T Nation

Changing Workout


Currently I do a three day split routine, Legs/Shoulders, Biceps/Back, & Triceps/Chest. Looking to change the routine up but still want to stick with the three day split. Wondering if I change it to the following or will the muscle groups be too closely related:

or change to this:

Just looking for some changes and still make gains. Thanks in advance.


When you state your looking to make gains, can you be more specific, are your ideologies more Strength based or Hypertrophy based? Are you a body builder? Im not a fan of strict splits like this, I like the 5/3/1 approach and am now using a heavy assistance template. I dont think Biceps and Tris need their own day. Im not of the belief that biceps need a super amount of attention, now Im not saying no attention, really 5-10 direct sets max for me.

Legs and back is a rough day IMO, and feel these two in many ways directly correlate and like with the chest and shoulders I feel you will not get excellent training results in both areas. I see Im totally not answering your question so what about big body part small body part split.

Chest and Back
Back and bis
Shoulders and Tris

I feel a 4 day split would work better, I have always liked the push pull of a chest back day, and if you could do 4 days devoting one day to legs only I feel would be beneficial.

good luck


Matty has some good ideas for a 4 day split. I think if you want to go with a 3 day split you need to look at Push/Pull/Legs and then figure out what exercises you're going to use for those days to figure out the order (and amount of rest in between days).

Something like this could work:

Back/Bi's (Pull)
Chest/Shoulders/Tri's (Push)

I would then give ample time between Legs and Back and vice versa. On the Push day you could always vary focus between OHP and Flat/Incline pressing. I think some German Volume Training in this fashion would produce some decent results (given diet is in line with the training).


No, definitely not a bodybuilder. Just looking to make some gains. I feel my diet is in check. I eat approximately 3000 - 3500 calories a day. I have one cheat day which is on Saturday. Breakfast is 5 egg whites with three eggs plus 1/2 cup of oatmeal; snack 1 is 1 cup 1% cottage cheese, 1 english muffin with natural peanut butter, 1 protein shake; lunch is a lean meat or poultry with a serving of veggies;prior to workout is nitric oxide; after workout is a protein shake; dinner is similar to lunch; before bed is casein protein. I'm looking to gain about 15 lbs of lean muscle. I know there is a such thing as muscle memory just wanting to change things up. Okay please explain hypertrophy vs strength.


Hypertrophy training where muscle size and getting bigger is the main goal. This usually occurs where your training is centered around sets wherein the rep range is in the 8-12 range I would think at around 70% of your 1 rep max.

Strength training is when the goal is getting stronger and not necessarily bigger, this usually is in a rep range of 2-5 reps of 85%-90% of your 1 rep maximum and bringing up your 1 rep max.

I say fuck it do both, concentrate on strength on the big lifts (DL, Squat, Bench and MP) and do a shit ton of chins and rows for hypertrophy gains.

But Ddot is spot on with his split and take into effect rest which is where your growth will occur


You should check out built like a badass

its a Joe Defranco program.
its very solid.

3 days a week 2 upper one lower day in the middle

Its like a horizontal upper for one day and the 2nd is centered around the pullup
there are enough different elements of big squat, or big dead, or big bench
mixed with some hypertrophy accessory work for swoleness
and some jumps plyo's
and 'finishers' to make you feel athletic

I am probably going to go back to that style of training
after I get some more immediate strength goals out of the way.


Matty, Ddot, and KM have some good practical advice.

Out of curiosity, was there a particular reason you're posting on the old geezers' forum? (Aside from the fact that we tend to be much more civil than the other fourms) Generally, people lifting this long tend to have basic programs figured out and just need help with details. I was just wondering.


I'm posting due to the fact that I'm 40 years old. I lifted for about a year straight approximately 7 years ago but gave it up. Don't have an honest reason why I quit. I decided at the beginning of this year I wanted to start again but this time I plan on sticking with it as long as my body will allow me. When I first started this year I had a bodybuilder set me up on a program, after about six weeks I talked to a personal trainer, he stated that I should change my program about every six weeks. So I made some changes but I'm not educated enough with all the exercises in regards to what to do. I don't have a problem reading books to get a better understanding of exercises, so if you have some suggestions by all means make them.


Welcome, Drty070x. Some people here have limited experience lifting, so that's fine. Or, like me, have years experience but a lot of it was wrong. Good idea to get started right.


Interesting thing here--lots of the guys in this side of the house have been doing it for years and are absolutely solid, a few of us are not only older but also beginners--like me just 4 months into lifting weights.

My thoughts on this, and definitely not advice ! is to think of what you are doing as a SMART project i.e
S specific
M measurable
A achieveable]
R realistic
T timely.

So not so much " know where you are trying to go" ie having a clear goal, but also having a measurement tool so that you know if you are getting there and whether what you want is realistic over the time frame that you can give it.

For me my mantra has been ' lighter faster fitter stronger' weight (and body fat) relatively easy to measure and set realistic goals of fat loss, stronger in that pbs are measureable as is overall workload, faster --that my 1.5 mile time is still coming down etc.

From this i guess that waht i would be asking you is :
Do you know where you are going ?
Does your programme match those goals ?
Are you achieving your goals ?

If your programme is working then why change ?

Also if you are where i think you are (i may be wrong) ie a beginner then should not the focus be on :
Simplicity--just the big compound movements
Workload--just lifting em up and putting em down !!!

Well thats me done --over to the experienced guys .


So I made some changes but I'm not educated enough with all the exercises in regards to what to do. I don't have a problem reading books to get a better understanding of exercises, so if you have some suggestions by all means make them.

drty070x it sounds like maybe you just want to add a few different exercises and maybe not switch up your split?


And it looks like I could have saved my money as there is workout video's on T-Nation.LOL


IMO I really would forget about a BB split, at this point hitting body parts once a week would not be enough, as KMC defranco's built like a badass is an excellent option, I also like a lot of Chad Waterburys stuff espescially his TBT protocol. just my .02