Build big wheels by blasting your quads in different rep ranges, including the use of power, muscle building and burn sets.
Workout Summary
  • Main Goal
    Build Muscle
  • Workout Type
    Single Muscle Group
  • Training Level
  • Program Duration8 weeks
  • Days Per Week
  • Time Per Workout45-60 minutes
  • Equipment Required
    Barbell, Bodyweight, Machines
  • Target Gender Male & Female
  • Workout PDF Download Workout

Workout Description

This leg workout will help you build quad and hamstring muscle by focusing on three different training approaches, all used in the same workout. Please note that you will be splitting up your quad and hamstring work into 2 training days. Perform your quad workout, and then 3 days later hammer your hamstrings. You will be working each muscle group only once a week.

  1. Power. You will perform 4 power sets to lead off the workout. Power sets are performed in the 3 to 5 rep range. Use the same weight for each of the 4 sets. When you can perform 5 reps for all 4 sets, move up in weight.
  2. Muscle. Muscle sets for quads are performed in the 8 to 15 rep range. Muscle sets for hamstrings are performed in the 6 to 12 rep range. Use the same weight for each of the sets. When you hit the upper rep limit for that muscle group (15 for quads and 12 for hamstrings), move up in weight. You will be performing 6 total muscle sets in each workout, using 3 different exercises.
  3. Burn. You will perform 2 burn sets at the end of your workout - generally using isolation movements. Pick a weight that allows you to hit 15 to 20 reps, and then perform 40 total reps. How? Do as many reps as possible, then take a slight rest and perform more reps. Rest only long enough to regain the energy and willpower to perform 1 to 3 more reps. Keep pushing yourself through the pain until you hit 40 total reps. When you can hit 25+ reps from the start without stopping, add weight. 
Quad Workout
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat - Power 4 3 to 5
Squat - Muscle 2 8 to 15
Leg Press - Muscle 2 8 to 15
Front Squat - Muscle 2 8 to 15
Leg Extension - Burn 1 40
Hack Squat - Burn 1 40
Hamstring Workout
Exercise Sets Reps
Romanian Deadlift - Power 4 3 to 5
Romanian Deadlift - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Wide Stance Good Morning - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Glute Ham Raise - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Leg Curl - Burn 2 40
Michael Lantz
Posted on: Thu, 08/25/2022 - 13:29

Hey so I was wondering how I would incorporate some calf exercises into one or both of the workouts or if they should have their own day.

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 08/26/2022 - 09:18

The way you would implement it is up to you. My personal suggestion would be to do a seated movement on one training day and a standing or straight leg movement on another workout day a couple of days later.

Posted on: Thu, 12/27/2012 - 07:56

hi there

Is this split, one day Hamstring, 1 day quads etc.... or is it quad and hamstring on the same day, twice a week

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 01/04/2013 - 11:43

A split - Two separate days.

Posted on: Wed, 10/31/2012 - 06:16

im very interested in developing my legs at the gym. the other day i was squatting and the coach at the gym came up to me and told me to stop doing them. im about to turn 17, 5'8 , 180 pounds and i can squat 280 pounds for 8 reps. ( been working out for 5 months ) . should i continue pushing hard at my age? will it affect my height or growth in any way ? thx a lot for everything id really appreciate your reply

Posted on: Sat, 01/07/2017 - 21:35

As long as you use proper form your growth will not be stunted.

Posted on: Wed, 10/17/2012 - 17:21

Would it be too much to do a spin class right before doing this leg exercise or would that be okay? I'm trying to plan out my days of when I should do cardio, but I was thinking I should just do cardio on arm days or rest days? Thanks!

Posted on: Fri, 02/24/2012 - 14:20

I'm 44 and have been working out again for about 6 weeks after an 8 year layoff. Due to an injury in my back, I don't do regular squats of any type. I currently do leg presses, leg extensions, hack squats, leg curls and d-bell squats. I work out legs 1x per week. What would you recommend to replace the 2 squat exercises in your program with?

Posted on: Fri, 02/10/2012 - 23:49

also , I have no hack machine .thanks

Posted on: Fri, 02/10/2012 - 23:02

hey Steve, I'm just starting your program and I lift at home. I do not have a leg press. Any substitutions, any Ideas ? Thanks

Posted on: Sun, 11/13/2011 - 15:00

Hey Steve,

I am a kicker for football, I weight 125 Pounds and our season actually ended today. Im going to be the starting kicker/punter for my junior year(next year). I have the technique as a kicker but I need to gain weight/muscle over an approximate 10 Months. I need to weight maybe 145 or more. Do you have any reccomendations that I should do? I need to gain mostly leg power as well as muscle overall in my body.

Thanks a lot,

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 12/07/2011 - 13:12

You want to focus on two things to maximize results:

1) Pushing yourself in the gym. Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight.

2) Eat to maximize muscle gains. Here are some articles that can help:

Posted on: Wed, 11/02/2011 - 23:15

How long should be rests between muscle and strentgh sets?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 11/10/2011 - 15:01

Rest at least 2 minutes between muscle and burn sets, and up to 3-5 minutes between power sets if need be.

Posted on: Fri, 09/30/2011 - 13:12

Hi i hurt my back a while ago and i am getting help but i cant dead-lift or i will hurt it more what can i replace for the Romanian Dead-Lift?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 09/30/2011 - 13:17

Without knowing the extent of your injury I am hesitant to recommend any exercises.

Posted on: Fri, 09/30/2011 - 13:58

I went to the doctor and he said that i have a tear in the right lower side of my back

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 09/30/2011 - 14:15

I would take it easy and stick with leg curls.

Posted on: Fri, 09/30/2011 - 14:25

ok thanks for the help

Posted on: Mon, 09/12/2011 - 14:37

Whats a glute ham rais?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 09/29/2011 - 15:45
Posted on: Mon, 09/12/2011 - 11:33

whats the difference between the 4 sets of power squats, and the 2 sets of muscle squats for quads?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 09/29/2011 - 15:44

Weight used and rep range.

Posted on: Mon, 08/15/2011 - 22:21

can you do hamstrings on back days

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 08/19/2011 - 14:13


Posted on: Wed, 08/10/2011 - 04:53

Hi Steve,

Please could you give me an alternative for the Glute Ham Raise.

I work out in a gym, but it doesn't have a machine for the Glute Ham Raise.

I don't find doing it on the floor with my feet anchoured very effective as I compensate too much by using my hands.

I am doing many of your workouts now and they are producing great results.



M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 08/12/2011 - 15:01

Hi Richard,

I would add leg curls then.

Posted on: Tue, 08/09/2011 - 15:12

How long would it take for me to see results ?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 08/12/2011 - 15:03

Hi John,

That depends of what results you are expecting. Building big legs can takes years and require a bodybuilding style eating plan.

Posted on: Thu, 06/23/2011 - 16:37

Will.this.workout increase butt size?

Posted on: Tue, 05/17/2011 - 02:05

Is the stiff leg deadlift the same as a regular deadlift

Matt Condrich
Posted on: Sun, 03/13/2011 - 21:48

Hello Mr.Shaw. My name is Matt Condrich. I play training for my senior season of football. I need to get more explosive and faster, because im short for a linebacker. But what i lack in height I make up for in power. I squat 250 lbs ten times and leg press 500 lbs ten times. Can you give me some advice on how I can get more explosive? Any advice would help. Thank You.

Posted on: Sun, 03/13/2011 - 13:35

is there a good alternative that i can do instead of the glute ham raises? im working out from home.

Posted on: Thu, 03/10/2011 - 00:04

Hey, i have been doing alot of upper body lifting lately becuase i had knee surgery a few months ago, preventing me from running track. i had the medial section of my meniscus removed = ( which put me out of track for the winter season and part of spring. i can curl and extend the leg now with as much weight as b4 the surgery and it feels great! when i run on the treadmil the impact bothers me alot tho so im sticking to the elliptical for now.
As far as squats and other closed chain excercises that put more stress on the knee than like extensions and curls, what do u think i should do....

I would rele like to start working my legs if i cant run yet, ik there is no impact ofcourse like that in running, but would squats be too much??? IF SO WHAT CANI DOOOO. i miss running = (

Posted on: Thu, 02/10/2011 - 19:34

hey steve i was wondering if you knew of any exercise that focuses on the inner quads. i injured my knee a few years ago and because of the down time one leg is more developed than the other ive tried one leg squats and presses the outer quad has grown but the inner is still lagging. i know leg extensions work great but they put a little too much torque on my knee. any suggestions?

Posted on: Fri, 01/28/2011 - 09:15

Need to know what Glute Ham Raises are? and what is another exercise to substitute if needed? Thankyou Steve... Your Power, Muscle, Burn workouts are really working!!!

Posted on: Mon, 12/06/2010 - 21:44

i am a football player that weights 145 and im tryin to get up to 170 beforre next season. will this workout help me gain that weight in 7 months?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Tue, 12/07/2010 - 08:52

Hi John,

This workout can help with leg strength, but it is not a complete workout. I recommend finding a complete muscle building workout that fits your schedule, and that includes squats. Here are some workouts from M&S:

As far as weight gain, you will need to make sure you are eating properly. Here is an article to get you started:

With your goal, you need to gain 3-4 pounds per month. Train hard - Using good form, always push yourself on every set. When you can perform the recommended number of reps for a set, add weight. As far as eating, if you aren't gaining weight fast enough, add 300-500 more daily calories. Try adding calorie dense foods like whole milk, weight gainers and almonds. These add calories and don't fill you up as much as solid foods.

Posted on: Thu, 11/25/2010 - 14:35

Hey Steve im wondering if u could make a calves workout. i really can't figure out how to work them out good. My thighs are getting bigger but my calves are staying the same size.

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Fri, 11/26/2010 - 16:01

Hi Dave,

I might suggest switching things up and going for lower rep sets, 6-8 reps, with heavy weight. Add weight at every opportunity. Give this a try. It flys against conventional wisdom, but is known to work.

Posted on: Sun, 11/14/2010 - 04:34

can i eat normally when i am not doing any workout

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 11/15/2010 - 08:37

Hi Arnold,

If you want to maximize results, you must eat properly 7 days per week. Here are some articles that will help:

Posted on: Sat, 11/13/2010 - 07:57

do you have any tips to lose my stubburn fats

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Sat, 11/13/2010 - 08:52
Posted on: Thu, 11/11/2010 - 14:40

Hey, I want to keep my legs toned but my knees are shot, what do you recommend?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 11/11/2010 - 14:51

Hi Tony,

I would need to know more about your knee injury.

Posted on: Thu, 10/21/2010 - 13:57

can you explain about power sets and muscle and burn sets. I am a 42 yr old guy who knows nothing on the terms, LOL Thanks again

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 10/21/2010 - 14:01

Hi David,

They are terms I created. The specifics for each type of set are detailed above.

Posted on: Thu, 10/21/2010 - 11:00

Steve, since I have kind of shied away from legs, can you explain a bit about power sets and "muscle and burn sets".. I have worried because I do not want to end up with the so called prison built "big upper body and chicken legs" Want to thank you for all your advice, I know squats are core muscle builders, but what you have given me is a awesome alternative...Can't thank you enough and Muscle and Strength..

Thanks David

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 10/21/2010 - 12:59

Hi David,

I'd be glad to answer questions. What specific questions do you have about the various sets?