Examples of Training Schedules?

Hey, I’ve been back lifting after a long layoff. I’m wondering what kind of schedules people are using. I know everyone is different, and the bottom line is that you have to do what works for you, but I would like to see what others are doing for some ideas.

This is my current routine. I do three workouts and cycle through, usually getting in 5-6 sessions a week.

A) Chest & Tris - 9 to 12 sets of flat, incline, & decline. I mix barbell, dumbell, and machine. 6-9 sets of tris, mostly cable stuff.

B) Back & Shoulders - 9-12 sets of back. Mix of grips, rows and pull downs. I do one light set of dead lifts and one light set of power cleans every session. 3 sets for each shoulder group (9 total). Finish off with a couple forearm exercises. I alternate between doing shoulders first or doing back first with each workout.

C) Legs & Bis. 8 sets of full legs (usually the sled & the hack squat sled). 6 sets of isolation (leg curls and leg extensions). 6-9 sets of curls - mix of barbell, dumbell, machine, hammer, cable, preacher…I usually pick 3 exercises. I alternate between doing legs first or bis first.

I do probably 3-5 sets of abs every day, and then pick one session where I start the workout with 10 hard ab exercises (Every 4th workout). I do calves on the C workout, and then either on A or B depending on how I feel.

I also do about 10 minutes of cardio and 10 minutes of stretching each session.

So far, so good. I’ve been pushing myself and recovering well.

Looks like a solid plan, keep it up.

I can’t speak for everyone, but in general, there seems to be roughly two camps of trainees; those who train bodyparts more frequently (e.g. you), and those who train bodyparts once a week.

Then you have the ones in-between who’re a bit more instinctive/advanced with their training (who do a mix of both depending on what bodypart and how the bodypart responds and whether it needs more work…e.g. legs once a week, chest twice a week)

The way it’s set out isn’t as important as over-all progress…never forget that and get carried away with the details (you likely just need a short rest, or more food if gains stagnate)

For future reference, you may want to curb the total volume of sets when your poundages get really heavy/intensity increases (since this can impede your gains)…so for the average person, you’d only be looking at roughly 8-12 working sets total for each bodypart per week…rather than up to 12 sets per muscle group per session (assuming that’s what you meant and not total weekly volume?). This would be different if you only trained bodyparts once a week, or the sets weren’t heavy at all.

Well at the moment id say you’re pretty much doing high frequency, high volume which is great if it’s working but it may catch up with you at some point, just something you’ll need to keep an eye out for but as it’s working, crack on.
Personally, I do a 5 day split. Training everything once a week. Legs, chest, back, shoulders and arms. I usually do 3-4 sets of bi’s on back day and same for tri’s on chest day only because they’re a week point and I they recover without any problem.
Generally the consensus tends to be if it’s not sore, you can train it. Some guys take a week to get over a heavy leg session, others 3 days, it’s all about adjusting it depending on your recovery capacity.

Thanks! Its good to know where I sit compared to what is typical. Believe me, I’d like to cut my working sets down as I’m just spending too much time in the gym.

12 working sets a week per body part? So if I split that into two sessions, would I maybe say do 3 sets of flat bench and 3 sets of incline dumbells one day, and then 3 sets of decline bench and 3 sets of flat flys another day? I would probably need to push my sets a little harder as well.

i’m less specific… Upper Body (push dominate)/“Dynamic” Legs/Upper Body (pull dominate)/Heavy Legs/Arms: 5-day split, modified West Coast…

Based on some of the comments here, I think I’m going to split out another day. The two things I’ve noticed is that back/shoulder day becomes a marathon session, as does legs and bis. I may create a shoulder/bi day and see how that goes. I end up missing about 2 days a week anyway (for example, I did a spin class and ran this morning. Tomorrow I’ll probably spin and swim). That will put me on about a once a week per body part schedule.


I do an upper/lower body split. Low volume each workout 2x’s a week. A sample week would look like this:

Monday upperbody/ 3-4 sets per bodypart-rep targets of 8’s, 10’s 12’s or 15’s. Which I rotate.

Tuesday lowerbody/ 5-6 sets for quads/ 3 for hamstrings and calves. Will mix in some 20-30 rep sets for quads.

Wednesday and Thursday-cardio only.

Friday repeat Monday-different reps.

Saturday or Sunday repeat Tuesday-different reps.

This gives me good recovery, doesn’t kill my joints-I’m 46-and works with my long work shifts.

The basic idea is low volume and two full days off before working a bodypart again.