If you want the most gains, you should train each muscle group twice a week, according to a new review in the journal Sports Medicine.
Scientists analysed 10 prior studies that compared muscle growth in people who trained each muscle group once, twice, or three times per week over a couple months. They found that when you work a muscle twice a week, it grows more than when you train it once a week.
You might be thinking, “duh.” But there’s more: that’s keeping the total number of sets and reps you do each week equal. Doing three sets of biceps curls on Monday and three sets on Thursday will make for bigger biceps than if you do six sets on Monday.
Break it down
Scientists aren’t sure why this is the case, says study author Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D., an assistant professor in exercise science at Lehman College. But here’s the theory:
Lifting triggers growth