10 Week Mass Building Program

10 Week Mass Building Program For Hardgainers
This workout is designed to increase your muscle mass as much as possible in 10 weeks. Works each muscle group hard once per week using mostly heavy compound exercises.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Split
Advanced
4
Barbell, Bodyweight, Dumbbells, Machines
Male & Female

Workout Description

10 week mass building program. This workout is designed to increase your muscle mass as much as possible in 10 weeks. The program works each muscle group hard once per week using mostly heavy compound exercises. You will train on a 4 day split routine, resting on Wednesdays and the weekends. To get the most out of this program you need to be eating BIG. Big meals, at least 5 times a day.

Monday - Chest and Triceps
Chest
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Bench Press 4 10, 8, 8, 6
Incline Bench Press 3 8, 8, 6
Decline Bench Press 3 8, 8, 6
Dumbbell Flys 2 10
Dumbbell Pullover 2 8
Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Tricep Extension 4 10, 8, 8, 6 adding weight
Tricep Dip 3 10
Tricep Bench Dip 3 8
Notes
None.
Tuesday - Back and Biceps
Back
Exercise Sets Reps
Chin Up 2 8
One Arm Dumbbell Row 3 8
Seated Row 2 8
Bent Over Barbell Row 2 8
Lat Pull Down 3 10, 10, 8
Biceps
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Barbell Curl 3 8, 8, 6
Close Grip Preacher Curl 3 8, 8, 6
Incline Dumbbell Curl 2 12-14
Concentration Curl 2 10
Notes
None.

WEDNESDAY - REST DAY/CARDIO

Thursday - Shoulders and Forearms
Shoulders
Exercise Sets Reps
Machine Shoulder Press 3 10
Dumbbell Reverse Fly 3 8-10
Military Press 4 10
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 2 10
Dumbbell Shrugs 2 10
Upright Row 2 10
Forearms
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Wrist Curl 4 10
Barbell Wrist Curl 4 10
Notes
Dumbbell shrugs and upright row can be supersetted.
Friday - legs
Legs
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 5 10, 8, 8, 6, 4
Leg Extension 3 12
Leg Curl 3 12
Calves
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Calf Raise 4 12
Seated calf Raise 2 12
Notes
None.

WEEKEND - REST TIME

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2.3K Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Wed, 07/01/2015 - 16:30
Stephen

My schedule does not allow for any activity on Thursdays. Keeping weekends as off days, would it be wise to make Thursday my one off day instead of Wednesday? So, my schedule would appear as such...
Monday- Chest/Tris
Tuesday- Back/Bis
Wednesday- Shoulders/Forearms
Thursday- OFF
Friday- Legs
Sat/Sun- OFF

MikeWines's picture
Posted Thu, 07/02/2015 - 09:24
MikeWines

Stephen,
If it was me I would do a 2 ON/2 OFF/2 ON/1 OFF schedule but if your job or social life doesn't allow for that then you could set up your training as above.

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Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 10:52
Nick Kardamis

When the rep sequence is 10,8,8,6, does that mean you do a set of 10, add weight, do two sets of 8, add weight, then do a set of 6? OR does that
mean you add weight for EACH set but the reps go that way? So 10 reps, add weight, 8 reps, add weight, 8 reps, add weight, 6 reps.

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 15:32
MikeWines

Nick,
You can do either.

MikeWines's picture
Posted Wed, 07/01/2015 - 09:30
MikeWines

Each is simply a tool in your toolbox. For example, you could modify basically any set and rep scheme by switching from straight sets to a pyramid or reverse pyramid template but the actual layout on paper would look the same (i.e. 5x5).

That could look a variety of different ways:
255x5
255x5
255x5
255x5
255x5

OR

275x5
265x5
255x5
245x5
235x5

OR

235x5
245x5
255x5
265x5
275x5

In the end, you will still accomplish the same amount of absolute volume (sets x reps x weight x distance moved) for each scheme (i.e. 6,375lbs) but certain setups work better in specific situations.

For example, someone who doesn't have a very large recovery capability will likely do better with a pyramid style of training which equates to roughly 2 tough sets and 1 incredibly hard set to finish. Where as someone who can handle more training volume at a higher percentage of their 1-RM would do better with straight sets. Reverse pyramids could be used to accumulate more volume once a set was achieved with a near maximal weight (i.e. 275 in this case) and the nervous system was fatigued.

As I said, they're just tools in the toolbox but you have to known how and when to apply them effectively.

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Posted Tue, 06/30/2015 - 12:10
Nick Kardamis

Basically there's no one "best" way, huh? As long as the stimulus has been made. Do I have the right idea? So all these programs are basic guidelines but nothing is set in stone. I think I'm catching on. My heart is in it, that's for sure. But my brain has been holding me back by analyzing everything to death.

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Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 06:47
Arpat

Thank you for providing this awesome program. I'm going to follow your program; however, I would like to lose some fat on my stomach. I'm wondering if I should do cardio after lifting. If I do cardio on my rest day, do I need to consume protein right after the exercise?

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Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 09:03
MikeWines

Arpat,
In order to lose fat, you must consume less calories than you burn. If you're in a caloric surplus, you won't lose body fat.

If you wondering about when to eat regarding cardio, that depends upon your preworkout meal. If you've just eaten an hour before your session then there is no need to eat directly upon completion. Not only that, there is no need for a protein shake specifically, you can just eat whole foods.

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Posted Tue, 06/30/2015 - 05:43
Arpat

Thank you Mike
I'm worried that if I don't eat enough calories, I wouldn't be able to gain muscles. I'm 5'9 and I weight 150 pounds. I workout 4 days per week. I eat around 120 grams protein everyday. I consume usually 2500 calories, and I eat less carbs on my rest day. Is it enough for me to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Tue, 06/30/2015 - 09:18
MikeWines

Is your weight increasing on the scale? No? Then it's time to eat more. I would bump that protein up to 1 gram per pound of bodyweight, ensure you're eating enough fat, and then fill in the rest with carbs.

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Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 05:46
Nimmo

I am currently 6`5" tall and weigh 244lbs i am looking to build muscle and define my physique would this be a good program for me?

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Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 09:04
MikeWines

Nimmo,
Sure, any program which you enjoy, allows you to work hard, and helps you to stay consistent is the right program for you.

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Posted Sun, 06/28/2015 - 12:15
Gaz

Hi

I don't have access to a gym but I have a barbell, bench and squat rack. Is there anything I can do instead of some of the machine sets?

Thanks

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 09:10
MikeWines

Gaz,
Most of the assistance work can be completed using bands or valslides (i.e. the equivalent of furniture sliders).

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Posted Sun, 06/28/2015 - 09:17
Ken

Kinda odd you don't have Deadlifts in your back day program considering its a thee mass builder as squats. Any reason for this ?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 09:16
MikeWines

Ken,
I didn't write the program but I would definitely say you could include deadlifts on the back day as that's something this program is definitely lacking.

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Posted Fri, 06/26/2015 - 17:37
Conner

Im 5' 7" 115 lbs will this be a good workout program for me?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/29/2015 - 09:05
MikeWines

Conner,
Sure, any program which you enjoy, allows you to work hard, and helps you to stay consistent is the right program for you.

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Posted Sun, 06/21/2015 - 12:36
Mak

hey first of all thanks for give us such a nice knowledge about , my question is that i am 5'7 guy having 64kg weight i dnt want to gain that much size i just want to having a good physique so you are suggesting us to do only 4days per week and what about the rest 3 days , and what are the need of these ???? please suggest me

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/22/2015 - 09:58
MikeWines

Mak,
Run the program as written. The rest days are just as important as the training days.

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Posted Sat, 06/20/2015 - 10:36
Matt

Can I change the triceps portion to close grip bench, skull crushers, then triceps cable extensions?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/22/2015 - 10:00
MikeWines

Matt,
Sure, that'd be fine.

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Posted Thu, 06/18/2015 - 19:06
Jose

I really want to start on this program and currently I am 6ft and weight 160 pounds. I really want to gain more weight because i am really skinny would this program be the best way to go? If so does anyone have any experience>

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Posted Fri, 06/19/2015 - 09:41
MikeWines

Crush it big guy. The best program is the one that you enjoy and consistently stick to.

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Posted Mon, 06/22/2015 - 10:40
mark

Gaining weight is very simple. Add one jumbo avocado to your diet daily as well as a ounce servings of walnuts and 2 bananas daily. This will definitely help you gain weight. Also do compound exercises and if you are able do 4 sets of 15-20 repetitions. Sleep extra if you can. That should do it.

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Posted Wed, 06/17/2015 - 17:48
tony

Are all the reps heavy? Also how much cardio do you recommend?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Thu, 06/18/2015 - 09:12
MikeWines

Tony,
"Heavy" is a relative term. You should be using a weight which you can control for the assigned number of repetitions. Over time though you should actively be trying to increase that weight.

For conditioning, that will depend upon your goal. If you're someone who is looking to cut some weight, you might throw 1 day of sled pushes, hill sprints, or jumping rope along with another day of low intensity work such as a long walk. However, if you struggle to gain weight then it may be more advantageous to keep the cardiovascular work to a minimum and stick with just 1 day.

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Posted Wed, 06/17/2015 - 12:43
George

So does this also come with a meal plan or do you just flow with it and have your own.

MikeWines's picture
Posted Thu, 06/18/2015 - 09:17
MikeWines

The authors recommendations were to "eat BIG." I realize that's rather nebulous but you can use our BMR calculator here (https://www.muscleandstrength.com/tools/bmr-calculator) to give you a rough estimate on how many calories you should be taking in. Just keep in mind, if you're looking to gain weight, you should add 300-500 calories to the number spit out by the BMR calculator and adjust up or down from there dependent upon weight loss or gain.

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Posted Thu, 06/11/2015 - 01:32
Rahul

Hi
First of all thanks for providing such a wonderful workout plan.
I have actually concerns about diet I should take with this plan. I generally go to gym at 7.30 am and for that I wake up at 7am so can eat something in these 30 min pre workout ?
Also though I am not overweight but I have bit of fatty stomach And I don't see Abs workout part of this plan,so can I expect following this plan would reduce that fat from waist?

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Posted Mon, 06/08/2015 - 13:15
Rajeev

This routine remains the same for the ten weeks?

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Posted Mon, 06/08/2015 - 19:54
Matt

Yes but you should add weight as you get stronger.

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Posted Wed, 06/03/2015 - 14:37
Aaron

Why just 2 sets in some exercises? Are those 2 sets enough or should I increase them to 3-4?

MikeWines's picture
Posted Thu, 06/04/2015 - 09:06
MikeWines

Aaron,
I would run the program exactly as written initially (6-8 weeks) and then make adjustments.

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Posted Thu, 06/04/2015 - 09:10
mark

I guess there are numerous factors that will affect your decision and its ramifications. More is not necessarily better. Last week I lifted weights continuously for 2 hours and when I got home I could not sleep the whole night. Finally the next day I got sleep but woke up so sore every bone in my body hurt. That went on for 2 days . I was physically and mentally unproductive for 2 days. More is not necessary better.

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Posted Mon, 06/01/2015 - 16:29
mark

Sometimes I go crazy and lift weights for 2 hours; modifying the routine somewhat and slower the pace, but my 2 questions are. How do you deal with increasing cortisol levels in the body; which I think are keeping me up tossing and turning a whole night. Also my age is 63 and I think at some point; the older body just cannot react or adapt to a routine that you prescribe. A 60 year old guy can not look like a 25 years old. So how do you adapt or modify your schedule here. I can still do it; but I am unsure whether I might do harm.

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Posted Tue, 06/02/2015 - 09:14
MikeWines

Rest. Simple as that.

Take naps.
Go to bed an hour earlier every single night.
Train less frequently or with less intensity.
Avoid caffeine.
Ideally be in bed by not later than 10 or 10:30
De-stress your lifestyle (work, relationships, social life, etc).
Stop using a preworkout supplement entirely.
Perform a bit more low intensity steady state cardio (helps to balance neurotransmitters within the brain)

^That's where I would start. Modify your lifestyle AND your programming.

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Posted Mon, 06/08/2015 - 20:28
mark

ok THANKS I WILL DO IT. MARK

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Posted Mon, 06/01/2015 - 09:36
Sara

How long should this take....

MikeWines's picture
Posted Mon, 06/01/2015 - 10:08
MikeWines

The workouts or the entire program?

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Posted Mon, 06/01/2015 - 15:58
Sara

One workout

MikeWines's picture
Posted Tue, 06/02/2015 - 09:09
MikeWines

I've never run this programming myself but I would guess anywhere from 60-90 minutes depending upon the experience of the lifter, rest times, and available equipment.

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Posted Thu, 05/28/2015 - 21:01
Peter

Do I have to add weight when the reps decrease??

MikeWines's picture
Posted Fri, 05/29/2015 - 09:23
MikeWines

Do you want to get stronger? If yes, then work to incrementally increase either the weight used (actual tonnage) or the total number of reps performed with a selected weight.

Strength is built through progressive overload and adaptation, if you never push yourself (i.e. increase the weight), then your body has no reason to adapt.

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Posted Mon, 05/25/2015 - 21:10
barry barter

could you do core/abs on wednesday's?

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Posted Thu, 05/21/2015 - 20:23
Zee

Do I need to go up in weight with every set? Or just stick to the same weight??

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Posted Sat, 05/23/2015 - 12:44
daniel

Ofcourse you need to increase the weights if you feel it is getting easier. always push yourself.

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Posted Fri, 05/29/2015 - 08:05
Roon

Increase the weight with every set.

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Posted Sat, 05/23/2015 - 14:30
Zee

I get that. But what was confusing me is that if was performing an exercise and doing 4 sets of 10reps... Would I need to increase the weight in every set or just stick to the same weight throughout them sets?

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Posted Wed, 05/13/2015 - 22:38
Arman Dhillon

How much rest time do you give between each exercise?