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

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 Workout 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
2.3K Comments
Garrett
Posted on: Wed, 06/26/2024 - 10:44

Hello,

Is it suggested to increase weight from set to set? Or Is it better to try to find a single weight (progressing by week of course) that will properly work you for the sets/reps listed?

Thanks!

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 06/26/2024 - 20:10

Hi Garrett, thank you for reading M&S!

Either approach would work, but I suggest trying to increase weight from set to set. When you get to the top set, try to do one more rep than you did last time. Once you can do three reps more than what is listed, you can move up weights next time.

Paul
Posted on: Fri, 06/21/2024 - 23:20

I’m going to switch out Front squats to Kettlebell squats and no leg press so I am going to swap out for Bulgarian Split Squats. Any thougnts?

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2024 - 06:06

Go for it, Paul. I see no issues.

Vasilis
Posted on: Thu, 06/20/2024 - 15:15

This program looks very interesting. I'll start it next week.
My question is, because I do boxing training 3 times per week should I do these workouts the same days with boxing (and if yes, should I do them straight before or after boxing or before/after some hours of boxing) so i'll have 3 days per week will totally rest or should I do it different days from boxing?
And finally what's your recommendation for what my training week it should looks like (with boxing and gym)

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2024 - 05:55

Hi Vasilis, I would suggest doing the boxing after weights on the lower body training days and on one off day a week. As for what a training week would look like, try this out.

Day 1: Upper Power
Day 2: Lower Power, Boxing
Day 3: Off
Day 4: Upper Hypertrophy
Day 5: Lower Hypertrophy, Boxing
Day 6: Off
Day 7: Boxing

Zach
Posted on: Tue, 06/18/2024 - 20:55

Hey! Is there any modifciation that can be made to focus more on building my upper body. I've been going for 2 weeks now. Most of my strength is in my legs due to my job, and would like to build my upper body more than legs until I can balance balance myself out a bit better! Or would just sticking with the program as is balance me out eventually?
For reference I'm male, 5'11, 168lbs.
It's just frustrating being able to work steady and hard with higher weights on my legs, and having to go empty bar for some of my upper body work.

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 06/20/2024 - 08:20

Hi Zach, I would actually suggest simply backing off the leg work and leaving the upper body work as it is for at least four weeks. If nothing changes after that, then you could consider adding more.

Andy
Posted on: Sat, 06/15/2024 - 06:31

Hi I can't front squat as I have ra and haven't the dexterity in my joints what could I swap this for I only have a barbell and dumbbells as usual garage gym so only rack bench no machines. And can I replace lunges for split squats. Thank you great program by the way.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 06/18/2024 - 08:24

Hi Andy, have you tried Zercher squats, or do those affect you the same way? You can replace the lunges for split squats if you like.

Glad you like the program. Let us know how it goes for you. Thanks for reading M&S!

Musharaf
Posted on: Sun, 06/09/2024 - 19:57

I am gonna start this Program! One problem, I dont have leg press machine in our gym. Can you give me an alternative for that? Thank you!

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 06/14/2024 - 08:15

What leg machines do you have, Musharaf? I want to make the best choices possible for you.

Kacper
Posted on: Fri, 06/07/2024 - 08:48

Hello. I just started the plan and i love it. But i have a question, with what exercise i can replace Calf Press?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 06/14/2024 - 07:52

What equipment do you have access to, Kacper? I want to make the best suggestions possible for you.

Nate
Posted on: Wed, 05/29/2024 - 20:31

How much rest would you recommend between sets? Would it be different for the Power vs Hypertrophy days?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 05/30/2024 - 08:43

Hi Nate, my personal recommendation would be 2-3 minutes on Power and 60-90 seconds on Hypertrophy. Hope this helps!

Isreal
Posted on: Sat, 05/25/2024 - 17:57

Couldn’t skip rest day due to busy schedule and just do all 4 days in a row?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/28/2024 - 08:50

If you have experience training hard, then you could do that, but I suggest taking two days off to recover if you do, Isreal.

Tiago Alves
Posted on: Sat, 05/25/2024 - 17:01

definitely gonna do this workout!! Im not able do to leg extension because of my knee, how can i replace this especific exercise?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/28/2024 - 08:49

Any other restriction on that knee, and are you training in a gym or at home?

Ryan
Posted on: Sat, 05/25/2024 - 14:10

Hey, I just finished the 12 Week Fat Destroyer program and was looking into this as my next routine, but would also like to continue with some sort of cardio training as well. Is there a particular cardio routine you would recommend to supplement this program? Something I could do on off days or after the exercises?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/28/2024 - 08:49

Hey Ryan, I hope the Fat Destroyer program served you well. If strength is now a priority, then I would stick with steady state cardio after the training for 20-30 minutes. On the off days, you could do a 20-30 minute walk in the morning. I think this would help you without impacting your recovery from the weights. Good luck, and thanks for being a part of the M&S community!

Mauz
Posted on: Sun, 05/19/2024 - 18:23

Hey there,
I have some questions,
1. Can I add shrunk, on day 1,
2. Can I replace Barbell Lung by One Leg Dumbbell Squat.
3. Can I replace Bent Over Row by T-Bar Row
4. I can’t get good results on Incline Barbell Bench Press and Overhead Press, what to do?

Thank you!

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 05/23/2024 - 08:42

Hi Mauz,

1. I am guessing this is supposed to be "shrugs." If so, then yes.
2. I see no problem with that change.
3. Again, yes.
4. Please defined what good results are to you and what you are doing now. That would help me answer this one for you better.

Mauz
Posted on: Thu, 05/30/2024 - 14:06

Thank you so much for your reply.
I have found this program, as the best program that suits me and I make every week a great positive change on my performance. I am adding 2.5 Kg every week, to my exercise.
The only I am not adding 2.5 kg every week is for Incline Barbell Bench Press and Overhead Press exercises.

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 05/30/2024 - 19:31

Understood. We all have weak points, and it appears that pushing may be it for you in this particular case. You can either have a spotter assist you through those reps or change to other versions like dumbbells or machines. That may be all you need.

Ryan
Posted on: Sat, 05/11/2024 - 13:27

Been running this program for a few weeks and really enjoying it! 2 questions though:

1. When you see 3-4 sets listed, should you shoot for 4 sets every single time? Or should I be aiming for 3 quality sets and throw in a fourth if I’m not gassed?

2. How essential is exercise order? For instance, if I’m coming up on Incline Bench but all of the benches are being used, should I wait until one opens or am I good to jump ahead to the next movement and come back when a bench opens up?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 05/23/2024 - 08:40

Hi Ryan,

1. Three great sets is the goal, but if you finish and have that fourth in you, go for it!

2. On this one, exercise order is important, but not all gyms are set up the same, and they can be busy. So, if you need to make a swap to stay consistent, go for that too. Just keep in mind you may not be as strong on the exercise you put off until later in the session because you did something else first.

Best of luck, and thank you for reading M&S!

Akshat
Posted on: Sat, 04/20/2024 - 03:13

Hi

Thank you for sharing this program. I just completed the "https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/12-week-fat-destroyer" and plan to take this on as my next workout regime.

I have had lower back issues for past 3 years and have pulled by back bad 3 times in last 3 years and had to go for PT each time. The 3rd pull happened 6 months ago while performing the 1st rep of a 225 pound deadlift. I was doing it just fine for 3 weeks slowly progressing till the pull happened and ever since have been scared doing it again. What would you recommend as a substitute for Deadlifts? Even in the previous program I had substituted "Stiff Leg Deadlifts" with "Back Hyperextensions". OR would you suggest I should give Deadlifts another try?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 04/25/2024 - 18:10

Hey there, Akshat. I would skip the deadlifts for now and talk to your doctor to make sure it isn't anything serious. If you're not feeling anything during the top half of the movement, you could do rack pulls.

Akshat Sonthalia
Posted on: Tue, 04/30/2024 - 17:46

Thanks, Roger for the response. It is not serious but a mechanical issue with my lumbar spine. I plan to do kettlebell Swings as an alternative to Deadlifts and maybe pick up Rack Pulls in my next plan!

steve L.
Posted on: Fri, 04/19/2024 - 01:27

I work on shifts that are 4 days on, 4 days off, and i can only workout on my days off (consecutive days).
Will this program work for me? if not, which one do you recommend?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 04/25/2024 - 18:01

How long have you been training, Steve? I want to provide the best answer possible based on your schedule if we need to find a new program for you.

Steve L.
Posted on: Wed, 05/01/2024 - 13:40

Hi, for about 3 months. I’ve been making a upper lower routine on days off and resting on works days

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 05/13/2024 - 20:40

I think training with a plan like this for four days in a row at your experience may be slightly overkill. I would suggest cutting one set out of each exercise so you have less volume if you have no other alternative. At least you won't put the body through such an intense toll until you get more advanced.

Ziya
Posted on: Fri, 04/12/2024 - 10:25

Hi and thank you for this workout program!

What is the point of Incline Bench Press and Lat Puldown on Upper Power day? There must be a reason to include additional exercises with hypertrophy range reps during power day

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 04/13/2024 - 07:48

They serve as assistant exercises that can help you improve on the bigger lifts. You don't need to go with singles on these type of movments, but pushing yourself to go with more weight for low reps can serve the purpose of getting stronger.

fendi
Posted on: Sun, 04/07/2024 - 00:29

Hi bro, have a lil question
why day 5 have both exercise?
Seated Calf Raise
Calf Press

i mean both is same target right? should we do both or choose 1? cmiiw

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 04/07/2024 - 08:17

Hey Fendi, thanks for choosing M&S! They actually do NOT have the same target. There are three parts of the calf - the soleus, which is activated when the knee is bent (seated calf raise). The gastrocnemius is the part you see when you flex the calf, and it is hit with straight leg movements (calf press). There is also the tibialis, and that is the front of the lower leg around your shin. There are machines to target that area, but they aren't very common in gyms. This workout at least hits two of the three.

Hope this helps!

Greg
Posted on: Thu, 04/04/2024 - 11:24

I was thinking of adding dips and chin ups to day 1 upper. For day 2 lower adding hanging leg raises. For day 3 upper adding hammer curls and bench dips. For day 4 lower adding bulgarian squats. Would you consider this to be beneficial?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 04/05/2024 - 06:06

It could be, Greg. Give it a go!

Derrick
Posted on: Sat, 03/09/2024 - 16:29

I have a question about four-day workouts. I am a 45/male, intermediate lifter. I can ONLY workout fours days a week and, unfortunately, they must be four consecutive days. How can I properly program for that with hypertrophy and proper rest for each muscle group?
Thank you so much in advance!

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/09/2024 - 20:02

Hey Derrick, I can see why this is a concern, but it really doesn't have to be. As long as you make those four workouts count and make the most out of the recovery both after training and on the days off, you should see results. Alternating muscle groups can help you provide rest for each muscle group. So, don't do something like chest and shoulders followed by arms. Then, the triceps are doing a lot of work in a row. A split I used to use was push, pull, legs, arms, then the days off. The arm workout wasn't as taxing, so the impact wasn't as much after a day like legs. Hope this helps you.

Derrick
Posted on: Sun, 03/10/2024 - 11:29

Thank you so much, Roger. This was very helpful. I hadn't considered the Push, Pull, Legs, Arms. I just wrote a routine around that and it's pretty nice. My only concern is this: will once a week for each muscle group be enough for growth? Maybe I can do some difficult variations of bodyweight moves (Archer push-ups, Pistol squats) at home on my middle rest to make up for it?

Thank you so much,
Derrick

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 03/20/2024 - 20:56

I personally believe if you make the most out of those sessions, once a week will be fine. However, the bodyweight movements can help without risking overtraining. Do it if you like.

icemike
Posted on: Sat, 03/02/2024 - 16:43

I am trying to start a hypertrophy program at home, but at the time I only have an Inspire SF3 cable machine with a smith bar and a few dumbbells. How can I switch out these exercises to perform them with a smith bar and cable machine. Or is it possible to have a hypertrophy program with a cable machine and smith bar?

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/09/2024 - 19:59

You can definitely have a hypertrophy program with cables and a Smith Machine. Resistance is resistance at the end of the day. Go to our Exercises section and find movements you can do with what you got and make the appropriate switches. Hope this helps.

Sam
Posted on: Thu, 02/29/2024 - 04:20

I have ran this program for five weeks and I like it so far. Have been able to increase weight almost every week for most of the exercises.

But I just hit a Barbell Bench Press plateau now, only managing 2-3 reps per set (goal of 3x5). Should I add some exercises to help Barbell Bench Press, if I want to progress that lift? Maybe to Upper Hypertrophy day?

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/09/2024 - 19:57

Hi Sam, I actually suggest scaling the weight back so you get the three sets of five. Taking the step back now will help you take two more forward later.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 02/27/2024 - 18:47

Akash asked. "I'm going to the gym for a month. I can lift 10kg for shoulder press, 5kg for lateral rises,15kg for shrugs, and 40kg for deadlift. this is the progress I have made so far(i know it's still nothing) and I completed that 4-week program. I found this site when looking for a new hypertrophy program to continue. Would you recommend me to go with this or may i have any suggestions from your side?(You can consider me as an intermediate-level gym experienced).
Thank You!

Akash, this program would be solid for you. Also, unfortunately, I can't approve comments with external links, which is why your comment was not approved. However, I wanted to answer your question, so I did it this way. As long as you don't share outside links going forward, feel free to ask more questions if you like. We appreciate you reading M&S!