strength phase 3 training program image

Strength phase 3 – Wave Load – Upper Body / lower Body split program

Strength is the mother of all fitness qualities so it is very important to build a good foundation of strength regardless of your fitness goals. This phase consists of 2 workouts done alternately. Ideally this program should be performed 4 x a week.

The premise of each session is to do a wave load. This means that the repetitions will descend, come back up then descend again for example 6 reps 4 reps 2 reps followed by 6 reps 4 reps then 2 reps. The goal is to better your numbers from the first wave.

Workout A – Lower Body

Exercise A1: Back Squat – Heels elevated

Another phase of back squat with lower reps this time and therefore more load.

  • Keep wrists and elbows vertically under the bar
  • Ensure knees track over the toes
  • Squat as low as possible with good form – ideally past parallel

Exercise A2: Lying leg curl – Dorsi up and plantar down

This exercise pairs up well with back squats and targets the knee flexors. You take advantage of being stronger in a dorsi flex position, therefore overloading the plantar foot position on the eccentric ( lowering ) portion of the lift.

  • Keep hips down on the bench
  • Be explosive on the concentric curl and slow and controlled on the eccentric
  • Keep toes lifted on the way up and pointed on the way down

Exercise B1: Horizontal Back Extension – DB on chest

You can never be strong in the lower back! Make sure you stick to the slow controlled tempo, try to increase the weight every set. The horizontal is a progression from the 45% Back extension.

Exercise B2: Seated calf raise

A great exercise for both strengthening and stretching the soleus muscle of the calf.

  • Control the tempo and hold the stretch at the bottom
  • Relax the upper body to further isolate the calfs

Download Lower Body Program

Workout B – Upper Body

Exercise A1: Bench Press

The ultimate chest builder and probably the most famous lift of all, the bench press is great for putting maximal weight through the upper body. It is important to view the bench press as a full body lift, as the old saying goes “ you can’t fire a cannon out of a canoe”.

  • Ensure scapulars are retracted
  • Try to push through your feet to stabilise the body
  • Hips must stay on bench but you can arch through the thorasic spine

Exercise A2: Pull up – Pronated

The hardest of all chin up variations, pull ups are done with a pronated grip. This grip variation really isolates the lats as you can only activate the brachialis bicep effectively.

  • Aim to drive elbows down and back
  • Ensure shoulders touch the bar at the top
  • Control excessive body movement by turning on glutes and abdominals

Exercise B1: Lying Half Powel Raise

A great shoulder stability exercise, this builds good scapular control.

  • Lie on your side with the upper arm out stretched in front
  • Start the action by retracting the upper arm then lift straight up over the head
  • You should feel the rear deltoid and mid back activate

Exercise B2: 80% DB Bicep curls – Supinated

The elbow flexors are often the weakest link for females that want to do chin ups so will benefit from some direct work, equally most guys won’t need asking twice to work biceps!

  • Make sure you start the exercise with your elbows back behind the shoulders
  • Keep the elbows still when you curl and try to squeeze the bicep at the top
  • Control tempo on the way down and squeeze the tricep at the bottom

Download Upper Body Program

The ideal split for this program is to train: Mon / Tue then Thurs / Fri. Aim to complete the program in 3 weeks.

Let us know how you get on and if you would like addition support or more information about personal training with us, don’t hesitate to contact us using the form below.

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