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

1.4K Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Sat, 09/19/2020 - 04:55
Alawi

what's the strategy of weight increasing in both power and hypertrophy ?

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:22
Abigail_M&S

Hi Alawi - the weights you choose should be based on what weight you can move safely & with the correct form for the given number of reps. You can increase as you feel fit.

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Posted Fri, 09/18/2020 - 05:51
Joost

The Barbell Lunge, can it be replaced with dumbbell lunges? Als do I have to see it like this: i.e. Lunge 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps per leg?

Greetz from the Netherlands

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Posted Wed, 09/16/2020 - 14:02
Alawi

Hi All, When I can increase weight ?
Also for example in power day my weight 50kg and in the hypertrophy 30 kg.. after increasing how it should be ?

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:02
Abigail_M&S

Hey Alawi - the weights you choose should be based on what weight you can move safely & with the correct form for the given number of reps. You can increase as you feel fit.

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Posted Mon, 09/14/2020 - 13:03
Alon Bochner

Hi,
is Strength focused workouts important for Hypertrophy?
I was doing a full body workout for a year now and never did rep ranges this low (5-8).
So I would be happy if you will explain me about it.

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:20
Abigail_M&S

Hi Alon - this specific workout routine focuses on both strength and hypertrophy. The movements with lower reps focus on strength, and the movements with higher reps focus on hypertrophy.

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Posted Sun, 09/13/2020 - 10:37
Zach

Do you have any suggestions as to what I should be doing with my diet along with this?

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Posted Tue, 09/22/2020 - 15:13
Abigail_M&S

Hey Zach - your diet will depend on your lifestyle and goals. Check out our Diet Plans page to learn more about different diets: https://www.muscleandstrength.com/diet-plans

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Posted Thu, 09/10/2020 - 19:12
Josh Kyle Quipit

Would it be all right if I were to do flat bench presses during the upper hypertrophy workout?

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Posted Sun, 09/13/2020 - 20:49
Marina_M&S

Kyle - are you thinking of adding it in addition to the prescribed workout? Or as a substitution for another exercise.

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Posted Thu, 09/10/2020 - 05:31
Leonard

Hey, I love this workout. but i like to do dips and pull ups during my workouts aswell. Where should I slot these in or shouls they replace any other exercises.

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Posted Thu, 09/10/2020 - 11:54
Marina_M&S

Leonard - you can slot in pull ups on your Upper Power day.

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Posted Tue, 09/08/2020 - 15:29
Hakan

Hi
So except some of them, 10 is the key number for all reps and 3-4 is for all sets.. For both power and hypertrophy , how come ??

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:19
Abigail_M&S

Hi Hakan - Power days feature strength movements with lower reps and heavier weight as well a few accessory movements. Hypertrophy days feature more movements at higher rep schemes.

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Posted Sat, 09/26/2020 - 12:56
Hakan

I fo. Change the program and inform us correct

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Posted Mon, 09/07/2020 - 14:46
Joseph

Hi,
Please I have a work schedule that doesn't allow me come to the gym two days in a row, I.e. my workout days are Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday. Please can I use this routine in that order, or must I follow the Day 1,Day 2 then rest in the above?

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Posted Wed, 09/09/2020 - 12:38
Marina_M&S

Joseph - that should be fine.

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Posted Thu, 08/27/2020 - 02:07
StevenH

Hi,

As the set range is 3-4, should I be aiming to start with 3 sets then aim to increase to 4 over time? Thanks.

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 14:53
Abigail_M&S

Hey Steven, you're correct! It's best to start the program with 3 sets for the 1st week and then move up to 4 sets as you see fit.

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Posted Wed, 08/26/2020 - 09:23
Christa

Where would be a good place to add accessory work (like seated abductions/Bulgarian splits)?? Can any of these be traded out for compound moves with glute emphasis, like trading a dead lift for a hip thrust?

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:07
Abigail_M&S

Hi Christa - it is best to follow the program as written. If you still wish to add additional lower body accessory work, you can do so on the lower hypertrophy day.

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Posted Tue, 08/25/2020 - 14:14
Egemen

Hello. Is it okay to add cardio and abs day to this program?

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Posted Wed, 08/26/2020 - 09:54
Mike_M&S

Absolutely.

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Posted Wed, 08/26/2020 - 09:55
Egemen

Thanks for reply !

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Posted Fri, 08/21/2020 - 07:41
Mohamed

Which supplements do you recommend that can maxmize gainzzzz ?

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Posted Wed, 08/19/2020 - 22:24
Kartlos

Can I use some of the reps for arms to target shoulders for example ? My arms are in good shape and would like to train shoulder as regularly as back & chest.

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:27
Abigail_M&S

Hi Kartlos - if you are wishing to swap a one or two arm exercises for shoulder exercises, it would be best to do so on the Upper Hypertrophy day.

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Posted Wed, 08/19/2020 - 16:08
Dino

Hello.i started doing this program but i don't see a specific upper back exercise.

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Posted Mon, 09/21/2020 - 15:38
Abigail_M&S

Hi Dino - the seated cable row targets the mid to upper back if using the V-shaped cable attachment.

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Posted Wed, 08/12/2020 - 09:47
Tony

Hi Yoshi,

awesome workout. One Question. Isn't it a bit much putty deadlift right after squats? I struggle with the load to be honest. I'm currently at about 90kg squats and 120kg Deadlift but I struggle. I can't progress much after that.

What about cardio? How to incoorperate cardio in it?

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Posted Thu, 08/13/2020 - 10:30
Yoshi

Hey Tony

Try out different stances for each. Using a narrow, feet pointed forward, stance on squats will seriously target your quads. While switching to sumo deadlift will target more of your hamstrings & glutes. This will help split up your energy between the 2 a little more.

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Posted Fri, 09/25/2020 - 16:39
Abigail_M&S

Hey Tony - you could add in cardio after the workout if you want. I would start out with 2 days of cardio and go up from there depending on how your body feels and responds.

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Posted Tue, 08/25/2020 - 04:33
Tony

Thank you!

Another Question:

I think my stamina is too low. How can I add cardio to this plan? When do you think this is good?

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Posted Fri, 08/07/2020 - 05:08
Conor

What is the reason for the exercises changing between the power and hypertrophy days?
E.g. Why is it incline dumbbell bench press on on power day but incline barbell bench press on hypertrophy day?

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:07
Yoshi

Hey Conor

This change is to help prevent lagging areas in your muscles. With the pec example, incline DB (power) will help your upper chest development, and range of motion while pressing. That, in turn, will help your explosiveness on the flat bench. The better form on the flat bench will result in better mind-muscle-connection to your pecs and will aid in hypertrophy.

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Posted Wed, 07/29/2020 - 10:02
aipim

Hi,

love this workout, but what to do after it? any other similar workout with same intensity?

Thanks

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:09
Yoshi

Hey Aipim

If you're looking for intense workouts I recommend giving GVT a try. Just a heads up, GVT is not easy.
https://www.muscleandstrength.com/articles/increase-muscle-size-with-GVT

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Posted Tue, 07/14/2020 - 04:40
Ahmed Afify

Hi,
This looks like a great plan for me, but I have a lower back injury so I can't deadlift what would you recommend as an alternative? Thanks!

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:10
Yoshi

Hey Ahmed

I recommend sumo deadlifts or trap-bar deadlifts. They're much easier on your lower back.

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Posted Wed, 07/01/2020 - 02:50
Carissa

Thanks for this, Jonathan! Would you recommend completely all sets /reps of one exercise before moving on to the next? For example, on Day 4 would you complete all reps/sets of front squats before moving on to barbell lunges?

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:11
Yoshi

Great question Carissa

That's exactly how you'll perform them. Each exercise to completion before moving on to the next.

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Posted Fri, 06/19/2020 - 19:04
Daniel

I was wondering - I wanna bulk my arms up but just want the strength gains for my legs. Would it be crazy to try:
Day 1: Upper body hypertrophy
Day 2: Lower body power
Day 3: Rest
Day 4: Upper body power
Day 5: Rest
Day 6: Upper body hypertrophy
Day 7: Rest

Would this cause me to over train my arms? Or does it make sense?

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 10:59
Yoshi

Hey Daniel

I recommend you stick with the layout of the program. Stick with it for 10-12 weeks and track your progress. Performing the example you listed would leave your upper body extremely gassed after a week or 2 (maybe 3).

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Posted Mon, 06/15/2020 - 12:56
Shane

Hi, would 90 secs rest be good for all exercises or should it vary depending on hypertrophy or strength.
Thanks.

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:01
Yoshi

Hey Shane

I recommend 90-120 seconds on power days (maybe a little longer for squats/deadlifts), and 60-90 on hypertrophy days.

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Posted Wed, 06/10/2020 - 19:07
Bryce

What percent of my 1rm do I use?

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Posted Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:15
Yoshi

Hey Bryce

For your power days, you'll be around 90% of your 1RM. For hypertrophy, stick around 75-80%.

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Posted Wed, 06/10/2020 - 18:30
Bryce

Is there anything about progressive overload in this program?