T Nation

Upper/Lower Split Variation


Long time lurker and fan. I really enjoy the info provided on this forum.

Thinking about moving from full body to upper/lower split, as full body seems to be stalling out. Problem is my work schedule absolutely sucks for a "traditional" upper/lower split (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday). Full body has been good considering my best days are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Given that, what about doing upper/lower on these days, alternating weekly (Monday - Upper, Wednesday - Lower, Friday - Upper, Monday - Lower, Wednesday - Upper, Friday - Lower, etc.)? I recognize that the rest time is increased one day per session, as the "traditional" mentioned before allows 2 and 3 day periods, to where this would be 3 and 4 day periods.

Would one extra day in between really matter? I would be doing some light cardio, GPP, etc. on Tuesday and Thursday, but my work literally has me in a different city on these days. My only other option is to get two gym memberships, but that just sucks thinking about it.

What do you all think? This doesn't sound bad to me, given it's still 2 upper and 2 lower sessions every 8 days. Some programs talk about a number of sessions per week, but does the body know that a week is 7 days? Sorry to sound stupid, but I'd like insight before wasting my time.

And if it matters, I'm 35, 6', and 184 lbs. Don't know my BF%. My goals are strength and a little more mass and then maintaining.

Thanks for your assistance.


whats your routine in every lower session?


You seem to have fairly humble goals. So in all honesty 3 days training a week will probably work ok for you.

However, there is no denying if you trained more often you would reach your goals quicker.

In reply to:

"Would one extra day in between really matter? I would be doing some light cardio, GPP, etc. on Tuesday and Thursday"

When your goals are strength and mass, yes an extra day will matter. Cardio will not help you get big and strong (not saying don't do it).


This is ridiculous by the way. Look at the bigger picture.


The rotation you proposed is much better than full body. However, do you have a particular reason for not wanting to split even more? If your goal is mass and strength, a 3 day split of upper-pull/upper-push/legs would be much more beneficial.


I have been in situations where I could only train MWF (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, not Man w/ Woman, sadly)
I did just fine with a whole-ish body routine with maximum effort
Day 1
Hip Dominant, two limb
Quad dominant, single limb
Vertical Press, standing, seated, free weight or machine...
Triceps exercise---JM press or dip or decline skull crushers
Day 2
Quad dominant, two limb
Hip dominant, single limb
Row variety
bench press
biceps humerus exercise ---
Did Day 1 on M and F on week 1, W on week 2
Did day 2 on Wed week 1, M and F week 2.
worked well for me and I made decent gains when I didn't get side-tracked or lazy.
Good luck finding something that works


OP I have used an Upper/Lower split 3 days a week like youve outlined and I think its very good for building strength. I think it lacks when it comes to optimal growth but you will still be able to grow on it if you eat well.