Battle For Biceps: Lift Big to Get Big?

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    Battle For Biceps: Lift Big to Get Big?


    Okay, here is the question:

    Lift big to get big with biceps? i.e., 4 Sets of 5 reps, finishing at near failure.

    Or-

    Lift moderate to get bigger biceps? i.e., 3-4 sets of never going less than 10 reps.

    I'm interested in hearing everyones thoughts on this topic. Thanks!

  2. yea!!!!!
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    Only way to find out is to try both,.... all people are different. I know guys that use low reps for bi's and their arms blow up. Then other guys( like myself) have to use lower weight, high reps, and stricter form to get results.
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    for me tons of volume tons of reps really blew em up. however now that dont work i just do strip sets

    30 lbs each side relatively strict form set 8-10 reps drop 5 pounds each side repeat and go to failure every set 1 min rest between.. 30 secs rest when it strats getting to light.
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    Quote Originally Posted by brk_nemesis View Post
    Only way to find out is to try both,.... all people are different. I know guys that use low reps for bi's and their arms blow up. Then other guys( like myself) have to use lower weight, high reps, and stricter form to get results.
    True... I'm in the "other guys" category with you. What kind of workout do you do?

    Here's mine (any advice?)

    Concentrated spider curls 2X15 warm up sets 3X10 regular
    Barbell curl 2X15 warm up 3 sets (10,8,6)
    Incline Dbell curl 3X10-12
    Hammer Curl 3X10-12
    Overhead Cable Curls 2X12

    Thanks!
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    gain weight to get big bis. When you are standing their with a shirt on walking through the mall, getting your bicep peak a little higher or adding 1/8 of an inch to your arms means nothing. In reality that is what just about everyone on this board is doing, possibly going to the beach where the same thing applies, none of you are hitting back double bi poses for the girsl walking by. In order to truly build bigger arms you need to get bigger. You are not going to put an inch on your arms staying the same size, unless you are a beginner, or have completely neglected your bis. I have completely neglected my bis, and i don't think i could put an inch on them right now by just training them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptazz12 View Post

    Lift big to get big with biceps? i.e., 4 Sets of 5 reps, finishing at near failure.

    Or-

    Lift moderate to get bigger biceps? i.e., 3-4 sets of never going less than 10 reps.
    Quote Originally Posted by jcp2 View Post
    gain weight to get big bis. When you are standing their with a shirt on walking through the mall, getting your bicep peak a little higher or adding 1/8 of an inch to your arms means nothing. In reality that is what just about everyone on this board is doing, possibly going to the beach where the same thing applies, none of you are hitting back double bi poses for the girsl walking by. In order to truly build bigger arms you need to get bigger. You are not going to put an inch on your arms staying the same size, unless you are a beginner, or have completely neglected your bis. I have completely neglected my bis, and i don't think i could put an inch on them right now by just training them.

    Well, you have a point on that, which is cool and all... but the question asks:

    Lift big to get big with biceps? i.e., 4 Sets of 5 reps, finishing at near failure.

    Or-

    Lift moderate to get bigger biceps? i.e., 3-4 sets of never going less than 10

    I'm sorry you neglect your biceps, but if you did have a routine that worked... I would love to know what it is!
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    my bis leave me perplexed as well. I wish I could help you but I can hardly even get my bis sore.

    Plus i just find them very boring to do, probably because they dont grow. Or maybe they don't grow because i find them boring.....its a viscious cycle.
  8. yea!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcp2 View Post
    gain weight to get big bis. When you are standing their with a shirt on walking through the mall, getting your bicep peak a little higher or adding 1/8 of an inch to your arms means nothing. In reality that is what just about everyone on this board is doing, possibly going to the beach where the same thing applies, none of you are hitting back double bi poses for the girsl walking by. In order to truly build bigger arms you need to get bigger. You are not going to put an inch on your arms staying the same size, unless you are a beginner, or have completely neglected your bis. I have completely neglected my bis, and i don't think i could put an inch on them right now by just training them.
    Getting bigger/ gaining weight doesn't mean anything if your bi's aren't getting properly worked. At that point all you are doing is gaining fat if your bi's aren't properly being hit. At that point you can use that idea for any part of the body: Just gain weight and your arms will get bigger,.... and your shoulders,... and your legs..... and every other part of your body.

    Idk where you get the idea "everyone on this board does this" from, as quite a bit of people on here perform some sort of "off-season bulk" throughout the year, then cut weight later on, whether its before summer or whenever.... which is essentially what you are saying. Gaining weight= bulking.

    Getting the food/nutrition inorder to grow is one thing, but if someone isnt experienced enough to know what works for their bi's and hit them properly,.... their arms ain't gonna grow muscle-wise. A guy with big, flabby, fatty arms is not more impressive than a guy with arms that are one-inch shorter, lean, ripped, and edged out.
  9. yea!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptazz12 View Post
    True... I'm in the "other guys" category with you. What kind of workout do you do?

    Here's mine (any advice?)

    Concentrated spider curls 2X15 warm up sets 3X10 regular
    Barbell curl 2X15 warm up 3 sets (10,8,6)
    Incline Dbell curl 3X10-12
    Hammer Curl 3X10-12
    Overhead Cable Curls 2X12

    Thanks!
    stick with the standing BB curls and incline DB's for pure size. Use the cables, and concentrations to bring out peaks and edge out the bi's. Lately ive been using cable curls to warm up my bis for a couple sets, then ill hit one exercise for bi's( standing BB, incline DBs, or arnold conc.). Im on a 3 day DC regime so I switch between those every other w/o day. Arms is the one thing I higher the reps on for all sets as low reps do nothing for me.

    Reverse BB curls and hammers for forearms and brachialis

    I do agree with jpc2 that the fastest way to get your arms up is to gain weight,.. but make sure you are hitting your bi's right. You could be hitting them right, but not getting the nutrition to recover, grow, gain weight, etc.
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    Thanks for the advice brk nemesis! I'll keep it all in consideration on my next bi's workout day....(which is in two days BTW). I'm going to make sure I keep the reps high and not drop them low and push through the pain.

    Quick question:

    Do you think 4 exercises is too much for Bi's?
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    Give up all bicep isolation work for a couple weeks and just do heavy compound exercises. Than come back and do some various curling movements and you'll be sore the next couple days.
    Remember why you started.
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    i've always thought the "lift big to get big" has been taken too far. lift big to get big has turned into "use more weights and less reps", when to me it means "lift more to get more" - one more rep, add 5 pounds. you must progress to progress, regardless of the weights or sets you're doing. not that my biceps are a strong point though.
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    Quote Originally Posted by suncloud View Post
    you must progress to progress.
    This answer dozens of training questions in 5 words.
  14. yea!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptazz12 View Post
    Thanks for the advice brk nemesis! I'll keep it all in consideration on my next bi's workout day....(which is in two days BTW). I'm going to make sure I keep the reps high and not drop them low and push through the pain.

    Quick question:

    Do you think 4 exercises is too much for Bi's?
    personally i would stick with prolly 1 or 2 bi exercises on bi day, and just rotate through all the exercises each bi day to keep them guessing. (not including hammers or reverse curls).
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptazz12 View Post
    True... I'm in the "other guys" category with you. What kind of workout do you do?

    Here's mine (any advice?)

    Concentrated spider curls 2X15 warm up sets 3X10 regular
    Barbell curl 2X15 warm up 3 sets (10,8,6)
    Incline Dbell curl 3X10-12
    Hammer Curl 3X10-12
    Overhead Cable Curls 2X12

    Thanks!
    did those spider curls last night.. biggest pump ever
    CURRENT 2014 Log http://anabolicminds.com/forum/old-school-hormone/252748-cherry-poppin-test.html
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    Quote Originally Posted by smshannon001 View Post
    did those spider curls last night.. biggest pump ever
    Heck yeah! I love those... make ya feel like your skin is ripping!!
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    straight bar 185lbs x 4-6 reps
    dumbells 80lbs x 4-6 reps
    hammer 75lbs x 4-6 reps

    those were my goals i reached, and definitely saw a lot of growth
    i go 4-6 reps and the results have been great
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptazz12 View Post
    True... I'm in the "other guys" category with you. What kind of workout do you do?

    Here's mine (any advice?)

    Concentrated spider curls 2X15 warm up sets 3X10 regular
    Barbell curl 2X15 warm up 3 sets (10,8,6)
    Incline Dbell curl 3X10-12
    Hammer Curl 3X10-12
    Overhead Cable Curls 2X12

    Thanks!
    YOu may be overtraining your bi's. I used to do an insane number of sets on everybody part, but then after my bis were stuck at the same size i backed off the number of sets and increased the intensity. I started doing 3 exercises and between 2 and 3 sets including warmup and my bis progressed like crazy. on the last set of every exercise i would go past failure and get someone to give me a couple forced reps with them exerting just enough pressure to get me thro the sticking point. I believe that since bis are a smaller muscle less is more so to speak. Hope this helps
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    you are definitely overtraining your biceps.
    training progress is from overload overtime. i would never go over 4 sets on a bicep workout. lately i have been doing 4 sets, 2 straight bar, 1 dumbell, 1 hammer but i am about to eliminate one set and just do one set of each after my week off

    the less sets i do the better my results get

    for you i think a great workout would be
    straight bar: 6-8 reps for one set
    dumbell: ditto
    hammer: ditto
    concentration/standing arnold style concentration: ditto

    remember these sets are to absolute positive failure, giving 100% intensity

    i do 4 sets of chest and that feels too much sometimes! even legs get only 8 sets ( quads and hams) and after my week off even those are going down a bit more in terms of set numbers. honestly as a training philosophy if you do one set of squats to the point where on that set you cannot in any way no matter what even move the bar anymore, you should barely be able to walk for a while. why would you waste time doing 5 sets of squats when one set could have done the same or better????????????? that being said i am still trying to get my mind to let go of doing 2-3 sets of squats but i would like to get to just doing one set
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    Quote Originally Posted by thegodfather View Post
    Give up all bicep isolation work for a couple weeks and just do heavy compound exercises. Than come back and do some various curling movements and you'll be sore the next couple days.
    I have read that your biceps (arms) will only grow proportioned to your body. By doing compounds and gaining some size everywhere else your biceps should follow.

    There are alot of people that train biceps light because they get trained with alot of other exercises and they see excellent results.
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    in terms of overall bulk size i do agree with you anthonyIOSOS that the compund back movements will trigger so much bicep stimulation they will grow as you do.

    but for the muscle will need some biceps movements for example hammer curls to hit the outer head increasingly and so on. it also helps to have strong biceps so that they dont fatigue when doing heavy back work -->some people do 5 chins then say their biceps are burning and can do no more

    it all depends on your goals if you want big nice strong biceps i would still "isolate" them with 3 sets a week like i outlined earlier
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzer View Post
    in terms of overall bulk size i do agree with you anthonyIOSOS that the compund back movements will trigger so much bicep stimulation they will grow as you do.

    but for the muscle will need some biceps movements for example hammer curls to hit the outer head increasingly and so on. it also helps to have strong biceps so that they dont fatigue when doing heavy back work -->some people do 5 chins then say their biceps are burning and can do no more

    it all depends on your goals if you want big nice strong biceps i would still "isolate" them with 3 sets a week like i outlined earlier
    Yea I agree. Biceps also need some isolation for shaping the muscle. When I first started working out I only did the compound exercises to grow. Eventually i wanted to really shape the muscles and I started to isolate.

    For the thread starter I would say pack on some more muscle and your biceps will grow.

    Try doing the dumbbell curls on a inclined bench to really stretch the bicep making room for potential growth.
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    Here's the Bicep workout that I performed yesterday:

    Incline DB curl
    1-Warm up set
    3X10 (moderate weight VERY strict form reaching failure on last set)

    Gurilla Curl (lean chest down on incline bench and perform curls palm up)
    3X10 (moderate weight VERY strict form reaching failure on last set)
    *dropped weight 60% on 4th set and performed 15 reps
    BTW- What a pump from this exercise!

    Concentrated Hammer Curl (both arms at same time, same movement, weights together)
    3X10 (moderate weight VERY strict form reaching failure on last set)

    Reverse Grip EX Bar curl
    3X10 (moderate weight VERY strict form reaching failure on last set)

    Overall the pump felt great, I now understand you don't have to do 10 exercises to work the bis.

    Any modifications? Or should just run this but change the exercises (i.e., next week do barbell curls instead of incline curls)
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    sometimes i wonder....

    you did 13 sets of biceps yesterday up to 10+ reps each?!?!?!
    you should not even do 13 sets for legs, chest, back, etc...


    do what you want but do what I and others have stated. 13 sets is absolutely insane a complete waste of time. 13 sets of biceps?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    i was talking 3 or 4 sets, i dont understand what you want. if you want large, stong, explosive arms then do 3-6 sets (straight bar, hammer, dumbell ONLY if you want big size)
    if you want relatively strong, endurance packed marathon biceps then do your program and switch up whatever you want, and do reverse hanging gorilla curls in an anti-gravity chamber with knee wraps on and your neighbors panties around your face ... i mean W-T-F !!!?!?

    13 sets of biceps is ridiculous, the point is to overload your muscle so it adapts and grows not run a marathon with them

    -- sorry but you made me spit out my coffee when i counted 13 sets, so yes i am upset
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzer View Post
    you are definitely overtraining your biceps.
    training progress is from overload overtime. i would never go over 4 sets on a bicep workout. lately i have been doing 4 sets, 2 straight bar, 1 dumbell, 1 hammer but i am about to eliminate one set and just do one set of each after my week off

    the less sets i do the better my results get

    for you i think a great workout would be
    straight bar: 6-8 reps for one set
    dumbell: ditto
    hammer: ditto
    concentration/standing arnold style concentration: ditto

    remember these sets are to absolute positive failure, giving 100% intensity

    i do 4 sets of chest and that feels too much sometimes! even legs get only 8 sets ( quads and hams) and after my week off even those are going down a bit more in terms of set numbers. honestly as a training philosophy if you do one set of squats to the point where on that set you cannot in any way no matter what even move the bar anymore, you should barely be able to walk for a while. why would you waste time doing 5 sets of squats when one set could have done the same or better????????????? that being said i am still trying to get my mind to let go of doing 2-3 sets of squats but i would like to get to just doing one set
    Looks like we have the same training mentality brutha. I never believed the less is more principle until i tried it and it worked miracles. You can spend half the time and get double the results if the intensity is there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzer View Post
    sometimes i wonder....

    you did 13 sets of biceps yesterday up to 10+ reps each?!?!?!
    you should not even do 13 sets for legs, chest, back, etc...


    do what you want but do what I and others have stated. 13 sets is absolutely insane a complete waste of time. 13 sets of biceps?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    i was talking 3 or 4 sets, i dont understand what you want. if you want large, stong, explosive arms then do 3-6 sets (straight bar, hammer, dumbell ONLY if you want big size)
    if you want relatively strong, endurance packed marathon biceps then do your program and switch up whatever you want, and do reverse hanging gorilla curls in an anti-gravity chamber with knee wraps on and your neighbors panties around your face ... i mean W-T-F !!!?!?

    13 sets of biceps is ridiculous, the point is to overload your muscle so it adapts and grows not run a marathon with them

    -- sorry but you made me spit out my coffee when i counted 13 sets, so yes i am upset
    Fritzer-- My bad, I promise I'll get this right eventually. You're right, I DO want strong, explosive arms. I'll change it up to your recommendation.

    Should I run the same workout scheme on all body parts? 1 set per exercise (max of 4 exercises per body part).

    Today is back day:

    Dead lift
    2- very light warmup sets
    1X6-8
    Lat pull downs
    1X6-8
    DB Rows
    1X6-8
    Close grip Pull downs
    1X6-8

    Let me know what you think!
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    you are thinking better now. i think the one to two set thing is a great idea. it is largely a form of training that skip lacour, jeff willet, and dorian yates follow. Dorian yates would do like you mentioned 1 set barbell row, 1 set machine row, 1 set deadlift, 1 set pulldown, etc...

    even after 5 years of training i cannot say that i am at the point to fully incorporate this. like i said before i am still doing 2 sets of squats, etc. it is really really hard to train so that the one set you do is actually 100% perfect and intense.

    i have trained max-oT for the last 4 years and i think that for the next 2+ years for you it is the PERFECT program to get your head around less sets, better exercises, and the idea of true intensity.

    go to AST sports website and sign-up free for the Max-OT program and just read read read and follow it man

    trust me! i went from 6'5 170lbs, to 6'5 245lbs and i am still now making gains
    in that time i went from arms that were pretty much bone to 19 1/4 inches if you want a big body big arms etc then start training MAX-OT

    later on and i mean in a couple years then you will see why you want to go even further into intensity and fewer sets, but MAX-OT is perfect most back workout will have 1 set only the LARGE exercises like bench, barbell rows, squats have 2 sets which is an awesome way to start

    maxOT bicep work is like so
    :straight bar 2 sets 4-6 reps
    :dumbell: 1 set 4-6 reps
    Hammer: 2 sets 4-6 reps

    still 5 sets there MORE than enough

    --> just incase you are wondering or iffy. i have put now 5 friends on this program with my ideas etc and they have seen tremendous gains. once you train this way you will NEVER EVER EVER go back to the old way i can guarantee you that. i've seen bench fly up over 100lbs in 2 months, 20lbs of muscle in a few months etc etc the possibilities are endless when you remove the restrictions things like 13 sets can put on your muscles
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    Quote Originally Posted by dynomite View Post
    my bis leave me perplexed as well. I wish I could help you but I can hardly even get my bis sore.

    Plus i just find them very boring to do, probably because they dont grow. Or maybe they don't grow because i find them boring.....its a viscious cycle.
    Doesn't matter. Whatever your doing now, do the oposite.
    And log your workouts. Switching the routine provides the shock and tracking what you do and progression ensures that your guns have a NEED to get bigger
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzer View Post

    go to AST sports website and sign-up free for the Max-OT program and just read read read and follow it man

    Cool, I'm 100% down to try it. I signed up for the Max-OT training. Is there anyway to get it on pdf file? Unfortunately where I'm at, I don't have the time to spend hours on the net.

    I'm stoked about this training, I'll incorporate it into this weeks workout, and start logging it next week.

    Also, since I'll be a newby at this I just want to make sure the concept is correct.
    -I walk up to the bar to perform deadlifts and put on the plates of what I think would tire me out in 10 reps. If I perform this exercise and I DONT fail by 8 reps, it's cool to throw on some more weight on and go one more set to completely work out the muscles? Hopefully by the 2nd (and last set) I have completed it right b/c I won't do a third.

    Another question, I'm working on RECOMP right now. Any advice on how I should do cardio? Right now I'm doing Mon-Weds-Fri 20-30 mins of running. I was thinking of switching to HIIT, but I want to make sure I don't lose any positive mass.
  30. Advanced Member
    fritzer's Avatar
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    yeah max-ot cardio is essentially hit cardio so read about that on the site

    don't know about the PDF, maybe save it onto usb in word??

    like you said for deadlift that should onyl happen if you dont know what weight you can do. remember to warm up, etc like outlined in the program. if you go over 6 reps increase the weight if your form is good
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    AnthonyIOSOS's Avatar
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    I have an article on training arms during your leg routine. Apparently it may increase your arm size by doing this every now and then. I will search through my magazines and see if I can find the information.
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    It is important to stay in that 10-12 rep range to get that muscle hypertrophy you really want. But once a month I would say drop to higher weight an lower reps to build that strength and power. A little progressive overload if you would say.

    Get er done
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    i do biceps 4-6 reps like every muscle it responds to overload and progressive stimulus over time

    worked amazing for me, and 185lb + straight bar is pretty sick when you get up there
  

  
 

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