If you are like most people, when you first begin working out, you either just start strength training by winging it or you do what your buddy told you to do. I’ll break the news that this was likely not optimal unless you got lucky. But, even if it wasn’t optimal, you likely still encountered some newbie gains as new lifters will gain strength and size doing just about anything, at least for a little while. These gains can typically last for several months but after this, you’ll start to plateau and you’ll need something new that is better designed specifically for your goals.
When your strength or muscle gains begin to slow, you might find yourself thinking about finding a new program to follow. There is also the likelihood you are taking your training more seriously or you’ve grown bored with the same thing every single week. This can happen to anyone and the good news is there are plenty of well-established and great training programs out there to choose from.
The Edge Workout
I am going to share the details of one of my programs, which is free, with all of you. Not that this means you have to do exactly what I do as you can get great results with mine or many, many others. However, what I would like to do is explain what I created the Edge workout, which is really two workouts in one document, and you can decide if it is right for you. It’s free so even if you don’t decide to move forward with it or want to try something different, you didn’t spend a single penny getting your hands on it. So what is The Edge workout?
The training program is an 11-week program, week 12 is a week off, that can be repeated as there is great flexibility in choosing supplementary exercises on a week-to-week basis. The Edge Workout includes a 5-day bodybuilding and a 5-day powerbuilding schedule. The main difference between the two is the powerbuilding program includes deadlifts and the bodybuilding does not but let’s get into a little detail about each.
The Two Workout Options
One quick note here before diving into each program. The great part of these programs is the ability for you to choose, built-in exercises that allow you to pick from the equipment you use at home. You will not see an exercise on here that requires you to search online for a replacement. You get to choose! The exercises listed in each workout were also designed to provide several options for supplemental work and knowing not everyone owns or has access to the same equipment.
There are also instructions on how to follow the programs tabbed as “Rules of the Game.”
The Bodybuilding Edge Program
The bones of this program are built around bodybuilding rep ranges primarily between 6 and 12. there is progressive overload over the course of each 4-week cycle and the rep ranges on the major lifts decrease as each week goes on. You’ll also notice that the intensity also increases each week until you reach a 4th-week deload. If you do not like taking deloads every 4th week, just skip that and start the next session but I am 43 and have been lifting for 30 years and by this time, my body needs a break. maybe this works well for you or maybe you prefer a few more weeks before a deload. That’s ok, this will still work for you.
For the most part, your first two exercises for each muscle group stay the same for each 4-week cycle and your 3rd exercise can be changed each week or, if desired, it can remain the same. Each workout is designed to take 45 minutes or less but this includes completing supersets. Don’t worry, you are working for separate muscle groups so you should be fresh and your muscles should be well rested in between each set. You’ll use a moderate rest period throughout the program which allows sufficient rest but also allows workouts to be completed in the time mentioned above.
If you generally take longer rest, don’t worry, you should adjust after just a few workouts but remember, when you are completing a set for one muscle group, the time it takes to perform that exercise counts for rest for the first exercise muscle group performed. In most cases, your muscles will have at least 2 minutes of rest between exercises, which is found to be ideal for muscle hypertrophy.
The Powerbuilding Edge Program
The power building program is built much the same as the bodybuilding program, however, deadlifts are added in. Why? You can’t power build without deadlifting!
Outside of this, there are only minor differences but this allows you to choose the program that is a better fit for you. You will see deadlifts added onto your lats and hamstring day.
What Muscle Groups?
All of them. We do not skip legs or any other group as we are only as strong as our weakest link and to build an all-around physique, you have to work them all.
How many days a week?
These programs were designed to be 5-day programs that include working with a muscle group directly 1x weekly. You can of course work out more often or if you train 2x a day, you could perform multiple workouts in one day. Also, if you feel too much is packed into one day or you find you have less time on one of your workouts, you could also extend this to a 6-day program. Again, up to you but there is some flexibility available for you.
The program includes a gradual increase in intensity, on the major lifts, for each muscle group. It also includes plenty of supplementary work for every muscle, hence the bodybuilding structure. The workouts last between 40 and 45 minutes with moderate rest in between your compound sets. I do compound sets to get more work done in ~45 minutes but also provide adequate rest for my muscles before the next set. The workout uses higher intensity and lower repetition ranges on the main lifts and increases in reps on the supplementary work. Remember, bodybuilding focus.
You will also see Reps in Reserve (RIR) throughout the program, on major lifts. As you progress, your RIR will reduce until your deload week. During each week, you should be using higher weights on these exercises, unless you do not hit the target “rep-out” number of reps. In those cases, either reduce the next time or use the same weight at the next RIR.
One of the aspects of the program I like most is being able to track my progress but still do something new each time with supplemental work. This way you know I am not fooling you into progress, you can track it. It is not variety to “confuse your muscles.” It is strategic to allow some variety as many people enjoy doing something new but I also want you to know the program is working.
The best way to know this is by watching the weights or seeing reps go up. Studies also show people stick to a program better with some variety and helps with higher motivation. If you are stuck or not making progress, you can now spot when it is time to modify the program or take some rest.
How do you Follow the Workout?
Following the workout is pretty easy and I am not going to explain it here as the document has the full instructions on tab 1 in the excel doc, labeled rules of the game. If you have questions about it, do not hesitate to reach out and ask me, I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.
Who is the Work out for?
Ok, so likely the question that appeals to many of you the most. Who should try this workout? If you like bodybuilding or powerbuilding, this might fit you well. If you also like progressive overload, some variety, and the ability to choose your exercises, you’re welcome.
This program could also be a fit if you like a combination of muscle size and strength. The program can be used by men & women of all ages. I would also recommend this for individuals who are looking to complete a workout in 45 minutes or less and still accomplishes their fitness goals.
Who is the Work Out not for?
If you are looking for a powerlifting focus only, this may not be for you. There is simply not enough flat bench, squatting, and deadlifting to make you happy.
If you like long rest periods, I am talking 3 minutes or more, you probably won’t like this either. But if you do rest that long, you probably work out over an hour anyway so the 45 minutes might scare you.
If you hate rep ranges above 6 to 8, you might not like this either as both programs call for a few exercises to be performed above this range for multiple weeks. However, your main lifts are lower in rep ranges than your supplemental exercises work.
If you do not like strength training or lifting weights, then you won’t want to do one focused on more muscle and heavier weights.
What are some of the Work Out Benefits?
- The workouts are built to be done in 45 minutes or less. You’re welcome, enjoy the rest of the day!
- The program is in excel and you can modify it if you so choose, please don’t share, just tell your buddy or girlfriend it’s free and to grab it on their own.
- There is a great deal of weight population throughout and many exercises also carry over. You can modify it easily.
- There is plenty of exercise variety
- You can easily track your progress
- It is flexible.
- There is an instructions page that tells you how to read and understand the program.
- Did I mention IT’S FREE!
What If You Don’t Own The Equipment To Do The Exercises On The Work Out?
Great question. If you don’t have the exercise equipment for some of these exercises, you have a few options.
- Go buy some new equipment here so you can do the exercises
- Reach out to me for some guidance.
- Check out our sister company, Exponent Edge products.
- Don’t work out. Wait, that’s a really bad choice, forget I wrote that one.
Are There Other Pre-built Programs To Check Out?
You bet there are! I have several other workout options to choose from. If you like BodyBuilding, Power building, or several others programs, go and check them out here. I have done them all and maybe one of these will fit you better. Every workout is well described and there is also an attached video you can watch (it’s only 5 minutes) to describe how the program works.
Why Else Can You Get For Free?
A lot?! My goal is to assist you in building muscle & strength and this is how I can help. Plus, who doesn’t like free stuff? Here is a full list of everything you can get for free at Renegade.
- The Ultimate Home Gym Guide E-Book
- How to build A Bodybuilders Home Gym for under $3,000
- How about building An Experienced Bodybuilders Home Gym for $4,000
- How to build a Powerlifters Home Gym for under $3,000
- A free Ebook on Barbell Exercises for Every Body Part
- A free Ebook on Dumbbell Exercises for Every Body Part
- An Extensive List of Chest Exercises, for different pieces of equipment
- How to build muscle with a Landmine
- A document with a list of advanced techniques, and their definition
- A link to join the Renegade Facebook Group
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding if one of these programs is right for you. If not, maybe one of my other programs is a better fit. Either way, I want to help you on your muscle and strength journey.
Good Luck and be sure to drop a note on social on how it is working for you. If you have a specific request for a program to build, let me know and I will see what I can do! Renegade
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