Frank Zane’s workout routine is a 3 day body part split focused on muscular hypertrophy. This bodybuilding program uses high volume training sessions to break down muscle fibers and force a growth response. It is best suited for intermediate to advanced level bodybuilders.
Frank Zane is one of the most famous bodybuilders of all time, winning Mr. Olympia and Mr. Universe 3 times each. His physique is noted for its incredible symmetry and proportions. A video of his posing is included below.
- 1 Spreadsheet: Frank Zane Workout Routine
- 2 Recommended Reading
- 3 Overview: Frank Zane Workout Routine
- 4 Videos
Spreadsheet: Frank Zane Workout Routine
There are a number of special instructions for some of the exercises that should be followed for the best results with this routine. These can be found in the routine overview below.
This spreadsheet was designed based on the excellent post by Physical Culture Study.
To learn more about Frank Zane’s timeless methods for building pure muscle, check out his classic works:
- The Zane Body Training Manual
- The Workouts: Personal Training Diaries
- According to Physical Culture Study, this is where the routine described in this post was initially shared.
Overview: Frank Zane Workout Routine
Day 1 – Back, Biceps, Forearms, Abs Workout
|Wide Grip Deadlifts from Floor||3||10-15|
|Wide Grip Deadlifts from Blocks||3||8-10|
|Alternate Dumbbell Curls||3||8-10|
|Barbell Reverse Curls||2||12|
|Seated Barbell Wrist Wrist Curls||2||20|
|Leg Raises||Your Choice||50|
|Hanging Knee Ups||Your Choice||50|
|Seated Twists||Your Choice||50|
- Stretch your lats in between sets for front pulldowns and dumbbell rows.
- Use a slow negative (down motion or eccentric movement) for the concentration curls.
- Use as many sets as necessary for ab work.
Day 2 – Thighs, Calves, Abs Workout
|Lying Leg Curls||3||10-12|
|Standing Calf Raise||3||15-20|
|Donkey Calf Raise||4||20-25|
|Seated Calf Raise||One 4x drop set||5|
|Ab Work (your choice)||*||*|
- Warm up with a few light sets of leg extensions before squats.
- Squats should use a slow negative/eccentric movement.
- Stretch hamstrings in between leg curl sets.
- Stretch quads in between leg extension sets.
- Stretch calves in between calf raise sets.
- Ab work is your choice, just make sure it doesn’t fatigue the upper body.
Day 3 – Chest, Shoulders, Triceps, Abs Workout
|Incline Dumbbell Press||4||4-10|
|Decline Dumbbell Flyes||3||8-12|
|Cross Bench Dumbbell Pullover||3||8-12|
|Close Grip Bench Press||3||8-12|
|One Arm Overhead Extensions||3||8-12|
|V Grip Pressdown||3||8-12|
|Bent Over Dumbbell Lateral Raises||3||10-15|
|Side Cable Raise||3||8-12|
|Hanging Leg Raises||1||100|
|Cardio||1||15-20 min on bike|
- Don’t fully lock out bench press reps in order to keep the muscles under constant tension.
- Incline dumbbell press should start at a 70 degree and then get progressively flatter after each set.
- Stretch triceps in between one arm overhead extension sets.
- Hold each contraction for 1 second when performing the V-grip pressdown.
- Cardio can be riding a stationery bike for 15 to 20 minutes or jogging for 1.5 miles (2.4 km).
Training and Diet Advice with Frank Zane
Here is a video describing training and diet advice from the man himself, Frank Zane.