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[UPWOD Nº34] The GET BIG Back Workout


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*UPWODs are Lean It UP’s Workout of the Day. For more info on UPWODs, how to do them effectively, and what they’re all about, read the introductory guide before starting.

**You can find all of our previous UPWODs here.


Every once in a while it’s important to switch things up, go HAM, and lift as much weight as possible to spark new gains. UPWOD Nº34 does exactly that — it’s a HEAVY, moderate rep, back-blasting workout that’s designed to build power, strength, and explosiveness.

Instead of busting out fat-bursting supersets, it uses a number of classic strength-building back exercises—including deadlifts and bent-over barbell rows—to facilitate heavy loads, tear up the muscles in your back, and push your physique to the next level.

You’ll follow a straight set protocol, and for most exercises, work in the 6-8 rep range. Make sure to take 90 seconds rest in between each set and use as much weight as possible that still allows you to hit 6+ reps.

Buckle down, get in the game, and CRUSH IT.


[UPWOD Nº34] The GET BIG Back Workout

back workout, workout of the day, wod, daily workout, workouts, workout plan, workout plans, workout routine, workout routines, work out, gym workout, work out plans, workout program

The grey column provides substitute exercises that you can do in-home with resistance bands (RBs) and dumbbells so that everyone can blast through the UPWODs.

If you don’t have resistance bands, I use and recommend Black Mountain’s set. If you need dumbbells, I love the Bowflex SelectTech 552 adjustable dumbbells.

**Bonus info for each exercise:

  • 1. Bent-Over Rows — keep your torso at a 45º angle throughout. SQUEEZE the contraction at the top for 1 second and lower down to a full-extension, Use a little momentum if needed.
  • 2. Barbell Deadlifts — standard barbell deadlifts.
  • 3. 1-Arm Bent-Over Dumbbell Rows — anchor yourself on a bench. Keep your back flat and core tight. Pull the dumbbell up into the side of your torso and lower to a full extension.
  • 4. [SUPERSET] Pull Ups + Lat Pulldowns — do a set of pull ups to failure. Immediately move to a cable station and do a set of lat pulldowns. If you can’t do at least 5 pull ups, swap them for a set of HEAVY lat pulldowns, drop the weight, and then immediately do a second set with a lighter weight.
  • 5. Horizontal Cable Rows — set up a cable station with a narrow grip attachment. Pull horizontally into your upper abs, squeeze 1 second, and release. Rock slightly if needed.
  • 6. Incline Dumbbell Rows — set a bench to a 45º angle and lay on it face down. Hold two dumbbells with a neutral grip and row up into the side of you torso. SQUEEZE at the top for 1s and lower back down to the floor.

Bryan DiSanto

Bryan DiSanto

Founder & Editor-in-Chief at Lean It UP
ELLO ELLO I'm Bryan DiSanto. I'm the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Lean It UP, a CPT/CSN/Fitness Coach, Chef trained at Le Cordon Bleu – Paris, NYU graduate, ex-fat kid, and all-around fitness junkie.

I also contribute to Men's Health Magazine.

When I'm not working on my abs (or somebody else’s), whipping up avocado roses and avocado toast, or running a Tough Mudder, I'm probably yelling at a Carolina Panthers game somewhere.

Come be friends with me on Instagram (@BRYDISANTO) & Snapchat (BRYDISANTO).
Bryan DiSanto
  • Stacy

    Hi Bryan,
    How are you? Are you not doing WOD’s anymore?

    • Hey Stacy,

      I won’t be doing UPWODs everyday anymore, but they’ll still pop up occasionally.

      Consider it a rolling training program — do each workout in order from Nº1 to Nº34 (or whichever the latest is) and then start back at the beginning.


      • Stacy

        and how about WOTM’s? Will those over pop up?

        • Definitely no more WOTMs, strictly UPWODs (still more frequently than the WOTMs would’ve been posted).

          Personally bored of writing up workout plans all of the time, choosing to focus on other priorities and content.

          • Stacy

            I understand. Just wanted to compliment you and let you know how much I have appreciated all of your WOTM’s and WOD’s. I have seen awesome results due to following your training splits and nutrition advice. I have had so many people come up to me in the gym and ask me “are you doing a show?” (no) “how do you train? what do you follow?”(because of the way I look) and I have always said Lean It Up is an awesome website with lots of information and I get my routines from there. So I just wanted to say thank you for giving such great programs and I’m sad to see them dwindle down. 🙁 Thank you so much!

            • Thanks so much Stacy, I can’t tell you how much that means and how much I appreciate the kind words ;).

              So glad you’ve seen strong results — that’s a product of your hard work and attitude. Keep killing it.

              Don’t worry, there will definitely still be new workout plans and content, just refocusing a bit. And I’m always here if you have questions!


              • Diana Wass

                I really like the idea of a WotW. (Work out of the week). It’s a bit overwhelming for me to see a new one daily, and monthly seems like a stretch. I do appreciate your effort in helping many of us out. Thanks 🙂

                • I agree — I think it’ll end up netting at about 1 UPWOD/week (speaking of that, Nº35 is up now). Just do them in order whenever you have time.

                  Thank you thank you, I appreciate you too 😉