From Full-Body to PPL: Selecting the Best Workout Split for Serious Gains

Usually, whenever someone joins the gym, they do a full-body workout. However, the order of exercise does not matter for a regular gym goer. But when someone starts taking bodybuilding seriously, it does matter a lot. Carefully analyzing different workout splits is necessary. Moreover, choose a workout split that fits your goal.

Don’t stress anymore, as today we will discuss in detail the different workout splits to choose from.

1. Different Workout Splits

what muscle groups to workout together?
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 There are usually three types of workout splits to choose from. They are divided based on body parts trained on a particular day. Let’s analyze them quickly.

1.1 Full-body Split

The most basic kind of split is a Full-body split. Wherever someone starts going to the gym, the trainers start training them with this split. In this split an individual trains every body part on a given day. Usually, the first exercise is that of the chest followed by the shoulders. Then arms are done followed by legs and then finally core. 

Start by doing a flat dumbbell press. Follow it with pull-downs and then do a bicep curl. After that do triceps extensions and then finally squats.

Also, if a person can exercise only a few days a week, it’s the best split. One can train on every alternate day. This way the body gets enough time to recover and be ready for another one. 

1.2 The Bro Split

This is the first real split that a person does after hitting the gym. In this split, usually, a day is dedicated to each body part training. This split is usually done so that a person gets accompanied to weight training. It’s best for building strength and a base for an amazing physique. 

Usually, the chest is trained on Monday, and back on Tuesday. They are followed by Shoulders trained on Wednesday. Then it’s advised to take a rest day on Thursday. After that arms are trained on Friday followed by legs on Saturday. Then Sunday is a rest day. 

You can play with this split by doing legs at the start of the week or in the middle. But if done the above-mentioned way, it’s optimal for muscle and strength building. However, some research shows that bro-split is not the most scientific way to train. But in the end, it depends on the effort an individual puts into training that reaps the most benefit.

1.3 The PPL Split 

PPL is the acronym for “Push, Pull, Legs”. This split has been accepted by many lifters in recent years. It is also been done by many professional bodybuilders around the world. It is named so that all the exercises done on a particular day are either “pushed away” from the body or “pulled towards” the body. 

Generally, on push day, the chest, shoulder, and triceps are trained together. On pull day, the back and biceps are trained together. And finally, the legs are trained on Wednesday. A rest day is taken on Thursday. Then push is performed again on Friday and pull on Saturday. Sunday is always a rest day. You can train on Thursday too. That way legs are trained two times in a single week.

This split involves working every muscle twice a week. According to research, training every muscle group twice a week is best for muscle building.

2. Are There Other Splits to Work on?

woman lifting barbel
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There are a couple of other splits that could be done for muscle building. They are done less by regular gym goers and more by professional bodybuilders and strength athletes.

2.1 The Chest and Back on the Same Day

Training chest and back on the same day is safer than you think. Generally, they are done so that you could train them twice in one week.

Chest and back are trained on Monday. They are followed by training shoulder, triceps, and biceps on Tuesday. Then the legs are done on Wednesday and then repeat. Sunday is a rest day.

2.2 Upper and Lower Body Split

This is the most efficient split. In this you train the upper body on one day and the lower body on the other alternatively. On upper body day, you train your back, biceps, chest, triceps, and shoulders. On lower body days you train quads, hamstrings, and calves. Generally, you take a break after an upper and a lower day. 

3. Diet and Training Go Hand-In-Hand

what muscle groups to workout together?
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Even if your workout is intense but your diet isn’t well-balanced, progress will always slow down. Even the most optimal science-based split can be outdone by consistently doing a bro split. There’s no right or wrong split. You can’t get muscular until you eat 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. So, stop looking for an ideal image that seems to be perfect and start being consistent and eating consistently.

4. Final Words

By carefully analyzing a simple conclusion can be made, “Train according to your schedule”. If your schedule allows you to incorporate 6 training days a week, go for bro split or PPL.

If your busy schedule allows you to train 4 days a week, then go for upper body and lower body split. Until you become a professional bodybuilder, you do not need to look at the science behind everything. However, to answer the burning question, yes, the PPL and the chest and back routine are the most popular ones.

I’m a Physics graduate with a keen interest towards fitness. I have a two year experience in the gym. Before that I used to jog and lost about 10 kgs just by optimising my diet. I have done my fare share of research on fitness and muscle building.

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