- 10-11-2011, 06:22 PM
Hey everyone just tryin to get some opinions. I currently workout 4 days a week, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday are the days I have time to get to the gym. Anyone have any recommendations as far as a workout split to maximize my time at the gym? I've been trying different things to see what works best and I know you guys will have some great ideas as far as which body parts to work together on which days. Any help is greatly appreciated!
- 10-12-2011, 12:11 PM
what are you specific goals? bodybuilding, powerlifting, olympic lifting, just being fit (and what is your definition of fit), just looking better, just feeling better???
what is your training experience in that how long have you lifted consistently?
- 10-12-2011, 12:59 PM
my specific goals are to look better and defined. Ive been heavy for most of my life, I went from 270 lbs down to 180 lbs to where I'm at now which is 195lbs, so now I'm looking to finish what I started and look and feel even better. I've been training for about 2 years, with the last year much more consistent. I just want to make sure that the time I spend at the gym is doing what will give me the best results. Ive been reading alot online but there are so many opinions on what works and what doesnt that I figured asking here would give me honest opinions based on what people have tried before. Thanks for your response!
10-12-2011, 10:40 PM
that sounds very bodybuilding to me. now that doesnt mean you want to get to be a 300lbs IFBB pro unless you want to spend the next 10 years training for that...... im guessing not.
but IMO you can take a lesson from them. you want to see the muscle so muscle size is important. so stick mostly between 5-12 reps. thats not to say once and a while you cant go 3-5 reps, or even some crazy 15-20 rep stuff. just focus more on that 5-12.
for sets that depends on how much frequency you want. if you only plan on hitting a muscle once a week definitely more sets per workout. if you do twice a week then make the 2 workouts about the same total sets (or maybe up to 1.2 times as much) as if they were done once a week. for example, if you can 10 sets for a lift if you do it only once a week and you decided to do twice a week instead i would not do more than 6 sets in each workout. i may do 3-5 sets and go heavier each time, but that is what i prefer and size is not a goal for me.
you just need to keep in mind total volume. total for the body and total for the body part. it is my opinion that there are stages to recovery and they go in this order and there is not much overlap. first, energy system recovery. in other words eat after the workout. second, nervous system recovery, or becoming more efficient. think of it like newb gains. lifting is a skill and learning that skill at first seems like the weights go up quick. this is what i think happens at least. and finally you get actual muscle growth.
that last thing is why i am more of a fan of higher volume workouts for muscle size. and seeing as how intensity and volume is inversely related with lifting you will not lift as heavy as if you were going for strength. which requires more intensity.
to me how much volume you do per workout is how much you can handle at a set small rep range. for example if you are aiming for 5-8 reps when you fall below that then that muscle is done. most would just go to a different lift and start all over with that idea, but to me it depends on the lift and the experience of the lifter. when looking at the lift for example lets say you are doing flies and you do them till you fall short of your rep range. you can do bench then and involve more muscles and even continue to push your chest with more volume. but is that volume needed for you? will that extra volume just wear you out without adding more stimulus for growth?
i have always liked an article i once read from dr squat. if you go over to his web site and look up finding the ideal split he writes about how to find out what rep/set range will work best for a body part and recommended recovery days. use it as a guideline and not as a bible as it can get tricky. it at least can tell if you some body parts need more frequency then others.
most body parts will get hit twice a week no matter how hard you try not to. like doing squats will work your back as well as your legs. so keep that in mind when setting up your back workout. bench hits the shoulders and triceps a lot so keep that in mind when doing an arm only workout. rowing can hammer the biceps hard especially with pullups and lat pulldowns. and as you may find from that dr squat workout that some body parts for you will love higher frequency and higher volume.
so try heading over to that article and find out what it says for each body part. please list for each part the set/rep scheme and recommended days off. like for quads it might say 10 sets of 15-20 reps with 3-5 days off. not sure if thats an option but just throwing it out there. from there we can customize a plan for your current body.
10-26-2011, 11:14 AM
Thank you so much for your response! I'm checking out his website so I'll let you know what I find out. And as far as workouts go, given my size and the fact that I'm looking to put on more muscle, is it better to cut down first to see where I'm at and then bulk for size? Or is it better to bulk to gain more muscle then cut down later for some defenition? Everyone I've talked to seems to have a different opinion on this. My issue is I dont want to wind up looking small so I'm unsure what would work best.
10-26-2011, 03:55 PM
gaining muscle is a very slow progress as it is very metabolically expensive, in other words you need to eat a lot to gain and maintain muscle. so you can bulk for say 3-6 months and spend 1-3 months getting super lean and losing a bit of that muscle, not much but some. then rinse and repeat. so if you really want to get big this process will happen several times so whichever one you start with makes no difference in the long run.
now you want to look better and be defined as your goal. you need to decide what you think looking good is. is it seeing your tiny muscles or seeing your huge muscles. if its seeing your huge muscles then bulk first. if its seeing your tiny muscles then shed fat first. IMO there will come a point after you have put in a good amount of muscle, you are doing quality conditioning work, you are eating just enough food you can add muscle with minimal fat so then when you try and shed fat it will take 3-6 weeks to look ripped. but it might take years to get big enough for what you want. who knows, maybe you will get bigger and find that is what you like. and being bodybuilder lean is not what you want. then you can enjoy a much easier time of eating, lifting heavy, being strong as hell and having the side effect of looking great.
now those are just my opinions. just dont put the cart before the horse and learn that this is a marathon and not a sprint. its a long term thing.
you can call me "ozzie" for short.
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