If you need a workout that builds every muscle in your body in 20 sets of insanity, you are in the right spot!

mass building workout - deadlift

One of the biggest muscle building mistakes is not using your time effectively at the gym. I see so many skinny guys who spend hours doing accessory movements like bicep curls and lat raises, when the truth is focusing on heavy rows and deadlifts would grow their biceps even faster.

Today’s mass building workout is going to be 20 total sets and will be comprised of just 5 basic mass building exercises. These mass building exercises are all compound based and are so effective, that these are the only 5 exercises you need for mass and to build every muscle in your body. 

I could have stopped there, but this is Superhuman Fitness, where we always find creative ways to increase the intensity and make faster muscle gains. During each of these 5 mass building exercises i’m going to be throwing an intensity technique at you that will result in more hypertrophy.

This mass building workout will maximize the 3 science backed ways your body builds muscle. It’s 19 sets total and will grow every muscle in your body. Time to make some gains!


Mass Building Exercise 1 | Barbell Deadlift

Intensity Technique | Hulk Sets

The first exercise is the barbell deadlift, and to take this exercise to next level you will be performing what I call “Hulk sets” which means you will pick a weight that you could normally do about 8-10 times for 1 set until failure, and you will be performing 6 sets of 6 reps with just 60 second rest times.

This allows you to lift more weight in less time and increase the total tonnage lifted in a workout. For example if you normally lift 375 lbs for 3 sets of 5 your total tonnage lifted in the workout is 375 x 15 = 5,625

Now let’s say that instead of this you did 315 lbs. For 6 sets of 6. This means that you lifted 315 x 36 = 11,340.

That’s almost twice the total tonnage lifted in your deadlift workout with less weight on the bar. As you can see this is a powerful muscle building strategy.

Since the deadlift works the hamstrings, erectors, traps, shoulders, biceps, lats, and mid back it’s a great mass building exercise to break out the weapons of mass destruction!

Total Sets: 6  | Total Reps: 6 each set | Rest Time: 60 Seconds

barbell deadlift muscles worked



The next move is the db 1 arm row, and I chose this mass building exercise over the barbell row for this workout because it does a better job of targeting the lats and the rear delts than most traditional barbell rowing exercises. 

The most important thing with the db 1 arm row is that you are not making the mistake that 99% of people make when executing this move, and that is to pull straight up and down and use momentum to yank the weight.

To get the most mass building potential from this exercise, you need to think about pulling across your body and initiating with the lats and rear delts.

You are going to be performing 3 total sets of the Db one arm row. The first 2 sets will be heavy with strict form in the 10-12 rep range on each set.

On the last set I want you to perform an intensity technique called “time under tension” where you pick a much lighter weight and you focus on keeping the muscle under tension for 45 seconds on each side. This will burn like a mother but is a great mass building workout trick as it maximizes the metabolic stress phase of muscle growth. 

This exercise targets not only your lats but also your biceps and shoulders. 

Total Sets: 3 | Reps: 10-12, last set 45 Seconds TUT | Rest: 90 Seconds




The third exercise is the barbell squat and we are going to be doing something called Devil Sets and yes this will suck.

First of all the barbell squat is an incredible mass building exercise on its own, but the advantage that devil squats have is that it will place less stress on your joints and really force you to work harder at the bottom of the movement where the stress is placed more on the quads, glutes, hamstrings and hip flexors more than anywhere else. 

The first 3 sets I want you to go nice and heavy and focus in the 8-10 rep range without resting and locking out each rep at the top. This is a little trick to ensure that you place more stress on your quads.

The last 2 sets you will be performing a devil set finisher, where you are going to lighten the weight to about 50% of what you just did, and perform 6 partial reps in the bottom range of motion, then you are going to pause for 3 seconds at the very bottom, then 6 more partial reps, another 3 second pause, and 6 more partial reps with 1 more 3 second pause. 18 total reps of pure torture, but it will translate into some massive legs.

The barbell squat works the quads, hip flexors, glutes, hamstrings, lower back, core and traps.

Total Sets: 5 | Reps: 8-10 then 6:6:6 for finisher | Rest Time: 90 seconds  

barbell squat



The fourth exercise is the barbell incline bench press, and it’s my favorite upper body mass builder due to its emphasis on the upper chest and shoulders.

Contrary to popular belief, the barbell incline bench press is a great exercise to build your shoulders as well as your triceps if you have a narrower grip.

With the barbell incline bench press we are going to be performing 3 heavy working sets in the 8-10 rep range with a focus on lowering the weight slowly on the eccentric portion, which will translate into faster muscle gains.

I recommend that you count for 2-3 seconds on the way down on each rep and then explode back up.

​Troy Adashun


The barbell incline bench press might be the best mass building exercise for the upper body, and is extremely effective for building your upper chest and shoulders. I recommend you perform it twice per week for maximum aesthetics. 

On the third set you are going to be doing a dropset, where you will rep out the heavy working set for 8-10 reps until failure, then drop the weight by about 50% with no rest and pump out another 10-12 reps, or as many as you can do.

This will add some extra intensity and overload right on your upper chest, shoulders, and triceps!

Total Sets: 3 | Total Reps: 8-10 then a dropsert on last set | Rest: 90 seconds 



The last exercise of the workout is the barbell overhead press which will help you build your shoulders, upper chest, traps, and use your back and core to stabilize throughout the movement.

This exercise will allow you to push the maximum amount of weight from a vertical pushing move, and is a great upper body mass builder. This exercise works similar muscle groups to the barbell incline bench press, but is a far better shoulder boulder which is why I added it into the mix.

You are also going to smash your traps a lot more on this move than the barbell incline bench press.

Perform 3 total sets in the 8-10 rep range, focusing on once again the eccentric portion of the exercise and taking 2-3 seconds to control and lower the weight. 

On the very last set, i want you to grab a pair of light dumbbells and perform a standing db alternate overhead press for 20 total reps directly after your heavy set. This is a superset and will help to shock your shoulders into growth with more volume and time under tension.

Total Sets: 3 | Reps: 8-10 and then 20 on superset finisher | Rest: 90 seconds 


This mass building workout will build every muscle in your body and challenge you in new ways in the gym. Now it's up to you to take action. 

If you need some motivation you can watch me going through the entire mass building workout on the Superhuman Fitness youtube channel above. 

Try this mass building workout twice per week, and make sure you are eating in a calorie surplus and you literally can't fail.

If you want to add in more accessory work like arm days and ab workouts, be sure to head on over to our exercise database for tons of ideas!