Training Programs for Maximum Muscular Development

Intermediate Training Program #4 (Continuous Quality Improvement for the Natural Athlete)



“Improve constantly and forever” is an excellent guideline for the drugfree bodybuilder. Don’t you agree?

The originator of this principle was not a bodybuilder in any sense of the word. In fact, I doubt that W. Edwards Deming even knew what bodybuilding was. Deming was an American statistician and business consultant who is single handedly responsible for Japan’s economic ascendance from the 1950’s and 60’s where a “Made In Japan” sticker denoted a cheaply made transistor radio or toy designed to last for a few weeks, to today’s highest quality electronics and automobiles with names like Sony, Lexus, etc.

Deming’s touchpoint was “Quality Improvement”.  His system is just as relevant to today’s drugfree bodybuilder as it was to Japan’s economy. Deming said that the key to continuous improvement is to develop an effective system – one in which all components work together to support each other. He developed a very simple-but-effective model to continually improve any business system:

  • PLAN: Design or revise process components to improve results
  • DO: Implement the plan and measure its performance
  • CHECK: Check the results
  • ACT: Take action to improve the process

These four steps are known as the “Deming Cycle” – and it can be applied to building your highest quality physique just as easily as it is to building a high-quality business.

Deming taught that we should always look for small improvements in a system that will yield greater results. Being a statistician, he measured everything. You should too. Once past the beginner stage, bodybuilding improvements are not always that easy to notice.

Interestingly, as Deming’s methods evolved, so did bodybuilding. The real heyday of natural bodybuilding was the late ‘50’s-early 60’s era (B.D. before dianabol).

Then while the Japanese economy continued to improve one step at a time, the bodybuilding economy started to grow by leaps and bounds – not qualitatively, but quantitatively (as in more-is-better and the quick-fix infected our sport’s mentality.) This was an era totally in contrast to Deming’s commitment to quality and the fact of life for any business or bodybuilder –that long-range improvements over time are always better than Fast Buck-itis; or in the bodybuilder’s case, Fast Gains-Itis.


Deming said that a system should be developed to achieve a desired result or complete a task.  The system should be measurable and over time will deliver a reliable, predictable result. To change the result, you innovate or adjust the system.  This focuses a workforce, or in our case a bodybuilder through a specific list of steps to achieve a result.

As lifelong bodybuilders we should know better, but we’ve been brought up to believe one bodybuilding promise after another, from Weider to Cybergenics to the current “hot product of the month”, that we are just one product away from overnight bodybuilding success. If you look deep down inside and face the truth you’ll realize that no successful, profitable, high-quality business or body was built overnight.

There are a few businesses that seem to make a lot of bucks in the short term but in almost every case their success was built on the philosophy of revenue gain at any cost. Then a few years later they’d lost all their gains, and were filing for bankruptcy. Don’t you see the similarity with bodybuilders? Many will do anything and believe anyone to get those fast gains – even if it means no longer being in business a few years down the road. There are two other popular business books that are relevant here. One is titled Built to Last, and the other by the same author (Jim Collins), is Good to Great. Isn’t that what you really want from your bodybuilding program – a body that is built to last and with continuous progress to go from good to great?

The following case study illustrates how you can incorporate your own bodybuilding system built upon the proven success principles for business and bodybuilding.



Mike is an intelligent, 37-year old bodybuilder. He’s been pretty successful in business and is a Total Quality Management consultant. He’s been training in one form or another ever since high school. Mike’s never competed but would like to – at least just once. Over the years he’s tried just about every workout program and supplement product that’s come along. Although often tempted, he has never taken steroids. (Remember, I said Mike is intelligent.) He knows his years of lifting have paid off. He’s the best built guy at work. If there’s something heavy to lift or move, Mike is the first person his coworkers call on for help. Mike’s wife and children are proud of him. Among non-bodybuilders, Mike stands out, but in his heart of hearts, Mike wants to be a better bodybuilder.

I suggested that Mike start applying what he has learned as a business consultant to his bodybuilding. Here’s where we get back to Deming – “improve constantly and forever”.  Mike’s first step was to analyze his physique and decide exactly what areas he needed to improve. That was easy. Mike knew he wanted to improve his overall size a little, but even more important he wanted to get closer to a competition bodybuilder look. Mike knew he’d also need to bring up the size, shape and definition of his legs if he were going to compete.

We came up with a 4-day routine that included four process improvements (innovations) to Mike’s normal training.

  1. The first innovation was to add a 2nd light leg workout each week. The key is the light day focus is not on the weight lifted, but on the quality of each rep, and the reduction of rest intervals between each set. Stimulation, not annihilation.
  2. Mike planned the weights he’d use each week in advance. In the past, Mike would always start a new workout using too much weight. Or, if the weights felt light the first week, and he felt good, he’d immediately increase his weights to whatever he thought felt hard enough. And then he’d get stuck. Remember Mike’s been training for more than twenty years so it’s very easy for him to reach a plateau. I told Mike it’s better to start a new workout program with weights that feel easy and to gradually increase them each week. This brings us to the third principle …
  3. “Kaizen” is a Japanese word used in total quality business operations that means, “day to day, continuous improvement.” Actually “Kaizen” is not only applicable to improved quality in business, it is just as applicable to improving the quality of your physique. In fact, it’s probably the most rock solid and reliable training method there is. And what really makes Kaizen work over time is having a system by which it is implemented.  By knowing that if you lift a weight x number of times, then add y.  And if you add y then you do x etc, etc.
  4. Our final workout innovation was to include basic exercises, but to perform them in different sequences or in some cases to perform them in a unique manner. I will explain this as we get further into the workout.

One final thing I reminded Mike from his business consulting is “what gets measured and recorded, gets done”. Mike immediately realized that keeping an accurate workout journal would be essential to his body building continuous improvement project.

We’ll use Mike’s current strength levels for purpose of illustration. His bench press at the beginning of this project was 225 x 5 or about a 260 max. If you want to follow Mike’s plan, you should adjust the weights to your own strength levels. Here’s step one, Mike’s workout plan.

Day One: Chest / Back

Day Two: Legs (Light)

Day Three: Shoulders / Arms

Day Four: Rest

Day Five: Legs (Heavy)

Day 6: Rest

Day 7: Rest


Training Innovation: The training innovation in the Day 1 workout is alternating one set of a pressing exercise, rest, then a set of a pulling exercise. Also the progression system is laid out in advance. Mike knows when and how to progressively increase his workout poundage’s for continuous improvement.


Push Pull Series #1

Bench Press / Bent Row (or Seated Cable Row, Hammer Row, etc.)

A1. Bench Press:

Set #1 Warm-up – 135 x 10 reps

Set#2 Warm-up – 185 x 3 reps  (Day one workout continues on following page)

Set #3 Work set – 185 for max reps (target range is 10-12) if you get 12 increase poundage by 5% (10 lbs.) next workout

Sets #4 & 5: Work sets – 215 for 5 – 7 reps to failure. When you can get 7 reps on both sets, add 10 lbs your next workout.


A2. Seated Cable Row: 2 Warm-Up Sets, 3 work sets 7 – 9 reps


Performance: Do 1st set of bench presses, rest 60 – 90 seconds, then do your 1st set of rows. Continue this pattern for all 5 sets.


Push / Pull Series #2 (Same procedure as 1st group – alternate 1 set pressing with a set of pulling, e.g. Incline Press (BB or DB) your choice / Pulldown

B1. Incline Press 3 Sets 6 – 10 reps to failure when you can get 10 reps on all 3 sets increase weight by 5 lbs DB or 10 lbs BB)

B2. Pulldown: 3 sets 8 – 12 reps


Series #3 (DB Bench Press or Heavy Flyes / Chins)

C1. DB Bench Press or Flyes 1st Set: 20 – 25 reps to failure, 2nd Set: 12 – 15 reps to failure

C2. Chins: 2 sets to failure (if you can do less 6 reps per set of chins, add additional sets so that total reps performed over all sets is at least 12)


Training InnovationA light leg day is included to provide additional training stimulation while avoiding annihilation. The hoped-for result? Bring up leg size, shape and definition. Compound Sets – same muscle group is worked with no rest between exercises.

Quads: Front Squat or Smith Machine Squat <ss> Hack Squat

Superset (no rest between exercises but rest 60-75 seconds after each superset) for 6 sets with a goal of 12 reps per set. Use a constant weight on each exercise. Start light. Mike started with just 95 lbs on the Front Squats and 1 ½ plates on each side of the Hack Squat machine. When you reach 12 reps on all 6 sets of either exercise, add 20% to the weight on that exercise.

Hamstrings: Leg Curl <ss> Straight Leg Deadlift or Lunges ~ Rest 60-75 seconds after each superset. 3 supersets of 10 reps each – constant weight

Calves: 9 sets of various calf exercises


Training Innovation: Mike alternates exercises as he did on day one, but we also added an innovative twist to some old exercises. In series #2 Mike alternates 3-way dumbbell raises, 3-way dumbbell curls, and 3-way triceps presses. (See descriptions below.)

Push/Pull Series #1

A1. Shoulder Press (Seated, Standing or behind Neck): Warm-up set, then 3 sets 5 – 7 reps

A2. Heavy BB Curl Warm-up set, then 3 sets 5 – 7 reps

A3. Triceps Pushdown: Warm-up set, then 3 sets 6 – 10 reps

Performance: Alternate sets of all three exercises: 1st set Shoulder Press, rest 60 – 90 seconds; then 1st set BB Curl, rest, then 1st set Pushdown, rest; and repeat until all sets in the series are completed.


Series #2

B1. DB Lateral Raise (3 way 5-5-5) – 3 sets

Bent Lateral 1st 5 Reps, Front Raise next 5 reps, Lateral Raise last 5 reps

B2. 3 Way DB Curls (3 way 5-5-5) – 3 sets

1st 5 reps top half, 2nd 5 reps bottom half, final 5 reps full reps

B3. 3 Way Triceps Press (3 Way 5-5-5) – 3 sets

1st 5 reps skull crushers to forehead, next 5 reps bring behind head, final 5 reps pullover and press


Rest (nothing innovative here)


Training Innovation: Mike ups his target reps on squats while trying to maintain decent poundage’s. Because Mike usually squats in the 6-12 range, going for 15-25 reps will tax his will as well as his quads. Mike got 205 for 14 reps the first week, and the next week he was able to get 18 good reps. By the 5th week he was up to 26 reps on his first work set.

 (Illustrated weights are based on 225 x 10 reps normal work out poundage)

Squat – Straight Sets (lots of rest)

1st Set Warm –Up 10 easy reps - 135

2nd Set Warm – Up 5 Reps easy - 185

3rd Warm Up Set – 3 Easy Reps - 205

Work Set #1 Take your normal 12 – 15 rep poundage (for Mike it was 205) and do 15 – 25 reps. Take 2 – 4 deep breaths between reps as needed.

Rest 5 minutes

Work Set #2 Add 20 lbs (225) target reps are 10 – 20

Rest 5 minutes

Work Set #3 Same weight as 1st Work Set (205) x max reps

*** Add weight when you get to 25 reps on 1st work set or 20 reps on 2nd work set, 3rd work set is always the same weight as 1st


Every time you do this workout, try to add at least 2 reps to each work set.


Push/Pull Series to finish: Leg Press: 3 x 8 – 12 reps / Leg Curl: 3 x 8 - 12 reps



The only thing revolutionary about Mike’s plan is that Mike made a commitment to himself to consistently follow his training program, get his 275 grams of protein each day, and take his supplements with every meal. His emphasis was now on continuous, incremental, quality improvement to his physique – a physique Built To Last that was going from Good To Great.

Mike wrote the steps of the Deming Cycle in his training journal and every two weeks went through the cycle:

  1. Plan – Mike planned out his training, meals, and supplements in advance each week.
  2. Do – Mike implemented the plan. He also recorded his workouts, daily protein intake, and daily supplements.
  3. Check the results and lessons learned – Mike’s written records made this easy to do. One of the lessons Mike learned was it is much easier to get all your protein in if you plan and prepare your meals ahead of time.
  4. Act on what you learned – Every two weeks Mike would take what he learned over the previous two weeks and “innovate” an improvement to his previous plan. Doing this Mike has completed Deming Cycle for continuous improvement and is ready to start back at step 1.

A couple of months later Mike came by to pick up his supplement order. I asked how his program was working. He flashed a grin and said, “I think I’m ready to compete.” I could tell by looking at him that his plan of action was paying off. He continued, “Well, you know I’ve been keeping some pretty accurate records. I am now getting 255 on the bench for five reps, my weight is now 186 first thing in the morning. I dropped 3% bodyfat and that’s really the biggest difference in my physique. According to my records, I’ve added thirty pounds to my bench press and my body composition change to date is nine pounds net.” (Mike lost five pounds of fat while increasing his weight by four pounds. This equates to a nine-pound net positive change.) “Oh, and I increased my quads by a full inch. Steven, I can’t believe I wasted all those years when the answer was staring me right in my face every day at work. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.”

Intermediate Training Program #3 (Back to the Basics for Maximum Muscle Size)



Train 2 days on, 1 day off.

Your training journal is an integral part of this program. Your goal is to make slow and steady progress. Use the “star” method to track your progress. A 10 Star workout means you did an extra rep or used more weight on at least ten sets during your workout. Finish the whole program in record time and you get another star.

Day #1 – Legs / Calves

  1. Squat* – Pyramid 5 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 / 4-6 reps
  2. Leg Press** or Hack Squat** 4 x 10 – 16 reps (you may want to increase 2 reps per workout here)
  3. Leg Extension** 3 x 12 – 15 reps
    Superset #4 and #5
  4. Leg Curls** 3 sets x 10 – 12 reps
  5. Lunge or Straight Leg Dead Lift** 3 sets x 10 – 12 reps
  6. Superset #6 and #7 Seated Calf Raise** 5 x 10 – 12 reps and Free Standing (no weight) Calf Raises** 5 x 25 – 50 reps (OUCH!)
  7. (Same as 6)

That ends Day #1. There are lots of opportunities to earn “stars” in your training journal. Don’t be in a big rush to use as much weight as possible in each exercise. Try to leave each workout knowing you can improve in at least one exercise the next.

Day #2 Chest, Triceps, Calves

  1. 1. Bench Press (pyramid)*
  2. Incline DB Press (double progressive)** 3 sets x 6 – 8 reps constant weight. First session do 6 – 6 – 6 and gradually add reps and earn stars until you get to 8 – 8 – 8 then add weight and start back at 6. If you get bored adding reps, reduce rest time between sets to earn additional “stars.”
  3. DB Flyes** 3 x 8 – 12 reps.
  4. DB Pullovers** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
  5. Close Grip Bench Press* (pyramid) 4 x 12 / 10 / 8 / 5 – 7
  6. Super Set – Triceps Pushdown** and Dips** 3 x 6 – 12 reps each – constant weight no rest between exercises, rest only after both exercises have been performed.
  7. (Same as 6)
  8. Heavy Calf Raises** 4 x 8 – 12
  9. Light Calf Raises** or Donkeys** 4 x 15 –20 reps

DAY 3: Off

Day #4 – Shoulders / Biceps

  1. 1. Military Press* - Pyramid 4 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 – 8 reps
  2. DB or Machine Laterals** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
  3. DB or Cable Bent Laterals** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
  4. Barbell Curl* 4 x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 – 8
  5. Incline DB Curl** 3 x 8 – 10
  6. Machine Curl or Preacher Curl** 2 x 8 – 12

Day #5 – Back

  1. Chins** – 4 sets up to 12 reps per set. (If you ever get to 12 reps on all 4 sets, start reducing rest periods or add weight.)
  2. Dead Lifts - 3 sets 10 reps (add weight each set but stay at ten reps per set) Concentrate on perfect form and add weight very gradually in 5-lb. increments each week. You can do a compound Deadlift and Shrug movement instead of regular Deadlifts if you wish to stress traps a little more.
  3. Bent Rows* or T-Bar Row* – 4 sets pyramid 12 / 10 / 8 / 6-8
  4. Reverse Grip Front Pulldowns** or 1 Arm DB Row** 3 x 8 – 12
  5. Straight Arm Pullovers** 3 x 10 – 12 (lie on a bench length wise – keep arms straight) 6. 10 minutes of abs

Intermediate Training Program #2 (Muscle Size Building)



DAY 1: (Chest, Delts & Light Biceps)

A). Bench Press:

1 x 10 reps light warm up; 1 x 6-8 reps medium warm up.

Work sets:

2 x 5-6 reps to failure (when you reach 6 reps on both of these sets increase the weight your next workout).

2 x 3 reps, 90% of maximum single (when you can get 4 reps on either of these sets add weight your next workout).

Burn out set, 1 x 8-15 reps, heaviest weight possible to fall in this rep range.

B). Low Incline Dumbbell Presses:

1 x 12-15 warm up

2 x 6-9 reps (fail within those rep guidelines).

C). Seated Very High Incline Dumbbell or seated Presses:

3 x 6-10 reps (fail within those rep guidelines).

D) Alternate DB Curls:

3 x 8-12 (this is just for a pump, your heavy arms will come later in the week).

E) Abs: Work up to 100 Crunches (you can split this into 4 x 25, 2 x 50, etc., whatever works better for you.)

DAY 2: (Back & Triceps)

A) Bent-Over Barbell or DB Rows:

1 x 12 reps warm up

3 x 6-8 reps (when you reach 8 reps on all three sets add weight next workout).

B) Lat Machine Pulldowns to the Front: Try to choose a weight that will cause you to fail in the recommended rep range for each set.

1 x 18-20 reps

1 x 12-15

1 x 7-10

2 x 6-8

C) Lying Triceps Pullover/Press (great transition between lats and triceps)

1 x 12 reps warm-up

3 x 6-10 reps (when you reach 10 reps on all three sets increase the weight your next workout).

D) Dips: 2 x max reps. No added weight.

E) Triceps Pushdowns: 2 x 6-8 reps with maximum weight.


DAY 3: Rest

DAY 4: (Legs)

A) Squats:

1 x 15 reps warm up

1 x 10 reps warm up

3 x 6-8 reps, 75-80% of maximum – not to failure but with a good weight and perfect form.

Reduce weight and do 1 x 10–15 reps (Do from 10-15 reps with as heavy a weight as you can perform in perfect form, then after completing as many full reps as possible do five additional half squats at the end of the set. When you reach 15 reps in great form, add weight the next workout.

Then finally reduce weight again and do: 1 x 15-25 reps of perfect squats with five half squats at the end of the set.

B) Leg Presses:

1 x 20 reps warm up

1 x 10 reps warm up

3-4 x 6-10 reps (increase the weight for each set and go to failure).

C) Leg Extensions alternate sets with Leg Curls:

Extensions: 1 x 20 reps warm up, 3 x 6-10 reps

Leg Curls: 1 x 20 reps warm up, 3 x 6-10 reps, failure.



A) Flat Bench Dumbbell Presses (or Hammer or other Chest Press Machine)

1 x 15 reps warm up

3-4 x 6-8 reps to failure

1 x 15 reps heavy pump set

B) Front Dumbbell Raises (you can use two dumbbells or a plate – this exercise works the delt and fills in the chest area right under the collarbone).

1 x 15 reps warm-up

2-3 x 8-12 reps

C) Shrugs:

1 x 20 reps warm up

3 x 8-15 reps (increase the weight for each set to failure).

D) Straight Bar Curls:

1 x 20 reps warm up

1 x 10-14 reps to failure

3 x 6-10 reps to failure

E) 1 Arm Concentration Curl or Cable Curl 2 x 10-12


DAY 8: Rest


A) Leg Extensions pre-exhaust and superset with Squats, Hacks or Smith Machine Squats.

Extensions: 5 x 12-16 reps to failure and supersetted with

Squats, also 5 x 8-12 reps

B) Leg Curls pre-exhaust and supersetted with flat back deadlifts

Leg Curls: 3-5 sets x 10-15

Flat back deadlifts: 3-5 sets x 6-10

C) Reverse Grip (Palms facing you) Chins: 3 x max reps (no weight) or Reverse Close Grip Pulldowns: 3 x 15-20 reps to failure

D) Seated Calf Raises: 3 x 10-15 reps with 5 additional partials (burns) each set

E) Standing Calf Raises: 3 x 10 (go up on two feet, take one foot off during the negative so you are doing a single leg negative – alternate feet on each rep’s negative).

DAY 10: Rest, then start the cycle over with Day One.

The Perfect Pre Workout Supplements to Go with this Training Program

  • 2 scoops UP-Lift with 1 scoop Creatine Select 15 minutes before training
  • 2 scoops Glutamine Select plus BCAAs and sip between sets, especially on leg days.
  • Muscle Synergy 8 tablets in a.m. and 8 tablets 45 minutes before training.

Note: You may add abs and calves on another day if you choose. The main emphasis of this program is adding lean mass by training hard on the most important exercises and getting adequate recovery. Please call us at 1-800-781-3475 or e-mail with any questions.

Intermediate Training Program #1 (Complete Development of All Muscle Groups)



Split Routine – Train 2 days in a row, rest a day, then train 2 more days in a row:

One of the most effective training programs is training each bodypart twice per week and weight training a total of 4 days.  Incorporating a heavier and lighter day doing the same movements will allow your body to use different training methods and shock it into muscular growth and recovery.

Please keep personal records each workout to measure your success and also for goals on following workouts.  Once you have successfully hit the rep goal, mark it in your book and increase the weight by 5% your next workout.

Your rest periods can vary from 60 – 120 seconds, but please do not let your total workout exceed 1 hour and 15 minutes.  Your goal each 2 – 3 weeks should be to hit the top number of reps listed and increase the weight each 2 – 3 weeks by 5%.


For example:

If you can start out with the Pulldowns at 95 and your goal is 15 reps:

By week 2 – 3 you should hit the 15 reps and your following workout should be increased to 100 lbs, once you can get 100 for 15 reps you would once again increase the weight by 5%.


In this program you’ll also use one of the oldest and most basic progression schemes:

Pyramid Training: Add weight lower the reps each set.
Set 1: 12 reps with a very easy warm-up weight – not all you can do for 12 reps
Set 2: 10 reps still pretty easy
Set 3: 8 reps – use a weight you could get for 9 here but stop at 8
Set 4: 4-6 reps – a max set. Once you reach 6 reps add weight to the final 3 sets.

Set 5: 15-20 reps – reduce the weight to your starting poundage and go for max reps.

Monday: Calves, Legs (Heavy), Back (light), Biceps (Light)

Standing Calf Raises 3 x 8 – 12

Squat 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 4 – 6, 1 x 15

Leg Extensions 1 x 15, 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 20

Leg Curls 1 x 15, 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 20

Pulldowns (use varied Grip) 3 x 12 – 15

Seated Cable Rows (use varied Grip) 3 x 12 – 15

Preacher Curls (barbell or dumbbell) 3 x 12 – 15

Concentration Curls 3 x 12–15

Abdominal Crunches 3 x 25–50

Tuesday: Calves, Chest (heavy), Shoulders (light), Triceps (Heavy)

Seated Calf Raises 3 x 20 – 30

Bench Press 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 15

Incline Barbell Press 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 4, 1 x 15

Upright Rows 3 x 10–12

Rear Lateral Raise 3 x 10–12

Close Grip Bench Press 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, and 1 x 20

Triceps Pressdowns or Dip Machine 1 x 15, 1 x 12, 1 x 10

Leg Raises 3 x 20–30

Thursday: Calves, Legs (Light), Back (Heavy), Biceps (Heavy)

Standing Calf Raises 4 x 6 – 10

Deadlifts 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 4, 1 x 15

Bent Over Rows 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 4, 1 x 15

Lat Pulldowns 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8

Barbell Curls 1 x 12, 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 15

Reverse Curls 1 x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 12

Leg Presses 4 x 15 – 18

Stiff Leg Deadlifts 3 x 12 – 15

Abdominal Crunches 3 x 30 - 50

Friday: Calves, Chest (light), Shoulders (Heavy), Triceps (Light)

Seated Calf Raises 3 x 20 – 30

Standing Front Press 1x 10, 1 x 8, 1 x 6, 1 x 4, 1 x 15

Dumbbell Presses 3 x 8 – 12

Dumbbell Incline Press 3 x 10 – 12

Flat Dumbbell Flyes 3 x 10 – 12

Triceps Pushdowns 3 x 12 – 15

Lying Triceps Extension 3 x 12 – 15

Lying Leg Raises 3 x 20 - 30

Helpful Training Tips

  1. There are only three types of progression. 1) Decrease the rest between sets.  2) Increase the weight.  3) Increase the number of reps with the same weight.  Progression in any one of these three areas keeps you moving forward and producing results.  This workout focuses on weight and rep progression.
  2. It’s essential to keep a training journal to monitor your progression.
  3. Rest 2-3 minutes between sets on compound exercises.
  4. Rest 60-90 seconds on isolation exercises.
  5. For any listed rep range you should use a weight that allows you to only get the prescribed number of reps in perfect form. If you can’t get the minimum number of reps, reduce the weight.  If you can perform more than the maximum reps listed, add weight on that exercise your next workout.
  6. A realistic progression once you can get the maximum number of reps on an exercise is to add 5 – 10% more weight.
  7. Don’t rely on training gear to lift the weight, but it’s ok to use wrist and knee supports to prevent injury and promote joint health.
  8. Straps should rarely, if ever, be used with the exception of something like shrugs. If they’re used it should only be to better isolate the intended muscle group you’re targeting, but never to simply use a weight that’s beyond what you’re truly capable of.  Strengthening your own grip will make you stronger on everything.
  9. Triceps are only trained directly once per 10-day cycle, but are trained indirectly on Day 1 and Day 7 providing sufficient stimulation and adequate recovery.
  10. Make sure to perform all listed warm up sets. They help prevent injury, make you stronger on the work sets and over time they add up to more training volume.
  11. If there are any listed exercises that you cannot perform because of an injury or physical limitation, substitute a similar exercise for that muscle group that you can perform.
  12. Try your best not to miss a scheduled training day, but if it’s unavoidable don’t skip it. Simply perform the scheduled day on the next day you’re able to train.  If the full 10-day cycle takes you 11 or 12 days because of a missed day that’s ok.
  13. It does not matter what time of day you train.
  14. It’s not necessary to eat before you train, but it is necessary to consume sufficient amino acids if training on an empty stomach. Consuming Beverly’s hybrid training formula UP-LIFT, Glutamine Select, Density or Muscle Mass before and during training is more effective at that moment for muscular gain and strength than whole food. It also accelerates fat loss.  Keep in mind that food takes hours to digest while UP-LIFT and Glutamine Select do not require digestion and are absorbed immediately.


Blueprints for Success

New Articles

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No Nonsense Magazines

No Nonsense Volume 23 Number 3


A Peanut Among Peanuts

At a Glance: Eva Serber

Age: 43

Occupation or Education: Ph.D.; Licensed Clinical Health Psychologist and Associate Professor at an Academic Medical Center

Current Residence: Charleston, SC

Years training: I’ve focused on bodybuilding since 2012.

Height: 4’11”

Weight: Off Season: 109, Contest: 98-100

Favorite Bodybuilding Meal: Salmon and roasted Brussels sprouts

What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly supplements before? UMP is a great protein powder. Versatile, high mixability, and delicious flavor. I started with Glutamine Select and Quadracarn for recovery and rehabilitation after an ACL tear and reconstructive surgery (patellar tendon graft). I highly recommend these two foundation supplements for anyone trying to build strength, muscle, and promote recovery (from every day workouts or injury).

Music: Top 40 pop and rock, and I am most definitely an 80’s girl. In the gym often listening to Pandora’s station “Hard Rock Strength Training” and cardio “Dance Cardio”.

Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: I love physical activity of any kind and being outside on the beach, Greenway trail or bridge walking, baking cupcakes for others’ special days, going to the movies or theater productions with friends.

Words to live by: “Self-care is not selfish”, “in all that you do, do it in the service of your values”. “Say what you mean and do what you say.”


I have always been passionate about health and fitness, starting as a young girl with dance and gymnastics. I loved gymnastics and for a long time one of “my big regrets” was quitting “too early” when my classes stopped being fun. I played softball, had a short stint of cheerleading, joined a gym and just worked the machines with no specific goal other than enjoying it and “trying to manage my weight.” Kickboxing and Muay Thai (1st torn ACL; left knee) in graduate school was what turned the corner for me into training for athletic performance and competitive athletics. At that time, people would ask what I did for weight lifting, and I didn’t, it was just hours training in boxing and kickboxing. I started running, too, as I needed interval and endurance training for multiple rounds of kickboxing. While training kickboxing at Gainesville Dojo my sensei said that with my muscle structure I could do bodybuilding. I laughed, thinking you needed to be huge for bodybuilding, not knowing anything about the sport.

In 2005 I suffered a minor whiplash that landed me in months of physical therapy. I’ll never forget the physical therapist telling me, “Despite all that you do, you have a weak back.” She gave me a home exercise program to continue strengthening my back and that was the start of my serious weight training.

I was now on clinical internship (for a PhD in health psychology), in a weight management center and I started learning about nutrition and meal timing. I continued to lift and bodybuilders started telling me I could probably enter a bodybuilding show if I just leaned out a bit (2008). That year, with the generosity of others’ time and expertise for training and prep, I entered my first bodybuilding show, just to do it. I entered the INBF Monster Mash in bodybuilding, figure, and Ms Fit Body; placed top 5 in all categories. Afterwards, I resumed running and ran several half-marathons, lifting weights only to maintain my muscle and strength while I focused on distance running.

Fast forward to 2012. I wanted to compete again. Recently returning to Charleston, SC where I spent a year for internship, I started learning more about the different divisions of NPC competiiton. Combining my newfound love of weightlifting and strength, and my “regret” of stopping gymnastics (with dance and yoga moves in my repertoire); I sought out my coach and started training for the Fitness Division. I competed in the Women’s Physique and Fitness divisions, placing top 5 for both. Later that year I tore my other ACL while unpacking from a recent residential move. One of the medical team members recommended that I try Beverly International to aid in my recovery. I started with Glutamine Select for the purpose of healing from the trauma of injury and surgery. I then added Quadracarn for muscle maintenance and circulation benefits while in grueling rehab for 10 months.

Day one of physical therapy after my ACL reconstruction surgery (July 25, 2013), I was asked what was my goal. Without hesitation, I answered,
“Tri-fitness Challenge in Tampa, FL; May 2014 and return to the NPC Fitness Division that season as well.” Ten months of hard work in PT, Beverly International supplements, and following an anti-inflammatory diet; I achieved my goals with flying colors. I competed in Fitness in 2014 qualifying for nationals, and competed in the NPC Jr USA National Championships 2015. I retired fitness that year (at 40 years of age) to fully focus on the Women’s Physique Division (WPD). My body and work schedule needed a break from the extra hours of training required for fitness (dance, choreography, and gymnastics in addition to lifting time).

Since 2016 I have competed in WPD at the regional and national level. I’m a natural athlete and have continued to use Beverly International supplements as my constant mainstay since 2012. In terms of rankings, one could say my peaking moment was receiving 3rd place in 2017 at the NPC North American Championship; and it was indeed a very proud and excited moment. My prep was the best ever. I felt strong, happy, and maintained a reasonable work-life balance. My physique ended up better than I had ever thought it could. I had been dreaming, believing, and hoping to win a national show. I was initially disappointed with the standings, but then quickly focused on how proud I was of me. I am, and will always be the little peanut, even amongst the peanuts of 5’2” and under; and that is okay.



From July 26 to September I slowly added calories to my day while reducing cardio time to build up my metabolism again. Now it is time to recheck myself and do a “mini cut” as I slowly crept above the body fat range I wanted to maintain. This would be a good diet for any female who wishes to lean out without too much suffering.

Meal 1: 5 egg whites, 1/2 cup brown rice or quinoa, or rice cakes

Meal 2: 4oz chicken, 4oz sweet potato (or any kind of baked potato), green vegetables (these are unlimited throughout the day)

Meal 3: 4oz salmon, green veggies (my favorite is roasted Brussels sprouts and butternut squash)

Meal 4: 4oz chicken, green veggies

Meal 5: 4oz orange roughy, green veggies (my favorite at this meal is a cole slaw recipe made with Greek yogurt and apple cider vinegar)

If super hungry before bed, I have a scoop of protein (UMP) and add just enough water/milk to make a “pudding.”

On the weekend, I have a “treat” meal (e.g., burger, steak, tacos).


FitTabs, EFA Gold, & Joint Care: These three supplements are the foundation for overall health and wellness. I take them every morning.

Glutamine Select & Quadracarn: I take these twice/day to help with muscle recovery and growth. I started taking these when I tore my ACL and recovering from reconstruction surgery. Research shows that flooding the body with glutamine helps the body recovery from physical trauma.

Lean Out, 7-Keto MuscLean, & Ultra 40: Help me stay lean while building muscle during “mini cuts” throughout the year, and when cutting for competition.


I used to do a set workout for each day of the week. Now I have a game plan for body parts, but I mix up my workouts like this:

Day 1: Back (width) & Side Delts

Day 2: Chest

Day 3: Quads

Day 4: Back (depth) and Rear Delts

Day 5: Biceps and Triceps

Day 6: Hamstrings and Glutes

Day 7: Shoulders

Day 8: Back and Biceps

Day 9: Chest and Triceps

Day 10: Legs

Day 11: Shoulders

During my building season I usually do 4-5 sets of 6-10 reps on each exercise. However, if I feel that I need more definition, I increase the reps to 12-15 during my “mini-cut”.

One constant in my workout sequence is to do a standard leg workout on days 3 & 10 in the accompanying schedule, and then on the weekend I alternate my favorite workout - one mile (yes, one mile) of lunges on the beach at sunrise one week, with a stadium workout of lunges and bleacher runs the next.

Stadium Workout: Lunges for one straight away, then run up the bleacher one step at a time, recover on the way down, then run up the bleachers again taking every other step.


In Closing

I love training, I love seeing what the body and the mind can do, the transformations and changes just from changing nutrients; and above all being consistent and persistent. I take it year by year, taking stock of how I am doing mentally, physically, socially, and occupationally. There is a time and a place for everything; and no one can do it all, all of the time.

In addition to my academic credentials and clinical experience, I am also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

If you would like help in pursuing your fitness goals in health and wellness or athletic performance, please contact me a