That's my plan - every week, at least two of the following:

  • gym, one round of upper body pushing and pulling, leg workout in the 6 reps/3 sets range (edited to add: all isolation movements) + core
  • park, jogging, explosive strength (hill sprints, knee tucks, clap-hands pushups etc.), core
  • park, jogging, strength endurance (pushups, squats, pullups when they are no longer a max strength thing for me), core
  • park, jogging and conditioning (20-30 min high intensity stuff like intervalls, burpees etc.)
  • Yoga and/or pilates
  • long bike ride

The strength endurance part and the conditioning can become a finisher after one of the other sets (preferably which one?) when I'm fitter.

I've only given a few exercises for each block, of yourse I plan to mix it up a bit. For everythin outside thy gym I plan to stick to Ross Enamaits Never Gymless for exercises.

The goal is overall fitness and functional strength. I'm not sure why I'd want more muscle mass. Losing weight wouldn't hurt me but is not a big concern for me now. I don't have much time or discipline, so more exercise would be hard and I need to spice things up to keep me interested.

Edit 2.6.12

Obviously I need to state my goals and the state I'm in clearer: I'm in my early thirties, work in an office and have been doing muaythai on and off for the last ten years, as well as a bit of general fitness stuff like running and bodyweight exercises, or yoga. For a few months now, I go to a gym more or less regularley (where I up to now follow their advice, doing all the exercises in 3x15 sets. So far I noticed hardly any success (only on muscles that I really never trained before)) My goals are harder to define, and very broad (No real priorities among them):

  • Conditioning
  • Long term endurance (In the scale of a longer bike ride or hike, no half marathon)
  • Correcting some office-damages and generally keeping my ass in motion
  • Functional Strength: Beeing able to pick up heavy stuff and carry it around for a while. I want to be stronger than I'm now.
  • improving my speed/explosive strength and agility (In case I want to do muaythai again)
  • To clarify my point on weight gain/muscle mass gain: It's not a goal in itself for me, but not something I would want to avoid.

What I'm looking for is advice if my plan is generally sound for these goals. I'm quite sure there are better schemes, but having a small catalogue and sticking with "at least 2 a week" seems like something I can stick to for a while. My second question is if individual blocks can or sould be changed or exchanged.

I hope this makes it easier for you to help me.

  • I appreciate what you are trying to do there, but unless you have a basic level of strength (eg. being able to squat 1x or 1.5x your bodyweight), you will probably be better served with a strength program, like Starting Strength or Stronglifts. Once you have a base of strength, making it more "functional" is that much easier.
    – VPeric
    Commented Jun 29, 2012 at 8:43
  • I'm a tad overeight, still bodyweight squats are an endurance exercise for me. My feeling is that I have a basic level of strength.
    – mart
    Commented Jun 29, 2012 at 9:52
  • I don't quite get your comment (even less the more I think about it) - please elaborate: Do you advise to exchange one of my blocks (all of them?) for a strength program? Why? I'm highly open to suggestions, If you frame qour cristicism as an answer It'd be appreciated.
    – mart
    Commented Jun 29, 2012 at 10:07
  • 1
    Functional strength for what? General fitness for what? Weight loss? Going to run a 5k? Do you do office work, or work in a warehouse? Your plan is kind of muddled, which will give you muddled results. I'd figure out exactly what you want to achieve, then ask about programs to achieve those desired results. Oh, and just as a notice, running hill sprints on that kind of a program is asking for an injury. Sprints/intervals of any kind are designed to increase top end speed, not general fitness, and are best done on a solid running base (By that I mean 20+ miles/week for 6+ months)
    – JohnP
    Commented Jun 29, 2012 at 14:46
  • 2
    Two random comments based on your question... Isolation movements aren't good at developing functional strength, and you will build muscle mass if you build functional strength.
    – user3085
    Commented Jun 29, 2012 at 16:02

3 Answers 3


In terms of basic outline of your programming, it looks fairly sound. Strength is very easy to develop - although most people tend to not have the attention to work on it properly. Strength programs should be very simple and, as a beginner, you should look to increase poundage pretty much every session. You're correct to focus almost exclusively on compound lifts (working lots of muscles - especially those that have large direct effects on the rest of the body - squats and deadlifts). Programs to look at are the 5x5 and 5-3-1. Obviously make sure that you are comfortable with the technique of these lifts in particular, as done wrong (90% of the time) can result in injury, especially if you're working near to your max.

The most important thing you have to do is progressively increase the weights you're lifting - if you're trying, your body will respond and you'll get stronger.

I'd also mention that loaded carries serve as superb finishers - in the gym, the farmers walk is the simplest way to do this: grab 2 dumbells (aim for approximately 50% of your own BW in each hand if you can) and walk. That's it! Aim to get as far as you can in a time limit, or aim for a distance and record your time. Check out my blog for further information - http://mmastrengthandconditioning.wordpress.com

  • 1
    Please check out what the faq has to say about self-promotion. The link you've provided doesn't point to any content relevant to this question, but rather just to your blog's landing page. While your experience and input are greatly welcomed here, please limit this type of self-promotion to direct links to relevant content only, and let your reputation on the site advertise for you. You are more than welcome to keep a link to your blog in your profile, where people can see what you have to offer. Commented Jul 2, 2012 at 18:13
  • Noted, thanks. I assumed that seeing as it is a strength question, that a strength and conditioning blog may be of use but i understand.
    – The Reaper
    Commented Jul 3, 2012 at 16:30

Mart - it sounds like you have a full time program in place, the question is: What are you looking to accomplish? and are you ready for the long-haul dedication to it? Know your goals, figure out what motivates you (and will keep you going), adjust as you need and go for it.

I'm not sure of your age, experience, etc....so, to directly answer your question: yes, it's a good program and if you follow Ross's direction, you'll get somewhere (hopefully the place you intended to get)


You want to develop functional strength, but right now, you are not doing a strength training program.

See my answer to here to a very similar question: Any suggestions on how I could improve my workout routine?

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