Back and biceps workout.

It's truly amazing the amount of people that are only concerned with improving the asthetic appearance of their "mirror muscles". Abs, chest and arms tend to trump all other body parts when putting together a workout regime. Why work the muscles you can't see right? WRONG!

Our bodies have an incredible survival mechanism. If you spend all of your time working very specific muscles, your body will eventually stop responding regardless of how challenging and creative your workouts are. It is in fact dangerous and detrimental to your body to have muscle imbalances, it puts your posture at risk and leaves you susceptible to injury.

Working your back should be as high a priority as your chest, arms and abs. There's nothing that screams strength and power more than a well sculpted back. Throw some effort at your back workouts and you'll not only be reaping the rewards of a strong v-shaped back, you'll be preventing postural problems further down the line.


The workout

Difficulty rating 8*******
This is NOT recommended if you have been training for less than 1 year.

To be performed once per week.

Choosing the correct weight

The One Rep Max (1 RM) is the highest possible weight you could lift on a particular exercise if you only did one repetition. When strength training, you should be lifting a weight that is about 60-80% of this 1 RM. Here’s an easier way to figure it out: Find a weight that you can lift (with proper form) at least 8 times, but no more than 15. As you get stronger, and reach 15 reps, it’s time to increase your weight again. Choose a weight that is challenging enough that you are not able to complete the last couple of reps for the last set/s.

Tempo (3-1-2)

The first number is for the negative or eccentric phase - in other words, when you are lowering the weight or when you are moving in a direction opposite to the muscle contraction. For a squat and a bench press, this would mean lowering the weight. For a cable row, this would mean returning the plates to the stack.

The second number is the pause after the first phase is complete - for example, in the bench press, a pause as the weight is held stationary just above the chest.

The third number refers to the concentric or positive phase - the contraction. For a bench press, this would be driving the bar upwards. A number of 1 here typically means, "explode" - in other words, you may do it faster than 1 second.

The back and biceps workout

Warm up
8 minute warm up on the cross-trainer (Level 4)
2x10 sets of TRX horizontal pull ups 2-0-2
30 second rest period between sets

Pull-ups (Wide grip) 2-0-1
6 sets to failure (Example 10, 10, 9, 7, 5, 4)
2 minute rest period between sets

Seated row (Wide grip) 2-0-1
5 sets of 8-12 reps
60 second rest period between sets

Horizontal rows (medium grip) 1-0-1
4 sets of 8 - 12 reps
60 second rest period between sets

Seated row machine (Narrow grip) 1-0-1
5 sets of 8-12 reps
60 second rest period between sets.

Single arm Bicep curl (Cable pulley) 1-0-1
Drop sets - 3 x 10-10-10

Cool down
10-20 minute stretch

Related articles: drop sets and chest and tricep workout

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