prefix='og: fb: article:'> April 2017 - Strong Muscle

Poundstone Power: Eat Clean, Get Jacked

Nutrition tips from the strongest man with a six-pack Derek Poundstone

Bent-Over Barbell Row vs. Old Fashioned T-Bar Row

Both moves work the back, but which move is better at targeting the lower lats

7 Tips From a World Class Squatter

Inflate your wheels with these strategies from a man who specializes in squatting bar-bending loads

6 Tips for a Ripped Six-Pack

Stop neglecting your abs training. These six strategies will help you retool your training to get the midsection you want

4 Moves to Bring Your Biceps to New Heights

Add some elevation to your cannons with these targeted bicep exercises

4 Top Notch Exercises For Building Dreamland Calves

Highly Effective Exercises For Those Who Want Bigger Calves

Many bodybuilders already know that to build a well-shaped physique, you need to not only train your upper body but also your legs. So, it means that utilizing exercises such as deadlifts and squats are important to achieve it

Some people are only doing exercises that target the legs and completely neglect their calf muscles. And by neglecting to develop their calf muscles, they build legs that resemble that of a chicken. If that’s the case, then you should incorporate some exercises that target the calves specifically

Donkey Machine Calf Raise

While this exercise isn’t as popular as it was three or four decades ago, the truth is that this exercise is one of the best when it comes to activating your calf muscles. One of the primary reasons why this exercise isn’t as popular as before is because that donkey calf raise machines are rarely used today

But if there is such a machine in your gym, then you should definitely try it. If not, then you can try it by asking somebody to sit down on your back

Start this exercise by bending your trunk forward until it reaches a 90-degree angle. If you do this exercise with a person, then ask the person to sit on your back. If you do the exercise with the donkey calf raise machine, then you should already be underneath the weights

Raise yourself by using your calves. Perform this process until you complete your first set

Leg Press Machine Calf Raises

This exercise is extremely good when you need to hit the entire calf muscle. Begin the exercise by sitting at the leg press machine and position your toes on the bottom edge of the foot plate. Like any form of calf raises, press with your toes while concentrating on your calves and return to the starting point

Make sure to perform this exercise in the full range of motion so that your calves would be worked even more

Jumping Rope

While jumping rope is used more for cardio than for training the calves, it’s still an effective way to strengthen your calves. For best results, it’s recommended to perform this exercise to warm up or do as the last exercise for your workout

Everything you need to do is simple. Just pick up a jumping rope in your hands and jump with each turn of the rope. If doing this gets too boring, then you can try some of the variations from the video above

Standing Calf Raises

You can perform this exercise while using a machine, barbell, dumbbells, kettlebells, or plates. Either way is fine as long as you use appropriate weights and do plenty of repetitions

If you’re using anything other than a standing calf raise machine, then begin the exercise by picking up the weights you decided to use, stand on an elevated platform like a block, training step, etc., with your toes. Raise yourself up as if you were standing on your toes and lower yourself again

Use these exercises and you should see how your calves grow bigger. Furthermore, you should start feeling them better while training and flexing. If you combine the exercises above and use them to create a “calf day”, then your calves will be sure to grow. And if they’re a weak area of yours, having a dedicated calf day would help turn them into your strongest assests

Why You Can't Do a Pull-Up

The Problem

Pull-ups are one of those ubiquitous tests of strength, but a move that can humble even the toughest of men. Most who are unable to do this particular feat think the answer lies in more weights. And while your lats, biceps, and traps are doing work during this move, the real answer lies in your serratus anterior (SA), the muscle that holds your shoulder blade against your rib cage. If your SA isn’t working correctly, you are setting up the other 17 muscles that attach to your scapula to fail. When the scapula is out of position, you are putting yourself at a mechanical disadvantage. In other words, it’s not strength, it’s positioning

As a physical therapist, I am always amazed to see how much strength is trapped in the body because bones are out of position. When I put the bones back in to the right position, the muscles are at the right length, and all of a sudden, the body moves better. You may be strong, but you are always stronger in balance and in alignment

This is especially true for the strength and balance required to do a pull-up. Put the scapula in the right position, and your lower trap, biceps, and lats will work much better. With the scapula out of position, you are asking your teres major and minor (which are tiny muscles) and only a portion of your lat to lift your entire body. No wonder you can’t get your chin up to the bar

The Solution

You need to start releasing muscles that attach to your shoulder. Modern life is about texting, working on the computer, and stuffing yourself into airplane seats built for 12 year old kids. The result is a forward head and rounded shoulders and ultimately, a shoulder blade that is constantly drifting forward and up. Gravity exacerbates the situation, pulling you down and further out of position

Here's what you need to do. Get a lacrosse ball and then get to work. First release your pec muscles, then the teres (those little guys on the outside of your scapula that are working so hard to get you over that bar), and finally the upper trap. For the pec and teres, place the lacrosse ball on a tender spot and lean up against a wall. Lean a tolerable amount of weight onto the ball, then move your arm back and forth. For the trap, you want to find a bar bell, get underneath it so your upper trap is, well, trapped underneath it, shrug up and depress your shoulder. For each release, you will know it is working when your body starts to melt into the lacrosse ball or barbell

Then I have some strengthening for you to do

1. Lower Trap RDLs: Holding two dumbbells (or a barbell), stand with your weight on your heels and knees slightly bent and forced out. Your feet should be turned out at a 10–15 degree angle. Keep your palms forward, pinch your shoulder blades down and back, and squeeze your glutes. Slowly hinge at the hips, keeping your back flat and shoulder blades down and back

Slide the weights down, keeping them just in front of your shins, but not touching. Go down as far as you can without starting to slouch (ideally a 90-degree angle) then slowly hinge back up to the start position. The weights you use should be light enough that you can maintain good form but heavy enough to challenge you during the exercise

2. Downward Dog Push-Up: In a push-up position, lift hips toward the ceiling forming an upside down V shape. Be sure the back is straight and both legs are straight with the heels touching the floor. Both hands should be splayed and facing outward. With both arms straight, push into the ground so as to open up the armpits

In this position bend at the elbows, lowering your head to the ground, then push back to starting position

3. Scapular Stabilization Push-ups: Place dumbbells on floor, about three inches outside shoulders, turned outward at 45-degree angles. Start in a raised position, abs and glutes engaged, back flat, and head at a neutral position. Punch forward with shoulders to engage serratus anterior

Slowly lower toward floor, stopping when elbows reach a 90-degree angle. Raise to starting position. Repeat

4. Serratus Anterior Stabilization Push-ups: Place dumbbells on floor, about three inches outside shoulders, perpendicular to the body. Start in a raised position, abs and glutes engaged, back flat, and head at a neutral position. Punch forward with shoulders to engage serratus anterior

Slowly lower toward floor, stopping when elbows reach a 90-degree angle. Raise to starting position. Repeat

Jay Cutler's 7 Tips for Building Huge Triceps

 Tri Tip #1

I wasn’t blessed with the greatest genetics for triceps, but I learned to work with my body structure. You have to be open-minded with the exercises you choose. I learned very early that skull-crushers (lying triceps extensions) weren’t the only exercise for tris, contrary to what a lot of people seem to think. Cable movements can be very beneficial for size and shape. It’s just a matter of finding the right position for your body structure and really putting your mind into working the muscle

 Tri Tip #2

For pushdowns, I like to keep my elbow joints working like simple hinges and not put extra pressure on them. What’s great about doing rope pushdowns first is that they really warm up the elbow joints, which, after years of bodybuilding, become very fragile

 Tri Tip #3

Dips are the number-one mass builder for triceps. I don’t like to do them for chest, but that’s just a personal thing. I always feel them the most in my triceps. The muscular development of Olympic gymnasts, who work on rings and parallel bars, proves how effective a dipping movement is for triceps

 Tri Tip #4

I think one-arm pushdowns have really added to my triceps detail and accentuated my horseshoes. I use an underhand grip and start with my hand near the opposite deltoid. Then I pull the handle down across my body. The effect is a cross between a pushdown and a kickback. Single-arm movements are always good for biceps and triceps because you can really focus on the contraction

 Tri Tip #5

One-arm dumbbell extensions hit the long head. This is a fill-in movement that really pumps the area with blood. When the arm is in the up position, only triceps can be used to move the weight. It eliminates the other bodyparts that can creep into lifts like pushdowns and dips

 Tri Tip #6

I stop just short of lockout when doing dumbbell or cambered-bar extensions because, unlike pushdowns, there isn’t as much tension at the lockout. When you’re pushing something down at contraction, there’s tension in your tris, but when you’re holding something up, the contraction is more of a resting point. Bodybuilding training is all about applying maximum tension to your muscles

 Tri Tip #7

The most important thing is to not emphasize lifting heavy. Remember that the elbows are fragile joints. Work the triceps instead of trying to work the weight. I know a lot of guys who try to ego lift and hoist heavy weights, but that’s not what bodybuilding is all about. What matters is how much stress you can apply to the muscles


Rope Pushdowns | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10
Angled-Bar Pushdowns | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10
Two-Arm Dumbbell Extensions | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10
Machine Dips | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10
One-Arm Pushdowns | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10
One-Arm Dumbbell Extensions | SETS: 3 | REPS: 8-10

Do You Get the Most out of Your Chest Workout?

With chest exercises  generally the results are quickly visible. Chest muscles begin to react to any changes in terms of movements, weights and repetitions in a short period of time. So the majority of fitness enthusiasts are eager when it comes to chest training. But what if we say that by paying a little more attention to your chest workout program, you can achieve even better results

?How to make sure your chest training is effective

Any combination of standard chest exercises will give you results that will satisfy you for a while. But if you don’t pay attention to some important aspects, as time goes by, there will be a moment when you will notice that your form isn’t complete. Here’s how to avoid that moment and get the most out of your chest workout

Don’t neglect the upper chest muscles

To achieve a solid shape of the upper body, your chest training should cover the entire chest muscle group. This can be easily done by changing the position on bench when you perform the exercises. Exercises that are performed on a tilt bench target the upper chest, and exercises performed downward on a tilt bench are targeting the lower chest. Note that it is impossible to isolate the upper and lower chest like you isolate an individual muscles. There is only one chest muscle visible, but it form depends on what exercises you perform

In any case, don’t expect to have a more visible upper chest muscle after just a few trainings on a tilt bench. In your training plan you should include exercises for both parts of the muscle and stick with them for a longer period of time. Don’t do the exercises by the same order, that way the part of the muscle that you train last will be less developed than the other one. This is because you work on it when you are already exhausted. Changing the sequence of your exercises will get you the best results and equally shaped muscle. Of course, you’ll need to take care of your body fats in order for your progress to be visible

Don’t waste the whole training on the bench press exercises

Bench press is an excellent exercise that can be perform in many different ways, with a bar and dumbbells. However, all these movements are similar and based on pushing the weights, not giving you a full chest training. If you train exclusively for power (power lifting), then bench press exercises will do the job. But if you want to build muscle mass and shape your chest muscles, then you have to include some more exercises that will activate your chest from different angles activating multiple muscle fibers, which will improve overall muscle growth. Dumbbell flyes and cable crossover are a great example of exercises for this purpose

Don’t overdo the machine exercises

One of the most common mistakes that are made with chest training is forcing the machine exercises. These exercises certainly have their advantages. If you want to get the most out of your chest training you should focus on bar exercises, exercises with dumbbells, also include pec deck and cable crossover. This way you will strenghten your stabilizer muscles which are activated only with free weight exercises. Machines also have a movement trajectory that doesn’t allow you to activate the chest muscles from multiple angles. The best option is probably to do the machine exercises at the end of your chest training. That way you can complement your training with higher weights, which is easily done with machines. If you are tired enough you can end the series without risking possible injury

Focus on doing the exercises right, not on the weights

The right way of exercising is the most important part of training, particularly when you do your chest exercises. This helps you to get the most out of the training and also reduces the risk of injury. Unfortunately, most of us tend to workout with higher weights, and thus often lose focus on doing the exercise right. Let your unrealistically high aspirations and your ego out of the gym and exercise with weights your body can bear. Concentrate on doing the exercises properly and on contracting the right part of your chest muscles. Increase the weight amount only when you succeed to accomplish the desired number of reps and sets. If you don’t have a personal trainer, ask someone to watch while you’re doing the exercises and point out if you make any mistakes. This is the only way you will get the maximum out of your chest training experience


We’ve all tried a lot of different exercises, but some of them didn’t quite worked as we thought they were. The most challenging part of our body that needs most of our attention is the abdominal part. It’s not easy at all to remove the fat that is gathered in your abdominal area. But we give you 9 types of exercises that will ease your job and make you burn that fat. All you need to do is follow the instructions and do regularly cardio exercises at least 3 times a week


Front Plank

The targets of this exercise is the transverse abdominal. It is an easy exercise that you can do any time of the day. You should start on your knees and hands and contract the belly and back muscles. Get in a position where you are on your forearms while extending the legs out behind you, and you should end up resting on the balls of your feet

Remember to keep your hips up, the back straight and your neck relaxed. Keep this position for 3 seconds and then return to the initial position. You should repeat this 10 times

Butterfly Crunch

As you already know, the target of the crunches are the so famous called “six-pack” or the rectus abdominus. Start this by positioning your body in a lying position on your back. You need to place the soles close to your body and bend the knees to the side. Put your hands behind your head and the elbows in the same line with the ears

The back should lie flat on the ground and thus contract the belly muscles, breathe in and curl your chest up a few inches off the floor toward the legs. Lower to return to the initial position. Repeat this exercise 10 times

Side to Side

While doing this exercise you are targeting your obliques. The first thing to do is lie on the floor. Then you need to bend the knees while your feet are flat on the floor. Then put your arms by the sides of your body. Remember to breathe in and contract the belly muscles while sliding the right hand toward the right foot. You need to keep your head and neck aligned, and the lower back pressed to the floor. Return to the initial position, switch sides and do 15 repetitions



This is another exercise that will target your obliques. Lie on the floor and put your hands behind your head. Then tighten your abs, elevate the left knee and touch it with your right elbow. Return to the initial position and do the same with the opposite leg and elbow. Switch sides for 15 reps, in 2 sets, but don’t forget to engage the belly muscles in a smooth motion

Fingers to Toes

Put your legs straight and extended towards the ceiling. Your arms should be put by the body that is in a lying position. This exercise is to target your rectus abdominus

The back should lie flat on the ground and thus contract the belly muscles, breathe in and curl your chest up a few inches off the floor toward the legs. Lower to return to the initial position. Repeat this exercise 10 times

The Top 4 Leg-Day Machine Exercises

Free-weight exercises are important. But you can get more out of your leg session by adding machine exercises that will help you meet your physique goals

It's possible to complete a leg workout without a machine movement, but it's pretty darn hard. If you're working your leg muscles hard, you can get so tired you can hardly stand up. So as you're finishing up leg day, throw in a couple of machine exercises that put your leg muscles under additional stress without you having to worry so much about form or balance

Here are my top four leg-day machine exercises

Squat Machine

About the Move: Few machines simulate the movement of an actual free-weight squat as well as the squat machine. The squat is one of the best thigh-and-glute builders and should be a staple of every leg routine. If you have a tendency to round your back with the barbell, the squat machine can help you learn proper form. So it's a good way to learn squats, as well as a good, safe way to the end your leg day when your legs are screaming at you to stop

Why We Like It: Standard squat machines have an inherent advantage over the Smith machine because the pathway isn't strictly limited to the vertical plane; with the squat machine, you can achieve additional horizontal movement. The shoulder padding also comes in handy, spreading the contact across a larger surface area than a Smith can

The larger footplate on the squat machine gives you room to use a number of foot positions to easily shift emphasis from the quads to the glutes and hamstrings. The machine is also good for intensity-boosting techniques. For example

Paused reps at the bottom of the movement
One-and-a-halfs when you go only halfway down every other rep to get 20 peak contractions for each 10-rep set
Rest-pauses, allowing you to go quickly into and out of the start position
Eccentric/isometric machine pause squats

Hack Squat

About the Move: The hack-squat machine positions your body about halfway between a standing squat machine and a lying squat machine, supporting your body to protect your lower back. EMG analysis shows that, similar to squats, the hack machine hits your vastus lateralis and vastus intermedius. But the hack does a better job of hitting the inner thigh adductor brevis and magnus.[1] It also provides a greater range of motion around the knee joint

Why We Like It: Like the squat machine, the hack squat's large footplate offers a wide range of foot positions. This allows you to shift the emphasis from inner to outer thighs, and from the quads to glutes and hamstrings—though the depth of the squat affects emphasis as well

To complement your full-range training, use 1.25 times your 1RM do half squats over just the top portion of the ROM sets. Do this for 3 sets of 6 to challenge your quads

Leg Press

About the Move: The leg-press machine is a quad machine. By creating almost a right angle between your torso and legs, the leg press decreases the ROM around your hips, diminishing hamstrings and glute activation and putting the load right on your quads. Using a lower foot placement will increase your quad workout even more

Why We Like It: Once again, the machine's large footplate allows you to reposition your feet to adjust muscle-group stimulation. One of my favorite leg-press techniques is best saved for the end of the workout. Your goal is to do 4 dropsets. Start with your 10RM, do 10 reps, then remove about 20 percent of the weight (10 percent if you're more advanced) and do another 10. Keep repeating this until only a single plate remains on each side

As with all exercises, make sure you do the leg press with the proper form

Butt Blaster

About the Move: For some lame reason, the butt-blaster machine has been pigeonholed as a "woman's exercise." But men who fall for this miss out on the opportunity to do some major glute work. Unlike the leg press, the butt-blaster machine works through a wide ROM around the hip joint while keeping your knee relatively stable. This helps to focus the movement on your glutes and upper hamstrings

Why We Like It: It's easy to overload your glutes on the butt blaster, and since you don't have to balance a load, you can push hard to failure. In fact, post-failure techniques like dropsets are super simple to implement on a butt blaster. Try alternating legs without stopping to rest between sets. It'll add intensity and make you happy leg day is almost done

3 Bench-Press Errors And How To Fix Them

Seasoned lifters know it's not "how much you bench" that matters, but just "how." If you want to watch your numbers—and your upper body—grow for years, rather than flaming out in pain and disappointment, you need to be ruthless about your technique

You're Flaring Your Elbows At The Wrong Time

Some amount of elbow flare is inevitable in a powerlifting-style bench press. The issue is when it happens. If you start the press with your elbows flared, your lift is doomed from the start. It's also a very inefficient way to move weight. If your elbows flare at the end of the lift, that's a sign that your shoulders are losing their stable position in the joint, which is just as bad

What to do instead: Both Mike and Alan are insistent that correct elbow position starts with your upper back

"We want to keep our sternum high, shoulders tucked behind us," Mike says. "This is not only going to stabilize your shoulder, but it's going to allow for proper pressing using the proper muscles: our chest, shoulders, and triceps, while keeping the bar in the perfect path"

How to nail it: Drilling that technique is part of the answer. So is doing a lot of band pull-aparts

"Start from a width the same as your bench press," Alan says. "Pull until it touches your chest. This should give you the sensation of pulling your shoulder blades together and keeping a tight upper back to support you while you bench. You can also do this with a cable machine"

Your Leg Drive Is Driving In The Wrong Direction

Mike says leg drives can be a bit "overrated," and you only need to watch a few online PR videos to see why. Plenty of lifters act like the legs are lifting the bar, when it's more like they're just pushing you into a position where your real pressing muscles can take over

If your butt is coming off the bench on max-effort reps—or any reps at all—then you're guilty here

"This is incorrect, inefficient, and if you're a powerlifter, it's a red light," Alan says

What to do instead: The goal with a leg drive is to push you onto your traps and the solid foundation of your upper back. This requires a more horizontal angle. Rather than driving your feet into the ground and keeping your butt up, drive your feet into the front of your shoe, and drive your toes into the ground as if you were doing a leg extension out in front of you

How to nail it: Mike gleaned this tip from all-time bench great Eric Spoto, and says it worked wonders for him and countless others

"Once you unrack the weight, flex your legs about 80 percent. You're forcing toes through the front of your shoe, knees out, flexing those quads," he says. "Once you're on your way up, after the bar leaves your chest, flex that extra 20 percent and drive your legs 100 percent as hard as you can to keep that stability and keep yourself driving back onto your traps"

You're Pressing In A Straight Line

Powerlifting is all about efficiency, right? So why not pick the shortest and straightest route from chest to lockout? Because, unlike the squat and deadlift, that isn't actually the way to get the most out of your "main movers" of the lift: the chest, shoulders, and upper back

What to do instead: To make the most of your strength and avoid anatomical vulnerabilities, you'll need to press with a slight arc. After the bar touches on your chest, press back over your face and toward the rack. If you've got your back locked down tight and leg drive dialed in, this should happen naturally

The workout to build bigger arms

The main way we know to build muscle is by lifting heavy weights, but we assume you’ve done enough of that already; and if your arms are still skinny, you need to try another method

One of these is focusing on the eccentric (lowering) portion of a rep, which causes more damage to the muscle (a necessary component of making it grow) and is associated with greater rebuilding of that muscle. Another is isometric holds—stopping at the hardest point in a rep’s range of motion. Finally, there’s volume: Lots of sets and reps have been shown to exhaust the muscles like nothing else and force them to grow. Hey, we can’t explain exactly why it works, but at least we know it doesIt doesn’t get any more old school than this, a bar above you and you pulling yourself up until you can’t pull yourself up anymore. Pull-ups are great for back, shoulders, arms and chest. You can make a giant set consisting of lat pulldowns followed by pull-ups. That’ll hit your upper body like crazy. Basically, combine pull-ups with any kind of upper body exercise for more bang for your workout buck

Complete the workout once per week, resting at least a day before and after any other upper-body training. Perform the pairs (marked “A” and “B”) as supersets: You’ll do one set of A, then a set of B, rest, then repeat until all the prescribed sets are done. Perform exercises 3 and 4 as conventional straight sets

Dumbbell Crush-Grip Preacher Curl

Sets: 4 Reps: 10–12 Rest: 0 sec
Sit at a preacher bench with a dumbbell in each hand. The top of the pad should come up to your armpits. Push the ends of the dumbbells together hard so you feel tension in your arms, shoulders, and chest. Curl the weights while maintaining this tension

Close-Grip Bench Press

Sets: 4 Reps: 20 Rest: 2 min
Lie on a flat bench and grasp the bar with hands shoulder-width apart. Take the bar out of the rack and lower it to your chest before pressing it back up

Incline Dumbbell Curl

Sets: 4 Reps: 5 reps/5-second hold Rest: 0 sec
Set an adjustable bench to a 45- to 60-degree incline and sit back against it with a very light dumbbell in each hand. Allow your arms to hang. Without moving your upper arms, curl the weights. After each rep, lower the weights until your arms are bent 90 degrees. Hold this position for five seconds. Repeat the process for five total reps and five holds— that’s one set

Lying Triceps Extension

Sets: 4 Reps: 12 Rest: 2 min
Lie on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand and press the weights over your chest. With palms facing each other, bend your elbows and lower the weights to the sides of your face. Keep your elbows pointing toward the ceiling

Barbell Curl

Sets: 1 Reps: 100 Rest: As little as possible
Hold an empty bar with hands shoulder-width apart. Perform 10 curls, taking three seconds to lower each rep. Immediately afterward, perform 10 more reps, taking only one second to lower the bar. Alternate this pattern—slow and fast negatives—until you reach 100 reps

Band Pushdown

Sets: 1 Reps: 150 Rest: As little as possible
Attach a light band to a sturdy overhead object and grasp an end with both hands. Brace your upper arms at your sides and extend your elbows to lockout

6 of The Best Old School Bodybuilding Exercises

When talking about modern bodybuilding the conversation quickly tends to steer in the “yeah, but Arnold and those 70’s Gold’s Gym guys were the REAL deal” direction of endless “Pumping Iron” nostalgia

It’s not that there’s something wrong with today’s bodybuilding it’s just that seeing guys like Phil Heath working on various fancy isolation machines, we tend to have fond memories of the old school exercises — before everybody had a 4-in-1 exercise machine collecting dust in a corner of their living room

So for this occasion, let’s look at some of the old school exercises that got Arnold Schwarzenegger to Mr. Olympia and Lou Ferrigno to Incredible Hulk


Let’s continue this “feel good” vibe with some good old-fashioned curls. Barbell curls, dumbbell curls, concentration curls — the secret to Gold’s gym era guns was a simple one. They just picked up heavy things and curled. Barbell variations work both of your arms at the same time, dumbbell ones work each arm individually, but the real trick is in the concentration curls. They really put an emphasis on pumping your muscle. The best way to do this is to sit on a bench and place your elbow on the inner side of your knee and start curling

Arnold Press

No point in stating the obvious, but as you already know the Governator himself used this exercise to pump his shoulders. It’s a great exercise because as you rotate the dumbbells you work all three heads of your shoulder. The anterior, posterior, and the medial heads. Don’t force heavy weight on this one, instead use medium resistance and go for a high rep range instead

Bar Row

Do you want a cobra head-like back? T-bar rows are the solution you need. If you don’t have a rowing station, take a standard barbell and stick one end somewhere in a corner and load the other with the desired weight. Now grab a handlebar from a triceps extension cable and start rowing. This will add to the overall thickness of your back


Sometimes the easiest solution is the best one. Why do fancy stuff when dropping down and banging out some push-up reps is just as an effective. Now, it should be clear that even though push-ups are great for developing your chest, they won’t build you a bodybuilder’s chest all on their own. Do a set of a dumbbell flat bench chest flys and superset it with elevated push-ups. Now that’s a killer exercise that will give you a barrel chest


Time to finally hit the legs. Old school guys kept it simple, barbell squats, hack squats and leg extensions. Not much to say about the squat, it’s one of the basics in lower body strength and muscle building. Start with a lighter weight and gradually increase it until you can squat 405lbs while maintaining a casual smirk on your face, like Franco Columbu in the picture above


It doesn’t get any more old school than this, a bar above you and you pulling yourself up until you can’t pull yourself up anymore. Pull-ups are great for back, shoulders, arms and chest. You can make a giant set consisting of lat pulldowns followed by pull-ups. That’ll hit your upper body like crazy. Basically, combine pull-ups with any kind of upper body exercise for more bang for your workout buck

Arnold’s Classic Chest Workout

Mr. Universe, Mr. Olympia, Conan, Terminator, Governor…does he really need an introduction? Arnold Schwarzenegger is the most well-known bodybuilder of all time, an honor he will no doubt still hold a century from now. Arnold’s two best body parts were pecs and biceps, these are the two tank top showboats, the muscles that everyone compares with a bodybuilder’s physique. Arnold’s chest has inspired awe and infamy in the heart of many men, widely considered the best ever

But how did he get his chest bulging from every angle along with a solid aesthetically pleasing look down to science? Well follow us, let’s let Arnold describe how he built it with a classic quote and a
Arnold About His Favorite Chest Workout

“I always like to start my chest routine with barbell bench presses. I’ll use the pyramid principle, starting with a lighter weight and going to a heavy weight for six reps. After that, I’ll do barbell presses on an incline to hit the upper chest. These I like to do for 10 to 15 reps and get a good pump. After that, I do dumbbell flyes on a flat bench to stretch out my pecs and hit the inner part. And finally I’ll end my routine with dips, and I lean into these a lot. This also stretches out my pecs and get a lot of blood in there. Dips also focus more on my lower pecs

Arnold trained chest 2-3 times a week, and he always workout Back & Chest on the same day. Here is a list of the chest exercises Arnold used to become the King

Arnold Chest Workout

Bench Presses: SET 5 // REPS 20-6

Arnold starts with a proper warm up and then proceed to add weights and decrease repetitions over 5 sets. He consistently kept his elbows well back and touched the bar high on the chest, this is called the Schwarzenegger twist

Incline Barbell Presses: SET 5 // REPS 10-15

For incline barbell, press Arnold would do much like he did in the bench press: kept his elbows well back and touched the bar very high on his chest. Arnold would do 10-152 reps for 5 sets. Concentrating more on form rather than how much the weight he lifted. He claimed most of his upper chest mass was from his movement

Dumbbell Flyes: SET 5 // REPS 10-15

In the opening scenes of “Pumping Iron” you can see Arnold performing this exercise. Arnold prefers dumbbells that would allow him 5 sets of 10-15 reps. He always assumed that he is hugging a large tree and the dumbbells never touched each other. Preferably they’d remain 8-10 cm’s apart at the end of each rep

Weighted Dips: SET 5 // REPS 15

Dips are the exercise many people don’t seem to use for chest, most use it as a triceps move. But Arnold always felt that Dips actually flush the whole pectoral area and are perfect for building the lower pecs to give you that impressive, deep muscular ridge that separates the pecs from the abs

To build excellent size, you should go with weighted dips (Arnold used to hang an 80-pound dumbbell from his weight belt and do sets of 15 reps). Make sure you go all the way down until you feel a good stretch in your chest for each rep, leaning your torso forward and keeping your knees back, and don’t feel as though you have to lock out your elbows at the top