Rapidly build size and strength with this powerbuilding 5 day split which focuses on strength building power sets, and crazy-intense burn sets. You have been warned!
Workout Summary

Workout Description

For more information on the Power, Muscle and Burn training system, check out the 4 Day Power Muscle Burn Workout Split.

This 5 day split is for intermediate lifters who are hungry for rapid size and strength gains. You will notice that deadlift is separated from the back workout day, and grouped with hamstring training. This is a very effective approach, and will allow you to not only blast your back and hamstrings, but also increase your deadlift max. Also, by grouping deadlifts with Romanian deadlifts, you will be hitting your lower back one less training day per week, which is always a good thing.

The Power Muscle Burn System

My Power Muscle Burn training system will help you build muscle and strength by focusing on three different training approaches, all used in the same workout. You will be performing the following types of sets for each muscle group:


You will perform power sets to lead off the workout. Power sets are performed in the 3 to 5 rep range. Use the same weight for each of the sets. When you can perform 5 reps for all power sets, move up in weight. Major muscle groups will perform 2-4 power sets per workout, and minor muscle groups will perform 2 power sets per workout. Please note that for some minor muscle groups, power sets do not make sense, or they are not realistic. For example, it is difficult to perform extremely heavy resistance abdominal sets.


Muscle sets are performed in the 6 to 12 rep range. Use the same weight for each of the sets. When you hit the upper rep limit of 12 for all muscle sets, move up in weight. Major muscle groups will perform 4-6 total muscle sets in each workout, using 2 different exercises. Minor muscle groups will perform 2-4 total muscle sets in each workout, using 1 to 2 exercises. You can also perform a single exercise for 3 sets.


You will perform 1-2 burn sets for each muscle group - generally using isolation movements. Pick a weight that allows you to hit 15 to 20 reps, and then perform 40 total reps. How? Do as many reps as possible, then take a slight rest and perform more reps. Rest only long enough to regain the energy and willpower to perform 1 to 3 more reps. Keep pushing yourself through the pain until you hit 40 total reps. When you can hit 25+ reps from the start without stopping, add weight. Major muscle groups will utilize 1-2 burn sets, minor muscle groups will use 1-2 burn sets.

Power Muscle Burn Notes

  • Failure - I do not recommend training to failure. Try to perform each set until you feel like you may fail on the next rep, then stop. It's ok if you occasionally fail on a set, but do not purposely try to train to failure on every set.
  • Progression - You must have the goal of progressing on every set of every workout. Sets performed with a half-hearted effort are wasted. If you lack energy or are pressed for time, it's better to perform fewer quality sets then it is to waste sets.
  • Small Tweaks - What if I don't like training in the 6 to 12 rep range, and want to train in the 6 to 10 rep range? Then train in the 6 to 10 rep range. What if I don't like training in the 3 to 5 rep range? Then train in the 4 to 6 rep range. 40 burn reps are too difficult!? Then aim for 30 burn reps. Note: small tweaks are ok, as long as you are using the core mechanisms of this program. Don't obsess about the details - obsess about moving weight and getting bigger!
  • Alternating Exercises - It is not a bad idea to alternate exercises every other week. You can't possibly fit every exercise into every workout. For example: for muscle sets you could hit dumbbell bench presses one week and chest dips the next week.
  • Total Sets - It is better to start with the minimal amount of sets, and build in to this routine by adding sets if you find you need more work.
  • Calves - Please note that there are no power sets for calves. I am not convinced that calves respond effectively to lower rep training.
  • Quads - If you love pain, you can do a single 20 rep set of squats for your quad burn work.

5 Day Power Muscle Burn Split

The 5 Day Power Muscle Burn Powerbuilding split:

Note: This is a sample template. Feel free to "swap" in any appropriate (and favorite) exercises.

Day 1 - Chest and Triceps

Exercise Sets Reps
Bench Press - Power 2-4 3 to 5
Incline Bench Press  - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Dumbbell Bench Press - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Dumbbell Flys - Burn 1 40
Closegrip Bench Press - Power 2 3 to 5
Seated French Press  - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Cable Tricep Extension - Burn 1 40

Day 2 - Back and Traps

Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Rows - Power 2-4 3 to 5
Dumbbell Rows  - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Lat Pull Down - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Seated Cable Row - Burn 1 40
Power Barbell Shrugs - Power 2 3 to 5
Dumbbell Shrugs  - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Power Barbell Shrugs - Burn 1 40

Day 3 - Quads and Calves

Exercise Sets Reps
Squat - Power 2-4 3 to 5
Leg Press  - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Front Squat - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Leg Press - Burn 1 40
Seated Calf Raise - Muscle 2 10 to 15
45 Degree Calf Raise  - Burn 2 40

Day 5 - Shoulders and Biceps

Exercise Sets Reps
Seated Barbell Press - Power 2-4 3 to 5
Seated Arnold Press  - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Barbell Front Raise - Muscle 2 6 to 12
Dumbbell Lateral Raise - Burn 1 40
Pinwheel Curls - Power 2 3 to 5
Standing Barbell Curl  - Muscle 2-3 6 to 12
Cable Preacher Curl - Burn 1-2 40

Day 6 - Deadlift and Hamstrings

Exercise Sets Reps
Deadlift - Power 2-4 3 to 5
Romanian Deadlift - Muscle 3-4 6 to 12
Leg Curl  - Muscle 3-4 6 to 12
Leg Curl - Burn 1 40


Posted on: Fri, 01/11/2013 - 18:58

Should I switch up the order of my routine every month?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 01/23/2013 - 16:05


Posted on: Fri, 01/11/2013 - 01:46

Swapped biceps and triceps days, worked beautifully. My close grip bench press went up 20 pounds. Maybe when my tri's are stronger I can move triceps back with chest, but for the mean time, the bench press, dumbell bench, and incline bench, kills my triceps and makes my following tricep workout a joke.

Karim Bennis
Posted on: Tue, 01/08/2013 - 11:09

Hello Steve,

I would like to know in how much time am I going to see the results ? Is this a good workout for building muscle ? I'm looking looking only for muscle growth and i do not know if this is the appropriate workout for me.

Thank You !

Posted on: Tue, 01/08/2013 - 10:05

Could I swap the Chest and Shoulder day around so I do Shoulder and Tri's together, then Chest and Bi's together?

Posted on: Mon, 01/07/2013 - 14:26

can I replace dumbbell fly with cable fly

Posted on: Mon, 01/07/2013 - 14:21

Hey Steve,
Now I haven't read all of the comments but coming from a girl would this workout benefit me for burning fat as well? Also, would it be okay to complete my cardio in the morning and then the workout in the afternoon?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Mon, 01/07/2013 - 14:58

Yes - you would simply adjust your diet for fat-loss. As long as you have enough energy for your afternoon workout, early morning cardio is fine.

Posted on: Mon, 01/07/2013 - 09:06

Hi, would like to know if i can use this workout while trying to loss the excess fats.

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 01/09/2013 - 12:51

Certainly! Fat-loss will be dependent on your diet. Here is a helpful fat-loss guide:

Posted on: Fri, 01/04/2013 - 08:46

Hi Steve,

I have a couple of questions...
1. Are the weights to remain the same for all sets of each exercise, or to progress each set? I have had success with both, but wondering what the intention of this program was?
2. Any recommendations on diet for this program? Extra carbs before/after workout?


Posted on: Thu, 01/03/2013 - 23:15

Steve, I have been trying this routine for about two weeks now. I am very impressed so far. Previously, I have never done a squat in my life and have mainly just done the upper body. I have incorporated all of the exercises you suggested and feel much better about myself.

Being a 22 yr old male, would only lifting each muscle group once per week be more beneficial than twice a week?

Posted on: Thu, 01/03/2013 - 20:51

Hey Steve, I just started this routine when i got back from leave. Is the long rest neccessary? I did bench press power set with 225 to start, and find a medium, did that 5 times, bumped it up to 245 did that 5 times with a little more challenge and only a 1 min max rest if that. Then i bumped it up again 5 lbs more and did another set for 3. I must say tho the program is a great routine from what i have seen so far, especially since i have not been doing one. I hit the gym twice in a day, before and after work to try and catch up on the program as i was out of the gym for a week and half. Far as the front squat what is recomended for replacing as it is a form required type lift, and i rather not injure myself.

todd reese
Posted on: Wed, 01/02/2013 - 23:41

i like the workout iam going to start it on when i get back

Posted on: Wed, 01/02/2013 - 13:19

Hi steve
Can I change the burn sets with triple dropsets?


terence ntuba ntuba
Posted on: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 11:46

hello man ,
i am a builder too from cameroon;i will desire you list the required minimal weight to begin with in each workout and time to recover.also a 24 hours recovery after a absolute workout might also be good.
thank you

Posted on: Tue, 12/25/2012 - 16:17

Will this maximize the muscle gains ill get? because i dont really care that much for strength but for maximize muscle gains on a bulk

Posted on: Fri, 12/21/2012 - 10:40


Is there anything i can or should add to these workouts or should i just leave these as is, i always feel like this isnt enough, like focusing on some aspects of the body only once a week


Posted on: Fri, 12/21/2012 - 01:52

Hey steve,
I ride about an hour everyday to and from work, the ride is pretty intense with a few big inclines. Just wondering if I should alter the legs workouts at all?

Posted on: Mon, 12/17/2012 - 06:10

hey steve, i do about an hour a day of intense bike riding to and from work, just wondering if i should ease off on the legs workouts or do it as listed?

Posted on: Mon, 12/17/2012 - 02:52

What are the best supplements to be on during this work out ?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Wed, 12/19/2012 - 16:41

Hey Chad!

It's very difficult to give advice on this, as it's incredibly dependent on your diet and lifestyle. You'd want to make sure that whole foods are, by far, the majority of your daily calorie intake. Aside from that, I'd generally recommend a quality whey protein for a post workout shake, a multivitamin, fish oil, and creatine. Pre-workout supplements aren't for everybody, but you could certainly look into them.

Posted on: Sat, 12/15/2012 - 12:03

Hey Steve, I am a pretty skinny person at 5'10" 140 pounds. I have done a lot of reading about bodybuilding for powerlifting. I am trying to gain muscle mass. Therefore I should be sticking to 6-12 reps. I was wondering will the burn sets on this routine help in my body building..or should I stick to the general rule of 6-12 reps for 3 or so sets?

Posted on: Fri, 12/14/2012 - 13:44

What would an alternate workout be for a Leg Press?

Posted on: Fri, 12/21/2012 - 10:53

leg press is quite a big movement, not as much as squats but still pretty big, so any squat if poss, hack squats, normal squats, dumbbell squats, could even try lunges, not the same thing but still a great leg workout if done correctly, don't substitute with leg curl and leg extension as they're isolation and don't hit the legs in the same way

Posted on: Fri, 12/14/2012 - 10:35

Hi Steve...I don't see any ab exercise added in this. can you suggest in 4 or 5 day routine.

Posted on: Thu, 12/13/2012 - 11:56

hey steve

i have been training for years but not seeing the results i want i am bulky but alot of fat thats not going. i want to get ripped is this the best rountine for me?? thankx

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 12/13/2012 - 12:39

The benefit of a routine like this will be that it will help you to maintain as much muscle as possible while losing weight. Your fat-loss will be dependent on your diet. Here is a helpful guide:

Posted on: Sun, 12/09/2012 - 20:55

Hello, I am looking for a 6 day a week muscle building program. Do you have any suggestions?

Thank you

Posted on: Sun, 12/09/2012 - 07:55

Does the amount of rest time differ between muscle and powers sets?

Posted on: Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:50

Can I switch lat pull downs with pull ups?

craig beddows
Posted on: Sat, 12/08/2012 - 07:43

ive just done the first workout (chest+tricep),and ive never felt a burn like it! ill be switching my routine now with this complete routine. thanks guys!

Posted on: Wed, 12/05/2012 - 21:03

Thank u this is by far the best rotune I have followed and made great progress from, I am two weeks in the rotune and am already getting plenty of compliments I just want to say THANK U

Posted on: Mon, 12/03/2012 - 16:49

Hi Steve, I was wondering maybe you can do Back and Bi's together and do Traps together with some other group? And what about stuff like T-Bar Row and the hammer strength pull-back thing for back days. You think they should be added?

Mike Lewi
Posted on: Mon, 12/03/2012 - 08:06

This workout is awesome! I've already put on 3kg in 4 weeks.
Just one question: I can progress (add weight or reps) on the MUSCLE and BURN sets but I can't yet on the POWER sets. Got any tips on how to do so?

Posted on: Sat, 12/01/2012 - 23:09

Hey Steve,

I'm loving the look of this routine but right now I'm looking to lose weight. I'm 6'2 and about 260 and looking to lose about 40 pounds. I was just wondering if this is an effective routine for someone looking to lose weight?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 12/06/2012 - 10:39

Yes - Your weight loss will be dependent on your diet. 

Bashir Al
Posted on: Fri, 11/30/2012 - 00:29

Hey Steve, I have double jointed shoulders and whenever I do Seated French Press it just pops out of the socket no matter what weight I do have you got any idea what I could do instead? please any response is greatly appreciated.

Posted on: Thu, 11/29/2012 - 14:23

will this routine work well with hiit training and fat loss?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 11/29/2012 - 18:36

Hey Derek! You can certainly include HIIT training in your overall routine. Fat loss is directly linked to your diet. If your goal is to lose fat, make sure you have a grasp on your caloric needs and adjust your diet accordingly. Check out this tool to help establish your daily intake:


Posted on: Wed, 11/28/2012 - 21:32

I'm looking to start doing this routine. I was just wondering if you intended for the workouts to be done in any certain order. For example if I was doing the shoulders and bicep workout would I do all of the shoulder exercises in order and THEN move on to the Bicep exercises or would I want to go 1 shoulder exercise and then 1 bicep exercise and so on like that.

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Thu, 11/29/2012 - 18:42

Hey Kevin! I recommend that you stick with the order in the workout. If you were to switch between muscle groups, there would be too much rest time involved. The goal with any workout is to tax your body, and with the extended rest periods if you were to switch muscle groups like that, you're less likely to promote gains.

Posted on: Tue, 11/27/2012 - 19:21

Hi. I'm an advanced bodybuilder with 12 years experience, would this be good for me?
I normally do 5 exercises on on chest, back, legs and shoulders with 3 exercises on triceps and biceps and calfs.
4 day split. Thanks

Posted on: Tue, 11/27/2012 - 13:35

Hi,i training over 14 years,i am 30 years old.i try this program but is too low for me! My messure is 188cm high and 87kg. I wont more muscle.which program do you recomanded to me?

Posted on: Tue, 11/27/2012 - 07:19

Hey Steve, can i replace cable preacher with something else? In my GYM we dont have such machine, can i replace it with Standing up cable pull? I stand and pull the bar like that...


Posted on: Fri, 12/21/2012 - 10:58

a good alternate for cable preacher if u haven't got a preacher bench is to crouch on the floor with your knees in front of you and curl off the front of them with the cable machine, so your still getting the isolation..

Posted on: Mon, 11/26/2012 - 19:48

I started today this workout!! It feels great ! I have one doubt though...how many minutes of rest between sets of same exercise ?

Posted on: Sun, 11/25/2012 - 23:29

hi steve

how long will the routine take until i start seeing results? im a skinning bloke....

Posted on: Sat, 11/24/2012 - 09:31

Hey...! Your training Split doesn't include the abs exercises, can I squeeze them in DAY 4 & 7(off days) ?

M&S Team Badge
Posted on: Tue, 11/27/2012 - 13:46

You can work abs whenever you'd like.