7-Day Push-Pull Workout Routine To Build Muscle & Strength
The best body workout split ensures you’re training every muscle group evenly throughout the week. And while your training split can differ depending on your own personal preferences, one of the main variations is a full-body push-pull workout that targets all muscle groups effectively.
If you’re ready to maximize your muscle growth, check out this seven-day workout split that can help you build muscle mass in no time.
Day 1: Push (Upper Body Focus)
Start your week off right by pushing yourself to new limits. Simply put, your push muscles are those you use to push things. Notably, these are your triceps, deltoids (shoulders), and chest, as well as your quads (thighs) and calves.
When we say upper body focus, this isn’t to say that you’ll never use your legs throughout the workout. However, we’re going to focus our efforts on building out those shoulder and chest muscles more substantially than the legs.
The bench press is a classic exercise for a reason, and it is one of the best moves to get a bigger chest. We love this move because you can do it with a barbell or dumbbells and target different portions of the chest just by changing the bench angle. For instance, an incline bench targets the upper portion of your chest, whereas a decline bench targets the lower portion.
Be sure to think about bringing your biceps closer to one another during this move to squeeze the pecs and get the most out of this move.
Barbell or Dumbbell Shoulder Press
A shoulder press is one of the greatest moves to build those deltoid muscles. You can do overhead presses with dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells, or anything with weight.
Do a shoulder press while seated on a bench to gain more stability in your back, or take it standing to force your core to remain stable and make the move even more effective. You can even incorporate your legs into this move by adding a squat before your shoulder press, effectively completing the dumbbell thruster with ease and making it a compound motion.
Having strong triceps can make other push moves even easier. Tricep extensions with dumbbells or resistance bands can make your triceps look toned, sleek, and bulky.
Day 2: Pull (Lower Body Focus)
As the name implies, your pull muscles are the muscles you use to pull things. This includes your back, biceps, hamstrings (back of your thighs), and glutes.
Let’s give your upper body a little break and focus our energy on the pull muscles below your waist. Here is a sample leg workout full of pull exercises.
Deadlifts are perhaps the golden standard for strength training because they are one of the most effective full-body exercises. They incorporate almost every muscle in your body, but they can do a number on your hamstrings and glutes.
Master the form before adding heavier weight. Soon, you’ll be able to step it up with some deadlift variations like single-leg deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts (RDLs), or RDL to bent over rows for some upper body action as well.
Glute Bridges or Hip Thrusts
Glute bridges help isolate the glutes in ways that few other exercises can, and you can pack on the heavy weights with this movement. You can even do this against a bench to increase your range of motion or lift one leg to isolate one side of the glutes.
Day 3: Rest Day
Everybody needs a rest day – especially when you’re training so hard. Rest days help your muscles replenish their glycogen stores, which helps reduce muscle fatigue and prepare your muscles for the next workout. Rest days let you hop back into your next training session with even more stamina.
Here’s the thing – a rest day doesn’t mean you should sit around all day and do nothing. You should still be active every day, just not to such an extreme extent as your training sessions.
Use your rest days to go on a long walk or a hike with a friend. Maybe take some time to play a pick-up basketball game, or go for a gentle bike ride. Or better yet, use Speede’s Recovery Mode for some light activity that can help warm your major muscle groups and loosen them up. This can work to prevent muscle soreness and stiffness later on during your training days.
Day 4: Push (Lower Body Focus)
We worked those shoulders, chest muscles, and triceps earlier in the week – now it’s time for the quads and calves to have their time to shine.
Again, this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t do any push-ups or tricep extensions today… but you don’t need to try to PR on your bench press when we’re focusing on squats.
Squats are another one of those exercises that is popular for a reason. It is one of the best lower body movements that targets your quadriceps heavily yet still ignites a fire in the glutes and requires some activation in the core.
Traditional barbell squats are tough for even experienced lifters, so you can start with some dumbbells. Even then, squat variations take many forms and can be used to target different muscles. Narrow squats give your quads a run for their money, while a wider stance sumo squat will focus more energy onto the glutes.
Lunges are great for targeting the quads, glutes, and everything in between. Classic forward lunges can be effective, but be warned that these can cause knee problems if done incorrectly. Try doing reverse lunges to work the same muscles in a safer, more effective manner.
Bulked-up calf muscles can make you instantly appear more toned, and calf raises are the quintessential calf exercise to get your muscles pumped up. Try keeping your toes on a plate to maximize your range of motion and get even more out of each rep.
Day 5: Pull (Upper Body Focus)
It’s time to let your back and biceps steal the show. Upper body pull days are one of the most fun days of the week.
You either love them or hate them, but pull-ups are one of the best exercises to work every muscle in your upper body. Take a wider grip to work the lat muscles in your back, or use a more narrow grip with palms facing inward to activate the biceps and traps a little more.
If you’re still working up to being able to do a pull-up, lat pulldowns let you practice. These work the same muscles as a pull-up but give you a little more control over the weight. So once you’ve mastered these, try pulling your body weight up over that pull-up bar.
If you want bulging arm muscles, bicep curls must be part of your repertoire. You can do bicep curls with barbells, dumbbells, resistance bands, or any type of weight. Rotate your palms to face each other to turn this move into a hammer curl, working the brachialis muscle to make your arms look bulkier to fill out those sleeves.
Day 6: Rest Day
Time for another day of rest. Use this time to catch up on some sleep, but be sure to go for a nice long walk.
Day 7: Full Body Conditioning
Strength training is one of the best ways to burn body fat and accelerate muscle building, but you still need to get your cardio in somehow. Use the seventh day to do some full-body athletic conditioning to get your heart rate up and improve your balance, coordination, agility, and power.
This is a great time to do HIIT, or high-intensity interval training full of compound movements. Take some of those moves you did earlier in the week, remove the weight, and make them fast-paced cardio moves instead. Front squats, split squats, jump lunges, speed skaters, explosive push-ups, and burpees are just a few examples of moves you can do to get your blood pumping and your muscles firing on all cylinders.
You’ve got seven days in every week, which gives you plenty of opportunities to get stronger than ever. And this push-pull split gives you everything you need to flesh out your muscles in every single part of your body while still taking some time for rest.
But training frequency might not mean a thing if the equipment you’re using just isn’t up to standards. Why not make your workout more effective by choosing a machine that adapts to you?
Speede Fitness uses the latest muscle science to deliver results in a fraction of the time. Isokinetic training offers consistent resistance throughout an entire movement to ensure that your muscles are being worked to their peak level of performance.
The best way for you to see what we mean is to feel it. Request a demo today to see how Speede can completely revolutionize your training style.