Allie Holloway/Men’s Health Composite
EB’S ULTIMATE 10 FOR 2019
You’ve always wanted eye-catching biceps and shirt-popping triceps (or is it the other way around?). This month, in the second installment of our yearlong series that’ll get you the specific workout results you want, we sculpt your arms. Next month, we’ll give you more.
It takes longer to master the biceps curl than you think. I’ve been there. Before I was building the arms I wanted, I was making the mistakes guys often make, rocking with my torso and “curling” more with my shoulders than with my guns.
But I’ve spent the past five years working with top trainers and pro athletes and helping clients build a smarter, quicker approach to big arms.
Several secrets are in this month’s training plan, which is inspired by The New Rules of Muscle, my new workout video. You’ll focus on time under tension, slowing your reps to push your muscles to work harder. So get ready to grow your arms—and maybe buy some new tees.
Do this workout twice a week. Train on 3 other days. Do 4 sets of 15 pushups on one day, 4 sets of 10 dumbbell rows per arm the next, and 4 sets of 15 jump squats on the last. Rest all other days.
Prep your arms with 2 sets of 10 reps of each exercise. Rest for 45 seconds after each set. End with 1 minute of jumping jacks.
1. Halfway-Pause Dumbbell Curl
Stand with light dumbbells. Curl them to your chest, then slowly lower them. Pause when your forearms are parallel to the floor. Finish lowering. That’s 1 rep.
2. Slow Close-Grip Pushup
Get in pushup position, hands directly below your shoulders. Lower your torso until your chest is an inch from the floor; take 3 seconds to do this. Press up. That’s 1 rep.
Do 3 sets of each superset.
1a. Half-Kneeling Biceps Curl
Kneel on your shins, thighs perpendicular to the floor. Hold medium-weight dumbbells at your sides, palms facing each other. Curl the right dumbbell toward your chest, rotating your palm as you do. Squeeze, then return to the start. Do 10 reps per arm, alternating between 2 curls on the right and 2 on the left.
Eb says: “Too many guys rock their torsos when curling. Keep your torso steady as you do these.”
1b. Dumbbell JM Press
Lie on your back on a bench, holding dumbbells, arms straight but angled slightly toward your forehead. This is the start. Bend at the elbows and shoulders, lowering the dumbbells until their heads touch your shoulders. Reverse the motion to return the weights to the start. That’s 1 rep; do 10.
2a. Pause Skull-Crusher
Lie on your back on a bench, holding dumbbells directly over your shoulders. This is the start. Bend at the elbows, lowering the dumbbells toward your head without moving your upper arms. Pause for 1 second when the dumbbells nearly touch your shoulders, then return to the start. That’s 1 rep; do 10.
2b. Pause-and-Rotate Hammer Curl
Kneel on your shins, thighs perpendicular to the floor. Hold medium-weight dumbbells at your sides, palms facing each other. Curl both dumbbells toward your chest, palms still facing each other. Lower the weights until your forearms are parallel to the floor, then rotate the dumbbells so your palms face the ceiling.Pause, rotate the dumbbells so your palms face each other again, then lower them toward the floor. That’s 1 rep; do 8.
3a. Spider Curl
Set an adjustable bench to a 30 degree incline. Lie facedown on the bench. Your chest should be just off it. Hold a medium-weight dumbbell in your right hand, arm straight, palm facing left. Curl the weight to your chest, then lower it with control. That’s 1 rep; do 8 per arm.
Eb says: “Don’t start swinging your upper arm; keep it stationary throughout.”
3b. Kneeling Pause Kickback
Hold light dumbbells at your sides. Kneel on your shins and bend at the waist. Keep your upper arms parallel to the floor. Moving only at the elbows, press the weights back until your arms are straight. Hold for 2 seconds, then lower. That’s 1 rep; do 8.
Want more muscle-building workouts like this one? Check out the first Ultimate 10 program, or pick up Eb’s new workout video, The New Rules of Muscle, for exercises like this one:
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