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Thread: Thinking of Starting a Low Volume Routine

  1. #1
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    Thinking of Starting a Low Volume Routine

    I've been doing basically the exact same routine since I started working out last February and I've made great progress, but I think it's finally time for a change. As you can tell, I don't really belive that you have to keep switching up your routine for results, but I think I've gotten to the point where I'm fairly advanced (275 bench, 300+ squat) and keeping the same volume of my old routine is leading me to overtraining with the weights I'm currenly using.

    In addition, my arms are greatly lagging behind the rest of my body, so I'm thinking of having a dedicated day for arms. I currently train back and bis together and chest and tris, and I guess I emphasize the large muscle groups too much (I know, blasphemy) becuase my chest and back are huge compared to my arms

    So I'm thinking of doing the following



    Day 1-Back
    Weighted Chins-3 sets of 6-8
    T Bar Rows-3 sets of 6-8
    Cable Rows or Dumbell Rows-3 sets of 6-8

    Day 2-Chest
    Bench Press-3 sets of 6-8
    Flat Dumbell Flys-3 sets of 6-8
    Incline Dumbell Press-3 sets of 6-8

    Day 3-Legs
    Squats-4 sets of 6-8
    Leg Press-3 sets of 6-8

    Day 4-Off

    Day 5-Bis/Tris/Delts
    Barbell Curls-3 sets of 6-8
    Close Grip Bench-3 sets of 6-8
    Dumbell Preacher Curls-2 sets of 6-8
    Cable Pushdowns-2 sets of 6-8
    Dumbell Overhead Press-3 sets of 6-8

    Day 6-Off or abs/calves/lower back/traps

    Day 7-Off or abs/calves/lower back/traps

    It may seem like too little volume for legs, but I've been doing just squats and leg press for legs for a while now, and I've been progressing steadily every week. Since I got really focused on squatting, I've went from 185 for reps to 265 for reps (same form, I get my cousin to spot me every set and tell me when I'm deep enough) in about 6 weeks, while cutting, so the leg routine is working for me. My legs are probably the largest part of my body as well, I don't really see the need for additional leg work. In fact, the success I've had doing legs with so few sets was the thing that led me to want to try low volume in the first place.

    I was also thinking of throwing in a day for miscellaneous work like abs, lower back, traps and calves

    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
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    Someone comment please!

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    Help...

  4. #4
    Team Stocky Member. Killa Kurt's Avatar
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    I started WBB Routine 1, after years of different routines, and im getting good results, comparing the two workouts, WBB is less volume, and im getting comparably, the same results as i did previously. Nothing wrong with cutting back volume.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Killa Kurt
    I started WBB Routine 1, after years of different routines, and im getting good results, comparing the two workouts, WBB is less volume, and im getting comparably, the same results as i did previously. Nothing wrong with cutting back volume.
    Thanks for the input, anybody else have any feedback?

  6. #6
    zen idiot Scott S's Avatar
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    Are your shoulders also "too big"? I'd put the shoulder pressing before all the rest of the tricep stuff.

    You can take this however you want, but I think you'd get great results taking those 7-9 sets you do for everything and splitting that up through the week. I'm a big fan of pairing chest and back work, so I'd do 4 sets each of bench and rowing on, say Monday and Thursday.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott S
    Are your shoulders also "too big"? I'd put the shoulder pressing before all the rest of the tricep stuff.

    You can take this however you want, but I think you'd get great results taking those 7-9 sets you do for everything and splitting that up through the week. I'm a big fan of pairing chest and back work, so I'd do 4 sets each of bench and rowing on, say Monday and Thursday.
    I feel like my shoulders get enough work during chest and back day, if I hit my shoulders hard by themselves, they're often still sore when it comes time for chest (bench press especailly). In addition, the rest of my arms need to catch up with my shoulders


    I'll think about splitting the exercises up througout the week, I've never considered that before, thanks

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    Anybody else have any input, I'm thinking of throwing deadlifts in with Back day, I tried it today and it felt good. I'm kind of worried about squatting and deadlifting every week though, will that lead to overtraining?

  9. #9
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    Do Chris Mason, Paul Stagg, HomeYield or any of the other veterans around here have any input on this?

  10. #10
    HomeYield WillKuenzel's Avatar
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    It looks good. Personally I favor higher volume (total at the end of the week) over low volume.

    I might move the rest day before legs, or do traps and abs then and later do calves and lower back on Saturday. I also might suggest doing SLDL's or RDL's in place of the leg press. It doesn't really seem like you are getting too much hamstring work unless you are using a wide competitive squat stance. Everything else looks good. Rep ranges are fine. Are you training to failure?
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomeYield
    It looks good. Personally I favor higher volume (total at the end of the week) over low volume.

    I might move the rest day before legs, or do traps and abs then and later do calves and lower back on Saturday. I also might suggest doing SLDL's or RDL's in place of the leg press. It doesn't really seem like you are getting too much hamstring work unless you are using a wide competitive squat stance. Everything else looks good. Rep ranges are fine. Are you training to failure?
    Thanks a lot for the advice, it is appreciated. I guess I do need to put in some hamstring work, do you think the deadlifts on back day are enough? I have found my hamstrings get worked well by squats and especailly leg press, but I'll definitely consider adding in another exercise for them

    I have a bad habit of wanting to train to failure on every set, I've seen goood progress doing it that way but now I'm trying to stop maybe 1 rep short of failure these days and focusing primarily on progression

  12. #12
    HomeYield WillKuenzel's Avatar
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    Maybe take out one set of leg presses and work in 2 sets of some form of deadlift on leg day. Be it either Romanian or stiff leg, they'll help you out a good bit.

    There's nothing really wrong with training to failure. The only problem I've had is that sometimes it can prevent me from training more. If I train to failure, I have to rest longer. If I don't, I can train again sooner and get more work done. Either way, there's a fine line to walk there. Sort of like the diminishing margin of returns. Failure can be a good way to progress but it can cut in on how much you can train. On the other hand, not training to failure, you can train again sooner but you might not push yourself as hard and make the gains as quick. Its walking that line of training hard enough to make the gains but not training so hard that you have to rest so much that you are resting more than you really should be.
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  13. #13
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    Is your new routine lower volume than the old one? If so, how much lower?
    Last edited by chris mason; 07-21-2004 at 06:04 PM.


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    Quote Originally Posted by chris mason
    Is your new routine lower volume than the old one? If so, how much lower?
    It's about 1/2 the volume of the old one, with the exception of leg day, which I kept the same. Actually, now that I think about it, the volume isn't THAT much lower, it's just that chest and back day are now both much lower volume because I'm not working tris and bis on those days as well. I used to have an entire day for shoulders and abs, but I cut that out, and now I'll work abs in on the miscellaneous day along with lower back, calves and traps, if I have the time and energy. The arm day is completely new


    I just got back from the gym, and I have to say I'm impressed. I basically set or came close to PRs in all 3 exercises I did. Even more impressive is that this is after cutting about 15lbs from about 193 to 177 since the middle of May. For example, Incline Dumbell Bench was my last exercise, and I managed to do 2 sets of 6 at 65lbs, and one set at 60lbs which is something I have never done before (my previous best is 2 sets of 6 at 60lbs).

    Now I know that the reason for this is because I'm not as fatigued by the time I get to incline dumbell press becuase I don't have to do as many exercises before I get there (plus the fact that I've increase my cals since I finished my cut), but I was wondering if maybe this extra weight I'm using will lead to more hypertrophy. I kind of had the feeling that I was getting to the point of diminishing returns by doing so many sets on chest/tris day. I usually do dips last and my dips reps and weight braely ever increase becuase I'm so fatigued by the time I get to them

    I know I may not have explained all of this adequately, so let me know if you have any questions. You're actually the person that told me to drop some sets out of my old routine, so I took your advice

    Here's what I did today for chest:

    Bench Press-225*6, 4, 215*5
    Dumbell Flys-65lbs*6,6,6
    Incline Dumbell Press-65*6,6, 60*6

    Last Week's (well 5 days ago) Chest/Tris Day was:

    Bench-225*5, 215*5, 205*5
    Flys-65*6, 60*7,6
    Close Grip Bench-155*10, 6, 5
    Incline Dumbell Press-60*5, 55*7,6
    Dips-BW*8,7
    Pushdowns-120*8, 7

  15. #15
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    If going low volume you could do something like the following. I know you said that you train back and biceps together and chest and triceps together before, so I switched it up a bit, so you are working chest and biceps together and back and triceps together.

    Monday:Chest and Biceps
    *Flat Bench Press 2 x 8
    *Incline Bench Press 2 x 8
    *Dips 1 x 8
    *Straight Bar Curl 2 x 8
    *Hammer Curl 1 x 8
    *Abs 2 x 25

    Wednesday:Legs and Shoulders
    *Squat 2 x 8
    *Romanian Deadlift 2 x 8
    *Front Squat 1 x 8
    *Standing Calf Raise 2 x 8
    *Seated Calf Raise 1 x 12-15
    *Military Press 2 x 8
    *Side Lateral Raise 1 x 8
    *Rear Lateral Raise 1 x 8
    *Shrug 2 x 8

    Friday: Back and Triceps
    *Deadlift 2 x 8
    *Pull Up 1 x 8
    *Bent Row 2 x 8
    *Chin Up 1 x 8
    *Close Grip Bench Press 2 x 8
    *Skullcrusher 1 x 8
    *Abs 2 x 25

    Just an idea

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