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My Favorite Routine

I receive numerous requests to detail a specific training routine. While I don't believe that there is one magical routine or that "one size fits all", the routine shown here has been incredibly effective over a long period of time. Plus, this is a routine that takes minimum time.

I like this routine for a number of reasons. The routine has a lot of different movements. It's fun to do a wide range of movements and there's a lot to be said for being sure that all the major muscle groups and joints are trained through complete and different ranges of motion. There's also an emphasis on some basic movements so that a more strength-oriented person can enjoy and profit from this routine. The routine is also flexible enough so that it could be done over a week, or if need be shorter or longer time periods. Finally, each session is short that you can train with great focus and intensity but still feel close to normal 20 to 30 minutes after training. That's a big bonus for busy people. As you also can see with this update and some changes, I enjoy the process of trying to make a good overall training routine even better!

Here's the routine. 1,2,3,4,5

Day One Day Three Day Five Dr. Richard A. Winett
MT Publisher
Nautilus Leg Extension
Back/Chest Legs/Low Back/Abs Shoulders/Arms/Forearms
Nautilus Pullover
F. Hammer Pulldown
OR Nautilus Row
Nautilus Behind the Neck
Hammer Decline Press
Nautilus 40 Degree Chest or
Nautilus Fly
Rear Delt Raise
Dumb Bell Shrugs
Nautilus 4-Way Neck
(25 minutes)
Squat or Smith Squat
Nautilus Leg Extension
Leg Press
Straight Bar SL Deadlift
Nautilus Lower Back
Nautilus Leg Curl
Glute/Ham Raise
Leg Press Calf Raise
1 Leg Calf Raise
Nautilus Crunch
DB Side Bend
Hanging Reverse Crunch
Nautilus Rotary Torso
Nautilus Adductor/Abductor
(35 minutes)
Shoulders/Arms/ Forearms
Nautilus Press
Hammer Lateral Raise
Nautilus 1 Hand Lateral Raise
Nautilus Curls
Incline DB Curls
MedX Triceps
Forearm Curl
Reverse Forearm Curl
Forearm Twists
(25 minutes)
15- 20 minute break
Schwinn Air Dyne3
No Aerobics 15 - 20 Minute Break
Concept 2 Rower or Versa Climber3

  1. The only warm-up sets in the routine are two reps for one to two sets for the pullover and chest press on day one, two reps for three sets in the squat and one rep for one set in the deadlift on day three, and two reps for one set in the shoulder press on day five. All exercises are done for one set only of 5 to 8 repetitions. All repetitions are done either in an 8 second concentric and 4 second eccentric speed or 10 second concentric and 5 second eccentric speed with the following exceptions where a 4,4 speed is used: chins, squats, leg press, deadlift, dips. About 75 seconds is taken between sets.
  2. Comfortable walking is done for 20 to 30 minutes on training days (usually after training as a transition time) and fast walking for 50 to 60 minutes is done on off-days.
  3. Graded Exercise Protocol (GXP)
    • 5 minute graded warm-up to 80% maximum heart rate
    • 5 minute aerobic work at 85% maximum heart rate (just below lactate threshold, or as it is sometimes called, anaerobic threshold (AT); sometimes the work part is extended for 10 -15 minutes but still below the AT)
    • 5 minute cooldown
    Training percentages are calculated using the Karvonen method. Click here to read more about the details and rationale for this method.
  4. I generally train in 6-8 week cycles. That is, I train very hard and progressively for about 6 weeks and then do 1 to 2 easier weeks. This works extremely well.
  5. The overall approach is a hybrid rationally combining elements from high intensity training and Mike Mentzer's, Clarence Bass's and Dorian Yates's adaptations of that model and the more scientifically based training model from Dr. Ralph Carpinelli.