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The 1-2-3-4 Training Program: Day 4

The 1-2-3-4 Training Program: Day 4

For more information about this training program, click here for the introduction and day one. You can also see the complete video above. Very quickly I will remind you that in the 1-2-3-4 training program you will..

  1. Perform one exercise, then rest and repeat until all your sets are completed.
  2. Perform a superset (two exercises in a row with minimal to no rest in between exercises) and repeat until all your sets are completed.
  3. Perform a tri-set (three exercises in a row with minimal to no rest in between exercises) and repeat until all your sets are completed.
  4. Perform a giant set (four exercises in a row with minimal to no rest in between exercises) and repeat until all your sets are completed.

Day Four: Upper Body (Chest, Vertical Pulling/Back)

A1) Plyometric Push Ups: Chest (Explosive)

Exercise substitutions: Any explosive or speed horizontal push. (Med ball pushes, speed bench, ballistic bench press etc.) 

plyo pu

Sets: 5
Reps: 3-5
Rest between sets: 90 seconds

Perform the exercise above with 90 seconds rest between sets. Repeat until your sets are completed, then move onto the “B” exercises.

B1) Incline Barbell Bench Press: Chest (Strength/Hypertrophy)

IBP site

Exercise substitutions: High or low inclined dumbbell, barbell, or smith machine bench press) 

Sets: 4
Reps: 6-8
Rest between sets: none go right into B2)

B2) Lat Pulldown: Lats (Strength/Hypertrophy)

Exercise substitutions: Any vertical pulling variation (Chin ups, pull ups, lat pulldowns etc.)

lat site

Sets: 4
Reps: 8-10
Rest between sets: 120 seconds

Perform the two “B” exercises above in succession. Rest 120 seconds and repeat until your sets are completed. Then move onto the “C” exercises.

C1) Flat Dumbbell Pec Fly’s: Chest (Isolation)

 Exercise substitutions: Dumbbell or cable chest fly variations etc. (Any horizontal adduction movement)

pec site

Sets: 3
Reps: 12-15
Rest between sets: None right into C2)

C2) Shoulder External Rotation with cables: Shoulder cuff (external rotators)

 Exercise substitutions: Cable or dumbbell shoulder external rotation exercises etc.

Ext rot site

Sets: 3
Reps: 12/side
Rest between sets: None right into C2)

C3) Problem area or lat stretch


Sets: 3
Timed set: 60 seconds/side
Rest between sets: 90 seconds

Perform the three “C” exercises above in succession. Rest 90 seconds and repeat until your sets are completed. Then move onto the “D” exercises.

D1-D4) Push up/pullover repeat

D1) Push ups: Weighted if needed (30 seconds)

push up site

D2) Dumbbell pullovers: (10 reps)

pullovwr site

D3) Push ups to down dog: (30 seconds)

p to p

D4) Dumbbell pullovers: (10 reps)

pullovwr site

Ground rules

  • Perform the recommended amount of time/reps for each exercise.
  • Take minimal to no rest between each.
  • Rest 60 seconds after all 4 exercises are completed.
  • Repeat 1-2 more rounds.

If you want or need a specific warm up, feel free to do this. It is shown quickly in the video above as well…

Self massage (5 minutes)

In general, roll each area for about thirty seconds to two minutes or more. Since I cannot assess you, stay on the areas that need the most work you will stay on the longest. If you have no idea what those are, do this.

1. Foam Roll Upper Back/Thoracic spine: Or Problem Area #1

t spine

2. Foam Roll Lats: Or Problem Area #2

Foam roll lats

3. Lacrosse Ball Pecs: Or Problem Area #3


Ultra fast warm up (5 minutes) 

1. Side lying windmill x7 reps/side

Side lyng windmill site

2. Extended or regular front plank to push back x7 reps

p to p

3. Band pull aparts x7 reps


Also note: With each exercise don’t jump right into the weight you will be working with. Gradually increase the resistance with some “warm up sets” before performing and getting into the “working sets”.

For example let’s use the seated dumbbell overhead press. Let’s also say you have 4 sets of 8 reps assigned. Start with light dumbbells, then grab heavier ones each set. Once you progress to a weight that is challenging for 6 reps, this would count as your first set. Then you would have three more at that weight according to the above protocol.

Thanks for reading and watching!

About Justin Rivelli

Justin Rivelli has been training clients online and in-person at his private gym in Berkshire County, Massachusetts for over 15 years. He specializes in helping 35 to 65 year old adults improve their body composition with well-rounded fitness plans that suit their needs, wants, and lifestyle. You can find out more about him at


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