T Nation

Should I Try A Split?


I’ve been lifting for about a year and a half now and since then have gone from 148 to 188 so far (5’11, 18 years old). I originally started out doing Waterbury’s TBT and got up to 170 in a couple months and from there did some more cardio/sport specific stuff for awhile so my weight gain hit a plateau to say the least. From there I tried WS4SB and maybe gained 1 pound over a 10 week period.

In the past few months I started doing 5x5 and after about 14 weeks was up to ~188. Now I’m not sure where to go from here because my weight has hit a plateau once again despite increasing calorie intake by ~400-500 calories. I’m still making strength gains but no mass gains anymore.

I’ve been thinking about trying a bodypart/bodybuilding type of split but I’ve had people telling me to just stick with the basics for awhile longer since I’m still considered a beginner and splits are for more advanced trainees. But I’ve also read things contradicting that online so I’m at a point where I’m not sure which direction to go.

Would it be wise to try out a body part split routine or just stick with something like 5x5 or 3x3? My main goal is mass gain right now and to hit 205lbs.

Thanks for any advice/help in advance.

How are your strength levels? If you are still weak, I wouldn’t suggest bodypart splits right now.

However, if you have good levels of strength to go with your new size, then give it a try. Something like Christian Thibaudeau’s “Superhero” workout would be good to try out for 12 weeks. Or one of the recent splits listed in the articles within the past few months.

Right now my lifts look like this:

Deadlift 360 x 5
Squat 300 x 5
Bench 230 x 5
Military press 160 x 5

Not sure what my 1 rep maxes are since I’ve only been doing 5x5.

Okay, if your goals are to look good naked or help bring up some weak areas, then a training split may work well for you. The Superhero workout is just one good plan that will help bring up your shoulders, arms and upper chest.

If your goals are for performance/athletics, then a “bodybuilding” split will not be ideal. The closest thing to having athletic performance and some “bodybuilding” in a program would be the Westside for Skinny Bastards template. I highly recommend this one and have used it in the past and am using many of the ideas from WS4SB3 in my current training as well.

Thanks for the reply.

Yeah right now I’m just trying to work on gaining mass and shedding some body fat eventually once I’m at a decent size. I’d like to be a lean 200-210.

I don’t have any plans anytime soon to compete in any sports but maybe eventually down the road so I’m not going to worry about that right now.

I tried the WS4SB routine for 10 weeks and didn’t really see much from it. I gained about 0.5-1lb at most and not much gain in strength. It was odd after all the success stories I heard about it. Maybe I should try it again?

The Superhero workout sounds like it may be a good idea for me.

My lagging parts are definitely my chest width, upper chest mass and my arms overall.