This is my workout cycle for the next 15-weeks. I wanted to mix things up. I based the program on Brad Schoenfeld’s Max Muscle Plan (with some tweaks by yours truly). It is an excellent book; well researched with practical guidelines and suggestions. I will probably repeat it, with minor changes, two more times before the end of the year.
1) Two-thirds of the sets you perform for each muscle group be basic compound lifts, like the squat, bench press, stiff-legged deadlift, chin-ups, presses, rows, etc.
2) Allow yourself to rest at least 3-minutes between working sets. You can perform sets for unrelated muscle groups during your rest intervals to perform more volume in less time (antagonistic muscles, abs, calves, etc.)
3) Follow the general guidelines as much as possible, if you want to break a training rut. Remember, everything works until it doesn’t. If you always do, what you have always done, you will get what you have always gotten. The best program is the one you aren’t doing.
Terms and Explanations of the Program
Splits (Training Splits): How the body is divided for training, for example:
- Back&Chest-Legs-Delt&Arms: Back and Chest are trained in one session. Leg muscles in another session, and Delt (deltoid/shoulders) & Arms in another session.
- Upper-Lower: Upper body muscles are trained in one session, Lower Body muscles in the next.
- Push-Pull-Leg: Pushing muscles of the upper body (chest, shoulders, & triceps) are trained in one session, Pulling muscles of the upper body (back, traps, & biceps) in the next session, and Leg muscles in the next (quadriceps, hamstrings, & calves).
Suggested Weights – Weights are based on my calculated 1-repetition max (1RM) for each exercise, which I determine for each major exercise at the beginning of the cycle. The second spreadsheet tab allows you to calculate your 1RM and it estimates what weights constitute your 8RM, 10RM, 12RM, 15RM, and 20RM for each exercise.
I keep the 1 RM estimates and these program guidelines saved on my SmartPhone as a PDF in my Apple – Books app. I did this by converting the excel file to a PDF, emailed it to my iPhone, then saved it in my Books app.
RIR – repetitions in reserve (how many reps in the tank/short of failure).
Volume – the number of working sets for large muscle groups (quad, hamstring, chest & back); I recommend performing half as many sets for smaller muscle groups (shoulders, biceps, triceps, & calves).
Weekly Volume: the number of working sets per week performed for major muscle groups. During weeks 5 thru 7, the total weekly volume will vary depending on how many sessions were completed for a particular muscle group. For example, during Week 5, upper body muscle groups were trained twice. The volume for the first session was six sets, and the second was nine sets for a weekly total of 15 sets.
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