The time for mass has passed and now you can sculpt your shredded masterpiece. This 5 day program will help you bring out your best just in time for summer.
Workout Summary

Workout Description

The last few months have been great for many of us in the iron game.

We’ve upped the calories as well as the weights and the result has been new found mass and power.

I hope you’ve had fun with that but now spring is here which means summer isn’t far behind.

The jackets go away and the tank tops come out to play.

So now our focus needs to be on taking that foundation we’ve built since Thanksgiving and sculpting it out so come June we can reveal our ultimate physique.

You ready for this eight week program? I thought so. Let’s go.

Recommended: Need help losing fat? Take our Free Fat Loss Course

Weight Training

While you might not be using the extra plates and bigger dumbbells like you were during your bulk, you will still be going heavy and upping the intensity. This five day split won’t be a traditional program. You’re going to push yourself in a variety of ways to develop that muscle while etching out the detail that you need to create that shredded look.

Related: Tank Top Workout - 4 Day Muscle Building Split

This means supersets, forced reps, drop sets, holds, and rest-pause training. For those of you that need to know:

M&S Female athlete performing decline situps to get shredded

Supersets: 2 exercises performed back to back without rest.

Forced Reps: Having a partner or spotter help you lift the weight while you lower it yourself under control.

Drop Sets: Upon failure, reduce the weight you’re using and continue your set until you reach your desired rep range or failure.

Holds: Upon completing the set, you hold the weight with muscles contracted until failure.

Rest-Pause Set: Upon failure, rest for 10-15 seconds and continue your set until you reach failure again or reach your desired rep range.

Outside of your warm-up sets, there isn’t a single straight set in this program. This not only increases the intensity to help bring out the best in your muscles, it also will help you burn more calories.

Rest Periods

This is an eight week program. The rest periods change over the course of the eight weeks. This means every time you step in the gym, you’re going to have to bring it because the rest time will gradually decrease.

  • Weeks 1 and 2 – 2 minutes rest between sets.
  • Weeks 3 and 4 – 90 seconds rest between sets.
  • Weeks 5 and 6 – 60 seconds rest between sets.
  • Weeks 7 and 8 – 45 seconds rest between sets.

Day 1: Chest & Abs

Exercise Warm up Sets Work Sets Intensity Method
1. Incline Barbell Bench Press 2x8-10 3x10 2-3 forced reps
2. Dumbbell Fly 1x10 3x10-12 Drop sets
3. Weighted Dip 1x10 3x10-12 Rest-pause
4. Pec-Deck 1x10 3x12 Holds on last rep
5a. Cable Crossover - 3x12 Superset
5b. Pushup - 3x12 -
6. Hanging Leg Raise - 3x12 Holds on last rep
7a. Decline Situp - 3x15 Superset
7b. Side Bends - 3x15 -
8. Plank - 3xfailure -
9. Rope Crunch - 3x15 Drop sets

Day 2: Back

Exercise Warm up Sets Work Sets Intensity Method
1. Neutral Grip Pullups 2x8-10 3xfailure Rest-pause
2. Bent Over Barbell Row 1x10 3x10-12 Holds on last rep
3a. Reverse Grip Pulldown 1x10 3x8-10 Superset
3b. Straight Arm Pulldown 1x10 3x8-10 -
4. Wide Grip Seated Row 1x10 3x12 2-3 forced reps
5. Rack Deadlift 1x10 3x15 Drop sets

Day 3: Shoulders

Exercise Warm up Sets Work Sets Intensity Method
1a. Upright Row 1x10 3x10 Superset
1b. Seated Lateral Raise 1x10 3x10 -
2. Seated Smith Machine Shoulder Press 1x10 3x10-12 Drop sets
3. Front Plate Raise 1x10 3x12 2-3 forced reps
4. High Rope Face Pull 1x10 3x12 Rest-pause

Day 4: Arms

Exercise Warm up Sets Work Sets Intensity Method
1. EZ Bar Preacher Curl 1x10 3x10-12 2-3 forced reps
2. Close Grip Bench Press 1x10 3x10-12 Rest-pause
3. Hammer Curl 1x10 3x12 Drop sets
4. Overhead Rope Extension 1x10 3x12 Holds on last rep
5a. Standing Cable Curl 1x10 3x15 Superset
5b. Reverse Grip Pushdown 1x10 3x15 -

Day 5: Legs

Exercise Warm up Sets Work Sets Intensity Method
1. Squat 1x10 3x8-10 Rest-pause
2. Leg Press 1x15 3x15 Drop sets
3. Single Leg Extension 1x15 3x15 Holds on last rep
4a. Stiff-Legged Deadlift 1x15 3x15 Superset
4b. Seated Leg Curl 1x15 3x15 -
5. Lying Leg Curl 1x15 3x15 Forced reps
6a. Standing Calf Raise 1x20 3x20 Superset
6b. Seated Calf Raise 1x20 3x20 -

Cardio

Cardio will be performed High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT Style) for 20 total minutes. If possible, perform your cardio separate but if you must do it when training, do it post-weight training when glycogen storages are depleted.

Related: Fast Shred Program - 4 Day Compound Set Workout Split

Here’s your format for HIIT:

  1. 2 minute warm-up
  2. 30 seconds all-out effort followed by 90 seconds low-moderate effort.
  3. Repeat for a total of 8 rounds.
  4. 2 minute cool down.

You can do any form of cardio you like but my personal recommendations are elliptical, walking/sprinting, and boxing/kickboxing with the heavy bag. Alternate which forms of cardio you do so the program stays interesting and will challenge you in different ways.

HIIT cardio can be performed 3-4 times a week or as you see fit based on your individual goals.

125 Comments
Tarun Arya
Posted on: Mon, 05/30/2022 - 09:25

Intensity methods applies on all the sets or the last set of an exercise??

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 05/30/2022 - 19:18

All sets, Tarun. It's intense, and you won't use as much as you usually, but the results will pay off after 8 weeks.

Tarun Arya
Posted on: Tue, 05/31/2022 - 00:02

'you won't use as much as you usually'
Sorry But I didn't understand what you mean to say in this quoted text.
Is it Weights or something else?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/31/2022 - 10:44

Sorry for the confusion, yes, I meant you won't use as much weight.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/31/2022 - 10:44

Sorry for the confusion, yes, I meant you won't use as much weight.

June Beginner
Posted on: Sun, 05/29/2022 - 23:41

Hi Rodger, can you please suggest alternatives to some leg sets due to a torn miniscus? Think I'll struggle with squats and leg press. Thank you in advance :) x

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 05/30/2022 - 19:13

Hi, June. Unfortunately, that will require the advice of a physician, which I am not. Yeah, the squats and leg presses will be tough. So, I advise against them. Talk to your doctor and find out what exercises you can do based on the extent of your injuries.

Rodaina
Posted on: Sat, 03/19/2022 - 00:34

Hello!
How can I modify the pull-ups as I can’t do them?

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/26/2022 - 18:12

Hello, Rodaina. If you have access to a pull-up assistant station, use it. If not, then lat pulldowns or pull-ups with bands can work well.

JD
Posted on: Fri, 03/18/2022 - 23:30

Is there any specific diet or nutrition plan that should be followed with this 8 week shred? Like the fast and furious 21 day shred was a low carb plan. Any specifics like that you could point me to or just counting macros? Thanks!

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/26/2022 - 18:11

Start with this, JD. Several readers have used this guide in conjunction with this program.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/expert-guides/fat-loss

Romana
Posted on: Sat, 03/12/2022 - 17:52

Hi,

was wondering if there is something else i can do instead of pull ups and build my strength up to them? I also cant do the dips so ill do the bench dips to build strength there too.

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 03/16/2022 - 20:57

If you can do lat pulldowns, those would be a great substitute. If not, go with dumbbell pullovers.

JD
Posted on: Fri, 02/11/2022 - 22:43

Hi, just wondering do you go up in weight every set or just use the same weight for all 3 after the warmup?

For example squats.
Do I warm up at 135 and then do 3 sets at 185 or warmup at 135 then set 1 - 185, set 2 - 225 and set 3 - 275? Thanks for the assistance.

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 02/17/2022 - 18:35

Go up each set, JD. Your second option is correct. Of course, if you ever need to de-load or train lighter, the straight sets with the same weight works as well.

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 03/28/2022 - 21:07

With the emphasis on fat loss, cut rest time and keep the weight the same. If you can do the same weight for all sets with 30 seconds of rest, then bump up to heavier weight.

JD
Posted on: Tue, 03/22/2022 - 22:24

Thanks. On a similar note should I try to go up in weight every week or keep same weight as rest time decreases?

Youssef Mecky
Posted on: Fri, 02/04/2022 - 09:14

Question about drop sets and rest -pause above it says
Drop Sets: Upon failure, reduce the weight you’re using and continue your set until you reach your desired rep range or failure.
Rest-Pause Set: Upon failure, rest for 10-15 seconds and continue your set until you reach failure again or reach your desired rep range.
Does that mean I should start with the weight I would fail to do the original 10-12 reps with or after I finish my 10-12 reps I should do another set with lighter weights ?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 02/08/2022 - 18:24

Hi, Youssef. Speaking to the rest-pause sets. You keep using the same weight after the 10-15 seconds rest. So, if you're lifting 80 pounds. You would perform 10-12 reps, rest for 10-15 seconds, and then continue with the same 80 pounds. Hope this helps!

zayd zayd
Posted on: Thu, 12/30/2021 - 06:41

for drop set it should be 3 x drop set or only last set ?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 12/31/2021 - 11:12

All 3, Zayd. Each set should be a drop set.

jean pierre
Posted on: Thu, 12/16/2021 - 21:04

I workout alone what should i do for the exercises that ask for "forced reps" if i cant find a spotter?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 12/17/2021 - 15:44

Hey Jean Pierre, simply stop before you reach total failure. You can also rest-pause for 15 seconds and try to get a few more reps. That could be a good substitute for the forced reps.

‪chen opr‬‏
Posted on: Sun, 08/22/2021 - 05:42

hi

can you recommend other EXERCISES I don't have access to those machines?
(including Work Sets)
day 1
4. Pec-Deck
5a. Cable Crossover
9. Rope Crunch

day 2

3a. Reverse Grip Pulldown
3b. Straight Arm Pulldown
4. Wide Grip Seated Row

thx!!!

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 09/07/2021 - 21:10

Hi there. Can you tell us what equipment you do have access to? This would help us give the best recommendations possible.

Jalil
Posted on: Wed, 07/28/2021 - 20:18

Hi there, I wanted to start this program below but am confused how heavy to go with the sets. I normally do 10sets of 12-15 reps four different exercise each per a body part. Please advise. Thank you

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Marina
Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2021 - 20:14

Jalil,

You'll want to select a weight that allows you to perform the number of sets and reps listed for a given exercise. It might be worth starting out with a lighter weight and then working up to a weight that allows you to complete the total number of sets and reps.

Andrea
Posted on: Thu, 07/01/2021 - 05:14

This may be a stupid question and I apologize if it is but I just want to make sure I understand. On day 4, arms, exercise 5a and 5b are supersets but how are you supposed to perform them without taking a break if you have to stop to change out the machines attachments?

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Abigail
Posted on: Thu, 07/01/2021 - 09:25

Hey Andrea - yes, you'll do them back to back without a break.

Halit Enes Kalaycı
Posted on: Wed, 06/23/2021 - 18:57

Hello, first of all thank you for this amazing workout program.

I have 2 questions;

1. What do you think about fasted morning cardios?
2. What should i replace "Weighted Dips" with? sadly I can not do that .

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 06/28/2021 - 09:45

Hey Halit - yes, you can do fasted morning cardio. For the weighted dips, you can replace them with bodyweight dips or bench dips.

Dylan
Posted on: Sat, 06/05/2021 - 14:30

What should nutrition look like for these 8 weeks? Just a calorie deficit?

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 06/07/2021 - 10:40

Hey Dylan - yes, a caloric deficit is recommended for losing weight.

Riley J
Posted on: Mon, 05/10/2021 - 13:20

Im a beginner, all this looks advanced or even pro workouts for the spring shred. I guess what im asking is, is all of what im seeing beginners sheets for spring shred or did I just walk up on some pro stuff?

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Abigail
Posted on: Tue, 05/11/2021 - 09:27

Hey Riley - this is considered an advanced program

alex
Posted on: Sat, 05/01/2021 - 18:09

hey ive been doing this 8 week shred for about 5 months, should i keep doing this or switch to another regimine?
has been working great so for but i think I'm starting to plateau.

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 05/03/2021 - 09:54

Hey alex - I would switch up your routine, especially since you're starting to plateau.

alex
Posted on: Wed, 05/05/2021 - 22:55

thank you abigail, do you think dougs 5 day definition routine on muscle and strength website is a good next routine for shredding?

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Abigail
Posted on: Thu, 05/06/2021 - 09:27

That's a great option!

Zeyad
Posted on: Mon, 03/08/2021 - 12:41

Hi
do train every muscle group once per week is enough
Especially for natural lifters

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Abigail
Posted on: Wed, 03/10/2021 - 09:26

Hey Zeyad - it really depends on your goals. Check out this article: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-frequently-should-you-exe...

Caroline
Posted on: Sun, 03/07/2021 - 12:59

Hi.

Is it okay to do this program to BUILD muscle with calorie surplus? Or is there a better female specific build program please?
Thank you.

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Abigail
Posted on: Mon, 03/08/2021 - 11:56

Hey Caroline - yes you can do this program in a caloric surplus.

TacticalJuiced
Posted on: Sat, 02/27/2021 - 12:06

Ignore my last comment, I misunderstood the “perform cardio separate” part. I will just smash weighs in the morning and HIIT after my days graft. Cheers guys.

TacticalJuiced
Posted on: Sat, 02/27/2021 - 12:03

Alright team, first ever comment here but would you recommend I do HIIT only on Saturday if I’m weight training Monday to Friday? Lockdown put me from 12 to 20 percent body fat, well... lockdown and and a lot of movie nights with the family.

Nikola Markovic
Posted on: Thu, 12/17/2020 - 12:13

Hi
I have two questions about your shreded workout plan
1) can i do m hiit training 2 x week and can it look like this:
20 sec rest speed 8.5
20sec jog speed 12.5(and then after following rest speed i go with jog speed 13 km/h then 14... to 16.5km/h, and after that i go backward)
2) how fast should i do exercises?
Like time under tension(slower) or faster?

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Abigail
Posted on: Fri, 12/18/2020 - 09:36

Hey Nikola - check out this treadmill HIIT: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/4-killer-treadmill-routines. These exercises can be done at a moderate tempo.

Har
Posted on: Sat, 12/05/2020 - 09:29

Any diet plans that might help with

ZABI
Posted on: Thu, 10/15/2020 - 01:59

I HAVE STARTED THIS AND ITS MY 4WEEK ITS AMAZING ROUTINE I WOULD WISH TOO SEE MORE ABOUT THIS TYPE OF WORKOUTS
THANK YOU MUSCLEAN

Rudi McWhirr
Posted on: Sun, 06/21/2020 - 16:35

Should we be doing abs every day or just with chest?