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5-to-1 Strength image1

Posted in: Articles by ProSource, Training Articles
By Patrick Striet, CSCS | Jul 5, 2013



Put the 5-to-1 Program to Work for You
With This Full 10-Week Sample Workouts



[Editor's Note: If you have any questions about Patrick Striet's comprehensive and challenging 5-to-1 Strength and Conditioning Program, feel free to log in to the site and enter your question in the comments area at the bottom of this article. We'll forward your question on to Patrick. You can also follow Patrick Striet on Twitter at @pjstriet.]

Since parts 1 and 2 of the 5-to-1 program have been published here at ProSource, I've received numerous emails and tweets asking about program specifics. It seems as if seeing a full sample program would be helpful to those who are currently tackling the program or are interested in implementing it in the future. You guys asked, so, in this final segment of the series, I'm going to deliver with a full 10 week program.

Before I lay things out, let me reiterate that what follows is purely an example of what the program could look like. The indicator exercises I've chosen are arbitrary, and may be entirely different than what you choose. The same can be said for assistance and supplementary exercises, sets and reps, cardio conditioning modalities, cardio conditioning frequency, intensity, duration, etc. Substitute things out and change things as you see fit. The key is just to stay true to the general principles of the program and the way the splits are set up. After that, it's completely up to you. Now, without further ado, here's the nitty gritty.

Indicator Exercises
Upper Body Press: barbell bench press
Upper Body Pull: barbell row
Lower Body Quad Dominant: front squat
Lower Body Hip Dominant: Romanian deadlift (RDL)

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Phase One (One Full Body Workout) 2 Weeks

Monday: Full Body Workout
Use all the indicator exercises

  1. Bench Press 4x5+ @ 80% 1RM (+ do as many reps as possible on last set); 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% of 1RM
  2. RDL 4x5+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 80% 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70%
  3. Front Squat 4x5+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 80% 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70%
  4. Barbell Row 4x5+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 80% 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70%

*Rest 2-3 minutes between the sets of 5, and 2 minutes between exercises.

Tuesday: Higher Intensity Interval Work

Treadmill Incline Ladder

  • Set treadmill at 5 mph and a 1% incline and run for 20 sec.
  • Dismount treadmill and rest for 40 sec.
  • Adjust the speed ½ a mile per hour and the incline by 1% during the rest
  • Hop back on at the end of the 40 sec. rest and run again for 20 sec.
  • Repeat in this format, adjusting the speed and incline slightly upwards on each interval
  • Go until you are physically unable to do another interval...this usually occurs between the 12-15 minute mark

Wednesday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

Perform 20-30 minutes of steady state work below 150 beats per minute. I STRONGLY recommend wearing a heart rate monitor.  This is considered "cardiac output" work. Use whatever modality you'd like (stationary bike, elliptical, stepper, etc).

Thursday:  Higher Intensity Interval Work

Barbell Complexes

Beginners use 45-55 lbs. Intermediate to advanced trainees use 85-95 lbs.
Perform 5 reps of all of the following exercises without resting between exercises (the bar won't leave hour hands):

  • Barbell RDL 5 reps
  • Barbell Row 5 reps
  • Barbell Hang Clean 5 reps
  • Barbell Push Press 5 reps
  • Barbell Front Squat 5 reps
  • Barbell Reverse Lunge (front squat grip) 5 reps each leg alternating

Rest 90 sec. and perform 3 more rounds for a total of 4 rounds.

Friday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

Repeat Wednesday. Use a different modality if you'd like.

Saturday: Low Intensity Cardio

Take a long ass 1-2 hour walk.

Sunday: Complete Rest

Phase 2 (One Upper and One Lower Body Workout) 2 Weeks

Monday: Upper Body Only Workout

1. Barbell Bench Press 4x4+ (do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 82.5% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 2-3 minutes between the sets of 4

2. Barbell Row 4x4+ (do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 82.5% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 2-3 minutes between the sets of 4

3A. Single Arm Landmine/Corner Barbell Press 4x4-6 each arm

3B. Pull-Up or Weighted Pull-Up 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise resting 90 sec. between sets

4A. Some Type of Push-Up Variation 3x8-10

4B. DB Pullovers 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise resting 60 sec. between sets

5A. Alternating Fat Grip DB Bicep Curls 2x12-15

5B. Face Pulls 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise resting 30-45 sec. between sets

Tuesday: Higher Intensity Interval Work

See Tuesday Phase 1

Wednesday: OFF

Thursday: Lower Body Only Workout

1. Front Squat 4x4+ (do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 82.5% of 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% indicator exercise *rest 2-3 minutes between the sets of 4

2. Barbell RDL 4x4+ (do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 82.5% of 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% indicator exercise *rest 2-3 minutes between the sets of 4

3A. Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 4x4-6 each leg

3B. Glute Ham Raise or Weighted Glute Ham Raise 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise resting 90 sec. between sets

4A. Leg Press 3x8-10

4B. Single Leg Hip Thrust 3x8-10 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

Friday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

See Phase One Wed/Fri

Saturday: Higher Intensity Interval Work

See Phase One Thursday

You could also do this after your Thursday lower body only workout and take this day off

Sunday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

See Friday

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Phase Three (Upper/Lower/Total) 2 Weeks

Monday: Upper Body Only Workout

1. Barbell Bench Press 4x3+ (+ do as many reps as possible on the last set) @ 85% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% of 1RM indicator exercise *rest 2-3 minutes between sets of 3

2. Barbell Rows 4x3+ (+ do as many reps as possible on the last set) @ 85% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% of 1RM indicator exercise *rest 2-3 minutes between sets of 3

3A. Single Arm DB Standing Press 4x4-6 each arm

3B. Underhand Grip Lat Pulldown 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

4A. Dips or Weighted Dips 3x8-10

4B. DB or Trap Bar Shrugs 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

5A. DB Alternating Hammer Curl 2x12-15 each arm

5B. Straight Arm Cable Pulldown 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Tuesday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

See Phase 2 Fri/Sun

Wednesday: Lower Body Only Workout

1.    Front Squat 4x3+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 85% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off at 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 2-3 minutes between sets of 3

2A. Barbell Good Morning 4x4-6

2B. Barbell Reverse Lunge (front squat grip) 4x4-6 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Prone Leg Curl 3x8-10

3B. Leg Press 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Stability Ball Leg Curl 2x12-15

4B. Leg Extension 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Thursday: Low Intensity Cardio
Long 1-2 hour walk

Friday: Total Body Workout

1.    Barbell RDL 4x3+ (+ do as many reps as possible on the last set) @ 85% 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off at 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 2-3 minutes between sets of 3
Volume Ladder A

2A. Close Grip Bench Press 10x1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 @ 60% of estimated 1RM

2B. Leg Press 10x1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 using an estimated 15 rep max
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest only 15 sec. between sets working up the ladder
Volume Ladder B

3A. Pull-Up/Chin-Up/Band Resisted Pull-Up/Band Resisted Chin-Up (pick the one that is a 15 rep max effort) 10x1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10

3B. Back Extension/Weighted Back Extension 10x1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest only 15 sec. between sets working up the ladder

Saturday: Higher Intensity Interval Work

AirDyne/Stationary Bike Sprints 12x :20 all out/:40 recovery coast

Sunday: OFF

Phase Four (Upper/Lower/Upper/Lower) 2 Weeks

Monday: Upper Body Only Workout

1.    Barbell Bench Press 4x2+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 87.5% 1 RM; 1x8-12 back off set @ 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between sets of 2

2A. Meadows Rows 4x4-6 each arm

2B. DB Incline Press 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. EZ Bar Pullovers 3x8-10

3B. Suspension Strap Push-Ups 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Landmine Lateral Raise 2x12-15 each arm

4B. Barbell Cheat Curls 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Tuesday: Lower Body Only Workout

1.    Barbell RDL 4x2+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 87.5% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set at 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between sets of 2

2A. Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 4x4-6 each leg

2B. Barbell Glute Bridge 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Leg Press 3x8-10

3B. Prone Leg Curl 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Leg Extension 2x12-15

4B. Back Extension 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Wednesday: Low Intensity Cardio

Long ass 1-2 hour walk

Thursday: Upper Body Only Workouts
1.    Barbell Row 4x2+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 87.5% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set @ 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between sets of 2

2A. Close Grip Bench Press (Anderson Style) 4x4-6

2B. DB Pullover 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Dips or Weighted Dips 3x8-10

3B. DB Shrugs 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. EZ Barbell Curl 2x12-15

4B. EZ Barbell Skull Crusher 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Friday: Lower Body Only Workout
1.    Front Squat 4x2+ (+ do as many reps as possible on last set) @ 87.5% 1RM; 1x8-12 back off set @ 60-70% indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between sets of 2

2A. Barbell Good Morning 4x4-6

2B. DB Deficit Reverse Lunge 4x4-6 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Single Leg Hip Thrust 3x8-10 each leg

3B. Single Leg Extension 3x8-10 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Leg Press 2x12-15

4B. Stability Ball Leg Curl 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Saturday: OFF

Sunday: Moderate Intensity Cardio

See phase 3 Tuesday

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Phase Five (Body Part Split) 2 Weeks

Monday: Chest

1.    Barbell Bench Press 5x1 @ 90%+ (if you are feeling strong keep working up and hit a new 1RM PR) indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between singles

2A. Barbell Bench Press 4x4-6

2B. Suspension Strap Flys 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest :90 between sets

3A. DB Incline Press 3x8-10

3B. Incline DB Fly 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Dips 2x12-15

4B. DB Squeeze Bench Press 2x12-15
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Tuesday: Lower Body (Knee Dominant Emphasis)

1.    Front Squat 5x1 @ 90%+ (if you are feeling strong keep working up and hit a new 1RM PR) indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between singles

2A. Barbell Reverse Lunge 4x4-6 each leg

2B. Glute Ham Raise or Weighted Glute Ham Raise 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Leg Extension 3x8-10

3B. Wall Sit 3x60-90 sec.
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Jump Split Squats 2x8 each leg (16 total reps alternating legs)

4B. Isometric Split Squat 2x30 sec. each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Wednesday: Back

1.    Barbell Row 5x1 @ 90%+ (if you are feeling strong keep working up and hit a new 1RM PR) indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between singles

2A. Supinated Grip Barbell Row 4x4-6

2B. EZ Bar Pullover 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Prone DB Rear Delt Raise 3x8-10

3B. Straight Arm Cable Pulldown 3x8-10
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Isometric Pull-Up 2xas long as possible with upper chest on the bar

4B. Single Arm Cable Rear Delt 2x12-15 each arm
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Thursday: OFF

Friday: Lower Body (Posterior Chain Emphasis)

1.    Barbell RDL 5x1 @ 90%+ (if you are feeling strong keep working up and hit a new 1RM PR) indicator exercise
*rest 3-4 minutes between singles

2A. Barbell Glute Bridge 4x4-6

2B. Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 4x4-6 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Prone Leg Curl 3x8-10

3B. Single Leg Extension 3x8-10 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Stability Ball Hamstring Triple Threat 2x
  •   12 straight leg bridges
  •   12 leg curls
  •   12 bent knee bridges

4B. Single Leg Reaching RDL (body weight only) 2x12-15 each leg
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

Saturday: OFF or Long Ass Walk

Sunday: Shoulders & Arms

1.    Some Type of Standing Overhead Press 4x3-5 ramping up to a top set
*rest 2-3 minutes between sets

2A. Seated Arnold Press 4x4-6

2B. Heavy Cheat Lateral Raise 4x4-6
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 90 sec. between sets

3A. Standing Plate Raise 3x8-10

3B. Landmine Lateral Raise 3x8-10 each arm
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 60 sec. between sets

4A. Incline Neutral Grip DB Front Raise (slight incline) 2x12-15

4B. Lean Away Lateral Raise 2x12-15 each arm
*alternate sets of the A & B exercise and rest 30-45 sec. between sets

After phase five, take an entire week off. Do not touch a weight. The only thing I'd advise here is a lot of foam rolling, mobility and flexibility work, and a professional massage or two. Let your body soak up all the stress you've put on it (especially during the last 4 weeks).

After the rest week, go back to phase one and start again. If you've hit some PR's during the two weeks of phase 5, recalculate your 1 RM percentages. Alternatively, you could switch your indicator exercises. It's up to you.

Now that you are armed with all this knowledge and you've seen a sample 10 week program, go ahead and design your own 5 to 1 program to suit your specific likes and needs and go after it! Until next time, stay strong and live fit!

Do you have any questions for Patrick about his 5 - to - 1 Workout?
Be sure to enter them in the comments field below.



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