Tank Top Workout: 4 Day Muscle Building Split

Tank Top Workout: 4 Day Muscle Building Split
Sun's out, guns out! Get in prime condition for the warmer months with this tank top workout program so you can hit the beach and pool with confidence!

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, EZ Bar, Machines
Male & Female

Workout Description

Spring is upon us.

Pictures and videos of people heading to the beach are popping up all over social, which can only mean one thing.

The tank is back! And it’s here to stay throughout the summer months (all the way through Labor Day depending on which region of the country you live in).

Wait, you’re not ready to hit the beach/pool in a tank? No worries bro(ette)! We’ve got your new workout plan outlined below.

This workout is a muscle building workout that hits all the muscle groups with a focus on the main muscles needed to optimally fill out a tank top.

We’re going to hit arms, back, and traps twice a week to promote growth so you can look good in your tank, and all the other muscle groups once a week so all your muscles pop when the tank comes off.

Grab yourself a tank, give the workout a shot, check out the FAQs, and leave us your comments/questions below!

Related: Fast Mass Program - The 4 Day Superset Split Workout

Day 1: Back & Biceps
Exercise Sets Reps
1. Deadlift 3 10
2. Pulldown 3 10
3. Dumbbell Row 3 10
4. Preacher Curls 3 10
5. Incline Dumbbell Curls 3 10
Day 2: Shoulder, Chest, Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
1. Seated Dumbbell Press 3 10
2. Dumbbell Bench Press 3 10
3. Incline Dumbbell Press 3 10
4. Lateral Raise 3 10
5a. Pec Dec 3 10
5b. Reverse Pec Dec 3 10
6. Dumbbell Skullcrushers 3 10
7. Dumbbell Shrugs 3 10
Day 3: off/ active recovery / Ab Circuit
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Ab Crunch 3 15
1b. Side Crunch 3 15 per side
1c. Lying Leg Raise 3 12
1d. Russian Twist 3 10 per side
1e. Plank 3 20 secs
Day 4: Legs
Exercise Sets Reps
1. Squat 3 10
2. Reverse Lunge 3 10
3. Hamstring Curls 3 10
4. Leg Press 3 10
5. Calf Raise 3 10
Day 5: Back, Biceps, & Triceps
Exercise Sets Reps
1. Pullup 3 10
2. Seated Row 3 10
3. Dumbbell Pullover 3 10
4a. Hammer Curl 3 10
4b. Tricep Overhead Extension 3 10
5a. Cable Curls 3 10
5b. Tricep Pushdown 3 10
6. Dumbbell Shrugs 3 10
Day 6 & 7: Off/ Active Recovery/ Ab Circuit
Exercise Sets Reps
1a. Ab Crunch 3 15
1b. Side Crunch 3 15 per side
1c. Lying Leg Raise 3 12
1d. Russian Twist 3 10 per side
1e. Plank 3 20 secs


How long should I run this program?

As long as you want really (min 6 weeks). You’re more than welcome to run it throughout the summer if you like (or longer), or you can change things up if your goals change between now and then.

Perform the program for 6 weeks before taking a week to deload or to perform an active recovery routine. Doing so should give you plenty of time away from the gym to enjoy the spring/summer weather and vacation months.

Once the week is over, hit the gym for another round of this routine.

How should I progress with this program?

So, you’re going to perform the listed exercise using the same weight on each set for that exercise throughout this program. Each week add an additional set to each exercise.

Once you’ve finished a week where each exercise has 5 sets, the following week drop back down to 3 sets and increase the weight used on each exercise by 5 pounds.

How long should I rest in between sets?

Aim to keep rest periods between 30-90 seconds. You’ll be able to recover quicker from some exercises, so whenever you’re ready to go, go for it!

On the weeks you’re doing 3 sets per exercise, try to keep the rest closer to 30 seconds. On the weeks you’re doing 5 sets, you might need to take the full 90 seconds on the latter sets as you fatigue.

M&S Female Athlete Performing Cable Curls

Do you have a diet plan for this workout plan?

Not one in particular, but you should check out our BMR calculator here to get your maintenance calorie needs.

Once you have those, add in ~250-500 calories on top of that to build lean muscle.

If you’re not at the body fat percentage level you want to be going into summer, subtract ~250-500 calories from your maintenance and aim to eat that many calories daily.

Once you’ve hit a good body fat percentage, give reverse dieting a try.

What should I do on "Active Recovery Days"?

Everyone is different and leads different lifestyles, but the main goal is to be active and enjoy the warmer weather.

Related: Playground Workouts - Having Fun While Building Your Body

Head outside and hike, head to the pool and swim, head to the beach and run in the sand. Enjoy life and being shredded in that tank of yours!

Can I substitute or add exercises to this program?

You’re more than welcome to alter this program to better fit your needs or the equipment that is accessible to you.

Although, be careful about adding in additional exercises to this program. Sure the weeks where you only have 3 sets per exercise will seem easy, but the weeks you have 5 sets will be challenging.

About The Author
Josh England is the Web Content Manager at Muscle & Strength. His goal is to provide M&S's readers with the most relevant fitness content available.

6 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Tue, 03/14/2017 - 21:57

Do I use same weight between each exercise. Because on some exercise I can lift more but on other I can't follow that same.

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Wed, 03/15/2017 - 09:01

Hi Zack!

Good question, I didn't explain that very well. You use different weight exercise to exercise, but the same weight for each set for a given exercise.

Hope this helps! Let me know what you think of the workout if you give it a shot!

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Posted Thu, 03/16/2017 - 13:11

Thanks Josh. I just start doing a program will see how it goes.

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Posted Sun, 03/12/2017 - 03:10
sudarshan roy barman

can i replace deadlift with pullups

JoshEngland's picture
Posted Mon, 03/13/2017 - 09:40

Hi Sudarshan,

You could, but I'm not sure I would unless you've been advised not to perform the deadlift by a medical practitioner. The hip hinge is a vital movement pattern and the deadlift is a great mass builder because it involves so many muscle groups. It'd be more beneficial to replace the deadlift with another hip hinge movement. If you're avoiding them because they hurt your back, below is a good resource to read:


Hope this helps!

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Posted Wed, 03/15/2017 - 12:18
sudarshan roy barman

Thanks Josh