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Drop 5 System: 4 Day Home Muscle Building Plan


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May 13, 2016
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Get Shredded!
This 4 day "Drop 5" split is designed for the home trainee. This program is an upper/lower split that utilizes only dumbbell, barbell and bodyweight exercises.


Workout Description​

Editor's note: for more information on the Drop 5 System, please click here.
"Drop 5" three week cycles will be performed for the following lifts:
  • Squats
  • Bench Press
  • Deadlifts
  • Overhead Press
Each Drop 5 set is performed for as many reps as possible. There is no need to train to failure. Stop a set when your form starts to slip, or when you feel like you might fail on the next rep. Live for progression, but train smart.
Here is how the 3 week Drop 5 cycle shakes out for the 4 primary exercises.
  • Week 1 - 75% x AMAP, 70% x AMAP, 65% x AMAP, 60% x AMAP
  • Week 2 - 80% x AMAP, 75% x AMAP, 70% x AMAP, 65% x AMAP
  • Week 3 - 85% x AMAP, 80% x AMAP, 75% x AMAP, 70% x AMAP
*AMAP = as many reps as possible per set.
Starting Weight. When you initially start the Drop 5 program, base percentages upon your current one rep max. Add 5 pounds to the bar when your heaviest set for that week reaches the following number of reps:
  • Week 1 - Add 5 pounds the next time you perform this week when you are able to perform 10 reps (or more) on your 75% set.
  • Week 2 - Add 5 pounds the next time you perform this week when you are able to perform 8 reps (or more) on your 80% set.
  • Week 3 - Add 5 pounds the next time you perform this week when you are able to perform 5 reps (or more) on your 85% set.
How to "Drop 5". After adding weight to your top set, simply "drop 5%" weight for your next set. So your next set would be 5% fewer pounds than your heavy set, your third set 10% lighter, and your final set 15% lighter.

Drop 5 Four Day Home Workout Split​

This is a 4 day training program for lifters looking to build muscle at home. Here is a sample schedule:
  • Monday - Lower Body A
  • Tuesday - Upper Body A
  • Thursday - Lower Body B
  • Friday - Upper Body B
Lower Body A
Deadlifts - Drop 5 Cycle4
Dumbbell Lunges415-20
Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlifts or Glute Ham Raise412-15
Standing Barbell Calf Raise412-20
Planks460 sec
Upper Body A
Bench Press - Drop 5 Cycle4
Upright Rows or Seated Arnold Press4AMAP
Pull Ups or Inverted Rows48-12
Close Grip Bench Press48-12
Barbell Curls410-12
Lower Body B
Squats - Drop 5 Cycle4
Goblet Squats412-15
Stiff Leg Deadlifts46-10
Single Leg Dumbbell Calf Raise415-20
Ab Wheel Roll Outs or Weighted Sit Ups415-20

Workout FAQ​

How do I perform barbell calf raises?​

Use straps and hold the bar in front of your body. Do not perform calf raises with a barbell on your back. This is far too dangerous.

When should I deload?​

Listen to your body. There is no need to randomly deload every 4th week. If you start to feel beat up or fatigued take an off week or deload week after the end of your next 3 week cycle.
Even if you don't feel beat up, consider taking a light week after 9-12 weeks just to do something fun, refresh your motivation and heal up a bit.

Can I swap exercise "X" for exercise "Y"?​

Yes, as long as it's a similar exercise variation. For example, you could use dumbbell rows instead or barbell rows, or any curl variation instead of seated curls.

Can I add in traps, forearm or whatever work?​

You can, but don't go overboard. This program is well rounded as it stands.