I thought I’d do something I haven’t done in a while and just post some highlights I’m proud of for August.
Training has been GREAT this month. I look forward to August every month, due to August of Arms. I feel like it’s a chance for me to get away from the stresses of Grip and some of the frustrations of strength training, and just train for me. Almost like a vacation, even though I train just about every day.
I did take off 2 days in August. Both were Sundays. On one of them, I was a bit hung over from too much indulgence the day before and I knew the training was going to suck. The other day, I was extremely busy preparing content for Legtember, which is all ready now and you can pick it up through that link. After shooting 20+ leg videos, editing them, and uploading them for the Legtember exercise index, I was wiped and just couldn’t pull together enough energy for a respectable workout.
Here are some of the lifts I’ve been most happy with this month.
Max Alternated Dumbbell Curl
One of my ultimate goals is to curl 100lb dumbbells. I made a big PR this year, by finally curling my dumbbells that are marked “85s,’ but actually scale out at 91lbs apiece. I’ve tried at least a half dozen times to curl these sons of guns, and never been able to get past parallel position, but they came up pretty strong earlier this month.
Blobzilla + 55lb Anvil by the Heel
I finally seem to have gotten through some index finger injuries. One that came all the way back into last August (2016) from breaking a nail in a strongman show, to the prep for Nationals in June 2017, on the Tips Tester. My fingers just do not like that piece. I haven’t been able to lift Blobzilla many times since about April due to my fingers hurting. The 55lb Anvil by the Heel – I threw that in just for some variety.
Runing Man Dumbbell Biceps Curls Challenge
My endurance has improved well over the course of the month. I really had to take a lot of breaks the first and second time I ran through this. I was “ON,” on this day though. I think I can shave it down to under 2 minutes, if I can manage to get through it with zero rest-breaks.
110 Dumbbell Bench Press x 16 Reps
Until I get heavier dumbbells, I’m shooting to build this up to a set of 20 reps. My long term goal for Dumbbell Bench Press is still 150s for a set of 10. I did a set of 3 near the end of July, while I was on vacation.
I’m extremely please with the results I’ve seen from this month’s arm training, especially in the performance department, and I hope all of you who picked up the August of Arms program are seeing the same kind of thing. I can’t wait until the month is over to get a measurement. I think I have a real good chance to hit the 20″ mark. It will also be re-test day on the 4 main movements, and I can see those going up BIG TIME.
To also have seen some resurgence in my Block Weight Strength, as well as improvement on the Dumbbell Bench Press – those are just sweet, sweet bonuses.
And of course, once September gets here, it’s time for Legtember, brother.
If you want in on that, go here => LEGTEMBER: Make Leg Day Great Again.
Thanks and all the best in your training.
Tags: arm training, arms, august of arms, big arms, bigger arms, build big arms, build bigger arms
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Last week, I tried curling 80lb Dumbbells for the first time in a little while. The cross-body tension had really been bothering my back for quite some time. But it was feeling pretty good here, recently so I gave it a run.
80lb Curl Initial Test
This test didn’t go very well. Maybe I wasn’t warmed up very well. Maybe I was kind of tired. Maybe something was just a little off, but I didn’t get very many reps.
80lb Curl Second Test
About a week later, I tried the 80’s again, and was pleasantly surprised with how many reps I got: 5 with the Left arm and 4 with the Right. No idea why my left is stronger or has better endurance, but it has been that way for a few months.
85lb Curl Initial Test
After the PR at 80, I figured I’d better try out the 85’s. I have never curled these 85’s before, and in fact have only been able to curl 85’s one other time, if memory serves.
I approach arms like this. Sure, I want them to be big, but I want them to be strong too.
That’s why I have a double-sided goal for my arm development of 20″ biceps, cold (no pump) and to one day be able to curl 100lb Dumbbells.
All the best in your training.
Tags: big arms, bigger forearms, build big forearms, build bigger forearms, forearm, forearms
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The official August of Arms period has come and gone, so I wanted to share with you my results.
First off, I’ll say that August was an absolute mess for me, as far as Arm Training goes.
A new contest, Living Legends, where big money was at stake, required a proper deload period, so I did no training for several days during the month.
I also hurt my right index finger early in the month, which made several exercises impossible without substantial pain, so I was relegated to repeating many exercises more times than I’d like.
On top of that, I couldn’t even train the Close-Grip Bench Press, one of the benchmark lifts of August of Arms.
All of this resulted in poorer overall performance than I have seen the last two years.
But hey, sometimes stuff happens and you have the make the most of what you can do and just move on.
August of Arms 2016 – Measurements
I failed to do pre-measurements of my biceps at the beginning of the month, so I do not know where I started the month (another mistake I made), although I do know that in March I measured my arms and both were right around 18.5 inches.
I ended this month at right around 19″ for both arms.
August of Arms 2016 – 135lb Barbell Curls – Max Reps
The first test was Barbell Curls with 135lbs for as many reps as possible.
I began the month with 7 reps on the 135lb Barbell Curl for Max Reps.
I was able to improve to 9 reps by month’s end. You’ll see the reps are much quicker at the end of the month, as technique improved, as well as strength.
August of Arms 2016 – 30lb French Press x 100 reps AFAP
This drill, while the lightest weight, is actually probably the hardest to get through, because the pump is pretty significant and the dynamic nature lights my triceps insertions up. I started the month off with a finish of 2:09.
By the end of the month, I saw a very decent improvement, completing all 100 reps in 1:50.
August of Arms 2016 – Poundstone Curls – Barbell x 100 reps AFAP
The next test was Poundstone Curls – curling an empty barbell for 100 reps as fast as possible without setting the barbell down.
To my surprise, without working the Poundstone Curl since last August or September, probably, I was able to get all the way to 100 reps without any breaks or pauses, motoring straight through in 2:00 flat. This was the fastest I’ve ever gotten this, according to my spotty records.
I was able to do the same thing at the end of the month, as well, shooting straight through all 100 reps in 1:38, just completely blowing away all the previous attempts I’ve ever taken.
The 4th test, which I didn’t do, was the Close Grip Bench Press. My pec insertions felt like they were on fire when I did a warm-up set of 225 at the beginning of the month, so I completely waived that off and didn’t do any Close Grip Press training during the month, although I did do some Dumbbell Crush Press throughout the month, which never hurt at all.
So, to wrap up, while I was disappointed in my arm measurement by the end of the month, it’s pretty hard to be upset with improvement across the board on the testing lifts.
There’s no doubt that August of Arms works, since all three years my performance measures went up and all three years I saw size improvements.
Want Bigger Arms? THIS is Your Program
I’ll also say that this is the best my arms have felt in a while. Last year, I did something to my left biceps and forearm doing a heavy set of Reverse EZ Bar Curls, either near the tail end of August or sometime in September, and that bothered me for a looooong time. As a result, I didn’t do much arm work during the end of 2015 and throughout 2016, because so many movements irritated those areas.
The biggest disappointment for me though, was the fact I missed so many days. Sure, some of them were for good reasons, like the off-time I took to re-energize for Living Legends, but there were still a few days where I just didn’t get the work in.
The first day I missed stung me really bad, and felt like an absolute heel. Then the deload took place, when I was trying to get my index finger healed up, and with each day of no arm training, the sting was a little less, a little less, a little less.
It reminded me of skipping leg days back in college. You do it 2 or 3 Fridays in a row, and it gets easier to do every single time.
I don’t like that feeling, and thankfully, once Living Legends was done, I was able to get back in the groove. By the end of the month, I felt like a steam engine train, ready to conquer every corner and hill in my path, and I feel I finished on a high note.
In fact, I’m feeling very motivated to keep the arm work going.
I REALLY want 20″ arms.
The plan going forward is to hit biceps twice a week, and triceps, once a week.
The plan is to hit biceps on Mondays and Saturdays. Triceps will be Thursday or Friday mornings, along with Back, depending on which day it falls on.
I’m going to continue to work on a combination of Biceps Strength, which heavier weights and lower reps, and Biceps Volume with lower weights, higher reps, often done in combinations of 2 or 3 exercises.
I think with that sort of set-up, I’ll have plenty of time to recover between each arm workout, so I’ll be able to attack Arms hard on each of those days.
I’ll also do my best to re-measure every 2 weeks and re-test on Poundstone and 135lb Barbell Curls the last week of each month. I’m gonna have to choose a different Triceps exercise or two for those tests, since the Close Grips are bothering my pec and the One Arm French Press were bothering my Triceps tendons.
Stay tuned for more intense arm training coming your way soon.
All the best.
Is WRIST PAIN Holding Back Your Arm Training?
FIX IT with This Program:
August of Arms isn’t just about doing a bunch of volume in order to get the arms to swell up and get a bigger measurement. It’s also about building strength in addition to the size.
With that in mind, August of Arms has 4 separate testing exercises built into it based around performance.
So far, I have knocked out two of these. Unfortunately, I tried to do Bodyweight Close Grip Bench Press, and I couldn’t do it without pain. Something just wasn’t feeling right. But, I did take care of 2 out of the other 3: 135lb Barbell Curls for Max Reps and 30lb One Arm French Press for 100 reps, alternating as needed.
135lb Barbell Curls for Max Reps
30lb French Press – 100 Reps AFAP, Alternating Arms as Needed
The last test lift for me, Poundstone Curls, involves curling an empty 45lb Barbell for 100 reps as fast as possible. I haven’t tried this since last year at the end of August, so it’s gonna be interesting!
So, now the baselines are established, and it’s time to work my ass off throughout the rest of the month, to see increases in SIZE, STRENGTH, and ENDURANCE.
Stay tuned for more updates.
For more information on August of Arms, click the banner below.
All the best in your training,
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