So you've decided you want to start training now huh?
You're currently looking at or have done - at online pre-made workout programmes to follow because the 'pros' posted them and are telling you how jacked up you're going to get if you download them and use them.
Somewhere along the line of using these pre-made plans you've reached a point to realise that you're not understanding what it is you're actually doing, the youtube tutorial doesn't match up with what the 'pro' workout says, you're skipping exercises because they're hard, someone said something - that has now influenced you to read this!
Choosing a split is for life (not really but you get what I mean) - the split you'll choose will be with you for a period of time you keep hitting your objectives with, so you need to make sure it is SMART! We've all come across this term, but if you haven't; Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time.
What splits are there?
So firstly, what the hell are "splits"right? Simple. It's simply the approach of training your body parts by splitting them apart during the the period of the week you train. e.g - the classic 'international Monday chest day' and triceps, then back and biceps followed by legs. This is a usual approach to how people get started as it's the most logical and simplistic way to follow a training programme; but this post is about how to choose your split, not - here it is good bye.
To walk you through a few, and generally ones that are used the most, also used by us here at Power Progression.
Push | Pull | Legs
push - chest, shoulders, triceps.
pull - back, rear deltoids, biceps
legs - quads, hamstrings, calves
Push Pull Legs (PPL) is a 3 day training split with 1 rest day in-between. So, a training frequency of 6 days a week (if you consider a whole week) and efficiently hitting each muscle group twice. A workout that normally, caters to those with time at hand, hitting the gym 6 days a week is a task, especially, if you have major responsibilities, excluding your work. Although the volume of training is efficient and effective, a downside could just simply not having the time.
upper - chest, back, arms, shoulders
lower - legs (quads, hamstrings, claves)
Upper/Lower is a very simple 1 day working upper and 1 day working lower. A well rounded approach which caters to individuals whose time isn't flexible but want to ensure they get their workouts done and dusted. Because worst case scenario, you can only train twice in a particular period of time, boom, Upper/Lower, weeks work smashed. (essentially we want to aim to hit muscle groups twice a week but something is always better than nothing!!)
Smashing your whole body up every session. Simples. Chest, back, shoulders, arms, legs, brain.
Brilliant for frequency, what better feeling than walking out of a gym knowing you've covered everything in one session? Good for people who want to to cover everything in one session, and time constraint. Hitting volume is hard as you're covering so much, so frequency matters.
When you've figured out what kind of split you want to choose, consideration needs to be taken into account on the amount of volume you're actually accumulating in your sessions. Taking into account that you can train smaller muscle groups more often than larger ones due to recovery, you should split up your volume with good effect so that you're not risking development.
You won't know how great your split is until you've tried it of course right? Like with anything, testing it for efficiency is important. You should take the first week as a beta test, log and analyse how you feel, have you recovered well? Are you completing everything? Also, are you actually hitting all your muscle groups with good effect?
How do I now choose?
What split is for you right? Take a notepad, or open up notes on your phone or something and start jotting down information about your schedules. How many days can you dedicate to training? Do you need to focus more on specific parts rather than the concept of training
everything? What's you work life like, social, personal, goals? There's a lot you need to consider when picking a split. Fitness is a lifestyle, not a turn on turn off.
When you have picked a split, you'll need to work at it and gain consistency with it, changing things too quickly could be detrimental to long term process, practicing it for too long without adjustments could also result in stagnant periods of time; this may build frustration and have you running back to a downloadable free PDF 'ripped in 3' guide.
At Power Progression, we don't just give you a workout split - we tailor it for you, we take into consideration all factors of your lifestyle and ensure it fits along with it. As well as this, we also are aware of periodic changes and make these adjustments too! Forever evolving and developing your training.
Shout us out for that help you need.