Workout Routines

Bad-Ass Workout of the Week: Maximum Volume

We assess this high volume, body part isolating routine from one of our readers. Can you handle it?

Bad-Ass Workout of the Week: Maximum Volume


OK, let’s just start with the fact that your name is Burk Morphew. Any workout a guy named Burk Morphew is doing is going to be bad-ass. You sound like you could be an action hero. I’m expecting to see your name on the Expendables 3 movie poster.

If you are going to be training this often (6 days per week) I really like the one-main-body-part-per-day set-up you have going here. It’s a great way to get in the amount of volume needed for muscle growth. And, speaking of volume, the ascending set-rep scheme is a rarely used yet effective strategy. It cannot be overstated how lifestyle factors—no fried foods, high meal frequency, protein-rich diet—are critical to your success. If you are able to maintain single-digit body fat at your age (37) clearly you’re bad-ass.


I’d love to see you start each workout with a bigger bang-for-your-buck exercise right out of the gate. Think barbell moves like the military press (shoulder day), close grip bench press (arms day), deadlift or bent-over row (back day) and front squat (leg day). And while I think the higher rep sets are getting you the volume you need for muscle growth, there may be diminishing returns staying up in that range for 6 months as you’ve described.

I’d also love to see you bring the rep ranges down into the 4 to 6 range and begin getting stronger in these lifts. It’s the best way to add pounds to the bar when you go back to higher rep training and pounds of muscle to your frame. And since we’re going heavier, I’d also like you to take an extra day of rest and recovery and train 5 days per week. This can easily be accomplished by working bi’s and tri’s on the same day and simply adding in abs to the end of two of your workouts. Recovery is often the most under appreciated aspects of training, especially by guys who get off on always getting after it.


If you like to train often and are a fan of body part splits with tons of volume, clearly this is for you. But, like Burk, you have to have the other lifestyle factors in place, so party animals need not apply. And having a bad-ass name will make any workout more bad-ass. Truth!


Dan Trink, CSCS, is a strength coach, personal trainer, fitness writer and nutritional consultant. He is also the Director of Training at Peak Performance in NYC. You can find out more about Dan at or on Facebook at www.faceboook/trinkfitness.

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