HIT Workouts

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For more information on High Intensity Training see The Colorado Experiment Workout

Workout 1

(In general, one all out set per exercise)


  1. Machine Pullover
  2. Close Grip Pulldown or weighted chin
  3. Barbell or Nautilus row
  4. Barbell or Smith Machine shrug
  5. Hammer decline press
  6. Nautilus chest cross or crossover
  7. Dumbbell or Nautilus rear delt
  8. Neck apparatus (4 ways)


  1. Nautilus leg extension
  2. Regular or machine squat
  3. Trap bar deadlifts or stiff-leg deadlift
  4. Nautilus leg curl or glute ham raise
  5. Standing calf raise
  6. Seated calf raise
  7. Hanging reverse crunch
  8. Side bend or hanging side crunch
  9. Cable crunch


  1. Nautilus military press
  2. Hammer lateral raise or cable upright row
  3. Nautilus curl
  4. Pushdowns or Nautilus triceps
  5. Dips or Nautlius dip
  6. Forearm curl
  7. Reverse forearm curl
  8. Grip

Workout 2

DAY 1 (Upper Body)

  1. Bench Press or Incline Dumbbell Bench Press (2x8-15)
  2. Dumbbell Side Laterals (2x8-20)
  3. Barbell Preacher Curls (1x8-15)
  4. Close Grip Bench Press (2x8-12)

DAY 2 (Lower Body)

  1. Squats (1x10-25)
  2. Deadlifts (every other week; 1x8-15)
  3. Dumbbell Rows (2x8-20)
  4. One Leg Calve Raise (2x15-50)
  5. Crunches (with weight) (2x20-30)

Workout 3

Perform this routine 2 days per week.

  1. Barbell Squat (1x20)
  2. Stiff-Leg Deadlift (1x15)
  3. Overhead Barbell Press (1x12)
  4. Barbell Row (1x12)
  5. Pushups- as many as possible
  6. Chins - as may as possible
  7. Pushups - as many as possible
  8. Barbell Curl (1x12)
  9. Situps (1x12)

Workout 4


  1. Deadlift (Trap Bar) (1x10)
  2. Leg Press (1x20)
  3. Overhead Press (1x8;1x5)
  4. Shrugs (1x15)
  5. Pulldown to chest (supinated grip) (1x12;1x8)
  6. Standing Calf Raise (1x15)
  7. Four Way Neck Machine (1x15 in each direction)
  8. Thick Bar Reverse Curls (1x12)
  9. Weighted situps (1x15)


  1. Squats (1x15)
  2. Bench Press (1x5)
  3. Hammer Iso Lateral Row (1x8;1x6)
  4. One Arm Dumbbell Press (1x8;1x6)
  5. Tricep Pressdown (1x12)
  6. Standing Calf Raise (1x15)
  7. Four Way Neck Machine (1x15 in each direction)
  8. Thick Bar Reverse Curls (1x12)
  9. Weighted situps (1x15)

Workout 5


  1. Squat (2x5)
  2. Stiff-Leg Deadlift (2x15)
  3. Bench Press (1x8;1x5;1x2)
  4. Barbell Curl (1x10;1x5;1x3)
  5. Four Way Neck (15 each direction)
  6. Weighted situp (1x15)
  7. Forearms (various)


  1. Squats (1x10)
  2. Seated Press (1x8;1x5)
  3. Hammer Seated Shrug (1x10;1x6)
  4. Dumbbell Row (1x10;1x6)
  5. Four Way Neck (15 each direction)
  6. Forearms (various)

Workout 6 (3 by 3)

Rest just long enough to get to the next exercise.

  1. Leg Press: (1x16-17)
  2. Dip: (1x10-11)
  3. Chin: (1x8-9)
  4. Leg Press: (1x8-9)
  5. Dip: (1x8-10)
  6. Chin: (1x5-7)
  7. Leg Press: (1x8-9)
  8. Dip: (1x4-5)
  9. Chin: (1x 4-5)

Workout 7

As usual, a minimum amount of recovery between exercises.

  1. Leg Press (1x15-20)
  2. Leg Curl (1x10-15)
  3. Leg Press (1x12-15)
  4. Leg Extension (1x10-15)
  5. Leg Press (1x10-12)
  6. Dip (1x8-12)
  7. Tricep Extension (1x8-12)
  8. Negative-only Dip (1x6-10)
  9. Chin (1x8-12)
  10. Bicep Curl (1x8-12)
  11. Negative-only Chin (1x6-10)

Workout 8

A sample HIT routine for the beginner to intermediate level:

  1. Squat/Leg press
  2. Leg extension
  3. Leg curl
  4. Pullover (preferably a machine version such as Nautilus.)
  5. Overhead Press
  6. Bent-over Row
  7. Bench Press
  8. Biceps Curl
  9. Triceps Extension
  10. Regular Chin-up
  11. Parallel Dip
  12. Calf Raise
  13. Abdominal Crunches

Note the above are done for only ONE SET each.

Workout 9

  1. Full Squats - 15-20 reps
  2. Pullovers - 10 reps
  3. Standing Overhead Presses - 10 reps
  4. Chins - 10 reps
  5. Dips - 12 reps
  6. Barbell Curls - 10 reps
  7. Shrugs - 15 reps
  8. Stiff-Legged Deadlifts - 15 reps

How many sets of each exercise in this routine? One or two.

Workout 10


  1. Squat
  2. Stiff Legged Deadlift
  3. Calve Raises


  1. Bench Press
  2. Close Grip Bench Press
  3. Shrug


  1. Deadlift
  2. Some type of row
  3. Barbell Curls

Grip and calve work every other workout. Wait 2-3 days after the 3rd workout.

Workout 11


  1. Squat
  2. Power rack overhead press with a thick bar
  3. Weighted Crunches
  4. Neck Flexion
  5. Grip Work


  1. Trap Bar Deadlifts
  2. Power Rack Bench Presses
  3. Thick Bar Chins
  4. Side Bends
  5. Grip Work

Workout 12


  1. Squat
  2. Power Rack Low Incline Bench
  3. Shrug (barbell, dumbell, or machine)
  4. Curl (twice a month)
  5. calf, grip/forearm, neck work


  1. Deadlifts
  2. Overhead Press
  3. row, chin, or pulldown (if you can't chin yet)
  4. calf, grip/forearm, neck work

Workout 13


  1. Leg Press 2x8
  2. Dip 2x6-8
  3. Shrug 2x8
  4. Overhead Press 2x8

The basic exercises can be varied, and one could even do this just ONE time per week!

Workout 14

Full body - every 4-5 days, 1 hard set to failure, 2/4 rep speed:

  1. Squat 1x15-20
  2. Calve Raise 1x15-20
  3. Pullover Machine 1x6-10
  4. Incline DB Press 1x6-10
  5. T-Bar Row 1x6-10
  6. BB Behind Neck Pr. 1x6-10
  7. BB Curl 1x6-10
  8. Lying Tri Ext. 1x6-10
  9. V-up (Lower Abs) 1x15-20
  10. Crunch (Upper Abs) 1x15-20

Workout 15

Every Monday and Friday

  1. Nautilus Over Head Press
  2. Weighted Rev. Chins
  3. Nautilus Pullover
  4. Barbell Squat

One set each. Warm good. Work to Super Failure!!!

Workout 16

Workout A - all exercises carried to failure, one set each

  1. Full Squat, barbell or Smith machine; 6-10 reps
  2. Pulldown w/ supinated, close grip to clavicles; 6-10 reps
  3. Parallel bar Dip with dip belt or Nautilus multi-machine; 5-8 reps

rest completely for 5,6, or 7 days...(and longer barring insufficient recovery)

Workout B- all exercises carried to failure, one set each

  1. Deadlift; 5-8 reps
  2. Overhead Press; 5-8 reps
  3. Standing Calf Raises; 12-20 reps

rest again, same time, and repeat


  1. Before dropping an exercise from a workout [to only be performed 'every other session'], reduce the weight and apply the super-slow technique, unless squats or deadlifts are stagnating (in the latter two cases, one of the exercises should immediately be dropped, at least on a temporary basis).
  2. Do not abuse forced reps and/or static contractions, as both of those techniqueswill quickly result in overtraining.
  3. If your bodyweight has not increased recently, and your strength improves with this workout from the beginning, add 400-500 calories to your daily diet andkeep tabs on your bodyfat level - with proper training, gains of 1-2 lbs. lbm per week and sometimes more should not be unusual.
  4. Keep warm-ups to only the least amount necessary.

Workout 17

Workout 1 - All Exercises perform only one set.

  1. Incline Bench
  2. Wide Grip Dips (Weighted)
  3. Military Press (Standing or seated)
  4. Super slow Side Lateral Raise (Using this protocal enables you to concentrate on correct form which is crucial for this small muscle)
  5. Close Grip Dips (Weighted + Occasional Negatives)

Workout 2

  1. Leg press
  2. Leg Curl (Drop Set, every other week, when alternating with stiff leg deadlift otherwise do a straight set.)
  3. Stiff Leg deadlift
  4. Seated calf Raise
  5. standing Calf Raise (drop Set)

Workout 3

  1. Shoulder width overhand chins
  2. Dumbell or Barbell Row
  3. Deadlift
  4. Shrugs (Dumbbell or Barbell)
  5. Barbell Curls


  1. A one ontwo off cycle works best thus working each muscle group once every nine or ten days.
  2. Workout two takes Mike Mentzers latest theory to heart, by inserting legs on the second workout it gives the upper body time to recover because the first and third workout overlap, i.e. using different exercises for the same secondary muscle groups which are worked indirectly.
  3. When the third workout is completed take three days off as opposed to two.

Workout 18: Hardcore Death in Record Time


  1. Squats 15-20, compound-setted with
  2. Deadlifts 5-20. Yes, 5 can be a safe minimum with these during a compound-set


  1. Military press 6-12
  2. Reverse-grip pulldowns 6-12


In under 12 minutes a week, you can stimulate some pretty mean strength and size gains if you don't mind a lot of pain and strange looks. Don't use this routine for too too long as overtraining and mental exhaustion occur rapidly with it. Still, it packs on mass quickly.

Mike Mentzer Books

Mike Mentzer Video

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