The Dragon’s Monster Mass Building Training Series continues this week with what may be the most intense workout yet. Today, we focus on the back and the biceps. That’s right. Consider this week’s post to be a “twofer”! This is easily one of my favorite workouts because of the insane pump that I get after doing it. Minutes after you finish you will probably curse me. Weeks after, you will thank me. Let’s get started.
Besides all of the great health benefits of having a strong back, an added bonus is the much admired “V” shape you will have. Combined with a trim waist, a barn door back will make you look like you have wings. It is a real head turner. Back workouts are typically divided into upper and lower, with most of the focus being placed on the upper back. Let’s take a look at the muscles that encompass the back:
- Trapezius: This large diamond shaped muscle is mostly trained with the shoulders and has been already covered here in part II.
- Latissimus Dorsi: Translated as “broadest muscle of the back”, the Latissimus Dorsi (AKA “lats”) are the key to having a wide wingspan. They run parallel to and outside of the Trapezius muscle. They are large and mostly flat and are responsible for extending the arms outward and upward. The most effective exercises for these muscles are pull-ups, lat pull-downs and bent over rows.
- Teres Major & Teres Minor: This is an “unofficial” third part to the upper back. These “synergists” (AKA helpers) are responsible for rotating and helping the lats to move the arms outward from the body.
The Dragon’s Bicep Workout immediately follows the Back Workout. During your back workout your biceps will be getting a warm-up for the work that is to come. They will become a bit “pre-fatigued” by the pull-ups and close grip lat pull-downs. By the time you end the Bicep Workout you will definitely feel a deep full burn. Now let’s learn a bit about them:
- Biceps: Biceps are rated the number one muscle that people associate with strength. They are the epitome of “manliness”. When you ask someone to “make a muscle” what do they do? They show off their arms. The key to obtaining bowling balls for biceps is to hit them from multiple angles and focus on a wide variety of rep ranges. Let’s get right into it after this brief introduction to the Biceps muscle. The Biceps Brachii or simply, “Biceps” is a two headed muscle that stretches from the shoulder to the elbow on the front side of the arm. It’s primary function is to bring the lower arm toward the body (flexing). Take a look….
Now, let’s leave the classroom and go to the gym so we can do today’s workout.
The Dragon’s Beastly Back & Biceps Workout:
- Pull-Ups: 3 Sets x 10 – 12 reps
- Seated “Lat” Pull-downs: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets x 8 – 10 reps
- Close-grip / underhand “Lat” Pull-downs: 3 Sets x 10 reps
- Bent over Barbell Rows: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets x 8 – 10 reps
- Bent over 1 arm Dumbbell Rows: 4 Sets x 10 reps
- Standing EZ-Bar Curls: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets x 8 – 10 reps
- Concentration Curls: 3 Sets x 5 – 7 reps
- Hammer Curls: 3 Sets x 10 reps
- Chin-Ups: 2 Sets until failure
- Pull-Ups: 1 Set x 10 reps
- Seated Cable Pull: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets x 8 – 10 reps
- T-Bar Rows: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets 5 – 7 reps
- Lying Dumbbell Pullovers: 3 Sets x 10 reps
- Bent Over Reverse Flys: 4 Sets x 10 reps
- Seated EZ-Bar Curls: 1 Warm-up Set x 10 reps. 4 Working Sets x 8 – 10 reps
- Standing Dumbbell Curls: 3 Sets x 10 reps
- Seated Negative Rep Curls: 3 sets x 5 – 7 “negative” reps*
- Chin-Ups: 3 sets 8 – 10 reps
*Negative Repetitions: Start at the contracted part of the rep (the end). Slowly lower your arm to the beginning position. Count very slowly as you lower your arm! Try to make it to a count of 50 for each rep.
Because this workout is lengthier and more intense than the previous ones it is important that you eat well so that you will have substantial fuel for both parts. Eat no more than an hour and a half and make sure you get plenty of complex carbohydrates. As always, be strict about your repetitions. Correct form far outweighs the amount of weight that you lift. No more time to waste. Go train hard and remember…
Dream Fit. Live Fit.