If you take a good look around your gym while your gym mates are exercising, you’ll realize that not very many of them are doing full body workouts. You are probably just like them, training most of your time on split routines of some sort to gain weight and build muscle. The fact is that most weight lifters are doing just that. Using split routines, however, causes two problems which tend to hold body builders back from achieving their goals of massive muscle gain and loss of fat.
Firstly, full body weight lifting exercises are really the most effective way to build muscle and gain weight fast. If you practice a full body workout routine, you will be assured of building muscle faster.
Secondly, those who continue to use split routines exclusively, thinking that it will prevent them from overtraining, end up working hard and making minimal progress and wondering why they cannot build muscle and gain weight fast, as they had expected.
The cold hard fact is that those who are practicing split routines do not really know how to gain weight and build muscle fast. They are doing much too much work on each body part. Because they have split their routines, their multiple workouts cause them to train as long as they normally would, but on fewer parts of the body. An example would be instead of three sets of a full body routine on the bench press, they spend the same time and energy on performing fifteen set training the chest.
When practicing split routines, one of the unintended problems encountered is overlap. Split routines do not do well at eliminating overlap. The following example is typical of the overlaps seen in most split routines seen in weightlifting magazines.
* Monday – Chest and Shoulders
* Tuesday – Legs
* Thursday – Arms (Biceps, Triceps and Forearms)
* Friday – Back
On the face of it, it looks OK, but it isn’t. Why not train arms and back on consecutive days? When you train your back, you are also training your biceps with some considerable challenge. This can cause you to overtrain your biceps. Also, by training the back the day after the arms, the important muscles in your back will be reduced in their training. Your biceps are limiting factors in training your back, and you will have just trained the biceps on the preceding day.
If you can understand and accept the concepts revealed above, you can develop a better routine for building your muscles. One extremely popular weight training split routine is to plan a workout for five days each week, with no training on the weekends. The following example defines the routine.
* Monday – Chest
* Tuesday – Legs
* Wednesday – Arms
* Thursday – Back
* Friday – Shoulders
As you can readily see, this routine also hit the biceps two times in a row. The shoulders as well were also trained three times: once on chest day, once on back day, and again on shoulder day. Even more interesting is that back and shoulder day were, no pun intended, back to back. It’s not possible to rearrange this split to offer and significant improvement.
Many body parts overlap. It’s important that you take the time to think seriously about how you are going to design a split routine. It’s not as simple as identifying your body parts and assigning them to a standard split. Check out the following tips.
* Back exercises usually hit the biceps hard, and also affect the shoulders.
* Chest exercises will hit triceps hard, and also affect the shoulders.
* Leg and back exercises can overlap. Exercises like squats, stiff-legged dead lifts, and regular deadlifts work the lower back very hard.
When you design a split routine for yourself to gain weight and build muscle, remember these weightlifting tips. Make sure that you give each part of your body time to rest, so you won’t be overtraining.
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