Let’s Talk Details

1. The Plan
2. Your Job
3. Videos


The Plan

Key Exercises

Barbell Back Squat (Key)

Goodmorning (Key)

Barbell incline Bench (Key)

Barbell Bicep Curl (Key)

Barbell Skullcrushers (Key)

Barbell Banded Back Squat (Key)

Barbell Banded Romanian Deadlifts (Key)

Barbell Flat Bench (Key)

Barbell Row (Key)

Add sets to these key exercises first when you are planning your workout. The accessory movements are not as important for you to add sets to because they can add extra fatigue too fast.

It is imperative that you focus on developing your form with these exercises to maximize the stimulus and have the best progressions week to week possible. Form is foundational to everything else.

View more cues on the movements in the section “Videos” to further improve your form. Cues are the secret to getting your body to move the way you want it to.

Visualize your form often. When you get to the gym, the only thing that changes is the weight because your form should look just like how you practiced on every single rep

Here are some more tips for your key lifts:

Barbell Back Squat – A great squat is one that is deep, for you. As upright as possible, for you. And lifts some good weight, for you. Mobility exercises and stretches can help with squat depth and being upright. Intelligent progressions and patience will increase weight over time. However, everything is based on your own circumstances. Do not expect your squat to look like another person’s, there are a lot of variables at play and you must learn to play your own game.

Goodmorning – The Goodmorning is a great core and posterior chain exercise. If you keep the hips high, you will feel a huge stretch in the hamstrings. If you keep your weight on your heels, you will feel your glutes and you can contract them at the end of the lift. If you keep your abs braced and middle back tight, you will feel the power of your core building. This exercise is a great one to test all of your stabilizing muscles as you fight to keep a straight back. Never let the low back round!

Barbell incline Bench – Lead with the elbows. Row the weight down into your chest as you tuck the elbows. Feel the back contract as you get the weight in a strong position at the bottom of the lift. It is easy to feel this when the weight is light. When your muscles are activated, you will feel a difference when the weight gets heavy.

Barbell Bicep Curl – Keep the elbows in tight. Keep the wrists slightly contracted to keep tension in the arm. Point the elbows down as you lead with the pinky corkscrewing up. Try to keep the elbows pointed down the entire lift. Lower the bar slowly to feel the biceps stretch deeply.

Barbell Skullcrushers – make sure you warm up your elbows well beforehand. Keep you elbows in and pointed up. As a note, you may try using a slight incline to your bench to add more emphasis to the long head of the tricep. I like to touch the weight to the top of my head for a good split of tension between the long head and lateral head. The more you reach the weight back behind you, the more you will feel the long head.

Barbell Banded Back Squat – Bands are great. If you do not have any, i highly recommend getting some. They will teach you how to power through the lift as the resistance increases on the way up. This translates into a lot of confidence when the bands come off.

Barbell Banded Romanian Deadlifts –  This is a great exercises to get more out of your hamstrings and glutes. It has a huge carry over into improving the strength at the bottom of your deadlift.

Barbell Flat Bench – An upper back arch can make the lift a lot more comfortable and place less tension through your shoulder. Although it cuts some of the range of motion, this safer position can allow you to lift more weight, so I think it is an overall positive. When you use your arch, you can touch slightly lower on the chest and this can put the shoulders in a better position. Make sure to keep the legs tight while you press. A stable base results in more power output.

Barbell Row – A strong row can do wonders for your pressing. Think about pausing the weight at the bottom of a bench press as you row the weight into you. Even if you cannot pause the barbell row onto your body, the intent will place a lot of tension on the back muscles.


Your Job

Stay in a Good Spot this Block

You want to add just enough sets and weight to feel like you worked out, but it is not quite a challenge yet. You want a solid workout where you leave feeling accomplished

Plan your workout and write down the weight, sets, and rep range in the Workout Plan PDF to get you ready for Week 2.

Rep Range
• Key Lifts: 6-8 Reps
• Accessory Lifts: 8-12 Reps

The rep range will be the same. The only difference is that you may not be at the top of the rep range this week. This means you should still strive to hit 8 reps on key lifts and 12 reps on accessory lifts.

• 3 RIR
• 60-70% of 1RM
• Weight Feels: Just Enough

I encourage you to pick a single weight for your working sets for each exercise. As you add more sets, you will notice that on the last set, your reps are most likely to be the lowest. 

As long as your last set is still in the rep range, this performance drop is okay and expected as your muscles get depleted. Make sure you choose a weight that allows you to be at the top of the rep range for most (if not all) of your working sets. RIR 3 is the goal for each of your sets, however, it is possible that your last set may get closer to RIR 2.

Stay away from RIR 1! You do not want to build fatigue too fast. It is better to have the reps drop and stay in the rep range. Achieving RIR 3 takes priority over staying at the top of the rep range.

• Key Lifts: 2-3 Sets
• Accessory Lifts: 2-3 Sets

Try to do the fewest amount of sets you need to get a good pump in the muscle. However, if you need more to feel a pump then this is the week to do a little more.

Do enough sets where you struggle to maintain RIR 3 on your last set of each key lift. This is a great way to measure your effort to make sure that you are not going too hard too early but also that you are not taking it too easy.

Week 2 is the Goldie Lochs week. We want just enough but not too much volume.

• Key Lifts: 90s-180s
• Accessory Lifts: 60s-90s

It is important to rest a little longer when the weights are heavier. If you struggle to maintain RIR 3 on your sets, you may need to rest a little longer between sets.

However, whenever your rest is shorter it does have the advantage of giving you a better pump and it prevents you from lifting too heavy, so you can do more sets in the same time span without giving excessive fatigue.

Above all else. make sure your rest periods are not too short where it compromises your form!


Fill out the table with your expected weights and sets before you go workout, so you have a clear mission. Then adjust based on actual performance.

Here’s how I would fill it out for a workout: