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4 Day Barbell Only Muscle Building Routine

Not everyone has access to all of the most updated equipment in a gym. There are some of us that prefer only working with a barbell to build muscle. This is a routine designed around a barbell only prerequisite that will help you build some great muscle and strength.

This is a 4 day routine, a sample schedule would look like this:

  • Sunday – OFF
  • Monday – Workout 1
  • Tuesday – Workout 2
  • Wednesday – OFF
  • Thursday – Workout 3
  • Friday – Workout 4
  • Saturday – OFF
Workout 1
Exercise Sets Reps
Bench Press 4 8
Barbell Bent Over Row 4 8
Close Grip Bench Press 4 12


Workout 2
Exercise Sets Reps
Deadlift 4 8
Straight Leg Deadlift 4 12
Hang Clean 4 8
Barbell Curl 4 15


Workout 3
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Overhead Press 4 8
Barbell Shrug 4 15
Skull Crushers 4 15


Workout 4
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 4 8
Front Squat 4 8
Barbell Lunges 4 12 Per Leg
Seated Calf Raise 4 15


This is a pretty rough routine and will require a lot of hard work to complete it. If you run this for 12 weeks I know you will see some great results. Strive to add weight to the bar weekly in small increments.

Tip: When doing seated calf raises, purchase a 2×4 or similar board to place the balls of your feet on. This will give you a stretch like the seated calf raise machines do.

As always eat plenty of good healthy muscle building foods, log your workouts, and get plenty of recovery.

34 thoughts on “4 Day Barbell Only Muscle Building Routine

  1. I Just came across this post while looking for a 5 day program with barbells only, this looks great! So if you see this Comment I would like to know the following: What do I do if I don’t know how to complete hang cleans, should I swap them out for front squats?

    Thanks for the info mate, I’ll be trying this out for the next month to see how it goes!



  2. I like the basic compound exercises on the program, it’s effective but the bread and butter of lifts , takes the guessing what’s effective or not . Limited on the isolation exercises and only need a bar , weights , power rack , and bench . Because of my limited time I have now and days , Monday’s and Thursdays workout don’t take long to complete . I’m Going to be 46 and this program keeps me in beast mode hahahahaha!

    1. David,

      Thanks for the kind words. It’s amazing what two effective days of lifting can do right? I’m glad you’re kicking butt. Keeping those rest periods short can help speed you along when you do go to the gym.


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