If you ask us, there’s really nothing worse than spending your precious time in the gym and not making gains. Not having the right weekly workout split routine could be what’s holding you back from greatness. That said, what is the best workout split?
Well, truth be told, there isn’t a “best” workout split -- so you don’t need to worry about that. You see, the best workout split will look differently for different individuals and can range from one to six days. Still, one of the more common -- and arguably most effective -- workout splits is the four-day split.
In this post, we’ll dive into this beloved workout program to teach you everything you need to know to maximize gains.
First Things First. What Is The Four-Day Workout Split?
Simply put, the four-day split is a workout plan that involves four weekly training sessions, with each session targeting a specific set of muscles. The goal is to maximize exertion on the target muscle groups while allowing other muscle groups time to recover on days when they aren’t being used.
Are Four-Day Workout Splits Effective?
Absolutely! Four-day workout splits are ideal for a large group of trainees -- especially those who may have extra work and family pressure. Even still, many of the best weight lifters and pro athletes choose to work out four days a week regardless of having the extra time to go more often.
What Are The Benefits Of A Four-Day Workout Split?
There are a ton of great benefits to choosing a four-day workout split. Here are some of them:
Benefit #1: They Offer Plenty Of Time To Rest.
Probably the most significant benefit of this popular workout plan is that it will give you plenty of recovery time throughout the week. One of the greatest determinants of a fitness program’s success is whether it provides the exerciser with adequate rest between sessions.
You see, resting your muscles between workouts is extremely important because exercise causes muscles to break down. To help them repair, you should allow around 48 hours between workouts of each muscle set -- which is really easy to do when following a four-day workout split!
Benefit #2: They Allow You To Train Hard.
Connected to allowing you plenty of time to rest, using a four-day workout split is designed in such a way so that you can come in and work out hard every single session. Being that you know you have more than enough rest days, you’re much more likely to give your workout everything you got. That and you will just have more energy -- which is always a plus.
Benefit #3: They Help To Keep You Focused.
One thing that workout warriors tend to like about four-day splits is that they can keep you focused for your workout. Four days is plenty of time to get a killer workout in and hit all the muscles you need. At the same time, it requires you to go in with a purpose and train as if every rep counts -- because they do!
There are no frivolous movements in this popular workout split, nor is there leftover time to do them anyways. With a four-day workout split, you go in, perform the best and most effective movements, and then get out.
Benefit #4: They Allow Multiple Variations Splits.
Since there are four training days, you have an ample amount of days to divvy up your movements or body parts. This means you can program a four-day workout split specific to hypertrophy, strength, or a combo of both. The possibilities are endless.
What Are The Different Split Routines?
There are many different ways that you can run a four-day split depending on your specific needs and goals. That said, before we tell you which one is best to maximize your gains, let’s first go over a few of these popular variations.
Option One: Full Body Split
Performing full-body workouts four days a week can work, but it can be a little tricky. It’ll require even more attention to recovery and monitoring the load used. This type of workout plan is more likely to benefit the person who is interested in maintaining overall fitness rather than pushing it hard during the session.
Option Two: Upper Lower Split
The Upper Lower split program divides the four workout sessions into two days of upper body training and two days of lower body training. The idea here is to exert one half of your body while the other half rests. A key benefit of this training program is that you’ll be training each muscle group two times a week which has been shown to result in significantly greater muscle growth when compared to just working each muscle group one time per week.
Option Three: Push Pull Split
The Push-Pull workout split is really similar to the Upper Lower workout split and provides many of the same benefits. Again, you will alternate targeting half your body in each session. Push days include exercises where you’re pushing (squat, bench press, etc.) and generally target the muscles in the front of your body. Pull days, on the other hand, include exercises where you’re pulling (bent-over rows, pull-ups, etc.) and generally target the back of the body.
Option Four: Classic Bodybuilder Split
Also known as the Bro Split, the classic bodybuilder four-day split is essentially the meat and potatoes of four-day splits. It involves working a specific isolated muscle group in each workout, generally splitting the sessions into back, chest, legs, and arms. This popular split allows you to focus entirely on a small set of muscles per session and gives you an entire week of recovery for each muscle group.
So -- Which Four-Day Workout Split Is Best?
While there are pros and cons to each split, for those looking to maximize gains, training a muscle twice a week has shown to be sufficiently better than training once a week. So, for those looking to build muscle mass, it’s best to stick with an upper/lower or push/pull split.
A Final Word
Working out in a four-day split is an excellent way to get results. Whether you decide to try an upper-lower, push-pull, full-body, or classic bodybuilder split, the most important thing for amazing results is consistency. Pick a plan that you enjoy and incorporate great workouts that keep you on your toes.
Ready to take your workouts up a notch? Using GEAR 1 from HYGEAR is a great way to build muscle or simply to maintain your level of fitness conveniently at home, or wherever you go. When you connect to the HYGEAR app, you’ll have access to hundreds of workouts led by expert personal trainers. Or, create your own freestyle workouts for whichever four-day split you choose.
GEAR 1 tracks your performance with every workout, and constantly evaluates your upper, lower, and core body strength, to recommend modifications to your workout to build strength where you need it most. That way, you can push yourself a little bit harder every time for results you can see.