This is a simple beginners full-body, bodybuilding routine originally created by AllPro. In this full body beginner workout you will complete three workouts per week on non-consecutive days. For example- Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. This three day workout routine was designed to facilitate hypertrophy and strength through linear periodization. Rep counts will be increased every week for five weeks and then weight will be increased and reps will be decreased in order to work back up to higher reps. This program does require that you know your one rep max in order to start, however, if you do not know it, you can find it here.
3-Day Full Body Workout Program Overview:
- 5 week cycles
- 3 full body workout sessions per week
- Progression is weekly through increased reps
- Week one- 8 reps, week two- 9 reps, and so on
- Movements are barbell squat, barbell bench press, barbell bent over row, barbell overhead press, stiff leg deadlift, barbell curl, and calf raises
3-Day Full Body Workout Routine Spreadsheet
Workout Program Cardio
You may have noticed that this program does not include any cardio. That is mainly because this program does not require cardio. However, if you would like to add some in your best bet is going to be adding in no more than two 30 minute cardio sessions per week. I would recommend adding them in on training days following the workout. Any more cardio than that may reduce your ability to see progress by burning too many calories or by overworking muscle groups to the point that they are tough to progress on.
Full Body Workout Program Nutrition
This 3 day workout program will be hitting every muscle group each time you train. This can be very taxing if you aren’t getting the right nutrition. To add muscle mass and avoid fatigue you need to be keeping your body in a caloric surplus. If you are unsure how many calories you need you can use this calorie calculator. When a rest day comes up make sure you are still eating in a surplus, otherwise your body will not be getting the right weekly nutrition it needs to recover and grow.
Shoot for 3 meals and 3 snacks per day. The meals should be protein and carb heavy with greens for micronutrients. The snacks should be protein heavy. Your goal should be around 1.2 grams of protein per pound of lean bodyweight. I can’t tell you exact amounts as I don’t know your nutritional needs but here is an example:
Meal one- Eggs, whole wheat toast, fruit or jelly
Snack one- Mixed berries, spinach, peanut butter, scoop of protein
Meal two- Ground turkey, rice, asparagus
Snack two- Whole wheat peanut butter and jelly sandwich, milk
Meal three- Steak, potatoes, veggies
Snack three- Peanut butter or mixed nuts, scoop of protein
Full Body Workout Program Supplementation
Supplements are not required for this program (or any program) as they are meant to fill nutritional gaps. I don’t mean you shouldn’t take them as they do help, I just mean they are not a requirement. There are a few that will help you recover and grow from training each muscle group in a 3 day workout program. They are as follows:
Multivitamin and Digestive Enzymes– Meant to pick up the slack when the food we ingest falls short on the essential nutrients that our body requires (i.e. calcium, potassium, Vitamin B12, etc). They will help prevent deficiencies that majority of our society suffers from. These deficiencies can lead to chronic and negative health and well-being conditions. Your body will sweat out important nutrients during intense physical activity. Ensure you hit your daily values for vitamins to feel better and live healthier.
Protein Powder– Meant to help hit protein goals when you are unable to do so with diet alone.
Creatine– It increases protein synthesis which is essential for building lean muscle mass. The more efficient your body is at creating protein synthesis, the faster you can produce muscle tissue. Creatine improves your body’s ability to produce Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP), which is a raw source of energy for your body. This allows you to push your muscles to new limits. At the same time, Creatine pulls water from the body into the muscles giving them a fuller look and keeping them hydrated, leading towards improved performance in the gym.
Glutamine– one of the most abundant amino acids found in the body. It is a staple in anybody’s supplement regiment to improve muscle growth and recovery. High Intensity workout sessions will drain your body of Glutamine. It is important to restore those levels as quickly as possible. Doing so will help put on additional lean muscle (through protein synthesis) and reduce muscle wasting and deterioration. Glutamine also plays an important role in immune function, protein metabolism, and intestinal health.
Testosterone Support– Developed to support the body’s natural (endogenous) production of total testosterone all the way up to high/normal levels, but work in a way that is safe and non-inhibitory. Supports weight management and healthier bone structures while reducing cortisol levels leading to less stress.
Full Body Beginner Workout Program Notes
You will be doing 2 warmup sets followed by 2 working sets for the main lifts- barbell squat, barbell bench press, and barbell rows. For the remaining lifts you will be doing 1-2 sets. It may not seem like much, but unlike most workout routines, you are training every muscle group three times per week. It is important to take a rest day in between each workout for this reason.
The workout routine should be followed in the order it is shown on the spreadsheet as this delivers the best results. You don’t want to not have enough energy to squat or exhaust the wrong muscle group prior training your main lifts.
You will gain strength and build muscle with this routine by increasing training volume and weight over time. However, you also need to support your workout routines with the right rest and nutrition to grow. To build muscle you must be taking a rest day when the program says to, getting enough sleep, and getting the right nutrition to fuel your body. You may feel as though the weights are too light when starting this program, don’t increase them mid cycle as you are not maxing out during this program. You need to be able to train every muscle group without needing an additional rest day before training those muscle groups again. Pushing it too hard will make that difficult.
If you have never lifted before, although this is a beginner workout program, there are better options available for faster progress. The Stronglifts program has a similar design as it has a 3 day workout per week setup that also trains about every muscle group each workout day. It also has a rest day between every workout, however you increase the weight every day that you train, taking advantage of newbie gains.
Addressing Lagging Muscle Groups
You may have noticed that there are no direct triceps exercises in this program. That muscle group is left out of direct work by design as the barbell bench press and they overheard press both hit triceps fairly hard. If you exhaust triceps with direct work you may not be able to hit the other muscle groups correctly after just one rest day.
It is important that you do not add in additional exercises to this program as every muscle group will be getting hit pretty hard. The program will not deliver the same results if you start targeting muscle groups that are already being hit and exhausting them too much. If you have muscle groups that require additional assistance work because of a prior or existing injury I would recommend speaking to a qualified trainer rather than following an online routine. The last thing you want to do is injure yourself further.
If you have muscle groups that are falling behind during this training program try adding an additional set to the lifts that hit those muscle groups. For example if your calves are not growing, add in an additional set of calf raises. If your triceps are not growing try adding in an additional set of bench or overhead press. Give it a couple weeks to determine if this negatively affects the other lifts.
The one exception to “don’t add additional exercises” would be ab work. It is not in the program as not everyone requires it. The abs are hit indirectly by any lift that requires bar stabilization. If you do need additional ab work try not to do it on rest days. You don’t want your abs to be too sore to stabilize correctly. Assuming you do need additional ab work, pick something you can add weight to, do 15 reps the first week of the cycle and add 2 reps each week for a total of 25 reps on the last week of the cycle.
Not Sure How to Perform a Lift?
There are tons of great videos online showing correct form. But you can also always ask a trainer at your gym for assistance as most are happy to help. If you aren’t sure where to search for form videos here is a great place to start.
Missed a Lift Day?
If you happen to miss a lift day, treat it as one of your rest days. You still have days left in the week. However, if you have to miss multiple days start the week you are on back over or complete “Day 1” twice that week depending on how many days are left in the week. For example if you only get to train once in one week, start that week again the next training week. If you can get two lifting days in, train “Day 1” twice that week.
What Makes This Workout Routine a “Beginner Workout Routine?”
A beginner workout routine is categorized as a program that can be used by an individual who cannot yet squat twice their bodyweight and bench press 1.5 times their bodyweight for a single repetition. It has nothing to do with the amount of time that an individual has been training. It has everything to do with the amount of weight that is considered beginner strength. As long as your lifts are noticeable below this threshold you will see great benefit from this routine. If you are able to move the weight listed above this probably isn’t for you. It would be best to find a program designed for someone of your skill level.