Lagging Biceps

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    Lagging Biceps


    10 years training, 5'10¾" 205 lbs, and my arms are a puny 17¼" - OK maybe 17½ pumped. I have very large triceps, so you can just imagine how underdevelopped my biceps are. I mean, I can do 10 perfect 2-1-3 reps of kick-backs with 40s but I can barely curl 60s.

    WTF!?!?????

    I think I tried everything. What's a man supposed to do?

    Looking for input here, ANY ideas are welcomed.

    Oh, here's my split :
    1. Back and calves
    2. Chest and biceps or vice-versa
    3. Legs and calves
    4. Shoulders, triceps and abs.

    These days it is 1on/1off, but sometimes 2on/1off, or 2on/1off + 1on/1off, etc. etc.

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    This may sound crazy but it just might work,I was in the same boat massive tricep overshadowed my lagging bicep.I always bought into that the Bicep was a small muscle group and 4 or 6 sets was enough...I read an article about Lee Priest and his Bicep routine,get this 20 sets.I said what the fug have I got to loose I do5 sets standing barbell curl 6-8 reps,5 sets of preacher curl 6-8 reps,5 sets of hammer curls 6-8 reps and finish off with 5 sets of cable curls or dumbell curls w/supine the wrist for 6-8 reps..It has been three weeks my Biceps never looked so good and I do this twice a week....
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    Wow all that twice a week? I guess you just have to find what works. Maybe I should give this a try.
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    I like splitting my bicep routines into 1/2 HIT-ish style and 1/2 higher volume. I usually go heavy with preacher curls, then go higher reps for standing curls then lower reps/heavier(relatively speaking) for seated hammer curls to finish them off. I'll reverse this every few weeks.

    Also I use a Back/Bicep day and do all the bicept work after the back work(chins, pulldowns, dumbell rows). So realistically the bi's are getting hit with some pretty high volume. Works well for me (too well, gotta play catch up with my get-away sticks).
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    Quote Originally Posted by bioman
    Works well for me (too well, gotta play catch up with my get-away sticks).
    !!!
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    Mine suck as well. Interested to see what Mr. I Hate Low Carb Diets has to say about this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaDmaN
    This may sound crazy but it just might work,I was in the same boat massive tricep overshadowed my lagging bicep.I always bought into that the Bicep was a small muscle group and 4 or 6 sets was enough...I read an article about Lee Priest and his Bicep routine,get this 20 sets.I said what the fug have I got to loose I do5 sets standing barbell curl 6-8 reps,5 sets of preacher curl 6-8 reps,5 sets of hammer curls 6-8 reps and finish off with 5 sets of cable curls or dumbell curls w/supine the wrist for 6-8 reps..It has been three weeks my Biceps never looked so good and I do this twice a week....
    I have other idea. Don't train your bi's for 4 weeks and see how it goes.
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    Vary your eccentric and concentric times.
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    MaDmaN, Imma try your thing, well ONCE a week for starters. All the professional advice I've heard about has always been "be wary of overtraining your biceps, it is a SMALL muscle group" Very small, yeah. Sometimes I wonder if the pros don't just say the reverse of what works to keep the rest of the guys smaller... . !?

    OTOH, since biceps are a small muscle group, then they must be able to recuperate easily. Right? Huh? Wrong? Whatever... I'll update this thread in a couple months with findings. Thanks guys for the suggestions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunaHotel
    MaDmaN, Imma try your thing, well ONCE a week for starters. All the professional advice I've heard about has always been "be wary of overtraining your biceps, it is a SMALL muscle group" Very small, yeah. Sometimes I wonder if the pros don't just say the reverse of what works to keep the rest of the guys smaller... . !?

    OTOH, since biceps are a small muscle group, then they must be able to recuperate easily. Right? Huh? Wrong? Whatever... I'll update this thread in a couple months with findings. Thanks guys for the suggestions.

    Good choice Luna not because it's mine idea,well yes it is LOL..Biceps IMO are like calves they need volume and do recoup very quickly.I do squats 10 sets it takes a full week to recover,but Biceps 2 to 3 days..Give it 6 weeks and I think you will be surprised..
    Last edited by MaDmaN; 09-02-2004 at 04:29 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobo
    Vary your eccentric and concentric times.
    ...AMEN!
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    Supersets worked wonders for me. I start off with 4 sets of barbell curls. Then I do supersets with seated dumbbell curls and hammer curls. I do this with 25lb's STRICT form and it hurts like a biotch. This really filled out my bi's nicely. Just keep trying things until you find what works, but make sure when you try something you stick to it for at least a month. Any less than that I don't think you'll notice too much.
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    yeah i have the same big tricep, lil bicep problem. im curious, though, how in gods name are you guys training things like biceps twice a week without making your workouts over an hour?
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    ONE of my 5 training days is committed 100% to biceps/forearms because I'm also at the point where I'm struggling to get continued natural growth also. For awhile I had also bought into the idea that less could be more with biceps being a smaller muscle group but I found I was moving in the wrong direction also. I train back 3 days earlier, and overall this seems to be pretty good.

    On the biceps day right now I do:


    Standing barbell curls
    5 warmup sets, light low reps
    135 x 6 (great form, slow strict negatives)
    115 x 8 (same)
    95 x 10 (same)

    Preacher Curls
    85 x 10 (great form, slow strict negatives, pause @ bottom)
    85 x 9 (same)
    85 x 8 (same)

    And as part of my forearm routine, I'm doing Reverse Dumbell concentrated curls

    35 x 10 (strict, slow)
    35 x 9 (same)
    35 x 8 (same)
    35 x 7 (same)
    35 x 6 (same)

    While these are all strict, the negatives get slower with each set as reps come down

    Still, I'm intrigued by Madman's post that maybe volume is the way to go with biceps on that 1 day a week. The above has been working better for me, but I think he's right, and I'm going to throw in 3-4 more direct biceps sets of another exercise, maybe concentrated dumbbell curls..........
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    Quote Originally Posted by PC1
    ONE of my 5 training days is committed 100% to biceps/forearms because I'm also at the point where I'm struggling to get continued natural growth also. For awhile I had also bought into the idea that less could be more with biceps being a smaller muscle group but I found I was moving in the wrong direction also. I train back 3 days earlier, and overall this seems to be pretty good.

    On the biceps day right now I do:


    Standing barbell curls
    5 warmup sets, light low reps
    135 x 6 (great form, slow strict negatives)
    115 x 8 (same)
    95 x 10 (same)

    Preacher Curls
    85 x 10 (great form, slow strict negatives, pause @ bottom)
    85 x 9 (same)
    85 x 8 (same)

    And as part of my forearm routine, I'm doing Reverse Dumbell concentrated curls

    35 x 10 (strict, slow)
    35 x 9 (same)
    35 x 8 (same)
    35 x 7 (same)
    35 x 6 (same)

    While these are all strict, the negatives get slower with each set as reps come down

    Still, I'm intrigued by Madman's post that maybe volume is the way to go with biceps on that 1 day a week. The above has been working better for me, but I think he's right, and I'm going to throw in 3-4 more direct biceps sets of another exercise, maybe concentrated dumbbell curls..........
    Yeah you can't really look past the fact EVERYONE is having better luck with higher volume on biceps. In Arnold's encyclopedia, he states that the biceps are one of the fastest recovering muscles, despite their size, and that volume work is best for them. Never thought I would believe it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LakeMountD
    Yeah you can't really look past the fact EVERYONE is having better luck with higher volume on biceps. In Arnold's encyclopedia, he states that the biceps are one of the fastest recovering muscles, despite their size, and that volume work is best for them. Never thought I would believe it.
    Amen to that... I guess we all have to keep our eyes open to the glorious truth Thats what this board was founded upon
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    Well I tried your workout on Sunday and I am still a little sore. I think that I may try it again today.
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    I know for myself that I had ben using fairly high volume 12-15 sets for a few months and definetly saw a drop off in the results i was getting, and switching to a low volume 5-6 sets has seemed better for the past month.(both situations once a month) Perhaps it is important that overtime you switch between high and low volume for time lengths. Have to spur that new growth reactions. any ideas?
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    I have an idea.


    There is no ONE way. Never will be. Its constantly switching it up that will spur results. So people should focus on switching exercises, rep ranges, TUT and so forth.

    Although its nice when your plan already incorporates these principles
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    Do chins on a pullup bar with a reverse grip. Do 4 sets of as many reps as you can squeeze out. Be sure to go all the way down and all the way up and get full range of motion. Then get on an incline bench and lie face down on it. Do dumbell curls with a weight you can get 12-15out of. Do 4 sets. Lastly, use the same bench and do one arm preacher curls for the same sets and reps as above. As your strength progresses on the chins add some weight. I tried this for my bi's and I am starting to see alot of mass and separation. Especially during the incline curls squeeze bicep hard at the top. Hope this helps.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobo
    I have an idea.


    There is no ONE way. Never will be. Its constantly switching it up that will spur results. So people should focus on switching exercises, rep ranges, TUT and so forth.

    Although its nice when your plan already incorporates these principles
    Big bump on Bobo's shot!!

    IF youve been training mainlu for hypertrophy for a long time, try going to 12-15 reps range with cadence of 4-0-2. Should allow more sarcoplasmic growth. It may be because youve reached a level of irrational hypertrophy that your sarcoplasmic growth is not keeping up with the myofibrillar growth.

    Oh and i agree with dropsets, its a nice way to shock those muscles.

    And maybe you can try this, some sort of isometric exercise, on your last rep try to keep the weight on the midpoint of your curl and hold it there for like uhm 20-30 seconds.

    Also, try flexing your biceps after a workout. Flex them hard for like 20 seconds.

    Just a few ideas. Hope this helps.
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    I tried the flex after the workout thing and they locked up and caused me to damn near cry in pain. Freakin horrible pain.
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    really? I just started doing it too...i guess you should have stopped a lil bit before they actually locked up...man you got some pain threshhold going for ya.....
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    do negative exercises for BIs they work great. My tris used to overshadow my bis a little i just always work my Bi's til failure using mass builders like BB curls, preacher curls etc
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    the best program for biceps is the one that puts you on the path to curling 225 for strict reps in the shortest amount of time. okay, okay, so what kind of program is that? i have no idea, but in spite of all the misinformation and conflicting ideas out there it still comes down to strength. I mean you'll have people saying you should do 20 sets minumum for biceps and others giving you the "are you ****ing crazy, biceps don't need any direct work" face. I say run your own little expiriment and don't listen to anyone else, keep everything constant and let strength gains in bicep excercises be your judge.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OmarJackson
    the best program for biceps is
    There is no best program.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwoleT
    do negative exercises for BIs they work great. My tris used to overshadow my bis a little i just always work my Bi's til failure using mass builders like BB curls, preacher curls etc
    You mean increase TUT? That only takes you so far.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobo
    There is no best program.
    bobo, did you read my post i basically said there is no best program except for the one that affords the best strength gains in strict controlled bodybuilding form. All i know is that the day that i curl 185 for 10 reps strict will be the day that i stop worrying about my biceps.
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    I thought I read it. Maybe I missed the point.


    Been a rough day....lol


    Although I don't agree with the strenght thing. Most BB'ers that compete are not that strong. Its a differnet type of trianing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OmarJackson
    bobo, did you read my post i basically said there is no best program except for the one that affords the best strength gains in strict controlled bodybuilding form. All i know is that the day that i curl 185 for 10 reps strict will be the day that i stop worrying about my biceps.
    I'll break 19 inches and still won't come close that. I know pro's that don't even come close to that.
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    I got 19's and I'm only curling 135 for 6 on a straight bar.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobo
    I have an idea.

    There is no ONE way. Never will be. Its constantly switching it up that will spur results. So people should focus on switching exercises, rep ranges, TUT and so forth.

    Although its nice when your plan already incorporates these principles
    Bobo, when I switch it up, is it OK if I switch up during the workout? I personally love hitting all different rep ranges during a workout. I.E. Put 135 on the bar for 2-3, then maybe do seated-incline dumbell curls for 8-10, then maybe hammers for 4-6, etc, etc. Is this sufficient, or should I be rotating rep ranges from workout to workout, week to week, month to month, etc?

    Oh, and for strength, I always start out with one heavy set of reps for 3, whether or or not the rest of the workout will be low, mid, or high reps. Is that a good way to keep strength gains high, while no limiting such factors as sarcoplamsic growth, which I'd get from high reps?

    Thanks!
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    Quote Originally Posted by OmarJackson
    the best program for biceps is the one that puts you on the path to curling 225 for strict reps in the shortest amount of time. okay, okay, so what kind of program is that? i have no idea, but in spite of all the misinformation and conflicting ideas out there it still comes down to strength. I mean you'll have people saying you should do 20 sets minumum for biceps and others giving you the "are you ****ing crazy, biceps don't need any direct work" face. I say run your own little expiriment and don't listen to anyone else, keep everything constant and let strength gains in bicep excercises be your judge.
    I hear what he's saying here. Some people don't work their biceps directly at all, or don't work them very well, and achieve a decent level of growth. Others do tons of sets and grow as well. I have witnessed both situations firsthand. Personally, I don't think I've ever really gotten anything out of intense direct bicep training, and last week I decided to almost completely eliminate direct bicep work from my program, relying on back training to produce bicep growth. Most of the guys I know who have good bicep development do not work their biceps with good form at all: they don't do the negative, don't use a full ROM, use weights that are too heavy for them, etc. This makes me think that most of their bicep growth is coming from back training. More and more I see the effectiveness of compound exercises; my chest, back and delts are my fastest growing bodyparts, all of which I train exclusively with big compound exercises , so I believe arms require the same.
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    7, 21's worked for me
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    To quote Chris Cook:

    "Alright my griend here is the deal..Arms are one of those bodyparts that have to be forced in to growing through VOLUME...I REPEAT..VOLUME...
    you have to put down that rediculouse weight and get ready to pump them up so full that you can't stand up..Thats right...Get to the gym pick up some 20's and litterally do them until they are about to fall off.
    Now when I say 20's I don't litterally mean that..I am talking figurativley so that you will get the point..
    high reps about 20 and hard drop sets to fallow..Strict movement and then let the cheat get in to it at the end..
    If you have ever seen most of the pro's that have great arms train them you would laugh about the wieght that they use.
    but it is about the muscle mind conection and the VOLUME they put in the muscle..
    Trust me..It works."










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