Skin-Splitting Training for Massive Arms

Now, how do I dig myself out of the hole I created with this title? Maybe if I just said that I now have an arm day in my program…
STOP!
That won’t work.
How about if I talk about the massive pumps I keep getting?
STOP!
Ok then, I should just remind everyone it’s not what you lift that matters, but what you look like! It’s not about how strong you are but how strong you look like you are!
OMG!
What the hell is going on around here? The question still remains…
How do I dig myself out of this hole that I just made DEEPER?
Okay, time to get serious. The bigger your arms, the more rebound you’ll get from the bottom of your bench, the tighter you’ll be able to keep your back when you squat and the better grip you’ll have when you pull.
Well, not really, but I tried.

How about this…

You know what? None of this really matters. I’ve never met and only read of a few people who didn’t want bigger arms. This is if they are a strength athlete, bodybuilder, powerlifter, football player or any other athlete. You might be one of those who really doesn’t care, but was that always the case, or did you stop caring when you couldn’t get your arms to grow?

WTF!

My bipolar – alter personality Zippy just hit me over the head with his 8-year-old Timberland work boot, so I have to stop now.

The fact is that if you want bigger arms, just get bigger and lift bigger stuff. This is true for most people, but there are still many who need specialized arm training to get them to grow, as well as, others who just enjoy to hammer their arms in the gym.

Here’s a sample of one of John Meadows Mountain Dog Arm Training Sessions.

  • John’s actual program is in regular text.
  • My notes and adjustments are in italics.

This session is a moderate day from program 5.

Seated Dumbell Curls – Do a few warm-up sets. Then, let’s do 3 sets of 10 with a three second descent. Three total working sets.

I personally get more out of these when I keep my palms up the entire time, flex the biceps at the top and flex the triceps at the bottom to get a little extra stretch. You really don’t need to use a lot of weight with these. Three working sets after 2 or 3 warm-up sets will get the blood going and before you’re done, you should already be pretty tight.


Barbell Curl– Do 6 sets of 6 with a 45 second break in between sets. Use a three-second descent on these, too. Your arms should be on fire. SIx total working sets.

These didn’t go so well. I decided to use the fattest bar we have and did three warm-up sets and then began working up. After getting four reps with two dimes per side, I knew I was going to have some issues. I lowered the weight to a nickel per side and did 6 sets of 6 with 45 seconds rest and by the time I was done ,my arms were trashed. I barely got though the sets, as you can see from, my form on this last set.

EZ Bar Preacher Curls – Find a weight that you can do for 15 reps. Do 15, then rest 45 seconds and go again. Rest 45 seconds, go again, and then do it one final time for four sets. Obviously, you won’t be getting 15 reps near the end!  4 total working sets.

I always use the machine on these because I’m too lazy to set up all the other stuff to do this movement. All I have to do here is toss some weight on the machine and sit down. The biggest issue here is that my biceps were already shot (so I wasn’t even able to reach up and adjust my hat). I did what I could to finish the bicep part of this session.

Rope Pushdowns– Do a few sets to get warmed-up. This is the same thing as last week. Let’s go with 4 sets of 15 reps. Flex as many as you can hard, then just pump them to get to 15. Four total working sets.

I love using the fat rope for these and did 4-5 warm-up sets before I got rolling on these. I try to keep these as strict as I can, but my form does loosen up as the weight gets heavier.  I make sure the last two sets are one rep shy of failure. If the weight feels too easy, I’ll slow the rep speed down.

Seated Dip Machine– Let your arms ride up pretty high, but don’t lock out on these this time. Work the top part more! Do 4 sets of 8 reps with a three second descent! Four total working sets

I only needed two warm-up sets, and they were used to determine how much weight to use for the 4 sets of 8. I tried to keep the weight the same for all four sets.

Decline Skull Crushers/Extensions– Try and let the bar come back behind your head for a really good stretch. 4 sets of 10 again. 4 total working sets

I used the 3” training grenade for this one. It took a few sets to get the setup and weight right. Once I found a weight that worked for 10, I performed 4 sets with the same weight and on the last one, did a strip set as seen in the second video. This was an awesome finisher for my triceps. My arms were DONE after this.


As I still can’t totally wrap my head around having an “arm day” I also train calves on this day.

Calf Raises– 8 sets of 10 reps, flexing hard and stretching between sets.

Seated Calf Raise– 4 sets of 10 reps, flexing hard and stretching between sets.

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About the Author

Dave Tate is the founder and CEO of elitefts.com, staffed by experienced professionals dedicated to providing strength coaches, athletes and trainers with the highest-quality equipment, personalized service and extensive knowledge needed to advance their training programs. View Dave Tate's Training Log HERE