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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:42 pm 
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Hello,

I'm Cassius and I'm 23 years old. I've been training for a few years in the row time ago, then had a couple years off and now have been pulling myself together since some months.

I'm looking to increase my strength and overall muscle size, so I'm also supplementing with whey protein shakes and creatine monohydrate through the day.

Here is the 2 days split routine I'm following, sized and adapted to my needs/resources (I'm training with just an olympic barbell, plates and a rack at home). Each exercise I do a warmup set with lighter weight, then do the following sets with greater weight.


workout A:
Squat 3 set x 10 reps

Barbell Military Press 3x5
Barbell Upright Rows 3x8

Weighted Chest Dips 3x4-7 (using 20kg or 30kg)

[2 days rest between a workout and the next one]

workout B:
Barbell Deadlift 3x6
Barbell Bent-Over Rows 2x9
Pull Ups 3x6 or Weighted Pull Ups 2x4-6 (using a 20kg plate)
Barbell Biceps Curls 3x6-8


That's it. Any comment is welcome.

One of my questions is that chesp/triceps dips are too little for developing pectoralis muscles. I was thinking to add Dumbbell Fly as primary exercise, but I've got just 26kg dumbbells and I may try a bent-arm variation until I can fill the gap.

Another concern would be the rotator cuff, since I may be overusing the anterior deltoid in the workout A, but I don't know how I'd pull out an adequate workout without including above exercises.


Thank you in advance


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:21 pm 
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Interesting routine.

My first reaction is why 3x10 on your lead lift on A, and only 3x5-8 on what looks like you are intending as accessory lifts? I'd want to go a little heavier and lower volume on the squats, and then 8-12 reps or something for the others. Even with hypertrophy as a main goal, I'd think this would serve you better.

Similarly, I'd probably do lower volume for the DL. You often hear people caution that too much volume on DL will lead inevitably to overtraining. I don't agree with that extreme opinion, but would caution you to at least think about it, and maybe experiment with lower volume. Especially if you find that you are increasingly fatigued, and not feeling "ready" for then next workout, consider cutting back there. If you have worked up to that volume gradually, you may be able to handle it fine. Also if you don't push real heavy with it.

Dumbbell Fly as a primary exercise? That doesn't compute. I don't see how it would function as a primary exercise. As an accessory tacked on at the end of one or your routines, sure. Do as much volume as you can with the DBs you have. Actually, 26 kg sounds pretty heavy for that to me.

For your last question, I notice that you have 2 push and 1 pull in your A, and only pulling in B. So you could easily move either the press or the dips to B, and then maybe move something from B to A just to even out the total length of the workouts. Or you could make one day all push and the other all pull. Or try it both ways and see what you think.

By the way, I wouldn't call this a split routine. More of a divided full-body.

The ultimate test, of course, is to do it for a while and see how it goes.

Welcome to the forum!

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 5:47 am 
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i would change the order a bit, add bb bench press and squat on both days

A:
Squat
Bench
Deadlift (only 1 set)
Dips (2 sets)

B:
Squat
Military Press
BB Row
Pull Ups (2 sets)
(ocassionally BB Upright Row, if you think that MP is not working your shoulders enough)
(ocassionally Biceps Curls, if you think that BB Rows and Pull Ups are not working your Biceps enough)

this routine is an adjusment of rippetoe's basic starting strength program and fits you good imo.

your rep ranges are a bit interesting, but i think you have a reason why you are taking this rep schemes. i'm using 5-7 reps for all lifts.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:48 am 
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Thank you both for your tips and ideas. They're really appreciated. :wink:

Any reasoned correction is welcome, since I may be ignoring most scientific studies and proven training ideas.

I may have omitted a bit of details, so I understand your wonder on many things. Some of these inconsistencies may just be my own fault, though.

I tried to split the muscular groups like this:

workout A -> legs + shoulders + chest(/triceps, which have already been used/warmed up by the shoulded exercises)
workout B -> back + lats + biceps (which have already been used/warmed up by the lats/back exercises)


In reply to Jungledoc:

I'm not doing squats with lower repetitions (and so using adequately heavier weights) because my rack does just keep the barbell in place but doesn't have safety bars. The first set is just a warmup and I push harder in the following two, so yes I'm not pushing all sets in the same way since the 2nd and 3rd use heavier weight than the 1st one. If I could sort out this rack problem I'd be hitting the squats deeper, harder and of course safer, I know.

About deadlift, I see progress being made by using this routine (hit 7 reps with 142.5kg last workout, at 76kg bodyweight) so I thought that while I try to stick to good form, I'd have been safer by not forcing just 3 repetitions with heavier weights and working in the 6-8 reps range.

I chose to separate upper body push/pull in an effort to not overtrain either biceps or triceps.

Since triceps assist the military press pushing overhead, I included them in the same workout via the chest dips, and likewise I chose since the biceps assist the lats muscles while doing bent-over rows and particularly chin-ups, I decided to include biceps curls in the same workout to finish them off and feel them being worked out.

I asked about dumbbell flys because sometimes I feel that the dips are working more the triceps than the pectoralis major. Or of course not like the barbell/dumbbell bench press I used to do at the gym years ago. But unfortunately I haven't got a bench.



In reply to ephs:

I've got no bench, so unfortunately I can't do the bench press.

A concern of mine about overtraining: won't using the triceps in both workouts (dips and military press) or quadriceps/legs on both workouts (squat) led to overtraining or not enough rest, since they work double the time than biceps do?
I think I've never trained two heavy compound exercises like squat and deadlift on the same day, though if this is better for some reason I've always ignored, I'll have to switch at it :thumbright:



To add some context about my otherwise virtual bodyframe, so that you aren't holding back suggestions due to lack of data:

I think I'd fit in the mesomorph somatotype (though I'm no pure mesomorph and before weight training leaned to the ectomorph or underweight mesomorph), I'm 5'6" (about 1.68m) tall and my past personal bests have been (at 78kg bodyweight):
bench press 9 reps using 90kg
deadlift 6 reps using 160kg
chin up 1 rep using 40kg
weighted dips 2 reps using 60kg

never really squatted the proper bottom way (again for safety reasons, even the gym didn't have safety bars), so I'd have preferred to omit recalling the half-squat using 170kg for reps :lol:

as of now I am way behind above stats, I weight 76kg but I don't know how much I'd bench press, I did 4 weighted dips using 40kg, did 4 weighted chin ups with 20kg, deadlifted 142.5kg for 7 reps, and am squatting in the 10 reps range using 100kg, but again I'm not being perfectionist about this last one since I'm trying to be safe even if no safety bars are available.


Thanks for reading and helping me out :wink:


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:50 am 
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your order of exercises is also okay. you are right that you train many muscles on every day with my suggestions. but you tend to use a small amount of exercises, which is good imo, so it's like jungledoc said not a real split routine, but more a divided full body workout. so your volume is not so high per workout day and that's why you can train legs and triceps on every day.

your PRs are very good, so i think you know what you are doing. if you like to split in your way to give your muscles more rest, then that can't be so wrong, cause you made a lot of progress with your former programs.

the thing with the bench is really a problem. you could buy one, they are not so expensive or build one with two beer crates and a wooden plate. sounds like you have some kind of squat rack, if you perform squats.

i like to go hard on many big lifts per day, i even do all the big lifts every training day, cause i work my full body only two times per week and i'm still not overtrained after about 3-4 months with this program.

you could give squatting 3 times per week a try, many people say it's the best.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:07 am 
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ephs wrote:
the thing with the bench is really a problem.

Why? Why would one need bench press?

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:17 am 
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Dub wrote:
ephs wrote:
the thing with the bench is really a problem.

Why? Why would one need bench press?

cause i don't know a way to stimulate the chest as good as at bench pressing. maybe you know something.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:05 am 
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Dub wrote:
ephs wrote:
the thing with the bench is really a problem.

Why? Why would one need bench press?


for swole pecs, obviously.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:51 am 
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stone wrote:
Another concern would be the rotator cuff, since I may be overusing the anterior deltoid in the workout A,


You might want to read this thread (and in particular this reply) if you have questions about your shoulders.

As for developing your chest (as opposed to developing upper body pushing power) you might find that dumbbell bench presses will work better than barbell bench presses and dips. Exercises that lock the hands in one position prevent the chest from executing its main function - moving the arms across the chest. Dumbbell military and bench presses might be easier on your shoulders, as well

EDIT: I see that you don't have access to a bench. Oh, well :red:

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Last edited by Stephen Johnson on Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:01 pm 
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Hell, if you can't get huge triceps and chest/shoulders with Push-ups, dips and overhead presses you ain't even trying.

Isolating the pecs is unnecessary for anyone but professional bodybuilders. Bench isn't even such a good exercise for pectoral muscles anyway. It's good, and don't get me wrong, I love the bench press, but it's not on my top list of actually building pecs.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:45 pm 
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Dub wrote:
Hell, if you can't get huge triceps and chest/shoulders with Push-ups, dips and overhead presses you ain't even trying.

Isolating the pecs is unnecessary for anyone but professional bodybuilders. Bench isn't even such a good exercise for pectoral muscles anyway. It's good, and don't get me wrong, I love the bench press, but it's not on my top list of actually building pecs.

bench press is not an isolation exercise. you can build a good body which whatever exercise you like and keep on doing for a good amount of time, but i think the bench press is the number 1 exercise to build strength in the chest muscles. maybe there are other exercises that are better for building muscle or a better look. dips could be good if you do a huge number of reps.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:26 pm 
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Well to press or not to press that is the question? Since you don't have a bench you could go old school and do the floor press! Granted the range of motion is limited, but it beats a blank.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:45 pm 
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i found a good comment from TimD about floor presses and alternatives of bench pressing in this thread: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3860:

"Well, they can't hurt. Not optimal though, because of the ROM issues alreakdy discussed. They are usually used by powerlifters to help work their lockoutstrength of the upper arms. IMHO, a bridge press would be much better.Put the DB's down on either side of you, go into a wrestlers bridge, then do your db bench presses. This also gives you good overall neck strength. This used to be a staple back in the dark ages when I was wrestling in HS and college. Another better substitute would be P bar dips or push ups between benches or chairs. These allow the full ROM as well, and both can be weighted through innovation.
Tim
"

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Last edited by ephs on Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:45 pm 
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Thank you all for your replies.

I didn't state my previous and actual PR to brag or to shut up discussion/advice from people lifting less than me. :salute:

Also while my previous or actual increase of strength may be proof that the programs I do/did work for me, I can't be so sure because for example I may just be benefiting of a tendency of mine (though I've seen people really gifted at lifting weights and I don't fall into that category).

I'd like to maximize the chances to lift more and hypertrophy more, so any idea is welcome. :cheers:


I am unsure about dips effectiveness on my pectoralis because, while it's a non-scientific method (don't think I measured up my girth), I think they're smaller than they were when I included like 3 sets of bench press, 3 sets of decline dumbbell press and dips in my workout at the gym.

Of course I was lifting more weight, as showed by the difference in my previous PR in the dips and my actual one, but I just wanted to be sure that I don't end up in summer with underdeveloped (compared to other muscles) pecs.

I also realize that for a true fullbody, I should work calf, neck and abdominals too. I am guilty of overlooking specific work on them, though I hope to fill this gap soon with some weighted crunches on the floor, calf raises immediately post-squat and maybe getting a head harness.

About rotator cuffs, while I luckily don't feel discomfort, should I try ditching the military press (as suggested in the t-nation article linked in the thread post suggested by Stephen Johnson) and doing front or lateral raises with plates (some of my 10kg and 20kg plates have got handles) instead? Or should I do both for a better deltoid development? Or maybe try the specific exercises suggested here on Exrx for teres major/minor etc?

When I was training in the gym it has always been easier for me to feel the delayed soreness by lactic acid in the 2-3 days post chest workout, while I always strived to get the same worked-out feeling in the shoulders.
So I finished them off with dumbbell lateral raises (in the 10 reps range) with the last ones cheating a bit with the back, so that I'd try and force negatives.

On my actual workout, I won't say that my deltoids are still sleeping after doing the military press and upright rows, but still I don't get the burning feeling I used to get. It's like if upright rows are inferior at stimulating them than dumbbel lateral raises were. Also I don't seem to get a similar constant increase in weight/reps in the military press while I'm experiencing it in my deadlift.

About floorpress, I don't know how I'd use workout-sized weights and still stay safe. Though if I have to bench press in order to fill the gap, I'll have to come up with something reasonable for my budget and most importantly space, because I'm using an assemblable rack like Ironmind's one, which I assemble and disassemble in each workout.


Thanks for reading


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 8:38 am 
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leanmuscle13 wrote:
Well to press or not to press that is the question? Since you don't have a bench you could go old school and do the floor press! Granted the range of motion is limited, but it beats a blank.
No, that's not the question. The question is whether to BENCH press or not. There is a lot of pressing that isn't bench pressing.

You don't have to bench. It has become a staple part of gym culture, but you can do a lot of different exercises that will develop your horizontal pushing strength, or develop your chest. You do dips and military. Throw in some pushups once in a while if you want. Floor presses are sort of a specialty assistance lift. No reason to include them in your general routine. I love to bench, but it isn't necessary.

Are you lifting as a body builder? I mean are you trying to work on the definition of each muscle? If not, even if you are trying in a general way for hypertrophy, you don't need to think about individual muscles. Think in terms of movement. I think about vertical push, vertical pull, horizontal push, horizontal pull, hip-dominant lower and knee-dominant lower. I just find this a lot simpler and more practical than worrying about each muscle.

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