T Nation

Help on Split


This is my first post and I have to say the best site I've found. I am a new lifter and started 8 months ago. After reading everthing I could find, buying a set of weights, good running shoes, and changing my eating habits, I have managed to lose 26 pounds. I was at about 201 and now weigh 175 at 5' 10"+

The beer belly is gone and I have some definition in my muscle. My wife started with me and she is looking great. I lift twice a week and jog 3 miles three to four days a week. Anyway, my question is how I can split my routine which so far has been a full body workout. I have concentrated mostly on the compounds. I do Deadlifts, Squats, Bench Press, Upright Barbell Rows, Lat Pulldowns (Cable), and seated military press. Sometimes (not often) I mix in preacher and hammer curls, incline and decline dumbell presses. I also do weighted cable crunches for the abs, I usually do these on jogging days. Anyway, I think I am at the point where I have gotten lean enough and want to put on some more muscle, but I would like to change the routine into a split. I am a little confused as to how to split them as I am afraid I will work the same muscles if I don't do the lifts on the right days. I would like to stay with the compounds and add some isolation lifts. But after doing my full body I am too pooped to do anything else. Sorry for the rambling, but any insight will be greatly appreciated by this new 52 year-old lifter.


Hey awesome progress.

as for a split sure do it. I think it good to change it up from time to time. Upper lower, push/pull/legs, etc. etc..

I say with your training age being so young still I would just simply go with one of the program articles on the site get a bit of experience from them and build a personal library of what works.

Maybe something TOTALLY different from what you are used to like CT's HSS-100, or maybe an EDT split 2 upper two lower. really its endless and they will all give rrsults if you put the work in.

Once again nice job keep on doing it,


I don't suggest body part split routines. No other reason than they suck. That's just my opinion though.


Thanks guys for the feedback. I really like the full body using the compounds. I have seen good results so far. I wouldn't mind staying with the compounds because from what I read they do more for you than other lifts. I guess what I didn't state clearly, is that I would like to stay with the compounds, but split them into 2 or 3 workouts a week. I could do more sets of each that way. Right now I only do 3 sets and when I get finished, I'm worn out. It takes about 1 hour to do them. But since these compounds hit the primary and the assistor/stabilizer muscles too, I don't want to use the wrong split and work the same muscles before thay have had a chance to recover.


Nope you were clear and I stand by my above advice. Really most of the programs here are all based in compound movements as the first meat and tater exercise(s) of the day.

Take a look at some of the articles and programs in them.


Here is a very simple program I put a friend on, with very good results:

Day 1:
Bench press

Reverse flyes

Day 2:

Cuban Presses

That's the whole program. Alternate back and forth between the two big lifts (1 warm-up set of each and 3 or 4 working sets; two or three sets of the third exercise). You've got some external rotation and rotator cuff work in there, too. You can work your abs on the days you do cardio. Try this for a few months while you read through the site and decide on an appealing, more complex workout; in the meantime, you'll get good results from this.

By the way, you're doing quite a bit of cardio for someone looking to put on muscle. If I were you, I'd halve the total distance, run the first half mile as a warm-up, and then alternate 30 sec sprints with 90 seconds of a slower pace. (Warm down or you'll be in pain!) You'll improve your wind, possibly put on muscle in your legs, not interfer too much with gains from your weight lifting, and drop fat. Do this only twice a week, not three though (give your body two or three days a week to recover from your workouts and you'll get better results than if you hammer, hammer, hammer).

Gotta say, I'm impressed by the rigourous program you put yourself on and the great results you've gotten so far.

Good luck


Is what you're doing right now not putting on enough muscle for you?

If it is, keep doing what you were doing. If not, I suggest what Phil suggested and trying something completely different. it will be good for you as your a young training age and it will be sure to bring results. If you want to be like a bodybuilder, try CT's HSS-100. If you want to be more of an athlete, try something more like Westside for skinny bastards.

Either way, don't go crazy trying to find the perfect program. There is none.


How about doing a fulbody routine instead of worrying how to split it up?


Thanks agin Phill, I have been reading up a storm and actually overlooked the most important link on this site for beginners. The "dummies link." There is some good stuff in there.


Thanks Redbones, I am doing a lot of cardio. I have reached my first goal of leaning out and melting the body fat off. I also run bleachers and sprint the straight away 100 meters and walk the curves. I mix it up but have gravitated to more of jogging than the Higher intensity cardio. Since I have leaned out a lot, I don't want to lose much more weight and would like to add more muscle (eating more). I plan on dropping to two days of cardio and wanted to do three days of weights instead of the two a week I've been doing. I thought that a split would be good since I really do have (for me anyway) a pretty rigorous lifting session. At the end I am pretty tired and sometimes can't get a quality lift. I though splitting it up would be good.