4 week phases
First 4 weeks, train 2 days on, 1 day off, next 4 weeks, train 4 days on, 1 day off.
Next 4 weeks 4 days on 1 day off Phase 2
- Day 1: Legs
- Day 2: Chest / Triceps
- Day 3: off
- Day 4: Shoulders / Biceps / Legs (feeder workout)
- Day 5: Back
- Day 6: off
- Start over
#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
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!)
Day #2 Chest, Triceps, Calves
1. Bench Press (pyramid) 5 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 / 4-6 reps
2. Incline DB Press 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 & 7 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. 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. Military Press – Pyramid 4 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 – 8 reps
2. DB or Machine Laterals 3 x 8 – 12reps
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
Do Less Cardio program
- Your cardio program will depend on the results of your initial body composition assessment.
- The amount of cardio you need to do depends on the amount of FAT you need to lose. And the amount of TIME you have to lose it. Remember, the first thing to understand is that from a bodybuilding perspective, you’ll be using cardio to burn BODY FAT, plain and simple – the more fat you have to lose, the more cardio you’ll have to do.
- Do exact amount of cardio based on your composition. When your doing cardio, your body burns fat and also burns hard earned muscle.
- It’s very important that you quantify your cardio program. Don’t just get on a treadmill and walk. Set a GOAL! It can be DURATION, INTENSITY (mph, percent incline, or level), or best of all CALORIES expended. Once you set a baseline for calories expended it’s easy to make your cardio progressive (just like your weight training will be). There is more than one way to make your cardio progressive. Of course, the most common method is to just increase the amount. That’s not always the smartest way, though. You can also increase intensity by incorporating HIIT cardio and actually reduce the actual time you spend on cardio. We will be discussing HIIT cardio in detail during the next workshop phase.
- For now, we’ll recommend you start a duration based program as a baseline to establish your current cardio caloric expenditure. If your body composition assessment is ahead of schedule there’s a good chance that you will be able to stick with your 1st week baseline cardio workout for at least the first four weeks or possibly longer. If you are behind schedule you may have to jump ahead a few weeks to try to get on track. It’s really a matter of whether your condition is ahead, on, or behind schedule.
- We recommend that men start their cardio at 3 times per week for 20 minutes per session, female bodybuilders at 4 times per week for 30 minutes. You can use any combination of cardio equipment during phase 1 – treadmill, elliptical, stationary bike, step mill, etc.
Here are a couple of guidelines to help you determine your proper cardio program:
- If you are already lean, just stay at three times per week for 20 minute
- If you are starting to get too lean either decrease the number of days or the number of minute
- If you feel you are behind schedule, jump ahead on your schedule. But do not go beyond 60 minutes per day
- Feel free to cross train and perform a variety of cardio exercise
- Determine calories expended simply by using the read out on the particular machine(s) that you are using. Record the calorie read out in your training journal for each cardio workout and calculate your total calories expended each week
More about pre-contest cardio Contest Workshop
What are the bodybuilding competition guidelines
Are there any rules or restrictions to mens bodybuilding
Are there any special rules or restrictions for female bodybuilders
Is there a bodybuilding competitor checklist that will help me make sure that I have everything covered
What do I need to know about figure competition
Is there a figure competitor checklist
Bikini division competition guidelines
Crossovers in divisions are allowed in some contest or train as a crossover
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