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Thoughts on Corrective Training


I've started lifting only recently, but I was too stupid to take the time to fix some pretty bad weaknesses and imbalances that are holding me back. I want to take some time and focus on my core and back, both of which are pathetically weak even compared to the rest of my body, which is also pretty damn weak. Being a beginner, I have no idea about how to approach this problem.

Ive read Alwyn Cosgrove's "Why You Aren't Getting Bigger- And How to Fix It", and I'm getting some idea of what I should be doing, but I want the opinion someone more experienced to make sure I'm on the right track.

Straight out of the article, for core strength...

Day 1
Side plank -60 sec each side
Weighted Overhead Lunge -60 sec
Asymmetrical Shoulder carry -60 sec each side
[3 circuits]

Day 2
Cable overhead isometric hold and squat -60 sec each side
Side plank with legs suspended -60 sec each side
Asymmetrical farmers walk -60 sec each side
[3 circuits]

What would you recommend adding to this for my back? I know that back is a huge area, so I'll say that my upper and lower back, as well as external rotators all need work. I could probably choose a couple of exercises to strengthen them but I don't know what rep ranges/loading/volume to go for and I'm not sure what movements to pick that will work best with the core routine above (or does it matter?).

Also, thoughts on additional exercises I should be doing to maintain what little ability I have would be really helpful. For example, I know its a bad idea to drop leg work altogether, even during a corrective phase like this, but what specifically I should be doing to complement this program is beyond me.

I did try the search but if there's an article I missed or a thread with these answers in it, just point me in the right direction.


WARMUP: Superset
1A. Face Pulls x12reps - light loading, this should not be a struggle, but maybe a little burn.
rest 60 seconds
1B. Chest-Supported Row x12 - light loading again, and put all of your focus on scapular retraction
rest 60 seconds. Repeat for a total of 3 sets.

Heavy Compound: Deadlift - 3 sets, working up to a heavy double or triple. No straps.

Heavy Compound #2: Bent Barbell Row - 3x5, working up to a weight close to your 5-rep max. Use straps and be as explosive as you can (I wear a belt to pad my stomach because I tend to hit myself pretty hard with the bar sometimes).

Lat Isolation: Pulldowns or pullups with a close neutral grip - 3x8-12, whichever feels best. Keep your elbows directly beneath your hands, don't let them flare out.

NOTE: You still need to do rear-delt work on your shoulder day to keep them balanced with the front.

There have been articles addressing it, but they're hard to find and I don't remember what they are. In your case, you don't need to back off of leg training because the imbalance isn't in your legs. Just be careful of hitting your lower back with too much volume because it's easy to stall out your deadlift gains that way. Hit your squats, then move on to isolation work for your quads and hams (lifts that don't stress the lower back much).

What you DO need to back off of is pressing movements. Do just enough to maintain your current numbers until your Bent Barbell Row 5RM is higher than your Bench Press 5RM. Then go back to your regularly scheduled program for chest.