Whole Body Workout Smartly – part II

13-08-2020 | 
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As we promised with the continuation of Whole Body Workout Smartly – part I article, and now here we are with part II.

A little recap of the first article: the point was, that when it comes to full-body workouts, you shouldn't do more than 1 exercise per muscle group and that you shouldn't confuse muscle protein synthesis with the time of regeneration. At the end of the article, we promised we'll continue with how to select the exercises for a full-body workout – smartly.

The biggest drawback of full-body training

In the old times, when bro split was king, we always advised training an underdeveloped muscle group twice a week. Back then, we did not have the scientific literature we have today, and the fact that muscle protein synthesis (MPS) generated by resistance training is gone in 24-48 hours was not clear. However, we already knew and felt that more frequent workouts can lead to greater improvements in muscle growth.

Science has proved us right, with the display of 24-48 hour "anabolic window", and it feels great.

The benefit of a whole-body workout is well-known by today: it stimulates every muscle more than once a week, and this increase in frequency leads to faster muscle growth. It's logical: your muscles don't need a one-week recovery.

But. If you've been doing split workouts all your life, you'll feel that doing just one exercise per muscle group is just not enough. And you're absolutely right.

Why? Because a muscle consists of more than just one "part" and has more than one function. Each muscle part can be stimulated, punctuated.

For instance, the triceps consists of 3 parts (heads). So what happens if you only perform just one triceps exercise, like kickbacks for example? You only stimulate the long head*, while the medial and the lateral head don't receive the level of stimulus they deserve.

Therefore, if you only do one exercise per bodypart in your full-body workout, this may lead to muscle imbalances over time.

This is why you gotta do this smartly.

In contrast to a split workout, it's not a smart tactic to perform the same exercises in a full-body workout plan. Sticking with triceps, and see how does a typical split workout look like:

  • Monday:
  • pushdown
  • cable overhead triceps extension
  • kickbacks

A poorly planned full-body looks like this (we are still only looking at the triceps training):

  • Monday: pushdown
  • Wednesday: pushdown
  • Friday: pushdown

We usually do a workout plan for at least three months. Have you noticed the problem?

Yes, you have: if you perform your whole-body workouts like this, you'll only stimulate each head of your triceps every 3 months, instead of every week. You'll miss the whole purpose of a whole body workout.

The solution: train every part of each muscle every week with various exercises.

So, it's still one exercise per muscle, but three different exercises during the week instead of one. This looks like this in practice:

  • Monday: pushdown
  • Wednesday: kickbacks
  • Friday: cable overhead triceps extension

What a difference!

With this smart move, we now have fixed the most common mistake (too little exercises for a muscle group) people do when it comes to full-body workouts while keeping the biggest benefit (more frequent stimulation).

Use this tactic for every muscle group, and we guarantee that you will increase your muscle growth.

*: you can't fully separate each head, but you can emphasize each head more than others)

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