Off-Season Football Workouts, Part 3: Building Lean Muscle Mass

In Phase 3, the purpose is clear—build as much muscle as possible. With this added muscle, you will be able to tackle harder, be a better blocker and overpower opponents so you can make a play. Plus, the decrease in fat can even help you increase your speed.

Football Workouts

After completing Part 1 and Part 2 of my football workout, you will have built strength and endurance on a solid foundation. Now, you are ready to build serious lean body mass, increase strength and cut body fat.

In Part 3, the purpose is clear—build as much muscle as possible. The added muscle will enable you to tackle harder, be a better blocker and overpower opponents so you can make plays. Plus, a decrease in fat can increase your speed.

This football workout involves full-body routines with two exercises per major body part. You can achieve a high volume of reps with each muscle group—essential for building muscle. Sets and intensity increase as repetitions decrease, compared to previous phases. But single rep maxes are still not a goal in this part of your off-season football program. Never sacrifice technique to make maximum gains. This will help you stay injury-free.

Phase 3: Hypertrophy Training

  • Reps: 6-10 (Decrease by two reps per week)
  • Sets: 3-5
  • Percent of Max: 75-85 percent (increase by three to five pounds per week on each exercise)
  • Frequency: 3 to 5 times per week
  • Duration: 3 to 4 weeks
  • Exercise Selection: 2 to 3 exercises per muscle group

Day 1

  • Chest
    • Barbell or Dumbbell Bench
    • Physioball Dumbbell Incline Bench
  • Legs
    • Barbell Parallel Squat
    • Dumbbell Single-Leg Skater Squat
  • Shoulders
    • Dumbbell Push Press
    • Resistance Band Face Pull
  • Back
    • Dumbbell Row
    • Side-to-Side Chin-Ups
  • Explosive
    • Barbell Snatch
    • Plate Cork Screws
    • Alternating Dumbbell Plank
    • Single-Leg Seated Box Jumps (hold landing for one second)

Day 2

  • Chest
    • Dumbbell Close-Grip Bench
    • Side-to-Side Push-Ups
  • Legs
    • Deadlift
    • Dumbbell Single-Leg Step-Ups
  • Back
    • Barbell Row
    • Alternating-Grip Pull-Up
  • Explosive:
    • Hang Clean
    • Med Ball Throws
    • Plank Kick Throughs
    • Lateral Box Jumps

Day 3

  • Chest
    • Dumbbell or Barbell Incline Bench
    • Dumbbell Reverse-Grip Chest Press
  • Legs
    • Front Squat
    • Good Mornings
  • Shoulders
    • Physioball Jackknife and Push-Up
    • Dumbbell Front Raise
  • Back
    • Dumbbell Shrugs
    • Dumbbell Single-Arm Row
    • Physioball Plank
  • Explosive
    • Box Jumps


Robert Pomazak, MS, PES, SES, is a NASM-certified performance enhancement and speed specialist. He currently serves as strength and conditioning coordinator at Elk Grove High School (Elk Grove Village, Ill.), where he has taught physical education and coached varsity football and baseball for the past 10 years. Pomazak focuses on sport-specific program development and performance training for high school athletes.

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