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how's my routine? Your thoughts please

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Old 10-03-2007, 08:27 AM
mitya mitya is offline
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Default how's my routine? Your thoughts please

Hi there

After getting into building recently and getting some good initial advice from helpful people on this site I was advised to put together a routine and post it for scrutiny. I'd greatly appreciate getting some feedback on it. The aim of the routine, in line with my eating habits, is to gain weight (I have a fairly built, defined frame already), not necessarily get glistening muscles.

Tuesday- shoulders, lower arms
Anterior deltoid - barbell behind neck press
Lateral deltoid - barbell upright row
Posterior deltoid - barbell rear delt row
Brachioradialis - reverse curl
Wrist, extensors - barbell wrist curl
Wrist, flexors - barbell reverse curl
Thursday - back, chest, waist, hips
General - barbell bent-over row
Trapezius upper fibers & levator scapulae - cambered barbell seated shrug
Infraspinatus & teres minor - dumbbell lying external rotation
General - bench press
Obliques - dumbbell side bend
Erector spinae - barbell bent knee good-morning
Gluteus maximus - barbell straight-back stiff-leg deadlift
Saturday - upper arms, forearms
upper arms
Triceps brachii - close grip bench press
Biceps brachii - curl
Brachialis - dumbbell concentration curl
Brachioradialis - reverse curl
Wrist, extensors - barbell wrist curl
Wrist, flexors - barbell reverse curl
Monday - thighs, calves, chest
Quadriceps - barbell lunch
Hamstrings - barbell good-morning
General or gastrocnemius - barbell standing leg calf raise
Soleus - safety barbell seated calf raise
Tibialis anterior - reverse calf raise
General - bench press
  • I put the routine together using www.exrx.net's directory. I'm hoping, therefore, the terminology above and the names of the exercises are uniform and you'll know what I mean.
  • Each day features 6 exercises, except for Thurs (7)
  • I tend to do 4-5 sets for each exercise. From what I've read and heard this seems to be OK. Reps vary between 4-15 depending on the muscle.
  • There are no 'squat' exercises for the lower body as I have a condition with my kneecaps which stops me bending on my knees a lot.
  • Chest and forearms feature twice as I want to concentrate on them. Or is anything more than once a week inadvisable?
  • The lower body isn't something I'm hell bent on building but a lot of people have said that neglecting one half of the body will hinder growth on the other.
  • As is rather obvious from the choice of exercises I have only a barbell, no other equipment, though I'm getting a dumbell bar this week.

Where areas of the body have several muscles (i.e. the shoulders have alterior deltoids, lateral deltoids, etc) should I be working all of these, or is it more a pick and choose thing? I'm also pretty new to building - perhaps certain muscles are for pros while the rest of us should concentrate on the most 'traditional' (not sure what I mean by that) muscles?

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Old 10-03-2007, 08:51 AM
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Cradler Cradler is offline
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Um... wow.

You really, really, really don't need that many exercises. Really. You're doing an exercise for each individual slice of your anatomy here, which is damn scientific but not necessary. If you hit the major compound lifts - a lot of which are actually on here, I'm seeing - you'll end up hitting all of these muscles anyway. Like, for instance, those three shoulder exercises each have some overlap, and as a result you'll very easily end up overtraining. Seriously, this workload is ridiculous and you could be a lot more injury-prone this way. Similarly, a lot of these are just plain unnecessary; I'm not a big proponent of direct biceps/triceps work myself.

I understand the thing about squats - how about deadlifts? Squat, deadlift, and bench press (flat) are called the 'big three' - they add mass more than any other movements, and most importantly, they each work huge parts of your body all at once. You can hit a heavy set of deadlifts and work around 70 percent of your muscles at once. So really think about cutting this workload down... like a lot.

I wish I could reply more but I have to go back to school - let me just throw these two things out there -

One of your notes said you weren't sure what frequency was advisable. Once a week is probably not your best bet - two/three times a week is about the norm. I try to leave 48 hours between lifts - between 48 and 72 is probably enough.

Also, you acknowledged that building only one half of the body is inadvisable - agreed. You won't reach your growth potential by just doing upper body stuff.

Just a few thoughts, although seeing as I can see 0311 is looking at this thread, they may be unnecessary.
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Old 10-03-2007, 09:18 AM
EricT EricT is offline
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What you have listed is not a routine. It is just a list of exercises and days.

Not only is doing an exercise for each individual slice of your anatomy unecessary, it is ill advized. For one thing it is not really possilbe to truly isolate all those individual parts. All you'll really do is overwork smaller muscles at the expense of larger one and ultimately form injury causing and strength robbing imbalances.

For another thing the body simply doesn't work that way. It is not a collection of individual parts but a whole and integrated machine...from you head to your toes in fact...and it should be worked that way.

The workload, in fact is not really that great. Because with a few exceptions you've specifically picked exercises where the weight that can be used is much less than the weight to be used in more natural compound movements. You may do a lot of volume in terms of reps and sets but the workload will be wimpy.

DITCH THE SHOULDER DAY....first rule for healthy shoulders.

If you have a barbell you can do deadlifts as Cradler said, and deadlift deriviatives. These will work you from the ankles up to the traps. Including the quads, the core musculature, etc. and so on.

If you seriouly can't do squats then lunges are excellent but they are not a "ham isolation". Stride length determines the degree to which hams or quads are emphasized. Step-ups are perfect for developing the hips and legs as well. Variations on the split squat too such as bulgarian splits.

Between overhead lifts (press), bench press, and rows the entire shoulder is worked and then worked some more on other things. Not to mention the traps, romboids, lats, pecs, etc.

Pullups are fantastic.

With all these compound movements every muscle will be worked to some degree. The extent to which you want to do some of the other stuff will be to introduce balance where it seems wanting or where it is found to exist. The other things may be used as assistors to help develop the primary exercises.

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If you act sanctimonious I will just list out your logical fallacies until you get pissed off and spew blasphemous remarks.
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Old 10-04-2007, 05:50 PM
thonaker thonaker is offline
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Location: Virginia
Posts: 61

Nice posts guys,

What about partial squats? I would say any squat is better than none. Some people have done well with partials. Just use a squat rack and set it to stop at some safe point so you don't go too low.

It would be beneficial to your growth to get some of those big lifts in, if you can. Obviously, don't do something that is going to hurt you.

I'm just curious if this condition with your knee caps could be improved with exercise?


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