Saturday, January 1, 2011

Double Two Day Split Program

What do you guys think is worse? A personal trainer who thinks he/she knows EVERYTHING just because they have a certificate, or a trainer who's aware of how many different approaches there are to training and nutrition, and is still trying to learn? I spend a lot of time networking with other trainers, bodybuilders and so forth and I ask a lot of questions and take a lot of stuff on board. Sometimes I wonder if people are thinking "this guy is a trainer, why is he asking questions? He should know this stuff!" but my attitude is "I know some things, but I'm still trying to learn more". I think that's better than just arrogantly insisting that you know it all already and anything you don't know is not worth learning, wouldn't you agree?

Here's one of my favourite quotes:

"What is wisdom? It has little to do with beliefs. These change year by year from person to person. Only one who does not dare give up beliefs because he has no wisdom will insist that others believe as he does.Cleverness learns something, but wisdom gives up some certainty every day."


So anyway I was thinking a lot about my own training and reading a bit and discussing things with other guys and girls, and I've decided to change my approach a little. As you might know, I like to train a different body part each day in what's known as a "five day split", which means I can do a hell of a lot of exercises on each body part and then give them a full week to recover. I mix it up a bit with some other approaches from time to time but the 5 day split is what I always come back to.

Well, I was thinking about this and how certain body parts seem to be responding & progressing better than others. For example I think my arms and shoulders (front delts at least) are doing pretty well, but I'm a little frustrated that chest and legs aren't really keeping up with them. So why would that be? I apply pretty much the same approach to each body part with most of my programs.

I'll tell you what I decided. In actual fact I am training arms TWICE a week and everything else once a week. If you understand exercise and physiology to some extent you'll be aware that when training chest, the tricep also contributes, and when training back, the biceps contribute. So for example I would really be training triceps on Monday, biceps on Tuesday, and then biceps and triceps together on Friday. It's no wonder my arms are showing better results than any other body part, they get worked twice as often!

So I'm changing my approach and starting out with what I call a "double two day split". How it works is that on day one I am doing all PUSHing exercises such as for chest, triceps, quadriceps and calves, and on day two it's all PULLing exercises such as for back, biceps and hamstrings. There's a rest day after this, and then I start over again but with some different exercises for each day. This way I will be hitting every muscle group twice every week, just like I've always been doing with my arms.

I'm sticking with more or less the same exercises and rep ranges as I utilised in my previous 5 day split program, but just spread out over the whole week instead of one day at a time. I made good progress overall with this program last month, so with this new strategy I'm sure to get even greater results.

Happy new year everyone! Make this a great year by training hard, eating right, and being good to yourself and the people you care about!