Three Day Split Routine – Push-Pull-Legs


November 2016

The Three Day Split routine is one of the most basic, yet remains one of the most constructive of all routines; maybe that's why it's so popular. It's ideal for trainers who are busy, but still want to make great gains i the gym by training three times a week for under an hour a session. Of course, cardiovascular exercise is still encouraged and should be in addition to weights. And, to make gains, you'll need to follow a good diet (read our nutrition articles here).

Below is a typical Push-Pull-Legs, three sessions a week routine using equipment that's found in most gyms. Number of reps are there as a guide, but always train at a hard pace and to failure; at the end of each session you should be burned out!

Day 1 Push: Chest + Triceps + Delts

5 mins bike or cross trainer to warm up
Incline dumbbell press – 1 x warm up; 3 sets 10-12 reps
Dumbbell flyes – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Pec-dec – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Cable cross-overs – 3 sets of 10-12 reps rapidly
Dumbbell side lateral raises – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Seated shoulder press (front neck) – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Seated bent-over laterals (rear delts) – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Skull-crushers – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Tricep push-downs – 4 sets 10-12 reps
Dips (assisted, if necessary) – 2-3 sets to failure

Day 2 Pull: Back + Traps + Biceps

5 mins bike or cross trainer to warm up
Lat pull-downs (front neck) – 1 x warm up; 3 sets 10-12 reps
Low-pulley rows – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Deadlifts – 3 sets 8-10 reps
Straight-arm pull-downs – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Shrugs – 4 sets 8-10 reps
Upright rows – 3 sets 8-10 reps
Stranding EZ curls – 4 sets 10-12 reps
Preacher curls – 3 sets 10-12 reps; 1 set 25 reps
Hammer curls – 2 sets 8-10 reps each arm

Day 3 – Legs + Abs

5 mins bike or cross trainer to warm up
Leg extensions – 1 x warm up; 3 sets 10-12 reps
Squats – 4 sets 8-12 reps
Leg press – 3 sets 10-12 reps
Lunges – 2 sets of 20 steps (10 each leg)
Lying leg curls – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
Stiff-legged deadlifts – 3 sets of 8-10 reps
Calf raises – 4 heavy sets of 8 reps
Seated calf raises – 4 sets of 12-15 reps
Sit-up crunches – 3 sets to failure

Don't forget to drink plenty of water throughout each session and follow each session with a protein and carb drink and a good meal when you get home.