If you're trying to add lean muscle quickly, the huge in a hurry workout program is perfect for you! Try out this 3 day a week program to build muscle!
Workout Summary
  • Main Goal
    Build Muscle
  • Workout Type
  • Training Level
  • Program Duration12 weeks
  • Days Per Week
  • Time Per Workout60-75 minutes
  • Equipment Required
    Barbell, Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells
  • Target Gender Male
  • Workout PDF Download Workout

Workout Description

Have you gone into the gym with the goal of adding muscle only to fall short?

Did you program hop?

Did you just throw a bunch of exercises together in hopes something would work?

If you did any of these things it gets frustrating real quick. That’s why I put together the Huge in a Hurry Program.

Everything you need and nothing you don’t to add muscle in a hurry.

Huge in a Hurry Workout Overview

Muscle growth happens through three different mechanisms and a tiny bit of black magic. Tension, stress, and damage.

We’ll save the black magic portion for another day.

To increase tension on the muscle you need to add weight to the bar. More specifically 90% of your 1RM or something you can lift for 2-3 reps.

At this weight you are at your sweet spot for muscle tension. This is where the muscular recruitment is at its highest and you won’t burn yourself out by increasing the volume.

Muscular stress aka the infamous “pump” is one of the most commonly known ways to gain muscle. I think it’s safe to assume we’ve all seen that scene of Pumping Iron where Arnold talks about his feelings on the subject.

Getting there requires minimal rest periods (<60 seconds) and hitting it with 12-20+ reps per set. You’re going to want to use 70-80% of your 1RM.

The trick here is to keep the muscle under constant stress. Times like this are great to side step the full range of motion argument and implore a 1/2 rep.

Don’t go all the way down and don’t go all the way to lockout. This will ensure your muscles don’t get a rest and the blood rushing to them will give you the pump of your life.

The final mechanism is muscular damage or emphasizing the lowering phase.

The longer you can prolong the lowering phase of the movement the better. Ideally, you want to aim for 2-4 seconds. A task easier talked about than in actual practice.

Huge in a Hurry Workout Breakdown

Combining these three mechanisms along with eating 200-300 calories more than your BMR will set yourself up for adding muscle in a hurry.

The Huge in a Hurry workout is a 3 day workout so even the busiest of us can have a chance to add some muscle.

  • Day 1 is a muscle tension day where you lift heavy.
  • Day 2 is a muscle stress day where you rep it out.
  • Day 3 is a muscle damage day where all of the lowering phase is emphasized.

If you do these in a different order it might take away from the other. For example, emphasizing the lowering portion before lifting heavy would severely limit the weight you can lift.

Take a day in between workouts to allow for enough rest.

Day 1: Muscle Tension

Exercise Sets Reps
1. Deadlift 8 3
2. Dumbbell Bench Press 6 4
3. Dumbbell Row 6 4
4. Dumbbell Shoulder Press 6 4

Day 1 Rest: 90-120 seconds

Weight: 85-90% of 1RM

Day 2: Muscle Stress

Exercise Sets Reps
1. Squat 3 12
2. Cable Fly 4 12
3. Lat Pull Down 4 12
4. Dumbbell Reverse Fly 3 15
5. Dumbbell Curls 4 12
6. Dips 4 12

Day 2 Rest: <60 seconds

Weight: 65-70% of 1RM

Day 3: Muscle Damage

Exercise Sets Reps
1. Front Squat 5 6
2. Dumbbell Incline Bench 4 6
3. Seated Cable Row 3 8
4. Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3 12
5. Seated Calf Raise 3 20
6. Cable Crunch 4 15

Day 3 Rest: 60-90 seconds

Weight: 70-85% of 1RM

How to Progress with the Huge in a Hurry Workout

This program - as it’s written - is a solid program to do for about three weeks or until your body adapts. So to keep the muscle a-coming, you’ll want to use progressive overload.

After 3-4 weeks, or whenever it starts to get easy, add another set to each exercise. Keep the weight the same. Volume is a great indicator of progress.

After adding two extra sets (Week 9-12), up the weight by 10% and go back to the sets above.

If you have any questions about the workout or want to let me know about your progress, leave a comment below.

Posted on: Thu, 09/22/2022 - 21:29

This is cool. I want to ask and clarify

Let’s say my chest press 1RM is 40kg. I would do 25-30kg for the three reps?

Thank you

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Sat, 09/24/2022 - 09:59

I would say start with 25. Then, if that feels too light, go up to 30. Hope this helps, and best of luck on the program, David!

Posted on: Sat, 03/26/2022 - 22:48

Perfect! I have school and a job, this THREE-day workout split is PERFECT! Thanks.

Jim Beam
Posted on: Mon, 02/28/2022 - 08:32

Hei! I was wondering why there was no barbell bench press, and if we could exchange dumbell benchpress with barbell press to hit heavier weights?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 02/28/2022 - 08:35

Hello! Some trainers prefer the dumbbells because they allow you to use a greater range of motion. That said, the struggle of dumbbells not being heavy enough is real. So, if you need to roll with the barbell, go for it!

Anthony Consiglio
Posted on: Sun, 09/08/2019 - 14:54

My goal is over all strength and size. After week 13 what do you recommend next?

Prasurjya kashyap
Posted on: Wed, 08/28/2019 - 13:33

Hey, I am novice mensphysique athlete. I was stuck at plateau doing my old schedule. Now I started doing this. It's my second week running. Will this routine help me get off plateau and help gain muscle?

Posted on: Tue, 08/06/2019 - 23:37

hi. can i have cardio on rest days along this programe?

Posted on: Mon, 08/05/2019 - 07:54

hi mate.
could i have cardio on rest days between workout days.

Posted on: Sat, 06/29/2019 - 22:43

On day 3 for the calf raises I could not get near to the 3 sets of 20, any advice? There’s been no problems on the other days so far and I have been sticking to the recommended 1RM percentages %

Himanshu Arora
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2019 - 00:22

I have been a runner my whole life.nd I wanna gain gain muscle by bulking it in a lean way what should I do?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2019 - 10:56

Hi Himanshu,

Find a good weight lifting program that you enjoy (and pairs well with running if you plan to continue to run) and eat a diet that creates a slight caloric surplus to fuel muscle growth.

Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2019 - 11:45

You can do this program and increase calories by 100-200 at first.

Posted on: Sat, 06/22/2019 - 07:42

Hey, just to clarify is this a 3 days a week workout plan, or is it a 3 days in a row cycle where you go back to day 1 on day 4? If that makes sense

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2019 - 11:01

Hi Geo,

Either works. As written, I think it's meant to be cycled.

Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2019 - 11:44

It can be done either way all depending on how much time you can commit. That's what it comes down to.
I created this as a 3 day workout, resting the other 4 but if you want to cycle them, feel free.


Posted on: Thu, 05/23/2019 - 15:18

I'm having trouble gaining size. I'm through week 5 and have more definition but haven't gained weight or size. I'm stuck at 165. I eat 3,250 calories a day, 120-130 grams of varied protein, I've cut all cardio before the program, I'm making sure I'm lifting as heavy as I can with clean form. I've been a runner my whole life and now that I'm no longer competing I wanted to gain mass. There's something that I'm surely missing. Any help is appreciated thank you in advance.

Posted on: Sat, 06/01/2019 - 06:18

Hey Andy,

Couple of questions:

How long have you been eating this much?

Are you tracking calories?

What does various forms of protein mean?

You said you cut cardio before the program, does that mean you are doing it after or you stopped cardio all together?

Are you taking measurements of your shoulders, chest and any other area you want to get bigger?


Posted on: Fri, 01/18/2019 - 23:11

Is this also fine on females who wants to gain muscle? I have only access to dumbbells

Posted on: Fri, 01/18/2019 - 22:43

Can female do this also?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 01/21/2019 - 12:27

Hi Jodi,


Michael perkins
Posted on: Thu, 03/08/2018 - 00:42

I only have a bench and dumbells will this work still be affective

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 03/08/2018 - 09:04

Hi Michael,

Sure, you can alter the exercise variation to match the equipment you have access to. That is fine.

Hope this helps!

Posted on: Sun, 02/11/2018 - 07:55

I started this and enjoyed a lot. Had a good pump. Can i add any arm exerxises for day 1 or/and 3?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 02/12/2018 - 08:54

Hi Ras,

Sure, I don't see why not.

Hope this helps!

Posted on: Tue, 02/06/2018 - 13:07

Hey Dave, You've mentioned rest time between sets but what about rest time between exercises?!

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Tue, 02/06/2018 - 13:44

Hi Jeddawy,

Rest periods between exercises are the same as they are between sets.

Hope this helps!

Nick Layman
Posted on: Fri, 02/02/2018 - 12:09

Is it okay to do 2 days back to back? If so which two days do you suggest you do back to back?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 02/05/2018 - 09:31

Hi Nick,

I wouldn't recommend performing 2 of these workouts back to back since they are full body workouts. If you can only commit 2 days to working out because of it, simply rotate through the 3. You should still see some pretty decent results.

Hope this helps!

Dirk Sonive
Posted on: Thu, 01/25/2018 - 08:07

Dave - I have one questions regarding the amount of weight. So for example on day one we do 8 sets of 3 reps for deadlift. The program says 85-90% 1rm. So my questions since we are doing 8 sets, are we increasing weight until we get to our 1rm on set 8, or are we starting out with 1rm and completing 8 sets? I hope that makes sense.

Hiwa Hamwandi
Posted on: Fri, 07/26/2019 - 09:56

i think you are getting it a bit wrong , since it says 85%-90% of your REP-MAX which means if it is 100kg:

0,85*100=85kg 3 times as it says 3 REPS but with 85%-90% of your max depending on what your max is. try to calculate it out , as i did the first sentence i wrote. so 0,90*100=90kg so 90kg's three times..someone correct me if im wrong. :)

Posted on: Wed, 08/07/2019 - 21:37

hi mate. the formula also raises doubts to me. but i skipped and choosed the comfort weight to train the complete set. then i tried to add more in next week. for example, my smr of sqoad is 100kg, but i did not start 85% for 3×8 as 85kg, but i choosed to train 40kg. now i can do squad with 3×8 as 50kg.

Posted on: Thu, 08/08/2019 - 03:10

i think you start set 1 with 85% of smr. for mine i start 80kg through 8 sets.

Eric B
Posted on: Mon, 12/25/2017 - 10:51

Day 1 done. Feeling worn out in a good way (especially from deadlifts). Getting acclimated with the new routine and finding the right weights for each exercise. I added a couple sets of pushups in between bench press sets. Also did 1/4 rep with full rep. Looking forward to Day 2, 3 and the next 11 weeks. I didn't realize how long its been since i changed my routine. This was a nice step back into a schedule. Thanks.

Posted on: Thu, 01/11/2018 - 04:25

No prob Eric, glad you liked it.