5 Day Workout Routine for Men

5 Day Workout Routine for Men

Staff Writer
11 minute read

5-day workout routine for men

So you decided to pick up strength training to boost your health and fitness goals, build muscle and become the strongest version of yourself. You’ve made the right decision and took huge steps to become your best self. 

But if you feel a bit confused about how to start and what routine to follow amongst the sea of fitness influencers and available trending new routines, we got you covered with our best 5 day routine for men to build strength and muscle as fast as possible without spending hours in the gym.

What makes a great routine

In order to get the most bang for your buck with the routine you choose you have to keep a few guidelines in mind to make sure you’re following the best one for your goals. Make sure your training routine checks all of these boxes:

  • It makes you progressively stronger: Probably the most important point of focus for a successful strength and muscle building routine is that it includes the concept of progressive overload, which means that it constantly makes you stronger by allowing you to lift more weight or perform more reps almost every workout, or at least every week.

  • It includes the best exercises for your goals without wasting time: A sound weightlifting routine will prioritize compound movements that use large muscle groups to move the most weight.Think of squats, deadlifts, bench presses and overhead presses, pull ups and chin ups. IT will also include isolation exercises for lagging body parts but those won't be the focal point.

  • It has enough volume and frequency to make you bigger and stronger: This means that the number of sets you perform for the main muscle groups will fall in the 10-20 per week which is an appropriate amount to get the best results without overtaxing or making you prone to injury, which will be distributed throughout the week to allow enough rest but also enough stimulus . It will also include rep ranges that promote the most strength gains and muscle growth. (4-6, 6-10 and 8-12).

  • It allows enough rest: The frequency that you train each major muscle group will allow at least one or two days in between training sessions of said group to allow for recovery of the muscles, glycogen stores, rebuilding of the muscles and balancing pH in the muscle, all of these will help those muscles grow stronger and be ready for another session. As long as you get enough volume (sets performed in a week) your frequency can go from once every week to multiple times a week.

  • It should keep you safe and make you better: By getting the right volume, the right intensity and enough rest time, and also by choosing the appropriate exercises and executing them with good form you should be able to train without injuring yourself for months. In fact studies show that weightlifting has one of the lowest injury rates of all training modalities and sports training.

  • It has to be enjoyable and keep you excited to go back to the gym: Even the best training program won't do anything for you if you don’t stay consistent and maintain the routine for at least a few months. So it is important that it is fun and enjoyable enough to keep you engaged and excited to go back to the gym for your next session.

Our recommended 5 day workout routine for men

Here’s our recommended 5 day routine that keeps all of the previous points in mind to make sure you get as strong and gain as much muscle as possible while keeping you safe and engaged every training session.

Each session starts with the biggest compound lift that can help you move the most weight in a rep range that allows for strength gain after almost every session, then it adds more exercises for the same muscle group and some accessory isolation movements to get the best muscle gains possible. The exercise selection favors a lot of work for the upper body to accommodate the preference in shape and look for most men building an impressive V shape and getting enough stimulus for the legs to develop as well.

  • Day 1 pushing: focusing on horizontal pressing that works your chest muscles and your triceps.

    • Barbell bench press: the barbell allows you to move the most weight. Warm up and then perform 3 sets 4 to 6 reps at around 85% of your one rep max. 

    • Incline bench press: can be performed with barbell or dumbbells. 3 sets of  4 to 6 reps at 85% of 1RM

    • Dumbbell bench press: extra work for your chest. 3 sets of 6 to 10 reps at 75% of your 1RM

    • Triceps extension: can be performed on a cable machine or with a dumbbell overhead. 3 sets of 6-10 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

  • Day 2 pulling: focusing on your pulling muscles on the back and in addition train your calves, which is a group often neglected.

    • Barbell deadlift: probably the exercise where you can lift the most weight. Warm up and then perform 3 sets of 4 to 6 reps at around 85% of your one rep max. 

    • One arm dumbbell row: 3 sets of 4 to 6 reps at 85% of 1RM

    • Lat pulldown: on the cable machine with a wide overhand grip. 3 sets of 6 to 10 reps at 75% of your 1RM

    • Calf raises: can be performed on a standing or seated calf raise machine or on the leg press machine. 3 sets of 8-12 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

  • Day 3 shoulders: focusing on vertical pushing overhead and in addition works the muscles of your core.

    • Overhead press: can be performed either sitting or standing up with the barbell or dumbbells. Warm up and then 3 sets of 4 to 6 reps at around 85% of your one rep max. 

    • Side lateral raise: can be performed with dumbbells or the cable machine. 3 sets of 8 to 10 reps at 70% of 1RM

    • Rear delt fly/raise: can be performed with dumbbells or the cable machine. 3 sets of 8 to 10 reps at 70% of 1RM

    • Cable crunch: performed on a cable machine or with resistance bands. 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

  • Day 4 Legs: A day dedicated only to the lower body, don’t be afraid to move heavy weights here while maintaining excellent form.

    • Barbell back squat: the barbell allows you to move the most weight. Warm up and then perform 3 sets 4 to 6 reps at around 85% of your one rep max. 

    • Leg press: 3 sets of  4 to 6 reps at 85% of 1RM

    • Leg curl: 3 sets of 8 to 10 reps at 75% of your 1RM

    • Calf raises: can be performed on a standing or seated calf raise machine or on the leg press machine. 3 sets of 8-12 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

  • Day 5 Arms and Core: Extra work for your biceps, triceps and abs.

    • Close grip bench press: the barbell allows you to move more weight focusing on your triceps but also getting a bit of extra work for your chest. Warm up and then perform 3 sets 4 to 6 reps at around 85% of your one rep max. 

    • Barbell curl: the barbell allows you to move more weight. 3 sets of  4 to 6 reps at 85% of 1RM

    • Triceps extension: can be performed on a cable machine or with a dumbbell overhead. 3 sets of 6-10 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

    • Dumbbell curl: can be performed standing, sitting or even with a cable machine. 3 sets of 6-10 reps at 70% of your 1RM.

    • Leg raise: can be performed hanging from a bar or on a captain’s chair. 3 sets of 8-12 reps at an RPE of 7/10 (rate of perceived exertion) which basically means you could only perform 3 more reps if someone pointed a gun at your head, and no more than that.

How to make progress on this 5 day workout routine for men

If you feel a bit confused of all the numbers in the exercises it is actually quite easy to follow:

  1. A set is one round of the exercise completing the recommended rep range. All exercises suggest performing 3 sets. That means, if the exercise says 3 sets of 4 to 6 reps do 4 reps rest for 2-5 minutes for the heavier sets and 1-2 minutes for lighter exercises then do another round of 4 reps, rest again and the last set.

  2. The rep range indicates the lower and higher end of reps you should perform before adding weight. So basically if the rep range says 4-6, pick a weight that allows you to perform 4 reps (lower end of the rep range) with good form but that is very demanding, do them for all your sets, on your next workout and one rep or two. Once you’re able to do all sets at 6 reps (upper end of the rep range), increase the weight and go back down to the lower end of the rep range.

  3. Make sure that every workout you increase either the reps or the weight on every exercise. But it can never be stressed enough to never sacrifice good form on every lift over more weight or reps, if you’re not able to get to the lower end of the rep range reduce weight slightly.

  4. Repeat this process on every exercise to continue making progress, getting stronger and gaining muscle.

Extra tips to get the best results in record time

Finally here are our final tips to make sure that you get the most of your training program and that you can keep making progress in a safe manner workout after workout and week after week.

  • Remember to warm up appropriately before every training session: Your warm up is very important and non-negotiable, however it doesn't have to take a whole hour or leave you exhausted. Perform some light exercise that raises your body temperature like mild jogging, rope jumping or light calisthenics. Then perform a few sets of the first movement with progressively higher weight but that feel moderate in intensity, for example the first warm up set of 5 to 10 reps with the empty barbel, then 5 reps at 50 % of your working weight and then one more set with 3 to 5 reps at 75% of your working weight.

  • Make sure you are adding weight or reps to almost every workout: like mentioned before, progressive overload is the most important aspect of your workout to make sure you're getting stronger and building more muscle.

  • Focus on great form until the last rep of every set, never compromise form for weight: Never sacrifice good form for lifting more weight or getting more reps, perform every rep of every set with great form. Read that again.

  • Couple it with great nutrition: You need to make sure to get lots of great nutrients, a lot of protein and carbs to fuel your workouts and make sure you recover and grow stronger. If you’re not sure where to start, you can find our amazing articles here or we can make your life easier with our meal plans.

  • Sleep and rest enough: We can’t stress enough how important proper recovery yarn sleeping is, it is probably the most anabolic thing you can do to grow stronger and bigger. Make sure you check out this article to learn more.

  • Make sure to take deload weeks periodically: If you’ve been doing things right, training properly and progressively overloading your muscles you’ll need to step it down a bit after every 6 to 8 weeks of proper training. This however is not a week off, you could repeat the workouts you did the last week but with half the sets and 75% of the weight lifted. This deload week will allow you to prevent injury and overburn and grow even stronger for years to come.

  • If you don’t have that much time you can still make great gains, check out these other routines: There's no doubt this is an amazing routine that will lead to the best results faster than anything else. But if the scheduling or amount of work is a bit hard for you, you still can make great progress and gain from training 4 or even 3 times a week. Check out these articles to find other amazing routines for you to follow.

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