4-Day per week workout Complete in 60 minute session

Here is a sample program you can try where you’ll work each body part twice per week, but you’ll keep your total number of workouts to just 4 per week. Each workout should take 60 minutes or less (including warm-ups). Start relatively light and add weight each week. Pay close attention to “How to Progress” below.

Day 1: Legs, AbsSets Reps
Squat (warm up, then …)35
Squat (down set)110
Leg Curl215
Leg Extension215
Sit Ups or Crunches315-25
Calf Raises312-15
Day 2: Chest, Arms, CalvesSets Reps
Bench Press (2 warm up sets x5, then …)35
Incline DB Press36-8
Standing Alternate Curls36-8
Triceps Pushdowns38-12
Seated Calf Raises (or 1 Legged Calf Raise)310-12
Day 3: Back, Shoulders, AbsSets Reps
Deadlift (warm up, then …)25
Front Pulldowns38-12
Bent Row36-8
Military Press36-8
Leg Raise315-25
Day 4: Whole BodySets Reps
Bench Press (warm up, then…)33
Bench Press (down set)115
Squat (warm up, then …)215
Reverse Grip Lat Pulldowns (or chins)26-8
DB Shoulder Press26-8
BB Curl26-8
Lying Triceps Extension28-12

Proper progression is essential to the success of any workout plan. Here are some guidelines to make sure you get the best possible results from this 4-day per week workout.

1. Exercises calling for 5 reps or 3 reps – add weight the next time whenever you can get your target number of reps on all sets. Example: Day 1 Squat calls for warm–ups and then 3 sets of 5 reps; if you use 275lbs and achieve 5 reps on each set, then use 280lbs the following week.

2. Exercises calling for 6-8 reps per set – if you get at least 8 reps on your first set and 6 or more on your last set, add weight the next time.

3. Exercises calling for 8-12 reps – when you can get 12 reps on the first set, increase poundage slightly the next time you do that exercise. (Same for exercises calling for 12-15 reps.)

4. Exercises calling for 15 reps – try to get 15 reps on each set. You might have to lower the weight slightly for the 2nd set. Use the 1st set as your gauge, if you get 15 reps then add weight the next time you to that rep scheme.

5. On abs, just work up until you can do 3 sets of 25 reps of each exercise.
Almost everyone tries to increase poundage too fast, or by too large an increment. Use 5 pounds increases for the Squat, Bench Press, and Deadlift. For the other exercises, use the smallest increase possible. It would pay off in the long run to purchase some 1.25 pound plates or PlateMates and take them to the gym in your bag.



In the accompanying article you’ll see that » Brian’s nutrition plan centers on protein. He has 6-7 meals daily. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner usually contain 40-60 grams of protein along with 25-50 grams of complex carbs. He has a mid-morning and mid-afternoon UMP shake, and before bed either a 12 egg white omelet, or his Wiefit Protein Pudding recipe (at wiefit.com, select recipes at top). He takes 4-6 each of Mass aminos and Ultra 40 liver with each meal (and shake). If you want to gain muscle and strength, yet lose fat at the same time, you should do the same. Brian weighs over 210lbs; and averages 1.25-1.5 grams of protein, and .5-1.0 grams of carbs per pound of bodyweight. Adjust your protein and carb intake accordingly if your weight varies much from Brian’s. If your primary goal is to lose fat, adjust your carb intake to the lower end of the given range; to gain adjust carbs intake closer to 1 gram per pound of bodyweight.

This is an effective program for anyone desiring to build strength and muscle. It also fits nicely into the guidelines that were presented for the Over 50’s in the last issue of No Nonsense (18 #3). Next issue, we will once again dedicate a complete column to the Over 50’s.

Posted in Blueprints & Guides, Most Popular, Workouts to Gain Muscle.