Are you frustrated with your current workout? Have you been at the same weight and same strength for months—or even years?
This article will show you what real natural bodybuilders do to gain mass in as little time as possible—all without lifting weights more than 3 days per week.
Do a short warm-up set before each exercise with approximately 50% of the weight you will use for the main working set. Do about 4-6 reps with this lighter weight, just enough to get warmed up.
- 2,500+ expert-created single workouts
- 3,500+ how-to exercise videos
- Detailed workout instruction
- Step-by-step workout tips
- Training at gym or at home
- Access to Workout Plans
- Access to Bodyfit App
- Store Discounts
Already have a Bodybuilding.com account with BodyFit? Sign In
What comes with BodyFit?
- Instructional Videos
Don't risk doing a workout improperly! Avoid injury and keep your form in check with in-depth instructional videos.
- How-to Images
View our enormous library of workout photos and see exactly how each exercise should be done before you give it a shot.
- Step-by-Step Instructions
Quickly read through our step-by-step directions to ensure you're doing each workout correctly the first time, every time.
Additional Workout Tips
Length Of Your Workout
The workout should last no longer than 45 minutes! Plan your rest between sets accordingly so that you finish in this time period. Studies have shown that after 47 minutes of intense weight training, your cortisol levels shoot up.
This means that the longer you workout after 47 minutes, the less results you will get and the more likely you will overtrain. So get in the gym, lift hard, stay focused and get out.
Train To Failure
The most important thing is that you lift to absolute failure! It is almost 100% necessary to have a workout partner. If you need to get 8-10 reps, choose a weight that allows you to get 8-10 reps, but no more.
Once you reach your last rep, you should not be physically able to do another one, no matter what. Only you can judge if you are truly putting all possible effort into each set.
Practice Proper Form
Perform each set with good form. Cheating will only hurt your gains. Do each rep slowly and do not use momentum.
Each rep should use a full range of motion and take approximately 2 seconds on the way down and 2 seconds on the way up. Do not "jerk" the weight up. Slowly move it up and down. Use lighter weight if you must. This is important to your gains so don't ignore this!
Stay In Constant Motion
Do not stop moving during any part of your set. You should stay in constant motion without locking out on any exercise. Do not stop at the bottom of your exercise.
A full-body workout that you will complete 2 1/2 or 3 days per week on one of the following schedules:
3-Days A Week: 1 on, 1 off, 1 on, 1 off, 1 on, 2 off. Usually people will do this by working out Monday, Wednesday, and Friday with the other days completely off from weight training.
2 1/2-Days A Week: Experienced lifters may benefit even more from taking more rest days. Have you ever noticed that after a 2-day rest period, your next workout is awesome? You feel good, your strength is up and you have a great workout.
Then, near the end of the week you feel tired and drained? Lifting on the following schedule allows you to get full recovery and have a record-breaking workout each time: 1 on, 2 off, repeat.
Progression: You Need A Log
You must lift heavier each workout. If you lift 100 pounds for 10 reps each workout for months, your body will have no reason to get bigger and stronger. You will not grow unless your weights are going up repeatedly. The only way to fully track this is to write down everything you do in a workout log.
If last time you did 225 pounds for 10 reps on the bench press, you must go to at least 230 pounds for 8 reps on your next workout. If you do get 8 reps, then on your next workout you should get at least 9 reps with the same weight.
Once you can get 10 reps, you must raise the weight again. Look at your log from your last workout, and beat it on every exercise. Even if you only get half a rep more than before, you will be gaining.
It is important that you also track your body weight and measurements so you can see how much progress you have made. I recommend weighing yourself before each workout and measuring a few of your important body parts (like arms, thighs and waist) before you go to the gym.
Why Does This Work?
Stop thinking that more is better! Many bodybuilders who are used to high volume training would laugh at a bodybuilder who does one set per exercise and only works out three days per week. I ask them how many times a week they work their biceps.
Almost always, they say once per week. So they work their biceps, then they let them rest for 7 days in a row? After 1 or 2 days, their biceps are no longer sore, yet they wait another 5 or 6 days to work them again. Their biceps are slowly shrinking during this long rest period.
In our workout you isolate each body part three times per week with a full, heavy set. You hit it on Monday, let it rest one day, hit it on Wednesday, let it rest, hit it on Friday, and then give the poor muscle a 2-day break before starting the cycle again.
Why is this good for muscle building? Think about when you build a callous on your hand. If you were to rub your hand until it was cut and started bleeding, then wait a week, then do it again, you would simply have a scar.
On the other hand, if you were to rub it a little each day or every other day, it would slowly build up a resistance to the rubbing, thus forming a protective callous. This is the same idea with our workout.
Our workout looks easy on paper, since you are only doing one set per exercise. Trust me, if you go to failure on each exercise, you will be more physically exhausted than ever before.
Nutrition And Supplements
As you may have heard, nutrition accounts for at least 70 percent of your success. Try to build a brick house without bricks! It ain't happening. Your body cannot build without building blocks like protein.
Your body must also have a positive calorie balance so your body is in weight-gaining mode. The important thing is to be sure that you are getting enough calories and protein.
If you aren't gaining, up your calories until you are. You should not be gaining fat, so cut your calories down if your body fat percentage starts to rise.
For supplements, be sure you pick a good protein powder or a weight gainer. Use creatine, a multivitamin, and an antioxidant.
It is recommended that you keep your cardio down while doing this workout program. This is a bulking workout to use when you want to gain muscle mass.
The more calories and energy you put toward cardio or other types of exercise, the less ability your body will have to grow muscle.
If you must do cardio, keep it to no more than 20 minutes at a time, three days per week. Save the cardio for your cutting cycle!
OK, your brain now has the knowledge it needs to turn your body into a muscular freak. You just have to get the motivation to actually do the program, follow it perfectly, take your supplements and eat right.
Do you have what it takes? Are you going to have the body that other people are jealous of? Will you get stares from girls and guys every time you walk into a room? That is 100% up to you now. Try the program, follow it perfectly for at least 6 weeks and you will be on your way.