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4 Day Maximum Mass Workout

Start the New Year Right: Awaken the New You
A mass building routine that features a great combination of effective compound and isolation movements along with intense, high impact five minute burn sets.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Split
Intermediate
8 weeks
4
45-60 minutes
Barbell, Bodyweight, Dumbbells, Machines
Male & Female
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Workout Description

This is an intermediate muscle building workout for lifters who:

  1. Have experienced beginner gains and are confident they know how to build muscle.
  2. Have a solid grasp of exercise form on the major compound movements.
  3. Know how to set up an effective muscle building eating plan.

Overload. Overload is critical to the muscle building process. Push each set for the maximum number of reps, stopping that set either when you feel your form is slipping, or if you feel like you may fail on the next rep. Do not train to failure. The point is to stimulate growth, not annihilate your body and central nervous system.

Add weight to each exercise as frequently as possible, when it makes sense. I recommend using the same weight for every set of a given exercise, and when you are able to perform a comfortable number of reps on each set, add weight.

Rep Ranges. Rep ranges are simply a guideline. It's is ok to go over them, or a hair under at times. Again, the magic is overload. Rep ranges are simply a tool.

5 Minute Burn Periods. For each body part you will perform a 5 minute burn out period. These sets are brutal. Pick a weight that allows you to perform about 12-15 reps. Over a 5 minute period you perform as many reps as possible with that weight, starting and stopping sets as needed. Rest only long enough to catch your bearings and breathe, and then start knowing out more reps.

5 minute burn out periods are not about sets and reps. They are about finishing off an already fatigued muscle. Don't obsess (or even count)  over how many total sets you do. Instead, try to do as many reps as possible in 5 minutes using whatever rest periods you need to survive.

4 Day Maximum Mass Workout Split

Day 1
Back and Biceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Deadlift 2 5
One Arm Dumbbell Row 3 8-12
Wide Grip Pull Up or Lat Pull Down 3 10-12
Barbell Row 3 8-12
Seated Cable Row or Machine Row 5 Minutes Burn
EZ Bar Preacher Curl 3 10-12
Concentration Curl 3 10-12
Seated Dumbbell Curl 5 Minutes Burn
Day 2
Chest and Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Bench Press 3 6-10
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3 8-12
Chest Dip 3 AMAP*
Cable Crossover or Pec Dec 3 12-15
Machine Press or Dumbbell Bench Press 5 Minutes Burn
EZ Bar Skullcrusher 3 8-12
Two Arm Seated Dumbbell Extension 3 8-12
Cable Tricep Extension 5 Minutes Burn
Day 4
Quads, Hamstrings and Calves
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 3 6-10
Leg Press 3 15-20
Hack Squat or Dumbbell Lunge 3 8-12
Leg Extension 5 Minutes Burn
Stiff Leg Deadlift 3 8-12
Leg Curl 5 Minutes Burn
Standing Calf Raise 3 10-15
Seated Calf Raise 5 Minutes Burn
Day 5
Shoulders, Traps and Forearms
Exercise Sets Reps
Seated Barbell Press 3 6-10
Seated Arnold Press 3 8-12
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3 10-15
Hammer Strength Press or Smith Press 5 Minutes Burn
Upright Row 3 8-12
Barbell Shrug or Dumbbell Shrug 5 Minutes Burn
Seated Barbell Wrist Curl 3 12-15
Barbell Static Hold 5 Minutes Burn

*AMAP = As many as possible.

Barbell Static Holds. Instead of performing reps you simply hold the bar as long as possible.

616 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Mon, 08/07/2017 - 20:02
John

My wife is overweight. We're both starting g at the same time. Would this be good for her to build fat and tighten loose skin?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 08/08/2017 - 09:02
JoshEngland

Hi John,

This is more of an intermediate based workout program. Some beginners might be able to perform it if they've been exposed to weight training before. If you guys are brand new to the weight room, I'd highly recommend working together with a trainer for a couple of workouts so they can introduce you to all the lifts as well as an appropriate program suitable for your goals.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Mon, 08/07/2017 - 09:57
Danny

Hey josh,

for each compound movement, would it be alright if i reduced the rep range to a lower range? like for flat bench press, doing 2 mid range reps and the last set to 4-6 reps.
and another question, can i apply what i i just said above to the barbell shoulder press and changing that compound to a standing military? thanks!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 08/07/2017 - 10:15
JoshEngland

Hi Danny,

Yes, depending on your goal that should be fine.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Tue, 07/18/2017 - 03:05
Rz

Hey Josh!

I been on this program for two weeks. I tend to do the higher end of reps for the compound movements that leaves me gassed towards the isolation exercises. Also, I did start the program as a beginner. Would you advise switching the program at this stage or persist with the plan following the lower end of reps. Cheers.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 07/18/2017 - 09:14
JoshEngland

Hi RZ,

That's awesome ! Congrats on your success so far!

You can do either or. If you're enjoying this program, I'd recommend sticking with it and trying to make it harder by either switching up the rep ranges or increasing the weight you're using (or both). If it's becoming stale you could look for a new program to try out.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 07/13/2017 - 05:31
Andrei

Do we have to do the exercises in this specific order?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 07/13/2017 - 10:04
JoshEngland

Hi Andrei,

No you don't. But it's generally a good idea to do compound exercises (big lifts - squats, bench, deadlift) at the beginning of your workout. Then, you can do more isolated exercises (chest fly, bicep curl) towards the end.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sun, 07/02/2017 - 11:07
Kim

How about the warm ups? is there any specific warm ups i should do before the workouts? or should i just use lighter weight before the actual workout and follow the sets and reps after my usual warm ups

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 07/05/2017 - 09:23
JoshEngland

Hi Kim,

This article is a great starting point: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/warming-up-for-dummies

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sun, 07/02/2017 - 06:58
sherif

Many thanks for the great workout routine.. could we add cardio to this mass building program

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 07/05/2017 - 09:22
JoshEngland

Hi Sherif,

Of course! Just be sure to pick a form of cardio that doesn't negatively affect your ability to recover from your workouts or your performance in the weight room.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 07/01/2017 - 10:08
Mustafa

Hi josh
How to do Barbell Static Hold
There is no video to learn
Or some pictures

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 07/05/2017 - 09:17
JoshEngland

Hi Mustafa,

To do a static hold you hold a barbell in front of you or dumbbells to the side of you until you can no longer hold the weight any more. We will try to get a demonstration video online in the near future.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 06/28/2017 - 02:41
Iasoka

Dear Josh,
I have been doing this awsome Workout plan for 5 weeks and I can see a Clear progress. Thanks again for your support. I need to ask you a question please....

In the morning I'm having a Pea protein shake and in the evening after my intense gym workout I'm having Gold standard whey protein isolate with 1 BCAA capsule (1000mg). Is this ok? Please advise me.

Cheers!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 06/28/2017 - 09:37
JoshEngland

Hi Iasoka,

Awesome! Congratulations on your progress!

This supplement stack seems good to me, but it's always best to consult with your medical practitioner on your specific supplementation needs.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 06/28/2017 - 09:59
Iasoka

Thanks Josh. You guys are the best!!!

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Posted Thu, 06/22/2017 - 18:27
Tarek

Hi Josh ,
Thanks a lot for this good workout . but i was wondering what is the best workout after 8 weeks ?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 06/23/2017 - 09:10
JoshEngland

Hi Tarek,

I'm glad you're enjoying the workout, but I can't take credit for it as it isn't mine. Best is relative as everyone will react differently to the same workout. It's really about experimenting and finding what works best for you and sticking to it. With that said, below are a couple of my favorite 4 day splits:

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/phul-workout

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/fast-mass-program

Hope this helps!

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Posted Mon, 06/05/2017 - 23:17
Akshadraj

This is an awesome workout routine since I can't dedicate 7 days of the week due to a busy schedule! Thank you so much. But I was wondering, if you could give me some abs exercises and not a workout routine for core. I'd like to do abs after every gym day.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 06/06/2017 - 09:46
JoshEngland

Hi Akshadraj,

Sure, check out our ab exercise database with dozens of ab exercise demonstration videos. You can then decide which you'd like to include in your workout program.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/exercises/abs

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 06/07/2017 - 00:43
Akshadraj

Thanks a lot. But I'm stupid when it comes to abs workouts. I'll do abs alternate days. In that case could you tell me which ones to take in the workout or how to decide which ones to do. Also how many? Thank you

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 06/07/2017 - 10:20
JoshEngland

Hi Akshadraj,

Core training is going to be highly individualized. So it's tough to make recommendations over the internet not knowing your movement patterns and pain points.

We do have an excellent article on understanding core training. It should help put things in better perspective and provide recommendations on a couple ab exercises everyone could benefit from.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/understanding-core-training

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sun, 05/28/2017 - 15:15
Gustavo

Awesome routine thanks for sharing!
Deadlift and stiff leg deadlift seem to really hurt my back, is there other exercises i could perform instead that are easier on my back? , thanks in advance .

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 05/30/2017 - 09:57
JoshEngland

Hi Gustavo,

For the time being - you could easily remove those 2 exercises and still see progress with the amount of volume in this program.

That being said, I'd highly recommend seeking out a good professional strength coach or trainer who will take the time to study your movement patterns and help you work on those movements until you get to the point where you can do them without feeling pain. These movements are foundation movements and being proficient in them will pay dividends as you get older.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 05/24/2017 - 00:16
Jacob

Thanks for the workout plan, I just commenced my first day yesterday! Yes - the 5 min burn workouts were hard!! Though I'm wondering if you can please expand on the reasoning for these? Does this assist with building mass like overloading does? What are the benefits to working off an already fatigued muscle? Any comments would be appreciated!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 05/24/2017 - 09:10
JoshEngland

Hi Jacob,

The idea behind the burn sets is to create a muscle pump. You can learn more about "The Pump" here: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/pump-broscience-muscle-builder

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 05/17/2017 - 14:10
Iasoka

Hi there,
Thank you so much for the fantastic workouts plan. Love it. Could you please tell me is it ok to add some extra workout on each day. Eg: chest day can I add two more workouts including your workouts? On biceps day can I add EZ bar biceps curl and hammer curl to your workouts?

Cheers!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 05/18/2017 - 09:10
JoshEngland

Hi Iasoka,

Sure, you're more than welcome to add additional volume to this workout if you like. Although, it is not exactly necessary and probably won't lead to additional muscle gain (if that is your goal in doing it).

Gaining muscle is a very long term goal. Giving workouts consistent effort, maintaining a proper diet, and getting 7-9 hours of sleep every night is going to help you achieve muscle growth a lot more in the long run than adding additional exercises to a workout will.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 05/20/2017 - 07:41
Iasoka

Hi Josh,
Thank you so much for your prompt reply. You guys are amazing. I think this is my favourite website now. Something great articles to explore. I really appreciate your support!!
Cheers!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 05/22/2017 - 09:20
JoshEngland

Hi Iasoka,

You're very welcome! That makes me so happy to hear! We really appreciate your support. Keep crushing your goals!!

If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to reach out!

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Posted Thu, 05/18/2017 - 22:42
Iasoka

Hi Josh,
Thank you so much for your advice. I really appreciate it. I'm a beginner. I thought add more workouts makes more muscle gains? Could you please explain me that?

Thanks again for your kind support!
Cheers!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 05/19/2017 - 09:16
JoshEngland

Hi Iasoka,

You're welcome! That is a common misconception. Working out breaks down your muscles, so they can be rebuilt. Recovering is what builds them and eventually makes them bigger. And the ways you recover properly is through proper nutrition, sufficient (but still lightly active) rest days, and sleep.

This program is also an intermediate level program. You may be better off starting out with a beginner workout. I've provided a link to one of our most popular beginner workouts below, as well as our expert guide to building muscle. The expert guide is an excellent resource to learn how your body actually goes about building lean muscle mass.

Workout: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/jason-blaha-ice-cream-fitness...

Expert Guide: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/expert-guides/muscle-building

Hope this helps!

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Posted Mon, 05/08/2017 - 19:18
Mike

So i have been doing this workout for 3 month and i mastered it

Whats the next stage?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 05/09/2017 - 10:42
JoshEngland

Hi Mike,

Is this workout still helping you accomplish your goals? Could you increase the weight you are using for each exercise? Could you slow down the rep tempo to a 2/0/2 count with the weight you are currently using? Could you lower your rest intervals between sets?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, you don't necessarily have to change your workout program.

But if you can't do any of those things and/or simply want to change things up you can check out our full workouts database (link below) for a workout that you do find challenging.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workout-routines

Hope this helps!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 05/11/2017 - 09:06
JoshEngland

Hi Mike,

You're welcome. So, tempo can be explained by breaking down the different parts of the movement to look like eccentric portion/isometric portion/concentric portion. A 2/0/2 rep tempo would be 2 seconds eccentric or lowering phase, 0 second isometric hold, and 2 second concentric phase.

Changing up your rep tempo is a great way to make workouts more challenging without having to come up with a completely new program which adds in a whole new component in variability.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 05/10/2017 - 17:58
Mike

Hi Josh,
Thanks for getting back...

Can you explain a bit the 2/0/2 tempo? Im not familiar with the term

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Posted Wed, 05/17/2017 - 14:01
Iasoka

Hi Josh.
I was searching months and this is the best workout schedule I found. Thank you guys!! Could you please tell me is it ok to add extra workouts. For example : when I do my biceps can I add EZ bar biceps curl and Hammer curl.......on chest day can I add few extra workouts like Incline press and some other chest workouts?

Cheers!

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Posted Mon, 05/08/2017 - 17:57
Tommy

what would you recommend for hitting abs with this plan?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 05/09/2017 - 10:34
JoshEngland

Hi Tommy,

While you don't necessarily have to specifically target your abs with this program, if you feel as though it'll help you with your individual goals, you're more than welcome to do so. I've provided a link to ab workouts database down below. Feel free to add one of them to the end of your workouts or on your off days.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/abs

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 05/04/2017 - 11:22
Genn

Is it okay to add weight on the AMP*, like using a dip belt?

Thanks

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 05/04/2017 - 11:48
JoshEngland

Hi Genn,

I don't see why not. Go for it! :)

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Posted Fri, 04/28/2017 - 03:48
John

On the burn sets, is the goal to lift a lighter weight and do as many reps as possible. Or to lift a heavier weight and pause every now and again for 5 mins

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 04/28/2017 - 09:17
JoshEngland

Hi John,

Volume and intensity are inversely correlated. As you raise the amount of reps you preform for a given set, you have to lower the weight you use for that set.

So the goal for burn sets is to utilize a lighter weight for higher reps in an attempt to induce a "muscle pump".

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 04/05/2017 - 02:04
Abdullah Al-Ghamdi

Your suggested plan seems amazing but I have a little problem. I'm only able to workout four successive days and then take three days rest. Would it be as beneficial as your plan?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 04/05/2017 - 09:11
JoshEngland

Hi Abdullah,

Although it's not ideal, you could perform this program in that manner if that is the only way your schedule allows you to.

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Posted Wed, 04/05/2017 - 09:35
Abdullah Al-Ghamdi

Thanks. I have one more question if you allow me. What supplements do you suggest to enhance the results? And on what basis should I take them and at what time? Thanks again for your prompt reaponses.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 04/05/2017 - 10:02
JoshEngland

Hi Abdullah,

You're welcome! Supplementing is highly individualize, so it's difficult to state which supplements will help you with your goals definitively. Below is a link to an article that recommends some good starting points. Also below is a link to our deals and coupons page where you'll be able to find some of those recommendations on sale.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/absolute-beginner-guide-bodyb...

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/store/promos.html

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 04/08/2017 - 05:12
Abdullah Al-Ghamdi

Good morning bro. I tried to modify my program and found it possible to exercise on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. What is the best program I can follow in your openion? Many thanks for your helpful information.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 04/10/2017 - 09:46
JoshEngland

Hi Abdullah,

It comes down to really what you prefer and enjoy to do. Do you like traditional body part splits? Than the page you're currently on is a great program to test out.

Personally, I enjoy hitting upper/lower programs. They work each body part twice in a week. Below is a link to one of our more popular upper/lower templates:

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/phul-workout