by Tony Gjokaj September 07, 2021 3 min read

Here is a free exercise program for beginners who want to start working out at the gym!

Therapeutic Barbells Program

This program is a four day program that helps people who are new to fitness or new to weights get leaner and stronger at the gym.

If your intent is to build muscle, feel good, or look better, this program is for you.

Day One - Lower Body (Strength)

  • Barbell Squat (3 sets of 5 reps, 3-5 min rest in between sets)
  • Deadlift (3 sets of 5 reps, 3-5 min rest in between sets)
  • One-Legged Leg Extension (3 sets of 10 reps)

Day Two - Upper Body (Strength)

  • Bench Press (3 sets of 5 reps; 2-4 min rest in between sets)
  • Dumbbell Row (3 sets of 8 reps)
  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press (3 sets of 8 reps)
  • Lat Pulldowns or Pull Ups (3 sets of 10 reps or 30 total reps)

Day Three - Lower Body (Muscle)

  • Leg Press (3 sets of 10-12 reps)
  • Lunges (2 sets, 10 reps each leg)
  • Leg Curl (3 sets of 10-12 reps)
  • Calf Raises (3 sets of 10-15 reps)

Day Four - Upper Body (Muscle)

  • Dumbbell Bench Press (3 sets of 10 reps, 90-120 seconds rest between sets)
  • Seated Cable Row or Dumbbell Row (3 sets of 8-12 reps)
  • Incline Dumbbell Bench (3 sets of 10-12 reps)
  • Tricep Extension (2-3 sets of 10-15 reps)
  • Dumbbell Curls (2-3 sets of 10-15 reps)

Program Tips

Sets, Reps, & Rest

Sets & Reps

Reps are the number of repetitions you do in one set.

Sets are the number of times you initiate a specific movement.


For exercises with ~5 reps, you should rest 3-5 minutes in between sets.

For exercises with 6-12 reps, you should rest 1.5-2 minutes in between sets.

Strength and Muscle Days

There are separate days that focus on two different goals: muscle and strength.

For the strength days, we pursue heavier lifting with less reps to build a stronger body.

For the muscle days, we pursue higher reps with less weight with the intent to build lean muscle.

Combining both of this will help build a solid foundation where more people will progress consistently.

Warm Up

You can warm up for 5 minutes on a cardio machine if you go to a gym. Alternatively, you can use a jump rope.

Rest In Between Sets

For the big exercises (like Squats, Bench, Deadlift), consider 3 minutes of rest in between sets.

For isolation exercises like the triceps, biceps, leg curls or leg extensions, 60-90 seconds should be sufficient enough rest up between sets.

How To Make Progress

With this beginner's program, you can utilize a linear periodization approach to exercise.

Let's say you're going for a Squat for 3 sets of 5 reps.

If you hit 5 reps on every set in one day, you can add weight to the bar the next session. For lower body exercises, 10-15lb increases, for upper body exercises, 5-10lb increases.

Before Any Program (Disclaimer)

Always consult your physician or qualified health professional with any matters regarding your personal health. Use of the information provided in this program should be used at your own risk.

Reforged Performance Nutrition LLC will not assume any liability for any direct or indirect losses or damages that may result including, but not limited to, economic loss, injury, illness, or death.

How's It Working For You?

If you have noticed you are stronger, have added some lean muscle over a few months, and feel a lot better mentally, this is exactly what the goal with this program is.

This program is designed to keep you active in the gym, which will improve not only physical health, but mental health as well.

From fat to fit, and from sad to happy.

Ultimately, it primes you up for a little more workout intensity.

if you have any questions or comments, feel free to email us at, or direct message us on Instagram.

Until next time, Reforged Warrior!

Tony Gjokaj
Tony Gjokaj

Tony is the Owner of Reforged Performance Nutrition. He is a PN1 Certified Nutrition Coach and has been in the fitness space for over a decade. His goal is to help bridge the gap between physical & mental health through fitness.

Also in Reforge Yourself

7 Ways To Get Off The Couch & Exercise When You Are Depressed
7 Ways To Get Off The Couch & Exercise When You Are Depressed

by Tony Gjokaj September 17, 2021 5 min read

When you're depressed, even when you're not expending a lot of energy... you don't feel like you have any energy to spare to begin with.

It can be aggravating to hear that you need to work out to boost your endorphins, (or whatever your friends say to you).

In reality, they aren't wrong... but how can you exercise if you can't even get out of bed?

Is there something wrong with us?

Absolutely not. This happens with depression.

The thing with depression is that your whole body may feel like it is against you... and it's very frustrating.

I've been there.

But I was forced to work out once I committed to it because of an accountability partner I had.

In this post, we are going to go over some ways that may help you get off the couch when your mind & body are against you.

Read More
How Hydration Is Essential To Mental Health... And 4 Tips to Improve Hydration!
How Hydration Is Essential To Mental Health... And 4 Tips to Improve Hydration!

by Tony Gjokaj September 13, 2021 2 min read

Hydration is paramount to your health and wellbeing.

When I worked my previous management job, I ran three rental car branches simultaneously at a time where one of the other managers was gone for over a month.

I would try to get my water in regularly, but the locations were incredibly busy. You would always find me at the front desk with customers swarming in.

This played a large part in my stress and I never knew it did until I found a way to actually get drink more water.

In this short post, we are going to go over why hydration is essential for mental health.

Let's dive in!

Read More
The Inactivity Trap: Where Depression and Physical Inactivity Collide
The Inactivity Trap: Where Depression and Physical Inactivity Collide

by Tony Gjokaj September 08, 2021 3 min read

When I was overweight, I was inactive, depressed, and had insomnia.

I would isolate myself from social interaction, which led me down a dark path where I contemplated suicide.

Eventually, fitness was my salvation, as physical activity led to me sleeping better, eating better, feeling better, and thinking better.

Prior to exercise, I was stuck in what was deemed an Inactivity Trap.

So in this post, we are going to go over an article that was written in 2009 with the same name, called "The Inactivity Trap". This article included studies that supported their claims from a psychological standpoint which intrigued me as well.

So let's dive into what the Inactivity Trap is.

Read More