Can a Three Day Workout Routine Get You Ripped?

Written by: Holly Smith, M.D.,

B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer

Writer, The Fit Father Project

Written by: Holly Smith, M.D.,

B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer

Writer, The Fit Father Project

3 day workout routine to get ripped
Life gets busy, and it’s easy to make excuses about why you can’t get back into shape. Can a three day workout actually deliver results?

Believe it or not, you don’t need to spend countless hours and days in the gym to achieve a muscular physique.

With the right plan, you can workout just three days a week and get the ripped body you have always dreamed about.

Keep reading to find out how a three-day workout can actually deliver results — and get you ripped!

Tired of the same old exercises? Try these workout alternatives!

See the program 38,000 guys over 40 are using to get results like these

Efficient and Effective

Does a three-day workout routine to get ripped sound impossible? Trust me, this isn’t a scam or “miracle” workout.

Research has shown that performing full-body exercises three times a week may be more beneficial for muscle growth than working out single muscle groups just once a week.

So instead of splitting up your muscle group workouts across five or six days to target each area, you can effectively build lean muscle mass in just three days.

Increasing the frequency of strength workouts for each muscle group has also shown to increase muscle size more than only working out each muscle group once a week.

This is what makes full-body workouts an ideal way to get those rippling muscles you have been working towards.

Dedicate Yourself To Fitness

Now, it's still going to take hard work and dedication on your part!

Since you are fitting these workouts into a smaller amount of time, you really need to push your body to fatigue.

With this three-day workout, you will see that you are aiming for 12 sets for each muscle group for the week.

best exercise for men 40+

What Are The 5 Best Muscle Building Exercises For Men 40+?

best exercise for men 40+
The secret to building age-defying muscle in your in 40s, 50s, & 60s is to modify the best muscle building exercises (bench, squats, rows) to make them safe on your joints…

Three Day Workout To Get Ripped

Take 24-48 hours off in between each full-body workout to allow the muscles to recover and avoid overuse injuries.

In parentheses, you will see the muscle group being focused on in the exercise.

For each muscle group, you will perform 12 total sets over the course of the week.

Incorporate Supersets To Increase Efficiency

You will also notice in these workouts that “supersets” are incorporated.

This means doing two workouts back to back with minimal rest.

This is typically done with opposing muscle groups, for example, biceps and triceps. These will be noted with an asterisk.

In this way, you are making the most out of your workout time.

Instead of taking long rest periods without doing any work, you use the time that you are resting your biceps to work the triceps.

And since some of the muscles used in each exercise overlap slightly, you are getting extra bang for your buck!

Day 1:

Deadlifts: (Legs)

    • Lay the dumbbell bar so that it is centered over your feet. Your feet should be about hip-width apart.
    • Hinge at the hip to grip the bar at about shoulder-width allowing your shoulder blades to protract.
    • Lower your hips and bend the knees until your shins contact the dumbbell bar. Keep your chest up.
    • Pull up to take the slack out of the bar and then begin driving through the heels to bring the weight upward.
    • After the bar passes the knees pull the bar back, pulling your shoulder blades together as you drive your hips forward.
    • Lower the bar by hinging at the hips and bringing it slowly to the floor.

Superset Chest and Back:

For this you will do one set of bench press, then move right into the lat pull down.

Take a one-minute rest after that, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Barbell Bench Press (Chest):

    • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a medium width grip, hold it straight over you with your arms locked.
    • Breathe in and begin moving the bar down slowly until it touches your middle chest.
    • Pause briefly and then push the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out.
    • Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position.

*Lat Pull Downs(Back):

    • Grab the bar with the palms facing forward at about shoulder width.
    • Bring your torso back around 30 degrees or so while creating a curvature on your lower back and sticking your chest out.
    • Pull the bar down until it touches your upper chest by drawing the shoulders and the upper arms down and back.
    • Your upper body should remain still and only your arms should be moving.
    • Squeeze your shoulder blades together for a brief pause, then slowly raise the bar back to the starting position.

Superset Biceps and Triceps:

For this you will do one set of preacher curls, then move right into the triceps pulldowns.

Take one minute of rest, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Preacher Curls (Biceps):

    • Sit at a preacher bench with a curl bar at the closest grip, palms facing forward.
    • With the upper arms positioned against the preacher bench pad and the chest against it, hold the curl at shoulder length.
    • Slowly lower the bar until your upper arm is extended with biceps fully stretched.
    • Curl the weight up until biceps are fully contracted and the bar is at shoulder height.
    • Hold this for a brief pause, then lower back down.

*Tricep Rope Pressdowns (Triceps):

    • Attach a rope attachment to a high pulley and hold the rope with your palms facing each other.
    • Bring your torso forward at about a 30-degree angle. Contract your triceps to pull the rope down until your arms are fully extended.
    • The upper arms should always remain stationary and only the forearms should move.
    • Hold for a pause and then bring the rope slowly back up.

Dumbbell Shoulder Press (Shoulders):

    • Hold a pair of dumbbells and sit on a bench with back support.
    • Bring the dumbbells up to shoulder height with your palms facing forward.
    • Push the dumbbells up until they touch at the top. After a brief pause, slowly bring the dumbbells back down.

Elbow Plank Hold (Core):

    • Lie face down on the floor resting on your forearms and knees.
    • Push off the floor, raising off your knees onto your toes, resting on your elbows.
    • Contract your abdominals to keep your body straight. Try to keep your back flat and your butt in line and not sticking up.
    • Hold as long as you can aiming for 10-20 seconds in the beginning. Gradually work your way up to one minute.

Day 2:

Bulgarian Split Squat (Legs):

    • Rest your left foot on a bench while you stand in a forward lunge position with your right foot on the ground about two feet in front of you.
    • Lower until your right thigh is almost parallel, keeping your knee in line with your foot.
    • Don't let your front knee travel beyond your toes. Drive-up through your front heel back to the starting position.
    • Repeat 10 times on each side.

Superset Back and Chest:

For this you will do one set of pull-ups, then move right into incline dumbbell press.

Take a one-minute rest after that, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Pull-Ups (Back):

    • Grab the pull-up bar with palms facing forward, shoulder-width distance apart.
    • Bring your torso back around 30 degrees and bring your chest forward.
    • Pull your torso up until the bar touches your upper chest by drawing the shoulders and the upper arms down and back.
    • After a second on the contracted position, slowly lower back down so that your arms are fully extended.

*Incline Dumbbell Bench Press (Chest):

    • Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
    • Lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
    • You may need a spotter to help you bring up the weights.
    • Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you.
    • Push the dumbbells up and pause at the top for a second.  Then start slowly lowering the weight back down to your shoulders.

Superset Biceps and Triceps:

For this you will do one set of supination curls, then move right into the skull crushers.

Take a one-minute rest after that, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Standing Dumbbell Supination Curls (Biceps):

    • Hold a pair of dumbbells at your sides with palms facing in toward your body.
    • Curl the weight up while twisting your forearm at the same time, so that at the top of the movement your palm is facing the ceiling.
    • Then lower the weight following the same path, and twist your forearm downward so that your hands are in a neutral position again at the bottom.

*Skull Crushers (Triceps):

    • Lie flat on a bench. Hold a curl bar above your head using a close grip with your elbows in close.
    • Lower the curl bar by allowing the elbows to bend as you bring the curl bar above your forehead.
    • Pause once the bar is directly above the forehead, then lift the bar back up by extending the elbows.

Bent-Over Delt Raises (Shoulders):

    • Sit on the end of the bench. Hinge at the waist while keeping the back straight as you hold two dumbbells.
    • Keep your torso forward and your arms slightly bent at the elbow.
    • Lift the dumbbells straight to the side until both arms are parallel to the floor.
    • After a one-second contraction at the top, slowly lower the dumbbells back down.

Hanging Leg Raises (Core):

    • Hang from a pull-up bar with both arms extended. Raise your legs until the to a 90-degree angle with your upper body.
    • Then slowly lower your legs back down. Try not to swing your body or use your body’s momentum to do this move.
    • Really focus on contracting your abdominal muscles.

Day 3:

Barbell Squats (Legs):

    • Start with a barbell across your upper back with your feet hip-distance apart.
    • Bend knees to come down slowly. Make sure your knees don’t track over your toes.
    • Come down as far as you can until you lose the natural curve in your lower back. Then drive back up through the heels to come back to the top.

Superset Back and Chest:

You will do one set of bent-over barbell rows, then move right into the decline bench press.

Take a one-minute rest after that, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Bent Over Barbell Rows (Back):

    • Hold a barbell with your palms facing down.
    • Bend your knees slightly and hinge at the waist while keeping the back straight until it is almost parallel to the floor.
    • The barbell should hang directly in front of you. Pull the barbell into your chest.
    • Keep the elbows close to the body while pulling up. Squeeze the back muscles and hold for a brief pause.
    • Then slowly lower the barbell back down.

*Decline Bench Press (Chest):

    • Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and lay back on the bench.
    • Using a medium width grip, lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked.
    • Have a spotter help you with this. Bring the bar down slowly to your lower chest.
    • After a pause, push the bar back up to the top.

Superset Biceps and Triceps:

You will do one set of hammer curls, then move into the overhead tricep extensions.

Take a one-minute rest after that, then repeat the superset two more times.

*Hammer Curls (Biceps):

    • Stand with a dumbbell in each hand with the elbows close to the body. The palms of the hands should be facing in towards your body.
    • Curl the weight up until the dumbbell is at shoulder level.
    • Hold the contracted position for a brief moment as you squeeze the bicep then lower the dumbbells back down.

*Overhead Tricep Extensions (Triceps):

    • Stand with a dumbbell held by both hands. Lift it over your head until both arms are fully extended.
    • The weight should be resting in the palms of your hands with your thumbs around it.
    • Keep your upper arms close to your head with your elbows and lower the dumbbell down behind your head until your forearms touch your biceps.
    • Then raise the dumbbell back up.

Arnold Presses (Shoulders):

    • Sit on a bench with back support and hold two dumbbells in front of you at about upper chest level with your palms facing your body and your elbows bent.
    • Raise the dumbbells as you rotate your palms until they are facing forward.
    • Continue lifting until your arms are extended above you in straight arm position.
    • After a second pause at the top, begin to lower the dumbbells to the original position by rotating the palms of your hands towards you.

Bicycle Crunches (Core):

    • Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Rest your hands behind your head without pulling on your neck.
    • Bring your knees in towards your chest and lift your shoulder blades off the ground.
    • Straighten your right leg out to about a 45-degree angle to the ground while turning your upper body to the left, bringing your right elbow towards the left knee.
    • Now switch sides and do the same motion on the other side to complete one rep.

Build Muscle And Get Ripped

This three-day workout routine is focused on building lean muscle mass and getting ripped. But, you may not lose weight as well.

It really depends on where you are starting from.

If you are overweight, then the increased calories burned in the workouts along with your increased metabolic rate from the muscle gain will allow you to lose weight.

However, since these workouts are focused on building muscle, you shouldn’t be discouraged if you see a slight weight gain at times.

See the program 38,000 guys over 40 are using to get results like these

Increased Lean Muscle Mass = Increased Metabolism

If you are gaining muscle, this may show up as weight gain on the scale at first.

Also, you may retain slightly more water in muscles that are being damaged and repaired from the exercises.

Overall, though, you are improving your body composition and metabolic rate by increasing your lean muscle mass.

If you are overweight to begin with, you will see the pounds start to fall off as well!

Weight Loss vs. Muscle Gain

If you are looking for more of a weight loss workout, while also increasing muscle mass, swapping out one of the full-body workout days for a cardio-focused high-intensity interval workout will be the way to go.

Adding cardio will burn more calories during your workout, and will increase your body's excess post-exercise oxygen consumption.

This basically means that your body will burn calories at a higher rate for longer, even after your workout is completed.

On non-workout days, try to add everyday activities that will focus on burning calories. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park farther away from the store so that you have to walk.

See the program 38,000 guys over 40 are using to get results like these

The Fit Father Project

The Fit Father Project offers different programs depending on what your goals are.

For example, FF30X is great for burning fat, gaining lean muscle, and leading an overall healthy lifestyle.

The workouts and meal plans are specifically designed for busy men that are motivated to make a positive change in their fitness.

30 day fitness kickstart

Here’s How Busy Guys 40+ Are Finally Losing Weight…

30 day fitness kickstart
If you’re in your 40s, 50s, & 60s, you need to eat and exercise differently to lose weight & actually keep it off…

Old School Muscle

Another great program offered by the Fit Father Project is Old School Muscle. This workout program is designed to build muscle and get you ripped.

It is different from other workout programs out there in that it is based on research on the best exercise routines for older men.

Old School Muscle also provides you with a nutrition and supplement plan to really enhance your workouts.

No exercise program is complete without considering all aspects of fitness, and this, of course, includes the nutrition aspect.

Get Started Today!

No matter what your age or your schedule, this three-day workout will get you ripped.

All it takes is dedication on your part to stick to the three-day workout schedule and follow a solid nutrition program.

And don’t forget to try the other programs from the Fit Father Project.

No matter what your goals, there is something for everyone!

Holly Smith, M.D. B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer

Writer, The Fit Father Project

Holly is board-certified in nephrology and internal medicine, has a bachelor’s degree in dietetics, and is a certified personal trainer with NASM-PES certification.

Holly is a keen runner, triathlete, and fitness and nutrition enthusiast. She has completed four full ironmans, twelve marathons, countless half ironmans, Olympic distance triathlons, half marathons, and numerous other road races.

Holly joined the Fit Father Project in May 2019 as a regular writer, contributing articles on health, wellness, exercise, and nutrition.

Here’s How Busy Fathers Over 40 Are Finally Burning Stubborn Belly Fat & Getting Healthy Without Restrictive Diets or Time-Consuming Workouts

This proven "Fit Father Program" has helped 38,000 busy men 40+ lose weight, rebuild muscle, and finally keep the weight off.

If you're frustrated with stubborn belly fat, failed diets, and time-consuming workouts, this is the answer you’ve been looking for…

Join 38,000 guys in over 108 countries that are using FF30X to lose weight. You get everything you need to succeed – including:
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  • VIP Accountability Coaching – our Fit Father Team will personally walk you to success, step-by-step.
LEARN MORE ABOUT FF30X >> See the FF30X Program overview here. You’ll discover how this proven Fit Father Program can help you lose weight and actually keep it off – without the complication and restriction of normal diets. »

*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on a three-day workout plan.

Written by: Holly Smith, M.D.,

B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer

Writer, The Fit Father Project

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Thanks for checking out the blog. We can’t wait to support you toward greater health, energy, and vitality. – The Fit Father Project Team


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