Lifting- One Muscle Group Per Day?

I have a question. I lift upper body, cardio, then lower body on consecutive days. One on my friends stated I will not make gains due to the muscle takes 7 days for it to break down and build up, and to only work out one muscle group a day. What does everyone think right wrong maybe.

Thanks again,


If he’s right, it’s going to be news to a lot of people.

He’s talking straight out of Fiction Fitness magazine. I’d say the majority of coaches here at T-Nation recommend hitting the same muscle group several times each week (Chad Waterbury has suggested up to 4 times a week).

It’s all dependent on what you’re doing each session, and what your goals are. If you’re doing the exact same workout on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, then no…you won’t get any better. But if you vary the reps/sets/weights each time, you’ll get further.

So, you can certainly train the same muscle group multiple times each week.

You can make gains whether you train once a week or 6 days a week. The body adapts to whatever you do, within reason.

I have done once a week routines with good results as well as more frequent routines.

If you train infrequently, try to train with more intensity, if you train more frequently try not to balance things so you don’t burn out.

I think you have a lot of reading to do on this site. :slight_smile: There’s a ton of really excellent exercise science here. Hit the articles and go to town.

But to quickly answer, of course that’s bogus unless you push yourself so hard you NEED seven days to recover. This is one of the reasons going to failure is often a bad idea. Read some of Chad Waterbury’s columns for more background on this. Also check out C.T. and Staley, among many of the excellent contributors.

Think about it. Once every 7 days. That’s only 4 times a month! In order to hit all your muscle groups once every 7 days you would never be able to take a day off. Train 2 muscles per workout. Mon: Shoulders. Tues: Quads, hamstrings. Wed: Back and Biceps. Thurs: Chest and Triceps. Friday: Off. Start rotation over again on Saturday. Work calves in 2-3 times a week as well as abs.

Ever seen a BIG SOB that works on a farm, or a lumber jack type. Think they only go to work one day a week and get huge. hell no. LOL.

Yes a split like you mentioned can and does work, but so does full body and every other damn type of w/o. The trick is to mix it up. Find what works best for you and keeps your interest