T Nation

Thoughts on My Routine?


I've been devising a workout program which delivers consistent, trackable progress. The idea is that you hit AMRAP for each exercise at each load point throughout a cycle.
It's a rough skeleton of a program right now, but tell me what some of your thoughts are?

--Program structure--
1 - Squat day
2 - Bench day (+ pulldowns)
3 - Rest
4 - Deadlift day
5 - Rest
6 - Overhead day (+ rows)
7 - Rest

Loads used for every exercise are calculated as a percentage of your 1RM

Week 1: 75%
Week 2: 80%
Week 3: 85%
Week 4: 90%
Week 5: Rest

At the conclusion of the cycle, use your week4 performance to calculate your new 1RM for each exercise for the next cycle.
Perform as many reps as possible for each exercise. Leave nothing left in the tank. Rest 3-5 mins between exercises. Warm up sufficiently but reasonably before the first exercise of each day.

--Squat day--

Back squats,
Box squats, (-5%)
Front squats (-10%)

--Bench day--

Flat bench,
Dumbbell press, (-5%)
Dips, (-10%)
Pronated pulldowns *
Supinated pulldowns * (-5%)
Close grip pulldowns * (-10%)

*You can also perform pull-ups/chin-ups/neutral grip-ups

--Deadlift day--

Conventional deadlift,
Sumo deadlift, (-5%)
Stiff legged deadlift, (-10%)
Glute ham raise, (-15%)

--Overhead day--

Barbell overhead press,
Seated overhead dumbbell press, (-5%)
Barbell row,
Cable row, (-5%)
One arm row (-10%)


That looks like a great way to mess yourself up quite badly in a short time.

I guess if your max lifts are very low you might almost be able to get away with it, but with low max lifts you’re likely to have at best poor technique and going AMRAP with poor technique is really, REALLY stupid. All you’ll end up doing is ingraining bad habits. Going for AMRAP with heavy loads is even dumber.

Just by the general gist/tone of the post, I’m guessing you’re not that experienced at all. What are your numbers? What do you want out of this? This is the powerlifting forum, and IMO this does not at all look like a powerlifting program because of the focus on AMRAP. Generally speaking, novices shouldn’t write their own programs. It doesn’t end well most of the time.

Now, admittedly, having a day each for squat, bench, DL and press isn’t a bad idea. Even the exercise selection isn’t that terrible, although you probably don’t need all that many of them.

The main issue I see is the idea of going AMRAP on all the exercises for all the sets. Seriously, you will hurt yourself doing this. Not if. When. If you’re that desperate to do some AMRAP sets, why not try something like this for each session:

main movement
week 1 - 5x5 @ 80%, 1xAMRAP @ 50%
week 2 - 5x4 @ 85%. 1xAMRAP @ 55%
week 3 - 5x3 @ 90%, 1xAMRAP @ 60%
week 4 - 5x2 @ 95%. 1xAMRAP @ 65%

GHD - 3 sets of 10-25
Barbell rows/pull-ups - 3 sets of 5-10
Dumbbell press variation - 3 sets of 5-10

With the AMRAP sets, stop the moment you feel your technique deteriorates - at this stage you’re better off stopping early rather than ingraining bad habits.

Better still, pick a good program and follow that.


If you want to have a day focused around the main 4 lifts and have AMRAP set, try 5/3/1. It doesn’t seem THAT different than what you’re suggesting, but it’s been very widely proven successful. Rotate some of the other excercises in as assistance options. Do one of the templates as written for a while then adjust or switch as necessary.