Building strength and muscle go hand in hand. You can’t really build strength without muscle, nor can you build muscle without strength.
Most workout plans take this concept into account when it comes to programming something smart and effective that focuses on both but yet maximizes one - as you can’t effectively achieve both goals on the same program.
Before we get into one of the most popular approaches to training at the moment, we first need to recognize that we are all unique.
Unfortunately, what works for someone else may not work the same for us. Some guys can just look at a set of dumbbells and pack on muscle, and others have to grind through 2-hour sessions every day of the week just to achieve minimal gains.
The 6-day split is designed to be adapted to the individuals needs and abilities, so it’s key that you find a method that works best for you personally.
Before we get into the benefits of the 6-day bodybuilding split, let’s go over the principles of building muscle - muscular hypertrophy!
How to Build Muscle: Muscular Hypertrophy
The 6-day split is essentially built on the principles of hypertrophy.
Hypertrophy is described as an increase and growth of muscle cells - referring to an increase in muscular size achieved through resistance training.
Hypertrophy workout programs are not designed to increase strength, improve athletic performance, or boost endurance performance. Hypertrophy programs primarily cause muscle growth by increasing the size of your muscle fibres.1
To effectively gain muscle, we must apply the three principles of hypertrophy training:
- 1. Progressive tension overload
Muscle fibers must be exposed to increasing levels of tension through lifting weights and progressively lifting heavier overtime.
- 2. Muscle damage
Training causes our muscle fibres to tear (micro-tears). We must rest and recover adequately so our muscles can grow back stronger and more resilient, thus resulting in increased growth.
- 3. Metabolic stress
Regularly working our muscles to failure (our limit) can further instigate muscle gains.
Thus, the 6-day split is a program is based on the above principles and is designed strictly for the purpose of packing on muscle size!
Increasing muscle size is no easy feat, unfortunately. It takes consistency, patience, a suitable nutrition plan that focuses on gaining muscle, and an effective hypertrophy-based training program.
Speaking of effective training programs…
The 6 Day Body Building Split
Googling anything along the lines of “muscle building workout plans” will bring up thousands of results, each claiming to be the “best routine” or “best workout” for packing on muscle size.
Truth is, it doesn’t have to be as complicated as it seems. Of course, it’s not particularly easy and an effective training program needs to be in place if you want to achieve any muscle growth.
However, a program like the 6-day split is popular due to the simplicity and versatility, yet strong efficacy.
The 6-day bodybuilding split is an advanced training program designed to optimize the time spent targeting your major muscle groups each week.
It splits the week into individual training sessions, spread out over 6 intense days. The goal is to target each muscle group twice per week, which also giving them adequate time off between sessions in order to recover optimally.
Let’s look at an example of the 6-day workout split!
6 Day Split: Examples
Day 1: Chest & Shoulders
Day 2: Legs & Triceps
Day 3: Back & Core
Day 4: Biceps, Triceps & Legs
Day 5: Rest Day
Day 6: Chest & Shoulders
Day 7: Back & Biceps
Tuesday: Chest & Arms
Wednesday: Back & Shoulders
Friday: Chest & Arms
Saturday: Back & Shoulders
Sunday: Rest Day
You can see how this may be versatile, as you can choose what specific exercises you want to do for each muscle group.
Each workout should be around 45-60 minutes long to maximize muscle growth and should ideally focus on a rep range of around 8-12 reps per set.
The principles of muscle hypertrophy are progressive overload, muscle damage, and metabolic stress. So, it goes without saying that a training program that is built on these principles is key to muscle growth.
The 6-day split focuses on muscle hypertrophy by overloading the muscles with damage and stress, but also allowing adequate rest and recovery for each muscle group between sessions.
Don’t forget - your nutrition plays a big role in muscle growth, so ensure you’re taking in enough calories and protein to support your training and recovery!