How to Organize an Upper/Lower Split

The Basics

I’ve written about how to organize a full-body split before so now I’d like to share how you can organize an upper/lower split. This is just a blueprint/skeleton for you as you can change things up any way you like.

I think an upper/lower split is useful if you’re training 3-4x per week. I will write out a sample 4 day split that can be done in 3 or 4 days per week. I will explain how you can turn a 4 day split into a 3 day split later on.

 

The Blueprint

Upper A – 

Push Exercise 1 – main move – 3-4 sets x 8-12 reps
Push Exercise 2 – moderate to heavy move – 3-4 sets x 10-12 reps
Pull Exercise 1 – main pull move – 3-4 sets x 8-12 reps
Pull Exercise 2 – moderate to heavy move – 3-4 sets x 10-12 reps
Accessory 1 – 3-4 sets x 10-12 reps
Accessory 2 – 3-4 sets x 10-12 reps
Core Exercise – Plank Variation

Lower A – 

Main Exercise – 12, 8, 6 ,4 ,2 ; 70% of top set x 5-6 reps x 3 sets
Main Accessory – 3-4 sets x 10-12 reps
Single-leg Work – 2-3 sets x 12-15 reps
Core Work
Conditioning Work

*From these two templates, I can make an Upper B and a Lower B session. I will now show you an actual, workable template.

 

The Program

Upper A (Horizontal Push/Pull)

BB Incline Bench – 4 sets x 8-10 reps
DB Flat Bench – 3 x 10-12
BB Rows – 4 x 8-10
DB Chest-Supported Rows – 3 x 10-12
DB Incline Flyes – 4 x 10-12
DB Incline Curls – 4 x 10-12
Side Planks – 2 x 30s per side

 

Lower A (Squat Day)

Squat – 12, 8, 6, 4, 2; 70% of top set x 5-6 reps x 3 sets
Romanian Deadlift – 4 x 10-12
Reverse Lunges – 3 x 15
Ab Wheel Rollouts – 3 x 10-12
Sled Drags – 3 sets x set distance

 

Upper B (Vertical Push/Pull)

BB Shoulder Press – 4 x 8-10
DB Seated Press – 3 x 10-12
Weighted Chinups – 4 x 8-10
Lat Pulldown – 3 x 10-12
DB Lateral Raises – 4 x 12-15
Rear Delt Flyes – 4 x 12-15
Hanging Leg Raises – 3 x 12-15

 

Lower B (Deadlift Day)

Deadlift – 12, 8, 6, 4, 2; 70% of top set x 5-6 reps x 3 sets
Front Squat – 4 sets x 8 reps
One-Leg Stiff-Legged Deadlift – 3 sets x 12-15 reps
Farmers Carry – 3 sets x distance
Hill Sprints – 3 sets

 

The Conclusion

There you have it. That is a four day split that I’ve used in the past. You can easily substitute exercises within the same movement patterns. You can do flat bench instead of incline. You can do a trap bar deadlift instead of straight bar deadlifts. You can do cable flyes instead of DB flyes, etc.

If you train 4 days a week, you can simply run upper/lower/upper/lower. If you want to train 3 days a week, you can do upper/lower/upper on one week and do lower/upper/lower on the next week. This is just a blueprint for you to work with. This doesn’t even go into dropsets, supersets, certain squat programs and all that other good stuff. We’ll save that for another day.

I’ve now equipped you with how to organize a full-body session and an upper/lower split. Let me know what else you’d like me to share with y’all! As always, if you have any questions about any of this, feel free to hit me up at theolim7@gmail.com. I’ll be happy to answer any questions.

 

 

 

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