Get in the best shape of your life over the course of the next 12 weeks by using the best full body workout routine for women! Read on and learn more!
Workout Summary
  • Main Goal
    Lose Fat
  • Workout Type
    Full Body
  • Training Level
    Beginner
  • Program Duration10 weeks
  • Days Per Week
    4
  • Time Per Workout60-90 minutes
  • Equipment Required
    Bands, Barbell, Bodyweight, Cables, Dumbbells, EZ Bar, Exercise Ball, Machines
  • Target Gender Female
  • Recommended Supps
  • Workout PDF Download Workout

Workout Description

When it comes to women’s specific weight training, full body workouts make a lot of sense.

For one, women seem to have an accelerated recovery rate when compared to their male counterparts. Some of which can be explained by their relative intensity levels, natural muscle distribution, favorable mobility, and hormone profile.

All that, and let’s be real for second, women are tougher than men.

Reason number two, and as a result of reason number one, the increased training frequency leads to better muscle tone, strength, and leaner physiques.

So, if that sounds like something you’re personally interested in keep reading.

Outlined below is the best full body workout program for most (healthy) women.

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The course will teach you how your body loses fat, how to utilize workout plans on our website to maximize fat loss, how to eat for fat loss, how to supplement to lose body fat and how to track your progress.

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Full Body Workouts for Women

Outlined below are 4 full body workouts perfect for women looking to build lean muscle, lose fat, and increase strength.

As written, the program can be performed in an every other day fashion where you rotate the workouts each day you go to the gym.

Alternatively, you can perform the workouts on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday (or in a 2 days on/1 day off fashion).

Each workout is broken up into a primary workout. These are the exercises that are necessary to perform on that training day. For your rest periods, you’ll want to rest anywhere between 45-90 seconds. For larger lifts, such as squats, you may want to take the full 90 seconds.

After the primary workout on each day is an additional optional workout you can perform immediately after your primary full body workout. These additional workouts isolate the glutes, core, and arms. For your rest periods with these exercises, limit them to 30 seconds.

The reason for the two glute isolation workouts is due to the common goal among women to grow their glutes. This is best achieved through training the glutes at least 4 times per week, with two of the glute workouts being isolated-focus with higher repetitions.

Any of these additional bonus workouts can be altered in any way that best fits your own individual goals.

Women’s Full Body Workout 1

Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 4 6-8
Leg Press 3 10-15
Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 3 8-12 Each
Overhead Press 4 8
One Arm Dumbbell Row 4 6-8
Lat Pull Down 3 8-12
Optional Additional Exercises 1
Exercise Sets Reps
Hyperextension 3 15-20
Single Leg Glute Bridge 3 10-15 Each
Mini Band Hip Thruster 3 15

Women’s Full Body Workout 2

Exercise Sets Reps
Goblet Squat 3 12-15
Dumbbell Stiff Legged Deadlift 3 10-12
Lateral Lunge 3 12 Each
Dumbbell Bench Press 3 8-10
(Assisted) Pull Up 3 Max
Inverted Row 3 Max
Optional Additional Exercises 2
Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Curl 3 12
Rope Pressdown 3 12
EZ Bar Curl 3 12
EZ Bar Overhead Extension 3 12

Women’s Full Body Workout 3

Exercise Sets Reps
Sumo Deadlift 4 6-8
Hip Thrust 4 6-8
Barbell Row 4 6-8
Seated Dumbbell Press 3 8-12
Lateral Raise 3 10-12
Push Up 3 Max
Optional Additional Exercises 3
Exercise Sets Reps
Plank 3 Max Time
Exercise Ball Crunch 3 20
Hanging Leg Raise 3 12-15

Women’s Full Body Workout 4

Exercise Sets Reps
Plie Squat 3 12-15
Dumbbell Rear Lunge 3 12-15
Landmine Romanian Deadlift 3 12-15
T-Bar Row 4 8-12
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3 12-15
Cable Face Pull 3 15-20
Optional Additional Exercises 4
Exercise Sets Reps
Frog Pumps 3 20-25
Glute Kick Back 3 15 Each
Adduction Machine (or Banded) 3 12
Abduction Machine (or Banded) 3 12

Conclusion

The above workout is a great full body workout for women that can be used regardless of your goal.

The set up of the program allows you to maximize your results in the gym - whether you are looking to build lean muscle, burn fat, increase your strength, or a combination of all of those goals.

The workout can be altered in any way necessary to fit your goals and the availability of equipment you have at your gym.

If you have any additional questions about the program, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!

230 Comments
Tasha King
Posted on: Wed, 07/03/2024 - 12:30

Hi, I am beginning to overthink which workout would be best suited for me. I am hoping you can help me by giving me some advice. I consider myself an intermediate level when it comes to the gym. Currently, I strength train 3 - 4/week. I am 5'2" and 130lbs, 42 yr old female. My goal is to have more muscle definition in my arms. I have always felt like I've had thicker arms and would like to tone them down. I also want to grow my glutes and legs. My question is, should I do a full body strength training workout or should I do a split workout? Realistically, 4 times/week is the most that I can guarantee I can get a workout in. So, I am looking for a strength training workout that will fit those desires. Thank you!

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 07/08/2024 - 08:10

Hi Tasha, thank you for reading M&S!

In your case, I think a split would be best because you can devote more time and energy into those glutes and legs while minimizing the impact on your arms. We have a few options for you to consider at this link. If you find one you like, let me know by following up there, and we can see how you could maximize your potential to reach those goals.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-choose-your-next-train...

Tasha King
Posted on: Mon, 07/08/2024 - 09:38

Hi Roger,

I took a look at the link you shared. I like the looks of P.H.U.L and the Machine Only: 4 Day Split workout as well. I do like to incorporate dumbbells and free weights too. Also, after reading the article in the link, I've realized that the 4 main goals in working out for me are:

#1 - Lose Fat
#2 - Build Muscle
#3 - Increase Strength
#4 - Improve Endurance

With that being said, which 4 day split do you think would be best for my goals? Just as a refresher, I do consider myself intermediate when it comes to working out. I would like to gain in my glutes and legs and slim down in my arms.

Thank you very much for all of your help! I really love this website! It is the most helpful one that I have ever come across and I constantly share it with others who ask what my workout routine is.

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 07/11/2024 - 05:55

Hey Tasha, we appreciate you being here.

I would start with the Machine Only split, then swap it for the PHUL later on. You may find that the machine workout helps with the glutes and legs enough that you don't need PHUL at all, but if you start with PHUL, then your arms may not slim down. That is how I would do it. Regardless of what you choose, keep us posted on how you're doing along the way!

Andrea
Posted on: Thu, 06/27/2024 - 10:15

Hi, I know that we don’t strictly have to do 4 full body workouts a week like the program says, but would 3x a week still work? I have heard that we should stick to 3x a week for better recovery.

And just for some clarification, losing fat and building/maintaining muscles simultaneously is possible with this program right?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 06/27/2024 - 15:39

Hi Andrea, you can do three if you like, but I can't guarantee you can see the same results.

As for losing fat and building muscle simultaneously, that depends on the person. If you are a beginner that is new to training, then yes, it can be done to an extent. You won't lose 20 pounds of fat and put on 20 of muscle in its place, but you can certainly get leaner while adding a few pounds to your frame.

Now, if you have been working out for a while and your body is used to the strain of lifting, then it will be more of a challenge. In this case, I would suggest picking a lane and going all out on that.

Andrea
Posted on: Thu, 06/27/2024 - 19:01

Thanks for letting me know! My goal is to actually lose 20 pounds of fat in the next 2-3 months and I used to do lots of lifting and am happy with how much muscles I have. Just need to lower fat%. That would be bit more straight forward right?

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Roger
Posted on: Fri, 06/28/2024 - 04:56

It is and I think this program can help you do just that. Just make sure the nutrition, cardio, and recovery are all on point as well. Keep us posted on how you're doing.

Tasha King
Posted on: Mon, 06/24/2024 - 13:02

Hi! Just curious, if I do this full body workout 3x a week and add in 1 day of the toning arms workout and 1 day of the glute workout, would that be too much on my muscles? Should I go lighter weights, higher reps if I do add those days in? Would I be doing them a disservice? Thank you!

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Roger
Posted on: Wed, 06/26/2024 - 19:36

Hi Tasha, I think you could do this. As long as you feel challenged without having to do a lot of volume, you should be fine.

Tasha King
Posted on: Mon, 07/01/2024 - 11:56

Thanks!

Tasha King
Posted on: Mon, 06/17/2024 - 11:30

Hi! I was wondering if I could do this routine Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays with Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays off? Would it still be as effective? Working out on the weekends is sometimes hard for me to get scheduled in.
TIA!

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 06/18/2024 - 08:47

I believe that would be just fine, Tasha. Go for it!

Tasha King
Posted on: Tue, 06/18/2024 - 09:07

Thank you!

Perry
Posted on: Fri, 04/19/2024 - 02:22

Hello, I train boxing 3 days a week and go to the gym in between. Would it be too much to incorporate this workout routine in between? With one rest day; this leaves 3 days of gym (you have 4 workouts listed).

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 04/21/2024 - 19:59

Hi Perry, you could do three workouts one week and start the next week with the fourth workout and start the rotation over again. So, as long as you take that one complete day off, I think you would be ok.

Thanks for reading M&S!

Valerie
Posted on: Wed, 04/17/2024 - 22:07

Hello, I am trying to decide between this workout or another one for women on this website. The other one has dedicated legs day, etc. This one mixes up lower and upper body. Can you tell me why choose one over the other? Thanks.

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 04/18/2024 - 05:38

Hi Valerie, we have a lot of workouts here. Mind sharing the other one you're thinking about so I can compare them? I also would like to know what your goals are. That could be a factor as well. Thanks for choosing M&S!

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/28/2024 - 09:09

Hi Valerie, in my opinion, your first method would be best. You are using the first two sets to prepare for the final one, which is the one you should give all you got. That is the way I would do it. Good luck, and thank you for reading M&S!

Valerie
Posted on: Mon, 05/27/2024 - 18:31

I've read different answers for this. What do you think? Should each set progress in weight and decrease in reps? For example, after I warm up I plan to do 3 sets of bicep curls. The first set is 12 reps of 15 pounds; the 2nd set is 10 reps of 20 pounds; and then 3rd set is very hard maybe 6 reps of 20 pounds. Is that correct? Or do I warm up and do the heaviest weight first and the go lighter the 2nd set? Thanks.

Valerie
Posted on: Sun, 04/21/2024 - 10:26

Hi. I replied last week but my post doesn’t appear here, so thought I’d try again. The other workout I am looking at here is Women’s 12 week. On that workout each training day focuses on a part of the body, for example back and shoulders. This 10 week total body mixes upper and lower on each training day. What difference does this make? I’m interested in getting stronger and building muscle. I’m not sure if I need to lose fat. Thanks for the advice!

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 04/21/2024 - 19:58

Hi Valerie, I was away for a few days, so apologies. Your message did come through the first time, but you have more info here, and I am answering here.

When it comes to getting stronger and building muscle , focusing on more split-themed routines is best because you devote more specific time and commit more volume to each muscle group. For that reason, I would suggest going with the upper lower split. If you were limited on workout time and wanting to focus on function alone, then the full-body workout would be the better choice. I hope this helps.

Valerie
Posted on: Thu, 03/21/2024 - 09:44

Hello, can you provide a total core workout to supplement this plan? I’m thinking core exercises to add to each of the four days.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 03/26/2024 - 19:34

We have several options for you to choose from at this link.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/abs

Valerie
Posted on: Wed, 04/17/2024 - 21:48

Thanks. Does Muscle and strength offer an app so I can use these workouts and follow them while in the gym?

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Roger
Posted on: Thu, 04/18/2024 - 05:37

At this time, I am afraid not. Perhaps one will come down the road. In the meantime, you can download the PDFs on your device of choice.

Morgan
Posted on: Fri, 03/01/2024 - 09:43

Hey there! I have a few questions… First, do I do the exercises in the order in which they are written? And second, things like the lunges, are the numbers or reps suppose to be per leg or just total? Thank you!!!

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Roger
Posted on: Sat, 03/09/2024 - 20:28

Hi, Morgan. Thank you for reading M&S.

1. Yes, do the exercises in order.

2. The reps for movements like lunges are per leg.

Charlene
Posted on: Sat, 02/24/2024 - 21:33

Ok I love the workout so far. I know how to challenge myself, but there are glute exercises to enlarge the glutes. What are some exercises to help reduce the derrière. I want a smaller one.

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 02/25/2024 - 07:41

Hi Charlene, you can perform very high reps on glute exercises to help reduce size.

Cait
Posted on: Fri, 02/23/2024 - 18:21

Hi can you superset these exercises?

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 02/25/2024 - 07:31

Hi Cait, if you feel you can handle the intensity and your recovery isn't compromised, then you sure can. Hope this helps!

Donna
Posted on: Wed, 12/20/2023 - 12:55

This is so helpful. Thank you so much for making this plan for us. Extremely helpful to newbies like myself.

Katie
Posted on: Fri, 11/17/2023 - 16:04

This has been my FAVORITE workout that has given me amazing results. I am doing it again after taking a couple months off. Can you please suggest another workout that is similar or make a new workout to share?

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 11/28/2023 - 19:03

So glad you've enjoyed and saw results from this, Katie. Thanks for sharing and being a part of the M&S community. We got plenty of options for you to check out at this link.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-choose-your-next-train...

Laurie
Posted on: Tue, 10/31/2023 - 22:02

Looks like a Great workout. I'm looking forward to trying it out. If my schedule only allows me to work out two days a week, can I do workouts one and two for four weeks and then switch to workouts three and four for four weeks?

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 11/13/2023 - 09:40

You can, or you can simply do all four on the days you have available to train. So, you could do the first two on one week, and the others on the next week.

Lisa
Posted on: Sat, 09/09/2023 - 18:56

Hi Josh, I have just turn 60 in but I’ve been training four days a week in my home gym which is pretty much fully equipped for about two years. Just wondering if this program would be suitable for a woman who is gone through menopause.

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 09/25/2023 - 20:09

Hi, Lisa. As long as you're healthy overall, this should be a fine program for you. If you do it, I hope you'll share the results with us. Thanks for reading M&S!

Kat
Posted on: Sun, 08/27/2023 - 21:38

Hii, how much weights should we start off with?

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 08/28/2023 - 09:27

Use weight that you can achieve all sets and reps with proper form. Once you feel comfortable with that, then start pushing yourself to heavier weights. You ultimately should be feeling challenged but still be able to finish. Hope this helps!

Robin M fruth
Posted on: Fri, 07/14/2023 - 14:47

I have a comment. I love what this workout offers! But how would one schedule a weekly plan, Daily Mon-Friday? Im not sure what to do, What goes with what? I am looking to lose fat and build muscle too. Thanks!

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Roger
Posted on: Sun, 07/23/2023 - 09:47

Hi, Robin. If you want to train five days, then take the additional workouts for Days 3 and 4, and combine them into one workout to do on Day 5. You may notice fat loss first before seeing any changes in muscle size, but it will be worth the effort. Hope this helps!

Kay
Posted on: Sun, 06/18/2023 - 13:01

Can you combine the workouts if you only have 2 days to workout?

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 06/19/2023 - 06:39

That is a long time you would be in the gym, so you might need to find a different program. This could help you do that.

https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/how-to-choose-your-next-train...

Patricia
Posted on: Mon, 06/12/2023 - 05:43

Hi! I see that some muscle groups exceed +20 sets per week, which could have dimishing results based on research. For example, quads are about 26 sets each week, and glutes are around 30 or even 40 sets. I keep hearing that this is way too much volume. Do you have any thoughts about it? Thank you!

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Roger
Posted on: Mon, 06/12/2023 - 06:54

If you were to do all those sets in one workout, I would agree. However, since they are broken down over several workouts, your body has a chance to recover in between. In this case, it would not be too much volume. Think of it like a big meal. If you eat it all at once, you're going to feel bad for a while, but if you eat some now, then more later, and the rest later, you still got it all in but without the stomach ache. Hope this helps.

Brandee
Posted on: Wed, 05/17/2023 - 19:14

Hi! Thank you for all the information. I have absolutely no strength in my arms after losing weight and I just want to tone up and get strength. I can barely pick up a the bar that weights go on from the bench press and can’t do a pull up. All the definition I had in my thighs went to jiggly goop after I slacked up when I turned 42 (now to be 44) and I want that back. My push ups are simply the wall ones or the ones from my knees. And advice would be most appreciated.

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Roger
Posted on: Tue, 05/30/2023 - 20:34

Start very slow, celebrate each accomplishment, and view them as bricks on a building. You can't complete it without each one. If you have access to machines, start there and work your way back to the free weights. Eat smart and recover as much as possible. Also, it will appear dumb, but flex your muscles in between sets. Making them contract will help activate them and could help you work them a little more. Good luck, and thanks for reading M&S!

Diana
Posted on: Mon, 05/15/2023 - 15:22

What’s the main difference between this program and the 12 week muscle & strength program in terms of results?