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Cover image for Tweaking My Lifting Routine

Tweaking My Lifting Routine

kpwags profile image Keith Originally published at kpwags.com 惻3 min read

Looking back at the last two months, I've noticed I've done a pretty good job of hitting the weights 5-6 days a week. Because of this, I decided I'd tweak my routine a little bit to help jump start some gains.

Since I built my home gym, I've been running a 4 day version of a 5/3/1 plan mixed with the PHUL plan. This has generally worked out well for me. I was able to regain a decent chunk of the strength I lost. Now that I'm lifting around 6 days a week, I figured I'd add 2 more days worth of lifting to my cycle to hopefully help make more gains easier.

I thought I'd share the routine I've built myself in hopes that maybe it'll help inspire you or give you ideas on how to improve or build yours...or get some feedback to improve mine.

Some Terminology and Background

I base the weights of the 4 big lifts (Overhead Press, Bench Press, Squat & Deadlift) off of what they call the "Training Max" or TM. This is basically 90% of your 1 rep max (1RM), which refers to the heaviest weight that you can do a single rep of the exercise. So when I say "5 @ 75%", that means I am doing 5 reps at 75% of my Training Max. So if my TM is 100 lbs., I'd be doing 5 reps at 75 lbs.

You'll also notice for Mondays through Thursdays, I start with the big lift 5 @ 75%, 3 @ 85%, & 1+ @ 95%. That final '1+' set is the key set. That's what determines when I increase my TM. If I can do at least 5 reps at 95% of my TM, then I bump up my TM by 5 lbs. Some people only use 3 as the cutoff, but I prefer 5...it's a personal choice.

The other notations should be self explanatory. "3 x 8-12" means 3 sets of 8-12 reps.

The Routine

Mondays - Overhead Press

  1. Overhead Press: 5 @ 75%, 3 @ 85%, 1+ @ 95%
  2. Bench Press: 5 x 10 @ 60%
  3. Barbell Row: 3 x 8-12
  4. Front Dumbbell Raise: 4 x 10-12
  5. Barbell Shrug: 3 x 8-12
  6. EZ Bar Curl: 4 x 8-12
  7. Skullcrusher: 4 x 8-12
  8. Twenty-Ones: 1 x Narrow Grip, 1 x Wide Grip, 1 x Reverse Grip

Tuesdays - Deadlift

  1. Deadlift: 5 @ 75%, 3 @ 85%, 1+ @ 95%
  2. Squat: 5 x 10 @ 60%
  3. Romanian Deadlift: 3 x 8-12
  4. Standing Calf Raise: 4 x 10-12
  5. Russian Twist: 4 x 15-20
  6. Ab Wheel: 4 x 10+

Wednesdays - Bench Press

  1. Bench Press: 5 @ 75%, 3 @ 85%, 1+ @ 95%
  2. Overhead Press: 5 x 10 @ 60%
  3. Dumbbell Row: 4 x 10-12
  4. Dumbbell Bench Press: 4 x 10-12
  5. Hammer Curl: 4 x 8-12
  6. Dumbbell Fly: 3 x 8-12
  7. Overhead Tricep EZ Bar Extension: 4 x 8-12
  8. Twenty-Ones: 1 x Narrow Grip, 1 x Wide Grip, 1 x Reverse Grip

Thursdays - Squat

  1. Squat: 5 @ 75%, 3 @ 85%, 1+ @ 95%
  2. Deadlift: 5 x 10 @ 60%
  3. Front Squat: 3 x 8-12
  4. Seated Calf Raise: 4 x 10-12
  5. Dumbbell Side Bends: 4 x 15-20
  6. Ab Wheel: 4 x 10+

Fridays - Upper Body

  1. Bench Press: 4 x 6 @ 75%
  2. Overhead Dumbbell Press: 4 x 8-12
  3. Close-Grip Bench Press: 3 x 8-12
  4. Upright Row: 3 x 8-12
  5. Zottman Curl: 4 x 8-12
  6. Dumbbell Tricep Extension: 4 x 8-12
  7. Timed Farmer Carries: 3x
  8. Twenty-Ones: 1 x Narrow Grip, 1 x Wide Grip, 1 x Reverse Grip

Saturdays - Lower Body

  1. Squat: 4 x 6 @ 75%
  2. Sumo Deadlift: 4 x 6 @ 75%
  3. Bulgarian Split Squat: 3 x 8-12
  4. Hip Thrust: 3 x 8-12
  5. Seated Calf Raise: 4 x 10-12
  6. Russian Twist: 4 x 15-20
  7. Ab Wheel: 4 x 10+

Discussion (9)

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern šŸŒ±

This is a lot of volume!

How sustainable is this?

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Ben Halpern šŸŒ± • Edited

(I'm not questioning it, that's just my first reaction šŸ˜…... I have a hard time with this many lifts this many days)

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Lee

It looks like something that definitely needs building up to for sure!

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Keith Author

Yeah, I built up to 6 days a week. When I first started I was only doing 3 days...worked up over time

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Keith Author • Edited

I've been lifting 6 days a week for about 2 months now, just decided to tweak it to add 2 more assistance days rather than just repeating 4 days over and over.

I think the whole pandemic and needing something to do is contributing to this.

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Lee

I love the idea and concept of TM Keith. If I am reading this properly, are you measuring your success from your TM gain and weight/muscle mass increase? This also looks like a tremendous lifting routine @ben

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Keith Author

I guess for me I consider success being able to hit all my sets and reps. With the main 4, Iā€™m just trying to increase the reps for that final set so I can move up in weight.

I just like having a set progression that makes it easier to understand when to move up in weight with scaring the living crap out of me that Iā€™m going to heavy and will hurt myself.

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Lee

Brilliant. And to supplement the training, I think I remember you saying you were getting better at protein intake on weekdays, is that natural protein or do you supplement with shakes etc?

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Keith Author

I prefer food sources, but will use shakes as needed.