Workout Routine for College Students

Routine Type 4 days on 3 days off - High volume.
Duration 5 Weeks
Level Advanced
Purpose Build muscle mass and strength
Target For those individuals looking for an advanced high volume workout.

Hi, my name is Matt. I am currently enrolled in my college's personal training program. I have tried many different workouts, and this workout is great, as well as many others out there.

The whole concept of it is to trick your body and muscle memory. You can go to the gym a minimum of three days a week, although here is a 4, 5 or 6 day workout for the more serious lifters.

Many people always do lower back along with upper back, although I prefer to include lower back in the legs workout, since it is part of your lower body, and is being worked anyways through stiff-legged deadlifts and squats.

You never want to work Chest or Shoulders the day after you do Triceps, because Triceps are used so much those days, and also in effect you could over-train them.

Don't do Biceps the day after Upper Back. I didn't include abs in the workout, so you could always go a different day to do abs, or do them after any workout, except for the Legs & Lower Back day. To do abs, go to the gym on an empty stomach so you burn more of the body fat instead of the carbohydrates.

Do 20 minutes of cardio BEFORE your workout, and then do weighted ab exercises where you can bang out no higher than 10 or 12 reps. Any other day, if you wish to do cardio, then save it for after your workout, so you don't tire your muscles out. Always do Triceps BEFORE Biceps. Doing biceps first causes the blood to flow to that muscle, and you won't be able to get the full range of motion required to do Triceps.

You want to start off small, and each week add more sets, although you don't want to add too much. 9 sets for minor muscles, 12-15 for major. If you are planning to take a week or two off, then it is OK to overtrain yourself during that final week, as long as you don't do the same muscle two different days that same week.

Your split can look like this:

(I will include the sets, but not the reps. You covered the 10 week repetition cycle very well in your e-Book... For most body parts, you can use the same rep range as Chest throughout that whole week, although you don't want to lower the reps too much for minor muscles, and for Upper Back you don't want to go TOO heavy, otherwise you won't get the full motion.)

The Workout

Week 1
Muscle Group Exercise Sets / Reps
Day 1 - Legs & Lower Back Leg press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg extensions 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Calf raises 3 x 20 reps
Stiff leg deadlifts 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Day 2 - Chest Flat Bench Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Dumbbell Press 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Cable Flies 3 x 15 reps
Incline Dumbbell Flies 3 x 15 reps
Upper Back & Forearms Chin-Ups 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Barbell Row 4 x 12 reps
Wide Lat Pulldown 3 x 15 reps
Seated Neutral-Grip Cable Row 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Seated Forearm Barbell Curls 4 x 15 - 20 reps
Day 4 - Shoulders & Traps Arnolds (Overhead Twisted Dumbbells) 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Side Raises 2 x 15 reps
Front Raises 2 x 15 reps
Shrugs 5 x 15 reps
Triceps & Biceps Dips (Body Weight) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Skull Crushers 3 x 12 reps
Cable Tricep Pushdowns 3 x 15 reps
Standing Barbell Curls 3 x 12 reps
Dumbbell Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Cable Curls 3 x 15 reps
Week 2
Muscle Group Exercise Sets / Reps
Day 1 - Chest Flat Bench Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Smith Machine Barbell 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Dumbbell Flies 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Cable Flies 3 x 20 reps
Day 2 - Legs & Lower Back Squats 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Calf Raises 3 x 15 reps
Leg Extensions 3 x 15 reps
Hyperextensions  
Day 4 - Shoulders and Traps Overhead Barbell Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Overhead Press Machine (Neutral Grip) 4 x 12 reps
Front Raises 3 x 15 reps
Side Raises 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Shrugs 4 x 15 - 20 reps
Upper Back & Forearms One Arm Dumbbell Row 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Grip Pull Ups (As wide as possible) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
T-Bar Rows 3 x 12 reps
Neutral Grip Cable Pulldowns 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Behind-the-Back
Barbell Forearm Curls
4 x 15 reps
Triceps & Biceps French Press (Seated Triceps Extensions) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Triceps Dip 3 x 12 reps
Dumbbell KickBacks 3 x 15 reps
Standing Barbell Curls 3 x 12 reps
Dumbbell Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Preacher Curls 3 x 15 reps
Week 3
Muscle Group Exercise Sets / Reps
Day 1 - Shoulders and Traps Side Raises 3 x 12 reps
Overhead Dumbbell Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Front Raises 2 x 12 - 15 reps
Shrugs 5 x 15 - 20 reps
Day 2 - Chest Smith Machine Flat Bench 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Barbell Press 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Dumbbell Flies 3 x 15 reps
Pec Deck (or any Wide Chest Cable/ Machine) 3 x 15 reps
Day 3 - Legs and Lower Back Leg Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Squats 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Calf Raises on the Leg Press 3 x 20 reps
Stiff Leg Deadlifts 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg Extensions 3 x 15 - 20 reps
Day 4 - Upper Back & Forearms T-Bar Rows 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Grip Lat Machine Pulldowns 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Neutral Grip or Towel Pull-Ups 4 x 12 reps
Behind-the-Back
Barbell Forearm Curls
4 x 15 reps
Triceps & Biceps Smith Machine Close-Grip Bench (Use only the top 1/3 of the motion and heavy weight) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Decline Skull Crushers 3 x 12 reps
One-Handed Tricep Cable Curls 3 x 15 reps each arm
One Handed Bicep Cable Curls 3 x 12 reps each arm
Dumbbell Curls (on Incline Bench) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Barbell Curls 3 x 15 reps
Week 4
Muscle Group Exercise Sets / Reps
Day 1 - Shoulders and Traps Overhead Smith Machine Barbell Press 3 x 12 reps
Arnold Press 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Front Raises 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Shrugs 5 x 15 - 20 reps
Day 2 - Legs and Lower Back Leg Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Stiff Leg Deadlift 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg Extensions 3 x 20 reps
Leg Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Hyperextensions 3 x 15 - 20 reps
Day 3 - Triceps & Biceps Close Grip Bench Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Overhead Triceps Dumbbell Press 3 x 12 reps
Dips 2 x 15 reps
Barbell Curls 3 x 12 reps
Dumbbell Curls (on Incline Bench) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Preacher Curls 3 x 15 reps
Day 5 - Chest Incline Barbell Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Flat Bench Dumbbell Press 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Dumbbell Flies 3 x 15 reps
Incline Dumbbell Flies 3 x 15 reps
Upper Back & Forearms One Arm Dumbbell Row 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Wide Grip Pull Ups (As wide as possible) 3 x 12 - 15 reps
T-Bar Rows 3 x 12 reps
Neutral Grip Cable Pulldowns 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Behind-the-Back
Barbell Forearm Curls
4 x 15 reps
Week 5
Muscle Group Exercise Sets / Reps
Day 1 - Triceps & Biceps Dips (Weighted) 3 x 12 reps
Incline Skull Crushers 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Triceps Cable Pushdowns 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Dumbbell Curls 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Cable Curls 3 x 12 reps
Preacher Curls 3 x 12 reps
Shoulders and Traps Overhead Press Machine (Neutral Grip) 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Overhead Dumbbell Press 2 x 12 - 15 reps
Side Raises 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Shrugs 5 x 12 - 15 reps
Day 3 - Chest Barbell Bench Press 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Pec Deck Machine 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Incline Dumbbell Flies 3 x 15 reps
Incline Cable Flies 3 x 15 reps
Day 4 - Legs and Lower Back Squats 4 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg Curls 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Leg Extenstions 3 x 20 reps
Stiff Leg Deadlifts 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Calf Raises 3 x 15 - 20 reps
Deadlifts 3 x 12
Day 5 - Upper Back & Forearms Wide Grip Chins 3 x 12 - 15 reps
T-Bar Rows 4 x 12 reps
One Arm Dumbbell Row 3 x 12 - 15 reps
Reverse Curls 4 x 15 reps
Dumbbell Forearm Curls 3 x 15 reps

That is an example of a good workout for the 1st five weeks of the cycle. The next 5 weeks should continue to progressively increase intensity at a consistent pace. Feel free to throw in new exercises into your workout in place of similar ones. Always change the order of muscles worked in your split, for this 10 week cycle at least. Feel free to try different types of shrugs, whether they will be neutral grip, behind the back, or with dumbbells. Don't throw too many sets in for any specific muscle.

On some legs days, you can split the sets between squats and leg press. Once your 8-10 weeks of this workout is up, take your break. The next cycle should be for one month only, but you want to superset close to every exercise (except for lower back) for the entire month. Be creative when supersetting, whether it is Close Grip Bench to Dips, Bench Press to Flies, Pull-Ups to Lat Pushdowns... the combinations are endless.

You can even do giant sets, which are 3 different consecutive exercises for the same muscle. When doing supersets or giant sets, remember to rest at least 1 and a half to 2 minutes, but not longer than 3, between each set. Instead of avoiding exercises that you don't like, initiate your workouts with them, and get stronger in those areas.

There are so many different aspects of weightlifting, and the personal training field is full of various opinions. What I have here is just one method of working out that works great. I do appreciate feedback whether it is positive or negative. Hope you enjoy the workout.

-Matt from NJ

Editors Note* This is a high volume workout which requires time and effort, this type of routine is for the advanced trainer.

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