A question I get asked all the time.
Is a 3 day workout routine enough for real results?
Well this all depends on your health goals and physique goals.
Strength is strength. Cardio is cardio. My advice is don’t mix, keep them separate, and use cardio sparingly on a diet or if your primary goal is strength and muscle gain.
If your primary goal is conditioning then by all means keep the volume high with low weight or feel free to run tell your heart desires.
But if we’re being 100% honest here, I believe most people want to look good naked and Aesthetic!
If your goal is really about getting Lean and fit while keeping your muscle, I highly suggest limiting high intensity cardio on a diet.
A calorie deficit is a recovery deficit. Avoid deficit spending.
The same philosophy applies to building lean Muscle, limiting your cardio is key.
When your diet is collaborated just right in an enjoyable way and applied consistently for your goals at the given time, cardio is needed very little to non at all.
Building an Ideal Physique with a 3 day Workout Routine
Lets talk about what defines an Ideal Physique.
For men, we’re talking about low body fat levels with balanced muscle development.
True will programs is perfect for developing this look, when you work on ideal body proportions you will look Aesthetic as a Greek Statue.
For woman its low body fat levels with a focus on the hips to waist ratio, giving her the famous hour glass shape.
This combined with a slim-fit physique will be the perfect combination for a powerful feminine look.
Athena Sculpting for women is great for building these exact body ratios.
Achieving this ideal look requires the same thing for both male and female to start off.
This is low body fat levels.
Achieving low body fat levels is all about being in a calorie deficit , this is focused around nutrition.
Utilizing Intermittent fasting with 2 meals a day makes getting to lower body fats easy.
Developing well proportioned muscles is all about building strength in key muscle groups.
This is applied through a structured program with the use of progressive overload, focused on ideal body proportions.
When you want to grow your muscles you need to be in a calorie surplus, this is again focused around nutrition.
Intermittent fasting makes muscle growth a breeze, eating just 2 times a day allows for Delicious satisfying and flexible meals.
I want to clarify to people exactly what is going on and why a 3 day workout routine works amazingly and can allow for an enjoyable lifestyle!
The 3 day workout Routine Utilized with Strength
Ones physique is rarely going to be sub-par when strength levels are high.
So How can you tell if your strength levels are adequate?
Ultimately, it comes down to your results and whether your progress is reasonable and relative to the time you put in.
Relative strength is without a doubt the best measure of progress and the level of your body.
For example: someone who can meet these strength standard (typically 2-3 years of consistent training )are going to be pleased with their physique results:
- Bench press: body weight x 1.5
- Chin-ups or pull-ups: body weight x 1.5 or 15 reps with body weight.
- Squat: body weight x 2
- Deadlift: body weight x 2.5
If you obtained these strength levels in consistent 2-3 years of training, give yourself a big ups!
If you didn’t I am sorry to inform you but your strength is inadequate relative to the time put in.
This isn’t the end of the world and you shouldn’t freak out!
Chances are your current routine is not balanced according for strength and maximum muscle development.
This is something we can always change!
Based on knowing ones height, weight , and strength you can typically get an idea on their body composition.
Our bodies are a byproduct of our relative strength levels.
Why is this important when it comes to a 3 day workout routine in the gym?
It comes down to setting goals, progress ,and simplifying.
You see when building strength and muscle is the main goal, we need proper time to recover.
This isn’t true if you’re going to the gym and mindlessly go through the motions.
Yes it might feel like you’re working out hard and hell maybe you’re. But how do your really know if you’re not setting goals?
You see when you go to the gym with the mindset of having to beat what you lifted last week you’re mentally pumped.
In order to continually progress in strength and hit new personal records , you have to be lifting with high intensity.
There is not going to be time to play catch up with a gym bro.
When you focus on what matters and lift with the intentions of lifting heavier and heavier, trying to catch your breath is all you will be doing.
Over Complicated Routines are Everywhere
When you lift weights too often and work on too many exercises during your workout, progress becomes a problem.
In other words, it becomes more difficult to make strength gains.
This comes from mixing too much conditioning training with strength training, this is counter productive.
Our central nervous system needs about 48 hrs to recover completely.
This might not be true if your main focus is light machine and isolation work.
But when you’re dead-lifting 400 lbs for 6 to 8 reps, weighing in at 175lbs you better believe you need those recovery hrs!
There is no need for the guy dead lifting to over complicate his workout with a ton of back isolation’s.
If you are doing too much in the gym, it will be impossible to maintain a high level of intensity and effort on every set.
So lets be Real. The only way to to keep beating your personal records week after week is with a high level of intensity and energy!
Doing all of these counter productive parts such as too many isolation movements, only gets in the way of building solid muscle.
Instead make your core focus on lifting heavy, 6-10 rep range on just a few compound lifts (ex. incline bench press or front squats)
Your goal should be to recruit the actual muscle fibers, known as myofibrillar hypertrophy.
Lifting anything higher than the 8-12 rep range is only going to hinder the strength building processes.
When you lift heavy 3 days a week, when you pass personal records 3 days a week, when you train what matters 3 days a week, a 3 day workout routine is all you need to build an amazing body!
But it’s not Challenging!
When I have clients transition from 5 to 6 days to 3 days a week in the gym their immediate response is “it’s too easy.”
Most have a hard time fathoming going to the gym less often and on top of that focusing on just a few key lifts, for a short workout.
Firstly never judge a workout by how difficult it is.
Secondly let time determine this , when you’re trying to hit new personal records 4 to 6 months in then see if its still easy!
Never do I have anyone at that point in the game tell me its to easy. More like, “I’m pumped to try and hit my new personal record, even if it kills me!”
Thirdly you judge a workout based on how effective it is at improving your lifts.
It’s simple, are you getting stronger week to week, are you adding plates to the bar? If that’s the case, then you’re not screwing around.
Too often I see the same guys, working themselves to death with the same weight.
This is complete nonsense to me.
Is a 3 day workout routine enough for real results?
When calories are dialed in exactly for muscle growth (without fat) and your Strength goes up in a few compound lifts 3 times a week, true magic happens!
Its not all about just hitting the gym 3 days a week.
Its about following a enjoyable and sustainable plan outside the gym just as much as inside the gym!
This is why I created The True Will Programs, they’re designed for building Ideal Body Portions while living a great lifestyle!
They provide efficient workout routines, centered around building strength with a core of key lifts, designed for an ideal physique!
Its about following a routine in and out of the gym.
This is where my actual programs differ from my articles.
I explain is depth the core principals for maximizing muscle growth and how to set up your calories sweet spots for fat loss and lean muscle development.
Its about taking advantage of training principals and learning to use them effectively to squeeze the most muscle development.
1. Reverse Pyramid Training
2. High Volume Targeted Training
Your workouts may be short but are going to be extremely exhausting and grind you down.
Each set is important , which means each set and rep will take your full attention and focus!
Every lift has a goal and a purpose for the following week to continually motivate and push yourself for new goals!
Have a goal for how much you want to lift and enter the gym, knowing you can lift the amount of weight.
Do this each and every week with your routine and your body will surpass others around you.
A life outside the gym
When you’re lifting heavy on a 3 day workout routine you’re building solid real muscle, not the kind you’re just pumping up at the gym.
Lifting heavy with a low to moderate volume provides the muscles with enough growth and density, lasting well outside the gym!
Your muscle development is here to stay, without the fear of losing gains away from the gym, like on a vacation.
This is great for people with busy lifestyles , you retain your hard earned muscle, you live your life, all while keeping a great physique.
And during this whole time you’re eating great meals out side the gym and getting stronger than ever!
When you cut calories for fat loss you will keep all your muscle without the fear of over training.
Not only that , when reducing calories you can still get stronger with a 3 day workout routine!
This is all due to well balanced efficient strength building routine.
Life without a 3 day workout routine
You see when people rely on high volume light training , their bodies depend on it.
Some call it chasing the pump or feeling the burn.
Sure they look great as long as they’re in the gym, keeping their muscles pumped.
The problem is when they take time off from the gym their muscles can appear more flat or soft.
Another problem is when calorie restriction for fat loss comes into play.
A calorie defect will be put into place without a balanced routine to go with it.
This can cause early fatigue , extreme hunger cravings and make dieting miserable!
Most often you will see these guys working day in and day out with the same weights.
This is because they have hit a strength plateau.
Without the core of their routine being focused around building strength they will max out their potential for new muscle development sooner or later.
This only leave individuals frustrated and confused.
Transitioning to a 3 day workout routine
This is where many people have trouble mentally.
The idea that this many rest days without losing your gains start to bore into their thoughts.
Stop stressing and start living!
Take the time off to find new activities in your life , just because its a rest day doesn’t mean you can’t do activities.
Join an sports team, pick up a kick boxing or boxing class, take walks, or read new books!
This is the main point of a 3 day workout routine, living a lifestyle you love: while building an Ideal Physique!
Eat large , Lift Large, Live life out side the gym!
People will assume you have god like genetics!
Reality is you have a well structured plan, simplified around building incredible strength on a few keys lifts, with a diet that allows flexibility and long term sustainability!
Training 5 to 6 days a week causes people to burn out easily.
The 3 day routine makes people overly excited about going to the gym and beating a new personal record.
Its physiologically rewarding, mentally motivating , and physically demanding for real results.
You can become a better person in all aspects of life while allowing the gym to enhance everything else!