Muscle Mass Inflation: 8 Week Muscle Growth Workout

This workout program incorporates an old-school training method and is designed to help you maximize your gains! Muscle Mass Inflation is a muscle building workout that will take you from small to swole.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Split
Beginner
8 weeks
4
45-70 minutes
Barbell, Cables, Dumbbells
Male & Female
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Workout Description

Whether you’re someone who has lost a lot of weight recently or you’re someone who is starting their fitness journey on the smaller side of the scale, many people are primed and ready to grow. The aspirations of getting bigger and stronger is an exciting thought.

All you need is a plan to follow because the energy is already there. While the process of working your way up the shirt sizes (in a good way) takes time, you can definitely hit the ground running and this eight week program could be the ticket you need to start your trip from small to swole.

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High Intensity Training

The workout program that is going to help you maximize those gains is based on an old-school method of training known as High Intensity Training (HIT). This isn’t the cardio system known as HIIT. The weight training version of HIT calls for a minimal amount of work sets while maximizing the effort you give in performing the sets you are going to perform. Among those most famous for using this type of training were past bodybuilding champions Dorian Yates and Mike Mentzer.

Most of the exercises in this program will call for you to perform one or two warm-up sets. You’ll do these with moderate weight that you should be in no danger or reaching failure with. The goal of these sets are to establish a mind-muscle connection, proofread your form, and prepare yourself mentally for those work sets to come. You will rest for two minutes between these sets.

The work sets in this routine are meant for you to perform to failure. Let’s define failure for this particular program. Failure means you can’t perform one more rep with proper form, even if you wanted to. If you have a partner to push you beyond that point, great, then push it for another rep or two.

For those of you that will be training alone, when you reach that point, ask yourself if you have one more in you. If you don’t or can’t answer “yes” with 100% confidence, rack the weight. Training beyond failure would be great if possible but it’s not worth the risk of injury and no one grows muscle while performing rehab or sitting on the couch with an injury.

The rep schemes are meant to serve as the points you reach failure. If you don’t hit these target ranges, make changes as necessary. Rest for three minutes between work sets.

The Workouts

Because of the recent growth of people training at home or under alternative circumstances, these workouts are designed as basic as they can be while being capable of providing an environment for muscle building benefits.

The main items you will need for this program are a rack, bar, bench, some dumbbells or plate-loaded dumbbell handles, and a few resistance bands. If you need to substitute exercises because of the equipment you have, you can search for other choices in the M&S Exercise Guide section.

You’ll notice a lot of compound movements in this plan. The multijoint exercises are the ones that lay the groundwork for growth. There are also a few isolation movements so you can sculpt your masterpiece too. These workouts may be simple but doing them won’t be easy if you do them right. By the time you’re finished you should feel like you’ve done serious work.

Muscle Mass Inflation Day 1: Back and Biceps

Exercise Warm-Up Sets Work Sets Rest
Bent-Over Barbell Row 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 6-8 reps 3min
Pullover 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
One Arm Row 1 x 12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Lat Pulldown 0 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
Barbell Curl 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Seated Hammer Curl 1 x 12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Concentration Curl 0 2 x 10-12 reps 3min

Muscle Mass Inflation Day 2: Shoulders and Abs

Exercise Warm-Up Sets Work Sets Rest
Seated Barbell Press 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 6-8 reps 3min
Single Arm Lateral Raise 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Upright Row 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Rear Lateral Raise 0 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Hanging Leg Raise* 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 10-12 reps* 3min
Weighted Crunch on Decline Bench 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
*Hold top position for 3 counts before lowering

Muscle Mass Inflation Day 3: Legs

Exercise Warm-Up Sets Work Sets Rest
Front Squat 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Frog Squat 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
Single Leg Extension 0 2 x 12-15 reps 3min
Romanian Deadlift 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
Good Morning 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
Single Leg Curl (any version) 0 2 x 12-15 reps 3min
Standing Barbell Calf Raise 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 15 reps 3min
Seated Calf Raise 0 2 x 15 reps 3min

Muscle Mass Inflation Day 4: Chest and Triceps

Exercise Warm-Up Sets Work Sets Rest
Incline Dumbbell Press 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 6-8 reps 3min
Flat Barbell Bench Press 2 x 10-12 reps 2 x 6-8 reps 3min
Floor Dumbbell Fly 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Seated Press Machine* 0 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
Close Grip Bench Press 2 x 8-10 reps 2 of 6-8 reps 3min
Lying Dumbbell Tricep Extension 1 x 10-12 reps 2 x 8-10 reps 3min
Single Tricep Pressdown 0 2 x 10-12 reps 3min
*If training at home, use a band around the back of a bench

The Training Split

This program will follow a weekly training split of two days on, one day off, two days on, and two days off. When it comes to building muscle, rest and recovery are just as important as the training, if not more so, so don’t try to add anything into this. Take those rest days and let that excitement for training build until you get back in the weight room on the scheduled day.

The days listed here are listed as Monday through Sunday but if you need to start your week on a different day, that is no problem. Just make sure you take the days off you’re supposed to.

Monday – Back and Biceps
Tuesday – Shoulders and Abs
Wednesday – Off
Thursday – Legs
Friday – Chest and Triceps
Saturday and Sunday - Off

As the weeks progress, you should notice a gain in strength as well as size. If you’re noticing a weight you were using before isn’t getting the job done now, then either add weight or perform the reps slower so you can still make the movement more challenging.

Cardio

Even though the objective is to build muscle and grow, cardiovascular fitness still matters. The old philosophy used to be that you should do no cardio at all. However, doing cardio at least a couple of times a week helps keep blood moving and will help with both cardiovascular and respiratory system health.

Perform 20 minutes of moderate level cardio two or three times a week either post-training or at a separate time of the day. If you work an active job and feel you don’t need this, then you can skip it but be honest when making that assessment.

Measuring Progress

The scale is one way to measure the progress for obvious reasons but it doesn’t tell the entire story. Use other metrics like clothes sizes, measurements, and take photos of yourself every two weeks to gauge how you’re doing. When you take photos, make sure you do so under the same lighting and the same type of day so all aspects are consistent. This will help you make the most accurate assessment.

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