If you're looking for some free workout routines because you're short of ideas or want to try something new, this is the right place for you.

Week after week I decided to share new free workout plans for those that are interested in discovering new combinations of exercises that can be done to build muscle in your entire body...evenly.

I'll teach you which exercises can and should be done on the same day at the gym, and which ones should be done on different days.

Of course it all depends on the muscle groups that you're going to train.

Free Workout Routines and Muscle Groups Charts

The following images should be a good start point to understand the muscle groups and plan new free workout routines:

Free Workout Routines: What to Keep in Mind

If you surf the internet you can find plenty of free workout routines, but sometimes they're not very well planned.

I mean, maybe they're good for some people and not for others. As always, it depends on you.

We're all different and we should always experiment and avoid deciding only on other people's experience.

This is why I'd like to give you some more options. Who knows, maybe some of you will feel inspired and benefit!

Do you have your perfect workout routine, a workout plan that really helped you build muscle? Please share it with us.

Number of Sessions, Muscle Groups etc.

Here are some basic rules that you should consider when you start your own free workout plan:

  1. Decide how many sessions per week. Most people choose 3 times a week. Others go to the gym 5 days a week...while I am currently going only 2 times a week and I feel great. It depends on your age and how much rest you can get between your workouts (do you sleep enough?)
  2. Train all muscle groups during the week. Chest, legs, shoulders, arms, core, back, legs...you should hit each of them. It's very important to decide which ones to train on the same day. Please don't do chest, back and legs on the same day!
  3. Machines and/or free weights. Which one is right? It depends on how your body responds to them, but generally speaking free weights give you a more complete workout. But it's also good to alternate free weights with machines.

Number of Sessions

There are pros and cons either when you go to the gym too often and too rarely.

Five days a week

This is for who wants to train hard, has time and is young. I don't like to train 5 days a week because I can't really recover by the next day.

If you train 5 days a week you should focus each day on a different muscle group if you're older, while young guys can train the same muscle also twice per week. Like...you can do chest on mondays and also thursdays.

If your life style doesn't allow you to rest well and sleep lots, then avoid training 5 days a week or you will be overwhelmed and overtrained very soon, and you'll end up hating the gym.

Of course people on steroids can train the same muscle multiple times a week, but I don't even want to talk about that case.


Three Days a Week

Most people train 3 times a week, and that's why mondays, wednesdays and fridays are the busiest days at the gym, aren't they?

With the 3 days free workout routines you can basically split your workouts to cover all muscle groups keeping the workout duration short (very important, read the importance of short training sessions) and allowing at least one full rest day between workouts.

Two Days a Week

This is what I am doing right now. I am enjoying my 2/3 days of rest between my workouts. I was feeling overtrained before, with negative results and consequences on my performances at the gym.

Yes, the workouts are a little bit longer and it's more difficult to cover all muscle groups in a limited time, but that's why I mostly do compound exercises on these days.

I am having best results with the 2 day split!

Muscle Groups

Free workout routines are easy to find and it's also easy to find lots of junk.

Sometimes they throw a bunch of exercises together with no sense at all.

You should train only one big muscle group per session. Big muscle groups are:

  • Chest
  • Back
  • Legs

Of course in a 2 day routine you have to train 2 groups on the same day, so don't choose chest and back together.

What most people do is to train a major muscle group together with its complementary muscles (a.k.a. secondary muscles).

Some examples are:

  • Chest + Shoulders + Triceps
  • Back + Biceps
  • Legs

When you do chest you always use your shoulder and tricep muscles as well, so you warm them up when you do the bench press for example.

It's good to train them right after, because if you trained them the day after you would use them again while they're still recovering.

Same for back and biceps, most back exercises use biceps.

Smaller muscles take a shorter time to heal, so in some cases it's okay to train them two times a week.

Example: you can do chest on monday and triceps again on thursday. By then your triceps are "fresh" again.

Free Workout Routines: Machines Vs. Free Weights

One of the free workout routines that I recently posted shows you an example of three day workout using only dumbbells.

Free weights are great to build muscle because they force you to use secondary/complementary muscles much more than machines, where you do only guided movements.

They say that with free weights you can build muscle faster and better.

But it's also true that free weights are more dangerous and you risk more injuries if you don't perform a perfect movement.

I like to do machines too, some and some. It always depends on you, some people can get better results with machines, only you can find out for yourself.


This and much more you can find in my workouts tips article!


Return from Free Workout Routines to Build Muscle 101

4 Responses

  1. vic
    Nice article. Thanks for the info. Are there other muscle groups that go together and those that don't?
    • Cristian Cristian
      I would just avoid training big muscle groups on the same day. For example I never do chest and back, but I may combine legs and chest, or legs and back. You can do biceps and triceps on the same day, or you can do chest and triceps, then back an biceps. I never do chest and biceps or back and triceps. I just doesn't make sense to me. Cheers
  2. Kristina
    So, are you saying that you should only train each muscle group once a week?
  3. I love the 7 muscle group images! However, when I downloaded them and opened them up, I could not read the text. Do you have them in a higher-quality format so that when they are resized larger, the text does not become blurry?