T Nation

Overall Hypertrophy Program

OK. I need some critique of my training.

My number one goal is MASS.

right now, this is what I’m doing. ALL SETS ARE MAX WEIGHT POSSIBLE. I’ll start with 200 lbs… if it’s easy ill bump it to 205/210, if it’s hard to get the 5th rep i’ll drop it to 190/195

Day 1: Chest
BB Bench 5x5
DB Flies 5x5
Incline Bench 5x5
Decline Bench 5x5
Incline Cable Flies 10x3

Day 2: Back
Lat Pulldown 5x5
1-arm Rows 5x5
T-Bar Row 5x5
Cable Row 5x5
Deadlifts 5 reps 3 sets, then 3 sets of 2-3 reps

Day 3: Arms
Standing Straight Bar Curls 5x5
Standing DB Curls 5x5
Preacher Curls 5x5
Hammer Curls 5x5
OVH DB Tricep Ext (French Presses) 5x5
Skull Crushers 5x5
Dips 10x3
Tricep Pushdown 10x3

Day 4: Shoulders & Traps
Military Press 5x5
Standing Alternating DB Press 5x5
Seated DB Press 5x5
Lateral Raises 10x3
Front DB Raises 5x5
DB Shrugs 10x4
BB Shrugs (Smith Machine) 10x3
Upright Rows 5x5

Day 5: Legs (need one more excercise… advice?)
Squats 5x5
Lunges 10x3
Leg Extension 5x5
Leg Curls 5x5

Day 6: Rest

Repeat

What do you all think?

Seriously? 20 sets per bodypart?

Did ya ever wonder how the Bill Starr/Starting Strength program et al has put on tons of muscle over many years with only 5 sets per “bodypart” 3x per week?

At about 6’ feet tall and 180 lbs, you don’t need that much work, not sure anyone does.

Cut it in half and it’s still too much work.

What would you suggest then?

Honestly, I would read this very thoroughly and try it out.

http://www.geocities.com/elitemadcow1/index.htm

There’s no mass without strength and there’s no mass OR strength without a surplus of calories. If you check out the table of contents and have some time set aside, this link tells you more than 10 years of muscle magazines. It’s all covered and it’s no-nonsense, no crap.

You’ll aslo find a hell of a lot of people that have used and refrenced this material on this very site.

You wont last one week with that shit.

Dude, pavel hates you!

Seriously though…I wish more people would accept what youre saying. if you aren;t a naturally freakishly strong fucker who deadlifts 400-500 after a month of training (and so on)…

Youre going to need to add at least a few tens of pounds of lean mass to gain a crapload of strength. (small gains of strength can always be made, depending on your ability to push yourself initially, pain threshold and neural efficiency whatever)

On other forums I visited, there’s always some dude who wants to stay at the SAME weight and triple all his lifts (AFTER a year of training) because he knows so-and-so powerlifting teen sensation who was able to lift as much at such-and-such weight.

[quote]derek wrote:
There’s no mass without strength and there’s no mass OR strength without a surplus of calories. [/quote]

[quote]kayveeay wrote:
OK. I need some critique of my training.

My number one goal is MASS.

right now, this is what I’m doing. ALL SETS ARE MAX WEIGHT POSSIBLE. I’ll start with 200 lbs… if it’s easy ill bump it to 205/210, if it’s hard to get the 5th rep i’ll drop it to 190/195

Day 1: Chest
BB Bench 5x5
DB Flies 5x5
Incline Bench 5x5
Decline Bench 5x5
Incline Cable Flies 10x3

Day 2: Back
Lat Pulldown 5x5
1-arm Rows 5x5
T-Bar Row 5x5
Cable Row 5x5
Deadlifts 5 reps 3 sets, then 3 sets of 2-3 reps

Day 3: Arms
Standing Straight Bar Curls 5x5
Standing DB Curls 5x5
Preacher Curls 5x5
Hammer Curls 5x5
OVH DB Tricep Ext (French Presses) 5x5
Skull Crushers 5x5
Dips 10x3
Tricep Pushdown 10x3

Day 4: Shoulders & Traps
Military Press 5x5
Standing Alternating DB Press 5x5
Seated DB Press 5x5
Lateral Raises 10x3
Front DB Raises 5x5
DB Shrugs 10x4
BB Shrugs (Smith Machine) 10x3
Upright Rows 5x5

Day 5: Legs (need one more excercise… advice?)
Squats 5x5
Lunges 10x3
Leg Extension 5x5
Leg Curls 5x5

Day 6: Rest

Repeat

What do you all think?

[/quote]

Looks like a cluster-fuck to me. Way too much volume and redundancy on chest and everything else except maybe legs. Why the fuck do you need two types of flys at 6’1" 180. Four different curl variations…please, is this a joke. How much intensity do you maintain on that last set of hammer curls? You have only one exercise for legs that utilizes hamstrings as the primary mover, and it’s leg curls.

Your program sucks.
Do WSFSB, or Madcow, or one of CT’s programs. Those are examples of good programs that work. Yours will lead to failure and not much else.

If youre beginning madcow, first start with the classic 3x5 (rippetoe) and then move on to 5x5. Stronglifts has a good setup but I hate mehdi’s views on training (particularly his opinion on using dumbbells for benching as being inferior to using a barbell)

4 x 12 with heaviest weight possible on these lifts.

squat
pull ups
db bench press

…will yield more results. seriously.

Why do you feel that 4x12 will yield better results compared to 5x5?
Any rep-set range will yield mass gains with a caloric surplus, but the use of 5x5, especially for those who haven;t established a size and strength base yet has been documented longer.

Also restricting yourself to a range of 12 reps for too long will eventually lead to insufficient activation of fast twitch fibres…NOT a good idea when training for mass alone. Nothing wrong with beginning with 4x12 and increasing load a la HST and adjusting sets and reps as you progress with load tho.

[quote]ZeusNathan wrote:
4 x 12 with heaviest weight possible on these lifts.

squat
pull ups
db bench press

…will yield more results. seriously.[/quote]

[quote]tribunaldude wrote:
Why do you feel that 4x12 will yield better results compared to 5x5?

Any rep-set range will yield mass gains with a caloric surplus, but the use of 5x5, especially for those who haven;t established a size and strength base yet has been documented longer.

Also restricting yourself to a range of 12 reps for too long will eventually lead to insufficient activation of fast twitch fibres…NOT a good idea when training for mass alone. Nothing wrong with beginning with 4x12 and increasing load a la HST and adjusting sets and reps as you progress with load tho.

ZeusNathan wrote:
4 x 12 with heaviest weight possible on these lifts.

squat
pull ups
db bench press

…will yield more results. seriously.

[/quote]

ZeusNathan had a long argument AGAINST 5x5 for beginners for some reason, it went on for several pages.

It’s beyond me as to just why, never saw his point, but I’ve only been working in this business for over 10 years so what would I know?

I will say, in his defense that his 4x12 abreviated workout WOULD work better than that marathon workout from the OP. Just not better than a simple 5x5.

Hell, Matt Furey’s bodyweight circuits will work better for size than that nonsense he put out in the first post. I would be interested in hearing ZN’s ideas on this though. From his posts he strikes me as a predominantly fast twitch guy who doesn;t believe that he responds efficiently to moderate volume (his deadlift video, his RMP thread, his strength levels vis-a-vis his weight). I feel his dietary regime is at fault though.

You can;t go wrong with a classic 5x5 as long as you add weight to the bar progressively. Its such a nice balance between intensity and volume that it will work for almost anyone to a large extent.

[quote]derek wrote:
ZeusNathan had a long argument AGAINST 5x5 for beginners for some reason, it went on for several pages.

It’s beyond me as to just why, never saw his point, but I’ve only been working in this business for over 10 years so what would I know?

I will say, in his defense that his 4x12 abreviated workout WOULD work better than that marathon workout from the OP. Just not better than a simple 5x5.[/quote]

Kayveeay, This program is awful. You are talking 20 sets of 5 reps on chest day. It is not possible to keep your intensity at 100% for that long. I would cut it down to 10 total sets. You would be overtraining by following that program and not grow much at all. This is the typical newbie workout, way too much volume and not enough rest between bodyparts.

Understand that a good pump does not mean you will grow. If you insist on doing a split workout then try the one suggested in the newest Beast Building part 3 article. I would personally reccomend doing a total body workout three days a week. If that doesnt work then you are clearly not eating correctly or eating enough…period

Nothign wrong with a split workout. I personally prefer a body part split routine, but the OP needs to get his lifts up and fast. He would do well with the 5x5 template for a while (at least) before his progress on that comes to an end. Once he is able to recruit his muscles properly in various lifts and knows how how to do the exercises for his structure with his goals in mind, he can drift to a body part split which is better suited for bbing purposes.

[quote]Mikey400 wrote:
Kayveeay, This program is awful. You are talking 20 sets of 5 reps on chest day. It is not possible to keep your intensity at 100% for that long. I would cut it down to 10 total sets. You would be overtraining by following that program and not grow much at all. This is the typical newbie workout, way too much volume and not enough rest between bodyparts.

Understand that a good pump does not mean you will grow. If you insist on doing a split workout then try the one suggested in the newest Beast Building part 3 article. I would personally reccomend doing a total body workout three days a week. If that doesnt work then you are clearly not eating correctly or eating enough…period[/quote]

[quote]derek wrote:
tribunaldude wrote:
Why do you feel that 4x12 will yield better results compared to 5x5?

Any rep-set range will yield mass gains with a caloric surplus, but the use of 5x5, especially for those who haven;t established a size and strength base yet has been documented longer.

Also restricting yourself to a range of 12 reps for too long will eventually lead to insufficient activation of fast twitch fibres…NOT a good idea when training for mass alone. Nothing wrong with beginning with 4x12 and increasing load a la HST and adjusting sets and reps as you progress with load tho.

ZeusNathan wrote:
4 x 12 with heaviest weight possible on these lifts.

squat
pull ups
db bench press

…will yield more results. seriously.

ZeusNathan had a long argument AGAINST 5x5 for beginners for some reason, it went on for several pages.

It’s beyond me as to just why, never saw his point, but I’ve only been working in this business for over 10 years so what would I know?

I will say, in his defense that his 4x12 abreviated workout WOULD work better than that marathon workout from the OP. Just not better than a simple 5x5.[/quote]

If you were under the guidance of an experienced trainer, 5 x 5 is great. i do 3 x 6, 3 x 5, 5 x 5, with my clients all the time, but i advise against them doing that on their own. its always 4 x 12 or 3 x 12 when they are on their own. on top of that, i am not always training 18 year olds with athletic backgrounds. and 5 x 5 is anything but simple.

From a safety point of view and for a complete beginner, I agree. But the OP has a year of training under his belt and probably has spotters and training partners available.
Again, if you can double your poundages with 4x12 and gaining scale weight, you’ll gain a lot of lean mass, guaranteed. But I’d rather stick with something like 5x5 as long as the guy in question isn;t suffering frm parkinsons or something.

[quote]ZeusNathan wrote:
derek wrote:
tribunaldude wrote:
Why do you feel that 4x12 will yield better results compared to 5x5?

Any rep-set range will yield mass gains with a caloric surplus, but the use of 5x5, especially for those who haven;t established a size and strength base yet has been documented longer.

Also restricting yourself to a range of 12 reps for too long will eventually lead to insufficient activation of fast twitch fibres…NOT a good idea when training for mass alone. Nothing wrong with beginning with 4x12 and increasing load a la HST and adjusting sets and reps as you progress with load tho.

ZeusNathan wrote:
4 x 12 with heaviest weight possible on these lifts.

squat
pull ups
db bench press

…will yield more results. seriously.

ZeusNathan had a long argument AGAINST 5x5 for beginners for some reason, it went on for several pages.

It’s beyond me as to just why, never saw his point, but I’ve only been working in this business for over 10 years so what would I know?

I will say, in his defense that his 4x12 abreviated workout WOULD work better than that marathon workout from the OP. Just not better than a simple 5x5.

If you were under the guidance of an experienced trainer, 5 x 5 is great. i do 3 x 6, 3 x 5, 5 x 5, with my clients all the time, but i advise against them doing that on their own. its always 4 x 12 or 3 x 12 when they are on their own. on top of that, i am not always training 18 year olds with athletic backgrounds. and 5 x 5 is anything but simple.
[/quote]