Many guys out there have actually never worked out a day in their life. This is for them. This is all for all of those who seem to be plagued by injuries in the gym, constantly hitting plateaus, not seeing growth, and many many more. This post is going to be mainly focused on the best beginner workout program, Strong Lifts 5×5, with some highlights on the Ice Cream Fitness 5×5 program.
After working out for almost 10 years trying to feel my way through more workout programs than one can shake a stick at, I was hesitant to start a beginner lifting program. However when you read about the origins of strong lifts 5×5 and why it actually works, it makes you think. The theory is based off of the ancient greek wrestler, Milo from Croton, who trained for the Olympics by carrying a newborn calf everyday. As the calf grew and the weight became heavier, Milo became stronger. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s mentor, Reg Park, was the first to write about this 5×5 program in 1960!
The simplicity of this program may make the average guy who works out 4-6 times a week laugh but at the same time it allows the beginner an easy entrance into weight lifting. Yet somehow they all can benefit from this program. Every workout consists of just 3 workouts and you only workout 3 days a week. Trust me you’ll need these rest days more than you realize. There are two workouts programs that you alternate. Workout A is Squats, Bench Press, and Bent over Rows. Workout B is Squats, Standing Overhead Press, and Deadlifts. Every exercise you do 5 sets of 5 reps except for deadlifts, where you’ll only do 1 set of 5 reps. You will start with extremely light weight for you to focus on your form. However you will be adding weight to every exercise every single time you work out. Quickly you’ll be moving heavy weight! Go to StrongLifts.com for all the details and form tutorials on this incredibly effective program! Don’t forget to download their free app its the best to track your workouts and keep you going with a built in timer.
In addition to this once you feel comfortable with the original strong lifts program there is a program out there that adds accessory lifts too! Funny enough its called Ice Cream Fitness 5×5. Your core workouts will still be the strong lifts workouts and you’ll still increase the weight but now you’ll be adding in curls, tricep movements, abs and more. Here is a simple yet easy to follow guide.
As a tip feel free to incorporate some flexibility, mobility, and massage work on your days off. You’re going to need it. Good luck to all of those who try this. Leave a comment if you’d used either of these programs before.