T Nation

Help Designing an Upper/Lower Split


#1

Ok, so have been doing 3x a week body part splits, and fullbodies the last couple years, but now I want to try a UPPER LOWER split. I need help because I dont know what excersises would do this the best, I mean it seems crazy to me working the entire upper body in 1 single session.

I know ill be doing upper and lower 2x a week but its alot different than what im used to since I usually do bodypart splits whre im hitting each muscle with 3-4 excerises.

I have had people say to do:

Upper:
bench
rows
Shrugs
bb Curls
Dips

Lower:
Squat
Deads
AB work

Monday/thursday= UPPER
Tues/Friday=LOWER

Seems like it may be overtraing? Yet not enough per muscle? Dam i lost, help a newb out!


#2

please spell right next time


#3

More than thinking about what muscles to workout (like bodypart splits), I like to think more in terms of the movements. For instance, for your upper body: Vertical Push (push press), Horizontal Pull (rows), and etc. The lower body:Quad dominant(Squat), Hip dominant (deadlift). I like to incorporate different kinds of movement.

In a upper/lower split compared to a bodypart split, it seems like there needs to be a lot more exercises b/c one session needs to hit half of your body (upper or lower), BUT just keep in mind that you’ll be doing each session 2X a week rather than 1X a week. Plus, you could also use different (but simliar) exercises in each of the 2 upper & lower session per week.

I’m on an upper/lower split right now and this is how mine looks like:

Monday
Flat BB bench press
DB Rows

Push Press
Weighted Chin-Ups
(Superset the 2)

Weighted Dips
Cable Rope Rows to the neck (this exercise is in Charles Poliquin’s article about 5 best back workouts)
(Superset the 2)

Tuesday
Back Squat
Conventional Powerlifting Deadlift
Bulgarian Split Squats
AB circuit (I usually put 3 exercises and circuit them)

Thursday
DB Flat Bench Press
Pedlay Rows

DB Incline Bench Press
Weighted Pull-Ups
(Superset the 2)

Dips
t-bar rows
(Superset the 2…just in case you didn’t know, I kinda like supersets)

Friday
Front Squat
Romanian Deadlift
DB Swings
Ab Circuit (3 exercises, but different from the ones on Tuesday)

I hope this gives you some idea of what to incorporate in your upper/lower split

P.S.-if you feel that you can’t recover fast enough from your sessions then I suggest:

A)suck it up and continue on (eventually you won’t get sore from this b/c your body will adjust)
B) alter your training (ex’s-give more time for recovery like Lower=Tues/SATURDAY, change exercises, change rest period among other factors that come into play) and then slowly make it more difficult by reducing recovery days, harder exercises, less rest periods among others

I personally like option A b/c I feel that it makes you stronger both physically and mentally, but I’m no professional (just stating my opinon)

Hope this helped you in your search for upper/lower splits…G’luck dude!


#4

look at Eric Cressey’s “Maximum Strength” book. He uses a Upper/Lower body split for 4 days/week routine. Great mix of exercises and loading parameters to avoid overtraining (read this week’s mythbuster article) about overtraining. If you eat and rest sufficiently you won’t be overtrained. Best of luck with it.


#5

Move the curls to the lower day
Do some pullups and shoulder presses on upper day

Oh yea, I went there.


#6

[quote]morstad wrote:
look at Eric Cressey’s “Maximum Strength” book. He uses a Upper/Lower body split for 4 days/week routine. Great mix of exercises and loading parameters to avoid overtraining (read this week’s mythbuster article) about overtraining. If you eat and rest sufficiently you won’t be overtrained. Best of luck with it. [/quote]

I would like to see that article…


#7

[quote]pasteee wrote:
More than thinking about what muscles to workout (like bodypart splits), I like to think more in terms of the movements. For instance, for your upper body: Vertical Push (push press), Horizontal Pull (rows), and etc. The lower body:Quad dominant(Squat), Hip dominant (deadlift). I like to incorporate different kinds of movement.

In a upper/lower split compared to a bodypart split, it seems like there needs to be a lot more exercises b/c one session needs to hit half of your body (upper or lower), BUT just keep in mind that you’ll be doing each session 2X a week rather than 1X a week. Plus, you could also use different (but simliar) exercises in each of the 2 upper & lower session per week.

I’m on an upper/lower split right now and this is how mine looks like:

Monday
Flat BB bench press
DB Rows

Push Press
Weighted Chin-Ups
(Superset the 2)

Weighted Dips
Cable Rope Rows to the neck (this exercise is in Charles Poliquin’s article about 5 best back workouts)
(Superset the 2)

Tuesday
Back Squat
Conventional Powerlifting Deadlift
Bulgarian Split Squats
AB circuit (I usually put 3 exercises and circuit them)

Thursday
DB Flat Bench Press
Pedlay Rows

DB Incline Bench Press
Weighted Pull-Ups
(Superset the 2)

Dips
t-bar rows
(Superset the 2…just in case you didn’t know, I kinda like supersets)

Friday
Front Squat
Romanian Deadlift
DB Swings
Ab Circuit (3 exercises, but different from the ones on Tuesday)

I hope this gives you some idea of what to incorporate in your upper/lower split

P.S.-if you feel that you can’t recover fast enough from your sessions then I suggest:

A)suck it up and continue on (eventually you won’t get sore from this b/c your body will adjust)
B) alter your training (ex’s-give more time for recovery like Lower=Tues/SATURDAY, change exercises, change rest period among other factors that come into play) and then slowly make it more difficult by reducing recovery days, harder exercises, less rest periods among others

I personally like option A b/c I feel that it makes you stronger both physically and mentally, but I’m no professional (just stating my opinon)

Hope this helped you in your search for upper/lower splits…G’luck dude!

[/quote]

Yes, this help alot! thanks for taking the time!


#8

Speaking of Upper and Lower body split I just started sth similar to that… To be a bit more specific:

Monday: Lower body. Reps range 5-8 (relatively heavy stuff )
Quads

  1. 3 sets of back squats
  2. 3 sets of step ups
    Hams
  3. 3 sets of Bulgarian Split Squat
  4. 3 sets on hams machine (yeah, I know)
    Calves
  5. 3 sets of Calf-raises with barebell
  6. 3 sets on calves machine
    Abs:
  7. 3 sets of Weighted Swiss ball crunches
  8. 3 sets of plank- minimum 35 secs each

Tuesday:
Sprints in the park as well as 3 sets of the shuttle exercise followed by short shooting practice [soccer]

Wednesday:
Upper body. It’s my light day so I do a 10-12 reps routine

Chest

  1. 3 sets of Incline DBell Bench Press
  2. 3 sets of Machine Flies
    Back.
  3. 1 set of Pull Ups [I stop just before reaching failure, which is usually around my 12th rep but on a good day might rep out 16 )
  4. 1 set of Chin Ups
  5. 2 sets of Dbell Row
  6. 2 sets on Lat Pull down machine
    Delts:
  7. 3 sets of Dbbell Shoulder Press
  8. 3 sets of Lat Raises
    Biceps:
  9. 2 sets of dbell alternating curls
  10. 1 set of barebell reverse curls
  11. 2 sets of biceps curls on the Incline Bench
    Triceps:
  12. 3 sets of Dips
  13. 3 sets of Triceps Pressdown

Thursday:

2 hours of soccer

Friday:

Lower body 10-16 reps (this shit hurts!)
Quads:

  1. 3 sets of Bbell Jump Squats
  2. 3 sets of Squats
    Hams:
  3. 3 sets of Reverse Lunges
  4. 3 sets of Bulgarian Split Squats
    Calves:
  5. 3 sets of Dbbell calf-raises
  6. 3 sets on the calf machine
    Abs:
  7. 3 sets of Oblique twists
  8. 3 sets of Reverse Crunch.

And finally, Saturday:

Upper body: 5-8 reps
Chest:

  1. 3 sets of Bbell Bench Press
  2. 3 sets of inclince Dbbel Bench press
    Back:
  3. 1 set of weighted Pull ups
  4. 3 sets of Deadlift
  5. 2 sets of T-bar row
    Delts
  6. 3 sets of Dbell or Bbell Shoulder Press
  7. 2 sets of Upright Rows
  8. 1 set of Dbbel front raises
    Biceps:
  9. 3 sets of Bbell Curls
  10. 2 sets of Reverse Dbbell Curls
    Triceps:
  11. 3 sets of weighted dips
  12. 3 sets of Triceps extensions

Sunday
45 minutes of soccer in a local 5-a-side league…

I think I will cut out few exercises as the volume is pretty heavy… Any suggestions?

Or maybe I am just being wimpy? lol