If you missed the previous instalment of this series then I have it linked here, but here is number two in the series and will be all about adding the meat and potatoes if you will to your training split.
So if you followed the rough idea of the last article then you should have a skeleton of a training split. Your focuses and how you will achieve them, your different blocks and the number of days you train per week. These will be essential in taking this next step. But what is this next step? Well it’s all about exercises- where and how to use them.
In a traditional “bro split” each day is centred around training a specific body part with the exercises chosen aimed at growing said body part. In a slightly more clever split, body parts that supplement each other are chosen such as chest and triceps. For many people this is enough and does do the job, if you think this applies to you then look no further- but if you are an athlete or partake in sports then I would recommend this… Instead of basing training around a body part, focus it on a lift. So swap out chest and triceps for bench press or shoulders for an overhead press. Use the accessory lifts to supplement the main compound lift or focus. As you get better at that specific compound lift that aspect of your game will get better- for example if one of those compounds is a power clean then you will become more explosive. This is a great way to structure your training not only on a daily basis but also linking back to those blocks mentions in part one.
Remember if you get confused by any of this then find me via email or Instagram .
Now you have the focus of the days of your training, what exercises should you pick to achieve those focuses? Much like the above paragraph if you were in the initial category of following the “slightly more clever split” then listen in. Because your end game isn’t sport, you can afford to chose exercises that will build muscle in the most muscles if that makes sense. So for example if you train back and biceps then you want exercises that train the whole set of muscles (so ones that target your traps, rhomboids, lats, teres major/minor… you get the picture). But if you are someone who placed themselves in the athlete or sportsman category things get a little more complex. Thinking back to part one, we thought up goals for your training, right? The exercises you chose will be one of the ways you can achieve those goals. So if lets say one of those goals was to have a stronger upper body then choose exercises that will supplement the bench press or shoulder press. I will admit this does require a wide knowledge of the exercises on offer so if you need any help then just contact me.
Once you have chosen your exercises you need to decide the number of sets and number of reps that you do for each exercise. This is quite simple- I like to do a five sets by five reps for any compound exercises and a four by eight/ten for any isolation/accessory lifts. This keeps the compound as the centre focus and allows you to lift the most weight. A five by five is a good mix of your max strength and hypertrophy needed to supplement that strength. While the four by eight/ten is aimed at pure hypertrophy to grow muscle. Any confusion then this handy diagram should help.
Then you need to consider the rest times you will take during your workouts. This, much like the previous point, is fairly simple. Any compound lifts you do should have a two minute rest before. This will assist the five by five system employed in the above paragraph and diagram. While any accessory lifts you do should have a one and a half minute rest- assisting the hypertrophy.
Assuming you didn’t get confused you should end up with something similar to this. I would advise writing this down somewhere as it makes it easier to track, update on any progress and change anything. If you are still confused then talk to me as I would love to help.