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  1. #1
    DontBurnMyFlag is offline Warming Up
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    Is a 3 day a week workout enough?

    A little background. Im 23, 6'0 160lbs and I have been in the same shape for 2 years. I graduated the police academy back in 2006 and Im a relatively fit guy. My body is toned and Im an average runner. But Ive been trying to put on muscle recently.

    Ive changed my routine and want to see if a 3 day a week workout is acceptable. Keep in mind Ill be eating alot, healthy of course, and doing 30 minutes of cardio each workout day.

    I used to do a full body workout MWF a week. It would take 2 hours and I was pretty much exhausted afterwards.

    So i decided to split it up.

    I do the basic chest/tris on Monday
    Back/bis on Wednesday
    Legs/shoulders on Friday.
    I mix ab work into each day.

    However, since Im relatively new at weight-lifting to gain muscle, it just seems like that isnt enough work.

    Is it enough if i work out one muscle group a week? I do 4-5 exercises for each group and I push to failure on each set.

    It is enough?

    any suggestions?

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  3. #2
    realworksuks is offline Epic Adventurer
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    If you are going to do a bodypart split IMO you should workout 4-5 times per week.

  4. #3
    LiveFromNY is offline Does NOT need to Deload !
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    i don't think it's a bad plan, but it's also not much of a plan.

  5. #4
    evan is offline Second Set
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    Doing a FBW 3 times a week can be exhausting, especially if you're not used to it. A modified FBW might be a better option. Have an A and a B workout and alternate. So, the first week you would do A, B, A on Mon, Wed, and Fri then next week would be B, A, B.

    Your A plan could be something like Squats, Bench, Rows and your B could be Deadlift, Pullups, Dips, and Shoulder Press.

  6. #5
    malkore is offline Deceptimod
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    there's no reason a full body workout should last 2 hours. I can get a good one done in 45 minutes...60 minutes if I toss in abs and some extra isolation (i often do abs on cardio days).

    if your goal is adding muscle I wouldn't be putting too much focus on cardio, and definitely wouldn't do weights and cardio on the same day.

  7. #6
    realworksuks is offline Epic Adventurer
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    Quote Originally Posted by evan View Post
    Doing a FBW 3 times a week can be exhausting, especially if you're not used to it. A modified FBW might be a better option. Have an A and a B workout and alternate. So, the first week you would do A, B, A on Mon, Wed, and Fri then next week would be B, A, B.

    Your A plan could be something like Squats, Bench, Rows and your B could be Deadlift, Pullups, Dips, and Shoulder Press.
    Meh, if you wanna gain muscle optimally IMO be prepared to work out 5 days per week.

  8. #7
    evan is offline Second Set
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    Quote Originally Posted by realworksuks View Post
    Meh, if you wanna gain muscle optimally IMO be prepared to work out 5 days per week.
    Are you talking about a body-part split? Its been a while since I've followed one, but I've made better progress with a 3 day a week FBW. I'm not saying that one is better than the other, but if you've only got 3 days a week to workout, a body-part split might not be the most effective. Also, I've become a fan of working each muscle group more than once a week.

    Best advice is to try both and which which works best for you. Only problem is that takes time.

  9. #8
    fit4life1976 is offline Third Set
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    Quote Originally Posted by DontBurnMyFlag View Post

    So i decided to split it up.

    I do the basic chest/tris on Monday
    Back/bis on Wednesday
    Legs/shoulders on Friday.
    I mix ab work into each day.


    However, since Im relatively new at weight-lifting to gain muscle, it just seems like that isnt enough work.

    Is it enough if i work out one muscle group a week? I do 4-5 exercises for each group and I push to failure on each set.

    It is enough?

    any suggestions?
    This is the back-to-basics hardcore program for bodybuilding my friend. Go for heavy weights, 8 reps the most, aiming for 4 reps with the biggest weight on your last set. It works, simple as that. Training a muscle group once a week gives plenty of time for recovery, you will start feeling the results within a month. Make sure that your calorie intake is good enough for optimal growth and you'll be fine.

  10. #9
    realworksuks is offline Epic Adventurer
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    Quote Originally Posted by evan View Post
    Are you talking about a body-part split? Its been a while since I've followed one, but I've made better progress with a 3 day a week FBW. I'm not saying that one is better than the other, but if you've only got 3 days a week to workout, a body-part split might not be the most effective. Also, I've become a fan of working each muscle group more than once a week.

    Best advice is to try both and which which works best for you. Only problem is that takes time.

    I wasn't necessarily suggesting a bodypart split at all. I just don't believe 3 days a week for working out is optimal... you could do a full body workout 5 times per week and IMO it would be much more effective than a FBW 3 times per week....

    Or an upper/lower split, etc.

  11. #10
    Trainer82 is offline In Orientation
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    Three times a week is enough!

    I have been working out a three day workout for years now. Every time I go to gym I workout my whole body and it takes only about 45 - 55 minutes. I use Hypertrophy-Specific Training ( HST ) program. Hypertrophy-Specific Nutrition™

    I really like the HST program, my workouts used to last up to 2 hours at one point and then I decided to try HST. Gain in weights is atleast the same as in other systems and programs but workout sessions do not consume that much time. It really seems to work so I recommend HST..

    If you are a true beginner at weighlifting I would recommend to get your basics first in to condition.
    Start with doing couple of weeks of 15 reps x 3 to get your base strenght in condition. Do with the maxium weights which you can do the 15 repetition sets. Then go for the 8-10 repetition sets. Gradually add weights and your muscles should be building up, as in the beginning muscle growth is fastest. After couple of months you can start to think about HST or some other program.

  12. #11
    DontBurnMyFlag is offline Warming Up
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    thanks for the advice guys.

    I cut my post short because i didnt want to bog anyone down with too much information or a long winded post.

    The workouts I posted seem simple, but i have every type of workout for muscle group already planned. I just didnt post it.

    I appreciate the advice.

    It just seems like it isnt enough workout lol. Ill give it some time and see how I feel.

  13. #12
    Samari is offline Warming Up
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    Hey what's up. This is great because this is my first post and I was wondering exactly the same thing pretty much. I work out three times a week. And I'm kind of just starting out. The last few times I wasn't really consistent working out and I wasn't really taking it seriously. But I'm 20, and starting to enter my prime so I'm really starting to take this whole thing seriously for a change. I've been trying to do a lot of research about my exercises and how to proceed with workouts. But I'm still a rookie to this thing when it comes to knowledge.

    So the whole idea for me is the same as the original poster. I want to gain weight. And be a big guy. I weigh about 180 right now, and I'm 5'11''. I'm trying to gain a lot of mass to make muscle. Then afterwards I want to be kind of cut. A'la Terrell Owens or something. Well...maybe not to that extent, but I want my body to look really nice. "Beach body". With more muscle.

    So I'm working out three times a week. Mostly because I'm new at this and because of work and school. Here's the basic stuff I've been doing. I usually go at night Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays and stay from 11:00pm to 12:30am:

    Tuesdays: 10 minute bike cardio, Chest, arms, ab workouts

    Thursdays: 10 minute bike cardio, all back workouts, ab workouts

    Sundays: Repeat of Tuesday

    Right so like someone else said I'm on track to do the schedule like A,B,A one week and then B,A,B the next week. And repeat in that pattern. I've also just starting using Muscle Milk to help increase mass. I might need some more help with some eating habits too. Like what to eat with my meals. I'm assuming things like eggs, steak, ham, etc? Five meals a day? Use one or two of those meals with Muscle milk? Oh and I'm trying to get eight hours of sleep each night.

    But I'm really here to ask about the workout and if three times a week is enough with what I want to do. I ride my bike a lot to work. It's about a fifteen minute bike ride all the time. That means two each work shift because I ride back. And then I do the cardio...so I'm assuming I don't need to focus that much on my legs? I really want to get my upper body in shape. I heard most ab exercises aren't going to get you that "six pack" that is desired. It has to come from low body fat and genes. But that is something I really, really want while gaining weight. Is this possible?

    So if you guys could help me out I'd really appreciate it. I'm doing this not only to improve my health, but to build my confidence in terms of "social" issues if you know what I mean. I probably left some stuff out I wanted to ask, but for now hopefully this post does the trick. Thanks.
    Last edited by Samari; Jun. 25/08 at 05:32 AM.

  14. #13
    malkore is offline Deceptimod
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    If it doesn't seem like enough workout in 60 minutes, ask yourself "am I putting enough intensity in this?"

    I find a lot of people don't give it 100% (or more) when they lift weights. I'm not talking about being stupid and hurting yourself...I mean being VERY focused on each rep, and really squeezing the muscle at the top of each rep. Explosive concentric...and then a slower eccentric.

  15. #14
    evolution is offline I love me some Mreik
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    I think only working out a muscle once a week is the least productive training session. A muscle recovers in 48-72 hours. This is why FBWs or push/pull or upper/lower splits work better...the more often you can hit a muscle, the more growth you can acquire (if kcals are sufficient).

    There are two programs I like to recommend to people:
    Joe Defranco's Westside for Skinny Bastards III (he has a 3 and 4 day template)
    Bill Starr's 5X5 program

    If you're really serious about gaining muscle then you need to really work on your caloric intake. You need a surplus of 3500 calories to gain or lose 1 pound. The easiest way to get a jest of how you're doing is to spend 4-6 weeks counting calories. You can track them easily through FitDay - Free Weight Loss and Diet Journal If you're not gaining weight, then you need to increase calories. You can get a rough idea of how many calories you need in a day by google your BMR (basal metabolic rate).

    You can continue to keep track but at least you'll have an idea of how much you need to eat.

  16. #15
    Samari is offline Warming Up
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    Google your BMR?

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