T Nation

Specialization Always First In Routine?

A question re specialized routines (the excellent gold school triceps for example etc).

Doing the quad killer specialization first may seem obvious, but how is it with smaller muscle groups? Always ahead of additional excercises? I understand the application in order to follow proper priorities, but I question putting specialization of smaller muscle groups first in the routine - does it really matter? Isn’t it always bigger muscles, meaning legs, first?

Anyone tried a different approach?

Great Question. For ANY upper body specialization workouts, I will still always do legs first. BUT, I tend to focus on less systemic load exercises though:

  • Leg Press vs Squats
  • Leg Curls vs DLs

In addition, I do not go “all out” on the leg sets. Save the energy for the specialization stuff.
Another reason — perhaps even more important IMO — is that doing Legs AFTER the Specialization will steal some of your ‘pump’ from that work!! Do legs first and thus keep the pump in your upper body when you finish-up the workout!!!

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Anything goes. Whatever you do first will get the most energy before you begin to tire. I have some killer routines with specialized legs shoulders and arms and you nearly puke to get through. Then feel like crap the next day. And I have done short arms only workouts with specialization and made good progress. More resources for recovery and effort in the workout.