So I’ve got to share something with you guys that I’ve been completely obsessed. First off, if you’re one of our faithful, you know how much I talk about hyper-variation….switching up your routine every 4-6 weeks…not the standard 2-3 months as most of the fitness talking heads recommend. If you’re not one of the faithful and you’ve stumbled upon this, well, you’re probably looking for a new workout program, so keep reading.
The beauty of this muscle-building workout program is that it works so freaking effectively for ANYONE. I’ve been using this with my clients, some of our FitPlan members, as well as myself for the past 5 weeks. I don’t want to overstate things, but the amount of muscle growth that some of these clients have experienced is like nothing I’ve ever seen.
I’ve scoured the peer-review sites looking for some scientific studies into this type of training to back what I’m spewing, but there’s been none to be found. I’m fairly confident this model of training just hasn’t been widespread enough to warrant that kind of attention. But let’s not let that hold us back. If you’re looking to build muscle – especially if you’ve always been one of those people who adds muscle slowly – this plan is for you.
Not only that, I’ve noticed my fat burning potential has spiked while on this plan. This isn’t too surprising as we know adding muscle does wonders for your metabolism and fat loss. Overall, this plan is a total body conditioner that focuses heavily on the weights. Check it out below, give it a try, and if you’ve got any questions or concerns, leave a comment below.
The Hi/Low Workout Program
So this one got its name due to the alternating nature of lift days. We got high weight/high sets one day, then switch it up and go low weight/low sets the next. We break things up into two days of upper and two days of lower body per week. This workout program is super intense, so I’d recommend four days max in the gym unless you’re already highly conditioned. In that case I’d throw in a little yoga, sprints, or core work on your 5th day.
So you’re probably wondering what “high weight” and “low weight” means. This is obviously variable, but for most people, I’d recommend going 25% above your working weight for high weight days. If you typically perform 3 sets of 10 dumbbell shoulder press with 20 pound dumbbells…..you’d go for 25 pounds. For those sets with less reps (4-5) consider bumping your weight by 30-45%. On low weight days, drop your weight by about 20% or so you’re fatiguing on the last rep or two. Play around with things and find your sweet spot.
Last thing I want to add before we get into it – if you see “(short rest)” listed after an exercise, this means you should limit rest breaks to no more than 20-30 seconds. For all other exercises use your standard 60-75 seconds rest between sets.
Day 1 Upper Body – High Weight/High Sets
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Bench Press
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Incline Bench Press
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Clean and Press
- 6-7 sets x 4-5 reps Dumbbell Shoulder Press (short rest)
- 6-7 sets x 4-5 Incline Dumbbell Flys (short rest)
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Close Grip Bench Press
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Tricep Rope Push Down
Day 2 Lower Body – High Weight/High Sets
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Barbell or Smith Machine Squats
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Quad Extensions
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Deadlifts (pleaseeee use proper form or skip this exercise if you’re a beginner)
- 5-6 sets x 6-8 reps Hamstring Curls
- 6-7 sets x 4-5 reps Barbell Lunges (short rest)
- 6-7 sets x 4-5 reps Dumbbell Bulgarian Squat (short rest)
Day 3 Upper Body – Low Weight/Low Sets
- 2 sets x 25-30 reps Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns
- 2 sets x 25-30 reps Bent Over Barbell Rows
- 2 sets x 30-35 reps Seated Rows
- 2-3 sets x 15-25 reps Barbell Curls
- 2-3 sets x 15-25 reps Reverse Flys
- 2 sets x 25-30 reps Hammer Curls
Day 4 – REST
Day 5 – Lower Body Low Weight/Low Sets
- 3 sets x 30 reps Dumbbell Squat Jumps
- 2 sets x 25-30 reps X Jumps
- 2 sets x 25-30 reps Bulgarian Squat Jumps
- 2-3 sets x 15-25 reps Squat Twists
- 2 sets x 25-35 reps Surrender Squats
- 2 sets x 50 reps Bench Hops
As always, leave a comment if you’ve got any questions or concerns!
Photo above credit to Arya Zial