A 3 Day Full Body Dumbbell Workout Routine

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t really need to go to some elite gym to build muscle efficiently, what you do need though, is at least an elementary understanding of some of the principles and a good set of dumbbell weights. A crucial thing to remember is that muscle is built only through applying these three, albeit simple, rules:

  1. As you progress you need to increase the weight amount and lift heavier.
  2. You need to provide your body enough nutrients to actually build muscle.
  3. You must provide your body with enough rest to actually use all those nutrients to repair the damaged muscle tissue.

The formal name for the first rule is known as progressive overload and was called such first by a U.S army physician – Thomas Delorme in the 1940s. Some people like to even call it the golden principle of muscle hypertrophy, as it claims that in order for the muscle to grow, it must first adapt to a tension, or load, that it has not experienced before.

Some studies have even shown that the load, or weight is the single, most important variable when it comes to stimulating muscle hypertrophy, so as long as you follow this so called “golden rule” then you will most definitely make progress. When it comes down to it, it’s just that simple.

Additionally, ditch the belief that you need fancy and expensive equipment to build muscle properly, a simple pair of dumbbells will have the same results as you would with a pricey pair. Due to the pandemic going on, fitness statistics have shown that at home work outs are becoming extremely popular, which is a pretty positive thing since you don’t waste time going to the gym, having a good set of dumbbells at home would do the job just fine.

The only con to this approach is that, although you still save more money, you need to have a wide range of dumbbell weights so that you can progressively increase the amount of weight you use. Fortunately, you don’t need that high of a range of dumbbells, a range of 10 – 70 pounds is just enough to build solid muscle. The only downside to all of this is that you may not have access to heavy enough dumbbells to target certain muscle groups such as the quadriceps and hamstrings.

To combat this flaw, you will need to train your lower body with high reps. The sheer amount of variability that dumbbell exercises have may shock you even.

So, to help you a bit with starting to work out at home, we provided a full body dumbbell workout routine you can do at your garage or home gym with ease. Seriously, it’s not that difficult!

The work out follows the common 3 times a week full body training protocol and is specifically made for those people that do have access to a range of dumbbells and an adjustable work out bench, but before we jump right into it, let us have a look at some basic important principles you need to know.

  1. Intensity

This specifically refers to the amount of work you do during each and every lift and is proportional to the amount of weight used. So, make extra sure that you perform each lift with the max intensity that you can muster! This also means that you will be lifting as much weight as you can for the target repetition range, which we will look over next.

  1. Volume

This refers to the amount of reps and sets that you will perform during each work out session.

When it comes to reps, you should be doing 6 – 8 of them for larger muscle groups such as the chest, back, and shoulders, 8 – 12 of them for smaller muscle groups such as the biceps and triceps, and finally 15 – 20 reps for the legs.

As for sets, this work out has a total of 22, 4 of which are for each of the large muscle groups and 3 dedicated to the small muscle groups. However, if you cannot finish all 22 sets within a span of 45 – 90 minutes, then you should do 3 sets for each muscle groups, which will amount to a total of 18 sets.

  1. Frequency

This refers specifically to the number of training sessions you will have to do per week. This work out in particular includes 3 full – body work outs each week. If by chance you are a beginner when it comes to weightlifting, you may find that your body just can’t recover quick enough for each consecutive session, and if that is the case, you may start with only 2 work outs per week, and only move up to 3 once you feel your body is ready for it.

To make your weightlifting journey efficient you have to remember the golden rule – to progressively lift heavier and heavier weights as you go on.

Take for example, if you finish 6 reps of dumbbell bench presses using 60 lbs. today, you should aim to complete 6 or even 7 reps the next week and increase the weight by lbs. the week after that and so on and so forth.

However, this is but a simple guideline to help you get started, and how quickly you will progress depends on a lot of factors such as genetics and age.

  1. A warm-up is always needed!

Last but not least, as you do before every work out, you have to warm up first so that you can reap all the benefits provided when you finish with working out that day. As the work out we have provided does not include a warm up section, here’s a few tips: always do a warm up set before starting each exercise with about half of the weigh you normally use during it for as many reps as you can do.

Here is the 3-day full body dumbbell workout you have been waiting for!

3 Day Full Body Dumbbell Workout Routine

Day 1 

  • Dumbbell Bench Press – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Stiff-Legged Dumbbell Deadlift – do 4 sets of 15 – 20 reps
  • Standing Dumbbell Press – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • One-arm Dumbbell row – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell One-Arm Triceps Extension – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps
  • Dumbbell Bicep Curl – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps

Day 2

  • Dumbbell Flyes – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Hamstring Curl- do 1 set of 15 – 20 reps
  • Side Laterals to Front Raise – do 4 sets of 6 – 8reps
  • Straight-Arm Dumbbell Pull-Over – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Triceps Dumbbell Kickback – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps
  • Alternate Hammer Curl – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps

Day 3 

  • Incline Dumbbell Press – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Goblet Squat – do 4 sets of 15 – 20 reps
  • Arnold Press – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Bent Over Two-Dumbbell Row – do 4 sets of 6 – 8 reps
  • Seated Triceps Press – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps
  • Concentration Curls – do 3 sets of 8 – 12 reps