barbell strength training

barbell strength training
  • Let me start by saying I am not here to re-invent the wheel.


  • I am not proposing to you that I found the next best thing in the world of weight lifting.


  • I do not have the ultimate fat loss secret.


  • I will not guarantee you six pack abs less than thirty days.


While all those sound great, none are possible.  Here’s my workout plan, and how I have abs, and stay around 10% body fat, and feel good about taking my shirt off in public.


Are you ready?





Groundbreaking, I know. 


That’s a barbell.


The same 45lb barbell that you see in every other gym you have ever been in.  This is your go-to tool in the gym, from now on.  When you walk into the gym, find the racks where these are located.  This is your new home.  New to working out?  Don’t deviate.  If you recall before, the best moves in the gym (and ONLY moves, if you are new) involve this guy.  Big, compound moves are the most “bang for your buck” in the gym.  These are your biggest muscle builders.  When I say compound moves, I’m talking exercises that require more than one joint and more than one muscle group.


Enter: Squats.


If you don’t do squats, you aren’t very serious about getting bigger.  We will address form and technique later.  But after squats, you have deadlifts, bench press, barbell rows, military press, incline bench press, front squats and on goes the list.  Go to the gym and do these moves, and only these moves.


You may recall my first experience in the gym doing cable flies.  While there is nothing wrong with cable flies (I actually do them often), they are not a good starter move for gaining strength.  Once you are already strong, they are a good addition to your chest routine, but not a replacement for bench press.


Next, you may be thinking to yourself, “I want big arms, but Brian didn’t list any dumbbell bicep curls in his exercises”.  Want big arms?  Go deadlift twice your body weight.  The bar gets real heavy, real fast.  Pick that thing up and set it down a few times, see if your arms aren’t sore.  Want big arms?  Can you do bodyweight pull-ups?  Hang a 45lb plate from your waist and rep them out – see if that doesn’t get your arms sore.  Again, not knocking dumbbell curls, but curls you can do AFTER you have strength, when you really want to work on muscle hypertrophy.  Side note: if you want to work biceps directly, your move is barbell curls.  Hey, there’s that barbell again.


If he doesn’t want me doing bicep curls, then he probably doesn’t want me doing triceps either”.




True story: I’ve seen a guy walk into my gym, go straight to the dumbbells and his first exercise was triceps kickbacks.  Words can’t describe the disappointment.  You shouldn’t have to ask if he is skinny.  But, just so we are on the same page – yes, he is skinny.  Want to work your triceps?  Dips are your thing.  Good at dips? Hang some 45lb plates from your waist – that will get your triceps firing.  Want another power triceps move – close grip bench press.  Hey, there’s that barbell again.


So there you have it – my “secret” formula for big results in the gym.  Now if only I had thought of all this myself.  Unfortunately, everyone else that is intelligent beat me to it.  People been using this method to get strong since long before I was even born.


We’ll dig into all these exercises more in-depth later, as well as some additional exercises in the gym.


The main point to take way from this is that new, trendy exercises are trendy for a reason.  They have short-term popularity but aren’t worth your time.


Barbell strength training has always been, and will always be, the best method for gaining mass, shredding fat, or whatever it is you are setting out to accomplish.  Need help with them?  Ask. Need help setting up a workout plan to incorporate these into your routine?  Email me to get started.



What are your favorite barbell exercises in the gym?  Let me know in the comments section below!