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Old School Barbell Training, Advice Needed

. I just have a quick training question and any advice would be a massive help. Currently I have 2 sessions that I alternate usually 1 on 1 off approx 3-4 times a week. Session 1
Front squat
Bench press
Bb row

Session 2
Back squat
Overhead press
Bb row underhand

I do 3 sets in the 4-8 rep range and when I can do all 3 sets of 8 reps I add. Some weight. It’s all going well but as the weights are getting heavier and my rest is longer the sessions are extending. My question is would you split these up in a different way and add more sets or stay with what I’m. Doing.

Thanks in advance and sorry for the long message

Start a timer so your rests don’t run longer? That way you’ll be able to gauge that you managed more reps is because you’ve gotten stronger and not because you rested longer. And then the sessions will take the same amount of time.

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That’s definitely worth a try thanks

Any opportunity to superset or giant set it? Would that detract from your goals?

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Yeah it would to be honest. I’m aiming to get really strong just using the basic old. School barbell movements and it’s working as I’m. Progressing well and I’m adding size and shape which is the goal but the sessions are getting longer and my time is limited as. I work. Shifts and in between I have my 2 kids

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I’d consider reducing frequency of each lift. For example:

1- Back Squat: 3 x 3-5
2- Front Squat: 3 x 6-10
3- RDL: 3 x 8-12

1- Bench: 3 x 3-5
2- Overhead Press: 3 x 6-10
3- BTN Press: 3 x 8-12

1- Deadlift: 3 x 3-5
2- Bent-Over Row: 3 x 6-10
3- Chin-Up: 30 total in as little time as possible


How much time do you have to get a session in?

@bulldog9899 is asking a key question that effects things. I would consider changing to a 4 day split, starting with a compund movement and 2 auxiliary exercises. Splitting Upper/Lower is a time saver, it cuts down on warmup stuff and tends to keep you in one basic area or at most two basic areas of the gym with minimal loading/unloading. As the weights increase the tax on your CNS increases, and it also wipes your glycogen more thoroughly making it harder to be up sufficienlty for the next set without the bigger rest. Less reps over more sets also helps with that. Same work, but a little less drain per set.


Yeah I have been thinking about an upper lower split too. What are you’re thoughts.
Upper 1
Overhead press 5x4-8
Bb row 5x4-8
Bicep movement 3x 8-12

Upper 2
Bench press 5x 4-8
Under hand bb row 5x 4-8
Tricep movement 3x 8-12

For the main compounds I will only add weight once I can perforce all 5 sets of 8 with good form.

Lower 1
Back squat
Calf raises

Lower 2
Front squat
And some ab work

The lower sessions would be the same set out of reps and sets as the upper ones.

I think that looks like a decent plan. I’d probably not do both BB Rows, maybe some other shoulder work in place of one of them, but it depends on what works for you. And maybe overhead squats for ab work on Lower 2. They work the abs pretty hard and you can do them after stripping most of the bar weight from the Front Squats or RDL’s so there’s no real setup.

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Yeah I tries the first lower session today but instead used the 5x5 sets and reps and because there was inly 2 main compound exercises I found that I could really put max effort into them and felt better because of that.

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If it was me I’d probably do staggered super-sets, example: Front squat with bench & Deadlifts with ohp is also good pairing. Also, I wouldn’t be keen on doing BORS and rdls in the same sesh, especially since you’ll be doing deadlifts a few days later.

So, with what I’ve just explained I’d probably do

Session A:
Front squat + Bench press
Row variation + rdls

Session B:
Squats + pull-ups or chins
Deadlift + OHP

Also, with regards doing rdls, which I think are a great exercise if done with good form, I dunno if doing them as much as twice a week along side deads once a week is great idea tbh. With most exercises, I tend to find training anything from 2-3 times per week is pretty much the sweet spot, especially for strength gains, that being said, stuff that’s hard on your lower back I would say is an exception to this (unless you are lifting extremely light). It might be an idea to switch between RDLS & something like KB swings, since they work a lot of same muscles albeit with a much lighter load.