YouTuber Joe Fazer used to struggle with building muscle in his arms, putting in hours of training without necessarily understanding how to get the best results. In a new video, he explains the things he used to do wrong, and the training methods which he has found helped him the most personally.
Joe’s biggest mistake, he recalls, was wasting time and energy over-training his arms, which not only proved unproductive, but also affected his other workouts.
“I was dedicating a whole day every week to just training arms… but my arms didn’t grow,” he says. “You can only train your arms so much. I’d go in and do five different exercises on my biceps, five exercises on my triceps. The excessive amount of volume I used to do with them on my old arm days would not give out any substantial rewards compared to if you only did about two or three exercises in total, like what I do now.”
Instead of only training arms on one special day, Joe began to include “mini” arm sessions comprising just two exercises at the end of his other full body workouts. “This change from one large day a week to three mini days a week increased my arm size more than ever, in such a small period of time.”
There were two isolation exercises which Joe credits with helping him achieve the most results. He trained his biceps with barbell curls, starting off doing 3 sets of 8 reps using just the 20-kg/44-pound bar, and incrementally adding weight. “It’s very easy to see how you’re progressing with this,” he says. “There was a big correlation between the stronger I got in my curls, and the size of my biceps.”
To build his triceps, Joe used the close grip bench press, following the same routine of 3 x 8 and adding 2.5 kgs / 5 pounds over time. He complemented these exercises with tricep extensions.
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“One thing you need to not underestimate is the actual workout before the arm training,” he says. “Heavy compound lifts such as the deadlift, the benching, the pullup, I believe they increased the size of my arms. The isolation helped, but it’s all about having big compound movements. When I started going them, that was when I noticed the size changed drastically.”
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