For many years now, the flexed biceps have been the symbol of strength and power among gym goers.
Nowadays everybody flexes their biceps because it’s Friday and Instagram waits for no one. You know you’ve done a #FlexFriday pic. Don’t deny it.
Regardless of your reasoning, you’re reading this because building biceps is a priority to you and this four week workout will help you stretch that measuring tape a little more and make your sleeves a little tighter.
Reaching Your Biceps Peak Potential
There will be two workouts for you to do on this program.
One is the main workout that you will do on its own day or with triceps. The second workout is a smaller session that you will do after your back training.
Your biceps will already be active since back requires pulling, which the biceps will naturally be involved in. As long as they’re working, we might as well take advantage of the opportunity to tack on additional volume.
The Featured Peaking Biceps Workout
|1. Concentration Curl||3||12, 10, 8|
|2. Strict Barbell Curl||4||12, 10, 8, 6|
|3. Hammer Dumbbell Curl||3||8, 10, 12|
|4. One Arm Preacher Curl Machine||3||20 Each|
Many people use these as a finisher but I believe this is a great exercise to start your workout with. It’s as much of an isolation move for the biceps as you can get. Your upper arm is braced so you won’t be able to cheat.
When you lift the dumbbell up, turn that wrist so the pinky is higher. This really emphasizes the contraction of the biceps. Hold that contraction for a second before lowering the weight all the way back down to the stretched position. Add weight each set as the reps decrease. Rest for 45 seconds between sets.
One more tip. Before you start, figure out which arm is the one you need to work on more. It might be smaller or not as strong. This is the one you start with. Doing this when your energy is high will help you focus more on turning that weakness into a strength.
Strict Barbell Curl
Lifting one object with both arms means you can use more weight. Now that your biceps are warmed up and you have that all-important mind/muscle connection, we can hit them hard.
You can either use a straight bar with your hands already in the supinated position or an EZ-curl bar that places your hands in an anatomically friendly position. That is a personal preference.
As for the movement itself, you need to be as strict with your form as possible. You shouldn’t swing the bar up at all and all the work should be done by the biceps. If you need to, place your back against a wall and perform the competition strict curl a la CT Fletcher.
With these I want a three second eccentric phase for each rep. As you lower the bar, count “one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three”. After your set is over, rest for 60 seconds.
Hammer Dumbbell Curl
You might be thinking to yourself that this is going to work forearms too. It will but the brachialis is important to work as well. Simply put, doing these will add size to those upper arms.
At this point we also need to hit the biceps with something that they’re not expecting. So with this phase of the workout, we’re going to start with the heaviest weight and go lower as the reps increase.
Also, you’re going to perform each of these sets in a different way. For the first set, you’re going to alternate arms like you would normally.
For the second set, you’re going to perform all the reps with one arm before switching to the other. Remember to start with the arm you perceive to be smaller or weaker.
When it comes to the last set, you’re going to perform the reps with both arms at the same time. This will be the last set and you’re going to be tempted to let momentum take over. Fight that temptation and control your reps. If you’re having trouble doing so, go with lower weight. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.
One Arm Preacher Curl Machine
We’re going to finish this main workout as we started it, with a single arm isolation move. Using a machine allows you to concentrate on the muscle you’re working. It also allows you to keep tension on the biceps throughout the entire rep.
Much like the concentration curl, the preacher machine curl positions your upper arm against something solid so it can’t move. This takes the isolation to a new level.
Instead of doing traditional reps, we’re going to do Every Minute On the Minute (EMOM) style training. You’re going to start with the weaker arm and lift for 20 seconds. As soon as that time elapses, switch arms and lift for 20 seconds with the other one. When you finish, rest for the remainder of that minute.
When the next minute starts, you go again. Keep in mind that one bicep is resting while the other is working so it will actually be resting for 40 seconds. So they should be able to handle this without any issue. As for the weight, go with moderate weight that you can control. You shouldn’t reach failure with either arm until the final set.
The Peaking Bicep Pump Back Day Finisher
This workout is the one you’ll do after your back training. There should be a minimum of 72 hours between these two workouts so there’s enough time for recovery. 96 hours would be better if your split can allow it.
|1. Lying Rope Cable Curl||-||100 Total|
Lying Cable Curl with a Rope – 100 Total Reps
I love these for three reasons. One, they’re a machine move that provides constant tension throughout the reps. Two, you’re lying on the floor so cheating isn’t an option. Three, the rope attachment allows you more flexibility with the wrists so you can maximize the contraction at the top and the stretch at the bottom.
When you curl the weight up, pull the rope so you can squeeze the biceps. As you go down, let the rope ends come back together.
If you’ve followed my articles in the past then you might know about “The 100”. If not, here’s how it works.
You start with moderate weight and go until failure. Count the reps. You should reach failure between 15 and 25 reps. If you fail too soon, you went too heavy. If you can get more than 25, add weight on the stack. Take the number you reach and subtract it from 100. That’s the amount of time you rest.
Example: 100 – 25 reps = 75 seconds rest.
After that time passes, pick up where you left off and keep counting. Once you reach failure again, subtract the new number from 100.
Example: 100 - 45 total reps = 55 seconds rest.
Repeat this until you’ve completed 100 reps. As you progress and complete more reps, the time you rest decreases. So it will get more challenging and the burn will be more intense. By the time you get to the end your rest periods will be 5-10 seconds. The pump you achieve will make this discomfort worth it.
Next time you do this, try to complete the 100 faster than you did the last time.