Strength Training Program for Men and Women

In the world of exercise and fitness, a 12-week strength training program for men and women dominates the landscape. You might have seen them in fitness magazines, over the years. So, are they successful? Yes, they are. But we’re going to tell you an important secret: it doesn’t always take 12 weeks to do a weight loss strength training program for women or men. 

Not that you’re going to be a seasoned vet in just 4 weeks, but if you can only get the starting month under your belt, you will easily cross the proverbial hump, where so many people struggle, and eventually give up, and lay the groundwork for a lifetime of strength and muscle gains.

We have designed the best strength training program for men and women, respectively. It does not matter if you are looking for strength training for weight loss or a strength training program for beginners, the given workouts can be easily modified to meet the needs of everyone from beginners to professionals with specific goals in mind. Moreover, even if you have been absent from the gym for months, the following programs will get you back up and on the track in a few weeks. So, let us get to work together: 

Strength Training Program for Men

If you are looking for a program that is modified according to the push-pull legs (PPL) routine, then this is the best strength training program for men that you can find. Plus, this program includes more volume for arms, shoulders, and the chest. 

You can also use a weightlifting belt for more difficult lifting exercises like a barbell deadlift. Weightlifting belts offer extra support to the spine, protect it from the risk of injuries, and provide you with the right kind of form, you need, to carry out an exercise effectively.

Also Read: The Definitive Weightlifting Belts Guide

Day No. 1

Monday – Push
Exercises Sets Reps 
Barbell Bench Press (+warm up)3 hard sets4 – 6
Incline Barbell Bench Press3 hard sets4 – 6
Dumbbell Bench Press3 hard sets4 – 6
Triceps Push Down3 hard sets4 – 6

Day No. 2

Tuesday – Pull and Calves
Exercises Sets Reps 
Barbell Deadlift (+warm up)3 hard sets4 – 6
One-Arm Dumbbell Row3 hard sets4 – 6
Lat Pull Down (Wide-Grip)3 hard sets4 – 6
Leg Press Calf Raise3 hard sets8 – 10

Day No. 3

Wednesday – Upper Body and Core
Exercises Sets Reps 
Seated Dumbbell Press (+warm up)3 hard sets4 – 6
Dumbbell Side Lateral Raise3 hard sets8 – 10
Dumbbell Rear Lateral Raise (Seated)3 hard sets8 – 10
Cable Crunch3 hard sets8 – 10

Day No. 4

Thursday – Legs
Exercises Sets Reps 
Barbell Back Squat (+warm up)3 hard sets4 – 6
Leg Press3 hard sets4 – 6
Lying Leg Curl3 hard sets8 – 10
Seated Calf Raise3 hard sets8 – 10

Day No. 5

Friday – Upper Body and Core
Exercises Sets Reps 
Close-Grip Bench Press (+warm up)3 hard sets4 – 6
Barbell Curl3 hard sets4 – 6
Seated Triceps Press3 hard sets4 – 6
Dumbbell Hammer Curl3 hard sets4 – 6
Captain’s Chair Leg Raise3 hard sets8 – 10

Strength Training Program for Women

For women, choosing a new strength training program can be a very frustrating and intimidating process because of all the wrong workout recommendations given to them over the years. With all the wrong information out there, it is difficult to discover something that actually works.

This training program is perfect for every woman whether she is looking for a strength training program for women to lose weight or a beginner strength training program for women. 

For exercises, like Romanian deadlift and incline skull crusher, in which you feel extra stress on your wrists, you can wear wrist wraps. Wrist wraps provide extra stability and support to the forearm, wrist, and the hand. They also help with exercises performed to increase grip strength

Day No. 1

Monday – Legs and Glutes
Exercise SetsReps 
Squat3 – 46 – 12
Dumbbell Lunge2 – 312 – 15
Dumbbell Step Up2 – 312 – 15
Barbell Hip Thrust36 – 12
Glute Cable Kickback2 – 312 – 15
Cardio Exercise
Do 15 minutes of HIIT exercise on a stationary bike.

Day No. 2

Tuesday – Back and Arms
Exercises Sets Reps 
Pull Downs3 – 46 – 12
One Arm Dumbbell Row2 – 312 – 15
Seated Cable Row2 – 312 – 15
Dumbbell Curl312
Tricep Overhead Extension312
Cable Curl315
Cable Press Down315
Cardio Exercise
Do 30 minutes of moderate intensity on a stair mill.

Day No. 3

Wednesday – Legs and Glutes
Exercises Sets Reps 
Goblet Squat3 – 46 – 12
Romanian Deadlift2 – 312 – 15
Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift2 – 312 – 15
Smith Machine Sumo Squats (Glute Focus)36 – 12
Glute Kick Back315
Cardio Exercise
Do a 30-min low intensity workout on a treadmill at an incline of 10-15%. 

Day No. 4

Thursday – Chest and Shoulders
Exercises Sets Reps 
Dumbbell Bench Press3 – 46 – 12
Incline Dumbbell Press2 – 312 – 15
Machine Chest Fly2 – 312 – 15
Seated Dumbbell Press3 – 46 – 12
Lateral Raise2 – 312 – 15
Cardio Exercise
Do 15 minutes of HIIT exercise on a stationary bike or a rower.

Day No. 5

Friday – Legs and Arms
Exercises Sets Reps 
Deadlifts3 – 46 – 12
Good Mornings2 – 312 – 15
Leg Extensions2 – 312 – 15
Incline Dumbbell Curl312
Incline Skull Crusher312
Cardio Exercise
Do 30 minutes of moderate intensity on a stair mill.

The Weekend (Optional)

Incorporate some light activity in your weekends. Take recovery walks and do some optional abs workout. 

Saturday and Sunday – Optional Abs
Exercises Sets Reps 
Plank320 seconds holds
Lying Floor Leg Raise310
Crunches320
Side Crunches215 on each side

To raise the overall amount of calories burned per day, we have also added some cardio exercise sessions that you can perform either in the mornings or after that day’s training. However, if you are constrained by time, they are not necessary to do in order to see success in this workout routine.

Also read: Strength Training for Runners | Complete Guide, Benefits, and Mistakes 

Do Not Overlook Diet and Nutrition

No matter how hard and frequently you work out in the gym, if you don’t eat the right kind of food at the right time, all your work will go in vain. We have compiled some nutritional tips and diet secrets for you to follow for strength training for fat loss or other goals. Moreover, if you do not eat healthily, you will not get either chiselled or strong. 

Here are some tried and tested approaches that have been shown to offer great results, and you can add these to your weight loss strength training program for men and women, respectively.

Drink Enough Water

Adequate hydration is important when it comes to strength training and health in general. Water makes up about 80% of human bodies, and we need water to carry out even the most simple physiological processes. Without sufficient quantities of water in our system, we put ourselves at the risk of dehydration that can impair our athletic efficiency and overall health.

When we work out, we sweat and lose essential electrolytes. That’s why it’s crucial to remain hydrated during training, to replenish the fluids, minerals, and electrolytes that we lose during training.

Invest in High-Quality Whey Protein

If you want to burn excess fat and build muscle, then you need to invest in whey protein apart from consuming the best foods for muscle growth.

Whey protein shakes are great for strength training because one shake contains about 30g or more of protein per serving. They are easy to prepare, taste nice, and are full of other nutrients which our muscles rely on.

Do Not Ignore Protein

Protein is essential for muscle development and repair. If you want to get toned, you need to ensure that you take enough protein every day.

Opt for about 0.6 – 1g of protein per pound of your body weight, distribute it uniformly across the day. Look for lean sources like chicken, fish, turkey, eggs, nuts, grains, grass-fed red meat, and dairy.

Do Not Forget the Veggies 

You also need to consume plenty of vegetables to get the most out of strength training. Vegetables are packed with digestive-friendly dietary fibre and are rich in minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins.

Don’t just depend on multi-vitamin supplements when it comes to the matter of nutrient intake. Make sure that you consume more than enough fresh vegetables every day.

For more tips to stay healthy and in shape, read: How To Stay Fit & Healthy With These Simple Tips.

Wrapping It Up

Whether you are an experienced gym-goer or a newbie looking for a strength training program for beginners, fitness workouts tailored to your level of expertise will help you move towards your strength and muscle goals. Over time, you will notice that your body reacts better to some exercises better than others, allowing you to change your workout accordingly. 

A proper strength training regimen and healthy eating habits are the best way to get in the best shape, no matter what your level of experience is.

Also read our Strength Training 101 Ultimate Guide

Images source: Shutterstock