In a previous article, I suggested a 5-day workout routine, which is mainly focused on training each body-part separately every day. For example: Monday-Chest, Tuesday-Arms, Wednesday-Shoulders, Thursday-Back, Friday-Legs and Weekend-Rest. Although I believe that the ideal workout is the one that you devoted a single workout to a single body-part, most of us do not have the available time to execute such an overloaded weekly training schedule.
So, what is the best alternative? Your goal still remains to train each body-part at least once a week. In order to achieve that without having to go to the gym every day, you must combine training a major body-part along with a minor at the same day. Here is a typical example of a 3-day workout routine:
1) Bench Press 4 sets x 12,10,8,6
2) Incline Bench Press 3 sets x 12,10,8
3) Cable Crossover 3 sets x 12,10,8
4) Peck-Dec (Butterfly) or Dumbbell flies 3 sets x 12,10,8
1) Barbell or Cable Curl 3 sets x 12,10,8
2) Alternate Hammer Curl 3 sets x 12,10,8
3) Concentration Curls or Preacher Curls (machine) 3 sets x 12,10,8
1) V-Bar Pull-Down 4 sets x 12,10,8,6
2) Wide Grip Pull-Down (machine or cable) 3 sets x 12,10,8
3) Bent-Over Barbell Row 3 sets x 12,10,8
4) One Arm Dumbbell Row (leaning on a bench) 3 sets x 12,10,8
1) Cable Extension (kneeling or standing) 3 sets x 12,10,8
2) Lying Close Grip Barbell Extension (Forehead) 3 sets x 12,10,8
3) One Arm Dumbbell Extension 3 sets x 12,10,8
1) Leg Extensions (machine) 4 sets x 12,10,8,8
2) Squats Barbell or Machine 4 sets x 12,10,8,8
3) Dumbbell Lunges 3 sets x 12,10,10
4) Leg Curls (Lying-machine) 3 sets x 12,10,10
1) Barbell or Dumbbell Shoulder Press 4 sets x 12,10,8,8
2) Arnold Dumbbell Press 3 sets x 12,10,8
3) Dumbbell Raise (Front or side) 3 sets x 12,10,8
4) Cable Chin Rows (Standing) 3 sets x 12,10,8
Always train the major body-part first: Chest, Back, Legs and continue with the minors: Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders (Shoulders are considered as a medium size body-part, so whenever you have the chance train them separately). You can shuffle the exercises of each body part the way you like, but keep in mind that main exercises like bench press for chest, squat for legs or shoulder presses should be executed first.
If you are currently on a mass or volume workout routine, then lift maximum weight and decrease your reps. I call this training schedule "3-day workout routine". However, if you have some extra time you can perform it four or even five times a week. Just keep in mind to rotate the workouts. For example, if you add training session on Thursday, then work on your legs and shoulders on Thursday and on Friday train your chest and biceps. Never break the sequence of the above-mentioned workout routine so that all body-parts are being trained the same.
Whether you are on the 3-day or the 5-day workout routine , remember that muscle build is a result of three different factors: Training, nutrition and resting. Each one of these factors is equally important.
Keep those muscles pumping!