T Nation

Tips for New Routine


Well I'm new to T-Nation so first, hello everybody :slightly_smiling: I'm a 19 y/o gym lover. I have been training on and off (more off than on) for 2 years, but in the last 4 months I've been very serious about my training and I could stick to the gym to follow my routine everyday, even if I was ill.

The problem is, I can't really feel any mass gains in any of the routines I've tried so far.
I started 2 years ago with the basic split of Chest/Bis, Back/Tris, Shoulder/Legs with basic exercises and machines (no squats or deadlifts tho). When I rejoined the gym here, I made two different workouts of my own, with some info taken from TN and other forums:

October-November: Full Body workout, one exercise per muscle group. 3 sets of 10,8 and 6 reps. I did one different exercise each day, trained on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

But about a month and a half, I started to feel I needed more intensity, I found myself doing two instead of one biceps exercise and that kind of stuff. So I created a little more complex routine:

November-December-January: It was based on three basic workouts: Chest/Triceps, Back/Biceps, Shoulders/Legs. And then some I called "reinforcement" workouts, doing targeting antagonic muscles: Biceps/Triceps, Chest/Back, Legs/Shoulders (not really antagonic, I know). I trained on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, then, depending of what muscles I trained on Monday and Tuesday, I did a different reinforcement routine on Friday. I did 4 exercises per big muscle group and 3 for the smaller ones, in the reinforcement, I did 4 for each.

Some interesting and unexpected results came up. With the full body workout, I managed to become a lot stronger (getting to almost double my noob bench press weigh from 110 lbs to 200). But I noticed little mass gains.

With the second workout, my bench press went up a little more (to hardly lifting 200 lbs to be able to comfortably perform 210) and so did the rest of weighs, however, I experienced the biggest strength gains on the reinforcement day, the funny thing is that day was supposed to add intensity but the muscles should have been tired enough to do a crappy performance. No matter if I trained until exhaustion, 2 days after I was fully charged again.

So I was a little disappointed by the fact that the Full Body worked better than the intense training, and that one worked in an unexpected way.

So for the new routine I was thinking about doing an antagonic muscle group 5 days a week, grouping Bis/Tris, Chest/Back and Legs/Shoulders like:

Monday: Bis/Tris.
Tuesday: Chest/Back.
Wednesday: Legs/Shoulders.
Thursday: Bis/Tris.
Friday: Chest/Back.

On monday I'd train Bis/Tris lightly, to be able to perform fine Chest/Back on Tuesday, and the other way around for Thursday and Friday. 100% intensity goes for Legs/Shoulders training day.

So, any tips for this new routine? I had to write a long post with my other workouts in order to be able to receive critique and wisdom about what was right or wrong. I want to try something different.

P.S.: I know most of the results come with a correct diet, but I live in a dorm room and they cook food for 300 people. So you can tell it's a low quality, cheap food full of fats. I can't get a proper diet here, so I want to get the most of my routine. I sleep about 6/7 hours a day (if I sleep more I'm tired all day long) and drink little water unless I'm training, I'm just not thirsty at all.


If you are not gaining weight, you are not eating enough - plain and simple. Try supplementing with a good quality whey protein.


you are dedicating a whole workout to Biceps & Triceps, in fact, twice a week. and once a week you do half a workout worth of legs.

and you are asking why you dont gain? I know this is the beginner forum but come on.

I would advice you to read the stickies at the top, they contain good links and lots of valuable information.


Fist, thank you for the feed back.

The fact that I don't train legs/shoulders more often is simple, they are quite in a good shape for what I want them (mostly running). I used to compete in swimming for 6 years. Plus, I also do some cardio every now and then, about 1-2 hours a week, however it's not in the routine since it depends of the free time I have. I don't really know why people hate leg day since it's one of my favourite day, I love squatting and extensions.

About the shoulders, I have an injury I was born with (don't know how it's called) that makes them "dislocate" in their range of motion. I was told by the doctors to stop going to the gym. I decided to just ignore that, however, I have to take good care of them. At the ending of chest day, some days I just feel my shoulders are out of control and I have to stop. I train them hard on Wenesday, but since they are used in almost each other of the exercise of other muscle groups, I feel they are "trained" everyday.

The routine is very arm focused because watching my body, you can realize I need it. I got big pecs (seems to grow faster than other muscle group, may have something to do with being a bench press freak) and an "adequate" back, but I feel I lack a lot of mass in my arms.

The feedback is very appreciated, but I made that "mistake" on purpose. What would you change anyway? Taking into account I want to focus a little on the arms. Should I add a sixth day or would that be too much?

Edit: I bought some whey protein, what's the right amount? 1.5 kgs per kg you weigh?


Stop posting if you're not going to take advice while making up excuses. We've heard this exact same excuse a couple thousand times before as to why you are the exception to the rule and don't need to train your legs. You are not going to be taken seriously around here if you insist you have just cause for training your legs for half of a session/week while dedicating 4 times as much time to your arms alone. Period.


Did you expect to look like the incredible hulk in four months?

Eat, lift more and be patient.