Basic Pyramid Workout

sample pyramid workout


The following workout is a sample pyramid workout routine.

A pryamid style workout is a progression in intensity with each passing set, while at the same time, reducing either the number of repetitions performed or (and) the amount of rest between sets. For building muscle and strength, it usually means increasing the amount of weight used with each passing set while at the same time, reducing the amount of repetitions performed (see image above).

Although there are many variations for pyramid type workouts, weight progression type pryamids are some of the more popular for building muscle and strength.

The following workout is an intermediate - advanced pyramid workout designed to create muscle and strength. Remember, this workout has alot of volume to it so be prepared to work hard.

Here is the training sequence:

Day 1 Workout A
Day 2
Workout B
Day 3
Day 4
Workout A
Day 5 Workout B
Day 6 Rest (Cardio Optional)
Day 7 Rest

Let's take a look at the workout:

Workout Points

Duration: 6 - 8 weeks
Goal: Create muscle size and strength
Method: 4 workouts weekly

1/2 body trained at each workout

2 to 3 exercises per bodypart

First set is generally a warm up, weight is added on each successive set as the repetitions drop, the weight increases

Rest periods vary in duration

Cardio work at the end of each workout for 25 to 30 minutes

Long walk each day when practicial

Try performing workout A on Monday and Thrursday and workout B on Tuesday and Friday

Rest on days 3, 6 and 7.

You can also alternate workouts A and B three days per week allowing at least 1 day of rest in between workouts

Don't tire yourself out on the first few sets. Keep the weight moderate and save your strength for the very last set .

Remember to use a spotter on those heavy sets.

The Workout

Day 1 Workout A - Chest / Back / Biceps
Exercise Sets Reps Rest
Flat dumbbell bench press 5 12, 8, 6, 4, 2 1 minute
Incline dumbbell press 4 15, 10, 8, 6, 6 1 minute
Dumbbell pull over 3 12 1 minute
Front pull downs 5 12, 8, 6, 6, 6 1 minute
Weighed incline sit ups 4 15, 10, 8, 6 1 minute
Power cleans from floor 3 8 1 minute
Barbell curls 4 10, 8, 6, 4 1 minute
Dumbbell concentration curls 3 15, 10, 6 1 minute
Barbell wrist curls 3 15 1 minute
Weighted incline sit ups 4 20, 15, 12, 8 1 minute
Cardio Perform for 20 to 25 minutes at moderate pace.
Day 2 Workout B - Legs / Shoulders / Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps Rest
Squats 5 12, 8, 6, 4, 4 2 minutes
Leg curls 5 12, 8, 6, 4, 4 1 minute
Hack squats 3 15 1 minute
Barbell military front press 5 10, 8, 6, 6, 6 1 minute
Dumbbell side laterals 3 12, 8, 6 1 minute
Close grip bench press 4 10, 8, 6, 4 1 minute
Triceps pressdowns 3 8 1 minute
Seated calf raise 5 20, 15, 10, 8, 8 1 minute
Cardio Perform for 20 to 25 minutes at moderate pace.

I suggest using this workout for a period 6 to 8 weeks. However, if the workout is producing positive results try using it for another 3 to 6 weeks.

I recommend taking a two week break after using this type of routine to give your joints and tendons some rest.

If you have any questions about this program, please email me at:

buildingmuscle101 @ (please excuse the spaces - avoid spam bots)

Need Help?

Don't know where to start? Don't know which type of program to follow to reach your goals? Don't know how many calories you should be eating? Let me help you. I can help you clear away the confusion and provide you with some expert advice on how to get started or what to do next. Just go to this page here and fill out the online form and hit submit. I'll get back to you with a short report (I won't collect your email address or spam you) - Blake

All the best,


As the owner of Building Muscle 101, I am committed to providing you the best practical weight training advice. I've been training for over 24 years (and still train to this day!) and the advice and guidance I provide comes directly from my experience and knowledge.

Home > General Routines > Beginner and Intermediate Routines