T Nation

New Guy Looking for Opinions!


#1

So as the title says I'm new to the forum and somewhat new to lifting. Been going to the gym consistently for a year now and looking to change up my routine. I'd like to get a few opinions on the new routine I've put together. It consists of 5 days in the gym and two resting days. Feel free to jump in and give me your opinions!

Day One: Chest
Day Two: Triceps
Day Three: Back
Day Four: Biceps
Day Five: Legs
Day Six/Seven: Active rest days

Wanted to keep it fairly simple this time so let me know what you guys think! I'll also be throwing a little cardio and abs in there every now and then. Just wondering is working each muscle group once a week enough to see some nice results? The last thing I want is to lose the muscle I've already put on.

My previous routine was only three days so I'll be working each group less but hopefully I'll be able to put more energy into them this way. Like I mentioned before I'll really appreciate any info/opinions you guys give me!


#2

That’s not a routine, that is a list of the days of the week, and some body parts. An example of turning that into a routine would be as follows.

Mon - Chest
4 x 8-10 flat bench (increasing weight when hit 10 on all 4 sets)
2 x 10 incline dumbbells
2 x 10 flat dumbbell flys
3 x 15-20 machine flyes

Do you see the difference? If you want advice, be as specific as possible. Right off the bat I am going to think you don’t know what you are doing, and should just follow a cut and paste routine for beginners. Something full body 3-4 days per week. Maybe Push/Pull/Legs rotating

So as such
M - Push
T - Pull
W - Rest
Th - Legs
F - Push
S- rest
S - Rest
M - Pull
T - Legs
W - Rest
Th- Push

See where I am going with this? Anyway, if you want more details, give more details.


#3

As Ecchastang says, this isn’t a routine by any stretch of anyone’s imagination. It’s missing every single important detail, like exercise selection, sets, reps, progression plan, recovery, nutrition etc.

The most important thing it’s missing is any kind of goal or measure of progress. Where are you now, and where do you want to be?


#4

Thanks for replying guys I see what you’re saying. Hopefully I got this right how does it look now?

Day One - Chest
4x10 flat bench
2x10 incline dumbbells
2x10 dumbbell flys
2x10 weighted dips
2 sets till failure push ups

Day Two - Back
4x12 bent over barbell row
4x12 wide grip lat pull down
2x10 standing lat pushdown
2x10 t bar row
Finish off with pull ups

Day Three - Arms
4x12 Triceps pushdowns
4x12 skull crushers
3x10 weighted triceps dips

4x8-10 barbell curl (increase when 10)
4x12 Cable curl
3x10 hammer curls
Finish with pull ups

Day Four - Legs
4x12 Squats
4x20 leg extensions
4x12 hamstring curl
Finish with standing barbell calf raise

Day Five - Off then repeat routine

This look any better? I’ve cleaned my diet up a lot and trying to get between 120-150g of protein a day. I’m 5’7" and 175lbs and guessing somewhere around 20% bf. I’d like to put on more muscle and lower my overall bf. And I’m guessing like Ecchastang said I should just increase the weight whenever I get to 12 reps for all 4 sets? Don’t be too critical if I got something wrong I’m trying lol Thanks in advance to anyone who replies I really appreciate your help!


#5

I agree with the above posters. I also think it would be much smarter for you to follow a proven routine designed by an expert rather than create one for yourself, at this stage. There are a million on this site, under “articles.”


#6

[quote]craze9 wrote:
I agree with the above posters. I also think it would be much smarter for you to follow a proven routine designed by an expert rather than create one for yourself, at this stage. There are a million on this site, under “articles.” [/quote]

Good call. You could try any of the variations on the 5x5 approach (Mark Rippetoe’s Starting Strength is probably one of the best ones) or Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1. Both of those should give you great progress for at least six months as long as you follow them exactly and don’t add stuff of your own. Get some more time under the bar in using a proven method before setting your own training out and you’ll get better results.


#7

[quote]Matt83 wrote:
Thanks for replying guys I see what you’re saying. Hopefully I got this right how does it look now?

Day One - Chest
4x10 flat bench
2x10 incline dumbbells
2x10 dumbbell flys
2x10 weighted dips
2 sets till failure push ups

Day Two - Back
4x12 bent over barbell row
4x12 wide grip lat pull down
2x10 standing lat pushdown
2x10 t bar row
Finish off with pull ups

Day Three - Arms
4x12 Triceps pushdowns
4x12 skull crushers
3x10 weighted triceps dips

4x8-10 barbell curl (increase when 10)
4x12 Cable curl
3x10 hammer curls
Finish with pull ups

Day Four - Legs
4x12 Squats
4x20 leg extensions
4x12 hamstring curl
Finish with standing barbell calf raise

Day Five - Off then repeat routine

This look any better? I’ve cleaned my diet up a lot and trying to get between 120-150g of protein a day. I’m 5’7" and 175lbs and guessing somewhere around 20% bf. I’d like to put on more muscle and lower my overall bf. And I’m guessing like Ecchastang said I should just increase the weight whenever I get to 12 reps for all 4 sets? Don’t be too critical if I got something wrong I’m trying lol Thanks in advance to anyone who replies I really appreciate your help!

[/quote]
Just based on your above post I would guess that you are fairly new to weightlifting. Being not overly critical, your overall goal of “more muscle and lower my overall bf” is very difficult if not impossible to achieve. This would require your nutrition to be absolutely honed in. Body recomps are doable, but they require a great deal of effort and are usually done by those who are more experienced. Someone who is relatively new to lifting would be better off focusing on a full body routine where you can build a strong foundation. By which I mean focusing on honing down your technique, learning what works for you, and getting your body adjusted to new, unfamiliar external stressors.

As far as nutrition, this will be the key in how fast or slow you progress. Just about anyone can get stronger with any routine, but your nutrition will be implemental in getting there healthy and quickly. By that I mean counting calories, having your macros set up, and hitting your protein intake. I would start off by reading the stickys in the nutrition section. There is a bountiful of great information that will be vital to your success. Although many users on this site will tell you to focus on the basics, and build until you build an appreciable amount of muscle before considering a cut. Right off the bat, the protein number you listed of 120-150grams will not even place your protein intake equal to 1g per bodyweight. You should be shooting to intake 1.5 times gram of protein per pound of lean body mass if you are looking to build.

I would advise you, as many others have, to switch to a full body routine (push/pull there are plenty to choose from), go through the nutrition section, get your fundamentals down (big 3)and focus on your nutrition. Making sure you take full advantage of your new gains, and eating plenty to grow. A wise man once told me that having great abs and nothing else, is similar to a great rack on a fat chick. Who cares?


#8

[quote]MarkKO wrote:

[quote]craze9 wrote:
I agree with the above posters. I also think it would be much smarter for you to follow a proven routine designed by an expert rather than create one for yourself, at this stage. There are a million on this site, under “articles.” [/quote]

Good call. You could try any of the variations on the 5x5 approach (Mark Rippetoe’s Starting Strength is probably one of the best ones) or Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1. Both of those should give you great progress for at least six months as long as you follow them exactly and don’t add stuff of your own. Get some more time under the bar in using a proven method before setting your own training out and you’ll get better results. [/quote]

Both solid programs. You have to realise that we aren’t knocking your program or saying you won’t get results from it with enough effort, simply that their may be a better way to reach your goals. These two programs have been shown to produce results time and time again.


#9

Just my opinion but anyone who misses out deadlifts from a routine entirely (unless for a good reason like injury) but has a whole day dedicated to ‘arms’ isn’t going to get amazingly far (at least for a beginner, although happy to admit to not being a bodybuilder so take what I say with a pinch of salt).

Invariably the guys who come into the gym and the very first exercise they do is biceps are among the smallest there. Infact I’ve yet to see a really small guy who comes in and smashes some seriously heavy compounds, which I think speaks for itself.

Also I probably would follow a set program as everyone is saying, although, having said that, I personally have never followed a program someone else has written for me, even when I first started, but once again what I say is far from gospel.


#10

Adding to the above, if you pick a pro routine follow as close tot the letter as possible. There’s usually a good reason plans are laid out the way they are, and modifications without a good understanding of what’s going on in the program or how you respond to the original layout is a recipe for lackluster progress, or even injury.

If I could turn back the clock I’d jump on the all of the above advice in a heartbeat.


#11

Thanks for all the great information guys! I’m going to find and stick to a routine that’s already been put together by someone who knows what they’re doing like you guys have been suggesting! Hopefully after that I can get the diet side of it figured out!


#12

Best of luck Matt! I’m new to the board as well! I wholeheartedly agree with everyone that’s been said so far. After lifting for 5 years now and being ALMOST done with my Exercise Physiology degree I am just now learning to put together my own SAFE programs that produce results. Remember, a clear goal is very important. Losing weight, bulking up (hypertrophy), and gaining strength all require different techniques and training styles. Do your research, be safe, but most importantly man…ENJOY IT!


#13

Just do 5/3/1 or madcow. If you reeealy want to do a split look up kingbeefs routine


#14

[quote]Matt83 wrote:
Thanks for all the great information guys! I’m going to find and stick to a routine that’s already been put together by someone who knows what they’re doing like you guys have been suggesting! Hopefully after that I can get the diet side of it figured out! [/quote]

You can even do your own thing, or use one of the templates on here, but for heaven’s sake find something that you will be dedicated to, that builds on the core lifts, and stick with it - DO NOT program hop like I did. It’s going to take more than a few weeks to see results, so scrapping everything and starting a new routine every 4-8 weeks is a recipe for insanity. I can’t stress this enough. Get your nutrition in order, there are plenty of resources on here for that too.

Do not pass go, and do not collect $200! If there are two pieces of advice I could give, those would be it.


#15

[quote]RampantBadger wrote:
Just do 5/3/1 or madcow. If you reeealy want to do a split look up kingbeefs routine[/quote]
End post…There is a reason why these two programs in particular are used with such great regularity, they produce results


#16

I think I’m going with the 5/3/1 like a couple of you suggested but just out of curiosity what do you think about this one? Found it over on BB.com.

Day 1: Biceps, Triceps, And Calves

Barbell Curl: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Hammer Curls: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Curls: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Close-Grip Bench Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Triceps Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Overhead Triceps Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Calf raises: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Standing Calf Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 2: Legs

Squats: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Leg Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Leg Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 3: OFF

Day 4: Chest And Triceps

Dumbbell Bench Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Crossovers: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Close-Grip Bench Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Triceps Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Overhead Triceps Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 5: Back And Calves

Bent Over Barbell Rows: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Lat Pulldowns: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Cable Rows: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Standing Calf raises: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Calf Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 6: Shoulders And Biceps

Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Front Dumbbell Raise: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Side Lateral Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Barbell Curl: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Curls: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Curls: 7 sets of 8-12 reps


#17

I don’t like it. I think it’s a waste of time to train calves (twice a week!), it’s all the same rep range, and probably more exercises / volume than you need. I mean, it’s not terrible, but at your stage you’re better off doing something with a clear progression model, in my opinion.

Starting Strength, Madcow, 5/3/1 all good options. It seems like your goal is mass, so consider Boring But Big template for 5/3/1 or check this out for more of a “bodybuilding” approach:


#18

[quote]Matt83 wrote:
I think I’m going with the 5/3/1 like a couple of you suggested but just out of curiosity what do you think about this one? Found it over on BB.com.

Day 1: Biceps, Triceps, And Calves

Barbell Curl: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Hammer Curls: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Curls: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Close-Grip Bench Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Triceps Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Overhead Triceps Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Calf raises: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Standing Calf Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 2: Legs

Squats: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Leg Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Leg Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 3: OFF

Day 4: Chest And Triceps

Dumbbell Bench Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Crossovers: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Close-Grip Bench Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Triceps Press: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Overhead Triceps Extension: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 5: Back And Calves

Bent Over Barbell Rows: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Lat Pulldowns: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Cable Rows: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Standing Calf raises: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Seated Calf Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps

Day 6: Shoulders And Biceps

Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Front Dumbbell Raise: 3 sets of 8-12 reps
Side Lateral Raises: 7 sets of 8-12 reps
Barbell Curl: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Curls: 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
Cable Curls: 7 sets of 8-12 reps[/quote]

Might be one of the worst programs I’ve seen in recent history. Seriously speaking, if I were you I’d stay far away from this program, or anything that closely resembles it. Stick to a more basic,fundamental one which emphasizes progression in your big lifts. Yes it won’t have anywhere near as much volume for your arms, but overall this program is lacking in volume for your back, legs. 26 total sets for an arm day?! and are hit twice a week? While back and legs are only are given 13 total sets respectively. I hope you do realize that working out your larger muscles (legs, back, chest) will reap much more benefits (size, strength) than focusing on smaller groups (arms). If you are just starting out or even have lifted before I still wouldn’t use this program.


#19

^ haha I just love working my arms idk what else to say. The other stuff isnt as much fun imo. I understand the compound exercises will yield better results in the long run so I’ll try to do more of those. Where can I get the 5/3/1 routines?


#20

[quote]Matt83 wrote:
^ haha I just love working my arms idk what else to say. The other stuff isnt as much fun imo. I understand the compound exercises will yield better results in the long run so I’ll try to do more of those. Where can I get the 5/3/1 routines?[/quote]

Will get you started, and there are a few other free templates on T-Nation, but I would recommend getting the ebooks. If you need any other help, the 5/3/1 forums on this site are very helpful, and Jim will often answer questions himself.

One thing to point out before you panic is that just because your TM only increases once a month, by 5-10lbs, doesn’t mean your hypothetical 1RM increases by this amount. Your 1RM can increase by far more than your TM.