Tag Archives: bodybuilding

Arnold Schwarzenegger Bodybuilding Routine

Mon. & Thu.

  • Bench Press
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Incline Press
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Pullover
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Chin-Ups
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Bent Over Rows
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Deadlifts
    • /10 /6 /4
  • Crunches
    • 5×25

Tue. & Fri.

  • Barbell Clean and Press
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Heavy Upright Rows
    • /10 6 4
  • Push Presses
    • /6 /4 /2
  • Standing Barbell  Curls
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Seated Dumbbell Curls
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Close-Grip Press
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Standing Triceps Extensions with Barbell
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Wrist Curls
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Reverse Wrist Curls
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Reverse Crunches
    • 5×25

Wed. & Sat.

  • Squats
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Lunges
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Leg Curls
    • /15 /10 /8 /6
  • Standing Calf Raises
    • 5×15
  • Straight-leg Deadlifts
    • /10 /6 /4
  • Good Mornings
    • /10 /6 /4

Deadlift Training – Frequency and Intensity

arnold-schwarzenegger-deadlift-training

Deadlifts can be your best friend or your worst nightmare. They are a gut wrenching exercise and the ultimate test of strength.

The deadlift is popular because it is one of the most effective exercises – perhaps even better than the squat – and, of course, is one of the big three in Powerlifting.

However, deadlifts can leave you feeling like you are dead if done too frequently or intensely. The deadlift places much greater stress on the central nervous system compared to other back exercises such as the barbell row and power clean.

I didn’t really consider this phenomenon until I started recording some of my workouts to assess my technique. I noticed that the average deadlift can take more than several seconds to perform, while other movements take only perhaps a second to perform and most had a shorter range of motion. The Olympic lifts, the exception, are both a longer range of motion and also performed exceedingly fast.

There is definitely a power output difference that can be calculated for each exercise but it is already evident that deadlifts performed too intensely and frequently will fry out the nervous system compared to other exercises.

The only exception to this rule would be new lifters who still haven’t fully adapted neurologically to the movement. Beginners are potentially the only group that can get away from deadlifting as frequent as 2 or 3 times a week. Even squatting everyday wouldn’t fry your nervous system as bad as deadlifting 3 times a week.

The only other exception would be a specialty program designed to increase the deadlift which would require doing less volume for virtually every other body part.

Now using this theory we can assume high frequency training using short range and fast movements would be as effective as a conjugate to increase deadlift strength. The only variable that would have to be further isolated would be the power output of the said exercise.

Some obvious exercises would be shrugs, barbell cheat rows, power cleans, dumbbell rows, seated cable rows, and lat pull downs.

Some evidence supporting this would be the fact that many bodybuilders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger could deadlift over 710 lbs raw and Ronnie Coleman could do doubles with over 800 lbs using a squat suit. These well-known bodybuilders didn’t specialize in deadlift training and in fact were more concerned with the lats.

In bodybuilding if you don’t have lats then just shut up about your lower back and deadlift. Wide lats are the big show piece muscle when it comes to back in bodybuilding. So these bodybuilders for sure didn’t become Mr. Olympia by specializing in the deadlift or they for sure would have some of the greatest deadlift records in the sport of Powerlifting.

So if you are having nightmares about your next back workout consider what your goal is. If you want a big back and are more interested in bodybuilding then you should train like a bodybuilder and use the deadlift an assessment tool rather than an exercise.

On the other hand, if you are more worried about your max deadlift then there is no way around the principle of specificity. You have to deadlift and learn to love it. There is no way around it.

Why Keep Training?

paul-anderson-squatting

I entered a powerlifting tournament not too long ago and came in last place in my weight class. One of the lifters had his pro card and another pulled a 600 lbs deadlift in my weight class.

This is absolutely retarded. They lift almost as much as Arnold Schwarzenegger back in his prime and he admitted to steroid use because it was legal then. Arnold was 250 lbs in competition and this young Powerlifter was only 180 lbs.

I am of course a natty for life and didn’t feel that I really fit in. I lift completely raw and won’t use a belt or knee wraps either.

Belts and knee wraps add weight to your lift. You often see on YouTube and in fitness magazines powerliters squatting monolithic weights of over 1,000 lbs. Take away their belts, wraps, and suits and this equipped squat translates into a raw 750 lbs Paul Anderson style of squat.

Why keep training?

In time a natty will surpass a bunch of pathetic weaklings who need to take steroids and need equipment to lift.

If you believe you are destined for greatness then choose the path less travelled. Take a look at my workout routine. It has made me the strongest natty I know and it can do the same for you.

Front Squats for Lower Quads

arnold-front-squat

If you are a bodybuilder and haven’t made the front squat the centre of your leg routine then it is time to start. Mastering this exercise will develop the lower quads to a far greater extent than any other leg exercise.

The front squat is the primary squat used by Olympic Weightlifters to build strength in the lower body and closely correlates to the amount of weight an Olympic lifter can clean. For Olympic lifters increasing the size and muscularity of the quads is not a focus but is the by-product doing countless of front squats.

If you compare the quads of an Olympic Weightlifter to a Powerlifter that specializes in the low bar back squat it becomes evident how changing the positioning of the bar from the back to the front develops the quads more completely. In fact, the reason a Powerlifting squat is more powerful than a front squat is that the posterior chain can be activated to help lift the weight.

In my opinion this is exactly what you don’t want to do as a bodybuilder. You want to keep the stress on the lower quads as much as possible in order to fully develop this area. It is the contrast between a small knee joint and a huge lower quad that wins at a bodybuilding competition.

Increasing your strength in the front squat will also increase the amount you can clean. Although it isn’t that often a bodybuilder is asked how much they can clean CrossFit is making this exercise more popular as a measure of athletic power. If you add 50 lbs to your front squat guaranteed your clean will have increased close to that much as well.

The front squat is an exercise that requires practice. You can’t expect to master this exercise overnight. In fact it may take a month or two before you finally learn how to properly rack the bar on top of the shoulders and clavicles without pinching the skin or causing discomfort. However, as you continue to practice this exercise you will notice a change in the shape and look of your quads.

There is no substitute for the front squat. It is a Weightlifter’s best friend and should be the mainstay of any bodybuilding quads routine. You can do leg extensions, leg presses, and back squats until your knees blow out but nothing will blow up your lower quads like front squat.