Old Intermediate Workout Plan

Intermediate Workout Plan

This intermediate workout is appropriate if you can do 4 pushups and 1 good pullup, otherwise, stick with the beginning workout plan. If you are not sure this is the right workout for you, please use my personalized workout planner, it will design a custom workout program for you.

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 dollar from 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.

If you are not sure this is the right workout for you, please use my personalized workout planner, it will design a custom workout program for you.

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).

Monday

Bodypart Exercise Number sets Number reps Tempo
abs crunches 3 8-30 1s up 1s dn
lats pullups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
lats dumbbell rows 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest pushups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest dumbbell flys 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
legs lunges 3 8-15 (each leg)
biceps barbell curls 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
triceps dumbbell french press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
shoulders alternating dumbbell press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
shoulders side raise 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

Wednesday

Bodypart Exercise Number sets Number reps Tempo
abs crunches 3 8-30 1s up 1s dn
lats pullups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
lats dumbbell rows 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest pushups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest dumbbell flys 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
legs lunges 3 8-15 (each leg)
biceps barbell curls 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
triceps dumbbell french press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
shoulders alternating dumbbell press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
shoulders side raise 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

Friday

Bodypart Exercise Number sets Number reps Tempo
abs crunches 3 8-30 1s up 1s dn
lats pullups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
lats dumbbell rows 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest pushups 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
chest dumbbell flys 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
legs lunges 3 8-15 (each leg)
biceps barbell curls 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
triceps dumbbell french press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
shoulders alternating dumbbell press 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
ahoulders side raise 3 8-15 2s up 2s dn
Weights: 60 minutes & Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday

Cardio: 20 minutes – jog, brisk walk or bike

When you stop seeing improvement in terms of your strength or the number of reps you can do, its time to move up to theadvanced intermediate workout.  Don’t be too hasty though, stick with this workout until you can do 5 pullups and 10 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 15 reps with flawless, slow form as I illustrate in the video for each exercise. If you can do more than 15 reps, add weight. If you can’t do at least 8 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 8 reps, keep using that same weight. If you become so tired that you cant do that 8 reps with proper form then decrease the weight.

How much rest between sets? Start with about 60 seconds rest between sets. If you are feeling rushed, increase it to 90 seconds, if you are feeling bored then decrease it to 45 seconds. If you want to save time, you can superset exercises. For example you could do the pushups, then without any rest, do the dumbbell flys. Other good exercises to superset:

  • lats: pullups and dumbbell rows
  • arms: barbell curls and dumbbell french press
  • shoulders: shoulder side raise and alternating dumbbell press

Other Important Topics:

Many people make the mistake of sticking to this whole-body three times a week workout strategy way too long, they add fancy exercises and big weights but keep this basic schedule. The problem is that once you reach the intermediate level, you are working out with sufficient intensity that your body requires 5-7 days to recuperate and rebuild the muscles. If you stick to the 3x/week plan, your progress will plateau because your body does not have time to rebuild the muscles before you break them down again – this is called overtraining and its the second most common problem limiting a bodybuilders progress.

Just a quick word about motivation, for many people this is the worst problem. What often happens is that somebody starts working out January First and their goal is to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger by springtime. After a month of lifting they give up because their muscles haven’t started ripping out of their shirt yet. Its really important to have realistic expectations and the proper mind set so that you look forward to every workout. What I suggest is that rather than focusing on the future, live in the here and now. Enjoy how it makes you feel NOW. Enjoy the fact that you are a little bit stronger than you were last week, you did 1/2 rep more! Enjoy how your workout has perked you up, you were yawning beforehand but now you are invigorated. Enjoy the feeling of pushing your body to is limits. When your alarm goes off at 5am for your workout, don’t think about how you want to look like Arnold – that unobtainable goal will just cause you to hit the snooze button. Its much better to think about how good it will feel to workout! THAT will get you out of bed!

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.