15
PREACHER CURLS 2X12
PUSHDOWNS 2X12
CALVES RAISES 3X20
THIN TUMMY VACUUMS 3 SETS

TUES/SAT-HIGH INTENSITY INTERVAL TRAINING
THURS/SUN-rest

I’ve been doing this off and on for about three years now (variations-just added the “BEAR’”) great workout.
On low rep sets under 6 make reps explosive.
reps 10-12 rhythmic
8 reps are controlled (i.e. rest pause)

workouts take anywhere from 45min-1hr.
rest between sets as needed, always try to increase weight with control.(sorry if this seems jumbled and hurried I’m at work).
good luck
fischer613

THURS/SUN-REST

[quote]ZEB wrote:
Chris:

How much different is this than what Bob Hoffman (Strength & Health publisher and Olympic Coach) suggested way back in the 1930’s?[/quote]

Don’t know. I was like -40 years old then.

Nah, I’m kidding. Been a while since I’ve read those old routines, but I’d guess there would be a lot of similarities. What’s I’m personally experimenting with here is a blend of proven classic programs combined with modern advancements.

I think that, in many ways, modern bodybuilding knowledge has been damaged by focusing on what steroid using genetic mutants do. And to an extent, pure bodybuilding has been affected in a few negative ways by the influence of the modern “strength coach.”

Don’t get me wrong, these guys have done a lot for the training world, but I think having us train like competitive athletes rather than recreational bodybuilders has been a mistake – to an extent. And of course there’s overlap too. There’s a fine line there and much depends on personal goals.

[quote]Chris Shugart wrote:
I thought about “off day” training for a while, but decided against it. Not even abs and calves.

I’ve started my interview with Dr. Ellington Darden and he summed it up like this:

“It just makes sense physiologically, to work the muscular system as a whole, briefly – and rest it as a whole, too.”

Train it as a whole, rest it as a whole. Sounds good. So right now I think some intervals or light cardio is fine on off days, but to truly test this 3-day/full-body stuff out and keep the concept “pure”, I’d suggest keeping all weight training to the same workout.

Up to you of course, I’m just experimenting with this myself. [/quote]

Thanks for the quick feedback all. I tend to spend a lot of time in planning the perfect workout. We know how often this pans out. I may very well ditch the Tues & Thur calve / ab work but will keep intervals, perhaps some gasp cardio, and especially the stretching. I am getting my back in gear by following the GYB(utt)IG program from here on T-nation - I don’t feel that I have the time to devote to this on lifting days and so will do Tues & Thur.

Part of me wants to do absolutely nothing on T T S & S. It’s the fat guy inside that wants to drink Beck’s all day, eat pistachios until my finger tips bleed, and chew Kodiak until my lip falls off. Since reading the article / rant on exercise (bbing) being a hobby, I have really thought about it a lot. With an addictive personality, I don’t know what is worse and am trying to choose the lesser of two evils: overdo the gym but really feel good mentally by getting that daily fix, or training for optimal results but feeling perhaps not so well. I feel like being on mental top takes priority. But still I am weaning myself off. And if results improve as many suggest, mental satiety will allow an even more balanced attack. Baby steps I suppose for now.

Looking forward to the interview.

Bastard F*ck Guy

I started this workout the first of September and have put about 20 pounds on my bench since then. Since i do football i also do plyo on tuesdays and thursdays. If you do this workout, you will need ALOT of rest(at least 9 hours). When i was doing it when i started, i wasnt going to sleep till around 12 and you realy felt it the next day.

I guess we are all sheep. But hey, this thing works. I am doing a full body workout 3 days a week, M W F. I am noting progress already.

Interesting still that no one has made any suggestions on set / rep schemes for W and F as I was hoping. Thanks to Chris and Fischer for the feedback. I will carry on as planned - I am actually a day behind schedule this week due to a f*cked Monday. Still open to suggestions and critiques.

Thanks,
Bastard [patiently waiting sheeple] F*ck Guy

[quote]BFG wrote:
Interesting still that no one has made any suggestions on set / rep schemes for W and F as I was hoping. Thanks to Chris and Fischer for the feedback. I will carry on as planned - I am actually a day behind schedule this week due to a f*cked Monday. Still open to suggestions and critiques.

Thanks,
Bastard [patiently waiting sheeple] F*ck Guy[/quote]

Hey dude…
I started the total body thing this week. I decided on a bastardized version of some of CW’s work and CS routines. Have just completed 2 such work outs. Taking the advice of CW and changing the tempo and rep scheme for each work out. M- max strength 5 x 3
W- endurance 3x15(or 20 or 25 depending)
F- CNS conditioning(I think that is what this was for), 3 x 6 as fast as possible.
Each work out uses different exercises.
M- Hack squats, Calf raises, Alternating Shoulder press, BP, DB Raise, seated alternating curl, Triceps press down, shrugs
W- leg extensions, leg curl, rev fly, inc. db press, seated rows, Szottmann curls, close grip bp.
F- Single leg Speed skater squats,
Romainian DL, military press, pull downs, flies, standing curl, french press.
Not much science to this, I think it makes sense.
I hope this helps…

[quote]mowgli1959 wrote:
BFG wrote:
Interesting still that no one has made any suggestions on set / rep schemes for W and F as I was hoping. Thanks to Chris and Fischer for the feedback. I will carry on as planned - I am actually a day behind schedule this week due to a f*cked Monday. Still open to suggestions and critiques.

Thanks,
Bastard [patiently waiting sheeple] F*ck Guy

Hey dude…
I started the total body thing this week. I decided on a bastardized version of some of CW’s work and CS routines. Have just completed 2 such work outs. Taking the advice of CW and changing the tempo and rep scheme for each work out. M- max strength 5 x 3
W- endurance 3x15(or 20 or 25 depending)
F- CNS conditioning(I think that is what this was for), 3 x 6 as fast as possible.
Each work out uses different exercises.
M- Hack squats, Calf raises, Alternating Shoulder press, BP, DB Raise, seated alternating curl, Triceps press down, shrugs
W- leg extensions, leg curl, rev fly, inc. db press, seated rows, Szottmann curls, close grip bp.
F- Single leg Speed skater squats,
Romainian DL, military press, pull downs, flies, standing curl, french press.
Not much science to this, I think it makes sense.
I hope this helps…[/quote]

mowgs - i just gave you that nick - hope you don’t mind - but with the exchange rate and all, i just can’t justify the extra digits - booyah

thanks for the feedback - yeah it looks like C-dub’s article came out EXACTLY in f*cking time - i have opted for the same exercises M W F but using the strength M / hypertrophy W / endurance F set and rep schemes - i think this will allow me to gauge overtraining fairly easy - i mean come on, how many exercises do we really need? i think the 8 i picked will work well for me for this program

Bastard F*ck Guy

here is my idea for a full body workout, please critique:

Monday- Strength day
all 6x3
deadlift
close grip bench
barbell curl
barbell wrist curl

Wednesday- hypertrophy day
all 4x8
A1 squat
A2 calf raise
B1 pullup
B2 military press
plate pinch grip for time
ab circuit

Friday- endurance day
all 3x15
dips
bulgarian split squats
1 leg good morning( a la Coach Davies)
rope pull to neck
chins
hanging leg raises

are there enough exercises? am I missing anything major?

i pulled this thread of mine out of the archives (from about a year and a half ago). no body answered it then, but it looks like some more people are messing around with whole body workouts so i thought i would re-post and add some to this discussion.

i wrote the following in april of 03:

hey guys,
tell me what you think.

my workout consists of alot of leg work via deads, squats and sprints. back and bi strength come from tons of chins/pullups. shoulder,chest and triceps are taken care of with bench and 1-arm presses. last but not least i do alot of core strengthening with the deads,squats,1arms and other core specific exercises( overhead squats,heavy sidebends,medicine ball work,bruce-lee’s/dragon flags,1-arm overhead squats,1arm deads,and any other fun things i can find).

i basically have 2 full body workouts that i alternate between.

workout a: snatches, squats, bench and widegrip chins.

workout b: snatches, deads, 1-arm press and narrow grip chins.

all lifts essentially follow the same pattern which is:
*warm up!
(warm up is what i refered to as “jump sets”, that is, jumping up the weight in sets of 3-5 then going for a heavy max. someone told me “thats how the westside template works” and thats how i got into training westside. but thats another story…)
*heavy isometric to failure
after a bit of experimenting i found that holding for 1/2 the time i would fail at was better. ie, if i could lock out and hold 495 for 15sec on bench then i would only hold for about 5 or 6 seconds. this seemed to be a great potentiator for my max effort lift which followed.
*90% max 1-3reps
*80% max 1-3reps
*70-75% max 5 reps
continue with 70-75% for sets of 5 until form breaks.

*i super set volume sets in bench and 1 arms with chins/pullups.

i DO NOT go heavy on volume with the snatches/cleans. i usually just do 3-4sets of three. going light and then working up to a decent weight, just focusing on form and explosion.

i include active recovery days after every heavy lift day and also use speed training for as many lifts as practical.

i track and periodize volume, wt, effort% ,work/time, etc. i shoot to up at least one of these each workout, but not all of them; no linear progression here.

there are alot of little things to tweak and track but i enjoy doing it.
here is another look at the same routine

day 1: strenght/volume a.
day 2: active recovery
day 3: speed and core
day 4: active recovery
day 5: strength/volume b.
day 6: active recovery

i insert active recovery days if im not feeling up to par( i use the snatches i do at the beginning of my working days to gauge my general sense of strength/fatigue) or eliminate them if im ready to go sooner.

ive always had alot of luck with a whole body, dont-train-again-til-everything-is-fresh type workout and this is my favorite so far. i get to work out everyday and keep my focus on basic and practical lifts. no independant tricep or bicep work for me. if i want to hit my tris i narrow my grip on bench, if i feel my bis are getting enough work i supinate my hands on chins etc. i also like to be able to hit my strength/high effort/intensity sets when i am fresh and ready to go, hence the pyramiding down in weight.
another note: on active recovery days i try to duplicate the lifts im doing on my heavy days so i usually am circuiting through really light dead,squats,1arms,pulldowns etc. this way im working those lifts everyday.
there are alot of variables to watch out for as far as overtraining is concerned but as long as you track it carefully and think creatively its doable.
i also like to use active rest days and speed days to work new lifts into my routine.
also, my speed days are done NO WHERE close to failure. just speed speed speed. low weight, low volume, just speed. you have to be carefull here cause the ballistic work is deceptive in its apparrent “light” weight. i know i might see better results if i upped it a bit here but its working great as is , right now.

ive been doing this for 3 weeks now and have been going up in everything each week. i just started massive eating last week and its making a huge difference too! on my way back to 210!
as far as things look, this program is going to be a keeper. i should be able to stay on it (with constant tweaking of course) for quite a while.

what do you think?

thanks,
ryan

well, thats the old post. ive tweaked it a bit since then and am looking at tweaking it some more now. i did this whole body workout before i started training west-side. i like them both A LOT. it was really cool to come across these principles during trial and error. it was really cool to “discover” others using them in their training templates as well.
havent been training seriously in a few months and im just getting back into the swing of things. ill be doing whole body workouts for a while. ill post my workouts starting in a week or so. im excited!

train hard.
ryan b.

Three times per week full body training works! If I can find the old Hoffman programs I will post them.

good stuff - thanks team

i just finished day 3 (remember i had to push each day back mwf became tts). wow this could be it for a while. my shoulders are feeling it a bit more than they should be - and in the joints, not really muscularly - i think i should drop the inc db bench all together or else halve the sets (i thought about dips but they seem much harder on my shoulders than any other chest/tri movement)

  • other than that i love it - i did do calves abs on the first inbetween day, a 8 or 9 sets for each - and then did them again on the second inbetween day with 3 or 4 sets each - it will take a while to shorten up / sync up the workouts - but i feel like a toyota - oh what a feeling - eh?

Bastard F*ck Guy

[quote]BFG wrote:
mowgli1959 wrote:
BFG wrote:
Interesting still that no one has made any suggestions on set / rep schemes for W and F as I was hoping. Thanks to Chris and Fischer for the feedback. I will carry on as planned - I am actually a day behind schedule this week due to a f*cked Monday. Still open to suggestions and critiques.

Thanks,
Bastard [patiently waiting sheeple] F*ck Guy

Hey dude…
I started the total body thing this week. I decided on a bastardized version of some of CW’s work and CS routines. Have just completed 2 such work outs. Taking the advice of CW and changing the tempo and rep scheme for each work out. M- max strength 5 x 3
W- endurance 3x15(or 20 or 25 depending)
F- CNS conditioning(I think that is what this was for), 3 x 6 as fast as possible.
Each work out uses different exercises.
M- Hack squats, Calf raises, Alternating Shoulder press, BP, DB Raise, seated alternating curl, Triceps press down, shrugs
W- leg extensions, leg curl, rev fly, inc. db press, seated rows, Szottmann curls, close grip bp.
F- Single leg Speed skater squats,
Romainian DL, military press, pull downs, flies, standing curl, french press.
Not much science to this, I think it makes sense.
I hope this helps…

mowgs - i just gave you that nick - hope you don’t mind - but with the exchange rate and all, i just can’t justify the extra digits - booyah

thanks for the feedback - yeah it looks like C-dub’s article came out EXACTLY in f*cking time - i have opted for the same exercises M W F but using the strength M / hypertrophy W / endurance F set and rep schemes - i think this will allow me to gauge overtraining fairly easy - i mean come on, how many exercises do we really need? i think the 8 i picked will work well for me for this program

Bastard F*ck Guy
[/quote]

BFG…
‘mowgs’?, works for me. I know that you know the original post/suggestion was to use different exercises for the three days. If I am correct you have 3 chest, 3 back, 1 leg and the deadlift(dedlft to cover all the bases). I think you are a bit too upper body concentrated, but you are working on shoulder recovery. It would be cool to see if either of us will make a big change in the forthcoming weeks, but best of luck.
Later…

I recently switched to full body workouts. Decided to do it since I was only getting to the gym 3 or 4 times a week anyway and I didn’t like the gaps in my 4 day split.
I split my workouts into a front plane, rear plane, and vertical plane workout days. 6 lifts of 4 sets of each lift each day.
Front Plane: Leg Extension, Squats, Bench, Incline, Front Laterals, Biceps.
Rear Plane: Deadlift, Leg curls, Barbell Row, Low Pulley Row, Rear Delts, Triceps.
Vertical Plane: Calf raises, Pullups, Lat Pulldowns, Military, Shrugs, Clean and Press.
I do abs on front plane day, hyperextensions on back plane day, and side bends on vertical plane day.
After 2 weeks I am pretty happy with it. I plan on doing it for 4 more weeks until I go on vacation and then decide what to do for the rest of the year after I get back.

So where’s all the “Told you SO!” posts from the HST guys?? :slight_smile:

Anyways, I’m REALLY liking this switch to a 3x per week routine, and am wondering how to manipulate it for fat loss…

My pipes are like a U-Boat but the midsection is like the Zeppelin…:frowning:

Any ideas how to incorporate cardio into this?

Shugart posted some evidence/suggestions that the body shouldn’t do a damn thing on “off” days for hypertrophy…does the same rule of thumb apply for leaning phases?

thanks!

If you want to do 3 FBW per week, imo you should do HST. Otherwise the low volume will not be sufficient to provoke muscle growth.

[quote]mowgli1959 wrote:
BFG wrote:
mowgli1959 wrote:
BFG wrote:
Interesting still that no one has made any suggestions on set / rep schemes for W and F as I was hoping. Thanks to Chris and Fischer for the feedback. I will carry on as planned - I am actually a day behind schedule this week due to a f*cked Monday. Still open to suggestions and critiques.

Thanks,
Bastard [patiently waiting sheeple] F*ck Guy

Hey dude…
I started the total body thing this week. I decided on a bastardized version of some of CW’s work and CS routines. Have just completed 2 such work outs. Taking the advice of CW and changing the tempo and rep scheme for each work out. M- max strength 5 x 3
W- endurance 3x15(or 20 or 25 depending)
F- CNS conditioning(I think that is what this was for), 3 x 6 as fast as possible.
Each work out uses different exercises.
M- Hack squats, Calf raises, Alternating Shoulder press, BP, DB Raise, seated alternating curl, Triceps press down, shrugs
W- leg extensions, leg curl, rev fly, inc. db press, seated rows, Szottmann curls, close grip bp.
F- Single leg Speed skater squats,
Romainian DL, military press, pull downs, flies, standing curl, french press.
Not much science to this, I think it makes sense.
I hope this helps…

mowgs - i just gave you that nick - hope you don’t mind - but with the exchange rate and all, i just can’t justify the extra digits - booyah

thanks for the feedback - yeah it looks like C-dub’s article came out EXACTLY in f*cking time - i have opted for the same exercises M W F but using the strength M / hypertrophy W / endurance F set and rep schemes - i think this will allow me to gauge overtraining fairly easy - i mean come on, how many exercises do we really need? i think the 8 i picked will work well for me for this program

Bastard F*ck Guy

BFG…
‘mowgs’?, works for me. I know that you know the original post/suggestion was to use different exercises for the three days. If I am correct you have 3 chest, 3 back, 1 leg and the deadlift(dedlft to cover all the bases). I think you are a bit too upper body concentrated, but you are working on shoulder recovery. It would be cool to see if either of us will make a big change in the forthcoming weeks, but best of luck.
Later…
[/quote]

Thanks for the feedback. I am still going to stick with the same movements and change the rep/set schemes. I’ll guinea pig this one and keep you all posted. As you noted, I need a little adjustment. I am dropping the incline db bench. (I am considering dropping the 2nd direct shoulder movement since they are involved with all upper body anyhow - I’ll see how I feel after this week. When I get the deads back in instead of this pansy shit I am doing now while my back repairs, I will probably want that 2nd shoulder movement even less.)

a) warmup 10 minutes intervals in 15 min
b) dynamic stretches - <10 minutes

  1. push press - shoulders - vert push #1
  2. squat - legs #1
  3. row - back - horizontal pull
  4. bench - horizontal push
  5. deadlift - legs #2
  6. pullup - vert pull
  7. db shoulder - vert push #2

My last workout was 55 minutes from start to finish including the intervals and stretching … what an amazing feeling. It’s only been a week, and I don’t know if I can ever go back!

I am still doing OFF day training despite CS’s suggestion. We’ll never know if I don’t try it. I am not dead set on the calve and ab training but am sticking with the intervals on at least 2 of the days. I do intend to take more weekends off to spend time with my new girl and to watch men in tight pants tear ACLs.

Someone asked about training this way for fat loss? After a week, this seems like THE way to train for fat loss. Talk about sweating balls - keep the rest intervals short and move rapidly from one exercise to the next. Do intervals. Try “OFF” days too - I can’t say yet that it works as it’s only been a week, but my body really feels good.

Bastard F*ck Guy