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Training Split

Johnny5

Johnny5

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Hey everyone, thought I'd post my training split and see what you think. I used to train only 1 body part per week. This is my old split:

Mon: Back/Calves
Tue: Chest
Wed: Legs
Thu: Triceps/Shoulders
Fri: Biceps/Calves
Sat: OFF
Sun: OFF

Now, I've got some good results with this. But I think some body parts need to be trained twice a week, like biceps and triceps, and also my back since it's lagging behind a bit. Since I'm a 6'0 ectomorph, I think this new split should be pretty good, but I'm afraid if I may be overtraining...

Mon: Back/Biceps/Calves
Tue: Chest/Shoulders/Triceps
Wed: Legs
Thu: Back/Biceps/Calves
Fri: Shoulders/Triceps
Sat: OFF
Sun: OFF

I'm afraid of bunching up too many muscle groups in one session that I may lose mass. What's your input on this split? Thanks!
 
El Freako

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Its quite hard to give a qualified response without an actual detailed program. Training muscle-groups twice a week is by no means over-training, you can train them 3 times a week if you want to depending on your volume of training.

Why aren't you training legs twice a week too?
 
tim290280

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I think you'll find that frequency is actually a good thing.

Key Points:
Compound movements - they are the basis.
Train movements - isolation is so 1990.
Biggest muscle groups require the most work - i.e. legs and back.
Overtraining is largely myth - real overtraining is really hard to do unless you are training all day every day. Most normal people just under recover. This means food and rest.
Progression is still key - improve or give up.

The best bicep builders aren't curls they are chinups and rows.

I'd change from this:
Mon: Back/Biceps/Calves
Tue: Chest/Shoulders/Triceps
Wed: Legs
Thu: Back/Biceps/Calves
Fri: Shoulders/Triceps
Sat: OFF
Sun: OFF

To this:
Day 1 Back/chest/biceps/triceps/calves
Day 2 Quads/hammys/shoulders
Day 3 Rest or cardio
Day 4 Chest/back/triceps/calves/biceps
Day 5 Hammys/quads
Day 6 rest or cardio
Day 7 rest

As it spreads the work better and allows more days to do something else. But of course this is absolutely meaningless without actual exercises, sets and reps and the meso cycle changes.
 
Johnny5

Johnny5

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Thanks so much for the great tips and advice, tim290280.

I really like the idea of doing chin-ups instead of the usual barbell curl. For a while I was doing very heavy curls until I injured my forearm tendon (I also had wrist tendonitis a while back too). I had to make do with the ez-bar, and it totally shot down me ego. :tear:

I'll give you an example of one of my workouts, today I did chest/shoulders/triceps:

Chest:
Incline Bench Press (5 sets, last set I did rest-pause for about 2 more sets)
Incline Flyes (4 sets, lots of squeezing)
Dumbbell bench-press (4 sets going heavy)
Decline push-ups (2 sets)

At this point my chest is pumped I feel great. My shoulders are ready to go because they've warmed up big time with my chest workout.

Behind the Neck Press (4 sets, heavy, but my damn shoulders are tired, but I'm really comfortable)
Seated Side Laterals (4 sets)
Front Raises (3 sets, on a 45 degree chair - old school)
Bent of Laterals (2 sets)

My shoulders are toasted. But I still have another shoulder workout for the week. Now my triceps are more then ready to go. At this point I'm scared if I'm over training, so I want to blast my triceps and run out of the gym and fuel my body with some protein and carbs.

Dumbbell Skull Crushers (3 sets)
Cable pushdowns (4 sets)
Kickbacks (2 sets, lightweight)
Dips (till failure)

That's not too bad right? I try to stay in the gym for as little time as possible. I know that smaller muscle groups don't need as much time to rest so I rest no more then a minute. I think I wrote too much.

What's your split like, tim290280?
 
tim290280

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Chest:
Incline Bench Press (5 sets, last set I did rest-pause for about 2 more sets)
Incline Flyes (4 sets, lots of squeezing) I don't see the point of flys
Dumbbell bench-press (4 sets going heavy) I'd almost leave this till your next chest session and do a few more incline sets (and no inclines in the next chest workout)
Decline push-ups (2 sets) ?? not sure what you mean. Plus these are a finisher at the end of a workout, not at the end of a bodypart.

At this point my chest is pumped I feel great. My shoulders are ready to go because they've warmed up big time with my chest workout. You don't need to move from 1 body part to the next. You can do them in tandem. Such as the dips straight after the bench. In terms of volume it is hard to say as reps aren't included and neither is relative loading. At a guess the volume is on the high side and indicates that probably a lot of the sets are more about warming up and pumping than actually lifting.

Behind the Neck Press (4 sets, heavy, but my damn shoulders are tired, but I'm really comfortable) These aren't the best for the shoulder. DB presses or military presses are better.
Seated Side Laterals (4 sets)
Front Raises (3 sets, on a 45 degree chair - old school) I don't see the point when you have already done bench and shoulder presses.
Bent of Laterals (2 sets)

My shoulders are toasted. But I still have another shoulder workout for the week. Now my triceps are more then ready to go. At this point I'm scared if I'm over training, so I want to blast my triceps and run out of the gym and fuel my body with some protein and carbs.Don't be as there is virtually no chance that one workout would ever do that. You'd tear a muscle before you'd ever overtrain in one session (unless you are dehydrated). Shoulders also don't need that much volume. A couple of sets of presses and a couple each for rear and side heads of the delt should be heaps.

Dumbbell Skull Crushers (3 sets) Not great on the elbows, but regardless should be either an activation for dips or dips first.
Cable pushdowns (4 sets)
Kickbacks (2 sets, lightweight) Lame exercise
Dips (till failure)First or even straight after bench.

You don't need much work for the triceps if you have done a lot of heavy pressing. More need for finishing to give them direct work (mainly if they are lagging). I've found that you do have to train arms directly but most of the effort should be on big exercises with just a couple of sets of a curl or extension.

My split is in my log (link in signature). I don't actually have a "split". Basically I train 4 days of weights a week (1-2days cardio) with the first exercise being whole body (olympic lift or deadlift) and then an upper or lower body supporting movement and then accessories. I actually find standard splits to be too light on on too many days.
 
El Freako

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As Tim said, you don't need that much volume for the shoulders and tris if you're doing them with chest. You're probably better off just doing 1 or 2 exercises each and putting more intensity into those exercises.

Eg.
Chest:
Incline Bench Press (5x5@80-90%)
Dumbbell bench-press (4 sets working up to a heavy rep max)
Weighted Dips (4 sets til rep failure)
Dumbbell Shoulder Press (4 sets heavy)
Bent-over Laterals (2x15)
Dumbbell Skull Crushers (3x12)
Cable pushdowns (2x15)

and then maybe...
Decline push-ups (til failure)
 
Johnny5

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Thanks a lot guys this is some really great advice. It's back to the drawing board for me.
 

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