The Most Popular Free Workout Routines from Reddit

Written by the Boostcamp staff
Jan 20,2024|12 min| 850

Unlocking the Top Reddit Best Workout Program: Free Routines

Going to Reddit for workout routines?

Reddit is usually looked at as a platform for people to explore topics that interest them, and those topics range from anything from scary stories to actual educational topics. What many people do not know is that Reddit is perhaps the best source of science-based fitness content on the internet, meaning there are a good amount of workout routines to be found. It is not something that people default to when looking for a workout program, but there are a good amount of Reddit workout routines and training programs to choose from, whether that be a variation of the push pull legs split or the upper lower, there are a lot of free reddit workouts to be found. As someone who's participated in various fitness communities since 2006, the Boostcamp team has a Reddit account and has seen that Reddit fitness has stood the test of time. Whether you are browsing for bodybuilding or powerlifting programs, or knowledge around supplements and steroids, Reddit is a platform that you can find information on these topics.

But why is Reddit good for finding fitness programs? Well there are a few theories. First, Reddit is where all the fitness nerds gather online, to share their routines and diets and everything else that you can think of, they allow for just about anything as long as it is within their network policy. With many active subreddits (think of subreddits like branches stemming from a tree) like r/fitness, r/weightroom, r/powerlifting, r/bodyweightfitness, and r/powerbuilding (there are over 15 million members on just those subreddits alone). Second, unlike most social media platforms that just have an upvote button, which pushes up content based on virality that may be trash quality, Reddit's upvote and downvote buttons work together to control quality. It's not perfect, but it is better than the rest.

Getting to the matter at hand, Reddit has aggregated many of the best free workout routines on the internet made by world-class coaches like Greg Nuckols, Jonnie Candito, Jim Wendler, as well as made by active Redditors, like Cody LeFever (GZCL) and nSuns, who have gained cult-like fame.

In this post, I'll focus on 10 of the most popular workout routines as voted by Reddit. Keep in mind that there are many incredible new programs (including many available on Boostcamp App) and paid programs out there, but I'm just going to focus on free programs that are tried and true, as proven by reviews and discussions by thousands of trainees who've run them successfully.

The Best Reddit Fitness Programs to Choose

Without further ado, here are the 10 most popular free gym programs on Reddit for building strength and muscle. These are ordered based on the experience level of the programs, from beginner to intermediate to advanced.

1. r/Fitness Basic Beginner Routine

Level: Beginner, Novice

Days Per Week: 3 days

Program Length: 12+ weeks

This is the ultimate beginner program for barbell strength training. You might ask, what about Starting Strength or Stronglifts 5x5? Believe it or not, Reddit generally dislikes these programs because many trainees develop "T-Rex Symptom", which is where someone develops disproportionately larger legs relative to their upper body due to too much squat and deadlift volume. This Reddit aggregated program addresses the weakness of those programs with more back and upper body volume.

2. 5/3/1 for Beginners

Level: Beginner, Novice

Days Per Week: 3 days

Program Length: 12+ weeks

Designed by renowned strength coach Jim Wendler, 5/3/1 is a proven system for building strength and muscle with a focus on the compound barbell movements. There are many variants of 5/3/1, with this particular variant designed specifically for those who are newer to lifting and can make faster progress.

3. Strong Curves

Level: Beginner, Novice

Days Per Week: 3 days

Program Length: 8 weeks

Strong Curves is written by coach Bret Contreras, who is known as The Glute Guy and the world's foremost expert on glute training. This is an excellent program to introduce women to weight training. While there certainly is a lower body focus in the program, the exercises are quite diverse and hits the entire body.

4. GZCL Program

Level: Novice, Intermediate

Days Per Week: 3 or 4 days

Program Length: 12+ weeks

Designed by r/fitness long-term member and coach Cody LeFever, GZCL is a very flexible program methodology that can be applied to many different training goals. In particular, GZCLP is a linear progression template that is a favorite amongst Redditors and beyond (including Meg Squats who made a popular YouTube video about GZCL after getting incredible results).

5. nSuns

Level: Novice, Intermediate

Days Per Week: 3, 4, 5, or 6 days

Program Length: 12+ weeks

Some Redditors might already be calling for my head for not putting nSuns as #1 on the list (as I said, the list is in order of training experience, from beginners to more advanced). nSuns is a gym workout routine made by another long-time r/Fitness member with some developer credentials. It gained fame for being an incredibly effective high volume program for building strength in the big 3. There are quite a few different variations of nSuns, such as 4-day a week, 5-day a week, 6-day a week version depending on your training goals.

6. 5/3/1 BBB

Level: Novice, Intermediate

Days Per Week: 4 days

Program Length: 12+ weeks

Jim Wendler's 531 program makes the list again, this time with a program variation called 5/3/1 Boring But Big. Like the title suggests, this is a high volume 5/3/1 variation to help you put on strength and size. This is made for more of an intermediate demographic, as compared to the 5/3/1 for Beginners.

7. Greg Nuckols 28 Programs

Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced

Days Per Week: variable # of days

Program Length: 4+ weeks

What? 28 programs? OK don't worry it's not actually 28 programs, but 28 sheets in a spreadsheet that's meant to be combined into 1 routine based on the exercise (squat, bench press, or deadlift), level (beginner, intermediate, advanced), and frequency (1x, 2x a week, or 3x a week per week). Think of this as a highly flexible spreadsheet that allows you to create your own program. If you hate spreadsheets but love Greg (I mean, who doesn't?) and still want to do his program, you can check out the free Greg Nuckols Beginner Program on Boostcamp App.

8. PHUL

Level: Novice, Intermediate

Days Per Week: 4 days

Program Length: 12 weeks

Power Hypertrophy Upper Lower (PHUL) is designed by Brandon Campbell for the intermediate lifter who wants to continue to develop their strength in heavy compound movements like the squat, bench press, deadlift and overhead press, but also wants to add size to their physique. It's an excellent program if you want more exercise variety than compound barbell movements.

9. PHAT

Level: Intermediate, Advanced

Days Per Week: 5 days

Program Length: 12 weeks

Developed by Dr. Layne Norton, the PHAT workout routine blends power and hypertrophy work, making it ideal for bodybuilders looking to gain size and lifters that want to look aesthetic without being weak. Each PHAT training session is centered around a major compound movement (squat, bench press, deadlift, dumbbell press). A training week has 5 sessions: 2 power sessions and 3 hypertrophy sessions.

10. Candito 6-Week Strength

Level: Intermediate, Advanced

Days Per Week: 3-5 days

Program Length: 6 weeks

Powerlifting program for intermediate to advanced lifters designed by the godfather of strength fitness YouTube, Jonnie Candito. This is one of the most effective programs for breaking personal records in the squat, bench, and deadlift. Don't take my word for it, just search up "Candito 6-Week program review reddit" and you'll find tons of athletes raving about the program's effectiveness.

More Training Programs

That being said, if you are looking to find some more fitness routines that are available, we know exactly where to look. Now to find good programs for some quality strength and hypertrophy training, check out the Boostcamp App. You can find tons of different workout routines that will truly push you to the limit, and they are made by renowned evidence-based coaches. Boostcamp also lets you create your own custom routines and log your progress, which is great for tracking your progress and making linear progression.

To maximize your gains and simplify your fitness journey, consider using Boostcamp, the last lifting app you'll ever need. Boostcamp helps you track your progress, offers customizable training programs, and provides expert guidance to ensure you get the most out of your chosen workout program whether it's linear push pull legs or upper lower or whatever you choose. There are also plenty of different program styles to choose from to help you start strength training. Start making the most of your workouts and download Boostcamp today!

The Most Popular Free Workout Programs Wrap Up

And that's a wrap! You can't go wrong by choosing any of these free Reddit workout programs, hopefully your IP address shows these workout programs in your history. For more programs, check out Boostcamp App for workout programs made by world-class coaches for bodybuilding, powerlifting, powerbuilding, athletics, and more. You can also create your own custom workouts on the app. Boostcamp is available for free on iOS and Android.

By Michael Liu

Last Updated October 3, 2022