“Tried & True” Strength Training Templates

Free Training Program Templates


Below is a compilation of links to training programs and workouts. Please feel free to modify these programs to suit your needs and goals. You can print theses sheets and take them with you to the gym!

All I ask is that you give me credit if you want to share, and that you let me know if you achieved good results! Enjoy!

Beginner’s lifting program – 2-3x per week. 30 minutes. This is my tried and true program I’ve used on 100’s of beginners. It’s not fancy but it is effective. Workouts should take about 30 minutes with some hustle. The video above explains it in great detail and has a couple of workout videos to go with it.

Muscle stimulus/recovery evaluation tool. Here’s a tool for you if you prefer to train intuitively. Track your soreness and recovery.

Progressive Gains Program. My (so far) ultimate lifting program. I believe this system represents my best understanding of periodization for strength and muscle development along with the need for adaptability to individual needs. This is the program I personally follow. Maybe you should too. (Unless you are a beginner, in which case you should follow the beginner’s routine above).

In other words, this is a program for real people who need flexibility and don’t want to overthink their training. I recommend this program for the following reasons:

  • Science-based– This program is built off the principles periodization and progressive overload. It gets tougher as you progress and forces your body to adapt.
  • Flexible– Training frequency in this program ranges from 3x per week to 6x per week. You choose how many days you can handle. With this flexibility, you can back off when you need to (without giving up on a program) or add more when you have the time.
  • Fun– You lift heavy and do some powerlifting. You hit high reps and do some bodybuilding. Exercises and routines change every week. This program changes often enough that you never get burnt out or bored.
  • Proven– I’ve been training others for over 14 years now. I’ve used phases of this training model to transform bodies and train champions. This is training program is the outcome of this experience.


Each week is characterized by its focus and training frequency

WeekDays/WeekFocusRep Range
13strength & power1-5
35strength & size3-8 & 10-20
46bodybuilding10-20 & 6-12

If there are no reasons to train otherwise, follow through week 1-4 and repeat.

However, there may be 2 reasons you wish to go out of order. This is perfectly acceptable. These reasons are:

A. You want to repeat a week that focuses on a specific training goal you have. For example, right now I am building up size so when I run through this program, I try to repeat week #4 once or twice if I am able to continue to add weight to my exercises. If I stall, I’ll start over again on week 1.

B. If schedule demands it, you can always repeat a week with lower training frequency. For example, if you have a busy couple of weeks, you can repeat the week 1 protocol during that time because it has the lowest training frequency of 3 days per week)

Guidelines for Progressive Gains

  • Do not push to absolute failure on exercises unless it is your last set. Leave one or two reps in the tank and rest long enough to repeat sets within you rep range goal (but no longer than 3-5 minutes on low rep stuff and no longer than 2-2.5 minutes on higher rep stuff). Sometimes you just wont hit your target reps and that’s ok. Make a note of it in your training journal. Adjust the weight for the next set if needed.
  • Rest between 1-3 minutes per set, or enough so that you can repeat the next set within your target rep range.
  • Substitute any exercise you want to for a similar exercise. If you don’t know how to squat, bench, and deadlift yet, I recommend learning how eventually.
  • Record the weights that you use. When you repeat a week you can use previous numbers to set new lifting goals.
  • Increase weight every set of every workout- until you are sure you are pushing each set to *almost failure.*
  • If you want to super-set smaller exercises, you can
  • If you want to change the “chest/back-legs-shoulders/arms” split to a “push/pull/legs” split you can.
  • Promise me you will never use your powers for evil. Good luck and enjoy.

Other lifting programs

Intermediate lifting program. 3x per week. 45-60 minutes. I’ve had great success with this program for my clients for weight loss and muscle gain. This is a 12 week program with specific training blocks for endurance, strength and size. Great for bodybuilding and variety.

Bodybuilding program– 6x per week. This program is a bit more flexible. Choose your own reps in a hypertrophy range. Try the PPL sheet or the CB/SA/L sheet for a good muscle building program. As of 12/5/2018 this is the program I’m currently using.

Advanced daily undulating periodization program– 6x per week. 60-90 minutes. This is my pet project routine with a DUP / block periodization style to it. It’s a program I’ve personally used to get big and strong. Not for the faint of heart.

Bodybuilding style DUP program– 4x per week. ~60 minutes (rest 60s between sets). Another version of my DUP project. This one puts some smaller muscle groups at the BEGINNING of the workout to help you bring up some weak points. Calves included.

Jiu Jitsu strength and conditioning program– 2-4x per week. Intermediate. 60 minutes or less. This is a program I wrote for myself to improve at jiu jitsu. You’ll see that the barbell hip thrust is a staple to help you get better at the oopa and there’s some fun conditioning work for your endurance at the end.

Backpacking strength and endurance program– 3x a week lifting and 5x week backpacking training. This is the program I wrote for myself before completing the 500 mile Colorado Trail hike. You’ll need to start this program at least 9 weeks away from your hike to get through the whole thing. But start now even if you don’t have that time, it will still help!

3x a week lifting and 3x a week grip strength for improving at rock climbing. I’ve tested this program out on myself as well as a few other experienced climbers. I was able to move up about 2 bouldering grades in 6 months and the other climbers moved up a sport climbing grade in about the same time. Get after it.

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