If you want to sculpt large muscles, then following a bodybuilding workout schedule is important. These workouts are designed to grow your muscles as quickly and as largely as possible. Bodybuilding isn’t just about the body either. As you’ll find out through bodybuilding, your mind becomes healthier too. Weight training can relieve depression, anxiety, and stress while improving confidence and self-esteem. The following list of top bodybuilding workouts is ranked by which delivers the greatest muscle gains.

The Best Bodybuilding Workouts to Try

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1. The 5 x 5 Program

A 5 x 5 bodybuilding program is intended for intermediate to advanced weight lifters. If you’ve been lifting weights for the past 3-6 months or longer, then you are most likely able to do the 5 x 5 program. This bodybuilding workout plan is most popular among those who want a high amount of both strength and muscle mass.

The bodybuilding workouts in the 5 x 5 program are divided into three main exercises that target main muscle groups in both the upper and lower body at the same time. And these exercises are executed at five sets of five reps. Stimulating your muscle fibers frequently as you do in the 5 x 5 program boosts testosterone, leading to greater muscle mass growth.

Bodybuilding’s Example 5 x 5 Workout Plan:

Change between routine I and routine II three times per week with at least one day off in between sessions.

Routine I

Barbell squats.
Barbell bench press with a medium grip.
Bent over barbell row.
Pullups.
Side lateral raise.
Sit-ups.

Routine II

Front barbell squats.
Seated barbell military press.
Barbell deadlift.
Barbell curl.
Seated triceps press.

2. German Volume Training

German Volume Training is a fast way to gain muscle, but it doesn’t maximize strength gains because the rep count is too high. Another drawback is it’s not very effective or feasible for those who are extremely active in sports or cardio. It would be too difficult on your body to do volume training on top of sports training or long cardio workouts. German Volume Training isn’t for beginners either.

This workout plan works by targeting two main muscle groups each day three days a week. You must alternate to allow your muscles sufficient recovery time. You’ll perform ten sets of 10 reps of a compound exercise for each muscle group. Some people choose to do isolation exercises of 2-3 sets of 10-15 reps afterward, but that is optional.

Bodybuilding’s Example German Volume Training Plan:

Routine I

Dumbbell bench press.
Bent over barbell row.
Butterfly.
Incline bench pull.

Routine II

Barbell squats.
Standing calf raises.
Seated calf raises.
Hanging leg raises.

Routine III

Barbell shoulder press.
Dumbbell bicep curl.
Cable lying triceps extension.

3. Upper/Lower Split Training

Perfect for beginners, the upper/lower split training bodybuilding workout plan targets each muscle group twice per week. It is performed on a two on, one off schedule. If you’re intermediate or advanced, you can make upper/lower split training more intense by increasing the reps and choosing more difficult exercises.

Upper/lower split training is a very versatile bodybuilding program. You can swap out the exercises for many different equivalents. A week of upper/lower split training usually looks like the routine I, routine II, rest day, routine III, routine IV, rest day, rest day. It is common to do two sets of 10 reps, but you can tweak it slightly.

Bodybuilding’s Example Upper/Lower Split Training

Routine I

Barbell squats.
Dumbbell lunges.
Leg extensions.
Lying leg curls.
Standing calf raises.
Hanging leg raises.

Routine II

Dumbbell bench press.
Bent over barbell row.
Standing military press.
Reverse flyes.
Side lateral raise.
Bench dips.

Routine III

Barbell deadlift.
Dumbbell step ups.
Leg press.
Seated calf raises.
Standing calf raises.
Exercise ball crunch.

Routine IV

Barbell incline bench press with a medium grip.
Wide-grip lat pulldown.
Seated cable rows.
Dumbbell bicep curls.
Incline dumbbell curls.
Pushups.

4. 3 Day Full Body Routine

One of the most common bodybuilding workouts among beginner lifters is the 3 Day Full Body Routine. As the name suggests, you’ll work out three days per week. A 3 Day full body routine week looks like the routine I, rest day, routine II, rest day, routine III, rest day, rest day. You might worry that this isn’t effective or fast for building muscle, but beginners actually experience more gains when they train less instead of training more. You can progress to greater frequency and volume as you become stronger. It is common to do four sets of eight reps or five sets of five reps.

Bodybuilding’s Example 3 Day Full Body Routine

Routine I

Barbell squats.
Barbell bench press with a medium grip.
Pullups.
Standing military press.
Barbell curls.
Ab roller.

Routine II

Barbell deadlift.
Bent over barbell row.
Incline dumbbell press.
Side lateral raise.
Standing dumbbell triceps extension.
Hammer curls.

Routine III

Dumbbell lunges.
Triceps dips.
Chin-ups.
Double kettlebell push press.
Seated calf raise.
Plate twists.

Bodybuilding Workouts – Which Should You Choose?

First and foremost, the type of body building workout you choose depends on your current fitness level. Are you a beginner, intermediate, or an advanced weight lifter? Beginners, those who have been strength training for less than six months, should choose either a three-day full body workout plan or upper/lower split training.

Intermediate and advanced weight lifters could do upper/lower split training too but with more challenging exercises and heavier weights. Once you’re past the beginner phase, one of the quickest ways to pack on muscle is German Volume Training. Just remember that it’s too intense to be done with sports training and extensive cardio.

Bottom Line

The bodybuilding workouts listed above are some of the top routines you can use to put on muscle. Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced bodybuilder, one of these workout plans will work for you. Advanced bodybuilders can swap out the exercises for more advanced exercises. Following one of these workout plans will help you grow muscles as fast as possible while staying safe.

Which of these bodybuilding workouts do you like the most? Do you have another top bodybuilding workout to add to the list?

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