Before starting with the best split workouts, get one simple fact straight, no trainer can tell you a magic routine that will improve your physique overnight. Muscle gain and building a chiseled body amounts to years of hard work and a lot of error and trial. However, all trainers and fitness articles like this one can suggest some effective exercises, reps and set schemes, and popular training techniques. But, at the end of the day, you are the best judge of what works the best for your body as you know it the best. Indeed, the upper-lower split workout routine is by far the best when it comes to split workout routines.
Split workout routines have a particular mechanism where you split the days to assign them to specific body parts. Therefore, planning your split training depends upon some specific factors. These factors are particular and suited to your needs. These specifications will be discussed further in the article to improve your clarity regarding split routines. With that said, let us see some of the most potent split workout routines other than the infamous upper-lower split workout routine.
Split Workout Routines
Bodybuilders move with their workout routine from easy to complex. Following the same idea, the split workout routines below will be easy moving to more advanced. Though options for workout routines are plenty, these are some of the most seamless options for you.
Also, keep in mind that you should probably follow these split routines when you become an advanced lifter if you are a beginner now. Once you achieve that position and gain experience, you will certainly get used to a plethora of exercises that will help volumize your muscles. But first, understand the most common split workout routines with their advantages and disadvantages-
1. Whole Body Split Workout Routine
This split workout routine is characterized as a beginner-friendly workout outline involving an exercise for each body part just for a few sets. So, the volume of workouts is low; however, this twist of this workout plan is intentional. This is so because the initial adaptions by beginners come through the nervous system. So the focus here is to activate and utilize more and more muscle fibers rather than targeting physical gains to improve muscle size and strength instantly. It needs more frequency and repetition 3 times per week. Due to the low volume of this split workout, this gap of 48 hours is vital.
Besides activating the muscle fiber, another reason for the low intensity of this workout is to minimize the later day muscle soreness for the newbies. However, if the rest day turns into no workout for more than a week, then the previous workout will become meaningless, and you will return to square one with no muscle workout. Follow the below-given sample to try a whole-body split workout routine–
- Day 1– 1 exercise for each major muscle group with 3 sets, 10-12 reps
- Day 2– Rest
- Day 3– 1 exercise for each major muscle group with 3 sets, 10-12 reps
- Day 4– Rest
- Day 5– 1 exercise for each major muscle group with 3 sets, 10-12 reps
- Day 6 and 7– Rest
2. Push, Pull, And Legs
Advancing with your workout allows you to improve volume for each muscle group. Pairing muscle groups is not so challenging but pushing all muscles together, pulling all muscles together, and then doing the leg exercises is the most popular way of pairing all major muscle groups. You can include abs on any one of the days of your preference. The reason why pushing muscles are linked is that several body parts are already involved during multijoint exercises. For instance, delts, pecs, and triceps work in concert, meaning when you train pecs, you simultaneously also work on delts and triceps.
The alternative workout of shoulders on Mondays, chest on Tuesdays, and triceps on Wednesdays may not allow proper recovery. You can expand the volume easily by adding one the third exercise per muscle group. You can perform multiple rep targets here, mostly doing compound exercises and lower reps. You can perform this workout twice a week but should add a rest day every fourth day so that it technically makes up for a 3 day split over the course of 8 days. However, this change entirely depends on your personal schedule and rest.
- Day 1– Chest, triceps, and shoulders. 3 exercises each with 3 sets in reps 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12.
- Day 2– Back and biceps. 3 exercises each with 3 sets in reps 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12.
- Day 3– Legs. 4 exercises with 3 sets in reps 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12 reps
- Day 4– Chest, triceps, and shoulders exercises, each with 3 sets in reps 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12
- Day 5– Back and biceps. 3 exercises each with 3 sets in 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12 reps
- Day 6– Legs. 4 exercises with 3 sets in reps 6-8, 8-10, and 10-12
- Day 7– Rest
3. Four-day split
Advancing towards a four-day split shows your progress. Training of fewer muscle groups daily indicates that you are ready to boost the volume and intensity of your training. A four-day split is usually done over the course of a week. However, you can also do it alternately with a 4/1 or 4/2 progression. To group body parts efficiently, pair a large muscle group with a smaller one.
You can alternately pair muscle groups that target opposing actions like your chest with biceps and then back with triceps. To avoid training a particular muscle on consecutive days, add a leg day or rest day in between. Also, according to experts, it is better if you approach to train your larger muscles first. This means you will prefer training the chest before the triceps as the triceps help chest in pressing movements. Experts also add that the importance of rest days also increases along with higher intensity and volume. Below given is the sample of a four-day split routine-
- Day 1– Back and biceps, 4, 3 exercises with 3-4 sets of 6-15 reps
- Day 2– Chest and triceps, 4, 3 exercises with 3-4 sets of 6-15 reps
- Day 3: Rest
- Day 4: Legs, 5 exercises with 3-4 sets of 6-15 reps
- Day 5: Shoulders, 4 exercises with 3-4 sets of 6-15 reps
- Days 6 and 7– Rest
The split routine workouts given above do not include cardio or the smaller muscle groups such as abs and calves. The recovery of smaller muscles can be quick and done every other day. Keeping them for the end and simply alternating them is a wise split workout strategy.