Forget About Genetics!
There are factors that influence how well a training program will work. Genetics will always play a major role in how any given body part on our physique develops, and the variables that determine our body building success are endless. Age, nutrition, body biochemistry, discipline, dedication, training experience, training intensity, mind-muscle connection, consistency, variation - blah, blah, blah. But you can control how hard you train and how consistent you are. Forget about genetic limitations for a minute and focus on and on, like the break of dawn. That's what it's all about.
Because the body is not used to the unusual stress of weight training, most people experience pretty fast gains when they begin lifting weights. However as you get more experience in the gym, your body becomes more resistant to growth. It takes more and more to get results. Arms that blow up quickly from any type of workout in the early stages of training require a little something extra to grow as you progress.
When you first start working out you really don't know much. Form, technique, principles are just words not guidelines - you just jump right in and get down to business and what happens - happens. If only it stayed that simple. Don't think or analyze. Just train and grow. Unfortunately it doesn't. So you have to get creative to maximize muscle growth and strength gains. But the solution I've got will make you remember what it was like to grow like a weed in the early months of your weight training.
The biceps are a very small muscle group. It is a two-headed muscle beginning under the deltoid and inserting below the elbow. Its basic function is to twist the wrist downward and to lift and curl the arm. Since having a buff physique is associated with big arms, it is not difficult to focus a lot of energy and attention to the biceps. Start training the biceps with a tremendous amount of energy and they will respond.
Small muscle groups, at least the biceps, tend to respond differently to stimulation as opposed to larger muscle groups since their involvement in our daily activity outside of the gym is very limited. They will respond almost immediately to any stimulation because they are not used to much. When we first start working out, it is an EXTREME SHOCK to the body and in this case the biceps. The extreme shock causes the biceps to adjust to the shock by becoming, bigger, stronger, more conditioned and a muscle that can perform under severe stress.
The SHOCK TREATMENT
Unfortunately biceps do not continue to grow at the pace they did during the first few months of training. Since the biceps are small, they also tend to recover and adapt to training stimulation extremely fast. To combat this rapid adaptability and force your biceps to explode with ripped mass and vascularity, it's crucial to jolt them with a foolproof program. We need to make sure that we are always causing the biceps to work under different conditions to keep them continuously building it up. The biceps needs to be shocked - they need variety and intensity - they need a little thing called-SHOCK TREAMENT!
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There are many ways to use SHOCK TREATMENT training to get your biceps growing again?and keep them growing. You can continuously change the exercises and the order in which they are performed. The weights used can change. And the lifting techniques, such as isolation movements, compound movements, or training intensity all can change. For SHOCK TREATMENT we have to dig down deep and throw ourselves in the trenches. It's time to grind it out and just crush the biceps for maximum size and sinew. You will have to endure the pain, but as the old adage goes, no pain - no gain! FEEL ME! Let's get busy!
Standing Barbell Curls
This is the best overall mass building exercise for biceps. It is a very basic movement and allows you to handle the heaviest poundages possible during biceps training. Begin with this exercise since you're fresh and energy levels are highest. Go very heavy with the weights on this exercise, but don't sacrifice form. Lift as heavy as you can - as long as it's primarily your biceps, not momentum and your legs and back, doing the work.
How to perform the exercise:
Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart. Establishing a solid center of gravity enables you to really focus on using your biceps to curl up heavy weight and assures maximum safety. Using an underhand grip, grab a straight bar. Your hands should also be about shoulder width apart. This type of grip is the best for working the biceps entirely, helping to develop complete mass, shape and condition of the biceps. The bar should be hanging down at arms length with your arms just shy of lockout. Keep your elbows close to your body and curl the bar up.
Focus on using just the biceps muscles to bring the weight up in an arcing movement. Feel the biceps muscles contract and keep your elbows relatively stationary to maximize the tension on the biceps. Control the weight as you lower the bar back to the start position where the bar is just shy of touching your thighs.
Perform 1 light warm-up of 30 reps to increase blood flow to the muscles. Using the heaviest weights possible with proper form and technique perform 3 sets:
- 1 light warm-up of 30 reps
- 1 set for 12 reps
- 1 set for 8 reps
- 1 set 6 reps.
All right, so now the pump is kickin in. You can feel the skin on your arms tightening and your bis getting heavy. Now it's time to kick it up a notch with a super-set of two phenomenal mass building and thickening movements, Preacher curls and Hammer curls.
Preacher EZ Barbell Curl
Preacher curls are great for overall development of the biceps, mass and shape. It is especially good for lengthening and thickening the biceps, putting a lot of stress on the lower part of the biceps. This movement gives your biceps the appearance as if they are coming out of your forearm.
How to perform the exercise:
Find a comfortable position seated behind a preacher bench with your hand on an EZ curl (cambered) bar. Use an underhand grip slightly wider than your shoulders and lean into the preacher stand. Press your chest against the bench with your arms extending over it.
Lift the bar slowly upward in an arc until it almost touches the biceps being careful not to let the elbows move. FLEX AT THE TOP and control the descent, careful not to hyperextend your elbows at the bottom. Stay focused and perform your set.
Hammer Dumbbell Curl
Hammer curls are great for adding mass, definition, separation and peak to the biceps. It really hits the outer head of the biceps creating separation between the biceps and triceps. Using dumbbells allows you to achieve maximum amounts of concentration.
How to perform this exercise:
Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart with your knees slightly bent. Grab a hold of a pair of dumbbells with your palms facing in toward your body. Keep your back straight and your head up. Begin to curl the dumbbell up in front of your body (parallel with your torso), keeping your palms in and your elbows locked at your side. Feel the outer and lower biceps contract with the forearm and squeeze. Lower the weight in a controlled fashion and repeat with the other arm.
- 3 Supersets of 12 reps of Preacher Curls
- Followed by 12 reps of Hammer Curls
Incline Dumbbell Curls
The pump that began with barbell curls has now been elevated to "armed and dangerous" status with the Preacher/Hammer supersets. To continue this shock treatment jump right into Incline Dumbbell Curls. This is the perfect time to do this exercise since the purpose of this movement is to stretch the biceps for overall development. With the amount of blood that is in the biceps already from the previous supersets, the stretch in this movement will work very well to stimulate more development. Incline Dumbbell curls builds both mass and shape. We are going to perform this exercise to the front as to work the entire biceps. Curling to the outside will isolate more of the inner part of the biceps.
How to perform the exercise:
Sit back on an Incline bench set at approximately a 45 degree angle. Using an underhand grip and holding a pair of dumbbells let your arms hang down with your palms facing forward. Curl the arm up in an arcing motion, being conscious of contracting your biceps during the entire range of motion.
Keep your elbows slightly forward and control the weight as you lower it to maximize the stretch. Repeat with the other arm.
- 1 Set of 8 reps on each arm with very heavy weight
- Immediately perform another set with a lighter weight where you will fail at around 12 reps.
Standing Dumbbell Curls
NO, WE ARE NOT DONE YET - bear with me, we're almost there. This is what separates the contenders from the pretenders. It's time to go "down the rack" with standing dumbbell curls. Begin with the heaviest weight you can handle for the first set and then keep lowering the weight until you reach muscular failure. Start at the heavy end of the dumbbell rack and end up at the end with the light weights. The purpose here is to completely overload the biceps to make sure they are really fatigue and to push the pump into overdrive.
How to perform the exercise:
Start with the heaviest weight you can handle for 3 reps and keep dropping the weight until you can not do one more rep.
Your "down the rack" should be something like this:
- 1 x 3 reps
- 1 x 5 reps
- 1 x 7 reps
- 1 x 10 reps
- 1 x 10 reps
- 1 x 15 reps
- 1 x 20 reps
Some things to be aware of throughout this routine are to stretch and flex your biceps in between your sets for maximum performance and development. After completing this routine your arms will be pumped beyond belief. They should be "straight blasted"...tortured - electrified from the shock treatment. It will probably hurt to lift your arms to wipe the sweat off your forehead.
For your convenience, we have created a printable page that you can use as a log for this workout.
But it will shock your biceps into growth. Try this out in place of your basic biceps routine to shock the biceps into the growth you want. Until next time, stay strong, healthy and UNBREAKABLE and remember SUCCESS is the ONLY OPTION! You feelin me now, dawg?!