Questions? Text us at:


Big 3 Workout: What is it and is it right for me?

September 10, 2018

big 3 workout

What Is The Big 3 Workout? Is It Right For Me?

If you’re looking into lifting weights, you’re going to see a lot of conflicting information out there – about the number of reps you should do, whether or not you should use machines, what exercises are the best for you, how to avoid injury, and more.

It’s hard to distinguish fact from fiction. So we’re here to break down the basics about one of the most effective beginner weightlifting routines out there – The Big 3 Workout.

This workout is fun, foolproof, and effective, especially for beginner lifters who are just beginning to test their limits, and are interested in packing on muscle fast. So, without further ado, let’s get into the Big 3 Workout.

What Lifts Are In the Big 3 Workout?

The Big 3 Workout focuses on the 3 “biggest” lifts that require the most different muscle groups, and have a complex movement that strengthens your core and stabilizer muscles.

These lifts are:

  • Deadlift - Deadlifting is, quite simply, the best lift you can do for your whole-body strength. This compound lift requires a strong back and core, and also engages your arms, shoulders, and legs. This means that it helps strengthen just about every part of your body at once.
  • Squat - Squats are the single best compound lift for your lower body. Squats force you to work your stabilizer muscles, become familiar with the process of raising and lowering heavy weight, and are great for your legs and butt. Your back and shoulders are also involved in the squatting motion, and are strengthened by regular squatting.
  • Bench Press - Think of the bench press as the upper-body equivalent of the squat. Your entire upper body - from your shoulders to upper back, lats, pecs, tris and bis - they're all used in some way to bench press properly.

These 3 lifts are the only lifts that you need to get stronger. Yes, you can use dumbbells and machines, and do all of the other exercises that you want, or you are looking to work out a particular muscle group further. But, even if you only ever do these 3 lifts, you’ll be able to pack on muscle, and become stronger every day.

What Does A Big 3 Workout Routine Look Like?

Again, it's incredibly simple. You will do:

  • 5 sets of 5 reps of deadlifts
  • 5 sets of 5 reps of squats
  • 5 sets of 5 reps of bench press

And you’ll do this 3 days a week. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are usually recommended. What else? Nothing – that’s it! Just hit the gym, warm up, and bust out 5x5 sets of all 3 of the above exercises. If you’ve never done heavy compound lifting before, you’ll be shocked at the results.

How To Progress With The Big 3 Routine?

One word of advice in starting this type of workout. Choose the weight you believe you can lift for the whole workout. You don’t want to be switching weights. For example, if you choose 100 lbs as your weight, then for each set of deadlifts.

As you progress with this routine, you can start adding weight to increase the intensity of the workouts. The increases don’t have to be fast, in fact, we recommend allowing your body to rest, only increasing weight when you feel you are ready. A 5-10 lbs increase is common but there is no fixed rule for this.

At first, the main thing you should be concentrating is making sure that you follow the right form. If you have to lower the weight, don’t hesitate to do it. That last you thing you want to do is hurt yourself by lifting more than you can handle.

Alternatively, if you're missing more than 15% of your reps in total for two sessions in a row. Then you should lower the intensity of by at least 10% for the next set.

Is The Big 3 Workout Right For Everyone?

In most cases, yes. However, it is recommended that you take time to familiarize yourself with each exercise if you’ve never done heavy compound lifts before, to avoid injury. In addition, this routine may not be right for anyone who has severe back problems, or other injuries that prevent them from properly performing the listed weightlifting exercises.

Get Started With The Big 3 Workout Today!

No matter why you're looking to become stronger, the Big 3 Workout is a great choice. It's simple, easy and effective - and in no time at all, your strength will increase dramatically. Get started with the Big 3 Workout Today!

big 3 workout

Return to Blog