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Alternate Training System

The norm when it comes to bodybuilding training is to focus on one main muscle group per workout. In addition, working large muscle groups like back and chest together is often discouraged. Contrary to this belief, we believe working muscles with opposite actions (antagonists) together is a very productive way to train. What we’re talking about is not a superset, but rather, alternating between sets of antagonist muscle groups, resting between sets – for example, performing one set of bent-over rows, resting one minute, performing one set of bench press, resting one minute, then start over, going back to bent-over rows.

Utilizing this method saves you time in the gym by allowing you to work two muscle groups in the time it normally takes to work one muscle group, but studies say it may also increase your performance.

For this type of training, it will alter over four weeks. Do this for a total of eight weeks and then take a one-week deload period.

  • Week 1 = 2 × 6–10
  • Week 2 = 3 × 6–10
  • Week 3 = 4 × 6–10
  • Week 4 = Repeat Week 1

Increasing the number of sets per exercise each week will challenge your body, leading to accelerated gains in muscle growth. In addition to increasing the number of sets per exercise each week, you should always strive to increase the weight/load you lift. This is another key factor in muscle growth. Let’s get into the program!

Monday: Back & Chest Antagonist Workout

Back Chest
Deadlifts Bench
Bent-over Rows Dumbbell or Barbell Incline Press
Pull-Ups or Lat Pulldowns Flyes
Seated Cable Rows Dips or Dumbbell Flyes

Alternate between sets for each back and chest exercise (e.g., perform one set of bent-over row then one set of bench press). Repeat until all sets for each exercise are completed, then proceed to the next two exercises.

Wednesday: Biceps & Triceps Antagonist Workout plus Forearms

Biceps Triceps Forearms
Barbell Curls Close-Grip Bench Barbell Forearms Curls
Dumbbell Curls Skullcrushers Dumbbell Forearm Curls
Cable Curls Tricep Pressdowns

Alternate between sets for each biceps and triceps exercise (e.g., perform one set of barbell curls then one set of close-grip bench). Repeat until all sets for each exercise are completed, then proceed to the next two exercises.

Friday: Qaudricep & Hamstring Antagonist Workout

Quads Hams Calves
Squats Stiff-Legged Deadlifts Seated Calf Raises
Leg Press Lying Leg Curls Standing Calf Raises
Leg Extensions Seated Leg Curls

Alternate between sets for each quad and hamstring exercise (e.g., perform one set of squats then one set of stiff-legged deadlifts). Repeat until all sets for each exercise are completed, then proceed to the next two exercises.

Saturday: Delts & Traps Workout & Core

Delts Traps
Military Press Barbell Shrugs
Dumbbell Side Laterals Dumbbell Shrugs
Rear Cable Laterals Prone Dumbbell Shrugs
Abs Lower Back/Obliques
Decline Crunches Back Extensions
Leg Raises Torso Twists

Alternate between sets for each delt and trap exercise (e.g., perform one set of military press then one set of barbell shrugs). Repeat until all sets for each exercise are completed, then proceed to the next two exercises.

Note: Rest time between sets = 1 minute.

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