T Nation

Pros and Cons on This Split?


I just after some comments on the pros and cons of doing a 4 day a week routine. Take for this example that i do 20 exercises a week, 5 exercises a workout. These would stay the same exercises and set/rep schemes in both instances.

routine 1:
mon - chest+bi
tues - back
thurs - legs
fri - delts+tris

routine 2:
mon - push
tues - pull
thurs - push
fri - pull

so basically i organise the same exercises each week into once a week in routine 1 or twice a week obviously in routine 2. The exact details of the split whether i put this with that etc on routine 1 doesnt matter too much to me at the moment. I'm just wondering what i gain and lose from organising them the 2 different ways, with gaining frequency or losing rest etc. Just after your experienced opinions really. Thanks


I don't see any cons with either routine... though, with all routines, nothing works forever. I know you said you don't mind what order you train each body part but personally, I wouldn't want to train back and legs back to back like that or bis before back IMHO.


The main downside I can think of is that you can probably get better results from training more than 4 days a week on a body part split.
With push/pull if every day a high volume and you're training everything twice a week you can probably get away with it.
But if your goal is bodybuilding, you might be best off with a bodypart split.


Routine one looks like it would work alright if you can only work out 4 days a week due to other commitments.

Routine Two, Big Con === NO LEGS !!!!!?????

Given this go with routine one imo.


I think the push and pull includes upper and lower body, i could be wrong though? It's not a bad idea, although sometimes you get a carryover effect that could burn out certain muscles even though splitting push vs. pull. You could also try upper on two days and lower on two days. totally depends what the goal is though as people have mentioned.


Ah maybe i wasnt 100% clear. The quads and calves would be on push day, hams on pull. The whole body is split into push / pull movements. And yes i did wonder if an upper / lower split might work better, since shoulders would at least be involved 4 times a week on the push / pull

I wondered if there was a trade off in terms of frequency vs. rest? or if 3-4 days should be plenty anyway


Ah well then that could work alright, although the shoulder thing is a valid point.
Mon: Upper
Tues: Lower
Thurs: Upper
Fri: Lower
Should work find doing this sort of thing, thats hitting everything twice a week minus the shoulder problem.


your only 150 , i was like you started at 125/130 n squatin about 60 WTF ( we all gotta start somewhere).i also over thought and over anelised things BIG F'n MISTAKE. see what i posted you in your post in SUPPS N NUT/N and start S/L 5x5 .keep it simple ,lift heavy compound lifts n eat alot


the words push and pull dotn mean anything unless the specific exercises done on those days are included.

Push and pull are simply labels. There is absolutely no reason to forumulate a program based on those labels alone. A push pull routine can be great or it can be terrible. It depends solely on which exercises are selected, for what reason, and when theyre performed compared to the other exercises.

If youre as small as the oher guy claims you are, you probably arent experienced enough to design your own split. Use it as a learning experience but dont expect to get things right on your first shot.


strong lifts is garbage


S/L may not be all that but from a small guys point of view its simple to follow and helps build strength .
all i know is it got me from 125/130 to 179lb n DL'ing 310 for 5 and squatin 220 for 5 , no big numbers compared to you guys but from where i started im happy with my progress and it may help the op.


Thanks bonez. I see what you mean with the specifics. The first split is a recent dorian yates one, which i ddecided to try to the letter, rather than making it up myself this time, so far working very well.

It was a theory question really, as in assuming the exercises involved were the best ones for me at the moment, what difference would a once a week versus twice a week make. So just changing that one variable whats the pros and cons? For instance if for chest i did decline bench, incline db bench and flyes on a monday, what difference is it doing decline monday and incline+flyes on thursday? same volume, double frequency. I guess the only real way to find out is pursue my current split for a few more weeks until i run out of steam on that, and then try the 2 way split and pursue the same.


Yeah i saw that mate. Ive done heavy compunds last 3 or so years, no probs there. Made a lot of strength gains, and got a lot of experience of which lifts do and dont go with my shoulders, elbows etc. i'd be heavier if i sorted my diet out, and now trying to address that. i suspect ive gained to the limit of my diet, only recently have i finally upped the volume and really looked at the protein. i'd mistakenly thought it was about alright, when looking back it was about half what it should be. hopefully that will break through soon and start the scales moving again.

This thread was just on the split question though, i was interested in what people had found in the past etc.


yeah i know what you mean about diet n being bigger . i still struggle to get dowen 3000/3500 cals a day and at the end of most days the thought of my last meal or even a shake makes me gag
also for F'n years i badly underestimated how much i needed to gain .


If this is what you meant, then you should have done some reading, look in the Best of T-Nation sticky in this forum and have a read of the Training Frequency topic, by Modok I think. He has some good ideas on training frequency and what has worked for him which may also work for you if your suited to it.


Oh if its just a theoretical Q then I'd say it depends what youve been doing for the past few months and how your body responds to different frequency. One isnt inherently better than the other.

Try it out. Rule of thumb for volume and frequency. THe more frequent you train a muscle the less volume you should use. How much is up to you.

Id reduce the volume by 25-30% if you train a muscle 2x per week in a 6-10 range. If you train in a lower rep range you may want to cut the volume more


You're such a meanie!


Right ok, thats worth remembering. so if i reduce by 25-30% thats 1 in 4 or 1 in 3 exercises. So if i did like my example above decline bench, incline db and flyes all in one workout on a once a week, you'd drop to decline smith one day, incline db the next, and drop the flyes altogether? Interesting i'll see how it pans out soon


Heres an example. DOnt do exactly this. I like a lot of volume and I can handle it at this point.

When I train chest once a week while gaiing I do

preexahus with Pec Deck 3-4 sets none to failure 8-20 reps ramping the weight
incline barbell or incline dumbell press 4 sets ramped
flat db press 3 sets ramped
seated low cable flys 3 sets ramped
finish with more pec deck or a different fly machine 3-4 sets

If I train chest twice a week Ill still preexhaust the same both days but one day will be 2 presses and 1 fly the other day will be 2 flys and 1 press. Second day is usually HS iso incline, some form of cable fly and some sort of machine fly. 3-4 sets for each ramped weight


Very nice example, might have to put this sort of idea into my training so I can hit stuff twice a week.
With you being able to handle the volume and judging from you pre-exhuasting at the beginning of the work owt and your pics and wealth of knowledge you must be pushing some serious weight. Just wondering, what sorta weights are you doing for the major lifts you do ?

Sorry for thread hijack, just interested and I'm sure we'd all like to see what the big man is up to.