One of the most well-known types of weight-training routines is the full-body workout. It can be used for a variety of purposes (muscle gain, strength gain, etc.) and experience levels (beginner, intermediate, and advanced).
I’ll go over all you need to know about it (including the 2, 3, and 4-day variants of the full-body split) and give you three free exercise routines to try out.
What is a workout routine full body?
A whole-body exercise regimen is a strength training program that focuses on training the majority of all of the body at the same time rather than breaking it up into individual areas.
You might have an upper-body day, or a chest day, or an arm day, or a leg day, or a back and biceps day, or a push day, or anything similar with various types of workouts. But with a total-body workout.
This means that each session may include training for the following muscle groups:
This does not imply that you must perform many exercises for each body area in each session, as you would with one of the other types of workouts I just discussed.
In this case, you’d be in the gym for 3+ hours, which is excessive and insane.
Full-body workouts, on the other hand, take advantage of a higher training frequency (more on that later) as well as the fact that specific exercises (known as multi-joint compound exercises) target various body parts.
The bench press, for example, is regarded as a chest exercise. It does, however, target the shoulders and triceps. Likewise, most back exercises target the biceps, shoulder pressing exercises target the triceps, and many leg exercises target the quadriceps, hamstrings, and/or glutes to some degree.
What are the Advantages of Full-Body Exercise?
There are several advantages of a workout routine full-body, but I believe the following three are the most important:
Simplicity – While no training split is truly complex (e.g. upper/lower, push/pull/legs, etc. ), the complete body is about as simple as it gets.
Convenience and time management – Most individuals can easily fit it into their schedule because there are only 2, 3, or 4 workouts per week and you can simply take the weekends off (or change it so you train on weekends and take other days off instead).
Increased frequency of training – You’ll be able to train each muscle group, activity, or movement pattern 2-4 times per week, depending on which version of the split you’re using (more on that later). What difference does it make?
Because studies (sources here and here) and real-world experience have demonstrated that this frequency (i.e. twice per week or more) is likely more successful for goals like muscle building and strength gain than a once-per-week frequency, which is frequently the least effective.
Which Split Version Should You Use?
Here’s what I’d suggest
Version for 3 days- For the majority of those completing a workout routine full-body, I believe the 3-day version is the best option. It allows for an appropriate frequency for most people’s goals, it will fit nicely into most people’s schedules, and it is unlikely to be problematic for most individuals in terms of recovery concerns when planned right.
Version for 2 Days – This is the greatest option if you can only work out twice a week. It’s as easy as that. (Read more about the best 2-day workout splits here.)
Version for 4 Days – This is a variant I rarely suggest. Why? For starters, it’s the version that has the most potential to cause issues with healing and overuse problems.
But it’s because this version is best for folks who need to train each body part, activity, or movement pattern this frequently, and that’s not someone I encounter very often.
This version is an option to explore if you have a goal that requires this level of regularity.
Who Should do a Full Body Workout?
As I previously stated, whole-body training can be beneficial for almost any objective and experience level.
So, who is a full-body workout regimen best for?
Beginners with any objective- If you’re a beginner (i.e., less than 6 months of consistent and properly programmed weight training), a 3-day complete body program is usually the ideal option for you. Why?
Because, at this early stage, a greater frequency (3 times per week) will allow you to make the most progress in terms of muscle and strength development, as well as learning proper form, increasing work capacity and volume tolerance, and just getting better at weight training.
This is why many popular starting programs (such as Starting Strength) are structured on this split. The same is true of my starter program.
People who are only able to train twice a week- If you can only work out two days per week, regardless of your objective or experience level, the 2-day full body split is your only choice for accomplishing a workout frequency higher than once per week.
As a result, it’s the only split I recommend to folks who have a busy schedule yet still want to make good progress. (For this reason, I’ve included a 2-day program in Superior Muscle Growth that incorporates this variation of the split.)
People who have a goal that necessitates a more frequent training regimen.
There are a variety of splits available that allow a person to train each body component, exercise, or movement pattern twice a week. However, what if you have a goal that necessitates training three or four times a week?
Certain strength and performance goals, as well as muscle-building goals including a specialization approach (i.e. targeting a certain body region by training it with increased volume and/or frequency),
may fall into this category. In such instances, the whole body split is frequently the greatest option for attaining a frequency greater than twice per week.
A workout routine full body is the perfect thing to start your day and make yourself energetic and fit. Still, thinking? Just stop thinking and start doing exercise.