The Four-Day Split Workout for Ladies

Below you will see an intense training program designed for ladies with at least 8 months of experience in the gym. The purpose of this workout regimen is not so oriented towards weight loss, as it is to maintaining kilograms with a gradual increase over time in the weight percentage of muscle versus fat tissue.

In other words, the kilos remain the same, while the fat melts in the “bad spots” and muscle is slowly gained in the good spots. Whether this program will work or not, depends on building and maintaining a proper diet.

Week 1

Day Muscle Groups Trained
Monday Back, rear delts, triceps
Tuesday Rest
Wednesday Legs, glutes, abdominals (glute focus)
Thursday Rest
Friday Chest, shoulders, biceps
Saturday Rest
Sunday Legs, glutes, abdominals (Legs focus)

Week 2

Day Muscle Groups Trained
Monday Rest
Tuesday Back, rear delts, triceps
Wednesday Rest
Thursday Legs, glutes, abdominals (glute focus)
Friday Chest, shoulders, biceps
Saturday Rest
Sunday Legs, glutes, abdominals (Legs focus)
Back, Rear Deltoids and Triceps
Muscle Group Exercises
Back, Rear Deltoids Vertical lat pulldown- 3 sets of 8-10
Dumbbell rows- 3 sets of 10
Dumbbell pullover – 3 sets of 12
Dumbbell rear flys- 3 sets of 12
Triceps Close grip bench press- 3 sets of 10-12
Overhead triceps extension (dumbbell)- 3 sets of 10

The Exercises

Back

Vertical lat pull-down

Vertical lat pulldown

This is one of the basic back exercises, which is great to use and gain strength on, in case you are unable to do pull-ups

Execution

  • Grab the bar as wide as possible
  • Sit down comfortably and tuck your legs under the pads
  • Lean back slightly, puffing your chest up and tensing the back muscles
  • Pull the bar down to the lower portion of your chest
  • Hold the contraction for a split second and return to the initial position
  • Proceed to next rep

Dumbbell rows

dumbbell rows female

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight
  • Place the dumbbell by the side of the bench
  • Place the knee on the bench so that it is at a 90-degree angle as illustrated
  • Place the outer leg stably so that you have balance
  • Place your arm on the bench
  • Lift the dumbbell off the ground so that it is in a dead hanging position
  • Keep your back straight
  • Row the dumbbell up, with your elbow being as close to the body as possible and until it is parallel to the ground
  • Let the dumbbell down slowly and completely, to stretch out the back

Dumbbell pullover

dumbbell pullover female

This long-forgotten exercise will help you shape up your upper body overall, as it stretches out the back, chest, contracts the shoulder muscles and helps prevent shoulder injuries, by adequately involving the joints.

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight, preferably a really light one
  • Lie down on the side of the bench with your upper back being at the edge, as illustrated
  • Lift the dumbbell above your face, grabbing it with both hands
  • Bend your elbows slightly so that the arms aren’t completely straight
  • Let the dumbbell down slowly, stretching the upper body (Arms remain in the same position, there is no elbow extension)
  • Lift the dumbbell up while keeping constant tension on the working musculature

Rear deltoid exercises

Dumbbell rear flys

dumbbell rear flys female

Due to the fact rear deltoids are involved in most of the back movements, you will only need 1 more, basic exercise like the dumbbell rear flys, in order to finish them up.

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight
  • Sit down on the bench
  • Grab the dumbbells and lie down on your legs
  • Bend elbows slightly and keep the arms at that position (No elbow contraction or extension)
  • Lift the dumbbells up in a “fly” fashion, contracting the rear deltoids
  • Let the dumbbells down slowly
  • Repeat, keeping a moderate pace

Triceps exercises

Close grip bench press

close grip bench press female

This is a compound movement that involves the chest, shoulders and primarily the triceps musculature, due to the close grip.

Execution

  • Lie down on the bench
  • Grab the bar at shoulder width, or slightly more narrow
  • Un-rack the bar
  • Let the bar down and right below your chest
  • Push the bar up

Note

Elbows can be locked at the top of the movement to achieve full triceps contraction; however, it is recommended that you do it as slowly as possible, in order to avoid injuries.

Overhead dumbbell triceps extension

overhead dumbbell triceps extension female

This next, isolated movement for the triceps will further engage the 3 triceps heads, without involving any other muscle groups synergistically, in other words, the triceps will be working on its own.

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight, stand with feet at shoulder width
  • Lift the dumbbell above your head, holding it with two hands
  • Let the dumbbell down, keeping the elbow at a 90-degree angle
  • Lift the dumbbell up, contracting the triceps

Note

Keep the elbows closer to the head and not flared out.

Legs, Glutes, Abdominals – Glutes Focus
Muscle Group Exercises
Legs (Quadriceps and Hamstrings) Barbell squats- 5 sets of 10-12
Dumbbell lunges- 3 sets of 12
Hamstring curls- 3 sets of 12
Glutes Hip thrust- 5 sets of 12
Straight leg kick back- 5 sets of 15
Abdominals Regular crunches with straight arms- 5 sets of 30 repetitions

Leg exercises

Barbell squats

barbell squats female

This first compound, basic movement involves the whole lower body. The quadriceps (front thighs) are the main working muscle group, in synergy with the hamstrings and glutes, while the calves stabilize the movement.

However, to emphasize on the glutes, you can add an isometric contraction at the top (Glute focused squat)

Execution

  • Un-rack the bar, placing it in the middle of your trapezius, comfortably
  • Stand with your feet at shoulder width
  • Keep your back straight and toes pointing out slightly
  • Squat down, until your legs are parallel to the ground
  • Move up slowly, keeping the tension on your lower body
  • Contract glutes at the top and hold the contraction for a split second
  • Repeat

Dumbbell lunges

dumbbell lunges female

Execution

  • Choose a weight which will allow you to be stable during the movement
  • Grab the dumbbells and keep them by your side
  • Keep your back straight
  • Step with your feet at shoulder width
  • Take a big step forward and squat down until your opposite knee is 1-2 inches off of the ground
  • Step back and proceed to the opposite leg

Hamstring curls

hamstring curls female

Execution

  • Lie down and place your legs under the pads, so that it is pretty much at ankle level
  • Grab the handles
  • Curl slowly and contract the hamstrings
  • Keep the contraction at the top for up to one second
  • Let the pad down slowly, keeping the tension on your hamstrings
  • Stretch as much as possible, without having the weight go all the way down

Glute exercises

Hip thrusts

Hip thrusts

This glute exercise can be done with either no weight, or a barbell/disk/dumbbell on your hips.

Execution

  • Lie down on the side of the bench like you would for a dumbbell pullover
  • Step forward with your feet together, letting your butt hang in the air
  • Thrust up, contracting your glutes
  • Hold the contraction for up to a second and let the hips go down slowly

Straight leg kick back

Straight leg kick back

Execution

  • Stand on all four, with your hands being at shoulder width
  • Lift one leg up and extend it, so that it is completely straight
  • Keep your back straight and kick up explosively, contracting the glutes
  • Let your leg go down slowly
  • Repeat

Abdominal exercises

Straight arm crunches

straight arm crunches

Execution

  • Lie down on the mat
  • Pull your legs in and keep your arms straight, above your head, as illustrated
  • Crunch up, contracting the abdominal musculature
  • Hold the contraction for a split second and slowly go down, keeping the tension on the abs
Chest, Shoulders and Biceps
Muscle Group Exercises
Chest Incline barbell bench press- 4 sets of 10
Cable crossovers- 4 sets of 12
Shoulders Dumbbell Arnold presses- 4 sets of 10
Dumbbell lateral raises- 3 sets of 12
Biceps Dumbbell preacher curls- 3 sets of 10
Dumbbell hammer curls- 3 sets of 12

Chest exercises

Incline barbell bench press

incline barbell bench press female

Execution

  • Lie down on the bench and place your legs comfortably
  • Keep your back slightly arched
  • Grab the bar wider than shoulder width and un-rack it
  • Let the bar down to the upper portion of your chest, slowly- Avoid having the bar bounce off of your chest
  • Push up explosively, without locking your elbows out

Cable crossovers

Cable Crossovers for female

Execution

  • Grab both pulleys and stand right in the middle of the cable machine
  • Step forward with one leg for balance
  • Lean forward slightly
  • Keep the elbows slightly bent and static in that position- No flexion or extension in the arm is observed
  • Push forward, contracting the chest muscles
  • Hold the contraction briefly and let the weight go down slowly

Shoulder exercises

Dumbbell Arnold presses

dumbbell Arnold presses female

This exercise is a variation of the usual dumbbell shoulder press, with an added supination of the wrist at the bottom of the movement

Execution

  • Sit down on the bench and rest your back comfortably
  • Take the dumbbells and lift them up to head level, with your palms facing you
  • Push up into a shoulder press, rotating the dumbbells
  • Let the dumbbells down while simultaneously rotating them to the initial position

Dumbbell lateral raises

Dumbbell lateral raises

Execution

  • Grab the dumbbells and stand with your feet at shoulder width, stably
  • Keep the dumbbells in front of you
  • Keep your elbows slightly bent- Again, static, with no flexion or extension in the elbow
  • Lift the dumbbells up, laterally, without adding inertial movements (e.g- leaning forward)

Biceps exercises

Dumbbell preacher curls

dumbbell preacher curls female

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight and sit down on the preacher
  • Place your arm so that the armpit is tightly tucked to the edge of the pad
  • Let the dumbbell go down slowly- stretch out the biceps and keep the tension there
  • Curl up, until you reach full contraction
  • Let the dumbbell down again

Dumbbell hammer curls

Dumbbell hammer curls

Execution

  • Pick an appropriate weight
  • Grab the dumbbells so that their sides are pointing forward
  • Curl up, without rotating the wrist
  • Let the dumbbell down slowly
  • Proceed to the opposite arm
Legs, Glutes, Abdominals – Legs Focus
Muscle Group Exercises
Legs (Quadriceps and Hamstrings) Hack squats- 5 sets of 10-12
Leg press- 4 sets of 12
Leg extensions- 4 sets of 15
Seated hamstring curls – 3 sets of 12
Glutes Hip thrust- 5 sets of 12
Straight leg kick back- 5 sets of 15
Calves Standing calf raises- 6 sets of 12
Abdominals Leg raise crunch- 5 sets of 20repetitions

Leg exercises

Hack squats

hack squats female

Due to the fact this is a quadricep focused workout, we will start off with an exercise which is fixed (not free weight) and prioritizes the quadriceps

Execution

  • Get under the pads
  • Step on the upper part of the platform at shoulder width
  • Keep your toes slightly pointing to the sides, like you would during a normal squat
  • Keep your back straight and tucked to the back rest
  • Un-rack the sled and grab the handles
  • Keep your knees slightly bent and not locked out to maintain tension on the legs
  • Go down slowly
  • Squat up explosively but steadily, again- No knee lockout

Leg press

leg press female

Execution

  • Sit down and tuck your butt to the seat
  • Place your legs high on the platform, slightly wider than shoulder width and with the toes slightly opened up
  • Un-rack the sled, grab the handles and avoid locking the knees out
  • Rest your head back
  • Let the sled go down slowly
  • Push up explosively, without locking the knees out

Leg extensions

leg extensions female

This last, isolated quadriceps exercise will help you squeeze out the last bits of muscle energy you have left.

Execution

  • Sit down on the machine and grab the handles on the side
  • Place your legs under the pad- Knees should be right above the edge of the seat, while the pad is at ankle level
  • Extend your legs slowly, contracting the quadriceps
  • Let the weight go down slowly, keeping the tension on the working musculature

Seated hamstring curls

seated hamstring curls female

Execution

  • Lay down comfortably and grab the handles
  • Place your legs under the pad, so that it is at ankle/heel level
  • Curl up slowly, contracting the hamstrings- Avoid having the pad touch your glutes
  • Let the weight go down slowly and stretch out the hamstrings

Glute exercises

The gluteus exercises remain the same as in the glutes-focused workout, however, the difference here is that you can use significantly lower weights for these exercises.

Calf exercises

Standing calf raises

standing calf raises female

Execution

  • Stand on the edge with your toes and tuck your shoulders under the pads
  • Lift the weight up, while standing on your toes
  • Let your heels go down, stretching out the calves
  • Push up explosively, contracting the calf musculature
  • Let down slowly and repeat

Note

Full contraction can be held for up to a second.

Abdominal exercises

Leg raise crunch

leg raise crunch female

This finishing exercise is pretty much a regular crunch, with a little twist- The leg raise.

Execution

  • Lay down and tuck your legs in, so that the heels are closer to your butt
  • Place your arms behind your head
  • Crunch up, simultaneously raising your legs and torso, to achieve optimal abdominal contraction
  • Let down slowly, maintaining tension on the abdominal wall

Keep in mind that this workout program is for ladies with, at the very least, half a year of experience in the gym. Knowing how to execute each exercise correctly is a MUST, as poor execution with no warm up beforehand, may lead to injuries.

This split will help you slim down and tone up, however, it is not a magical tool, so you will need to take good nutrition under consideration!

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