T Nation

New to Bodybuilding, Need a Plan


I'm new to bodybuilding, not really that new to lifting. I've been lifting for a couple of years and my best lifts are squat 335x2, bench 230x4, and my deadlift is a question mark as I haven't deadlifted in quite a while, but it's probably over 315 for sure. I want to get into bodybuilding now but how is a big gray area for me.

Should I start with a program that details my lifts and just try to force progression on that program? Should I stick to strength type programs and use my accessory lifts as bodybuilding? Are there specific programs that are percentage based, maybe w/ spreadsheets, that are bodybuilding based that could help me?

tl;dr- I'm new to BB and need a plan, so I've come to you guys, naturally, for help.




I don’t think you’re so new if you have those lifts.


Depends on your strengths, weaknesses, and goals. Also depends on bodyweight – if you weigh 150 lbs your lifts are pretty decent, if you weigh 220 not so much. Assuming you’re somewhere in between, you will still want to incorporate strength progress on the big lifts in your training, even if your goal is bodybuilding / mass.

Here are some options from this website:


Well if you are interested in bodybuilding then I would suggest doing a bodybuilding routine and actually train like a bodybuilder.

Lots of articles on here are strength based but Clay Hyght still likes to keep things real and he talks about how real bodybuilders actually train. Have a read of these links then you can put it altogether and do an actual routine he has in the third link.