One thing that is synonymous amongst the male crowd who train, is the desire for seriously big and strong biceps & triceps.
We all love to squat and dead-lift (right guys?), but no one wants to reveal their thighs and quads quite like they do the almighty mirror-muscles.
So the burning question is: How to get big biceps and triceps and how to build that arm muscle the fastest? Surely the girls all want to see tight tees and bulging arms.
Well at least that’s what the male population tends to think.
I’m going to allow this misconception to fly, as I do believe sizeable, well-toned arms are a must have on any aspiring gym-junkie (not just the guys mind you). However, Let’s not aspire to become the synthol-man or one of his nasty counterparts. Ridiculously large and out of proportion arms are a big no, no to the land of the fairer sex.
So what are the tips for building arm muscle fast then bucko?
If you’ve stopped growing, are getting weaker (heaven forbid) or looking for inspiration in your arm workouts, here are 5 things you should know for bicep & triceps training.
#5 Avoid overtraining
This is often the first mistake many of us make when trying to add Arnie-worthy amounts of arm-meat to our bones.
The problem is, the muscles in our arms are quite small (particularly the biceps).
You don’t need to blast them with 5 different exercises and 200 reps a session. This will weaken you and send you on your merry way to becoming the world’s smallest man. With the tiniest arms. Yes, that’s right.
#4 Quit using momentum
I saw this today and it inspired me to post this very article. It usually occurs when ‘swinging the bar’. Especially during bicep workouts on alternating dumb-bell curl movements where you bring one arm up before the other has completed a full repetition.
During alternating dumbbell exercises—curl one arm up, then lower it completely before bringing up the other.
Notice how much harder that is? That’s because all of the weight is now on your biceps and not being distributed evenly through your shoulders, back and pelvis.
#3 Squeeze the bar
Nothing allows you to lift more than squeezing the bar as you complete each rep. It really works dude. Honestly. You wouldn’t arm wrestle someone without using the firmest grip possible would you? If you want to build arm muscle fast, then same goes here.
As an example—during biceps training, squeeze the bar ultra tight. This will ignite more of the targeted muscle fibre allowing you to lift more weight.
#2 Vary your rep ranges
If you’ve been stuck in the 4-6 rep range for a while, switch it up to 8-12 or vice versa.
Like most of the body’s muscles, the biceps and triceps are quick to adapt to any exercise after a period of time.
#1 Avoid training to failure all the time
This sends negative feedback to your central nervous system. You are telling it that you can’t complete the next rep and have ultimately ‘FAILED’. Your central nervous system is smart and recognises this fact.
The next time you try to lift heavier, it will remember what weight you FAILED at lifting previously.
“You couldn’t lift the previous weight, how do you think you’re gonna lift an even HEAVIER weight than before, my nizzle?”. As clearly, your central nervous system is Snoop-Dog.
#Bonus Tip – Don’t neglect the forearms
You’d be surprised at how many people neglect their forearms. A strong grip, and a decent set of Popeye forearms will increase the amount of weight you lift for not only bicep and tricep exercises, but also for any other movement involving the arms as a whole.
If you want to add more pounds to your bench press, then start training those forearms.
Further reading on bigger biceps and triceps
Editor’s note: What are other bodybuilding exercises that you use to re-ignite the fire in your biceps and triceps when they start lagging? Comment below.