Weight Training – Bulk or Sculpt?

Weight training – do you want to gain a bit of bulk or do you want to sculpt?  I started with the bulk route and recently switched to the sculpting route.  Both are effective.

BULK
In order to increase muscle mass, you will need to lift heavier weight with less reps.  This means that you want to lift a weight that is at least 70% of your 1RM (one rep max).  One rep max (described below) is the maximum amount of weight you can lift in a single repetition for a given exercise.

Do 12 reps and three sets of each exercise.  The workout is grouped into three days; chest and triceps, back and biceps, and legs and shoulders.  You should incorporate ab workouts into this as well but I will cover that in a different post.

SCULPT
In order to sculpt your muscles, you will need to lift lighter weight with more reps.  This means that you want to lift a weight that is about 50% of your 1RM (one rep max).  One rep max (described below) is the maximum amount of weight you can lift in a single repetition for a given exercise.

Do 20 reps and five sets of each exercise.  The workout is grouped into three days; chest and triceps, back and biceps, and legs and shoulders.  You should incorporate ab workouts into this as well but I will cover that in a different post.

How to find 1RM:
There are calculators out there if you’d like (http://www.timinvermont.com/fitness/orm.htm).  The only way to find your true 1RM is to keep adding weight until you can’t do anymore.  This may take some guess work on your part if you haven’t done a lot of lifting recently.  Warm up with some really light weight, do a set of 8 with 50% 1rm, then rest 2 minutes, do 80% for 2-3 reps, rest 2 minutes, finally the max.

CHEST AND TRICEPS

 Bench Press Incline at 45 degrees  Chest Flys  Low Flys
       
 Tricep Pulldown  Tricep Overhead  Tricep Dip Skull Crusher

BACK AND BICEPS

 Deadlift  Pullups  Seated Row  Lower Back Lift
     
 Bicep Curl  Reverse Curl  Concentrated Curl

LEGS AND SHOULDERS

 Squats  Lunge Squat  Hamstring Curl  Leg Extension
       
 Shoulder Press  Upright Rows  Shoulder Shrugs  Front and Lateral Raise
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