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Review of Lee Hayward’s 12 week bodybuilding program

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Review of Lee Hayward’s 12 week bodybuilding program

I realized that there was a big hole in my “choosing the best workout program” page.  I show workouts like SS and 5×5 which are heavily dependent on squats and deadlifts but are not appropriate for bodybuilders.  I show home bodybuilding workouts which are great for a lot of people, like myself,   but I didnt include any gym workout plans for bodybuilders.    Lee Hayward’s 12 week bodybuilding program is a great example of this type of workout.  Its a great combination of isolation exercises with squats and deadlifts to maximize muscle mass gain while keeping muscle sizes in proportion to each other (ie, no T-Rex mode) .  Its a great example of the type of workout you would need to do to win bodybuilding contests, who knows, Arnold may have done a similar workout at some point 🙂    For pure strength trainers, this workout would not have enough deadlifting and squats to make them happy.  For those with a history of lower back issues, this workout has too much deadlifting and squats.  For young men and women with no lower back pain issues, Lee’s program will help you pack on the strength and symmetrical muscle mass as fast as humanly possible.  Please read about expectations before you go thinking you can look like Lee Hayward himself in a few years – its not going to happen!  Lee Hayward points out something very, very important – “Everything works, but nothing works forever.”  In other words, this is a great program but like with all other great programs – dont stay on it more than a few months!

Warning, this is NOT a beginners workout plan.  Unless you have been lifting at least 6 months doing something similar to my beginning workout plan, you have no business doing this workout.  Here are full details on Lee Hayward’s 12 week bodybuilding / strength training program, below is a summary just to help you see at a glance what its about so you can compare it to other workout plans.  By the way, despite the fact that Lee Hayward recommends Vince DelMonte’s eBook (featured in my fitness hall of shame), he seems like a good guy – please give Lee your support!

Weeks 1,2,3

Day Exercise Quantity Number reps
Mon squats 5 sets 5
deadlifts 5 sets 8
standing calf raises 5 sets 10
roman chair leg raises 5 sets 10
incline sit ups 5 sets 10-20
Tue incline bench press 5 sets 5
seated dumbbell shoulder press 5 sets 8
cable curls 5 sets 8
tricep cable push downs 5 sets 10
bent over dumbbell reverse flys 3 sets 15
Thu leg press 4 sets 15
leg curls 4 sets 15
wide grip cable pull down 4 sets 15
hyperextensions 4 sets 10
cable crunches 4 sets 15
Fri incline dumbbell press 4 sets 10
dumbbell side raise 4 sets 10
dumbbell curls 4 sets 12
tricep cable rope push downs 4 sets 12
vertical barbell rows 3 sets 15

 

Weeks 4,5,6

Day Exercise Quantity Number reps
Mon bent over barbell rows 5 sets 8
barbell shrugs 5 sets 10
leg extensions 5 sets 10
leg curls 5 sets 10
seated calf raise 5 sets 10-20
Tue decline bench press 5 sets 5
military press 5 sets 8
preacher barbell curls 5 sets 10
skullcrushers 5 sets 10
cable upright rows 3 sets 15
Thu hack squat 4 sets 15
stiff legged dead lift 4 sets 15
seated narrow grip cable rows 4 sets 15
leg raises 4 sets 12
crunches 4 sets 25+
Fri flat dumbbell press 4 sets 10
dumbbell front raises 4 sets 10
bicep barbell curls 4 sets 12
tricep cable push down with V bar 4 sets 12
narrow grip cable pull downs 3 sets 15

 

Weeks 7,8,9

Day Exercise Quantity Number reps
Mon squats 5 sets 5
partial dead lifts 5 sets 5
pullups 4 sets max
cable crunches 5 sets 10
leg raises 5 sets 10
Tue flat bench press 5 sets 5
reverse flys 4 sets 10
seated dumbell side and front raises 4 sets 10
cable curls 5 sets 10
tricep push downs 5 sets 10
Thu hack squat 5 sets 10
leg press 4 sets 15
chest supported row 4 sets 10
hyperextensions 4 sets 10
cable crunches 4 sets 15
Fri dumbbell bench press on stability ball 4 sets 10
dumbbell shoulder press sitting on stability ball 4 sets 10
EZcurl bar curls 4 sets 12
one arm overhead dumbbel extensions 4 sets 12
single arm dumbbell rows 3 sets 15

Weeks 10,11,12

Day Exercise Quantity Number reps
Mon leg press 5 sets 5
stiff leg dead lifts 5 sets 5
wide grip cable pull downs 4 sets 10
incline sit ups 5 sets 15
leg raises 5 sets 15
Tue dips 5 sets 5
pullups 4 sets max
seated dumbbell side raise 4 sets 10
barbell military press 4 sets 10
dumbbell preacher curls & cable rope tricep push downs 5 sets 10
Thu squats 4 sets 15
leg curls 4 sets 15
leg extensions 4 sets 15
seated cable rows 4 sets 10
standing calf raise 4 sets 10
Fri pushups with feet on stability ball 4 sets max
seated dumbbell shoulder press 4 sets 10
standing one arm dumbbell curls 4 sets 12
one arm overhead dumbbel extensions 4 sets 12
narrow grip cable pulldown 3 sets 15

Looking fit is not the same as being fit

If your goal is to be the king of aesthetics, this workout is a great choice because it will help maximize your muscle mass gains, but remember that looking fit is not the same as being fit!  Please remember to do your cardio!  Its great that you are getting bigger than a horse and stronger than a bull but please do at least 20 minutes of cardio a day if you are doing this workout plan, 30 to 40 minutes is even better.  Your heart is the most important muscle in your body so please exercise it!  Eat clean, live clean, lift weights, get enough sleep, and do your cardio!

 

 

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