Figure of 8 is a fantastic program if you are just starting out in the gym, or returning after a lengthy layoff.
The full body training style will give you a kick up the butt for sure, and this can be a great program whether your goal is muscle building OR fat loss!
I’ll run through the various moving parts of this program in a second so you know exactly how it works, but I wanted to start by saying this is a program MANY of my clients return to time and time again – because the beauty is in the simplicity!
Before you get stuck in to your first workout, I recommend reading through this Program Overview section in full.
FULL BODY WORKOUTS FOR FULL BODY RESULTS!
Some people prefer training the full body in each workout, and some people prefer training 1-2 muscles per workout.
Personally, I encourage you to explore the benefits of BOTH.
Figure of 8 is a full body training program, meaning you will work every single muscle each time you go to the gym.
Don’t panic if that sounds like “too much”, total volume has been scaled down to accomodate increased training frequency.
It’s important to know that, because lots of people either miss out on the benefits of full body training due to fear they won’t be able to recover, or they ruin their results by improper programming. As a member of russhowepti.com you needn’t have such concerns, of course!
There are two main reasons I enjoy implementing full body training with clients.
First, it’s great for variety. With so many muscles to train in one workout, you will never have a boring workout! Second, it’s brilliant for FAT LOSS Seriously, a 2016 study published in Biology of Sport had male trainees perform either a full body routine performed three times per week, or a traditional three day split (where the full body is trained over the course of three workouts). The same total volume of work was performed across each muscle group for four weeks, and the researchers discovered that the full body trainees burned significantly more body fat (dropping a crazy 6% body fat!) versus the three day split trainees (2% drop in body fat). (1)
Another key component of full body training is the INCREASED TRAINING FREQUENCY we can use. I’ve already shown you the benefits of this in my Biceps Boom program, and it’s something we’ll be taking advantage of right here in Figure of 8 over the next six weeks, too!
For example; if you’re going to perform 18 sets for your quadriceps, would it be better to perform all of those 18 sets in one workout (i.e. “leg day”) or perform 6 sets across three different workouts?
If our goal is hypertrophy (muscle growth) then we do the latter!
This was shown in a 2012 study from Norwegian researchers who compared the effects of two groups of powerlifters; one group performing squats, deadlifts and bench press across three big workouts per week and one group performing the same sets and exercises in SIX workouts per week (twice the workouts, but half the volume in each session). Over the course of 12 weeks, the group who trained with more frequency increased muscle mass by almost 10% versus the other group! (2)
PERIODIZATION WORKS. PERIOD!
There are three types of people at your local gym.
First there are the folks who go to the gym and make things up as they train. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
Second there are the folks who have been doing the exact same thing for months – or even years – and again, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
And then there’s a third group of people who just seem to get results no matter what. These infuriating people seem to progress faster than the speed of light, and their results leave most people trailing in their dust. These are the guys/girls who know about periodization!
If you glance at your workouts, you can see that your rep ranges will be changing as you move through the weeks of Figure of 8. This is done on purpose. You see, there are benefits to be had by training across almost every rep range, the “trick” is knowing how long to hang around in one particular “zone” to reap the results it offers, then swinging outta there before any negative adaptations occur. That’s periodization, and it is the underlying structure of your training plan. It will help you unlock a whole new world of results!
The form of periodization we will be using in Figure of 8 is known as reverse linear periodization. This means our volume will RISE from week to week. It’s great for boosting muscular endurance (which makes Figure of 8 a top plan for improving your fitness as well as tapping into the muscle building benefits we spoke of earlier!)…
… but there’s a TWIST!
YOU’LL BE USING STRAIGHT SETS, SUPERSETS, AND TRI-SETS!
Usually periodization comes in the form of increasing or decreasing your rep ranges, and there are several plans on russhowepti.com which do it very well…
… but I’m going to throw a curveball at you in Figure of 8!
In weeks 1/2 you will use workouts which follow a traditional full body training style where you hit each muscle four times per week, and then in weeks 3/4 your workouts will use supersets, and weeks 5/6 incorporate tri-sets.
It’s essentially three very different ways to use full body training – all rolled together into one ball-busting, fat-melting training program which provides you with endless variety!
FIGURE OF 8 TRAINING CALENDAR
Like all of the programs on russhowepti.com, there are NO LIMITATIONS on how you’d like to run the program.
In the diagram above you can see how I’d run it from start to finish, and this 2 on >> 1 off approach (2 days training >> 1 recovery day) is a training style I like because it helps performance to remain close to 100% every time.
However, if this setup doesn’t fit your schedule then feel free to simply work through Figure of 8 at your own pace. You’ll still complete the program, it’ll just take longer to finish.
PROPER NUTRITION IS KEY!
A great training program is NOTHING without a great diet plan.
You’ve probably heard me say it before – but I find it alarming how many people are willing to GAMBLE with their diets and “hope for the best”.
So I’ve built you an easy-to-follow six week nutrition plan to use alongside Figure of 8 that’ll whip you into tip top shape!
Just like your training, it has been broken down into three “phases” which will progressively chip away at body fat and ensure you get the best possible results in the shortest timeframe.
During weeks 1/2 you will eat…
… to read more and access the FULL TRAINING PROGRAM & DIET, become a member here.
- Crewther B. T., et al. The effects of two equal-volume training protocols upon strength, body composition and salivary hormones in male rugby union players. Biol. Sport (2016).
- Raastad T., et al. Powerlifters improved strength and muscular adaptations to a greater extent when equal total training volume was divided into 6 compared to 3 training sessions per week. Book of abstracts, 17th annual conference of the ECSS (2012).