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Program Insight, Advice Greatly Appreciated

So, here’s my general plan, I don’t relate days of the week to a specific day, but it basically translates into 2 days on, 1 day off (typically light work and stretching) and I alternate the main (1st) lift every other workout.

Day 1: (back and bi)
-Conventional Deadlift 5x5
OR Pendlay Rows 5x5
-Pull Ups 5x5 w/weight, or 3x10 without
-Bodyweight rows on DL days, Snatch Pulls on Pendlay days
-2 higher rep biceps workouts, barbell curls, preachers, dumbbell curls, etc.

Day 2: (chest and tri)
-Flat Bench 5x5 OR Decline Bench 21’s
-Single arm dumbell press 3x10 (varying angles periodically)
-Dumbbell Flys 3x10

  • 2 Various higher rep Tricep lifts, skull crushers, pulldowns, extensions, etc.

Day 3: (light)
Stretching any noticeably tights spots, shoulder work, about 3 ab excersises, or until I’m gassed, whichever comes first, grip work, Calves, etc.

A lot of this day is just to keep me in the frame of mind, and staying focused

Day 4: (legs and shoulders)
-Squats 5x5 OR Zercher Squats 5x5
-Lunges until I die OR Rear foot elevated split squats 3x8
-Hamstring Curls 3x10
-Sholders are in rehab, but something to the effect of lighter shoulder press, landmine press, Rear Flys, and so on.

Hopefully that is easily readable when it’s posted.
I’ve asked a million questions, but I’ve never actually had my routine looked at and picked apart, so I’m welcome to all criticism.

My main goal is really a combination of size and strength, strength being a little higher of a desire.

I’ve kind of settled on this “program” (I say that loosely, having never actually had someone look at it) because it seems focused, but it also varies enough to keep me interested. I like focusing on barbell work, and I’m also limited in the dumbbell department.

I’ve been looking into periodization, but I’m not too sure where to begin.

And here’s some personal info: 6’3", 210lbs, 25ish BMI (Just for perspective, I’ve got a little pudge), current barbell 5 rep maxes and details:

Bench: 275, haven’t moved in just over a month, and it’s ugly

Squat: 285, been here for a while

Deadlift: 335, got 345 x3 and felt like I was going to have a stroke, but deadlift is slowly still climbing

Work Monday-Friday, but have time to lift 7 days a week, so I’m open to any variations, thanks for any advice my dudes!

Hypertrophy and strength potentiate each other. Greater cross sectional area of muscle = greater potential force output. Increasing your numbers allows you to increase workload over time i.e. progressively overload, providing an environment conducive to hypertrophy.

Usually it’s better to take a “if it ain’t broke don’t fuck around with it” approach. If something is working for you e.g. making gains in muscle and/or strength consistently then tinkering with it is a waste. When something stops working or stalls is when it’s time to have a think about why and what should be changed to continue progress.

As for periodization probably best to just get on an existing well established program. You can learn by studying the program/s as you do them, research on your own and then when you’re ready write up your own programs.

Kinda meh in a lot of categories. A basic Push/Pull/Legs split or something may be better for your goals.

Variation/Specificity: Probably too much exercise variation. Kinda a “jack of all trades master of none kinda deal” that is holding back your progress on Squat/Bench/Deadlift. Covering all your bases/angles is admirable but there’s a time and place. However alternating every week or two is too often to build decent skill/strength and allow time for adaptions to occur. Probably better off sticking to something for at least a month.

e.g. personally I’ll incline DB press for a meso cycle or two (2 months) and then switch it up to Weighted Dips for the next two months to train that decline angle and emphasize the triceps/delts. Take the time and get really strong at your chosen assistance/accessory movements and let those gains carryover to your main lift. Then when it get’s stale/stalls switch and repeat.

Frequency on the main lifts is not helping at all e.g. Squat. You do it infrequently for two workouts then, if I’m following how you do the workouts correctly, stop squatting completely for an extended period of time while doing Zerchers i.e. an exercise with a different movement pattern. You’re having to relearn the movement every time you come back.

Just Back Squat. Git gud at the movement pattern, build some skill in it with frequent practice and this will translate into not having a poor squat. If you need to do Zerchers as assistance/accessory throw them in after Back Squat.

Overload: Sticking to the same rep schemes and thus volume/workload per training “week” means you rely on upping the weight to overload and stimulate growth/strength. Inefficient progress to say to least. Arduous and slow more like. Consistent gains are hard to come by this way or dudes would be linearly progressing and benching 1000lbs all over the place within a few years.

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Basically, don’t fuck with it while it’s working, but focus on simplifying the session and dialing in major lifts wherever possible. And research periodization in the meantime and find a program to ultimately jump on board with when the progress stalls (if I’m interested in it after the research obviously)

My main plan of attack was going to ultimately be weeding out small muscle groups eg. triceps and biceps, and start hitting the barbell lifts more frequently, I just enjoy curls and skull crushers, what can I say. I have noticed massive improvement, and less pain in squats (was dealing with pretty serious mobility issues for a while) since I’ve basically removed the BS work out of it. To be honest I kind of tapered off the Zercher Squats because they were incredibly boring to me.

Thanks for the advice dude, I’ll put it in action


just tell me how close my basic understanding off periodization is:

Basically start with a high rep, low max percentage routine on my main lifts, and progressively work my way down to a lower rep, higher max percentage leading ultimately to a max, or close to max week, and then cycle?

Obviously there are a lot of details like how quickly you transition down the rep scheme, and accessory lifts, but I can get into that later.


I’ll start you off with these:

  • Google “Stronger by Science Periodization: History and Theory”


Well, I spent far longer perusing through that site than I thought I would. Thanks!

Who dafuq r u. You’re welcome tho lel

Tbh I mostly read the key points / takeaways because Greg Nuckols and his pals are verbose af

Please tell me your arnt doing 7 partial bottom, 7 partial top and 7 full reps on the main movement of the day…?

Also @khangles if you post Ronaldo again, imma have to jump through the internet and snap your ankles and lel at you while you take a poofy Ronaldo dive.

Did I use lel correctly? It’s tough to keep up with you kids sometimes…

@Irishman92 pls

Go back to masticating old timer…your mouth is writing checks your body can’t cash.

I just can’t compete with gifs, my old timer fingers get all messed up with the buttons :sadpanda:

But seriously, did I use lel correctly?


Just a guy

Look at dis GIF I made

For clarification, the 21s are an alternative when my shoulder acts up, it only hurts under a lot of weight, reps don’t seem to bug it.

And thanks a fuck load Khangles, I’ll dive in tomorrow and come out less ignorant, hopefully.