Not long ago I did an article on training biceps for size. One thing I purposely left off that article was the actual key for getting big biceps. It is something advanced trainers know (or should know) and beginners mostly do not know. In fact, this key will come as a huge surprise to many people. The key to getting huge arms is to not ignore your triceps.
The Anatomy of the Arms
The “arms” are really an illusion when viewed with the human eye. They really consist of the biceps, triceps and, in small part, the deltoids. What is commonly referred to as the biceps is really a two headed muscle. It is made up of the long head and the short head. At the rear of the arm is the a muscle with three heads–the triceps. The triceps have a long head, a lateral head and a medial head.
The triceps goes under the biceps as can be seen in the picture to the left. It actually pushes the biceps muscle up to make it appear bigger. This means that the triceps is directly responsible for the biceps appearing large. Remember how I said above that the arms are really an illusion? This is why. When the triceps get bigger they force the biceps to appear bigger. This creates the illusion of very large arms. While so many think of the arms as just the biceps, it is quite obvious that ignoring the triceps will be detrimental to the appearance of the biceps. You can learn more about this here.
Training the Arms for Size
There is still a debate over whether or not you need an arm day in order to gain size. I have found an approach that has actually worked for me (and my arms are extremely stubborn) that I want to share with you. When I was preparing for my first contest I was given this approach by my trainer and it worked so well that I have shared it here a few times. It involves training the arms 3 times in a week in the following manner. You have to do the work to get the big arms.
First train your biceps with your back. Go for a pump. That means keep the weight a little lower and the reps a little higher. Focus on pushing blood into the muscle. It is going to hurt, but this is very important for you to do. You cannot wimp out. Get the biggest pump you can.
You will then want to train your triceps with your chest. Again, go for a pump. Use less weight and higher reps. Focus on getting blood into the muscle. Push through the discomfort. Get a huge pump.
Finally, give one day to the arms themselves. Train the biceps and triceps together. On this day blast the hell out of the arms. Go at them with the heaviest weight you can push using reasonable form. Grind out every last repetition you can with some heavy weight.
For some reason having a pump day and a heavy day each week does wonders for the muscle growth.
Tips for Arm Size
Getting big biceps can happen via the above tips and the following tips as well.
Big Biceps with Fat Gripz
Use Fat Gripz. In addition to the advice given above, it is smart to use either a thick bar or some Fat Gripz when training your arms. Using Fat Gripz will improve the strength of your arms overall.
Big Biceps via Forearms
Train your forearms. Don't neglect the forearms if you want beefy arms. Again, use Fat Gripz and your forearms will get scorched during standard training.
Big Biceps via Leaner Body
Get leaner. Focus on losing some body fat and your arms will look even bigger and more defined.
Big Biceps via Focus
Focus on the arms for 2 to 3 months. Make sure that you stay very intense when working the arms. It will be adviseable to drop the intensity on other body parts while focused on the arms. They won't shrink, I promise.
These tips are the key to getting big biceps. Use them to your advantage and watch your guns grow! Big biceps here we come!