Fast Shred Program: 4 Day Compound Set Workout Split

Fast Shred Program: 4 Day Compound Set Workout Split
Tired of spending hours in the gym without getting the results you want? Try the Fast Shred program; a compound set workout to get you shredded & on your way!

Workout Summary

Lose Fat
Split
Intermediate
8 weeks
4
30-45 minutes
Bands, Barbell, Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, Machines
Male & Female
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Workout Description

Do you want to get shredded?

Do you also want to cut down on the hours you spend in the gym on a weekly basis?

With summer right around the corner, I can’t say that I blame you if you answered yes to both of those questions.

I mean, who wants to spend all their time in the gym when they could be hanging out by the pool, shredded, soaking up that summer sun?

That’s why I’ve designed a sequel to the Fast Mass Program.

But instead of packing on size, we’re going to focus on shredding some body fat this go around.

Related: Tank Top Workout - 4 Day Muscle Building Split

The Basic Component of the Fast Shred Program

In the Fast Mass Program, I introduced you to a time saving intensity booster known as the superset.

In this program, we (for the most part) traded out the superset for compound sets.

What’s the difference? I’m glad you asked. Supersets involve opposing muscle groups, for example you would superset a set of bicep curls with a set of dumbbell tricep extensions.

Compound sets involve the same muscle group. So, for a traditional back compound set, immediately after a set of barbell rows you might hit a set of pullups.

In the Fast Shred Program, I’ve done my best to strategically set up compound sets that involve a heavy lift followed by a set of a bodyweight exercises. This way, you can utilize a heavier weight for the weighted motion without fear of injury risk of a loaded second movement.

That’s not to say that a few compound sets, supersets and giant sets involving loaded exercises weren’t incorporated into this program, but it was avoided for the majority of the sets.

The compound set drastically increases the muscle’s time under tension, thus causing greater overall muscle damage. Combined with proper nutrition, rest, and recovery the end result should be increased muscular endurance and a greater amount of fat loss.

Day 1 – Lower Body
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Squat 4 8-12
1b. Bodyweight Squat 4 12-20
2a. Dumbbell RDL 4 8-12
2b. Leg Curls 4 12-20
3a. Leg Press 3 8-12
3b. Reverse Bodyweight Lunge 3 10 each leg
Day 2 – Upper Body
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Bench Press 4 8-12
1b. Pushup 4 12-20
2a. Barbell Row 4 8-12
2b. Inverted Row 4 12-20
3a. Lateral Raises 3 8-12
3b. Front Raises 3 8-12
3c. Rear Delt Raises 3 8-12
4a. 21's 3 21's
4b. Seated Tricep Extension 3 8-12
Day 3 – Off / Active Recovery / Abs

off (light cardio 20-40 minutes of walking for active recovery)

Day 4 – Lower Body
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Barbell Deadlift 4 8-12
1b. Single Leg Toe Touch 4 10 each leg
2a. Front Squat 3 8-12
2b. Side Lunges 3 10 each side
3a. Leg Extension 3 8-12
3b. Leg Curls 3 8-12
4a. Standing Calf Raise 3 20
4b. Seated Calf Raise 3 20
4c. Jump Rope 3 1 min
Day 5 – Upper Body
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Standing Dumbbell Press 4 8-12
1b. Band Pull Apart 4 12-20
2a. Dumbbell Row 4 8-12
2b. Pullup 4 12-20
3a. Dumbbell Incline Press 4 8-12
3b. Incline Fly 4 12-20
4a. Dumbbell Curl 3 8-12
4b. Rope Pressdown 3 8-12
Day 6 &7 – Off/Active Recovery/ Abs

off (light cardio 20-40 minutes of walking for active recovery)

M&S Female Athlete Performing Inverted Rows

FAQs

How Long Should I Take for My Rest Periods?

You won’t be taking any rest periods in between compound, super, or giant sets.

After you finished the prescribed reps for all of the exercises in a set, take between 60-90 seconds worth of rest before attacking your next set.

With that said, it is important to know your own ability and fitness level. If you need longer in between sets, take a little longer to rest in between sets.

If I Eat Properly and Do this Program, How Long Will It Take to See Results?

There are quite a few things that will determine your success with this program. Nutrition is indeed a key factor. For fat loss, you want to make sure you are in a caloric deficit. Find out your BMR here, then subtract ~250-500 calories away from that.

Other factors will include the amount of hours you get of sleep each night and how you spend your time recovering outside of the gym.

A good goal to aim for is about 0.25-0.5lbs of fat loss per week. Grant it, this will depend greatly on your current body composition and all of the factors listed above.

Related: How To Build A Fat Loss Meal Plan

What Should I Do For Abs?

Everyone wants a six pack for summer. Feel free to add in ab and core exercises to the tailend of these workouts or on off days.

Check out our full database of ab workouts here.

Can I Switch up the Order of the Workouts/Sub Exercises?

You’re more than welcome to tailor this program whatever way you see fit to better fit your needs and help you reach your goals.

With that said, be cautious about subbing exercises and switching the workout order. You want to make sure you are still able to recover properly from each workout as this is how you will inevitably see the results you want.

If you have any other questions, comments, and/or try the workout, let us know in the comments section below!

66 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Tue, 10/30/2018 - 12:38
Darwin

Hi Josh,

Is it ok to switch the upper and lower days?

Thanks

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 10/30/2018 - 15:16
JoshEngland

Hi Darwin,

Yes, that should be fine.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 10/27/2018 - 18:44
Tj

Can i perform carido hiit on all days training? I dont wanna over due anything i want the right kind of workout to eliminate body fat as much as i can but dont wanna burn myself out. Thanks, tj

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 10/29/2018 - 09:19
JoshEngland

Hi TJ,

You can add cardio to this program to help increase the amount of calories you burn, sure. However, it may or may not be necessary.

If you do decide to add in some cardio, I'd recommend something light and spaced out from your weight training session (perhaps do one in the morning and one in the evening).

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 09/06/2018 - 02:10
Harry

Thanks. Is it ok to change the compound sets to super sets? Say the bench press with the barbell row and the push-up with the incline row? Or is there a better programme for doing that?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 09/06/2018 - 12:41
JoshEngland

Hi Harry,

Sure, you could do that. Or you could check out the Fast Mass program here that incorporates supersets: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/fast-mass-program

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Posted Mon, 08/27/2018 - 08:33
Harry

Can I sub tricep press downs for dips?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 08/27/2018 - 08:43
JoshEngland

Hi Harry,

Yes, that should be fine.

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Posted Tue, 07/10/2018 - 11:44
craig

Hey Josh
I have just started the fast mass programme a friend referred to me as I work in a office and can really only do weight training on my dinner hour so thought it would be ideal. although I can do cardio outside of work hours , cycling, walking, football ; I am trying to find perfect plan that will work for me. , I am 16 Stone, I have toned arms and legs but a lot of weight is on my mid section. My main aim is to lose fat from this area but also get some shape and size back to my mid & upper body, Would you recommend sticking with the fast mass or shifting onto this fast shred workout.
cheers

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 07/11/2018 - 09:30
JoshEngland

Hi Craig,

That''s awesome! Thank your friend for sharing my workouts for me :)

I'm a huge fan of doing the fast mass program. I'd recommend starting with that program and moving to this one once you've finished that program.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 06/14/2018 - 22:32
Danarius Watts

Will or can you gain some muscle from doing this program?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Fri, 06/15/2018 - 08:54
JoshEngland

Hi Danarius,

Sure! If you're eating in a calorie surplus or are new to weight training.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sun, 06/10/2018 - 07:07
John

Hi,
i have a simple question - I am from a smaller village and there we have a little gym - I love this gym, but there is not any function zone and jumping with jump rope is quite dangerous. So Is there any alternative for Jump rope? For example Jumping jacks? Or do you have any better idea with which exercise I can replace jump rope?

Thanks so much for answer!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 06/11/2018 - 08:37
JoshEngland

Hi John,

Yes, jumping jacks would be a fine alternative to the jump rope in this instance.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 06/02/2018 - 14:42
Ryan Cherry

Okay, I have finally decided to do this program next! I have been lifting for about 5 years. I like to change it up often. I do want to see if I can make a few adjustments to the schedule. I would like to add a couple 10-15 HIIT sessions a week after the workouts. I like to start my workout week on Sunday and I need Wednesday off from the gym. I can get a long walk in and foam rolling in but can't get to the gym that day.. I would also prefer to do one day for some ab isolation work and steady-state cardio on the bike, elliptical or stair master instead of having 3 days of active rest. Could I reorder the week like this?

Sunday: Lower Body Workout 1 with 3 sets of barbell hip thrusts compounded with body weight hip thrusts like someone commented below/ and a few ab exercises at the end
Monday: Upper Body Workout 1/10-15 min HIIT at the end
Tuesday: Steady-State Cardio (Elliptical, Stairmaster, or Bike for 30 mins) and an ab circuit.
Wednesday: Active Rest (walking and foam rolling/stretching)
Thursday: Lower Body Workout 2/ a few ab exercises at the end
Friday: Upper Body Workout 2/10-15 min HIIT
Saturday: Active Rest (walking and foam rolling/stretching)

This program looks like the lifting sessions keep your heart up anyway so I didn't want to overdo the cardio. I am at a lean body fat percentage now, but it's summer so I want to keep it up! Hopefully this looks okay. But you are the expert!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 06/04/2018 - 10:51
JoshEngland

Hi Ryan,

That's a fine way to alter this program template to better fit you individual needs and goals. Give it a shot!

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Posted Mon, 06/04/2018 - 12:46
Ryan Cherry

Also, is that enough ab training? Or would you recommend more. I did day one yesterday, and it burned! Loved it! Great stuff man.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 06/04/2018 - 14:06
JoshEngland

Hi Ryan,

Yes, it should be plenty :)

If you find you need some additional isolation work to fulfill your goals, feel free to add it in though.

That's awesome man! Glad you're enjoying the program, keep it up!

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Posted Mon, 06/04/2018 - 16:15
Ryan Cherry

I hate asking so many questions... promise this is the last. I can't do back squats because of my neck. So I did Front Squats on the first day. For the second lower body day. Should I do front squats again or sub it for goblet squats or hack squats?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 06/05/2018 - 08:45
JoshEngland

Hi Ryan,

Yes, that is perfectly fine. So long as you are training the squat movement pattern, you'll get the benefits associated with performing the exercise.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 06/02/2018 - 14:35
Pal

Hello,
this looks amazing and from Monday I start with this program! :-)
1) But I would like to ask how many cardio sessions do you recommend in a week?
- When I lift Weights (Mo, Tu, Th, Fr) take a look for HIIT after workout (sprints on treadmill, etc)
- Wednesday and Saturday some cardio in lower intensity (running or longer walk). Sunday Full rest day (maybe some shorter walk to nature, etc)

And do you think is a bad idea insert to Saturday after Cardio a few assisted pull-ups bands and abs training? Because I have a problem with pull-ups so this will be better practice in a piece at home. :)

Thanks fo answer!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 06/04/2018 - 10:56
JoshEngland

Hi Pal,

Depends on the style of cardio and intensity. Personally, I do cardio every day, but it's low intensity and is me walking my dog for 2-3 miles. You should be fine adding in the cardio mentioned.

Sure! That should be fine as well.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 05/23/2018 - 00:51
Lester

This looks awesome! Looking forward to trying it! Quick question -- How long should the rest time be in between sets? Thanks!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 05/29/2018 - 11:47
JoshEngland

Hi Lester,

Awesome! Hope you enjoy! Take 30-45 Secs for rest periods.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 05/19/2018 - 14:42
DJ

For the 21s do I perform 21 reps in total ? Or do I do 21s 3 times to equal 63 curls?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 05/29/2018 - 11:48
JoshEngland

Hi DJ,

3 sets of 21 reps, so yes, 63 total. But they should be performed in a 21 set fashion (7 top, 7 bottom, 7 full reps).

Hope this helps!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 07/19/2018 - 10:34
JoshEngland

Hi DJ,

Depends on how many days you want to commit to going to the gym going forward. Below is a solid option for a 4 day program:

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/body-fat-blaster-8-week-workout

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 07/18/2018 - 21:41
Dj

I like the workout so much I’m stretching it for 2 more weeks! Any suggestions on another shredding workout to do when I’m done with this one?

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Posted Fri, 05/04/2018 - 20:47
Jay

What supplements are recommended for this program?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 05/07/2018 - 09:20
JoshEngland

Hi Jay,

Depends on your individual needs. These are a good starting point:

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/5-supplements-you-need-to-take

Hope this helps!

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Posted Tue, 04/03/2018 - 08:06
Scott

Hey mate. Loyal follower here, all the way from Australia. Thought I'd let ya know that I started this program 4 weeks ago, after almost 12 months off due to a workplace injury. Anyway, I decided to use this to get some conditioning back. What can I say, it's brilliant! I'm also combining it with Steady-State Cardio, as well as Active Recovery on my non-training days. As it's coming into the cooler months over here I'm gonna use your Fast Mass program to put some muscle mass back on after I've run this one for a good couple of months I'll let ya know how that one goes as well

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 04/03/2018 - 09:03
JoshEngland

Hey Scott!

That's awesome! Thanks for sharing! Glad you've seen some success with Fast Shred! Keep me posted on how Fast Mass goes!

Cheers!

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Posted Sun, 03/11/2018 - 13:35
Abdullah

Hey josh I was just a bit confused on the side of each exercise what does the 1a 1b mean is this what we’re supposed to make the compound set.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 03/12/2018 - 09:12
JoshEngland

Hi Abdullah,

Yes, that is correct.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 03/10/2018 - 13:04
Ahmed elkady

Can't explain how I really like this program only by reading it , I don't know the author but after I read this I went through all his programs . You got me sir , this comes from a man really knows what he's doing . That's exactly the kind of program i was looking for, thank you very much . I'll definitely start this program . Best regards josh

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 03/12/2018 - 09:25
JoshEngland

Hi Ahmed,

Thank you kindly! Glad you found a program that would fit your needs and help your goals.

Best of luck and if you have any questions, please reach out!

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Posted Thu, 02/22/2018 - 16:30
Sukhvinder Singh

Hey Josh What’s a good replacement for the bands exercise? We don’t have bands at my gym

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 02/22/2018 - 16:34
JoshEngland

Hi Sukhvinder,

Go with another bent over reverse fly for the band pull apart.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Thu, 02/15/2018 - 13:11
MOY

Quick question! Once I finish the first two exercises in a compound set do I go to the next ones or do I repeat the exercises until all sets are complete?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Thu, 02/15/2018 - 14:56
JoshEngland

Hi MOY,

Perform all of the sets before moving on to the next exercise pairing.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Mon, 01/01/2018 - 13:40
Yasith

Why have you said 8-12 reps for 21's? Isn't it 21 reps?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 01/02/2018 - 09:36
JoshEngland

Hi Yasith,

Ha! Good catch! Yes, that is a typo. We'll get that fixed right away.

Thanks!

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Posted Mon, 09/25/2017 - 01:17
Joshua

I am skinny fat,so wi I be able to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time using this program?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Tue, 09/26/2017 - 12:16
JoshEngland

Hi Joshua,

Yes, by consistently performing this workout in conjunction with an appropriate diet and adequate sleep each night, you should be able to accomplish your goals.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 09/27/2017 - 12:30
Joshua

Thanks Josh,i will follow this program soon and share my result

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Posted Wed, 09/06/2017 - 15:00
Preston

I'm confused by your answer to the first FAQ about rest : "You won’t be taking any rest periods in between compound, super, or giant sets.
After you finished the prescribed rest for all of the exercises in a set, take between 60-90 seconds worth of rest before attacking your next set."" What is the prescribed rest? Did you mean "reps"? Using day 1, set 1 as an example, I'm guessing that I'm supposed to do 8-12 squats immediately followed by 12-20 bodyweight squats, then followed by 60-90 secs rest. Is this right?

Please let me know. Thank you!

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 09/06/2017 - 15:07
JoshEngland

Hi Preston,

Yes, the example you provided is correct. You preform both exercises, then take a rest. That equals 1 set. I apologize for the confusion and will get that fixed. Thank you for pointing it out to us.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Sat, 08/26/2017 - 06:23
TK

I need Fridays to be an off day, as well as Sundays. How can I adjust this program to do so?

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 08/28/2017 - 08:41
JoshEngland

Hi Tk,

The easiest solution would be to move Friday's workout to Saturday.

Hope this helps!

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Posted Tue, 08/29/2017 - 05:12
TK

Thanks Josh. The simplest answer...