Muscle building – 12 Weeks

There are numerous methods and approaches to building muscle mass successfully. The basics of both workouts and nutrition are linked to specific characteristics of human physiology. Only if the workout, nutrition and recovery time are in harmony with one another is it possible to build truly impressive muscles. The training plan below forms the basis for muscle-building.

Training units

Building up muscle mass requires training with heavy weights, where the individual muscle groups are trained on four days (training units) in the week.
The training program shown below is a classic volume training program, which can help you achieve impressive muscle mass if you follow it consistently and adjust your diet accordingly. The training program is based on a four-way split, where all muscle groups are trained and muscle growth is stimulated in general. Training unit A focuses on the chest and biceps; training unit B works on the legs and calves; training unit C strengthens the muscle groups in the back and abs and training unit D works on shoulders and triceps.

Training unit ATraining unit BTraining unit CTraining unit D
Exercise Sets Reps Break
Flat bench presses to warm up 2 20 1 min.
5 sets of flat bench presses 5 8-12 1-2 min.
Incline bench presses 5 10-12 1-2 min.
Butterfly or dumbbell flyes 4 10-15 1-2 min.
Lying dumbbell pullovers 3 12-15 1-2 min.
Dumbbell curls 4 10-12 1-2 min.
Sets of Scott curls 4 10-12 1-2 min.
Sets of dumbbell concentration curls 3 12-15 1-2 min.
Exercise Sets Reps Break
Easy leg extensions to warm up 1-2 20 1 min.
Easy squats to warm up 1-2 20 1 min.
Squats 6 8-12 1-2 min.
Leg presses 4 8-13 1-2 min.
Leg extensions 5 12-15 1-2 min.
Exercise Sets Reps Break
Cable lat pull-downs (front) to warm up 2 20 1 min.
Cable-lat pull-downs (front) 6 10-12 1-2 min.
Cable-lat pull-downs, hands close together 4 10-15 1-2 min.
Bent-over barbell rows 4 10-15 1-2 min.
Alternating sit-ups and leg lifts (superset) 5 5 max. 1-2 min.
Exercise Sets Reps Break
Dumbbell presses to warm up 2 20-25 1 min.
Dumbbell presses 6 8-12 1-2 min.
Lateral raises 5 12-15 1-2 min.
Bent-over lateral raises 4 12-15 1-2 min.
Cable triceps extensions 5 10-15 1-2 min.
French presses 3 10-15 1-2 min.
Triceps push-downs (underhand grip), singles 3 10-15 1-2 min.

More tips – nutrition

During the bulk-up phase, the basic diet is based on two simple rules:

1. Consume more calories than you burn. Building muscle requires energy. Similarly, the body can only build up tissue if you provide it with more calories than it needs to cover your energy requirements. Unfortunately, muscle mass does not increase in proportion to calorie intake. If you consume far more calories than you need, only your fat reserves will increase. An excess of around 500 kcal per day has been shown to be sufficient to build muscle mass without storing too much fat.

2. Ensure you get sufficient, regular sources of protein.

In order to build muscle mass, the body must be provided with sufficient, regular amounts of protein. In general, 2 g protein per kilo of body weight is sufficient. The body is not able to store protein. Consequently, you should eat a protein-rich meal every two to three hours.