T Nation

Starting Out...What Split?

Hey all…I’m just getting back into things after about 2 years off where I was pursuing tang soo do and MMA instead…but didn’t do any lifting other than the occasional pushups every now and then.

My question is, back when I was training, I would do a split like:

day 1: Chest / Shoulders
day 2: Back
day 3: Legs / Abs
day 4: Biceps / Triceps
day 5: Cardio / Off

Then repeat. I thought this was a pretty good way to mix it up, but I’ve been reading some people’s posts and they’re recomending like a Mon / Wed / Fri split and taking the weekend off.

I have the time to go to the gym every day now so it’s not a big deal which body part falls where in the week.

Do you guys (or gals) recommend the 5-day split I mentioned or would the mon/wed/fri thing be best for someone getting back into things?

Thanks a lot.


The split you have outlined is sort of a 20 year old BB routine. That doesn’t make it terrible, but at your present level–coming back after 2 yr layoff–I believe you’ll be better served with a total body workout or at the most a split with 2 days total body done 4 times aweek just because you say you have the time. Depends on your ultimate goal ?fitness? ?strength? How much do you want to do cardio? Actually interesting article right now titled something about superior cycle. Read it, I think you’ll like it. We are all waiting for part deaux.

Thanks. My goal would be to get bigger and be healthier. I don’t know what my bodyfat is, presently, nor do I care really (although I would estimate 17%???). My upper two abs are visible when I flex my stomach which is enough for me. I figure there’s no point in cutting up right from the get go just to display 2 years worth of Burgerking and McDonald lunches/dinners. I’m 5’10" and 185 lbs. I’d like to hit 200 (and no not just because it’s the super duper cool number – but because it’s 15 pounds) in the next two months.

As far as cardio, I don’t want to do too much…My goal is to grow – but be healthier so I wouldn’t mind throwing it in once every 5 days. Plus, going on that fifth day helps me to stay on track. I’m afraid if I don’t go every day and do something (which could even be 30 mins. on the treadmill or stretch and do situps then I’ll get back out of the rhythmn.

I’m a creature of habit – maybe if I make it 6 out of 7 days a week for my first two months, I’ll be good to go and can do situps at home – but until then, I’ll even go there just to do situps to stay on track.