Bodybuilding Weight Lifting – The Most Important Lifts To Gain Muscle

Bodybuilding Weight Lifting – The Most Important Lifts To Gain Muscle

When it comes to working out, there are basically two main goals that are the most popular and important to anyone who wants to get in shape or better shape.

Those two would be either losing weight or gaining muscle.

With so many advertisements and Fitness plans you can purchase online, how do you decide?

In this article I will give you my honest opinion on Bodybuilding Weight Lifting.  These 3 lifts would be perfect for someone who doesn’t know where to begin in the gym.

The reason is because you can split them up on day 1,2 and 3 and then day 4 go right back to your day 1 muscle group and you will always have Two days rest.

From over 20 years of experimenting and trying just about every lift and variation, I would like to share my results and opinions. I’m more of an old school lifter and feel that things have become over complicated nowadays. I do believe a workout plan works and I will tell you why.

The alternative to not starting someone’s fitness plan is to not workout at all. So when someones ask me my opinion on a workout they are trying after I know they normally don’t workout, I tell them it’s great!

This is the same thing with Supplements. Sometimes a good supplement can be enough to motivate someone to go workout. Please don’t over think it, just get in the gym split up your muscle groups on different days getting about 2 days of rest in between.



If you said to me, ” Bobby you can only pick 1 lift for the rest of your life, what would it be?”

My response would be the Squat!

The squat is the king of all exercises and works most muscle groups in the body. Are you are a beginner and not sure exactly what lift this is? The Squat primarily works the legs and butt.

You place a barbell over your shoulders in a standing position. Move your hips back and bend the knees and hips to lower your torso with the weight, then returning to the upright position.

If you have ever done an intense free weight squat workout after not having exercised for you a while I’m sure like me you can barely move the next 3 days. This is a great example of how important the squat is and how it works so many muscles in the body. This is a lift where form is extremely important.

You can do the squat with either Swiss Balls, Dumbbells, Barbells or even your own body weight. Whether you use free weights like barbells and dumbbells or machines like the smith machine will determine the effectiveness.

I recommend using the barbell free weight version once you have built up some strength and have good form because it is superior to the other was. Here are some benefits of the squat.

  • MOBILITY AND BALANCE Having strong legs are very crucial for staying mobile. They work your core and stabilizing muscles which will help you maintain your balance.
  • BUILD MUSCLE IN YOUR ENTIRE BODY They mainly focus on the legs and butt, but the also work your abs and back.
  • INCREASE TESTOSTERONE You will need to perform them at the proper intensity for this to happen though. High-volume resistance training of moderate-to-high-intensity while taking short rests between will trigger this.    I wrote a separate article on how to increase testosterone naturally.

If you would like to check it out just CLICK HERE



This is a tough choice because my 2nd 3rd most important lifts in Bodybuilding weight lifting are almost even.

The BENCH PRESS is my 2nd choice. This is the best overall upper body workout. So you have the Squat for lower and Bench for upper. If the bench is done correctly it works the Triceps, Pectorals and front deltoids.

This seems to be every ones favorite exercise.

I think that’s because it’s comfortable lying down and you are not getting that extreme burning feeling or lightheaded feeling like other lifts.

Most people don’t like being outside their comfort zone. This is the reason I think you don’t see many people doing the squat workout because its TOUGH. Some benefits of the bench press are…

  • BIGGER OVERALL CHEST The pec major muscle is the main muscle worked and gives your chest their larger and stronger appearance.
  • BIG STRONG TRICEPS The triceps make up 2/3 of the arm. So if you want your shirt tight around your arms you must build the triceps. I have an amazing Triceps workout that builds them to the size people are always commenting on and wondering what I’m doing. The Bench helps build all three heads of the triceps ( lateral, long, medial)
  • BRAGGING RIGHTS You will rarely ever hear someone ask how much you can squat, curl, or toe raise. The common weight room question is,

“How much can you bench?”

Bench Press
The 2nd best workout to gain muscle


TIP! You should also have a good Protein Powder and a good Pre Workout supplement to maximize muscle gain with these lifts.

I wrote an article on each if you would like to check them out just CLICK HERE for the Protein article and just CLICK HERE  for the Pre Workout article.



My last top 3 muscle builder choice is the Deadlift.

This lift is probably the least performed off the top 3. One of the reasons is there is not always room at the gym to do it and it’s a difficult movement.

This lift uses so many muscle groups, including the lats, lower back, quads, traps, glutes, hamstrings and calves.

You may wonder if you should perform this lift on either leg or back day since it uses both muscle groups. I would recommend back day personally because it is one of or if not the best back exercises.

I like to save leg day for squats is also another reason I do Deadlifts during back day. Here are some benefits of the Deadlift..

  • BETTER POSTURE When you Deadlift your core strength increases and adds to core stability. Deadlifting will target all the muscles that are responsible for posture.
  • IT’S SAFE If you have the form figured out it’s safe because you can’t get pinned under the weight or have it pull you over backwards. All you have to do is drop it and a spotter is not needed.
  • INCREASED CARDIO If you do 10 or more reputations and a decent pace this will increase your cardio ability. You most likely will understand what I mean after your reps when you can barely breath and need to sit down.

    Man lifting up a wight doing deadlift
    ………………………..Don’t Skip Deadlifts!



This all depends on what your goals are. I do all these lifts in the Hypertrophy phase AKA Muscle building phase. With this phase you will want to be doing 6-12 reps with a 1-2 minute rest between.

I personally stay around 8 or 9 reps with the heaviest weight I can do for that rep range.

I feel this is like the sweet spot for muscle building being right in the middle of the Hypertrophy phase.  If your goal is strength then you would want to be doing 1-5 reps with 3-5+ minutes of rest. Then there is the Endurance phase which you would be doing 12-20 reps with 30 to 60 seconds of rest between.



What If you are extremely busy and finding it hard to make it to the gym but can find a way to go at least 3 days.

Then you should be doing the 3 lifts I recommended and decide which phase of bodybuilding you want to be in. You could workout just 3 days a week with these 3 lifts and stay in the hypertrophy phase and have extremely good results.

I personally have tried this for a few months performing these lifts on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  I was able to keep the same muscle tone and look by this vs other programs I have tried.

This is actually what I do once I have maxed out on all my lifts, I just maintain.

What I mean by this is I may workout 5 or 6 days a week when just getting back into the gym after some time off( which rarely happens). After like 3 months I have hit all my maxes with each muscle group.

Then I start maintaining with these 3 lifts sometimes just 3 days a week and 45 minutes each workout. Yes this is the honest truth, I workout 3 days a week and 45 minutes to 1 hour each time.

My diet however is spot on and I’m getting good sleep.  You don’t have to be in the gym for hours and hours either.

Doing 10 sets with 2 minutes rest you will be done in 45 minutes max. I hope this helps and gives you some kind of direction on what the most important lifts are in my opinion.

These are the 3 lifts that basically all the old school bodybuilders used. Please leave me a comment if you have any questions!


“Train Insane Or Remain The Same”

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