Power Hypertrophy Upper Lower (P.H.U.L.) Workout

Build both size and strength in this 4 day split based around basic compound movements. Get the best of both worlds with bodybuilding and powerlifting.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Split
Intermediate
12 weeks
4
45-60 minutes
Barbell, Dumbbells, Machines
Male & Female
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Workout Description

Power Hypertrophy Upper Lower (PHUL) Workout

The PHUL workout is based around the basic principles of strength and size.  This 4 day program will allow you to maximize results on both fronts in an easy adaptable routine built off the following principles:

Frequency. Studies have shown muscle protein synthesis (MPS) to be elevated for up to 48 hours after training. That would make it ideal for you to hit each muscle more frequently than a typical once per week split. The PHUL program is designed to hit each muscle group twice within a week.

Compounds. The PHUL program focuses on the big compound movements for optimal progression. While isolation movements are included in this program as well, the main goal is to increase performance on the main lifts, as well as pack on pounds of muscle.

Power. This program uses 2 of it's 4 working days to focus on pure strength training. The key to getting stronger and bigger is to utilize progressive overload and time under tension. These 2 days will see that you'll be able to use more weight on your hypertrophy days.

Hypertrophy. In addition to 2 power days, your other 2 days on the PHUL program will focus on hypertrophy (bodybuilding) style training. This way, not only will you be seeing strength increases but you'll be building size as well.

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PHUL Notes:

  1. Sets and Reps - When first beginning this program it is suggested to start with a lower amount of total volume until you become accustomed to the workload.
  2. Failure - Failure is a tool that should not be abused. All sets should be completed with at least 1 rep "left in the tank." Meaning you should struggle to complete your heavier sets, but not to the point where you're unable to get your goal reps.
  3. Exercise Selection - Main compounds should remain unchanged, however substitutions can be made for like exercises if desired.
  4. Abdominals - Ab work can be done at the end of training or on off days.
PHUL Schedule:
  • Day 1: Upper Power
  • Day 2: Lower Power
  • Day 3: Off
  • Day 4: Upper Hypertrophy
  • Day 5: Lower Hypertrophy
  • Day 6: Off
  • Day 7: Off
Day 1
Upper Power
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Bench Press 3-4 3-5
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3-4 6-10
Bent Over Row 3-4 3-5
Lat Pull Down 3-4 6-10
Overhead Press 2-3 5-8
Barbell Curl 2-3 6-10
Skullcrusher 2-3 6-10
Day 2
Lower Power
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 3-4 3-5
Deadlift 3-4 3-5
Leg Press 3-5 10-15
Leg Curl 3-4 6-10
Calf Exercise 4 6-10
Day 4
Upper Hypertrophy
Exercise Sets Reps
Incline Barbell Bench Press 3-4 8-12
Flat Bench Dumbbell Flye 3-4 8-12
Seated Cable Row 3-4 8-12
One Arm Dumbbell Row 3-4 8-12
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3-4 8-12
Seated Incline Dumbbell Curl 3-4 8-12
Cable Tricep Extension 3-4 8-12
Day 5
Lower Hypertrophy
Exercise Sets Reps
Front Squat 3-4 8-12
Barbell Lunge 3-4 8-12
Leg Extension 3-4 10-15
Leg Curl 3-4 10-15
Seated Calf Raise 3-4 8-12
Calf Press 3-4 8-12

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1.4K Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Sun, 03/15/2020 - 10:33
mus

Absolute beast of a program , I remember doing a 100kg 3 reps with a spot before I started. im now on 4 reps of 120 with no assistance , this is the real deal. Mr Campbell, i salute you

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Posted Mon, 02/24/2020 - 10:09
Arisre

I did the 5day poewrmucleburn workout for 1,5 mom Thursday (great results) and then I had 1,5 month rest because I did not have enough time. Is it OK to start again following this workout ?

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Posted Fri, 07/24/2020 - 10:43
X

I'd say yes, but I'd try this.

Start at a lower weight and start at the lower set/rep's possible. Work your way up to doing the max rep/sets with that workout. When you hit the max the first time switch over to linear progression on the weight. Once you max out your linear progression, then switch back to the programs progression program.

Just a suggestion though, this will let you increase your weight faster in the beginning.

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Posted Sat, 02/22/2020 - 13:10
Falko

Hey,
Makes it sense to add a special arm WO like this (https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/armergency-workout) to this Program?
Due to my work shifts I'm not able to manage each week all of the Days.

Greets from Austria.

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Posted Fri, 02/21/2020 - 17:33
Sam

Love this routine but want to turn this into a 3 day workout. Any tips?!

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Posted Tue, 06/16/2020 - 20:02
X

Just do it without the rest day in between. This will hit each muscle 3x a week, which is the optimal amount. Considering it takes 24-48 hours for protein synthesis to subside and muscle stops being created.

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Posted Wed, 02/19/2020 - 01:06
Phillip

I'm a bit confused. Based on my own research it sounds like in order to build muscle mass you do low reps with high weight and for muscle endurance high reps with lower weight. But this program has the opposite shown. Day 4 and 5 are labeled as hypertrophy with 3-5 sets/8-12 reps, while the first two days are power and have lower sets and reps. Am I missing something or is this an error?

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Posted Fri, 02/21/2020 - 11:16
Caleb

This is plan is correct. Hypertrophy (8-12 reps) builds size and mass while lower reps at a higher weight build strength. No offense, but you research sources may have been nothing short from non-credible. Your interpretation is very common and many people do get this crossed.

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Posted Wed, 02/12/2020 - 16:24
Armando

Can I lose fat with this workout routine?
Rn I’m doing this https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/12-week-fat-destroyer

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Posted Sat, 02/22/2020 - 12:13
Johnathan Oliveira

You can lose fat with any routine.
The question would be is this a good routine to do on a fat loss phase?
I'd say yes, as long as you're pushing yourself and not just going through the motions.

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Posted Sat, 01/25/2020 - 07:50
Zaid Qtaishat

can i add more exercises since there is only one for tri bi and shoulders??

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Posted Sat, 02/22/2020 - 12:16
Johnathan Oliveira

You can, but I don't think that is the point of this routine. There are quite a few cross-over exercises that use tri, bi, and shoulders are secondary muscles and not primer movers. I would recommend to run the program once through and then add a 5th day for identified groups that you want to bring up. On the fifth day, it would be important not to overdue it. You would do 2-3 exercises that would give you a good pump.

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Posted Fri, 01/24/2020 - 06:43
Nadeem

I was in the gym for 6 months, but only intermittently.
is it okay to follow this program?

my in body test:
weight: 85KG
SMM: 37.1 KG
Body Fat Mass: 20.7
PBF: 24.2%

Thanks

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Posted Sat, 01/18/2020 - 18:07
Sam

Hi,
Do you have to do the routines in the order described above? i.e Day 1- Upper Power, Day 2- Lower Power
Also, can you do the workouts on non-consecutive days?

Thanks!

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Posted Tue, 01/14/2020 - 09:46
Niels

Hello,

Nice workout I’ve been doing it for a few months now. I came across this workout after I did a 5x5 workout. My question now is: What workout do you recommend next? I want to gain more muscle (I can eat what I want and train what I want, but i still gain very little)

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Posted Sat, 02/22/2020 - 12:20
Johnathan Oliveira

I'd recommend adding a 5th day.

Pick one or two weak body parts that you want to work on and use the 5th day to train. That day should be all about pump training 10-12, or 12-15, heck even 15-20. As long as your intensity is there you will build muscle. It is important on this day not to completely kill yourself. Your recovery will stab you in the foot if you go to hard and the 5th day.

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Posted Sun, 01/05/2020 - 00:55
Galan

Hey I have been training for a while now, I’d like to know which is the best training for me to build muscle and get BIGGER knowing I have 60 kg and 1,70cm.
Thanks coach

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Posted Fri, 01/03/2020 - 19:01
J

1. How do you determine your start weight?
2. How do you determine progression after adding volume? AKA, how do I know when to add more weight?

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Posted Fri, 01/10/2020 - 02:35
JJ

1. Pick something that allows you to do max reps (12 in this case); with a few spare in the tank. No point lifting heavy from the get-go. Form is important, you can increase weight every week or 2 weeks as long as you hit the max reps with good form.
2. When you've maxed out the reps. Thats when you know the weight is light; add 2.5kgs for the next level and try hitting 3x12 for that. This is the way I've progressed.

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Posted Wed, 01/01/2020 - 01:04
Aniket Dalvi

Hey y'all, I just started this program after the "Total Package". I lifted consistently for 6 months and just joined a new gym yesterday for better equipments. I'm a soccer player and I wanna get lean and strong instead of getting much bulkier. I'm very fast in my sprints and agile and I don't want to lose that. What suggestions do y'all have?

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Posted Mon, 12/02/2019 - 08:03
Jay N

Is it okay to do bent over rows and deadlifts one day after another? I thought this would increase risk of back injury.

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Posted Mon, 11/25/2019 - 13:05
Egemen

That’s really great workout. I have been using this program for 5 weeks. I can see, my strength and muscle mass increases. Sometimes I swap exercises on hypertrophy days. ( sorry for my English)

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Posted Sat, 11/09/2019 - 11:06
Nicolas

I'd like to add some cardio cycling or jogging to this program. But I don't want it to interfere with my legs growth. Would you recommene to add 30min cardio straight at the end of my legs workout or on my rest day 24h after my legs workout ?

Thank you

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Posted Thu, 02/27/2020 - 04:19
John

Hi,
I do HIIT cardio 15-20 min on legday AFTER i have done the legwork routine when i cut, and when i bulk i do cardio on last legday of the week if i feel like im starting to get abit to "bulky"

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Posted Thu, 11/07/2019 - 19:15
John

Heya, Ive been told my routine is crap basically. I was told to pick one I liked, and I stumbled across this. I have to ask, does this work arms too, and shoulders? Thank you.

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Posted Thu, 01/09/2020 - 22:38
Alex

Yes... all the exercises are listed right there. There are plenty of shoulder and arm exercises.

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Posted Mon, 11/04/2019 - 20:32
Arjun K

Hi! Looks like an excellent workout program. Can this be done on 4 consecutive days? I usually hit the gym from Tue-Friday. Or is there any other upper/lower split for 4 consecutive days? Or 3 days?

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Posted Mon, 10/21/2019 - 07:47
Max

Hey, thanks for the article, this will be my next 3 months :)

"All sets should be completed with at least 1 rep "left in the tank."

Do we need to put heavier weights on the first couple set, or is it okay to finish them with 3 or 4 reps "left in the tank ?"

About the rest between series & sets, I read below that it is between 2 and 5 minutes. Does that depends on the strenght / hypertrophy day's, or is it linked with the first question above ?

Thanks for your help !

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Posted Mon, 11/04/2019 - 13:23
Fernando

You should have shorter rest periods while on hypertrophy days, while you should rest longer on your strength days. Hyp: lets say from 30 secs to 1 minute or 1.5 min. And on power days: from 2-3 minutes

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Posted Tue, 10/15/2019 - 16:27
Angel

Is it okay to do only 6 reps on the strength days ? For example the leg curls 4x6 on lower strength day

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Posted Tue, 10/01/2019 - 14:24
Steve

I want ask about the upper power with benchpress it would be 3/4 set with 3-5 reps? It would be using a heaviest load?

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Posted Mon, 10/14/2019 - 19:01
Johnny

Yes. I put heavy enough weight where i can just get the 5 reps. Once i can comfortably do 4 sets of 5 reps with this weight I will than move up in weight. I'm not an expert but following this workout this is what i am doing.

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Posted Tue, 10/01/2019 - 13:56
Fransisco leandrio

Is there some workout can i do in offday?

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Posted Wed, 09/25/2019 - 23:58
Mager

What should be the intensity breakdown?

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Posted Tue, 09/10/2019 - 11:41
Anna

would you recommend some changes for females and what would it be?

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Posted Wed, 08/28/2019 - 23:21
Hazar

Can i add one more day to this program and work out on mainly shoulders and forearms? Also, can I add dips instead of lateral raise on upper hypertrophy days? Because I am thinking adding lateral raise on extra day in which I am going to work shoulders and forearms.

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Posted Tue, 09/03/2019 - 16:14
JoshEngland

Hi Hazar,

Sure, if you feel it's necessary to do so to meet your goals. That's fine.

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Posted Mon, 08/26/2019 - 13:45
mohamed elsayad

Hi, is this program suitable for the skinny fat body type?

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Posted Tue, 09/03/2019 - 16:19
JoshEngland

Hi Mohamed,

This program is suitable for most.

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Posted Tue, 09/03/2019 - 17:42
mohamed elsayad

Thnx..

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Posted Wed, 08/14/2019 - 17:31
Nick

Hey I was wondering if I could switch the incline barbell press on hypotrophy day to a dumbbell flat chest press? I really like it better and was hoping it wouldn’t screw up the routine. Was also wondering if switching the later raises with the overhead press would be okay because most of my strength is depleted by the time I get to it in the power day, so moving it to the second upper day and starting with that would I think benefit me more. Does this work?

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Posted Mon, 08/19/2019 - 20:23
Nick

So does the like mean this is okay? Haha

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Posted Thu, 08/08/2019 - 12:12
Tobias

Please critique my PHUL workout routine. I modified some stuff from the default one and im just wondering what you guys think and if i need some adjustments in the workout. Im looking to gain muscle strength and size

PHUL Workout Program

Day 1
Upper Power:

Barbell Bench Press 3x5
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3x10
Bent Over Row 3x5
Lat Pull Down 3x10
Overhead Press 3x5
Bicep Curl 3x10
Skullcrusher 3x10
Face Pulls 3x10

Day 2
Lower Power:

Squat 3x5
Deadlift 3x5
Hyperextension 2x15
Leg Press 3x10
Leg Extension 3x10
Calf Exercise 4x10

Day 4
Upper Hypertrophy:

Incline Barbell Bench Press 3x10
Machine Chest Fly 3x10
Seated Cable Row 3x10
Chin-Ups 3xF
Dumbbell Shoulder Press 3x10
Seated Incline Dumbbell Curl 3x10
Cable Tricep Extension 3x10

Day 5
Lower Hypertrophy:

Squat 3x5
Deadlift 1x5
Barbell Lunge 3x10
Hyperextension 2x15
Leg Extention 3x10
Seated Calf Raise 3x10
Sandbag Lunge 3x15 steps
Abs exercises 5 minutes

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Posted Fri, 02/28/2020 - 23:03
Jerry Jenkins

Looks awesome to me! My critique would be your lower hypertrophy day looks strenght based. Im keeping the frint squats for quad loading focus and keeping the sets and reps high. I have taken out the curls and replaced with RDL's. I might steal from your other days and ad them to my routine however.

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Posted Tue, 07/23/2019 - 16:59
Lindi

Hello guys.
I'm 19, 175 cm tall and 60.3 kg,
Can anybody tell me if this plan is a good plan for me, I've already been working out for 3-4 months periodically, I haven't been in Gym since February.
I started gym today so I'm looking for a plan to gain some muscles and power.

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Posted Sun, 07/21/2019 - 21:29
Matthew White

Hi Josh,
What could exercise could I use to supplement Skullcrusher ? And also what exercise could I use to supplement lat pull down

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Posted Mon, 07/22/2019 - 11:43
JoshEngland

Hi Matthew,

Depends... what're your reasons for substituting the exercises?

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Posted Sun, 07/14/2019 - 17:32
Lisa

Hi, I've been lifting for awhile 5-6x a week using muscle group splits (chest/shoulders, back/arms, legs/core), hypertrophy focused. I've just been doing my own thing and not following a progressive, proven program. I'm getting great results but think I should move to a proven program. I like the way PHUL looks, but my current routine is more than PHUL calls for--more total exercises, more sets, etc. I assume there's a good reason for the way PHUL is written and I probably need more rest/recovery than I'm getting now. My question is will I lose my progress by switching to only 4 days and doing less overall in the gym? Lifting heavier has made awesome changes in my physique, so I'm just worried about changing my routine. Thanks for your thoughts on this.

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Posted Sat, 12/28/2019 - 18:40
Yaa-jonirs

Never change a winning concept. I did and arter 5-6 years I wish I didnt.

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Posted Wed, 07/10/2019 - 13:20
Mads Huke Hjelmeland

I am one month in and my progress on my compounds on upper day have seemed to stall, not progressing in weights, not even reps. However my other exercise seems to progress decently, any tips?