One Workout to Rule Them All: The Full Body Routine That Works

By on October 11, 2014

Below is an ambitious and highly intense 33 minute workout I recently uploaded. This workout and video are a little different from my usuals though, so I recommend reading the below description first, then coming back to it…

The Benefits of Full Body Workouts

Full body workouts actually have a lot of benefits over split routines for certain people and situations. While split routines are great for triggering maximum growth in specific muscles and especially for bodybuilders, most people aren’t going to benefit all that much from having an entire day dedicated to triceps.

Using full body routines on the other hand means:

  • You can use more compound movements and ‘functional’ exercises
  • You can stimulate a great hormonal and metabolic response (because you’ve worked the whole body)
  • You can hit the same muscle twice or three times in a week with ample time for recovery in between
  • You don’t walk around all week with biceps so painful you can’t straighten your arms…
  • You can enjoy more varied and interesting workouts
  • You don’t have to train as many times per week
  • Your routine will be simpler and thus easier to stick to/remember

So why if all that is true, do I not normally recommend full-body routines to people?

The answer is that they just aren’t generally intense enough to hit every muscle group in a way that will be sufficient to cause microtears and hypertrophy. A good compromise is a ‘push/pull’ routine (one day you do pushing exercises and one day you do pulling) with legs and abs on separate days and this is closer to what I recommend for beginners.

On Workout to Rule Them All

But for an experiment, I decided to see whether it would be possible to hit every muscle group hard enough in a single workout that it would be likely to promote gains (without that workout lasting 2 hours). Thus, I designed a full-body routine comprised of ‘mini circuits’, drop sets, giant sets and supersets in order to do maximum damage in the minimum amount of time.

Full body workout

Additionally, I wanted to try and make sure that my full body workout really was a full body workout. Not only did I want to avoid leaving out any major muscle groups, but also any ‘minor’ ones. That meant including rear delts, obliques, forearms… you name it.  And each muscle would have a greater or smaller number of exercises depending on its size (so lots for legs and fewer for forearms). It’s also performed quickly enough and with enough ‘resistance cardio’ that it should be conducive to fat burning as well.

You can see the results in the video above. It nearly killed me…

I don’t necessarily suggest you watch the whole thing by the way; it’s pretty long and dull, so just skip through. The point is that this is closer to what I think a full body routine could and should look like.

This is a work in progress and I’m going to be refining and honing the workout over the coming weeks as well as testing it myself to see if it can replace my usual split. If all goes well, this workout (and easier versions of it) will eventually incorporate flexibility, balance and more and form the backbone of a new fitness product. Stay tuned!

About Adam Sinicki

Adam Sinicki, AKA The Bioneer, is a writer, personal trainer, author, entrepreneur, and web developer. I've been writing about health, psychology, and fitness for the past 10+ years and have a fascination with the limits of human performance. When I'm not running my online businesses or training, I love sandwiches, computer games, comics, and hanging out with my family.


  1. chris says:

    hey i was wondering if you could share this great work out routine i used to use it back in the day but one day i went back and it ws gone please and thank you

  2. chris says:

    hey would be great to have this routine back i used it all the time but its gone now

  3. Aaron Keating says:

    Hi Adam, would you consider adding this workout (or a version of it) to your (paid) Superfunctional Training program? I’d find it very helpful – thanks.

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