Become a Monster with these Compound Workouts

compound workoutsMake no mistake about it – if you want to become a monster, compound workouts are how to do it. This is because compound workouts are simply the best, quickest, and simplest way to get as big and strong as possible. If being mistaken for a hulking juggernaut was ever your goal, then check out the below suggestions.

What are Compound Workouts?

Compound workouts are just workouts comprised of nothing but compound movements. These are exercises in which multiple joints have to move in order to perform them, and multiple muscle groups are worked at the same time. Examples include presses (bench and overhead), squats, rows, and deadlifts.

Why do them?

The obvious answer here is the correct one. Because compound movements train more than one muscle group at a time, they allow you to use the most weight. When you can use the most weight, you can build the most strength. And when you couple added strength with sufficient volume and a good diet, that’s how you’ll build the most muscle, the fastest.

At the same time, compound workouts can be very efficient. When you’re not doing as many movements in total, you can get more “bang” for your “buck” in the gym. This is because you can end up training muscle groups more often. Whereas the “standard” Bodybuilding split might only allow you to train a body part once/week, compound workouts can allow you train most body parts 3x every 2 weeks.

Sample Full Body Compound Workouts

This full body routine would be good for the newbie lifter looking to build initial strength or just put on some basic muscular size. Alternate back and forth between each workout on a Mon/Wed/Fri schedule:

Workout A:

  • Standing overhead barbell press – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Palms facing you chins x 50 total reps in as few sets as possible (do inverted rows if you can’t do chins)
  • Dips – 3 x max
  • Deadlift – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Reverse Lunges – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps each side
  • Barbell curls – 3 sets x 10-12 reps

Workout B:

  • bench press – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Reverse grip barbell row – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Incline dumbbell press – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Squat – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Romanian Deadlift – 2 sets x 10-12 reps
  • Lying EZ bar Triceps extensions – 2 x 10-12 reps

Note #1 – Barbell curls and lying triceps extensions aren’t technically “compound” exercises in that they don’t move multiple joints or work multiple muscles at once. However, they’re both good size and strength builders for the arms.

Note #2 – After hitting 10-12 reps on the lying EZ bar triceps extensions, transition immediately into close grip bench press and go for max reps.

An Upper/Lower Split

If you didn’t want to work the entire body every workout, you could instead split your workouts into upper body and lower body. This could also work for the newbie, or the lifter who had some experience, but wanted to still focus on increasing strength and size. Still alternate back and forth between the two sessions on a Mon/Wed/Fri schedule:

Workout A:

  • Seated dumbbell press – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Palms facing you chins x 50 total reps in as few sets as possible (do inverted rows if you can’t do chins)
  • Incline press – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Low pulley rows – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Curls + lying triceps extensions – 3 supersets x 10-12 reps each exercise

Workout B:

  • Deadlift – 3-4 sets x 6-8 reps
  • Leg press – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Split squats – 3-4 sets x 8-10 reps each side
  • Romanian deadlift – 2-3 sets x 10-12 reps
  • Shrugs – 2-3 sets x 8-10 reps

If size and strength are you goal, then compound workouts are the way to go about it. Lift heavy, stick to basic exercises, and always be putting more weight on the bar. Add a good diet plus plenty of rest, and you’ll see gains fast.

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