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Full-Body Vs. Split Workouts

October 26th, 2020 by Debbie Martilotta

There’s no skirting the fact that functional, full-body movements provide the most value for time and effort. Exercises like lunges and push-ups will always be more effective than exercises that isolate a single muscle — and for those of us with limited time, we owe it to ourselves to get the most out of each and every workout.

Quadricep extensions, calf raises, tricep push-downs, and other isolation exercises won’t do much for you if you don’t have time to dedicate to functional movements like squats, deadlifts, push-ups, and shoulder presses.

For busy people, full-body workouts are key to getting fit.

A full-body workout engages all of your muscle groups during one session and takes many forms — HIIT, high-intensity resistance training (HIRT), bodyweight workouts, or conventional weightlifting.

The problem is, split plans lose effectiveness if you don’t have five or six days to work out each week. This simply doesn’t work for people who can’t exercise six days a week. If you miss one workout on this plan, you neglect an entire muscle group that week. Split workouts plans also work best if you can dedicate at least 45 minutes each day to your workout — working your arms for 20 minutes won’t benefit you nearly as much as working your whole body for 20 minutes.

Full-body workouts maximize your time and give you real gains like whole-body strength, core stabilization, functional mobility, and endurance.

Other reasons for choosing full-body workouts instead of split workouts include: 

  • Full-body workouts generally yield a higher total energy expenditure per session (i.e., you burn more calories).
  • Full-body workouts force you to focus on functional movements, which you need for longevity and high quality of life. 
  • Full-body workouts tend to include more movements that improve core stabilization and posture. 

Still, wondering about shifting from split workouts to full body HIIT sessions? Read the balance of this article from c|net and give me a call to train in the greater Grand Rapids area.