Tag: Bodybuilding

Basic Bodybuilding Program for Beginners

Basic Bodybuilding Program for Beginners

This is a 4-Days per Week Basic Bodybuilding Program for Beginners that want to get JACKED! It is a great place to start if you want to build muscle mass and pack on size! Just remember, to get bigger you have to eat BIG too. But don’t worry, we can help with that too!

Get BIG Diet Plan >>

Wanna Build Muscle and Strength? Get our Base Of Strength Training Program >>

Bodybuilding Program for Beginners Workout

This Beginner Bodybuilding Program is pretty simple…just follow the workouts, trying to add weight to all your exercises every week. And the stronger you get, the bigger you will get. It’s that simple!

So, if you want to continuously build muscle mass while progressing at your own pace, then this Basic Bodybuilding Program for Beginners is for you!


Bodybuilding Program Details

First, for every exercise, warm-up to a good working weight that will allow you to stay within the given rep range for every set. Then begin your working sets; either sticking with that weight or adding 5-10 pound each set until you can no longer stay within the given rep range.

For example, if you are doing squats and your given rep range is 5-10 reps, start with a weight you can do for 10-12 reps. Do your first set of 10, then either stick to that weight for all your sets or move up 10 pounds every set. When you get to a weight where 5 reps is hard, then either stick to that weight or move back down in weight until all your sets are complete. And every week try to go heavier and heavier.

The same principle applies to all accessory exercises.

If you want, you can also add some cardio or conditioning in, after all your accessory work. Then make sure to do some Mobility Work to prevent injury and help with recovery.

IMPORTANT: Recovery is the most important thing! Learn why >>

Get our Beginner Strength Training Program >>


Weekly Bodybuilding Workout Schedule

*This weekly Schedule can vary as needed but is best in this form. Try to have at least 1 rest day after 1-2 training days in a row.


Bodybuilding Program Workouts

Leg Day Bodybuilding Workout

Workout 1 – Legs

Squat     5 x 5-10 + AMRAP

Leg Press     5-10 x 10-15

Leg Curls     5 x 10-15

Walking Lunges     4 x 20 steps

Planks     3 x 60 sec.

AMRAP = As Many Reps As Possible (use the same working weight as your previous set). You can also do a Drop Set for this where you do almost as many reps as possible with one weight, then drop some of the weight off an immediately do another AMRAP, repeating this as many times as you wish.


Chest and Triceps Bodybuilding Workout

Workout 2 – Chest and Triceps

Bench Press     5 x 5-10 + AMRAP

Incline Bench Press or Closegrip Bench Press     5 x 5-10

Dumbbell Press or Incline Dumbbell Press     5-10 x 10-15

Press Downs     5-10 x 10-15

Face Pulls     5-10 x 10-15

Weighted Crunches or Hanging Leg Raises     5-10 x 10-15


Back and Biceps Bodybuilding Workout

Workout 3 – Back and Biceps

“-“ = As many sets as it takes to get 30-50 total reps.

Pull-Ups     – x 30-50

Deadlift     5 x 5 + AMRAP

Dumbbell Rows     5 x 8-10

Lat Pull-Downs     5-10 x 10-15

Dumbbell Curls     4 x 10-15

Hammer Curls     4 x 10-15

Side Planks     3 x 30-45 sec. each


Bodybuilding Shoulder Workout

Workout 4 – Shoulders

Dumbbell Military Press     5 x 10-15

Reverse Flyes     5 x 10-15

Lateral Raises     5 x 10-15

Rotator Cuff Work     4 x 15-25

Weighted Crunches or Hanging Leg Raises     5-10 x 10-15


This is the end of our 4-days per week Basic Bodybuilding Program for Beginners.

More Workout Programs >>

JACKED Muscle Plan

The JACKED Muscle Plan

How to get Big and Strong

If you workout, then we know you want to get JACKED; aka Build Muscle, get Bigger and Gain Mass or Size. I mean, who doesn’t? The thing is, as with everything in life, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. This article will go over the best way of how to get big and strong! So then you can look like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, The Hulk, or the new Bodybuilding Mr. Olympia sooner than you think!

First: Get the JACKED Muscle Program! >>

Jacked How To Get Bigger and Build Muscle Mass

Read Part 2: SHREDDED – How To Get Lean and Cut! >>

Getting bigger is easy. All you have to do to get bigger is eat more calories than you use for energy. It is really that simple!

However, there is more to it than that. So, let’s break it down…

Basal Metabolic Rate

First, your body has what is known as a Resting or Basal Metabolic Rate. This is the base level amount of calories that your body uses just to survive or sustain normal function. So if you were to just lay in bed sleeping all day without movement, this is the number of calories you would burn. Assuming everything else is constant.

Now on top of your Basal Metabolic Rate, you use energy to go through daily activities and exercise. And any movement adds to your Basal Metabolic Rate and overall calorie expenditure. So, the more calories you expend, the higher your total calorie intake for the day needs to be in order to maintain constant body weight.

Basically, if you eat fewer calories than you use daily, you will begin to lose weight. If you eat more calories than you use for energy, you will grow.

Now, this is the simplest form of overall weight adjustment. However, it does not answer the question of how to get JACKED, or build muscle. 

How To Get BIG

“To build muscle you need to eat more and exercise more.”

To get BIG and JACKED you need to increase your activity level while in a calorie surplus. More simply put, to build muscle you need to eat more and exercise more.

Now for specific growth, such as building more muscle in a certain area, you must stimulate that area through your activity. For example, if you want bigger arms you must train your arms in order to stimulate muscular growth while in a caloric surplus. If you want bigger legs, then you must simulate your legs to grow and eat more. Though it is a simple concept, the overall work is difficult. 

Bodybuilding Workout Programs to get Bigger arms and legs

Get JACKED Muscle and Strength Programs:

The perfect program for building solid muscle! >>

Squat Program for Bigger Legs! >>

Bench Press Program for Bigger Arms and Chest! >>

Deadlift Program for a Bigger Back! >>

Intensity + Volume = BIG n’ JACKED

“There must be a combination of optimal training intensity and work volume to stimulate growth.”

Now, to stimulate muscular growth you need to train with optimal intensity and volume. That means you must have enough intensity to place stress on your muscles for growth with enough total volume of work.

For example, if you want to build muscle in your legs you need to do activities with enough intensity to create stress for growth. Plus, do enough overall volume to create a significant muscular breakdown. An example of this optimal training can be sprints, plyometrics jumps or squats done for multiple sets and repetitions.

You simply cannot build more muscular size in your legs by doing low-intensity exercises, like walking or jogging. That even includes if the overall volume is numerous miles (assuming you can already walk and jog a reasonable amount). That form of aerobic exercise stimulates mitochondrial growth within the muscle cells so they have greater endurance, but is muscle wasting (increase muscle breakdown).

On the opposite end of the spectrum, you cannot do only one set of high-intensity exercise, such as a sprint, maximal jump or heavy squat set, and stimulate growth. There must be a combination of optimal training intensity and work volume to significantly breakdown the muscle fibers and allow for growth.

Therefore, to accumulate the greatest amount of work volume while using optimal intensity, do multiple sets of moderate-high intensity exercise in order to stimulate growth. 

Do The Least, To Get The Most

“The goal should be to do the least amount of work in order to obtain the greatest amount of results.”

However, every time you stimulate muscular growth, you increase your total work capacity and overall strength. This means that each time you stimulate growth you will need to do more total work each time thereafter.

So, the goal should be to do the least amount of work in order to obtain the greatest amount of results. Do the least to get the most. This is often difficult.

Many of us want major results NOW! So, we do the most amount of work we can handle and gain some quick results. Then, after doing this continuously, our body will adapt to the large workload and no longer need to grow.

If you did not reach your goal, then what do you do next? You just did everything you could do to stimulate growth and you still did not reach your goal. So your only choice for progression is to do even more and more work until you burn out, or get injured.

Be Patient

A better strategy for this is to be patient with your goals and work hard, but be smart. That is one of the reasons that the Mathias Method starts with very few exercises in the lower levels and increases work overtime, in order to allow for continuous growth. We want you to reach your goals as efficiently as possible without negatively affecting your future goals.

Remember, strength training and body transformation are long term goals that need to consider everything at once. You may be able to reach one goal quickly. But if that denies you the ability to reach future goals you may want to take a different approach, in order to obtain them all and more!

The Best Way To Build Muscle

So, what is the best way to build muscle?

It is best to train with 65-85% intensity, for 5-15 repetitions, over 4-10 sets, to stimulate the most muscular growth. And for complete growth, it is best to use varying intensities and rep ranges within these given parameters. This will stress growth in multiple ways so that your muscle cells gain both size and density for overall better function.

These parameters apply to all muscle-building exercises. However, what is best depends on the exercise.

For main compound lifts, which are known for building the greatest amount of muscle mass, you can use a lot more weight than other exercises. So use that to your advantage and do most of your heavy work (70-85%, 5-8 reps, 4-6 sets) with these lifts. Then do your lighter work with accessory exercises.

Of course, make sure to switch things up once in a while too.

Intensity Techniques

What about training to failure and using intensity techniques to stimulate growth?

Though there are multiple intensity techniques that can be used to increase muscular breakdown, and stimulate growth, within a muscle, total work volume has a greater overall effect. With this in mind, it is still helpful to use intensity techniques such as taking sets to failure, overloading techniques, forced reps and drop sets.

However, they are best used sparingly. If used too soon in a training session or too frequently in a training cycle, their effect greatly decreases.

To use these intensity techniques most effectively, only use one variation, once per week for each muscle group. And only after all of your main work is done. This allows for the greatest amount of muscular growth within a specific area, without greatly affecting the overall training volume.

Be cautious though. Taking your muscles to failure too often can create too much damage and cause injury. And will decrease function as they become adept to failing at a certain point every time. 

Benefits Of Being JACKED

Another great benefit to being JACKED and building muscle is the increased metabolic effect it has on your Basal Metabolic Rate.

What I mean is that muscle tissue is calorie expensive to your body as it needs to be maintained more than your fat stores. So, just by building more muscle you will increase your metabolism and need to eat more calories each day to maintain a constant or increased weight balance. This can be a very positive effect as it allows you to have greater control over your weight management.

Just think…if you only consume 2,000 calories each day to maintain weight, then a fluctuation of 500 calories (approximately 1 meal or 1 bowl of ice cream) can have a large effect on your health and energy. Those 500 calories are 25% of your overall caloric intake for the day. Whereas, if you have a larger muscle mass and consume 3,000 calories per day, having the same caloric fluctuation will have only a 17% effect on your energy balance.

This allows you to have greater energy reserves and extra meals, or cheat meals, will have less of an effect.

So if you like cheat meals, increase your muscular workload and eat more to build muscle.

JACKED Nutrition

“When attempting to build muscle, it is best to make small caloric jumps by adding only 200-500 more calories to your daily intake.”

Now, let’s take a moment to talk about nutrition, and what it takes to be JACKED.

When I say to “eat more” that is exactly what I mean. To gain more muscle and overall size you need to eat more food than you did before.

However, this should not be a major change because, the same as with doing too much work at the start of training, if you try to gain weight too quickly it will likely add to your fat stores rather than just adding muscle mass.

So, to get bigger and build muscle, it would be best to make small caloric jumps by adding only 200-500 calories to your daily intake. That is simply another snack or a small increase in portions throughout the day.

I recommend you start with the smallest caloric increase to see how your body responds before adding more calories. A more slow-moderate approach to adding size will help to build muscle more rather than add to fat stores. As most of the calories will be used to recover from your added workload.

Protein For Muscle Growth

These extra, or added, calories should be from balanced sources rather than just one macronutrient, such as protein. Learn how much protein you actually need >>

Often times people that want to build muscle just add large amounts of protein supplements to their diets with the belief that more protein stimulates more muscular growth. This is not entirely true. Yes, protein is needed to build muscle. However, so are numerous other nutrients that make up muscle tissue.

If you only eat additional protein, you will only use the amount required for new growth. Which is not much above your normal daily needs. Plus, the extra protein will be used for energy or added to your fat stores.

Plus, protein is not an efficient energy source so this would not be optimal for performance.

It is best to consume 0.8-1g of protein per pound of body weight in a normal muscle building diet.

Overall, protein is the same as any other caloric nutrient when consuming too much. If you eat more than is used, it will be added to your fat stores. So to build muscle, maintain a balanced diet that does not lack any nutrient and eat more of it.

Just eat a little more of everything and keep working hard. As soon as you stop growing, add slightly more calories to continue growth. Small incremental changes can create the greatest success, and building muscle is a great example of that.

Final Notes

Overall, building muscle to get JACKED is a simple task that takes a lot of hard work to accomplish. Just eat more and put a lot of hard work into your training.

Remember to be patient with your training and allow your body to recover properly between training sessions.

Stay focused and keep getting stronger! 

Read Part 2: SHREDDED – How To Get Lean and Cut! >>

Get JACKED Muscle and Strength Programs:Bodybuilding Workout Programs to get Bigger arms and legs

The perfect program for building solid muscle! >>

Squat Program for Bigger Legs! >>

Bench Press Program for Bigger Arms and Chest! >>

Deadlift Program for a Bigger Back! >>


Related Reading:

Keto Diet – 7 Unexpected Health Benefits >>

RIPPED Six Pack Abs >>

Fat Loss Forever >>


Follow the Strength Blog to get updates on more great content like this!

Follow the Strength Blog!

Steroids and PEDs in Strength Sports + My Thoughts

My Thoughts on Steroids and PEDs

First, Anabolic Steroids are one of many Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs) used throughout sports and competition today. It is believed that they are almost required for Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Bodybuilding Competitions and are known as “part of the sport” in powerlifting. Then, of course, there is always something about steroids occurring in the Olympics and sports such as Professional Baseball, Football, and most physical sports and competition. This article will go over my thoughts on the use of drugs, steroids, PEDs and even supplements for both professional athletes and normal gym bros. 

Know that no drugs or supplements are necessary to make the Mathias Method Strength System or any of our Strength Programs effective.

Note: Anabolic Steroids and most PEDs are illegal in the United States without a doctor’s prescription.

Check out our NEW FULL POWER Powerlifting Program!


What are PEDs?

PEDs, or Performance Enhancing Drugs, are drugs used to help increase performance in any given sport. The most common PEDs are:

  • Anabolic Steroids – Used to increase strength, muscle growth, and recovery. The effects mimic those of increased Testosterone, but tenfold.
  • Human Growth Hormone (HGH) – Increases growth throughout the body, but mainly used for increasing muscle mass.
  • Testosterone – Used to increase the effects of natural testosterone to build muscle, increase strength, and burn body fat.
  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) – Used by men to increase free testosterone if their bodies don’t make enough naturally.
  • Erythropoietin (EPO) – Used by endurance athletes increase oxygen uptake by increasing red blood cell count.
  • Stimulants – Anything that greatly increases performance to where your performance will noticeably decrease without it.

There are always more being created and used, but these are the most common in use today.

If I forgot some, or you know of any others, tell me about it in the comments below and I will add them to the list.


Steroids in Strength Sports

Before we get too deep into this though, let’s get one thing straight…Bodybuilding, Powerlifting, Strongman, and even professional arm wrestling, are in fact “sports”. They may not seem as athletic as Football or Olympic style sports, but they are still competition among athletes.

These sports that rely heavily on a competitor’s strength to win are known as Strength Sports. If you disagree, let me know in the comments below.

With that being said, anything that relies heavily on an athlete’s strength or muscle mass is likely going to have some steroid or PED use. This is because there are so many athletes that are trying to be the best, and to be the best, means to do whatever it takes. Even if it means taking drugs to defeat the competition. The question is, is it cheating?

In the 2008 documentary, Bigger, Stronger, Faster by Chris Bell, which dives deep into the world of steroid use in all forms of competition, Chris asks:

“Is it really cheating, if everyone is doing it?”

I will get into my answer in a minute, but let me know what you think in the comments below. 

The thing is, not everyone is doing it. Many professionals choose to stay drug free. However, how many of them are known as the best? And should would they even be held in higher reguards if they defeated those taking PEDs? Everyone has their own opinion on this, but I want to know yours.


How I Feel About Steroids, PEDs, and Supplement Use

I understand why people use them, but they are not for me.

For Others

My feelings towards others using anabolic steroids or other performance-enhancing drugs are of understanding. I do not always agree with the reasons of why people take drugs to better themselves, but I understand the mindset of being the best.

First off, if you are just a regular gym bro that wants to look good by taking a bunch of supplements and drugs, then you are just being lazy. If you do not have a legitimate reason of why you are putting your health at risk just to look good for others, then you are simply being dumb. Sadly, this is about 90%+ of the people that use anabolic steroids today, as stated in Bigger, Stronger, Faster.

However, if you are an elite athlete that is working towards being the “Best In The World” at whatever sport you are competing in, then I understand your mindset. I understand the “do whatever it takes to be the best” mindset, and I respect those people. Again, I do not agree with it, but I do understand why and do not judge because of it.

Steroids Limit You

Still, one quote that always comes to mind whenever I think of people using steroids was said by Dave Tate of EliteFTS. He said, “If you need to take steroids in high school to get to college, then you will never make it to the NFL. And if you need to take steroids in college to get to the NFL, then you won’t last.” So, it is only after you have become elite on your own that steroids and other drugs can even help you to become world class.

This means you need to accomplish something on your own before you can even earn the right to take steroids or PEDs to become the best at something. If you take them too soon, then you are simply limiting yourself, because you can never go back. If you take them even once, you will likely never reach that same strength level again without them again.

So be wise and accomplish something first!

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

If You’re Thinking About Taking PEDs

If you ever were thinking of taking steroids or PEDs, you absolutely MUST consult with your doctor first. There is nothing in the law that says you can’t talk about them. So, just like any other drug, you need to talk to a doctor first so that your health can be monitored.

There is A LOT people don’t know about steroids without first-hand experience, and unfortunately, some of those people learned with their lives. So don’t be that person. Be smart and just ask so you understand all the risks and know what to do if something goes wrong. Who knows, they may even write you a prescription!

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

For me

My thoughts on the use of Anabolic Steroids and PEDs is simple…I understand why people use them, but they are not for me. In fact, it is the same feeling I have towards the use of most supplements. I do not want them, nor do I feel that I need them to reach my goals

I did not get into Powerlifting to become the greatest powerlifter ever because to do that I would need to dedicate my life to the sport and do whatever it takes to be the best. That includes the use of performance enhancing drugs and that is a line I am not willing to cross.

I got into Powerlifting with my own goals in mind, but there are other things I life I want to do more. Powerlifting is just a passion for me, but not the reason I get up in the morning. So I do it for fun and love helping others join the sport as well. 

Another reason is, being natural is cool to me. I’ve always loved to see what people can do without the use of any “assistance” in the form of drugs or “this great new supplement at GNC”. Natural RAW Powerlifting is cool to me. That is why I like so that is what I pursue.

So to put it clearly, on the subject of Anabolic Steroids and PEDs, I never have and never will use them, but I do not judge those that do.

Leave your comments on the subject below!

My Complete Supplement List

  • 100% Whey Protein Powder – I get the cheap stuff and only use it for creamer in my coffee with almond milk or at night when I need a chocolate fix. So basically, I like the taste, but don’t use it as a meal.
  • Multivitamin – I eat a balanced diet, but I still think it’s a good idea to have a base of vitamins and minerals.
  • Fish Oil – I take it on and off for my heart health. 
  • Creatine – I had half a serving by accident one time, and got mad when I found it was in the protein powder I bought. It is not a PED by any means, but just not what I wanted without knowing it.
  • Coffee – Who doesn’t love coffee?!

That’s it! I have never had anything else to my knowledge and never want too. I am not against other supplements, they are just not for me.

Author – Ryan J. Mathias