What I am going to describe is my current "push day" workout. All movements are "pushing" the weight instead of "pulling" it. My current week looks something like:
Monday - Pull (Back/Biceps/Rear Delts)
Tuesday - Push (Chest/Delts/Triceps)
Wednesday - Legs
Thursday - Rest/Cardio
Friday - Pull
Saturday - Push
Sunday - Legs
Expect this routine to last 50-75 minutes.
Barbell Bench Press (5X5)
I always try and start out with this exercise as I feel it's the most important exercise in this day. On an average day, I handle this exercise in a 5 X 5 fashion (5 reps a set for 5 sets) each set using the same weight. I like to look at this exercise as more of a strength builder rather then a muscle builder (but thats just my opinion.)
After I have completed 5 sets of 5 reps, I will superset this with pushups until failure (when I cannot do one more rep.)
Incline Barbell or Dumbbell Bench Press (3x8-12)
It's up to you when choosing between a barbell or dumbbells on this exercise. Personally, I will alternate each workout (if I used the barbell last time, I'll use dumbbells the next.) This mix gives you the benefits of both. When doing this exercise, I will start at a weight that will allow me to achieve 1 set of 12 reps. After this, I will increase the weight so I can achieve 1 set for 10 reps, then again for 1 set for 8 reps.
Dumbbell Flies (3x12)
At this point in the exercise, I feel like I have King Kong's chest! These dumbbell flies give the whole chest a nice stretch and isolates the chest effectively. I don't find this exercise very effective unless it is the last chest exercise in my routine.
If I'm feeling absolutely exhausted, I will switch this exercise with the Pec-Dec Fly machine. On the reverse side, if I don't feel I've effectively hit my chest well enough I will do 2-3 sets of Dips to failure.
Barbell shoulder press (5x5)
I like to use the barbell on this lift because you can use 2.5 pound weights on barbells (allowing for more increments when increasing/decreasing the weight.) This is one lift I've been stuck at the same weight for awhile, so I like trying to creep up slowly with those 2.5 pound (a total of 5 pounds) in hopes of seeing some strength gains.
Front/Lateral Raises (3x12)
The most dreaded part of my routine. This is sure to get your shoulders on fire! Do these in the fashion of:
- 1 set of front raises for 12 reps
- 1 set of lateral raises for 12 reps
- Repeat for 3 sets each!
Front Raises hit your Anterior Deltoids while Lateral Raises hit your Medial Deltoids. Pick a light weight for this lift (I usually end up at an embarassing weight by the end of it) because your shoulders will be screaming after this.
Note: I work on my posterior deltoid on "pull day"
On this movement, it is your choice to use dumbbells or an ez-curl bar. If you experience elbow pain (like alot of people do) don't force yourself through it.
One-Armed Cable Tricep Pulldowns (3x12)
Unlike alot of variations of the movement, I don't use a handle on the cable. Instead, I grab the ball on the cable and will perform the exercise gripping that. Don't expect to handle much weight on this movement, it's harder then it looks!
The pump you get from this variation is sensational and is a MUST add to all tricep workouts.
Usually I'll hit the rowing machine, eliptical or stationary bike for 12-15 minutes in a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) fashion post-workout. I've found doing cardio post-workout more effective as I'm not as worn out when lifting.
Questions On These Lifts
Below is a link to my go-to guide on proper form for these lifts.