5 Tips for the Best Arm Workouts

Chiseled, well-muscled arms are one of the most sought after results of those in the fitness community.  Hours are spent lifting, curling, and working towards defining their arms in a way that makes them proud to show them off.  But the truth is that not all workouts are created equal, and there’s no such thing as instant results. With that being said, there ARE workouts that put a rush on the results you’re looking for, and are designed to specifically increase the muscle mass and muscle strength of your arms.

Start With a Strength Stimulating 5×5 Superset

It’s time to step out of the traditional rep range of 8-12 with this arm workout.  Instead, consider using the tried and true “5 sets of 5 reps” strategy. When paired with EZ-bar skulls and EZ-bar curls, these reps can easily allow you to continually add more weight than you can on multiple other exercises, and allow you to not only maximize your exercise in a shorter amount of time, but possibly even cut down the risk of muscle injury and depletion.

Moderately Increase the Volume of Your Superset

In this step, you’re going to pay more attention to simultaneous reps instead of alternating them.  By doing exercises such as the dumbbell curl, you’re going to maximize your strength training without spending more time or doing more damage to one arm or the other.  An important thing to remember when doing this exercise, however, is that it’s important not to jump right away to your max weight. A good strategy is to start at roughly a 15% lower weight than you would normally max at.  To break it down, consider that your max is 100 pounds at 10 clean reps a piece. Instead of starting at 100, start at 85 pounds and do 8 clean reps a piece. When done this way, you decrease muscle fatigue and leave room for improvement.  When exercising your biceps, split your max weight in half.

Utilize Ladders in Your Third Superset

Ready to take your exercise up a notch?  Then now is where you head on over to the Smith Machine.  But, you’re not going to load the bar for this exercise. Instead, you’re going to be doing a combination of push and pull movements in a dropset scheme.  This is a difficult move to achieve if you’ve never done it, and it’s suggested that you have a professional show you how, or you can find videos that explain the proper way to nail this ladder-type movement.  A good rule of thumb here is to understand that the second set is easier than the first, and after completing your first 10 reps you need to move the bar up a notch or 2. Then, complete 10 more reps. If you can’t do the 10 reps, don’t give up!  A simple foot adjustment or starting on a different bar level can make all the difference.

Kick it Into High Gear With High-Rep Rest-Pause Supersets

If you thought the first three were hard, you haven’t seen anything yet!  The cable station is next, and you’re going to need to attach a rope to an adjustable pulley.  To work your biceps, you’re going to use the steep side of a preacher bench and perform spider curls.  It’s important that the pulley be set as low as the station will allow. The math here is pretty straightforward, and grueling.  If you’re going to curl 40 pounds, then you need to do 40 reps. If you’re a beginner, you may just want to set a smaller goal for yourself however, as this is an exercise that takes some getting used to.  If you can’t do the reps all at once, take a 15 second break, and go at them again. You’ll need to continue to do this until you’ve finished. When you’re ready to work your biceps, you’ll need to move the pulley to the top of the station and perform push-downs.  Do the same amount of reps and pauses as you did on the biceps portion.

Finish Up With a Tabata Superset

Do your arms hurt yet?  Good, that means it’s working!  Time to finish with this last exercise.  You’re going to be doing eight 20 second bursts of curls, with 10 seconds of rest in between.  Once you’ve managed to push through the arm-busting Craig curls, you’re going to finish it all up with four minutes of close-grip push-ups.  It’s important that you break it down into 20 seconds of exercise, and 10 seconds of rest. If you’re unsure of how to do any of these exercises, again there’s no shame in asking a professional or looking up videos to break them down for you.


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