- Free weights or machines?
- What are the most important exercises?
- How many days a week should I train?
- How long should my workouts last?
- What’s the best 3 day split? 4 day split? 5 day split?
- Should cardio only be done precontest?
- What is the best rep range for bodybuilding?
- What exercises will get me ripped?
- What exercises will get me huge?
- Is a training partner necessary?
Free weights or machines?
The core of your weight training routine should be basic free weight exercises, but do not overlook the muscle building potential of machines. If approached with the proper focus, good form and range of motion and using challenging weights, every apparatus in the gym can be utilized to your advantage.
What are the most important exercises?
Your exercise regimen should be built around powerlifting’s classic “big three”, the bench, squat and deadlift. On top of that one should regularly employ pull-ups, rows and overhead presses. Arm movements, lateral raises, lunges, core work and machine isolation exercises should round out your routine. Overlook nothing, but make the hardest exercises your top priority.
How many days a week should I train?
That all depends on individual factors like recovery ability, lifestyle, level of experience, etc. A basic mass routine could be done with three days of hard and heavy training with 4 days a week to recover and grow. Most hard training bodybuilders train 4 to 5 days per week. Anything more than that, depending on the earlier mentioned factors, could easily lead to overtraining.
How long should my workouts last?
Efficiency should always be a goal--to get the most out of the least amount of time. A standard bodybuilding workout should be able to be completed in an hour. Anything longer than 90 minutes is likely overkill. Save the marathon workouts for the marathon runners.
What’s the best 3 day split? 4 day split? 5 day split?
A good 3 day split would be a push/pull/legs routine. Such a split would divide your physique into chest/shoulders/triceps, quads/hams/calves and back/biceps. Ab work should be included on a maintenance level. A solid 4 day split would consist of back/bis, legs, chest/tris and give shoulders their own day. The 5 day split would allow each muscle group its own day but would minimize rest time to 2 days total. Determine what your schedule and recovery threshold will allow for and plan your split accordingly.
Should cardio only be done precontest?
Cardio training, while a potent weapon for fat loss utilized by precontest bodybuilders, can be beneficial for all athletes as it improves metabolism, stamina, appetite and overall cardiovascular health. Employing low to moderate intensity cardio for short durations (20-30 minutes) a few times a week is never a bad call.
What is the best rep range for bodybuilding?
In general you’ll be told the 8-12 rep range is best for hypertrophy. However, the human body adapts quickly to training stimulus, so the use of heavy low rep sets and higher rep burnout sets strategically can help you bust through a plateau.
What exercises will get me ripped?
While any increased physical activity (like weight training) can aid in burning body fat and be beneficial for general overall health, to get a lean, “ripped” physique, one must supplement their intense weight training with a strict diet and regular cardio sessions on a consistent basis for a prolonged period of time.
What exercises will get me huge?
Once again, “getting huge” is largely dependent on your diet and taking in a surplus of nutritious calories. However, getting as strong as you can and training consistently heavy with the free weight basics is the most time-tested training recipe for raw mass. Training the largest muscle groups (legs and back) with great intensity also tends to translate to overall body growth.
Is a training partner necessary?
It all depends on the individual. A good training partner can provide motivation and help you to push yourself beyond your normal capacities. That said some bodybuilders thrive in solitude, training as a lone wolf. Regardless in instances when you are pressing or squatting in a lower rep range, safety and good judgment dictate that you should always have a trusted and capable spotter on hand.