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Thread: Upper/Lower split

  1. #1
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    Upper/Lower split

    After doing full-body workouts for almost 2 years now, I think I want to change things up to an upper/lower split. My gains are coming along just fine with full-body, but I want to change to avoid boredom.

    I'm thinking a 4-day split, but I'm only going to go 3 days per week:

    Day 1: Upper – vertical dominant
    BB OH Press – 3 x 5
    Weighted pull-ups/chin-ups - 3 x 5
    DB Bench – 3 x 8
    Dips (weighted) – 3 x 8

    Day 2: Lower – quad dominant
    squat – 3 x 5
    SLDL – 3 x 8
    Power cleans – 5 x 3 ramping
    Core work

    Day 3: Upper – horizontal dominant
    Flat bench – 3 x 5
    Rows – 3 x 5
    DB shoulder presses – 3 x 8
    Chin-ups/pull-ups - 2 x failure

    Day 4: Lower – ham dominant
    Deadlift – 1 x 5
    Front squats – 3 x 5
    Back squats – ramp to a moderate set of 10
    Core work

    See each day has 3 x 5 heavy sets of the "Big 6" - Squat, deadlift, OH press, Flat bench, rows, and pull-ups.

    - The "assistance" work would be lighter weight or higher rep stuff of the non-dominant movement for each day (front squats, DB work, power cleans, SLDL, etc..).

    What do ya'll think about this? I just need a change from the full-body stuff, because it's getting very boring.
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  2. #2
    Go Bears Pete22's Avatar
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    Looks pretty decent, but I would put the front squats in place of back squats on your quad dominant day, and just do back squats on day four. I did an upper/lower split a few years back and I got some decent results. You seem to have all the key lifts in there and planned out well.
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  3. #3
    The Flyfisher rbtrout's Avatar
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    ^^^What Pete said.
    Give chalk a chance.


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  4. #4
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    Thanks. Would you think that I should do lower reps for the back squats on day 4 rather then ramping to a set of 10?? It would seem that back squats are much more important then front squats IMO.
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  5. #5
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    The only thing I dont like it where cleans are. I simply dont think the justification Rip gives for putting cleans near the end of a WO is very good. I really think they should be first. The movement is very complex--- more so than squats and you need to be fresh for that kind of movement. Just my 2 cents.
    Sarvamangalam!

  6. #6
    Go Bears Pete22's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZenMonkey View Post
    The only thing I dont like it where cleans are. I simply dont think the justification Rip gives for putting cleans near the end of a WO is very good. I really think they should be first. The movement is very complex--- more so than squats and you need to be fresh for that kind of movement. Just my 2 cents.
    I think Wendler even recommended doing cleans first if you're going to incorporate them into 5/3/1. It was asked in his Q&A a few weeks ago.
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  7. #7
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Interesting. Ive never thought about programming cleans like 5/3/1. This may be something I have to try sometime. But, I agree about prioritizing them at the beginning of the WO.
    Sarvamangalam!

  8. #8
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    Ya, I remember you said that to me before Zen. Honestly, I haven't really noticed a difference in placing them first or last in my sessions. I usually don't feel fatigued at all while in the gym. It's after I get home and out of the shower that I'm dead.
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  9. #9
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brihead301 View Post
    Ya, I remember you said that to me before Zen. Honestly, I haven't really noticed a difference in placing them first or last in my sessions. I usually don't feel fatigued at all while in the gym. It's after I get home and out of the shower that I'm dead.
    Its not subjective. There are no two ways about it. The clean is a multi stage movement that requires fresh muscles to be performed in such a way that you can keep increasing your poundage. Form break down happens within a few sets of cleans so it will certainly break down after squats and sldls. My recommendation is dont do that.
    Sarvamangalam!

  10. #10
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    I've been stuck at 165 lbs. on cleans. Maybe it's because I warm up with 135 x 3, 145 x 3, 155 x 3, then I shoot for 165 x 3. Maybe I'm just tired after the 3 warm-up sets.
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  11. #11
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Id do 4 sets of 2 reps for warmup (with even incremental increase) and then do 2-3 working sets of 2 reps across(same weight). Treat the reps like singles. Aim for perfect form EVERY time you clean and you will increase.
    Sarvamangalam!

  12. #12
    Squat Heavy, Squat Often Cards's Avatar
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    I like the setup. It's similar to what i'm using now except i've cut mine to a 2 day split using horizantal and vertical planes. I really enjoy it and it makes things more interesting. I've seen some pretty decent gains on it aswell.
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