Did you know that building your back, shoulders, and glutes will give you an hourglass shape?

 It’s easy to get confused on how to schedule your training with the vast literature and social media information out there. Today, I will share example training schedules, also known as training splits that can help you craft an hourglass physique. I like to think of bodybuilding in terms of pottery.

We must put in the dirty work and apply pressure to shape our bodies at the gym, which requires having enough clay to shape. If we begin applying tons of pressure (think caloric deficit, endless cardio, intense lifting sessions) and we have not developed the muscular shape underneath our bodyfat -- we will not be able to achieve the strong/toned physique we desire.

This is the reason that bodybuilding competitors bulk (gain muscle and a little fat) before they start leaning down for competition. They intentionally build mass and improve their weakest body parts, so that when they lose the fat, a beautiful shape emerges. You will also notice that they slowly incorporate cardio, so that they don’t sacrifice their muscle mass. 

The old adage, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail,” is so true when it comes to programming training. You have to have some idea of what you want your physique to look like and or do, before you can plan your training split.

 Physique Goal Examples 

  • Example #1: If you want to build your glutes, not spend hours at the gym, and see great results, you could do 2 lower body days. One lower body day could be the entire lower body, while the other could be just your lower backside (glutes, hamstrings, calves). 
  • Example #2: You have small shoulders, and you want to grow your lats and your shoulders so that your waist looks snatched. You could do one push day (chest, shoulders, triceps) and one pull day (back, biceps). Splitting these muscle groups up, instead of performing an entire upper body workout is fantastic for muscle hypertrophy. In order to grow, you must progressively overload these muscles, and push/pull training allows you to do just that. 

Now, on to the good stuff -- Sample Training Schedules

Give one of these a try if you are currently programming your own training.

Days a Week Sample Training Schedules

Monday - Push (chest, shoulders, triceps)

Tuesday - Rest

Wednesday - Pull (back, biceps)

Thursday - Rest

Friday - Total Leg Day (glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, calves)

Saturday - Rest

Sunday - Rest


Monday - Total Leg Day (glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, calves)

Tuesday - Push (chest, shoulders, triceps)

Wednesday - Rest

Thursday - Glutes/Hamstrings (glutes/hamstrings/calves)

Friday - Pull (back, biceps)

Saturday - Rest

Sunday - Rest


Monday - Total Leg Day (glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, calves)

Tuesday - Push (chest, shoulders, triceps)

Wednesday - Glutes/Hamstrings (glutes/hamstrings/calves

Thursday - Pull (back, biceps)

Friday - Shoulders/Core

Saturday - Rest

Sunday - Rest

About the Author: Courtney Alcala-Herrera MS

Courtney lives in Texas with her husband and their two dogs. Courtney is a clinical research and health education expert whose life mission is to spread health and lifestyle modifications to the public. When she’s not traveling across the country monitoring research studies, you can catch Courtney counseling her fitness clients, prepping for her next bikini competition, or racing off to explore with her husband.

Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only and is not meant as medical advice, nor is it to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Please consult your physician before starting or changing your diet or exercise program. Any use of this information is at the sole discretion and responsibility of the user.