1. Being or occurring at the middle place, stage, or degree or between extremes
2. One who has mastered the basics, but has yet to reach the full level of potential
3. One who is ready for more in depth training, still needing growth and refinement while refinement is the secondary concern
You have reached to intermediate level of training and there is no better place to start then with steroid.coms intermediate training outline. If you are
here, then you have mastered the five points in the beginners outline:
1. Learning and applying proper form
2. Becoming accustomed to a strict and structured routine
3. Learning to feel the proper muscles working when doing exercises
4. Learning how to train with proper intensity
5. Learning how to train and eat correctly for the first time in your life
After you have mastered the five main points for a beginner in your training, added on a decent amount of size and strength and after increasing your
endurance for strict exercise, then and only then is it time to advance to the intermediate level.
The basics have been mastered, and the basics will still be the base of your routine. You will find this will be true no matter how long you lift. No
matter how advanced you become, certain things will always be staples, you will always squat, you will always press, you will always curl, etc. At this
stage it is time to add in some intensity increasing techniques and yes, we will be adding in new exercises to help stimulate more growth and development.
There will be several keys to your success and the rate at which this success is met. Several will be discussed here, but the biggest of all, what makes
any bodybuilder or health enthusiast successful is there diet. For complete guided diet information, see the steroid.com diet and nutritional outlines for
the best and latest insight on the best way to eat.
It does not matter how old you are, if you have mastered the beginners outline then you are ready for the intermediate level of training.
The form you use on these exercises is the most important aspect to your training next to consistency and diet. Without proper form, you may indeed make
some progress, some being the key word. Each one of these various exercises has a correct way to be performed, designed to hit the
targeted muscle perfectly and most efficiently. With improper form, it is easy to lead to injury; it is also very easy to take away from the muscle group
youre trying to work. So many will work their shoulders and triceps more than needed when trying to work chest because of improper form. So many will
involve their biceps and forearms more than needed when trying to work back; the list goes on and on.
No matter how advanced you may have become, your body will still need to rest. Our bodies actually grow while at rest, not when we are hitting the weights.
Now that youve mastered the basics, it will be time to split up your training a little more, this will mean more days in the gym, but it will also mean
its time to hit it even harder, so make your rest count.
***Note on rest: some will not be
able to split
their routine into more days per week. This is not the end of the world. If you still need to train your arms with other body parts then do so, but the
odds are in your favor for more development if arms are trained separately.
None of your training sessions should last more than one hour tops. This does not include any cardio or abdominal training you may do. Continually pounding
and pounding your muscles in two or three hour weight training sessions is a futile attempt and complete waste of time when it comes to building muscle.
The idea behind your workouts is Stimulation not Annihilation. Annihilation has its place in what you will undertake, but it should not be an every
time you go to the gym. This is a sure fire way to fry your Central Nervous System (CNS), as well as cause you to get burned out sooner then you should
have. If you do everything correctly, and if you keep your drive alive, there should never be a reason for you to burn out.
Consistency is one of the major keys to building any well-toned muscular physique. Develop a plan of attack and stick to it; you will need to schedule and
set aside time to train. Make training one of your priorities; it should become a regular part of your basic day. If youre sick, then do not go to the
gym, but only if you are truly sick. If you have a slight head cold or are just a little tired, push through it. Its very easy to find a million excuses
every day not to train. You have to make it a priority if you are going to succeed.
When you hit the gym it is important to hit the gym hard. Dont waste your time while training, get in get out and get the work done. A long-standing
question has been how hard do I need to exercise? You will need to train hard; no, you will not need to be on the verge of passing out every single set and
rep. However, keep the intensity high, limit rest between sets to 60-90 seconds and when you feel really good, dont be afraid to make the rest even
shorter at times. Longer rest periods can be acceptable, such as when youre doing heavy squats or dead lifts, say 120 seconds, but this should not be
-One thing is for certain; vigorous exercise is more beneficial then exercise alone. Studies have shown that vigorous exercise in healthy individuals can
increase endorphins in the body and create as strong state of increased positive hormone production. Meaning it can increase testosterone and growth
hormone levels within the body in ways moderate exercise cannot
Intermediate Male Training
Chest: (Workout A)
*Begin Each Workout with 3-4 sets of push-ups or light machine bench press 15-20 reps each
Incline Barbell Press: 2-3 Working Sets 8-12 reps each
Incline Dumbbell Flys: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Wide Grip Chest Press (Hammer Strength or Equivalent): 2-3 Sets 10-15 reps each
*End every other workout with 1 triple drop set of the exercise of your choice.
Chest: (Workout B)
Pec-Dek Flys super set w/Machine Bench: 3 Sets 10-12 reps each on both exercises
Incline Dumbbell Press: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Flat Barbell Bench Press: 3 Sets 8-12 reps each
Back: (Workout A)
*Begin each Workout with 2 light weight sets of Lat pull Downs, 20 reps each
Wide Grip Pull-Ups or Lat Pull Downs: 4 Sets 10-15 reps each
T-Bar rows: 3 Working Sets 8-10 reps each
Seated Cable Rows: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Rack Dead Lifts (Rack Pulls): 3 Working Sets 5-10 reps each
End every other workout with 1 triple drop set of the exercise of your choice.
Back: (Workout B)
Wide Grip T-Bar (neutral bar) Pull Downs: 4 Sets 10-15 reps each
Reverse Grip Barbell Rows: 3 Working Sets 8-10 reps each
Wide Grip Seated Cable Rows: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Close Grip Pull Downs super set w/Cable Pullovers: 3 Sets 10-12 reps each on both exercises
Legs: (Workout A)
*Begin every workout with 3 sets of high rep leg extensions, 20 reps each per set
Squats: 3 Working Sets 8-15 reps each
Hack Squats: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Walking Lunges: 3 Sets each set consist of 10-15 reps per leg
Standing Leg Curls: 2 Sets 12-15 reps
Seated Leg Curls: 2 Sets 12-15 reps
*Every other workout, superset two of the exercises.
Standing Calf Raise: 2 Sets 15 reps each
Donkey Calf Raise: 2 Sets 15 reps each
Legs: (Workout B)
*Begin every workout with 3 sets of high rep leg extensions, 20 reps per set
Front Squats: 3 Working Sets 10-15 reps each
Leg Press: 3 Working Sets 15-20 reps each
Staggered Squats: 3 Sets 10 reps w/each leg
Lying Leg Curls: 2 Sets 12-15 reps each
Stiff Leg Dead Lifts: 2 Sets 12-15 reps each
Standing Single Leg Calf Raise: 2 Sets 12-15 reps each
Shoulders & Traps: (Workout A)
*Begin Each Workout with 2 Sets of high rep DB lateral Raise or machine equivalent, 20 reps each
Dumbbell Military Press: 3 Working Sets 8-15 reps each
Standing Lateral Raise: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Bent-Over Lateral Raise: 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Close Grip Upright Rows: 2 Sets 10-12 reps
Barbell Shrugs: 2 Working Sets 10-15 reps each
*Every other workout, start with Traps
Shoulders & Traps: (Workout B)
Standing Single Arm Lateral Raise: 3 Sets 8-12 reps each arm
Upright Reverse Cable Cross-Over: 3 Sets 10-15 reps
Hammer Strength Military Press or Machine Equivalent: 3 Sets 10-15 reps, 1 set triple drop set to failure on each
Cable Shrugs super-set w/Front Raises: 12-15 reps for Cables, 10 reps on Raises Raises can be performed with a BB or DBs
Arms: (Workout A)
*Every Workout, start with 2 sets of high reps of the arm exercise of your choice, depending on if you start with Bis or Tris. Alternate between
starting with Bis and Tris every week.
Preacher Curls: 3 Working Sets 8-12 reps each
Wide Grip Barbell Curls (EZ Bar or Cambered): 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Cable Curls: 2 Sets 12-15 reps each
Incline Skull Crushers/French Press: 3 Working Sets 10-12 reps each
Close Grip Bench: 3 Sets 8-12 reps each
V-Bar Cable Press Down: 2 Sets 12-15 reps each
Arms: (Workout B)
Barbell Hammer Curls: 3 Sets 12-15 reps each
Dumbbell Curls: 2 Sets both arms at the same time, triple drop sets to failure on both sets
High Cable Concentration Curls: 2 Sets 15-20 reps each
Weighted Dips (seated or upright): 3 Sets 10-15 reps each
Smith Machine Extensions super set w/Bodyweight Bench Dips: 3 Sets 10-12 Reps each on Smith Machine, 15-20 reps on dips
*Train your abs 3 days per week in the similar manner in which you did in the beginning routine. Pick 3 exercises from the 3 categories, but start
experimenting with ways to make the exercises harder to add additional stimulation.
***KEEP YOUR AB TRAINGING GOING. Many people will neglect their abs thinking its not important unless they are dieting and leaning out for
competition. However, strong abdominal muscles greatly aid in stabilizing the body during other exercises. You need a strong midsection if you expect
to go up in weight in lifts such as dead lifts, squats, military press, etc.
-Some of the lifts that were listed in the beginners routine are not listed in this intermediate routine. This does not mean those lifts that were
left out of the intermediate routine no longer have their place in your training. In fact, most all of the lifts that are discussed in all of the
routines regardless of the level will always have a place.
-What was done here was to show you how to incorporate new exercises into your routine that were not included in the beginners routine. You will still
need to use some of the very exercise in the beginners routine in this one. Learn to mix and match, but follow the formula here now that youve
-Take for example Plain good old-fashioned flat bench skull crushers, they are not listed in the intermediate routine, other triceps exercises made
their way into this sample outline. Remember, THIS IS A SAMPLE! You will still need to incorporate skull crushers into your routine; the same can be
said for all exercises.
***The Sample Routines A & B Sections:
*These routines are just that, Samples they are not to say this is the only way you can pair your exercises for a body part. For instance, on chest
day, Chest Workout B on the list above it has you doing your incline before you do flat presses; feel free to mix this up. Its important to mix things
up to keep the body guessing, the body has a tendency to try its best to remain the same and to stay in a state of homeostasis. Lets answer some
questions you might have
Q: Should you follow the routines just as they are laid out?
A: When you first begin the intermediate level, absolutely, follow the above routine the exact way it is laid out. The first week you begin training,
follow workout A for each body part, the next week follow workout B and then repeat so on and so on. As you become accustomed to the training, begin to
mix up the order of the exercises.
Q: Should I keep the reps and sets just like they are in laid out in the routine or should I play around with this as well?
A: When you first begin the intermediate level, absolutely, follow the above routine the exact way it is laid out. As you begin to progress, feel free
to play with the rep range slightly. Keep in mind, you are lifting for your physique not simply for strength alone, your reps should always fall in the
10-15 range on each set predominantly. The occasional burn out set of 20+ reps is a great way to mix things up, and if you want to do an occasional set
of 3-4, go for it, but in general keep the sets in the suggested range. Try to keep your calf exercise in the 15 rep range throughout. Calves respond
more effectively to higher rep sets such as this.
Q: Most of the exercises have only 3 sets in them, some only 2, is this enough?
A: When you begin your workout, lets use chest as an example, say you begin with Incline Barbell Press. You will need to warm up and do a few sets
while progressively increasing the weight with each one. When it comes to the 3 sets listed in the outline, these represent Working Sets the sets
where you are pushing to the limit. After youve completed this first exercise, when you go to the next there is no reason to go through the same warm
up again. You should not have to do a few sets of the next exercise, you should go right into the working sets; your body is already warmed up.
-As with everything in life, there are exceptions, and there are slight ones here. When you are doing legs, if you do not do squats first you may still
need to do a set or two to sort of get in the groove, but do not waste a lot of energy on a bunch of warm up sets, you should already be warm. The same
can be said with dead lifts, and some of the pressing movements.
Q: What if I feel like doing more sets, should I?
A: In general, no, you should be able to get all the work done in the prescribed amount of sets listed in this routine. Now sometimes to mix things up,
sure throw an extra set or two in there, it will be good stimulation for the muscle. But in general, if you follow the guided outlines rules and
recommendations, and if you follow them perfectly, you will make perfect gains and get the most out of your training.
Q: What about super-sets, drop-sets and other high intensity methods, they are not listed that frequently; shouldnt there be more of this?
A: Doing more then is listed at times will be fine. What the above routine has done is to show you how to incorporate these types of things. There is
no need to super-set or drop set every exercise or every set, there isnt even a need to use one of these techniques every single time. You should
incorporate them regularly but use sound judgment. Nothing will ever replace the good old-fashioned basics.
When you train a certain body part, this does not mean you are burning fat from the area being worked. Many people believe that if they do sit-ups or
crunches they will in fact shrink their stomach; nothing could be further from the truth. When you exercise, the energy pulled from fat burns stored
body fat from the entire body; it starts from the last place the fat was stored. When you work a certain body part, you do in fact improve the shape
and strength of that body part, but you do not specifically remove fat from that area. Your goal is to shrink fat cells throughout the entire body,
which is exactly what youre doing when you exercise and eat right.
*Muscle to FatFat to Muscle:
Many believe that when they stop training that the new muscle they have acquired will turn into fat; the opposite is sometimes said about fat. Some
believe that when they begin training that the fat they now have will turn into muscle. Muscle tissue is not the same as fat tissue. Why does this myth
exist? This is because of catabolism of muscle fibers for the use of energy, which in many cases will cause excess glucose to be stored as fat. What
you end up having is muscle atrophy and increased fatty tissue in the same body part giving the appearance that muscle has turned into fat.
*Reshaping the Muscle:
Unfortunately you cannot reshape your muscles. The shape of your muscles is determined at birth. Your goal is to add all you can to the look of your
muscle, to enthusiastically create a better appeal of the muscles in your body. By increasing the size and by removing excess body fat around the
muscles, it will give them the appearance of better looking muscles.
***Sample Weekly Splits***
Shoulders & Traps
Chest & Tris
***How Long to Stay on Intermediate Routine***
*Everyone responds differently and it is impossible to say exactly how someone will respond. Your first priority will be to look at your rate of growth. If
youre not progressing any more, first and foremost look at your diet. If you are following the steroid.com intermediate level diet, then use some of the
techniques in there to rev up your diet. At this point, after trying these techniques, if youre still not progressing like you should be, seriously
examine your training. Are you following a routine that has you doing the exact same exercises in the exact same order every week? If so, start mixing it
up, start doing the exercise that you typically do first last, start using the intensity increasing techniques more often; shock your body in as many ways
-At this stage you are going to need to start imploring different styles of training to compliment what youre already doing. The steroid.com outline
should always be your base, but feel free to experiment with other training methods to compliment this one.
-If you are to follow the steroid.com training outline, as some point growth and progress will slow down; this will be true with any training method you
follow. At this point you may very well need to consider switching to an alternate routine for several weeks. After you have made this switch, after you
have trained with your alternate routine for a set amount of time, then it will be time to return to this outline.
-Lifting styles such as DC, YT3, HIT, etc. are excellent choices to give your body a needed change and boost in training.
-Once you have completed a set time period through one of these alternate training methods, when you do return to the steroid.com training outline, you
will find that your progress will increase yet again.
-At this point, after the above things have been checked off the list, if gains have stopped it will be time to move to the advanced level training
outline. Of those that do move to the advance level training outline, more of you then not will never move to the advanced level diet, not without getting
fat. (See explanation in the diet outlines). Dont let this bother you, the diets do not correlate themselves 100% to the training outlines; this stuff is
not an exact science since everyones body is different then the next.
-The amount of size and strength you should gain before you advance to the advanced level is going to be an individual thing; increasing endurance for
strict hard exercise is the main key.
*Soreness is not the end all to be all factor when it comes to actual progress or in determining if your training session went well.
-When you first begin this routine you are going to be sore, this is a given. You will be sorer then you have ever been or ever will be again; especially
after the first few sessions of squats and dead lifts. Dont let this concern you, it will hurt, it will be uncomfortable, but you need to work through it.
If you are sore the next day after your leg workout, this does not mean you take the next scheduled lifting day off; you work through it. There will be
times when it is difficult to sit or walk normally, there will be times when lifting your arms up is a difficult task; WORK THROUGH IT! As you continue to
work, the soreness will lessen and become more manageable.
-Many people enjoy a manageable level of soreness after they workout; it gives them a feeling of satisfaction that their workout session was a job well
done. But it is not the soreness itself that leads to a Good Workout. The soreness was caused in part by the strain on the muscles and in part by the
buildup of lactic acid around the muscles being worked. For some this will be worse than others. Proper diet and proper rest will alleviate soreness to a
great extent, as will cardio. (See Cardio Section)
-Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS): you have trained a particular muscle group, yet soreness does not show itself until an undetermined amount of time
has passed. For example, you trained legs, after youre done training you are tired and fatigued, perhaps sore in a strained sort of way, yet actual
Soreness is absent. The next morning when you wake up, perhaps even twenty hours later, the intense soreness rears its head. There can be even another
level of DOMS that is not uncommon; you have trained a particular body part and the extreme soreness shows itself the next day. 48 hours later, the
soreness is intensified yet again taking it to its peak level. When this occurs it may take a few days before the soreness subsides completely. DO NOT
WORRY, this is normal and all part of the new way of life you have undertaken.
***Taking a Break***
*After approximately 12-16weeks of training, it is strongly recommended that you take some time off from your weight training. At this point you will not
want to touch a weight for a solid week. This will allow your body some much needed rest, and it will let your muscles heal and prepare you even that much
more for the training to come. At this point some of you will find that you will be ready for the intermediate level of training. You will have mastered
all of the basics in this outline. Most of you, however, will not be ready and will still require some time. How much time as said before is impossible to
determine. Use your own sound judgment.
Q: Why take a break, shouldnt I train more and more? Wont I lose my gains, wont I hurt my progress?
A: Absolutely not, if anything you will help it tremendously
Q: Should I do nothing when I take my break?
A: Remain active, its recommended that you do something most days; it is simply good for your health. Take a walk or go play some sort of pickup game
with your friends, anything to simply get some exercise
Q: What if I reach the 12-16wk mark and dont feel like taking a break, what if I am really in the groove and making great progress, should I still
take a break?
A: There is nothing magical per say about the 12-16wk mark. If you are hitting it hard and really making progress, sure, go ahead and keep going for
another week or two, but you should really force yourself to break at some point during or slightly after that time frame. Your gains will be greater
and your body will thank you.
*Cardio is an absolute essential for anyone looking to build a great physique. It is beneficial for your cardiovascular system, it keeps your metabolism
revved up, and it helps regulate many of the hormones in your body that are essential for a proper functioning body to build an awesome physique.
*There are several things to consider when it comes to your cardio. Right now you are not dieting for a contest, you are not trying to get down to an
extremely low body fat percentage, but cardio and keeping your metabolism burning quickly is important.
-If you are carrying a large amount of body fat, then it is recommended that you do a pretty good bit of cardio from the get go. At this point you should
be following a weight loss style diet with your training and you should be doing cardio most every day. Recommended a minimum of 30 minutes every day of
some type of cardio, 45 minutes a day will probably be more like it.
-If you are in relatively good shape, your body fat is at a manageable level and you are not concerned at this time with losing any body fat, 30 minutes of
cardio around 4-5 days a week is perfect.
-If you are a hard gainer, you have very low body fat and struggle with gaining muscle, you still need to do a little cardio. If nothing else consider the
health benefits. On top of this, keep in mind that regular cardiovascular training enhances hormone production in the body, therefore increasing your
ability to build lean muscle tissue. 3-4 sessions per week at 20 minutes per session is perfect for you.
*The type of cardio or how hard you do your cardio is important. You should keep your heart rate in the fat burning zone. There is no need to sprint or
get your heart rate flying; this will put you at risk at burning precious hard earned muscle tissue. Keep it in the fat burning zone; your heart rate
should be at 110-130 beats per minute.
*Final cardio note: Regular post weight training cardio is one of the best ways to ensure youre not sorer then you need to be. Nothing flushes out the
lactic acid that builds up around your muscles during weight training and causes soreness like cardio does. If for no other reason then this, cardio
should be executed regularly.
***Stretching & Warming UP***
*Both are important before any training session. Before you hit the weights it is not a bad idea to do 5-10 minutes of light cardio to get your blood
flowing and get into the right state of mind. Is it necessary? No, but its not a bad idea.
*When it comes to stretching itself, before each workout stretch the muscles that you will be training. However, you do not and should not do any extreme
stretching before lifting. This can be damaging to your muscles before you lift. Keep the intense stretching for after you lift. Is post workout stretching
necessary? To an extent absolutely! It will help flush lactic acid away from the muscles making soreness more manageable. It will also help prevent injury
*There is an ongoing argument among trainers, lifters and weight lifting experts as to which if any accessories are acceptable. Among pure strength
athletes these can be a hindrance, but you are here to build a perfect physique.
If you can get by without using one then by all means go for it. If you are feeling pressure on your lower back in some exercises then please use a
belt. If you are feeling pressure during presses then you are twisting your back and should stop immediately and perfect your form. If you feel you
need a belt while doing curls, then you are swinging your back and hips, stop lower the weight and perfect your form.
-Belts are acceptable for:
*We can make an exception with belts when the individual becomes more advanced in his training. At this time the individual should have mastered his
form and can choose to use a belt during any exercise for any body part if he so chooses.
Some will argue that using lifting straps will take away from forearm development and that they should never be used. This is simply an overblown myth.
When training your back your forearms will come into play on almost every exercise, on everyone of these exercises no matter how strong your forearms
are, they will tire out before your back does. Your back will always be stronger then your forearms no matter how strong your forearms become. For this
reason it is strongly recommended that you use lifting straps while training back and while performing shrugs in some instances. Worry about your
forearm strength and development when youre training arms.
These items have their place in a training routine when it comes to legs. However, their use should be limited. As a beginner you were strongly urged
not to use these items, as a more advanced lifter this may be the time for some of you to begin using them. So when is it time?
-You have built up a massive amount of strength in your legs.
-You have weak knees when it comes to the heavy weight you now need to push doing squats and lunges.
-Squats and lunges will be the only two acceptable places where you are to use knee wraps.
-At steroid.com, we can say with almost all certainty that if 225lbs is considered heavy for you on squats, then there is no reason for you to use knee
-You should be pushing 400lbs+ if you are going to consider using wraps. This doesnt mean you have to, but lets make 400lbs the benchmark.
***Notes on Exercises***
With the bar across your back, you should squat down similar to if you were sitting down in a chair. Your feet should be shoulder width to slightly
less than shoulder width apart. Spreading your feet further apart will give you more power, but will take away from the stimulation you are trying to
-The bar should not be up high on your neck, rather it should be resting on your lower traps. Having the bar too high can force your head down. Your head
should remain up the entire time to relieve stress on the spine.
-You should remain upright through the entire movement. However, this means upright in a natural position; you do not need to be at a 90degree angle. Your
glutes should be going back and down as you perform the movement.
-The movement itself, your knees should not go out over your toes. Feet remain flat; your heels never come up. Your thighs should be parallel to the ground
at the bottom portion of the exercise. Going below parallel is great, if you can squat glutes to calves then do so, but not at the expense of solid form in
every other aspect. However, Parallel is a MUST!
Use either a bar across your back or hold a pair of dumbbells in your hands. If your grip begins to give out before your legs do and youre using
dumbbells, switch to a barbell.
-Lunge forward one leg at a time. For perfect form throughout, take one step forward and bring the other leg up to meet the lunging leg and stop then
repeat with the other leg forward. Once you perfect your form, you may begin taking continuous strides without the stopping point. This is not a
required necessity, if your form gets sloppy with this method, go back to one leg at a time then stop and repeat.
-As you lunge, the back leg should come within inches of touching the ground. As you come forward with the back leg, push off hard with your back foot
to intensify the stimulation in your glutes and hamstrings.
Youre gym should have a machine called a Hack Squat this is the one youll use. The move can also be performed holding a barbell behind your back
and squatting, but for our purposes we will use the Hack Squat machine press. There are two types of hack machines/benches:
Stand in the machine lying back on the pad with the shoulder pads directly over your shoulders. With your feet slightly less the shoulder width apart
on the platform simply squat down.
Sit in the seat that has a V shaped bend, with your lower back directly above the crease/split. With your feet slightly less the shoulder width apart
on the platform simply squat down.
-DO NOT let your back come up off the seat or off the back pad. This can lead to severe stress on the spine
-DO NOT slouch your body; remain fully up right with your torso
-Keep your toes pointed slightly out, slightly
Lying at a 45 degree angle, place your feet slightly less then shoulder width apart. Toes should be pointing slightly, very slightly out. Feet should
be placed directly in line with the center of your body, not above and not below that line.
-Keep your back flat and do not let your glutes come up from the seat.
-Take your legs all the way down in a controlled manner; do not bounce on the safety stops at the bottomcontrol, control.
-Go down as far as possible, but if your lower back and glutes come up, youve gone too far and can cause unwarranted stress to your lower back
-Do not lock your knees at the top
*Standing Leg Curls:
For these you will use one leg at a time. These can be performed on a standing leg curl machine, but several gyms do not have these. If your gym does
not, you can easily use a lying hamstring curl machine. Standing upright, place the pad directly against the back of your calf and simply curl your leg
-DO NOT jerk or bounce the weight
-Squeeze hard at the top
*Standing Calf Raise:
Standing in a calf raise machine, place the pads on top of your shoulders. Your feet should be placed with your heels hanging off the foot platform.
Press up and all the way back down, very simple
-DO NOT lock your knees, keep them relaxed
-DO NOT bounce
-Use full range of motion, do not forgo going all the way down.
-Squeeze at the top
*Donkey Calf Raise:
Two ways to be performed.
1. Place your lower back directly under the pad of the machine, and use the same motion as you would for a standing calf raise.
2. The other type of machine has a seat very similar to the seated Hack Squat machine, almost identical. Same motion as the other version.
Similar to regular squats, the difference here is the bar is held in front rather then on your back. This will put more stress on the quads, less on
the hamstrings and give more attention to your outer sweep. Cross your arms and let the bar rest on the upper part of your chest and bottom/front part
of your shoulders and squat.
-You should remain upright through the entire movement. However, this means upright in a natural position; you do not need to be at a 90degree angle. Your
glutes should be going back and down as you make the movement.
To use any decent amount of weight you will need to use a Smith Machine for this. Step under the bar just as you would to do regular barbell squats.
Placing one foot out in front of you and the other stretched out behind you and up on your toe. Lower the weight down. The movement should be almost
identical to a lunge, but you will be able to use a far greater amount of weight with these then with lunges. Keep in mind, these do not replace
lunges, they offer a variation on stimulation.
-Remain perfectly upright throughout
-DO NOT let the bending leg come out over your toe
*Lying Leg Curls:
Lying on a regular leg curl bench.
-Keep your head down, to relieve tension on the spine
-DO NOT swing the weight
-Contract at the top
*Standing Single Leg Calf Raise:
These will not seem like much, but if performed correctly they will burn your calves to pieces. Find a step to use, simply stand with one leg on the
step, the other wrapped around the back of your working ankle. Raise up and down.
-Full range of motion
*Incline Bench Press:
With the bar or dumbbells, the downward portion of the movement should hit in line with the upper portion of your chest, just below your neck line for
-The downward portion of the exercise, your elbows should be at a little less than a 90 degree angle perpendicular to your body or slightly lower. If you
have longer arms, there is no need to go down to where your elbows begin to point and drift behind your body. This will cause damage to your shoulders.
-Your butt should remain flat on the bench the entire time, with your feet flat on the floor. Do not flail your legs, do not twist and contort your body to
get the weight up. If you cant do this, then lower the weight because it is too heavy. Control is the key!
*Flat Bench Press:
With the bar or dumbbells, the downward portion of the movement should hit somewhere in the mid to upper chest region. If the bar is hitting you below
the chest you are doing the movement incorrectly.
-Your elbows should remain perpendicular to your body; a slight inward turn is acceptable if this feels more natural, but only slightly. DO NOT allow your
elbows to turn in towards your chest dramatically; this will put the stress on your triceps and shoulders and is one of the biggest leading causes to
injury on the bench press.
- Your butt should remain flat on the bench the entire time, with your feet flat on the floor. Do not flail your legs, do not twist and contort your body
to get the weight up. If you cant do this, then lower the weight because it is too heavy. Control is the key!
*Incline Dumbbell Flys:
This is the same movement as a regular dumbbell fly performed on a flat bench; all that has changed is the angle. The new angle will provide greater
stimulation to your upper chest, and many find that these cause less stress to the shoulders then traditional flat bench dumbbell flys.
-Lying on an incline bench, keep both feet on the floor and hold the dumbbells directly above your head, palms facing in.
-Lower the dumbbells in a circular motion towards the floor
-DO NOT lower them to the point where your shoulders start pointing behind the bench, this is too low
-Pull the dumbbells back to the top and squeeze the pecs hard
*Wide Grip Chest Press (Hammer Strength or Equivalent):
Some gyms do not carry the Hammer Strength brand, but most gyms these days have a decent line of the Hammer Press machines. This is one of the more
common ones and it will say Hammer Wide Chest Press. It has a slight incline on the seat and the handles are placed very far from each other. As you
press they come in together and meet at the top as they go up.
-Keeping your shoulders back and head up, press outward and upward
-DO NOT let the weight bounce at the bottom
-Squeeze hard at the top of the movement
*Wide Grip Pull-Ups:
Wide Grip means just that, WIDE GRIP! Slightly beyond shoulder width is as close as you should ever get to your body. As you get stronger, widen your
grip even further out
-As you grip the bar, use a thumb less grip to take pressure off the forearms and keep it on the back.
-Use your arms and hands as hooks; contract your back muscles to pull you up. If you feel added stress on your shoulders, examine your movement; you may be
pulling with your shoulders and not your back. This is a very common mistake and easy to do.
-Take the movement all the way to the top and all the way back down to the very bottom for a full stretch. The top part of the movement should have your
chin at the top of the bar.
-If you cannot do bodyweight pull-ups, use an assisted machine until you master the exercise and are ready for full-fledged pull-ups. If your gym does not
have an assisted machine, use the lat pull down on the cables; most gyms do have an assisted machine.
There are two options to perform this exercise. First, some gyms have a t-bar row bench, it will have a pad you lean over on with your chest, and two
handles that you reach down and grab. You simply pull the weight up to the bottom of the pad.
The other option, and this is the steroid.com favored method, do it the way it was originally intended to be done. Place a bar in a floor positioned
t-bar holder or simply place a barbell in the corner of a wall. Put your weight on the opposite end of the bar and using a D-handle grab the bar and
pull straight up towards your chest. You should remain bent at the hips at a 90 degree to slightly less the entire time, similar to how you would be
bent performing barbell rows.
-DO NOT bend at the waste
-Keep your head up
-Contract your lats hard at the top
-DO NOT bounce the weight off the floor
*Seated Cable Rows:
On a cable station sit with your feet up on the foot support mounts, grab a D-bar or similar triangular bar that you have attached and pull the cable
straight into your stomach.
-DO NOT jerk the weight back to where you are leaning backwards at the end of the movement.
-After youve pulled the weight back and are preparing to lower it back down, let it stretch your arms and lats forward to get a good stretch. This is sort
of a touchy thing, it can be easy to let yourself stretch forward and then use the momentum to thrust yourself backwards which will take your back out of
the exercise in the incorrect way.
*Rack Dead Lifts:
Very similar to dead lifts, the difference here is the starting point. With Rack Dead Lifts, you will start with the bar right below your knees; other
then that, the movement is exactly the same.
Why Deads off a rack? You should be much stronger by now; you are also not training purely for strength but for a well-defined and developed physique.
With regular dead lifts from the floor it is very easy to cause unwanted distension in the stomach and over developed obliques, which will make your
waste appear wider, this is the last thing you want. Taking the starting point to slightly below the knees will greatly aid in preventing these things
Inside a power rack place the safety stops directly below the knees. Grab the bar with a slightly wider then shoulder width grip, both hands with an
overhand grip, palms facing down. Pull straight up, contract your entire back and lower the weight back to the safety stopsrepeat.
-DO NOT bend over at the waste letting your back round over. Remain as upright as you can naturally..
-Make sure you go all the way down with each rep
*Wide Grip T-Bar (neutral bar) Pull Downs:
On the same cable station as you would do regular lat pull-downs, attach a t-bar or neutral bar to the top. Your grip on this will be very wide, palms
facing in. Pull the weight directly down towards your chest and contract.
-DO NOT let yourself lean way back. A slight lean is acceptable but only slight.
-DO NOT let your arms bend forward, keep them straight and pointed directly up throughout
-Picture yourself performing a back and double biceps pose.
*Reverse Grip Barbell Rows:
The exact same movement as regular barbell rows, only this time you are gripping the bar with your palms facing up. The difference here is it will
allow you to pull your elbows back slightly further.
-Pull the bar straight up, keeping it towards your body the entire time. As you pull up, your elbows should be pointed straight back. Contract hard at the
top and repeat.
-At the top portion of the movement, the bar should hit in between the hips and your bellybutton, not below and not higher.
*Wide Grip Seated Cable Rows:
Everything that was said about regular seated cable rows is true here. The difference is you will be holding a wide bar, the bar you use for t-bar pull
downs is best. This simply creates a different stimulation on your back.
*Close Grip Pull Downs:
Everything that was said about the wide grip t-bar pull-downs can be said here, with the exception of the back and double bicep pose. Your hands will
be close together by way of attaching and grabbing a D-bar or triangular handle and pulling straight down to your chest.
-DO NOT let yourself lean way back. A slight lean is acceptable but only slight.
Attach a two handed rope to a cable machine and bend to an approximate 60-70 degree angle at the hips with your butt back. Keeping your arms straight,
pull the rope down into your lower body remaining in the bent position the entire time. Let the rope move back up to the top position stretching your
lats out heavily. The top portion of the movement is the most important factor.
-DO NOT let your triceps take over. If youre feeling a lot of tension in your triceps youre more than likely using too much weight.
-Keep your head in a downward, neutral position.
-Make sure you let the rope go all the way up to where your hands are in line with your head to slightly behind it.
Standing directly in front of a barbell, grasp the bar with a slightly wider grip then shoulder width.
-Keep your head down or straightforward throughout. DO NOT look up
-Pull straight up with your traps, NOT with your arms. Your arms are simply being used as hooks.
-DO NOT roll your shoulders back at the top. Straight up and then straight down, thats it
*Dumbbell Military Press:
Use a bench with a back support and press the dumbbells directly above your head. You can use a 90 degree bench. Some may alternatively find using an
incline bench at a 10 degree angle to be more comfortable and natural.
-Place the dumbbells on your thighs and kick them up one at a time to where youll be holding the dumbbells directly above your shoulders perpendicular to
your body. The dumbbells should be pointed outward, not inward
-Press directly up but DO NOT lock out your elbows at the top
-Lower the dumbbells back down to the point to where your elbows are at a slightly lower then 90 degree angle. It should be the same point and line as a
barbell military press
*Standing Lateral Raise:
Exact same as the seated version, however, this will allow you to use more weight. If your form gets sloppy, go back to the seated version.
-Keep a slight bend in your elbows throughout
-At the top portion of the movement, the dumbbells should be pointed slightly down in front of you as if you were pouring out a pitcher of water.
-Control the movement all the way back down in order to keep tension on your side laterals muscles.
-DO NOT raise the dumbbells up above your head. This causes undue stress to your traps, and in short will make you look like you dont know what youre
-If you find difficulty performing this move correctly, use one arm at a time until you master the move.
*Bent-Over Single Alternating Lateral Raise
The exact same as the Bent-Over Lateral Raise already discussed, simply performing the move one arm at a time. You will notice a better contraction.
Sit on the end of a bench and bend over to the point where you are lying on the top of your thighs. Let the dumbbells hang down to your side beside
your legs behind your feet.
-Using the same motion as a lateral raise, raise one dumbbell at a time straight up
-Keep a slight bend in your elbows
-Keep your head down
-Raise the dumbbells up until they are slightly higher then perpendicular to your chest. If your shoulder blades pull close together, you have gone back
too far and have taken the stress off your rear delts.
*Close Grip Upright Rows:
Same as wide grip upright rows only now your hands are 6 apart putting the stress on your traps and taking it off your shoulders. Everything else is
-Pull the bar straight up keeping it right in front of your body throughout.
-As you pull upwards, your elbows should be working their way upwards to where they are pointing towards the ceiling at the top.
-At the top of the movement the bar should be above your chest, it should never reach your head.
*Standing Single Arm Lateral Raise:
Almost identical to
Standing Lateral Raise, the difference here is you will grasp on to some support and lean outwards. Everything else is the same.
-Control the movement all the way back down in order to keep tension on your side laterals muscles
-You have to do these one arm at a time
*Upright Reverse Cable Cross-Over:
Place the cables using D-handles at the position to where they are slightly higher then your head. Grab the left cable with your right hand and the
right cable with your left; your hands should be crossed. Pull them straight back towards your back and squeeze
-Remain perfectly erect throughout
-Pull all the way back and squeeze hard
*Hammer Strength Military Press or Machine Equivalent:
This will be the same motion as any military press. The difference here is on this machine you will lean slightly back. Everything else is the same
except for the fact that you should be able to use a pretty decent amount of weight.
-Full range of motion but not to the point where your triceps are doing the brunt of the work.
Grabbing a pair of D-Handles, place the cables all the way to the bottom position, step forward and shrug.
-You will need to create a slight lean forward
-Keep your head down or neutral throughout
-DO NOT roll your shoulders at the top
-DO NOT jerk your body
-Control the weight back down
*Behind the Back Barbell Shrugs:
Grab a barbell with an underhand grip, palms facing down with the bar behind your back; simply shrug up
-Keep your head down throughout
-The bar will hit the bottom of your glutes, its supposed to
Close Grip Bench Press:
Lying on a flat bench just as you would to do flat bench press when working chest, grab the barbell with your hands approximately 6 apart. Lower the
bar down to your mid chest and explode up.
-Keep your elbows tucked in on this exercise, the exact opposite as you would do on flat bench press when working chest.
-Squeeze the triceps hard at the top portion of the exercise
*Behind the Neck Dumbbell Press:
Sitting on an upright bench you will hold a dumbbell with both hands behind your head; the dumbbell should be held vertically. Lower the dumbbell
straight down until your elbows are at a 90 degree angle or slightly lower and press back up squeezing at the top.
-DO NOT short change yourself on the range of motion
-DO NOT let your shoulders roll forward
*Weighted Dips (seated):
Some gyms have a bench for this; it will be easy to spot. Most gyms do not have this piece of equipment; in this case you will need to flat benches.
Sit perpendicular on one bench with your feet up on another bench. Hold yourself up by your hands on one bench and slowly lower and raise your body up
and down, squeezing at the top. You will have weight plates sitting in your lap.
-You will need someone to place the weight in your lap
-At the bottom of the exercise your elbows should be at 90 degree angles or slightly more
-Your hands should be just past shoulder width
*Incline French Press/Skull Crushers:
The exact same movement as standard French Press/Skull Crusher except you are lying on an incline bench and will need to let the bar go behind your
head slightly. Everything else is the same.
-Bend your arms all the way down to where your elbows are slightly below a 90 degree bend
-Explode up and squeeze your triceps hard at the top
-Do not let your elbows flair out
*Bodyweight Bench Dips:
Same as the weighted bench dips, simply using your body weight. Everything else is the same. Sit perpendicular on one bench with your feet up on
another bench. Hold yourself up by your hands on one bench and slowly lower and raise your body up and down, squeezing at the top.
*V-Bar Cable Press Down:
Grip a V-Bar cable attachment and simply press down using your triceps. One of the simplest exercises you will ever do, but there are slight mishaps
that can mess it up.
-Stand directly in front of the cable station; do not take several steps back to make it easier
-Use full range of motion; at the top portion your elbows should be at 90 degrees directly beside your body
-DO NOT bounce the weight
Holding a Barbell curl the bar straight up but in doing so, keep the bar tucked in tight by holding your arms in tight and back. You should squeeze in
the same manner as a dumbbell hammer curl, but in this case with the bar the top of the movement should only go up about 2/3 as high as a standard
-As you squeeze up, focus more on squeezing the biceps where they tie in with your forearms
-As with all curling motions, DO NOT cheat by rolling your shoulders or using your shoulders at all or your lower back
* Dumbbell Curls:
Standing upright, holding a dumbbell in each hand curl the dumbbells straight up. Start with the dumbbells to where your palms are facing in towards
your body, as you curl up twist the dumbbells to where your palms are facing up at the top of the movement and contraction.
- As with all curling motions, DO NOT cheat by rolling your shoulders or using shoulders at all or your lower back.
The exact same motion as with all curls, only using a preacher bench where your arms are hanging directly over the top. It is recommended that you use
an EZ-bar/Cambered bar to relive tension on the wrist. Everything else that is said about curls is true here.
-DO NOT let your butt come up off the seat for any reason
-Experiment with wide and narrow grips. Wide will allow you to use more weight, but narrow will put stimulation on your bis in a whole new way. Use both
grips alternating form workout to workout
-DO NOT roll your shoulders or bring your shoulders into the movement in any way. If your shoulders come into play, chances are you are using too much
-DO NOT cheat yourself and not come all the way back down
*Wide Grip Barbell Curls (EZ Bar or Cambered):
Exact same as the standing barbell curl, just using a different bar to create a different stimulating effect; everything else is the same.
Standing upright, grip a barbell at approximately shoulder width. In a curling motion, raise the bar all the way up towards the chest and squeeze.
Proceed to lower the bar all the way down in a controlled manner.
-DO NOT cheat yourself and not come all the way back down.
-Do NOT use your back in any shape form or fashion. If you find you are heaving your body and using your lower back, lower the weight. This is a very
common mistake and is an ego factor that causes many lifters to seriously short change themselves, not to mention threaten serious injury to your lower
Exact same motion as a barbell curl. Grab a straight bar cable attachment and curl. This exercise allows for an equal amount of tension to be on the
muscle throughout. You should be facing the weight stack, not reversed with the cable between your legs as you may see people do. Everything else is
In a curling motion, raise the bar all the way up towards the chest and squeeze. Proceed to lower the bar all the way down in a controlled manner.
*High Cable Concentration Curls:
Grabbing two D-handles, raise the cables all the way to the position that has them slightly higher then your head. Curl the handles in towards the back
of your ears and squeeze.
-Picture yourself doing a front double bicep pose and at the top of the pose you squeeze in even further.
-DO NOT let the handles come in front of you at the top portion of the movement; this puts the stress on your shoulders
-Remain fully erect throughout