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2 Strength Training Routines

2 Strength Training Routines
April 16, 2019 Dan Raimondi

2 Strength Training Routines. One uses machines, the other barbells. Is one better? Below I lay out the pros and cons of each.


  • Very accessible to most people
  • Fairly intuitive and easy to use
  • Can be progressively loaded


  • Likely requires going to the gym
  • Not all machines are easy to use
  • Still need to be set up and adjusted to your height
  • Require little to no balance to perform


  • Can be done from home
  • Can be progressively loaded
  • Requires balance and coordination
  • Can efficiently train movements that cover the entire body


  • Small learning curve
  • Small cost of a home gym
  • Intimidating to some

Whichever you choose, track what you do. my personal bias is towards barbell training. If you choose to use machines – and even I use machines sometimes – record your numbers and make progress. Below I’ve included 2 sample programs, 1 using only machines and 1 using only barbells. Either program can be done 2 days per week and should take no more than 45-60 minutes.

Day 1:

Leg Press: 3 sets of 8 reps. Add a little bit of weight until you find you’re challenged to complete the 8 reps.

Machine shoulder press: 3 sets of 8 reps. Same as leg press, work up to a challenging weight.

Lat Pulldowns: 3 sets of 8 reps.

Day 2:

Leg Press: 3 sets of 8 reps. Add a little more weight from last session

Machine chest press: 3 sets of 8

Seated Machine Row: 3 sets of 8

Day 1:

Squat: 3 sets of 5 reps

Press: 3 sets of 5 reps

Chin Ups: 3 sets of bodyweight (use a band if necessary)

Day 2:

Deadlift: 2-3 sets of 5 reps

Bench Press: 3 sets of 5 reps

Rows: 3 sets of 8 reps