Thursday, 20 January 2011

My Current Routine Continued

I decided to try a 5 day split which went like.

Monday: Chest
Tuesday: Back
Wednesday: Legs
Thursday: Shoulders
Friday: Arms

The first few weeks this was great I had enough energy to complete my workout without any problems. I also noticed I broke through a Plateau for my bench and dead lift. I was one of those guys who hated working out legs, because the first time I did a leg workout I had trouble walking for a whole week. I laugh about that now. I did a 5 day split for around a year and saw some great gains. While looking through forums I came across a few articles which I have posted below which made me think again about doing a 5 day split. The first is an article by Casey Butt called 

The Rules of Productive Weight Training
for The Drug-Free Trainee

It is a long read but definitely worth it in my opinion. The thing that struck me the most in this article was.

Rule #4: Don't Train More Often Than Three Days Per Week (Four Under Certain Circumstances) If You're Trying to Build Maximum Muscle Mass and Strength

This rule often comes as a big shock for people so I'm going to try and be as clear as possible. I am not saying that no one, at no time, should ever train more than three or maybe four times per week. What I am saying is that to build maximum muscle mass that's all that's needed and is, by far, the best approach for most genetically typical drug-free trainees trying to get bigger and stronger.
"But Jay Cutler trains six times", I can hear you saying - go back and read Rule #1 again. Unless you are very genetically gifted, you do not have the hormone levels or joint structures to train that often and make maximum progress in size and strength. It's true that some advanced drug-free athletes can train 5-6 times per week, and those types of routines can have their place, but they are only for very specific purposes (such as contest preparation or for the sake of variety) and are generally NOT appropriate for typical drug-free trainees trying to increase their basic muscle mass. Personally, as I look back on my bodybuilding "career", I realize that the times I made my best mass gains were when I was working out no more than three times per week most of the time. Generally, drug-free strength athletes make the fastest gains when they spend more days out of the gym than in. Don't believe me? Hey, it's your life, do what you want - but if you don't listen to this you'll regret it. I've been there.

At first I was sceptical because I had heard all over forums and from people that 5 day splits were the best. I had also made good gains from doing a 5 day split. I had noticed a few problems with my split sometimes I was still sore from the day before and couldn't lift as much as I wanted. I knew I wasn't the most genetically gifted person. I had always kept this article in mind. The other article I came across was by Bill Starr called "Bigger Arms". I have posted the link below

Bigger Arms by Bill Starr

This was a 3 day full body workout split. As I was getting very busy with school going to the gym 5 days a week became very hard so I had decided I would try this 3 day split.

My routine looked like this


full squats, 5 x 5
clean-grip high pulls, 5 x 5
bench presses, 3 x 5, 3 x 3, 1 X 8
chins, 4 x max
incline dumbbell bench presses, 2 x 20.

incline bench presses, 5 x 5, 1 x 8
light squats, 5 x 4
Bent Over Rows, 4 x 8 ( Some days switch to Deadlift)
straight-arm pullovers, 2 x 20
weighted dips, 4 x 8.


full squats, 3 x 5, 2 x 3, 1 X 8
flat benches, 4 x 8
shrugs, 5 x 5
straight-arm pullovers, 2 x 20
chins, 4 x Max
Dips 3 x Max

Although this routine doesn't look like much it takes a lot of work. Something I noticed from doing this routine was I had a lot more energy than from the 5 day split. I also got a full day of recovery after each workout throughout the weekdays which gave me a lot more free time.
A few weeks into this routine my lifts were going up every single week especially my squat which was awesome. I was pretty amazed I had made a lot of progress in just a month from doing this routine I could tell from looking in the mirror I had grown a lot more than I did from doing a 5 day split. I guess doing a 5 day split never gave my body the time needed to fully grow. I'm currently still doing a 3 day split and will continue for a while. 


  1. good luck bro...

  2. Nice I wanted to get hold of that Bill Starr workout, Cheers!
    I click/ follow back

  3. Good volume and lifts. Keep up the good work.

  4. take a multi and life heavy!

  5. Will have to try the 3 day routine


  6. good stuff broham!

    your friend,

  7. I did legs today :( fucking killed me

  8. I will be switching to a 3 day week routine next week. My current situation with my 2 jobs and school is making it hard to push the 5 day split. Plus my strength has plateaued a little.

  9. Good to hear. I was always afraid that I was falling behind doing a 3 day full body split than the more traditional 5 day split, but after these articles and others like them I'm convinced I'm either better off or at the same level.

  10. Starting a Max OT cycle. Will see how that goes in a few months. Personally dig 5 days a week, awesome hitting the gym every school day.
    Quid Pro Quo Fo Sho

  11. Hmm...interesting stuff...gotta re-evaluate things now. Thanks brah

  12. Mine looks very similar, just with the days shifted around a bit. Good work

  13. there sure are a ton of weightlifting blogs!!

  14. Thats my split but different order

  15. squats are the way of the future.

  16. I'd recommend throwing in some front squats if you really want to see an improvement not only in your back squats but also in your quads.

    Also, maybe consider doubling up muscle groups and separating into three days: Push, Pull, and Legs

    You only need so much rest between major muscle groups (72 hours is plenty) before you can hit them again.

    This setup has always worked for me.

    I like your blog, I'll be following.

  17. good routine bro.