Back-To-Basics Bodybuilding Training

Basic bodybuiliding training principles

1. Your training program must be progressive in one or more of the following areas:

  • Amount of resistance or weight used for a particular set.
  • Number of reps performed with a particular weight.
  • The amount of Time in which a particular series of sets are performed decreased rest time.

2. You must improve in one of the above areas to stimulate the potential for growth:

  • Even with the proper stimulus growth will only occur with proper nutrition, supplementation, rest and recuperation.
  • Proper nutrition and supplementation with an assist from genetics determine HOW MUCH growth.

3. Some indispensable do’s and don’ts:

Keep a workout journal. It can be a spiral notebook or as fancy as you like. Keep track of every training session. Use the star method ★ to track your progress. Every time you use a heavier weight than before on a set, get more reps with a particular weight, or complete a series of sets in less time give yourself a star in your journal. A 10 Star workout means you did an extra rep or used more weight on at least ten sets during your workout. Finish the whole program in record time and you get another star.

  • Use proper form. You don’t get a star if you raise your butt off the bench or have your spotter lifting 50% of the weight while he says, It’s all you.
  • Make sure each exercise is working the correct area. If you’re training back yet getting a pump in your arms – something’s wrong. Loosen your grip and focus on pulling with your back. Use the your hands are hooks philosophy. Conversely if you’re working biceps and your lower back is stiff the next day, that’s a sure sign you’re cheating way too much on your curls.
  • Use a full range of motion on every exercise to develop big, full round muscle bellies. That means squats to parallel or below not modified good mornings. Full-range Leg Presses not lock outs to see how much weight the machine holds. Bent Over Rows should be performed in the traditional manner flat back, torso near 90 degrees, legs bent slightly, pull weight to upper abdomen use traditional or reverse grip but DON’T make it into an inclined thrust pulling the weight to the top of your thighs.
Train 2 days on, 1 day off:
Day1: Legs
Day 2: Chest / Triceps
Day 3: off
Day 4: Shoulders / Biceps / Legs (feeder workout)***
Day 5: Back
Day 6: off
Start over
*** A feeder workout is performed to bring up a lagging body part or promote growth. A feeder workout example for legs would be 2 supersets of 10-15 reps on Leg Extension and Curl with a usable weight. Then 3 sets of 10 Squat or Leg Press with about 85% of your 10RM. This will get blood flowing to the area, facilitating recovery and growth.

Basic Progression Schemes

1. Pyramid Training:
Add weight lower the reps each set.
Set 1: 12 reps with a very easy warm-up weight – not all you can do for 12 reps
Set 2: 10 reps still pretty easy
Set 3: 8 reps use a weight you could get for 9 to 12 here but stop at 8
Set 4: 6 reps use a weight you could get 6 to 8 reps with but stop at 6
Set 5: 4 – 6 reps – a max set. Here’s where you can earn stars in your training journal. Once you reach 6 reps add weight to the final 3 sets (which will earn a star on each of these sets next time) and start back at 4 reps on set #5. Exercises using the Pyramid system are marked with star*.
2. Double Progressive System:
Use the same weight for all sets. Start at the low end of the suggested rep range. Gradually increase the repetitions, usually adding one rep each week until you reach the top number of suggested reps for each set of a particular exercise. Then add weight and start over at the lower end of the rep scheme. Exercises below where you should use the Double Progressive System are marked **.

Back-To-Basic Training Program

Day #1 Legs / Calves
1. Squat* Pyramid 5 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 / 4-6 reps
2. Leg Press** or Hack Squat** 4 x 10 – 16 reps (you may want to increase 2 reps per workout here)
3. (Superset) Leg Extension** 3 x 12-15 reps and Leg Curls** 3 x 10-12 reps
4. Lunge or Straight Leg Dead Lift** 3 x 10-12 reps
5. (Superset) Seated Calf Raise** 5 x 10-12 reps and Free Standing (no weight) Calf Raises** 5 x 25-50 reps
That ends Day #1. There are lots of opportunities to earn stars in your training journal. Don’t be in a big rush to use as much weight as possible in each exercise. Try to leave each workout knowing you can improve in at least one exercise the next.
The training journal is an integral part of this program. Your goal is to make slow and steady progress. Use the star method to track your progress. A 10 Star workout means you did an extra rep or used more weight on at least ten sets during your workout. Finish the whole program in record time and you get another star.
Day #2 Chest, Triceps, Calves
1. Bench Press (pyramid)*
2. Incline DB Press (double progressive)** 3 sets x 6 – 8 reps constant weight. First session do 6 – 6 – 6 and gradually add reps and earn stars until you get to 8 – 8 – 8 then add weight and start back at 6. If you get bored adding reps, reduce rest time between sets to earn additional stars.
3. DB Flyes** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
4. DB Pullovers** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
5. Close Grip Bench Press* (pyramid) 4 x 12 / 10 / 8 / 5 then 7
6. (Superset) Triceps Pushdown** and Dips** 3 x 6 – 12 reps each constant weight no rest between exercises, rest only after both exercises have been performed.
7. Heavy Calf Raises** 4 x 8 / 12
8. Light Calf Raises** or Donkeys** 4 x 15 – 20 reps
Day #3 Off
Day #4 Shoulders / Biceps
1. Military Press* – Pyramid 4 sets x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 – 8 reps
2. DB or Machine Laterals** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
3. DB or Cable Bent Laterals** 3 x 8 – 12 reps
4. Barbell Curl* 4 x 12 / 10 / 8 / 6 / 8
5. Incline DB Curl** 3 x 8 / 10
6. Machine Curl or Preacher Curl** 2 x 8 / 12
Day #5 Back
1. Chins** 4 sets up to 12 reps per set. (If you ever get to 12 reps on all 4 sets, start reducing rest periods or add weight.)
2. Dead Lifts – 3 sets 10 reps (add weight each set but stay at ten reps per set) Concentrate on perfect form and add weight very gradually in 5-lb. increments each week. You can do a compound Deadlift and Shrug movement instead of regular Deadlifts if you wish to stress traps a little more.
3. Bent Rows* or T-Bar Row* 4 sets pyramid 12 / 10 / 8 / 6-8
4. Reverse Grip Front Pulldowns** or 1 Arm DB Row** 3 x 8 / 12
5. Straight Arm Pullovers** 3 x 10 – 12 (lie on a bench length wise keep arms straight)
6. 10 minutes of abs


To get the most from the Back to the Basics Training program you have to make sure that you are getting the protein you need to get the gains you want. This almost always means getting more protein than you are now consuming.

Here are the fundamentals:
 Consume at least 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight daily. Use first class proteins, steak, roast, eggs, lean ground beef, turkey, fish, chicken, cottage cheese and good vegetable sources.
 Ingest 5-7 meals each day. Make sure at least three meals are whole food.
 Protein and high quality supplements make a big difference. There are lots of good proteins, but the best are Muscle Provider and Ultimate Muscle Protein. Muscle Provider is primarily whey hydrolysates and whey isolates. You should take Muscle Provider right after training. Research has shown that whey hydrolysates are absorbed faster than any other protein, since it is already partially broken down. This results in quicker delivery of amino acids needed for muscle repair and recovery. Take 1 or 2 scoops immediately after your workout.
 Supplemental protein drinks between meals should be primarily multi species, this means that the protein comes from a variety of sources, to ensure a high-quality amino acid profile. Ultimate Muscle Protein is best. Ultimate Muscle Protein is 80% slow to medium gut-release and 20% fast gut release. It has a lot of the critical cluster of free-form amino acids (L-Arginine, L-Glutamine and the 3 branched chains). Mix with milk if you have a fast metabolism or water and a little cream if you need to reduce fat.
 One final supplement you should add to your basic muscle building program is Creatine Select. Load 20-30 grams per day for five days, then two servings (10g) per day on training days and one serving (5grams) on off days.

Bev-Solutions 6 training profiles
1. Periodization
2. Hardgainer
3. No Nonsense Basic Bodybuilding Training
4. Pre Contest Training
5. Training for the Figure Athlete
6. Training for the Bikini Athlete

Training Diary PDF download