With how popular the 3 day machine only workout split was, we figured it was time to round out the series.
So, today we’re adding a 4 day workout routine you can do with just machines.
A lot of commercial gyms are starting to favor machines these days.
Their focus is machine training is ideal for beginners – which could be debated all day every day.
However, machines and machine-centric training can be helpful.
Machine exercises do a good job in providing a fixed range of motion, and if used in the way they are intended, can be helpful to prevent injuries and/or train around injuries.
And working out, in general, is very beneficial to your physical health, helps you maintain lean muscle mass throughout life, and does world's of good for your mental well-being and confidence.
So, if you’re training at a facility that only has machines (or if that’s what you are most comfortable using for now), let’s make sure you’re getting in effective workouts throughout the training week.
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4 Day Machine Only Workout
The following workout routine is a 4 day routine that only utilizes machines.
The workout has 2 leg days, because leg training is very important and most gym-goers typically don’t train their legs enough. Leg workouts also burn the most calories, makes you release the most natural growth hormone, and all around contributes to an enormous amount of everyday functionality.
Aside from the 2 machine only leg workouts, there is also a push workout day where you’ll train chest, shoulders, and triceps, and a pull workout day where you’ll train back and biceps.
You can split up your training day in whatever way you feel is the most conducive to your individual schedule, but a recommended split would look as follows:
- Monday: Machine Only Leg Workout 1
- Tuesday: Machine Only Push Workout
- Wednesday: Rest Day
- Thursday: Machine Only Pull Workout
- Friday: Machine Only Leg Workout 2
- Weekends: Rest Days
There is a chance you may not have one of the machines necessary to perform a lift in the workout. If that’s the case, it is recommended that you substitute the exercise for an exercise that mimics a similar movement pattern on a machine you do have available to use.
As far as rest periods go, you’ll want to limit rest to 60-90 seconds in between lifts if possible. If you need more rest when you first start the program that is fine. But aim to get your rest periods down to the recommended duration as you progress through the program.
Weight selection for each individual exercises is going to be highly dependent on your individual capabilities. It’s hard to recommend a one-size-fits-all starting weight for a program.
Instead, it’s recommended that you experiment with weight for the first week or so during the program. Always finish each set feeling as though you have 1-2 reps still left in the tank. If you can do more, increase on the next set. If it’s too heavy, decrease weight on the following set.
The rate in which you add weight throughout the program will also be dependent on your individual capabilities. So long as you are increasing the weight as time goes on, you’ll see the results you are hoping for.
Lastly, core exercises are not recommended within the program. However, if you’d like to work your core, it is recommended that you add in some bodyweight abdominal exercises such as planks, side planks, dead bugs, ab wheels, and hanging leg raises. Simply add 2-3 sets of 2 of those exercises to the end of each of your workouts.
Day 1: Machine Only Leg Workout 1
|Smith Machine Front Squat||4||8|
|Lying Leg Curl||3||10-15|
|Machine Glute Kickbacks||3||10-15|
Day 2: Machine Only Push Workout
|Machine Chest Press||4||8|
|Machine Shoulder Press||4||8|
|Machine Lateral Raise||3||12-15|
|Machine Tricep Pressdown||3||12-15|
Day 3: Machine Only Pull Workout
|Machine Pull Down||4||8|
|Machine Chin Up||3||10-12|
Day 4: Machine Only Leg Workout 2
|Smith Machine Squat||4||8|
|Seated Leg Curls||3||10-15|
|Wide Leg Press||3||10-15|
|Standing Leg Curl||3||10-15|
The amount of cardio you do and the frequency in which you do it is going to depend on your goals, the type of cardio you choose to do (HIIT vs LISS) and the form of machinery you select for your cardio of choice.
For most people, it’s wise to incorporate some form of cardio into their lifestyle. Whether that’s at the gym after training, in the mornings fasted, or on recovery days – so long as you get it in and do it consistently, you’ll see the health benefits associated with cardio.
Most forms of cardio will pair well with this particular program. The only thing to keep in mind is to monitor your recovery and energy levels so you don’t overdo it. If you’re not recovering well from your workouts or are lacking energy, and your diet and sleep is on point, it might be wise to dial back your cardio a smidge.
Most people would be best served in accomplishing the goal of this program by performing 5-10 mins of light cardio before working out with this program and 10-20 mins of cardio after finishing their workouts with this program.
If you only have access to machines at your gym, or are simply more comfortable using machines, this program is for you.
Depending on your situation, once you’ve gotten comfortable with this program and you’ve gained some experience in the gym, it may be wise to progress to a workout routine that utilizes free weights (or a combination of machines and free weights).
That duration will be highly dependent on you as an individual, but a good test duration of time is about 6 weeks.
If you have any questions about the program listed, make sure to leave them in the comments section below for us to reply to!