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Daily Undulating Periodization?


Hey guys,

I have been looking into daily undulating periodization and it seems like an interesting means of increasing frequency for strength and size. For most of my training I have simply done an upper/lower split twice a week so I feel a bit more uncertain when programming full body training/DUP. My main goal is increasing my front squat and deadlift numbers. In addition I would like some upper body hypertrophy (I don’t focus on increasing bench press or overhead press because I have had various shoulder surgeries from rugby injuries). Have any of you had any experience with Daily Undulating periodization?

This is the plan I wrote up including a speed/technique day, strength day and a volume day for the lifts I want to improve as well as an additional day with some pump work.

Day 1:
Front Squat: Heavy: 3x3
Romanian deadlift: 4x8
Weighted pushups: 4x8
Facepulls+ab work

Day 2:
Front Squat: Lighter speed work for 6x3
Deadlift: Lighter Speed Work for 6x3
Weighted pushups: 3x12
Rows: 4 sets
Curls: 3 sets

Day 3:
Deadlift: Heavy: 3x3
Paused Front Squats: 4x6
Weighted pushups: 3x10
Facepulls+ab work

Day 4:
Rows: 4-6 sets
Lateral raises: 4 sets high reps
Rear delt work: 4 sets
Curls 5 sets
Band pushdowns 2-3 sets

What are your thoughts on this set up for daily undulating periodization? Any criticism would be appreciated!


I don’t know the exact nature of your shoulder problems, but there might be some exercises for upper body pushing that you can load up on.

Some examples:
-Floor Press
-Board Press
-Bench Press with Chains
-Reverse Band Bench Press

And you can mix and match these too.

Can you do any overhead work?

Like maybe light high rep seated dumbbell snatches, or cuban presses, overhead shrugs, shoulder press lockouts, or something like neutral grip one arm db presses?

I mention those exercises specifically because often people with shoulder issues can do these pain free and can even improve shoulder health.

Just to restate, I’m not telling you these will work, just some food for thought regarding your shoulders.

One thing I like about your set up is that you’re not going crazy with extra fluff work.

It’s a little hard to give any specific suggestions without knowing anything about your level of experience and development under the iron and without any percentages.

If your a beginner you could just repeat that set up ad nauseam, but if you’re more advanced, you’ll want to to have two blocks. An accumulation block and an intensification block.

Accumulation would have more volume and lower intensities and intensification would be less volume and higher intensities.

In the accumulation, you’ll have heavy enough work to maintain or even increase strength and enough volume for body comp and conditioning and for the intensification you’ll have just enough volume to maintain conditioning and body comp and the intensity to drive your maxes up.


Cheers for the input!

Overhead press is not an option. I do not have the proper mobility for the overhead position. I have been doing high rep lateral raises twice a week and I have fairly round/thick shoulders. I find that with my shoulder injuries, my chest lags the most while my shoulders and especially triceps experience development from horizontal pressing. Weighted pushups tend to give me a decent contraction in my chest. I also don’t have chains or bands. I tried close grip bench and had a fair amount of pain. I’ll try floor press or board press to see if I can do it pain free.

Yeah I tried to minimize fluff work (even though I enjoy it) as I know that frequent squatting and deadlifting will be quite taxing. As far as my lifting experience, my front squat PR is 335lb (150kg), and my deadlift PR is 465lb, 210kg (although I think I have a bit more in me, I haven’t tested in a long time and it was a very fast/smooth lift). My bodyweight is 180lb (81kg).

I haven’t been writing my own programs for that long however because I used to follow the programs written for us on my rugby team(I don’t play anymore). This idea of accumulation and intensification seems interesting to me. How would you go about doing this? Increase sets or reps during the accumulation phase and then during intensification maintain sets and reps on the lower end of the spectrum and increase weight on a weekly basis? Also how long would be needed for each phase? Would a deload be necessary between the two phases?

Would love to hear about how to program accumulation and intensification phases. Once again thanks for the response!


I haven’t done DUP before, but I have read about it and understand the general principles.

I use Westside principles using a total body split to accommodate for work since I can’t have crazy sore legs and back and be able to do my job well. So I do have experience with 2-4x week whole body each day and I do split my work between accumulation and intensification blocks.

My blocks are 3-5 microcycles long. Sometimes 5 for accumulation and not more than 3 for intensification. Any longer with the higher percentages I start getting joint and sleep issues.

How many years seriously have you been at this? I mean, if you’ve only seriously trained for a couple of years, you’re probably still a beginner to intermediate vs if it took many years to get those numbers.

As far as sets and reps, prilepin’s table can be a very good guide. Especially for speed/technique and strength days. For volume days, you might pick something light to moderate and the higher end of reps on the table or pick a more traditional rep scheme.

Don’t look at this as a rule, just a very nebulous guideline, but maybe do your accumulation with 60-85% depending on the day and 70-95% for the intensification.

Mike Zourdos seems to be the best ‘authority’ on DUP so make sure you read up on some his stuff.


Hey Fletch1986 I have to ask where in Texas and how did you get your screen name? I had a brother that passed when I was ten yo and his name was Fletcher he was born in 1986 and we lived in spring Texas! I’m sorry I don’t know how to pm in this site. Anyways I felt like I was home when I saw your screen name then I saw Texas. Too weird there are no accidents. Anyways back to whatever topic this is. Sorry for high jacking. Get back at me !


That is not DUP

Do what doesn’t hurt, but you need to at least follow the guidelines of DUP.


I just noticed in the plan you layed out that you use different variations for the front squat and deadlift.

With DUP, one the core factors involved with it is doing the same exact lifts each day.

No paused front squats, no romanian deadlifts.

Just front squats and deadlifts.

When people use the label ‘DUP’, they’re typically referring to principles layed out by Mike Zourdos and when you start doing different variations of the lifts it really isn’t fair to call it that.

Having said that, it might work for you.