Bodybuilding Program – 2 day split training method

This is a short section from my book, “Jim’s Weight Training & Bodybuilding Workout Plan”. To get a full picture of what the 2-day split bodybuilding program for Progression is about, I would recommend that you read this article in full and check out any internal references you find. I’ve really taken the time to explain the method behind this madness 🙂

If you use a 2-day split as part of your progressive bodybuilding program, you will really experience a lot of fitness benefits.

Whenever I’ve used this 2-day split routine in the past, I found that the higher intensity usually takes a few weeks to adjust to, but I’ve always developed a leaner and fuller look if my diet was also on the ball.

Supplementing with creatine is also a good idea if you are going to give this a go. Check out this solid creatine supplementation program.

After the first time I tried this 2-day split bodybuilding program, I noticed that I had some muscle groups that were not developing as fast as the others. Nevertheless, doing this 2-day split in the first place helped me find my weaknesses, and then I found I could tweak this routine and tailor it to my own needs.

For example, my chest was overpowered by my shoulders and lats. So, I added chest exercises in place of some back exercises to balance things out a bit.

Now this was just me and everyone is different. So it is important to be honest with yourself and identify your own weaknesses and strengths so that you can tailor a 2-day split to your very own needs.

I will be happy to help you with ideas, so give me a shout out if you would like my take on this.

Anyway, here is the 2-day split bodybuilding program that features in my book.

This is the second 12-week cycle in the year’s training plan.

Second 12 Weeks 2-Day Split bodybuilding program (Pre-Exhaust Phase)

After the first 12 weeks of strength training, we should respond to this next phase very well. We would have built up a fair bit of strength and are now ready to start using that strength to chisel some muscle and target a bit more precisely.

We are going to be using isolation exercises before we do our compound movements. These are known as pre-exhaust sets.

The theory behind pre-exhaust sets is simple. If you isolate the muscle and wear it out, when you come to do your big compound movement on that muscle, it will have to work harder to lift the weight. If this kind of training is done for a fair length of time, say 12 weeks, your body will adapt and will become even stronger and more developed than before.


You will probably need to re-assess the weight that you lift on your compound exercises when you first start training in this way.

The transition from the first stage to this one can really mess with your head at first. You will notice that the amount of weight that you were lifting on your compound movements in the previous weeks may have dropped quiet significantly.

This is normal. It is easy to think that you are taking backward steps but you need to realize that your body is not used to training in this way.

You are pre-exhausting your muscle group before you hit your presses. This means that your muscles are really struggling through the exercises. And what’s more? You are making them do extra reps.

Please don’t be tempted to sacrifice form for weight at this point. Push yourself, yes, but always remember that if you dilute the movement by using incorrect form you are diluting your results.

The first few weeks of this stage will probably be the toughest as it will take time for your body to adapt. But towards the end of this 12-week cycle, you will be even stronger and bigger than before. You will be very surprised at what you can lift on a bench press when starting from fresh after this stage.


It is now important that you stick to the exercise order in which they are listed. You need to make sure that you are doing an isolation exercise for a muscle group directly followed by a compound movement to ensure that you are challenging your muscles in the correct way.

The second 12-week bodybuilding program period looks like this:

4 training sessions per week, preferably 2-days-on-1-day-off and 2-days-on-2-days-off.

An ideal example would be:

Workout A on Mondays & Thursdays

Workout B on Tuesdays & Fridays

Rest days on Wednesdays, Saturdays & Sundays

4 sets of 12 to 8 reps

Workout A

  1. Warm up with 10 minutes on the cross trainer
  2. Pec fly
  3. Bench press
  4. Lat pull-down
  5. Bent over rows shoulder with grip
  6. Bent over rows close grip
  7. Tricep push down on Cables
  8. Tricep dips (reasonable failure)
  9. Crunches (Reasonable failure)

Workout B

  1. Warm up with 10 minutes on the cross trainer
  2. Bicep curl
  3. Lateral raises with dumbbells
  4. Shoulder press
  5. Leg extensions
  6. Leg press
  7. Lying leg curl
  8. Calf raises

If you wish to try this 2-day split routine, it is best to give it a dedicated, full 12 weeks. Remember that if you are looking to develop your physique, you need to train with a weight that challenges your muscles correctly.

Don’t be the guy who puts in all of the hours in the gym but doesn’t lift with good form simply because he wants to be seen lifting the heaviest weights. You will only be cheating yourself out of gains. Focus on the muscle that you are training and make sure that you hit it. If you are only lifting the 5 kg but hitting exhaustion at 12 – 8 reps with good form, this is your weight and you will develop.

Thanks for reading, and if you have any question about this 2-day split bodybuilding program, please give me a shout out or leave a comment in the comment section below.

If you would like the full year of training, including detailed exercise pictures and descriptions, get Jim’s Weight Training and Bodybuilding Workout Plan:

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Get Jim’s weight Training & Bodybuilding Workout Plan