“What is the best body building workout schedule?” is a question that beginning bodybuilders pose time and time again. This quest for a holy grail of perfect workout schedule has been sought for generations and the truth is that the actual components of a workout schedule are only slightly more important than the timing of the schedule itself. From rudimentary exercises that can be done in the home or in a basic gym up to compound muscle group super sets the pros use, the secret to a body building workout schedule is in its consistency.
Day in and day out, at approximately the same time of day, you should be exercising your body and you mind to develop the habit of your new routine. By ‘scheduling’ yourself for body building, you will train yourself to get the feeling that something is wrong if you skip a session. This mental training starts with your preparation for your workout – the ritual of preparing you gym bag, walking into the gym, changing your clothes and mentally going over the routine you are about to perform.
Tiger Woods does not vary his approach to the ball depending on the weather. His swing, perhaps but the repetition of each practice swing has trained him to ‘feel’ when something is wrong and to step back and start over.
That being said, one of the most useful beginner workout schedule follows the work week alternating weight lifting with aerobic exercise every other day.
Day 1 – upper body workout
Day 2 – aerobic
Day 3 – lower body workout
Day 4 – aerobic
Day 5 – upper body workout
Day 6 – aerobic
Day 7 – rest
Start the next week with a lower body workout and continue alternating. This body building workout schedule accomplishes three things. One, it builds the habit of working out (almost) every day, the benefits of which are described above.
Two, it allows for ample rest between workouts of the same muscle group. It is in the rest period where your muscle actually grows. While you are in the gym working your muscles, they are under stress. It is in the reparation from that stress that the muscle becomes larger, not while it is under stress.
Three, it provides enough room for variety of exercises so that your muscles don’t get used to doing the same exercise each time. The human body very easily gets used to any strain it is put under. If you performed the same exercise over and over again with no variety your muscles would quickly adapt and your routine would reach a point of diminishing returns. By altering the resistance, position and movement of your exercise, your muscles will not be able to adapt to the new strain they are being put under. Small stabilizing muscles and different areas of the same muscle will be strained in subsequent workout sessions keeping your muscles under varying strain and allowing for greater growth during the rest phase.