Hitting All Body Parts Three Times Per Week? | The Portal

Hitting All Body Parts Three Times Per Week?

Many decades ago in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, bodybuilders often trained the entire body two to three times per week.  Obviously this involved fewer sets than the one-body part-per-week routines used by most bodybuilders today.  However, in an era where the drug regimens amounted to “a handful of Deca per day” and pre-contest diets were composed of “a can of tuna for lunch”, the athletes managed to achieve a very high level of physique development.  While the trainers of today employ drug regimens, which allow for recovery from 30+ set days per body part, the training they used decades ago (hitting each body part twice per week) was effective then, and is effective now.  Let’s look at a good 3-day per week split.

Splitting It Up

Monday and Friday should include legs, chest, back, deltoids, biceps, triceps and forearms.  This leaves Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday for recovery.  This is an excellent split for off-season bodybuilders seeking to grow.  The four days per week of rest and recovery is plenty adequate from recovering from this routine which, remarkably, if fairly low-volume!


Each body part should be trained with three sets per day.  That is a total of nine sets per week.  While this may seem like a very small number, it is important to remember that whatever body part you are training, it will receive its next dose of stimulation in 48-72 hours.

Exercise Selection

A mass building exercise should be used on Mondays and Fridays.  An isolation movement should be used on Wednesdays.  This means that Mondays and Fridays are also the heavy weight days.  Wednesdays are the days when you use medium weights, and achieve rep ranges of 8 to 15 per set.

Getting Started

Training in this manner can be tough, as the body may require a recovery time period after the first such workout.  You may be used to going “all out” on each body part, when it only receives one day per week of stimulation.  This is a mistake. 

As always, listen to your body.  If you develop knee problems, reconsider the use of squats twice weekly (on leg day).  Perhaps replacing them with leg press would be advantageous.  Always use a variety of exercises and angles to assure that your muscle groups are receiving adequate stimulation.  You might find you love this split, or you might discover it’s just not for you.  Use it to keep things fresh, and see if you like the results! 


Via BuzzFeed