I am going to outline the first phase of double-shock now with delts being the number 1 priority. Soon, I will go over a few nutritional concepts I have found to be extremely helpful in maximizing gains. I can't emphasize enough how much furthering your delt gains will help your chest and back exercises improve. In big compound exercises like pull-ups and benches, your smaller muscles will fail(the front and rear delts are smaller than the lats and pecs) before the larger. Training your delts to the max will actually help you gain on your chest and back because your weak links will be stronger. Well developed delts look awesome if taken to their fullest. On delt exercises, find the perfect balance of form good enough to really feel the delts working and at the same time being enough weight to stimulate further growth. Do not go too far on either side like sloppily throwing big weight around with no constant tension on the muscle or form so letter perfect you can barely use any weight at all. Balance is the key. Remember that your delts do need constant tension on them to grow and feel them working when you do your set with the mind-muscle link. When I began using this system 3 years ago, my delts began improving immediately and I was hooked on delt gains from there on out. Big delts will separate you from the average trainer more than anything. Use caution while training delts because they can be easily overtrained and that will stunt their growth. When I began this system, I reduced my sets and increased my intensity. I will now outline four workouts which is 1 for each week of phase 1.If you do too many sets on the first day of delt training(mon) then day 2 will drag them into the dungeon of overtraining when you hit chest. Stay out of there if you want to gain! The mon delt workout will be intense enough if you have the discipline to do the sets hard enough. More idle sets after your peak performance will only stimulate cortisol production which chemically tears down your muscles and joints thus making you smaller, more prone to injury, and fatigue will set in. You definitely want to avoid this. When you feel your sets and energy level start really lagging, it is time to stop the workout and save your energy for recuperation. Also be sure to warm up the shoulders thoroughly before you begin.
- Tuesday-Chest, Triceps
- Thursday-Back, Biceps, rear delts(because back workouts work them so hard)
- Saturday-Legs, cardio
- Begin the workout with good 'ol military presses. Instead of doing a normal 3 sets or something like that check this. Get warmed up till you are ready for your heaviest set. Load up as many 10 or whatever pound plates on each side as you can press taking the weight to your chin and stop just short of lockout cause this helps keep constant tension on your delts instead of resting on lockout like a WIMP cause it burns. Love and embrace the burn or go home. Strip one plate off each side of the bar and do another set. Keep the speed of your reps slow and that tension on it too. Strip another off each side and do more. Continue till you have done at least 3 dropsets. Raise the intensity as the sets progress instead of backing down from it. Your determination is what will make gains more than anything! On the lighter sets, try to push the weight up from your elbows as you contract your entire delt area and lower it slowly, knotting it up as it is torn from the stretch. Going too deep in presses of any kind will reduce your leverage creating a dead spot in the exercise while at the same time causing shoulder impingement increasing your odds of injury. This is why I recommend using the middle portion of the exercise here(better burn, no resting ,no impingement of the joint, and better leverage to apply your power-is that reason enough?!)After your drop sets, you are done with your presses. I have found that doing drop sets instead of regular sets gives a better pump and burn, sears definition into the area, and adds a lot of hardness to the muscle as well. Only do one series of drop sets on any exercise.
- Second, Go to the cables and put a handle on the button hook. Grab it and do a few easy warm up sets of cable side laterals. Only use one arm at a time for this exercise. Using cables changes the area of stress exerted on the side delts. It moves the stress to the lower portion of the medial deltoid where it attaches to your upper arm bone. This area is right on the edge of your shoulder where it is attached to your arm. Improving this area will help your shoulder width more than anything. Switching from dumbbell laterals to these has helped my width a lot. If I drop the cables for a while, my side delts will start shrinking so I don't really stray from these much anymore. You should concentrate on the form and feel the burn on your side delts rather than worry about how much weight you are moving. Excellent form is required here! When you do them, imagine you are pulling from the middle of the side of your arm and flex them at the top. Push-pull points must be used correctly to properly activate muscles that can be hard to feel(like the side delts and the lats.)Think of the side delt as another bicep sticking out of the side of your arm. You must feel the burn directly in this muscle for it to grow! After a few workouts, you will learn the proper form and feel of the exercise and then you can advance on to heavier poundages.
- Third, do a few warm up sets of upright rows. This is another delt exercise you must feel, not just do. This mental control over your body will help you stimulate the precise area you are looking to develop. Here, that area is the front and middle delts. I have found using a wide grip transfers the stress away from the traps and into the side delts. When you begin pulling the weight up, also try to pull the weight in half as if you were trying to split it in the middle. By pulling outward as well as upward, you will activate the fibers on the side of your shoulders to a higher degree. Do not bring the weight as high as possible and do not rotate your shoulder at the top. This is hard on your shoulders. Flex your shoulders forward, and keep your arm pointed down at all times. You will find the point to lift to where you can actually see your side delts sticking out and contracting. Hold it in that position for a 2-3 count and fully contract as much of your delt area as possible and lower slowly. This is not a one rep max exercise and should be used to scorch the delts with rep ranges of 6-15 where you take every rep slowly and without body momentum focusing 100% on the exact area being worked.
- First, I would like to turn you onto a style of dumbbell presses I learned from the very first Mr. Olympia Larry Scott. The way you vary the style of these will help them greatly impact the side delts. Start off with a weight that is easy for you so you can get the feel of this method at first. Throw them up to the pressing position, and remember a few key points.1-Keep your elbows behind you as far as you can comfortably 2-use only the middle portion of the range of motion which concentrates on the side delts-deeper uses the front delts and higher lets you rest so don't go there 3-You MUST push from the area of you shoulder furthest down on your arm where the side delt lies because push points are more important in delt training than any other body part if you want good development. 4-As you hold the dumbbells over your head, point the inside of them down and the outside up as this helps take the triceps out of the movement and helps you emphasize the delts.5-Use a very wide pressing arc where you stretch and push the weight up with only your delts. Visualize the attachment points on your arm and shoulder where the muscle is put together and knot up everything in the area with every rep. With enough practice, this exercise will work magic on your width and will let you feel the burn dead in your side delts. Throw in a set of one arm presses of this style to further concentrate on the area and you also get both arms worth of neuromuscular stimulation jam packed into one arm resulting in an amplified electrical signal telling your delt to contract. This is a very good thing!
- Second, do supersets of dumbbell side laterals directly into wide grip upright rows. Again, feel the side delts working instead of just throwing big weights around everywhere. Your delts really need that constant tension or they wont grow so keep it there.
- Third, finish with cable side laterals as described above
- Begin this workout with the cable side laterals. Warm up and then throw 20 or 30 pounds more than you used before on this exercise. Really, you should use a weight that you can barely ever get a rep out of. Now start the rep with help by having a spotter or you can provide the help yourself by pulling on the cable with your spare hand to get it firmly locked into the contracted position at the top of the rep. Hold it there momentarily, and lower it through the negative as slowly as possible and repeat until you need help even doing that. Now do as many drop sets using the overload negatives as possible till your freaking side delts go numb. Remember to contract at the top hard and feel the side delts tearing with every stretch of every negative rep. Do it hard as possible, and I guarantee soreness and results will come. A concoction of these and the Scott presses have made me fall in love with side delt gains!
- Now do sets of military presses and without rest, jump right into a set of Scott style presses using a lighter set of dumbbells so you can really fry the exact area of the side delts without mercy. Do these supersets till your shoulders hit the wall-you will know when! Trust me. You are done. Attack the enemy viciously and methodically, and you will win the war on no results.
- Begin the workout with military presses. Warm up fully. Now use the technique of partials to push absolute maximum poundage through the last few inches of the exercise. Load up that weight on the bar so you can cut it in half after your set of heavy partials. Now after you are done, cut the weight of the partials in half. With no rest after the partials other than stripping plates off, do negatives very, very, very slowly resisting mightily on the decent of the weight. This method takes the extremes of both negative and positive training to the max in a way the body is not accustomed to. Do this till your sets start lagging behind the first ones and then you are done with this part.
- Now, do cable side lateral negatives as described above. Love 'em!
- Finish this workout with high rep sets of upright rows to get a good pump and burn in the area.