Intermediate Workout Plan

Intermediate Home Bodybuilding Workout

If you can do 10 good pushups and 3 good pullups then this workout is appropriate for you, otherwise, stick with the beginning workout plan.

At this stage you have the feel for the exercises and are starting to push yourself harder so you get sore the day after the workout.  Because you are pushing yourself harder, it takes you longer to recover between workouts so you are on a 3 day on, 1 day off workout cycle so each bodypart gets exercises once every four days.

The only equipment you need to do this workout is a pullup bar and a used weight set from a garage sale. Please don’t waste money on new equipment, you can get it used for pennies on the dollarfrom craigslist. For a used weight set, expect to pay 10 cents to 50 cents per pound. Remember, your muscles don’t care if your weights are new, shiny, and chrome or rusty, used, and cast iron – don’t waste money on new stuff, buy used and save money! You can make your own pullup bar with $5 of metal toprail from a hardware store or buy a no-mar, door mount pullup bar.

Please remember, working out without maintaining proper nutrition will drastically limit your results. If you dont understand my nutrition section then consider the book Bodybuilding Revealed which has the best coverage of bodybuilding nutrition I have seen (Read my review). Having healthy, tasty, easy to make recipies is key to good nutrition. If my free healthy recipes dont appeal to you then consider buying this bodybuilding cookbook (read my review).

Day 1 – Push Workout

BodypartExerciseNumber setsNumber reps
absrotisserie core workout2 revolutionsn/a
chestdumbbell press3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
chestdumbbell flys3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
shouldersalternating dumbell press3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
shouldersside raise3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
tricepsdumbbell french press3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

Day 2 – Pull Workout

BodypartExerciseNumber setsNumber reps
latsoverhand pullups3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
latsbarbell row3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
latsunderhand pullups3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
bicepsdumbbell curls3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
bicepshammer curls3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

Day 3 – Legs Workout

BodypartExerciseNumber setsNumber reps
absrotisserie core workout2 revolutionsn/a
legslunges3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12 each leg
legsSDL3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
legscalf raises3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
legsgoblet chair squats3 sets, 1-2min rest between6-12
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

 
Day 4: Rest day.  Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike
Day 5: Back to day 1 push workout.
 

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When you stop seeing improvement in terms of your strength or the number of reps you can do, its time to move up to the advanced workout.  Don’t be too hasty though, stick with this workout until you can do 10 pullups and 20 pushups.

 
Choosing the right weight. In your workouts above, a range of repetitions is given. Choose a weight heavy enough so that you can only do 12 reps with flawless, slow form as I illustrate in the video for each exercise. If you can do more than 12 reps, add weight. If you can’t do at least 6 reps, then lower the weight. Use this same weight for all your sets of this exercise, naturally you will do fewer each subsequent set as you become more tired. As long as you can still do at least 6 reps, keep using that same weight. If you become so tired that you cant do that 6 reps with proper form then decrease the weight.

How much rest between sets? Start with about 90 seconds rest between sets. If you are feeling rushed, increase it to 2 minutes, if you are feeling bored then decrease it to 60 seconds. If you want to save time, you can superset exercises. For example you could do dumbbell press, then without any rest, do the dumbbell flys. Other good exercises to superset:

  • lats: overhand pullups and dumbbell rows
  • legs: stiff legged dead lifts and calve raises
  • shoulders: shoulder side raise and reverse flys

Other Important Topics:

If you have been doing my intermediate workout, you will notice that the main difference with this advanced intermediate workout is that each muscle is only being worked out once a week rather than three times a week as it was in the beginning workout, most people have trouble with this concept – less is more! You are working out far less often but you are working out each muscle with much more intensity and for a longer duration. In the intermediate workout, you were only working out chest for about 5minutes but doing it 3 times a week (15min total/week). In this advanced intermediate workout you only workout chest once a week but do it for 20 minutes. Since you are working out much more intensely, the body needs much more time to recuperate and rebuild your muscles.

Bodybuilding does not end when you leave the gym!

Many bodybuilders make the mistake of thinking that their work ends when they leave the gym, wrong! If you have followed the advice on my beginning workout plan you have already made a good start in learning about nutritional basics. As an advanced intermediate you need to continue learning, again, spend at least an hour a week reading about nutrition and bodybuilding. Try to get to the point that you can look at a meal and accurately guess the calories, grams of protein, grams of fiber and grams of fat. Start learning about some more advanced bodybuilding techniques like drop sets and supersets. You spend at least 5 hours in the gym a week, why not maximize your results by doing an hour of research each week? The more you read and learn, the faster your bodybuilding progress will be! Start with this website but don’t stop here, I’m just one person. Look on the internet, go to your public library (best option) or buy some of the recommended books.

Its important to note that there are many different goals people have when they are lifting weights. Most arguments about what is the “best workout plan” result because the people arguing have different priorities on the following workout goals:

  • Increase strength
  • Increase impulse strength (jumping/punching/kicking)
  • Increase muscle mass
  • Lower bodyfat
  • Improve coordination
  • Improve balance
  • Increase endurance
  • Increase speed
  • Increase flexibility
  • Minimize risk of injury
  • Reduce stress
  • Improve vitals (BP, lipid levels, etc)
  • Improve sleep patterns
  • Improve self confidence

In my workouts on this website, I have come up with a good general purpose workouts that give the most benefit with the least risk for the largest number of people. If you are a cage fighter or will be powerlifting in the next olympics, these workouts will help you but wont be optimal for your needs.