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Upper/ Lower Beginner Routine Critique


Hey guys so i know there are probably a lot of threads like this but I was given this routine by a co-worker who just became a personal trainer. He is pretty big (probably 5'9 215, ripped) and i just wanted to get your thoughts on this routine before i commit to it for the next 3-6 months.

Monday Upper (heavy) A&B are supersets
1a BB Bench 3x6-8
1b BB Rows 3x6-8 Accesssory/isolation= DB curls3x8, DB shrugs3x8, Dips 2x8
2a BB OHP 3x8
2b Pullups 3x8

Tuesday Lower (heavy)
Squat 3x6
Deadlift 3x5 Accessory= Lunges 3x12
Calves 3x10

Wednesday Off

Thursday Upper (lighter)
1a DB Incline 3x10
1b DB Rows 3x10 Accessory= DB Hammer Curls 3x12, DB shrugs, Dips 2x12-15
2a DB Military Press 3x10
2b Pullups 3xFail

Friday Lower (lighter)
Squat 3x10
Deadlift 3x5 Accessory= Lug curls 3x12, Chinups 3xfail, Box squats 3x20
Lunges 3x20
Calves 3x15


Doesn't look bad actually. The only thing I don't like about it is that there is no built in progression, meaning it is not built into the program when to add weight, you're going by feel. Which isn't always bad, but I definitely prefer having the progress built in.


That is a good point, we didn't get that far when we talked about it. The reps are all pretty high even though he outlined lighter and heavier days, looking that that routine how would you design the progression around this workout? Adding 5lbs a week until i can't? Or maybe alternating reps with lbs? Say increase reps one week and then add 5lbs and go back to the original rep scheme?


Those are all ways to do it, but personally I prefer using percentages, specifically 5/3/1.


I second this, You can still use a similar plan if you use 5,3,1.


militarypress: 5,3,1.

squat: 5,3,1.

bench: 5,3,1.

deads: 5,3,1.

Just an idea.


no cardio or any kind of conditioning? Great article below, good program outlined too.



What are your stats now and what are your goals? How have you trained in the past? (if at all)

If you're a TRUE beginner, I would recommend NOT doing 5/3/1 at first. Just my opinion, however.


I consider regular conditioning work to be a part of any program. I didn't bring it up bc the OP didn't.