Whether or not you can train the same muscle group two days in a row is a controversial topic in the fitness industry. Many trainers agree that training small muscle groups such as the calves on consecutive days is okay, but there’s still some disagreement about whether or not you can train the glutes on back-to-back days.
So, can you train glutes two days in a row? You can train glutes two days in a row as long as you choose your exercises carefully and vary your training intensity. However, training the glutes on back-to-back days should only be done as a short-term strategy to help you overcome a muscular weakness or strength plateau, and it should not be done by beginners.
In this article, I’ll review what the research says about training glutes two days in a row. I’ll also discuss the pros and cons of training the glutes two days in a row, reasons why you should or shouldn’t train the glutes on back-to-back days, and tips on how to structure a back-to-back glute training program.
I’ll also provide a sample workout routine for training the glutes two days in a row.
Training Glutes 2 Days In A Row: What Does The Science Say?
Researchers from the University of Porto in Portugal analyzed the effects of three consecutive training days versus three spaced-out training days per week.
The subjects in both groups saw similar increases in leg press and bench press strength. The group that trained on consecutive days saw bigger increases in chest and arm size, but the results weren’t significantly larger than those of the group that trained on non-consecutive days.
This suggests that increases in strength and muscle size occur as a result of overall training frequency and not from training them on consecutive or non-consecutive days. It also suggests that you don’t need 48 hours of rest in between workouts to see results.
Additionally, a study published in Frontiers in Physiology found no significant differences in strength or body composition between a group of recreational male lifters who lifted on consecutive days and another group that had 48-72 hours in between each training session.
And because the participants who trained on consecutive days only worked out three days per week, they had four full rest days. This suggests that the total amount of rest you get within a seven-day period is more important than resting for at least 48 hours between workouts.
While the subjects in the second study didn’t train the glutes specifically, and it’s unknown if the subjects in the first study performed any direct glute work, one can assume that the findings can apply to glute training as well.
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Reasons To Train Glutes 2 Days in A Row
Sometimes, you have no choice but to train your glutes two days in a row. You may also just enjoy training the same muscle group on two consecutive days. Let’s take a look at reasons why you may or may not choose to train your glutes two days in a row.
1. You Have a Limited Number of Days To Work Out
Jobs, family responsibilities, and other personal obligations often limit which days you can work out. Training your glutes two days in a row when your schedule won’t allow you to have rest days in between means you can still train your glutes at a higher frequency instead of potentially only being able to train them once a week.
2. You’re Used to Doing a High-Volume or High-Frequency Routine
If you already have experience following a high-volume or high-frequency training program, your body is already acclimated to working out the same muscle group multiple times per week. You’ll be able to transition more easily into a routine where you train your glutes on back-to-back days.
3. You’re a CrossFitter or Olympic Weightlifter
Even though CrossFit WODs don’t include glute isolation exercises such as glute bridges, you still indirectly work your glutes through squatting or deadlifting movements, which come up in a lot of WODs.
Similarly, Olympic weightlifters do snatches and cleans as well as different squat variations, all of which work the glutes to some extent, on back-to-back days.
If you participate in either of these sports, you’ll have to train your glutes in some fashion on consecutive days because of their involvement in the movements that appear frequently in your programming.
4. You’re on Top of Your Nutrition and Recovery
If you’re already eating enough calories, getting enough sleep, and aren’t experiencing a significant amount of stress in your daily life, you can train glutes on back-to-back days. You’ll likely be recovered enough after the first training session that you’ll still feel energized and prepared to tackle your next glute workout.
5. You Need To Address Weaknesses in Your Glutes
Whether you feel like your glutes lag behind in terms of your physique or you struggle with squats or deadlifts because of weaknesses in the glutes, increasing your glute training frequency can help you overcome those weaknesses.
And depending on how the rest of your programming is scheduled, you may have to train them on consecutive days in order to fit the increased frequency into your routine.
Reasons Not To Train Glutes 2 Days In A Row
1. You Haven’t Recovered
How long it takes to recover from a workout is individual and depends on things like the intensity of your previous workout, what you ate the day before, and how well you slept. If you don’t feel like you can handle working out on two consecutive days, you should take at least one rest day before you train your glutes again.
2. You’re a Beginner
Beginners are able to recover faster from strength training than advanced lifters, but that doesn’t mean training the same muscle group on consecutive days is good for a beginner.
If you’re new to lifting weights, it’s best to have at least one day of rest in between your training sessions so you don’t become injured or lose your motivation to train because you’re too sore and tired.
Pros & Cons of Working Out Your Glutes 2 Days In A Row
Before we get into the programming considerations for training your glutes on back-to-back days, let’s review the pros and cons of doing so.
1. It Can Help Alleviate Muscle Soreness
Delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, refers to the soreness you feel from the muscle damage that occurs from lifting weights.
An effective way to reduce DOMS is to keep moving your body in order to promote blood flow to the muscles. As such, training your glutes two days in a row can help bring some relief to your sore muscles as long as you keep the intensity low on the second training day.
However, it should also be noted that DOMS and pain because of an injury are two different things. If you suspect that your muscle soreness is due to an injury, you should avoid training your glutes two days in a row.
Related Article: Glute Sore After Deadlifts: Is This Good or Bad?
2. It Allows You To Maintain Your Fitness Routine When You’re Busy
If you’re only able to get to the gym on Saturdays and Sundays, or you need to train on consecutive days before you go on vacation and won’t have access to a gym, training your glutes two days in a row allows you to keep up with your routine rather than having to skip a workout.
3. It Delays Protein Synthesis
Protein synthesis is the process through which your muscles produce protein in order to repair and grow. Studies show that it stays elevated for up to 24 hours after a workout.
By doing a second glute workout 24 hours after your first one, you extend the window of protein synthesis. This can help you achieve a greater muscle pump that lasts for a longer amount of time.
1. You Can’t Train To Failure
Training to failure isn’t feasible if you want to train your glutes two days in a row. You won’t be able to recover enough within 24 hours to have a safe and effective workout the next day.
If you’re wondering whether or not to train to failure, check out: Do Powerlifters Train To Failure? (Not Often, Here’s Why)
2. It Shouldn’t Be Done for a Long Period of Time
Training your glutes on back-to-back days isn’t something you should do indefinitely. Even if you use different exercises and vary your training intensity, you’ll eventually reach a point where you can no longer sustain training the same muscle group two days in a row.
I recommend training your glutes two days in a row for just one or two training cycles to help you overcome a strength plateau or muscular weakness, and then splitting up your glute workouts into non-consecutive days for your next training block.
3. You May Notice an Initial Decrease in Performance
When you first start training the glutes two days in a row, you may find it more difficult to get through your second workout. This is part of the reason why I advise keeping the reps high and weights low for the second workout, as I’ll discuss below.
Your body will adjust to the new routine after a couple of weeks, but until then, you’ll likely find that the second training session is much more challenging.
Related Article: Can You Train Triceps 2 Days In A Row? (Pros & Cons)
Tips on How To Structure Your Back-To-Back Glute Workouts
As you can see, there’s nothing inherently wrong with most people training the glutes on back-to-back days. But if you want to do so, there are ways to structure your workouts so you can see optimal results.
1. Vary Your Intensity and Rep Ranges
If you’re going to train the same muscle group on consecutive days, you’ll want to avoid training it at a high intensity both times.
Instead, one day should be a heavy training day with a moderate rep range and the second day should be a light training day with higher reps. This will allow you to complete two effective workouts on back-to-back days even if you’re still tired from the previous training session.
2. Switch Up Your Movements
If you’re training your glutes two days in a row, you should do different exercises each day. You’ll be able to train all three of the gluteal muscles — the gluteus maximus, gluteus minimus, and gluteus medius — so that one muscle doesn’t get overused.
Below are some examples of different glute exercises that you can add to your routine:
- Glute bridges
- Kas glute bridges
- Glute ham raises (or alternative)
- Reverse lunges
- Romanian deadlifts (including single-leg Romanian deadlifts)
- Bulgarian split squats (with your front leg out further)
- Cable pull-throughs
For a list of additional cable exercises that target the glutes, check out 3 Cable Glute Workouts for Mass (Complete Guide).
Related Article: What Attachment Do You Use For Cable Kickbacks (3 Options)
3. Increase Your Time Under Tension
Spending more time under tension is an excellent way to build muscle mass and strength without needing to lift heavy. It’s also a good way to add some variety to your routine so you don’t feel like you’re doing the same thing over and over again when you train your glutes two days in a row.
Some ways to increase your time under tension when training the glutes include:
- Performing Romanian deadlifts with a 3- or 5-second eccentric (the lowering portion of the lift)
- Holding a glute bridge at the top for 3-5 seconds
- Doing 1¼ or 1½ reps of the glute bridge in which you thrust your hips up, lower the weight a quarter of the way or halfway down, lift the weight back up to the top, and then lower all the way
Sample 2 Day In A Row Glutes Program
Below is a sample 2-day glute workout that you can do on back-to-back days. The first day is intended to be a moderate- to high-intensity day with heavier weights and slightly lower reps. The second day is a lower-intensity day. Sets and reps are higher, but the weights should be lower.
Glute Workout Day One
- Glute bridge – 3 x 5
- Good mornings – 3 x 6-8
- Reverse lunges – 3 x 6-8 per leg
- Russian kettlebell swings – 3 x 8-10
Glute Workout Day Two
- Romanian deadlift – 4 x 8-10
- Glute ham raises – 4 x 8-10
- Bulgarian split squat – 4 x 10-12 per leg
- Single-leg Romanian deadlifts – 4 x 10-12 per leg
Other Glute Training Resources
- Blood Flow Restriction Training for Glutes (Complete Guide)
- How To Leg Press Using Your Glutes (6 Tips)
- Can’t Feel Your Glutes While Squatting? Try These 9 Tips
- Can’t Feel Your Glutes In Lunges? Try These 6 Tips
- Don’t Feel Your Glutes Hip Thrusting? Try These 9 Tips
- 12 Best Glute Isolation Exercises (Cable, Bands, Machines)
Training your glutes two days in a row requires careful exercise selection and proper fatigue management, but it is possible as long as you’re still taking one or two full rest days per week.
However, beginners should not attempt to train the same muscle group on back-to-back days. I also recommend utilizing it as a short-term training strategy to help overcome strength or physique weaknesses. It’s not something that should be done for the long-term.
About The Author
Amanda Dvorak is a freelance writer and powerlifting enthusiast. Amanda played softball for 12 years and discovered her passion for fitness when she was in college. It wasn’t until she started CrossFit in 2015 that she became interested in powerlifting and realized how much she loves lifting heavy weights. In addition to powerlifting, Amanda also enjoys running and cycling.