- Main GoalBuild Muscle
- Workout TypeSplit
- Training LevelBeginner
- Program Duration8 weeks
- Days Per Week4
- Time Per Workout45-70 minutes
- Equipment RequiredBodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, EZ Bar, Machines
- Target Gender Male & Female
- Recommended Supps
- Workout PDF Download Workout
We continue our series of workouts that can be performed with the equipment available at popular gym chain, Planet Fitness, with an upper/lower split.
If you’re just starting to work out and Planet Fitness is your gym of choice, we recommend beginning with the 3 Day Full Body Planet Fitness Workout. After you’ve finished that program, this program would be the perfect option to perform next.
These workouts were inspired by a lot of you guys.
We noticed a lot of questions coming in on our popular workout routines asking how they could be modified for those working out at Planet Fitness.
So, we thought, why not provide you all with a little bit of a more useful group of workouts?
And now, we’re bringing you the second workout you can do at Planet Fitness.
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The Upper/Lower Planet Fitness Workout
Upper/Lower workout programs are great, because they allow you to hit each muscle group twice per week – and with a little bit more volume than you’d be able to use during a full body workout.
As you probably know, Planet Fitness is known for only having machines and dumbbells. That’s all you really need to get in an efficient workout – especially if you’re still just beginning your fitness journey.
The workout below is a 4 day upper/lower workout program that utilizes only machine, dumbbell, and bodyweight exercises.
Perform the workout program for about 8 weeks – at that point, you can progress to a new workout program.
Planet Fitness Upper Body Workout A
|1. Dumbbell Bench Press||4||8-12|
|2. Machine Chest Fly||3||10-15|
|3. Dumbbell Row||4||8-12|
|4. Lat Pull Down||4||8-12|
|5. Machine Shoulder Press||4||8-12|
|6. Dumbbell Lateral Raise||3||10-15|
|7. Machine Tricep Dip||2||8-12|
|8. Cable Curl||2||10-15|
Planet Fitness Lower Body Workout A
|1. Leg Press||4||8-12|
|2. Dumbbell Stiff Leg Deadlift||4||8-12|
|3. Leg Extension||3||12-15|
|4. Leg Curl||3||12-15|
|5. Machine Glute Kickback||3||12-15|
|6. Standing Calf Raise||3||20|
Planet Fitness Upper Body Workout B
|1. Seated Dumbbell Press||4||8-12|
|2. Cable Face Pull||3||10-15|
|3. Smith Machine Row||4||8-12|
|4. Machine Pull Up||4||8-12|
|5. Incline Dumbbell Press||4||8-12|
|6. Cable Fly||3||10-15|
|7. Dumbbell Curl||2||8-12|
Planet Fitness Lower Body Workout B
|1. Goblet Squat||4||8-12|
|2. Smith Machine Hip Thrust||4||8-12|
|3. Dumbbell Deadlift||4||8-12|
|4. Dumbbell Lunge||3||10-15 Each|
|5. Seated Leg Curl||3||10-15|
|6. Seated Calf Raise||3||20|
Upper/Lower Planet Fitness Workout Summary
No one would disagree that barbell training is a great way to build muscle and strength.
However, the convenience, atmosphere, and price point of Planet Fitness can be too good to pass up. If you decide to start a membership there, ensure you’re getting a good workout in by performing something like the program listed above.
While performing the workout, limit your rest periods between sets to 60-90 seconds after each set and in between exercises.
Abdominal training and cardio can both be added in either the morning of your workouts, after your workouts, on rest days, or a combination of the three depending on your goals.
If you have any questions about the Upper/Lower Planet Fitness Workout, please feel free to leave us a comment in the comments section below and we will answer them.
The Next Workout: 5 Day Body Part Split Planet Fitness Workout
What workout program would you recommend after completing the 8 weeks of this one? Thats is able to be done at planet fitness
This should help. If there are barbell movements in the workout you pick, simply swap them for dumbbells or machine versions.
Can I do stair master after leg day or when would you recommend it? I want to add a little bit of cardio and abs to my workout. Was thinking of doing stair master after leg day and abs after upper body
Upper body cardio such as bag work or battle rope would be better, Eddie. The legs have worked hard enough.
When would you recommend adding lower body cardio and core workouts. I’m more focused on building muscle at the moment but I do want to lose some belly fat as well. Great workout by the way. On my 4th week and I’m loving it
Core workouts you could plug in on whichever days you like, as long as you do the main training first. Lower body cardio you could do after upper body training.
What is the workout schedule? Do you hit Upper A on Monday Anand the lower A on Tuesday? Or take a day off in between workouts
Hi, Bryant. The general schedule would be two days on, one off, two on, one or two off. However, if your schedule is crazy and you need to train three or even all four days in a row, that would be ok. If you train for four in a row, take two off.
If you have years of experience with the gym, how can you make this more advanced/difficult for people with experience in training?
Hey Bryan, pair two up and do supersets, cut rest time in half. On the last working set, do a rest-pause or drop set. There are several ways to make these more challenging. You could actually do the exercises in reverse order. That will be different and interesting.
So I'm about to start my 6th week on this program and I'm enjoying it. Planet Fitness only has dumbbells up to 75lbs, so now that I've pretty much reached 75 on dumbbells for my deadlift, stiffleg deadlifts, and Goblet squats, would it be ok to switch to the Smith Machine?
That would be a good idea, Sean. Congrats on the strength gains!
So, I'm still a novice when it comes to choosing weight for my sets. For example, should I be choosing a weight that I can get through for 4 sets at 12 reps, a weight that I can do at least 8x with the goal being 12, or an average of the two. When do I know it's time to increase the weight?
This is subjective, Sean. In my opinion, I would say go with something you can do for 8 and work up to 12. If strength isn't a priority, then use lighter weight so you can do 12 for all sets. When you can do all the reps without reaching failure, it's definitely time to go up.
I’m having issues with grip strength on my dumbbell lunges. Would split squats on a smith machine be a good alternative while I work up my grip strength, or would you recommend something else?
A Smith Machine would work, Chloe. Or, you could use lifting straps to support your grip while using the dumbbells. Hope either of these will help!
Do you have to do these in order? For example, on upper body, do 1 through 6 in order? Sometimes areas are too crowded or the machines are taken.
Hi, Tasha. Great question! Going through the order as written would be best, but at the end of the day, change the order if needed because of the crowded gym. Getting the workout in is the main priority. Don't let a sequence stop you from training!
I am 67 years old and becoming a serious competitive pickleball player. i just joined planet fitness so i can build/keep muscle mass and ward off the beginning of osteoporosis, and get my upper body in better shape for playing pickleball. I have some kind of arthritis in my knee that keep me from doing anything squatting or bending. So far, I am going every other day, doing a "heart thumper" (stairs or HIIT recumbent bike) for 5 minutes at a high rate, then do 5-6 machines to work on back, shoulders, arms. I mostly wander around and pick a machine that is available. I only want to spend about a half hour each time. Can you help modify this basic routine and suggest which machines i could alternately work on?
I started this plan this week and I like it so far. The gym I’m at didn’t have a glute kickback machine though so I didn’t know an alternative to do for that one. Also I enjoy going to gym and working out and I want to go everyday even if it means I can only do cardio on the rest days. Do you have any recommendations for a good program to go along with this one?
Hey Andrew - you can do glute kickbacks on the cable machine as well. If you aren't able to do that, you can do hip thrusts or glute bridges. As far as rest days, you need to have 1-2 actual rest days per week where you aren't going to the gym.
Hey Josh, quick question...
Do you go up in weight on each set or do you pick a weight and keep it for each set?
Hey Matt - you'll use the same weight for each set.
Thank you for the quick response :)
My last comment was back in August of 2019 after recovering from heart surgery and getting started back. I done 2 months of cardio light exercises mainly re teaching the muscles. In January I hit the gym hard, dedicated 4 days a week to this program and am about to finish 8 weeks. I wish I could show the gains I've made.
What is the rest time between sets? Does it matter?
What days/how often/what kind of cardio should I sprinkle in (HIIT for 15 min, fast walking for 45-60 min, etc)? How about ab work?
My goal is to lose 35ish lbs of fat.
Muscle Mass: 123.6 lbs
I don't typically time my rest periods. Rest as long as needed to recover, then perform your next set.
Perform whichever style of cardio you feel you will be able to be most consistent at performing. The type doesn't particularly matter - Depending on your total weekly exercise.
You can add in abdominal work if you feel it is necessary. For most goals, however, it is not.
How are we supposed to split these workouts? Do we do upper and lower A in the same day for 2 consecutive days and upper and lower B in the same day for 2 consecutive days? For instance, on a Monday, do I do upper A and lower A in the same day?
Perform them on separate days. An example would be:
Mon - Upper
Tue - Lower
Wed - Rest
Thu - Upper
Fri - Lower
Weekend - Rest
Do you man that we take the both plane a and b wich mean 2daysa fore and2days for b
That what do you mean
Perform 1 workout, not both.
Any advice for create a advance 4 days routine for planet fitness?
Most advanced lifters add training days, not special tactics. On some occasions, they may add supersets, bfr, drop sets, etc to increase volume that way, but for the most part, they simply increase training frequency.
The best way to make this program more difficult is to focus on challenging yourself to increase the weight used.
Hope this helps!
Is this a good workout if I am only looking for a lean build?
It'd be great for that goal.
Which days would you recommend to best fit in cardio?
You can perform cardio as often as you feel it's necessary with any weight training program. Off days, mornings, or immediately post workout all work fine.
Hi Josh, I did this program for 8 weeks and the results were great. Thank you very much!
I'm looking for another program to do after this one. My goal is muscle building and I only can go to the gym for 4 days. any suggestion would be appreciated!
With love and respect from Iran
What equipment do you have access to? This one might be a good one to move on to: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/phul-workout
Hello again and Thank you for your respond,
I have access to a full gym with barbells, dumbbells and machines. And by the way I have already done the PHUL program, and it was amazing! Actually my body started it's transformatiom when I sticked to PHUL program.
I gotcha, might be worth doing it again - it's a really good program. I like going through it a couple of times through the year with the goal of improving my numbers from the last time.
Would you recommend completing all sets of each exercise before moving to the next or super setting these exercises?
Yes, that is how I would approach it (completing all of the sets before moving onto the next exercise).
how much progression should someone expect to see in the 8 weeks of doing this program? For example, say I can use 30LB dumbbells for the dumbbell bench press at the beginning, how much should I have progressed during the 8 weeks so that I'm lifting XXLB dumbells for the final week?
Progression will vary by individual. Aim to increase the weight used whenever able to do so during the program. The rest will take care of itself.
Is there a reason you choose machine options for some of these when weights are available (machine shoulder press, cable curl to name a couple)? Aren't free weights generally considered better or are they working something different?
They're just variations. You're more than welcome to tailor the program in whatever way you see fit to meet your individual needs, goals, and preferences.
For Machine Glute Kickbacks, is that 12-15 each side?
Yes, each side.
What days would you recommend doing these, i.e. where should rest days happen? Still working on the 3 day program, but have my eyes on this next!