The Guide To Building Your Upper Body

building your upper body guide

We’ve all seen those men called “upper-bodybuilders”… they sport some impressive pectorals and arms, but their legs look like they belong on a 12-year old girl. They have a massive upper body which no tank top can contain, but hide their legs in baggy sweatpants. To correct this sad phenomenon, a new trend in bodybuilding training has emerged in the last two years, and it involves utilizing two different training protocols for the body, completed in the same week. This revolutionary training protocol devotes one training day to the muscles of the legs, and two sessions to the other muscles of the body.

The rationale behind this model is that the legs require more recovery time, as well as more sets. Training them one day per week means you can squat and leg press for 90 straight minutes, then you do not have to address them again for another 7 days. They have adequate time to recover. The upper body, on the other hand, receives more frequent training of less sets. This allows the bodybuilder to focus on key areas of the upper body. In other words, you are trying to grow the overall size and mass of the legs, while refining the upper body. Here is a sample training routine.

  • Monday: Chest, shoulders, triceps
  • Tuesday: Back, biceps
  • Wednesday: Legs
  • Thursday: Chest, shoulders, triceps
  • Friday: Back, biceps
  • Saturday: OFF
  • Sunday: OFF

As you can see, the total volume of training for body parts such as chest, back, and shoulders will have to be greatly decreased so that these muscle groups can recover in time for their next workout, just 72 hours later. The legs, on the other hand, can be trained with unlimited sets, as they now have a full 150+ hours of recovery time until they are to be attacked again.

This training method works for bodybuilders with massive legs, but very poor upper bodies as well. Reverse the list, and you see a routine that “lower-bodybuilders” can employ for growth.

  • Monday: Legs
  • Tuesday: Chest, shoulders
  • Wednesday: Back
  • Thursday: Legs
  • Friday: Biceps, triceps
  • Saturday: OFF
  • Sunday: OFF

Any adjustment can be made to allow the bodybuilder to focus upon growing one area (1 day for mass gain) and refining other areas (2 days for muscle group improvement). If you suffer from a physique imbalance, try mixing one and two day splits into your routine. You might find it helps to even things out!