Best Training Programs For Beginners: weight/calistehnics - THE COMPLETE GUIDE

Best Weight Training Programs For Beginners (2021)

It is difficult for most beginners to find optimal training programs for them; yet it is easy to find some completely trash programs to mess up their gains.

Previously in this article, I have talked about one of the most atrocious mistakes that most beginners make: it’s training with a shitty program; one of its training method is bro-split, which is worthless for making good gains & can even destroy your progress overtime.

Trust me, you wouldn’t want to jump on a program that is a fucking bum to your first 1-3 years; and if you do, prepare to regret and grieve. In that case, you should always look for training programs that works best for you, both calisthenics and lifting.

A good training program is the key to making guaranteed, fast and optimal muscle & strength gains during your first few years. During these years, noob gains are your opportunities; you’ll recover like steroids and make most of your good gains quick with good programs, nutrition & recovery.

However, I can understand that most of you have barely any knowledge to start with; you wouldn’t like to find a good program by yourself. Plus, most so called “best training programs for beginners” in Google are saturated with shitty splits, or strength training programs that will make you plateau quick. You can try some of them, but I can assure that you’ll find disappoint sooner or later.

How about let me do it for you? I’ll give you some of the best, most efficient beginners training programs you can ever find for free in the Internet; they will help you explode your gains and progress. Based on my experience as a former beginner and learning journey in fitness industry for several years. I can hand you the best shits with no bullshits whatsoever.

What Are Best Criterias For Effective Beginners Training Programs?

You are going to learn some fundamentals about choosing progress that works best for you, as a beginner; as well as some fundamental training sciences & knowledge must you understand if you are in the game for long-term.

Overview, these are:

  • Training frequency up to 2-3x/week.
  • Heavy compound exercises for building strength.
  • Good for natural recovery.
  • Realistic expectations.

Training Frequency Up To 2-3x/Week

As a beginner trainer, the best frequency to make fast and strong gains is two or three times of every muscle group being target every week. The more frequencies you train your muscles, the more protein synthesis you’ll get to build strength & muscles; as protein synthesis peaks around 24-48 hours of training only.

This is why when giving the bro-split crappy worthless shits to beginner lifters are serious crimes. The very common bro-split advice is that: training each muscle group heavily once a week. And then you get a program that focuses on hitting chest in Monday, arms in Tuesday, back in Wednesday, … or whatever; with a day lots of exercises (mostly isolation) for that sole muscle group and you train around 5-6 day/week.

The thing is if you keep going balls to walls with that shit for weeks and months, you’ll feel like shit; once a week every muscle group isn’t enough for natural lifters. So, not only you’ll make little gains, but you will get constantly fatigued and under-recovered. It makes no fucking sense whatsoever.

Here’s the truth: bro-split program works if you are on steroids; steroids stimulates higher protein synthesis. And most of the jacked guys who give you advice in bro-split are probably in shit-load of drugs.

Instead of training bro-split; I’d rather recommend you to find a good routine that allows you to hit all your muscle groups two to three times a week. Some of these are: Full-body training, Upper/Lower training, …

Heavy Compound Exercises For Building Strength

Bench Press 185.

As a beginner, you should focus on building strength as much as focusing on building muscle. Getting strong is equivalent to getting big and jacked; this wisdom is time-tested, and if some so-called experts against it much be the biggest frauds and morons of fitness industry ever.

Training for strength will recruit and strengthen more fast-twitch muscle fibers, which are mostly within major muscle groups like chest, quads, hamstrings, back & shoulder. Good training programs for beginners must always consist of few days where you focus on lifting heavy weights.

And best exercises for building strength? Are major compound lifts: Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift, Barbell Row, Shoulder Press; a good program must consist at least 2-3 of these lifts in it.

Compound lifts train lots of muscle of the same time also helps strengthen the nervous system to lift heavier weights; and will also increase testosterone, growth hormone & IGF-1 levels which are important for recovery and muscle building. Squat is probably the most effective among all.

It’s just simple.

If you want to build more muscles, build strength.

Good For Natural Recovery

Working out as beginners is like working out on steroids. When your body is making new adaptations to muscular growth, you’ll make muscle gains extremely quick if you are in the right track. Your recovery from previous workout sessions are almost instant after a rest day.

That being said, you would want to train with a program that allows you to recover quicker, so you can progress more in the next training sessions; if a program that constantly fatigues you after every workout, then you should consider switching it. This is why 5-6x day bro-split program is mostly worthless or letting beginners trying to set up their programs when they don’t know shit is pure dogshit.

Here’s a basic knowledge in training you should know:

  • When you train, your muscle lean tissues breakdown and create tears after hard training; that’s why you feel sore, tired and fatigued after workout. This is catabolic state; during this state, cortisol (stress hormone) is high.
  • And when you rest, your muscles repair their damages from previous workout with nutrition and hormones like testosterone, insulin & growth hormone; your central nervous system also recovers from fatigue and strengthens its neuromuscular activation the next time you train. This is anabolic state.

The more anabolic you are, the more completed is your recovery; therefore allows you to get stronger. Those who train in the bro-split program can recovers fast are on shit-loads of anabolic steroids which allows them to recover fast. But if you are a natural, forget it.

A good training program for beginner & natural lifters should have more rest days. This is why 2-3x day full-body workout is simply superior; since you have to train hard all your body parts in three days and have more rest days in between, allows more recovery and protein synthesis.

Realistic Expectations

Yearly muscle gain chart
Sources: Legion Athletics

The last but not least, as a beginner, you should learn to be consistent with your training and set realistic expectations.

You should give every program at least 3-6 months to work for you, and know that within these months what kind of progress are you going to make. Surely, within 3 months of training you won’t be looking like your favorite Instagram model; within 6 months and you ain’t no bodybuilder get disqualified from amateur competition.

But you can notice changes in your slight muscle definitions and less fat; you’ll see yourself more fit, got some decent muscles and probably some visible abs; just not looking like an insanely aesthetic muscular alpha dude. You’ll gain some decent amount of strength within 3-6 months; you can probably bench more than 1-2 plates, squat 2-3 plates, deadlift 3-4 plates.

There’s no shortcut, for every program to work you need time. Stay away from programs that promise you a great “beach body” or whatever within 4-6 weeks and then give you some bullshit splits with poor exercise selection.

Best Training Programs For Beginners – Lifting Weights

Whether bodybuilding or powerlifting, either one of these programs in your preference, will blow up your progress as beginner trainers; one of these also have been used by me for busting out my noob gains quick.

1. Alpha Destiny’s Novice Program: Best For Building Strength & Muscles Fast

This program is the one I used during my first 5 months of gaining my strength fast as a beginner. It is the absolute fucking beast for me, I gained the strength in my lifts very fast, that I had never before in my years of training.

Most of my training years were inconsistent and getting plateaued constantly in worthless split programs and I regretted it; and this program definitely saved my ass. It is the best beginner program I can think of right now.

Within 5 months, I’ve noticed gaining more size and I look bigger than before, some of my muscle insertions become more visible; my compound lift’s techniques and forms improved, and my major lifts went up from:

  • Bench Press: 145×1 – 195×1.
  • Close Grip Bench Press: 105×8 – 175×2.
  • Paused Overhead Press: 95×4 – 125×4.
  • Pendlay Row: 135×6 – 185×6.
  • Squat: 155×5 – 275×5.
  • Deadlift: 175×5 – 325×5.

With that being said, I believe this is the best weight training program for beginners by far. Personally and professionally.

How Does It Work?

Alpha Destiny Novice Training Program For Beginners

If you hop in this routine for your first 6 months; you will notice changes, noticeably your size and strength. As this program is designed to promotes general strength, with decent hypertrophy in huge muscle groups; elevates more protein synthesis & more recovery.

How? If you have already checked out the program, you know it is a 3-day full body split training; with decent amounts of sets and rep ranges for major compound lifts for building strength. This program has very weird choices of compound lifts:

  • The Box Squat in the program is for building strong & explosive posterior chain muscles’s foundation and allows the central nervous system to recover faster.
  • Floor Press helps you build dead-stop explosive strength in your chest muscles; Either that, or doing Paused Bench Press can do the same, but it will be more difficult and taxing to recovery due to full range of motion.
  • Trap Bar Deadlift can allows you to lift more weights, easier to perfect your deadlift technique, has greater emphasis on either posterior chain or lower back, and less taxing to your recovery.

If you don’t like these exercise choices, you can modify it; but you should read the creator’s FAQ below the program first before you doing anything. Otherwise, stick to the original program and its guidelines for more guaranteed results. Personally, I do Standard Back Squats, Paused Bench & Conventional Deadlift instead.

The 3-day split of this program must be trained with one-day on, and one-day off; commonly Monday/Wednesday/Friday, or Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday. Then, the Day A,B of the workout is trained interchangeably in between days. (See more in the program’s FAQ).

Expectations

The Alpha Destiny’s Novice Training Program is indeed, made for beginners. The creator, Alpha Destiny, who is also a very experienced and professional natural dude in fitness industry; designs the program which allows you to make good linear progress and good recovery.

Within the first year of training, you can expect to gain 10-20 pounds of muscles and gain shit tons of strength to get with; maybe more with elite genetics. He also expect you to at least bench 225×5 (2 plates); squat 315×5 (3 plates); deadlfift 405×5 (4 plates) after 6-18 months of disciplined, consistent training & recovery. It may sounds insane, but it’s mostly true.

Yet, it would be more realistic if you shoot the strength standards for your relative bodyweight instead. For example, a guy who is 135lbs, would not bench 225×5 (1.6x BW) after a year on this program; unless he bulks quick or have good genetics, the progress wouldn’t be linear and he transits into intermediate stage; which program modifications and training must be more strict and intense to get to.

It depends on you, either you choose the numerical standards; or shoot more realistically with relative bodyweight standards: 1 – 1.5x BW in bench press; 1.5 – 2x BW in squat; 2 – 2.5x BW in deadlift. Or until one of your body part cannot make linear progress after weeks. Then you are no longer novice.

After that, you can consider moving up to a 100% intermediate training regime, or try the next one …

(*Note: If you are an advanced lifter has not been in the gym for few months and lost strength; you can use this program for few months and your base strength gains will blow up really fast. After that, you’ll get plateau quick, so you can transit back to your old training.)

2. Alpha Destiny’s Novice/Intermediate Hybrid Program: Beyond Beginners Training Program

Alpha Destiny Novice/Intermediate Program

This is an another version of the Alpha Destiny’s Novice Program; this training program is for beginners who are almost intermediate. You train this program to milk all of the possible noob gains on linear progression efficiently before transits into intermediate levels.

If you are already intermediate in the upper body part, but not the lower body, this program is for you and vice versa. Right now I am beginning with this program to get up my lagging upper body part again, which I believe it is already intermediate, since my bench press barely made any progress after weeks & weeks.

Do I think this is going to work? Of course, why not.

It is the same program & principles, with few adjustments to beat your plateaus.

How Does It Work?

Basically, this program has two session: one for the upper body emphasis and one for the lower body emphasis.

For Upper Body Emphasis, if you’ve already hit 225×5 in the bench press, or cannot make linear progression on it; you’re already intermediate in this body part. This mean you’ll have to train this section of the program to continue make gains on the bench press, while also making gains on the lower body lifts since they are still novice.

Meanwhile, for Lower Body Emphasis, if you’ve already hit 315×5 in squat, 405×5 in deadlift, or cannot make linear progression on it; you’re already intermediate in this part. So, the exact logic is also applied the same.

Hence, this is still your training program for beginners, but nearly intermediate; you will continue to make progress with both novice and intermediate body parts, so neither is stalled. Which is why it’s called “hybrid.”

The training program has few modifications, with exercises and training methods. Specifically utilizing the Texas Method: which is volume day of major lifts in first day of the week, lighter loads for recovery the second day & heavy intensity the third day. Because of your linear progression taps out after novice phase; you’ll have to implement different methods to make more progress, but not as much as during the novice phase.

Expectations

You’ll definitely make progress for both muscle and strength gains. Once you tap the novice phase either one of two major parts of your body; and the progress for the intermediate parts will be more slower overtime, that’s just law of diminishing returns – the more time & effort put in, the progress get exponentially slower.

But save that until you train consistently for decades. As early years of lifting, you should be able to make more progress anyways; for the first few years, you should choose optimal training programs for beginners.

Rant aside, you can expect to make more strength progress in your intermediate parts; while also making progress with novice parts until they pass the novice stages. Until when all of your body parts hit the expected strength standards or cannot make more linear progression. Consider switching to intermediate training then.

Because you’ve milked almost all of your noob gains with this program; you can expect a very decent physique with decent size and strength then; for most average lifters, you’ll look good and perhaps better than most beginner lifters who struggle with shitty bro-split programs then.

Conclusion: Best Training Programs For Beginners

Pepe Lifting

You’ve got what I’ve given you in this article; the fundamentals & programs that work best for your journey as a beginner. When you start, always choose a program that works best for you in your first few years; these times are gold opportunities to actually reap the life-changing result you’ve always wanted and shouldn’t be wasted in dogshit programs that are worthless for your goals.

However, keep in mind that having a good program is just a start; when it comes to training, you requires discipline & consistency to grind through the pains, the mental struggles and the clapped little bitch inside you to stay strong and keep making progress.

Aside from that, always pay attention to your own recovery and nutrition; get enough fats, carbs, proteins & necessary micronutrients to optimize your muscle growth, well-being & testosterone; get enough deep sleep, drink enough water, relax, stretch, do whatever the fuck you can that makes you feel better. Once you nail all these aspects, get ready to explode your noob gains like crazy; and then keep pushing for few more years if you feel passionate about training.

This article is the list of best training programs I believe for any beginner lifters who want to make guaranteed, quick muscle and strength gains within their first few years. I’ll always keep this updated when I get more useful information and actually good routines.

For now, that’s all.

Get your ass up and grind, stay focused, stay strong, and I’ll be seeing you later,

Juhani.

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