Men's Programs | Weight Training Programs

Men’s Plateau Buster



Description

The 9-week Men’s Plateau Buster weight training program is designed to:

  • Train all of your major muscle groups
  • Build muscle in the 9–11 and 6–8 rep ranges, and build strength in the 3–5 rep range
  • Strengthen your core and primal movement patterns
  • Introduce you to the pre-exhaustion intensity training protocol
  • Help you to break out of plateaus and keep making progress

The program consists of three workouts (A, B, and C). Workout A will train your back, biceps, and core; Workout B will train your chest, shoulders, and triceps; and Workout C will train your legs and core.

In weeks 1, 4, and 7, you will train in the 9–11 rep range (muscle); in weeks 2, 5, and 8, you will train in the 6–8 rep range (muscle); and in weeks 3, 6, and 9, you will train in the 3–5 rep range (strength).

The exercises in each workout have been arranged in accordance with the pre-exhaustion protocol, which will ensure that your prime mover muscles are partially exhausted by isolation exercises before you move on to the major compound exercises. The pre-exhaustion is intended to boost muscular overload and amplify the stimulus for development, thus increasing the program’s chances of helping you to ‘bust’ through plateaus and keep making progress. You can also use the program as an additional and advanced Muscle and Strength mesocycle (‘Muscle and Strength 4’).

Please read the Overview of men’s weight training programs before you start this program.

Suitability

  • Individuals who have completed the Muscle and Strength 3 program
  • Anyone who has at least 12 months of consistent weight training experience

Instructions

  • Complete the workouts (A, B, and C) in the order presented
  • The recommend workout schedules are ABCX (i.e. three days on, one day off) or ABCXABX (i.e. three days on, one day off, two days on, one day off, and then continue the sequence from where you left off)
  • Perform the exercises in the order presented
  • During muscle weeks, rest for 30 to 90 seconds between sets and 1 to 2 minutes between exercises
  • During strength weeks, rest for 2 to 5 minutes between sets and 1 to 2 minutes between exercises
  • Always use a weight that is heavy enough to make the reps challenging
  • Whenever you have to increase the weight, add a maximum of 5 lb (or 2.5 kg) to upper-body exercises or 10 lb (or 5 kg) to lower-body exercises
  • Try to master the proper form of each exercise, including proper breathing technique. Also, try to develop a mental connection with your muscles and with the movement patterns
  • If you get bored of an exercise, see the Overview of men’s weight training programs for alternatives
  • If training at home in the absence of cable machines and other specialized equipment, see below the exercise tables for exercise alternatives
  • Don’t forget to warm up before, and stretch after, each workout
  • Once you have completed the Men’s Plateau Buster, you must take a deload week. Only then can you repeat the program or one of the other programs
Workout A (Back, biceps, core)
ExerciseSets x Reps
Muscle weeksStrength weeks
Weeks 1, 4, 7Weeks 2, 5, 8Weeks 3, 6, 9
Cable straight-arm pull-down2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Pull-up with dumbbell between feet2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Seated twisting cable row2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Bent-over barbell row with underhand grip3 x 9–113 x 6–83 x 3–5
Dumbbell concentration curl2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
EZ bar curl2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Wheel rollout3 x 10–153 x 15–203 x 15–20
Bicycle crunch3 x 20–253 x 25–303 x 30–35
Dumbbell side bend2 x 20–252 x 15–202 x 10–15
Workout B (Chest, shoulders, triceps)
ExerciseSets x Reps
Muscle weeksStrength weeks
Weeks 1, 4, 7Weeks 2, 5, 8Weeks 3, 6, 9
Dumbbell fly2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Incline reverse-grip dumbbell bench press2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Barbell bench press3 x 9–113 x 6–83 x 3–5
Alternating dumbbell front raise2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Barbell shoulder press2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Reverse dumbbell fly2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Cable face pull3 x 9–113 x 6–83 x 6–8
Overhead barbell triceps extension2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Triceps dip with dumbbell between feet2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Workout C (Legs and core)
ExerciseSets x Reps
Muscle weeksStrength weeks
Weeks 1, 4, 7Weeks 2, 5, 8Weeks 3, 6, 9
Leg extension2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 6–8
Barbell hip thrust2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Barbell squat3 x 9–113 x 6–83 x 3–5
Seated or lying leg curl2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Twisting hyperextension holding plate against chest2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 6–8
Barbell Romanian deadlift2 x 9–112 x 6–82 x 3–5
Machine seated calf raise2 x 20–252 x 15–202 x 10–15
Machine standing calf raise3 x 20–253 x 15–203 x 10–15
Weighted captain’s chair leg and hip raise3 x 9–113 x 6–83 x 6–8

Alternatives for the cable/machine exercises



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