T Nation

Routine Advice / Critique

Hi there!

I have been following programs for 2yrs and would like to play around a little with my routines; hence posting here and not picking one from the articles. I have been reading the forums and everyone seems to really know there stuff i so thought i’d post up what i’ve put together for some expert critiquing!

The program is based on what I have found works well for me. Frequency, espec with back and legs, and simple compound lifts with moderate volume.
The idea of this would be to gain as much mass as possible.

1,
Squats 4x10
Front Squat 4x10

DB Incline press 4x10
DB Bench press 4x10
10Mins HIIT Cardio
2,
Rack Pulls 4x10

Dips 4x10
Chin ups 4x10

Preacher Curl 4x10
10Mins HIIT Cardio
3,
Deadlift 4x10
Leg Press 4x10

Standing Press 4x10
DB Seated Press 4x10
10Mins HIIT Cardio
4,
Dips 4x10
Pull ups 4x10

Lat Pulldowns 4x10
Close Grip Bench 4x10
10Mins HIIT Cardio

I am thinking of switching the rep ranges after 5 weeks down to 6 to keep stimulating growth and strength increases.

Your knowledgable help would be really appreciated! I am only a gym enthusiast and this is my first time building something a little more specific for myself.
Many thanks all!

so you strictly do sets of 10…on everything? You dont do any horizontal rowing? You do one curl movement but zero other 'isolation’moves? and you look like that in ur avi? What the fuck is going on here

Hi there and welcome. You said your goal now is to gain as much mass as possible, which I would assume you would obviously like to gain as much mass in as short a time as possible too. You have been lifting for 2 years so its safe to say you have a good grasp on how to properly perform many exersises to stimulate growth.

I think you should consider lowering the frequency and volume of your workouts. Also lowering the rep range to 6-8 reps, 10-12 on legs. Optimal muscle growth occurs outside the gym when given the appropriate stimulus, (workouts) tempered by rest and a sound nutritonal intake and caloric surplus.

The workouts should be brutal, try increasing the intensity of your workouts by incorporating some high intensity methods, (there are many useful and interesting articles on this) and hit each bodypart once every 6-7 days, to allow for recovery.

Maybe cut back on the cardio to 2x or 3x times a week. A simple low intensity stationary bike or powerwalk would suffice to aid recovery.

Increase your overall calories, keep the protein to 1 to 1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight to feed and repair muscle, complimenting this by consuming healthy fats and complex carbs. If you haven’t done so already, consider keeping a training and nutrition journal to monitor your workouts and food intake sso you can properly narrow down what works best and what doesn’t.

If possible, get at least 7-8 hours sleep at night.

This type of approach is not deemed all that popular but it has personally worked best for me in terms of gaining muscle mass over a short period of time.

I hope this helps.

(BTW, arms are looking good in the avi)

[quote]bignate wrote:
so you strictly do sets of 10…on everything? You dont do any horizontal rowing? You do one curl movement but zero other 'isolation’moves? and you look like that in ur avi? What the fuck is going on here[/quote]

No. I have typically trained in the 5-8 zone, very rarely going above 8. This is why I added sets of 10 because I wanted to hit a different range for a little? Hope this makes sense?

I agree I didn’t see I hadnt have rows. I would change that for Lat pulldown.

Thanks for your help sir :slight_smile:

[quote]Hitkiller wrote:
Hi there and welcome. You said your goal now is to gain as much mass as possible, which I would assume you would obviously like to gain as much mass in as short a time as possible too. You have been lifting for 2 years so its safe to say you have a good grasp on how to properly perform many exersises to stimulate growth.

I think you should consider lowering the frequency and volume of your workouts. Also lowering the rep range to 6-8 reps, 10-12 on legs. Optimal muscle growth occurs outside the gym when given the appropriate stimulus, (workouts) tempered by rest and a sound nutritonal intake and caloric surplus.

The workouts should be brutal, try increasing the intensity of your workouts by incorporating some high intensity methods, (there are many useful and interesting articles on this) and hit each bodypart once every 6-7 days, to allow for recovery.

Maybe cut back on the cardio to 2x or 3x times a week. A simple low intensity stationary bike or powerwalk would suffice to aid recovery.

Increase your overall calories, keep the protein to 1 to 1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight to feed and repair muscle, complimenting this by consuming healthy fats and complex carbs. If you haven’t done so already, consider keeping a training and nutrition journal to monitor your workouts and food intake sso you can properly narrow down what works best and what doesn’t.

If possible, get at least 7-8 hours sleep at night.

This type of approach is not deemed all that popular but it has personally worked best for me in terms of gaining muscle mass over a short period of time.

I hope this helps.

(BTW, arms are looking good in the avi)

[/quote]

Firstly many thanks for your reply! Really helpful stuff :slight_smile:

I understand what your saying regarding frequency. However, I have always found 2x works well for me on back and legs. If you think i really should swap up i’ll certainly take you advice as you definitely know your stuff!

I’ll incorporate the 6-8 and 10-12 ranges. Would you recommend less sets also to cut the volume?

Many thanks for your help, and nutrition advice! :slight_smile:

And thanks for your comment :smiley:

No problem, sure I’m still learning myself.
Yeah once you push that one working set on given exercises to total failure, and perhaps beyond, there is no need for any more sets. Even the breakdown of a workout itself can be reduced. For example, lets say you trained back, the first exercise could be close grip pulldowns, 3 warm up sets and then 1 all out working set, next exercise could be bent over barbell rows, you could get away with doing 2 warm up sets and then 1 all out working set, and then maybe seated pulley rows after that, 1 warmup set then 1 working set, this is just an example, but my point being that your back would already well warmed up from previous exercises that you dont need to waste time doing as many warm up sets for my last exercise.

Hope this helps, feel free to pm me if you have any more questions.

[quote]ZzSpartan wrote:

[quote]bignate wrote:
so you strictly do sets of 10…on everything? You dont do any horizontal rowing? You do one curl movement but zero other 'isolation’moves? and you look like that in ur avi? What the fuck is going on here[/quote]

No. I have typically trained in the 5-8 zone, very rarely going above 8. This is why I added sets of 10 because I wanted to hit a different range for a little? Hope this makes sense?

I agree I didn’t see I hadnt have rows. I would change that for Lat pulldown.

Thanks for your help sir :)[/quote]

i would just look at your program, look at what youre doing for say chest, and at least match it with back if not more. look at what you do for biceps, match that at least with triceps. I only say this because u have more chest/bi work it seems but back/tris are both bigger than those respective groups and no one has ever been hurt by an overdeveloped back. Also i still think you look pretty fucking big in ur avi and feel like you should have advice for me.

[quote]Hitkiller wrote:
No problem, sure I’m still learning myself.
Yeah once you push that one working set on given exercises to total failure, and perhaps beyond, there is no need for any more sets. Even the breakdown of a workout itself can be reduced. For example, lets say you trained back, the first exercise could be close grip pulldowns, 3 warm up sets and then 1 all out working set, next exercise could be bent over barbell rows, you could get away with doing 2 warm up sets and then 1 all out working set, and then maybe seated pulley rows after that, 1 warmup set then 1 working set, this is just an example, but my point being that your back would already well warmed up from previous exercises that you dont need to waste time doing as many warm up sets for my last exercise.

Hope this helps, feel free to pm me if you have any more questions. [/quote]

That makes sense. The program I have been following up to now was HCT-12. It is effectively 1 set of failure with 3 sets of clusters. I actually made alot of progress with this method. The reason i would like to change however was because I figured adding a little volume for 2-3 months wouldn’t hurt. I would then switch back of course. Do you think this is a good idea?

Many thanks for your offer of help and sharing your knowledge! Really appreciated! :slight_smile:

[quote]bignate wrote:

[quote]ZzSpartan wrote:

[quote]bignate wrote:
so you strictly do sets of 10…on everything? You dont do any horizontal rowing? You do one curl movement but zero other 'isolation’moves? and you look like that in ur avi? What the fuck is going on here[/quote]

No. I have typically trained in the 5-8 zone, very rarely going above 8. This is why I added sets of 10 because I wanted to hit a different range for a little? Hope this makes sense?

I agree I didn’t see I hadnt have rows. I would change that for Lat pulldown.

Thanks for your help sir :)[/quote]

i would just look at your program, look at what youre doing for say chest, and at least match it with back if not more. look at what you do for biceps, match that at least with triceps. I only say this because u have more chest/bi work it seems but back/tris are both bigger than those respective groups and no one has ever been hurt by an overdeveloped back. Also i still think you look pretty fucking big in ur avi and feel like you should have advice for me.

[/quote]

Thats a really good suggestion… I wanted to actually work my back and legs more because 1. they have responded well to high frequency in the past, and 2. My chest grows really quick, I actually cut my chest movements to once every two weeks over the last year because it would harm proportions. I’ve only noticed the dips will add more workload than I actually intended for chest!

I really enjoy working back so adding some extra movements here would be welcomed! Where would you suggest programming wise? I would also like to develop a bit more quad mass. I am squatting pretty heavy ATM (350 x6) but the mass seems to be developing in my hamstrings and glutes; hence including the front squats after the big lift.

Many thanks for your help and compliment :slight_smile:
Both you and HIT look big! but I have no problem sharing what I have done; however, I am not an expert and im sure there are many others here that can offer awesome and professional advice! Feel free to ask though!

[quote]ZzSpartan wrote:

[quote]bignate wrote:

[quote]ZzSpartan wrote:

[quote]bignate wrote:
so you strictly do sets of 10…on everything? You dont do any horizontal rowing? You do one curl movement but zero other 'isolation’moves? and you look like that in ur avi? What the fuck is going on here[/quote]

No. I have typically trained in the 5-8 zone, very rarely going above 8. This is why I added sets of 10 because I wanted to hit a different range for a little? Hope this makes sense?

I agree I didn’t see I hadnt have rows. I would change that for Lat pulldown.

Thanks for your help sir :)[/quote]

i would just look at your program, look at what youre doing for say chest, and at least match it with back if not more. look at what you do for biceps, match that at least with triceps. I only say this because u have more chest/bi work it seems but back/tris are both bigger than those respective groups and no one has ever been hurt by an overdeveloped back. Also i still think you look pretty fucking big in ur avi and feel like you should have advice for me.

[/quote]

Thats a really good suggestion… I wanted to actually work my back and legs more because 1. they have responded well to high frequency in the past, and 2. My chest grows really quick, I actually cut my chest movements to once every two weeks over the last year because it would harm proportions. I’ve only noticed the dips will add more workload than I actually intended for chest!

I really enjoy working back so adding some extra movements here would be welcomed! Where would you suggest programming wise? I would also like to develop a bit more quad mass. I am squatting pretty heavy ATM (350 x6) but the mass seems to be developing in my hamstrings and glutes; hence including the front squats after the big lift.

Many thanks for your help and compliment :slight_smile:
Both you and HIT look big! but I have no problem sharing what I have done; however, I am not an expert and im sure there are many others here that can offer awesome and professional advice! Feel free to ask though![/quote]

well theres a few options, ive done things like just add some band pullaparts or light like4x25 on cable rows just throughout the week on top of normal work. Especially on chest day ill do some back work just to pull my shoulders back, it just feels nice. This could work well if you like the high frequency, just make sure you only pick a couple of times to really go all out on the back exercises if you plan on doing them this many times a week. The other options would be to just add an addition horizontal row movement on the days you train back. Cable rows, db rows, barbell rows etc… the same kinda thing applies for legs, you can add some like leg extensions quite a few times a week if you dont go to failure, or you could simply add legpress or extentions or hack squats, something just for quads, hope that helps. Also maybe try doing neutral grip presses on one of your movements, would emphasize the chest less and tri’s more so you wouldnt need to add more tri work if you dig that,