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The main idea behind this program is to allow the body to adapt to heavier weight and at the same time increase endurance and muscle size through volume.

I started this program out on the old Greek tale of Milo and his calf. The essence or beginnings of Progressive Strength training. The main idea behind this program is to allow the body to adapt to heavier weight and at the same time increase endurance and muscle size through volume.
It is a proven fact that small gains lead to more strength and more muscle mass. More Muscle mass is what we want. More muscle means faster fat burning, more stable hormone levels, and basically better fitness all around. This program can be used by anyone, from the most advance trainees to beginners. It especially works well for beginners because it allows them to start out at levels they can work with and gradually become stronger, and ultimately, this is what we want, right?

"This program can be used by anyone, from the most advance trainees to beginners."

This is not a program where you have to have several years of training to be able to use it. It is a "now" program and does not give you the expectation of astronomical gains in a couple of weeks. It lets you go at your pace and increase your fitness levels with small goals which is better and more healthier for the individual. It allows you to stay away from injuries because it requires you adapt to the weight in which you are doing. When you are ready to challenge yourself you go up in small increments until you reach your next goal. It is nothing new or revolutionary it is just common sense training that allows you to "adapt" and "overcome" your limitations.

This program can be used by women just as well as men using the same exercises. Because lets face it, muscle is muscle, and gaining lean muscle is the goal, right? Feeling better about your fitness is the goal, right?

So here is the basic Template to use:

Use compound movements for primary exercises. Use secondary and third movement to increase volume in the training program (This will be explained in the template). For basic Compound movements, pick out two of your favorite movements and use them each month. Example: Squats for the first month and leg press for the second month.

First week will be max effort week where 4 sets per exercise will be used and reps stay in the 10-12 range. Using the pyramid method of finding what reps you can do to good failure in that rep range.

Second week will be max reps week. where 4 sets per exercise will be used and reps will be in the 15-20 range. This should be used with trial and error because you want 20 reps to be your goal on all sets, so use weight accordingly to your fitness level. This week is based off of a 4 day a week split, for the basic program and extra day can be added for weak body part, or if you want to throw in an extra arm day, but the basic program is a 4 day split. A 2 or 3 day split can be used. If used, use it as a upper body day rather than a lower body day.

Warming up is essential to any program so make sure you are properly warmed up before starting either. Do 10 minutes of low intensity cardio or light Calisthenics. Stretching is a must, also. After workout is the best time to do this, but in between sets works well to. Just make sure to stretch. This reduces the chance for injuries and allows muscles to grow. I'm not even going to go into the importance of stretching until later articles.

It is essential to control the weight while you are doing it. Jerky movements lead to injuries, plain and simple. Control the weight and breath in and out. Slower movements cause the muscle to work harder and ultimately increase endurance in the muscle, in other words, once you get used to this you will get stronger.

There are two different weeks that will be used:

Max effort week - all 10-12 reps being used to one rep shy of failure in that rep range. This is your strength week to destroy the muscle to make it work hard with a little heavier weight. Go up in 5 pound incraments each time you do this week, on all compound lifts.

Max reps week: This is a high volume week. The reps are in then 15-20 range, try to stay in the 20 range. The idea here is to flush the body part with as much blood as possible creating an incredible pump effect. The pump is getting blood to the muscle saturating it with nutrients and helping build endurance and healing it in the process.


Month 1

Monday - Legs
Squats
4 Sets of 10-12
Hack Squats
4 Sets of 10-12
Leg Extensions
4 Sets of 10-12
Leg Curls
4 Sets of 10-12
Calve Raises
2 Sets of 50 Reps
Notes:
- If you can't do hack squats do front squats or any other squatting technique
- If you have lagging calves add in a specific day to train calves or do a couple sets of them everyday. Calves can be trained more than other bodyparts.


Tuesday - Chest & Triceps
Bench Press
4 Sets of 10-12
Incline Dumbbell Press
4 Sets of 10-12
Machine Chest Press
4 Sets of 10-12
Cable Flys
3 Sets of 10-12
Cable Tricep Pushdowns
5-6 Sets of 10-12
Notes:
- The reason only one exercise is done for triceps is because you have done pressing movements for chest and have stimulated the triceps in this pressing movements the Pushdowns for this one exercise is to isolate them.


Wednesday - OFF
Notes:
- Can be used as a make up day for other days you can't train if you miss or if later in the week you can't train you can train that body part you are going to miss on this day.


Thursday - Back & Biceps
Lat Pulls
4 Sets of 10-12
Dead Lift/Rack Deads
3 Sets of 10-12
Hammer Strength High Pulls/T Bar Rows
4 Sets of 10-12
Low Cable Rows Wide Grip
4 Sets of 10-12
Close Grip Lat Pulls
3 Sets of 10-12
Drag Curls
5 Sets of 10-12
Notes:
- Biceps like Triceps using same concept because doing back movements you are stimulating your biceps in these movements.


Friday - Shoulders
Barbell or Machine Shrugs
4 Sets of 10-12
Side Lateral Raises
4 Sets of 10-12
Dumbbell Front Raises
4 Sets of 10-12
Reverse Pec Deck/Dumbbells
4 Sets of 10-12
Machine Shoulder Press/Smith Machine
3 Sets of 10-12
Notes:
- With Dumbbell Front Raises - come all the way up from waist to a pressing position. using a neutral hand position. This uses the front delts better in this movement
- With Side Lateral Raises - use partial movements not all the way up level with the shoulders. All the way up brings the traps in the movement and you are wanting to stimulate the Delts in this movement.
- I have Presses at the end of this day for a reason. Most people don't warm up enough and by pre exhausting the shoulders and pressing at the end of your workout you still have strength left but your shoulders and delts are properly warmed up by this time. You will find you can actually press more later on doing this. Instead of starting out your workout with them it is in my opinion and experience that it is better and keeps you from injury.

Monday - Legs
Squats
4 Sets of 15-20
Hack Squats
4 Sets of 15-20
Leg Extensions
4 Sets of 15-20
Leg Curls
4 Sets of 15-20
Calve Raises
2 Sets of 50-60 Reps
Notes:
- If you can't do hack squats do front squats or any other squatting technique
- If you have lagging calves add in a specific day to train calves or do a couple sets of them everyday. Calves can be trained more than other bodyparts.


Tuesday - Chest & Triceps
Bench Press
4 Sets of 15-20
Incline Dumbbell Press
4 Sets of 15-20
Machine Chest Press
4 Sets of 15-20
Cable Flys
3 Sets of 15-20
Cable Tricep Pushdowns
5-6 Sets of 15-20
Notes:
- The reason only one exercise is done for triceps is because you have done pressing movements for chest and have stimulated the triceps in this pressing movements the Pushdowns for this one exercise is to isolate them.


Wednesday - OFF
Notes:
- Can be used as a make up day for other days you can't train if you miss or if later in the week you can't train you can train that body part you are going to miss on this day.


Thursday - Back & Biceps
Lat Pulls
4 Sets of 15-20
Dead Lift/Rack Deads
3 Sets of 15-20
Hammer Strength High Pulls/T Bar Rows
4 Sets of 15-20
Low Cable Rows Wide Grip
4 Sets of 15-20
Close Grip Lat Pulls
3 Sets of 15-20
Hammer Curls
5-6 Sets of 15-20
Notes:
- Biceps like Triceps using same concept because doing back movements you are stimulating your biceps in these movements.


Friday - Shoulders
Barbell or Machine Shrugs
4 Sets of 15-20
Lateral Raises
4 Sets of 15-20
Dumbbell Front Raises
4 Sets of 15-20
Reverse Pec Deck/Dumbbells
4 Sets of 15-20
Machine Shoulder Press/Smith Machine
3 Sets of 15-20
Notes:
- With Dumbbell Front Raises - come all the way up from waist to a pressing position. using a neutral hand position. This uses the front delts better in this movement
- With Side Lateral Raises - use partial movements not all the way up level with the shoulders. All the way up brings the traps in the movement and you are wanting to stimulate the Delts in this movement.
- I have Presses at the end of this day for a reason. Most people don't warm up enough and by pre exhausting the shoulders and pressing at the end of your workout you still have strength left but your shoulders and delts are properly warmed up by this time. You will find you can actually press more later on doing this. Instead of starting out your workout with them it is in my opinion and experience that it is better and keeps you from injury.

Week 3 - Repeat week 1
Week 4 - Repeat week 2
Each week try and go up 5 pounds in weight, if you can.

Month 2

Use the same sets and reps and the first month just use a different exercise.
Examples:
Monday:
Hack squat first
Leg press second
Leg extensions or lunges
Leg curl seated or romanian dead lift or stiff leg dead lift

Tuesday:
Incline barbell press
Hammer strength low press or decline press
DB flys
Cable flys
Triceps pushdowns

Wednesday: Off or make-up day.

Thursday:
Assisted pull-ups or rack chins
Rack dead lift
Barbell row or low cable row close grip
Lat pulls wide grip or shoulder scapula pulls
Biceps
Dumbbell alternating curls

Friday:
DB shrugs
Cable lateral raises
Barbell or plate front raises
bent over delt raises
DB shoulder press or arnold press

Week 2 : Max reps week
Same exercises as above, just max reps.

Final note:

In any of the exercises listed above you can do what you feel is necessary to your fitness goals. You don't have to use what I've put up there, but Using these basic compound movements should be done. In doing dead lifts or Rack dead lifts, use caution if you have back problems. They are great for building massive and strong backs, but if you have back problems, they can limit you in your other areas.

Also note on cardio, I do not recommend doing long duration cardio. I recommend HITT cardio either on a spin bike, or elliptical if you can do it that way. If you are trying to cut, loose fat or get shredded, I recommend doing cardio after your training sessions...no longer than 20 minutes. But use The HITT style, Tabata or anything thats going to raise your heart rate to the anaerobic level. You can even go outside if you can and do sprints.

I will not go into diet, but if you want a recommendation as to what has helped me the past year, I would go with carb backloading or carb night. Links are below:
http://carbnite.com/
http://www.carbbackloading.com/

Good luck in your quest to become the person you want to be.


Meet The Author...

Kevin L. McEntyre

Fitness Writer For IllPumpYouUp.com

My name is Kevin McEntyre from Birmingham Alabama. I've been lifting weights since I was 10 years old. Starting off with no more....View Full Profile











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