Designing your training program
Please see the book for sample upper/lower and pull/push/legs splits.
Depending on your weekly schedule, different programs make sense.
How often can you train ?
There have been long discussions on how you should split body parts across different
training days. It will always be a compromise - you want to get enough frequency
for each body part, and get synergies (e.g. training back + biceps, or chest +
triceps). The workouts should be somewhat balanced in terms of time and fatigue.
I like to start either with a short cardio warm-up (biking or rowing), or do an
exercise that gets me warm quickly, like heavy farmer's walks.
Then I do heavy exercises (e.g. Romanian Deadlifts), followed by lighter
exercises for smaller muscle groups.
When to train ?
When you consistently have time to train !
Ideally, you should train each muscle group often enough - about twice per week -
but leave enough time for recovery.
During the weekend you can probably get better recovery, allowing longer and
- Early morning - I would not stress the spine with heavy exercises or ab
crunches first thing in the morning. Pushups, Chin-ups etc. are no problem,
and can be a good complement to weight training.
- Ride the bike to school or work.
- During the day, you will probably be stuck at school or work. Maybe you
can move a bit during breaks.
- Late afternoon / early morning - according to scientists this is the best time
- Late evening - not ideal to train with a full stomach, and training noise
may not be popular with your neighbors.
1x per week
Are you serious about training ? Then you should try to train more often.
If this is really all you can make time for, do a full body workout, and if possible
do some calisthenics each morning.
2x per week
Better, but not ideal. Again, consider full body workouts.
3x per week
- Saturday full body training
- Monday upper body training
- Wednesday lower body training
- Thursday + Friday P.E. at school
4x per week
- Sunday upper body
- Monday lower body
- Wednesday upper body
- Thursday or Friday lower body
5x per week
A combination of upper/lower + pull/push/legs works well. Example:
- Saturday upper body
- Sunday lower body
- Tuesday back (pull)
- Wednesday chest (push)
- Thursday lower body (legs)
6x per week
Probably too much. Example: 2 x pull/push/legs
7x per week
Usually not a good idea - "on the seventh day you shall rest."
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