5 of The Most Effective Training Splits for Muscle and Strength

Find the Best Workout Split for You

A workout routine split is a training program that divides the week into  separate workouts, each targeting different muscle groups. This allows you to focus on specific areas of the body on different days, ensuring that each muscle group gets enough attention and recovery time.

First, let’s get this out of the way! There are many effective training splits. Second the most effective splits are those that support your goals and YOU follow through with.

No matter if you are a bodybuilder powerlifter, there are number of proven exercises, sets-and-reps schemes, and training techniques, but ultimately find one that works for your goals, schedule, current fitness level, experience, etc.

When developing your training program, your workout splits will allow you to train most optimally for muscle, strength, and function, while fitting into your life.

Keep in mind the following when starting a new routine:

  • Training experience
  • Goals
  • Your availability
  • Your rest and recovery needs
  • Your weaknesses
  • Your age
best workout splits

5 of the Best Workout Splits

I. The Upper-Lower Training Split Workout Routine

Upper-lower training splits (2 days upper, 2 days lower) work out to 4 workouts in a 7-day training split. Great to transition from a 2 or 3 per week full body workout. The Upper-Lower Training Splits training frequency volume is considered moderate for strength and lean muscle gains.

Example workout structure:

Monday: Upper Body (Push Focus)
Tuesday: Lower Body (Squat Focus)
Wednesday: Off /Active Recovery
Thursday: Upper Body (Pull Focus)
Friday: Lower Body (Hamstring and Glute Focus)
Saturday/Sunday: Off

II. Push/Pull/Legs (PPL) Workout Routine

Push/pull/legs is favorite training split which includes pushing muscles (chest, shoulder, triceps), the pulling muscles the next (back, biceps, forearms, abs), and lower body (quads, hamstrings, glutes, calves’ w/ abs) on the next day. Add in rest days where needed, all while you don’t miss any days. Unlike single body part splits, if you miss a PPL workout, you’ll be able to make it up in 3 days, or simply ad a rest day and stay on the repeating PPL pattern. 6 days a week is a lot, but you will add maximum muscle and strength.

Example workout structure:

Monday: Chest, Shoulders and Triceps
Tuesday: Back, Biceps, Abs and Forearms
Wednesday: Legs
Thursday: Chest, Shoulders and Triceps
Friday: Back, Biceps, Abs and Forearms
Saturday: Legs
Sunday: Rest

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III. Power Hypertrophy Upper Lower (PHUL) Workout Routine

The PHUL workout routine is focused on strength and size in a 4-day program, this routine will allow you to achieve max strength and mass, yet is an adaptable routine based on four main principles. PHUL is great workout program for athletes that want to develop strength via heavy compound movements (squats, bench press, shoulder press, and deadlift, but looking to add some muscle. Of the 4-day workout days, 2 days focus on pure strength training, and 2-days of muscle building (hypertrophy).

Example workout structure:

Monday: Upper Power
Tuesday: Lower Power
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Upper Hypertrophy
Friday: Lower Hypertrophy
Saturday/Sunday: Rest

IV. The PHAT (Power Hypertrophy Adaptive Training) Training Program

The PHAT workout routine is designed to blend powerlifting and bodybuilding routines into a single training program. Although powerlifters and bodybuilders use different reps and weight schemes to reach their respective goals, the PHAT program is a training system balances the demands of both, so you can both sculpt and build strength.

Example workout structure:

Monday: Upper Power
Tuesday: Lower Power
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Back and Shoulder Hypertrophy
Friday: Legs Hypertrophy
Saturday: Chest and Arms Hypertrophy
Sunday: Rest

V. The 5-Day Split Workout Routine

The 5-day split offers many advantages, particularly with intermediate and advanced bodybuilders. 5-day splits provide the chance to have focused strength gains and building mass with less body part fatigue. There are tons of options for moving this routine around to fit your schedule.

Example workout structure:

Monday: Chest
Tuesday: Back
Wednesday: Shoulders
Thursday: Arms
Friday: Legs
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Rest

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