My goal is to build huge muscular arms, so I have been training my biceps 3 times per week and doing 4 different exercises each workout. Too much training volume and not enough recovery can diminish growth, just like not enough training stress can as well. My other favorite way to do arms is a 45 minute Interval & Arms ride. Pre-Workout Nutrition: What to Eat Before a Workout. But I think what you're really asking is: "How do I get bigger arms?". This usually consists of a 30 minute ride + a 10 minute arms workout (on the bike). ARMS: I do two arm focused days a week. Arrange your workout split accordingly. For maximum muscle growth, athletic performance or fat loss, you need to work out more frequently. Copyright ©2020 Fitbod, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Vary the intensity of your workouts. Avoid Overtraining New lifters often make the mistake of trying to increase the strength of a muscle by training it every day. Learn more about triceps anatomy and exercise selection, Learn more about biceps anatomy and exercise selection, Learn more about forearm anatomy and exercise selection, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16095407, remember that doing more reps and sets is not always the answer to arm growth. What makes an effective arm workout? Some people can get away with 5 (although few truly need it), and some people can get by with 2. Perform different methods of cardio in a week, like running on the treadmill, biking, and swimming. But allowing your arm muscles time to rest is just as effective to building muscle mass as exercise. As Kincade said in Skyfall, sometimes the old ways are the best. Similar to the triceps, the key with biceps training for maximizing muscle growth is maximizing the range of motion and tension placed on the muscle. Do too much, and you risk overtraining and losing your hard-earned muscle. If you’re just getting started, or at the beginning of your road to arms gains, your bi-weekly arm workout should include 4-6 sets. But remember, you’ll build up to this. Fifth, your forearms are part of your arms and you should train them as well. If you train arms twice per week, you'll do 2-3 exercises per session with 3-4 total sets. These are moves that work multiple muscles at a time. Daniel Bubnis, M.S., NASM-CPT, NASE Level II-CSS. This article explains why the answer isn’t black and white. The bicep is made up of the long head and short head. This is the just like the question of how often you should train each body part. You can train arms between 2-6 times per week. Training too little will result in little growth, justlike training too often (as your arms cannot rebuild and recover). Each head of the muscle is targeted by various movements, making it vital to understand how various exercise and angles can place more emphasis on the development of a particle ahead of the triceps muscle. When you lift weights, you increase your lean muscle mass. By. Our website services, content, and products are for informational purposes only. Question: I’m a little confused about the frequency of my weight training workouts. To reach your goal of slender, toned arms, you might be tempted to exercise your arm muscles every day. Aim to do the upper body workout three to four times a week, and use the alternate days to do 30-60 minutes of aerobic exercise (see the ‘Strong arm tactics’ later in this article) for some ideas. The triceps is made up of three muscluar heads; (lateral head, long head, and medial head). Arm hypertrophy is dependent on various factors, however loading, while one of them, is not always indicative of an effective stimulus for arm growth. Get Leaner. The forearms are the body part that is always exposed to the view of everybody. They key with determining your arm training frequency depends on a variety of factors, all of which are discussed below. Include free-weight exercises in each tri workout. You can train arms between 2-6 times per week. Another exception is that of the extremely advanced bodybuilder who have so much muscle mass and strength that once a week training works best. Here are some ways to do so: When it comes to adding muscle to your frame, you need to make sure you’re giving your body plenty of time to rest between strength training sessions. At the end of the series of exercises, you typically rest for a set period (30 to 60 seconds) and repeat the circuit two or three more times. The Bottom Line. Finding the right balance of the two will depend on your individual goals, how quickly you want to achieve them, and the amount of time you can commit to exercising. How often should you work out for muscle gain? Effective arm workouts included maximizing the muscular pump of the biceps and triceps, some residual soreness afterwards (DOMs), and overall growth. Similar to optimal triceps training, a sound biceps training program should include movements that target both the long and short heads of the biceps. How much weight you lose depends on the amount of exercise you’re willing to commit to and how closely you stick to your diet. Answer: Most people should train their arms twice a week (with 2 to 3 days of rest in between), except if they are hardgainers, in which case once a week is best. When performing movements, opt to perform them in slow and controlled motions, focusing on feeling the muscle stretch and contract under loads throughout the full range of motion. If you need to take a full week off from training, or a month off of direct arm training, go ahead and do so before ramping up your arm training volume and frequency. You'll burn more calories and boost your…. It’s when the exercise feels impossible to finish. Cardiovascular exercise isn’t just essential in maintaining good heart health. Related Article: How Many Exercises Make An Effective Arm Workout? Sexy, sculpted arms make you feel and look great when you show them off in a sleeveless dress. By focusing on the arms for this six-week period, Sandler says you should cut back on other body part training in terms of volume (number of exercise, sets and reps) because your biceps work as a secondary muscle group when you train back, and your triceps are involved in heavy chest and shoulder movements. Doing the same amount of exercise day after day can inhibit recovery and cause you to lose muscle over time. Below are five important factors to consider when looking to optimize your arm training routine. We'd all like to believe that 5-minute workouts will give us the results we're looking for (hello, tight-and-toned abs) … but will they? My recommendation is: the majority of the population should weight train 3-4 times per week, and never more than 2 consecutive days in a row. Answer: Most people should train their arms twice a week (with 2 to 3 days of rest in between), except if they are hardgainers, in which case once a week is best. Determining the frequency of arm workouts (how many arm workouts per week) really comes down to the amount of work sets you are performing pre workout and what the total work sets per week comes out to be. If you are correctly prescribing training volume and are not seeing growth, keep reading. It is suggested that a mixture of the moderate (8-15) and higher rep (20-30) are used throughout a training program. Benefits extend from…, Walking is great for your health, but how much do you need to walk to aid weight loss? Are 5-Minute Daily Workout Routines Really Beneficial? Healthline Media does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. As you develop and learn the capabilities of your body, including how you recover after each set, you could advance the number of sets to 10-12 twice a week. This could not be further from the truth when it comes to muscle growth and recovery. While there is no set definition of an effective workout, it's important to remember that doing more reps and sets is not always the answer to arm growth, nor is lifting heavy. Performing as little as 6-8 sets per week can also suffice for some lifters who are performing a lot of pulling, as the biceps are also responsible for this movement. Lack of performing movements in the full range of motion can often minimize your abilities to maximize growth. That's why you'll be training arms three times per week in weeks three through five and … A whopping 69% of them trained using bro-splits aka '1 muscle group a day' and trained every muscle group just once a week. How many times should I work out each muscle group per week? One cause of this is the lack of full range of motion training. Does Walking 1 Hour Every Day Aid Weight Loss? Somewhere along the way people told themselves, “MORE IS BETTER”. Often, individuals will sacrifice a deep muscular strength and high amounts of tension on the muscle for fast-paced, partial range of motion reps. I really hope that this article titled: “How Often Should I Lift Weights” was helpful for you. Do a gentle yoga class or spend extra time stretching. Here’s Tips on How and When to Exercise That Can Help, Benefits of Strenuous Exercise and How to Add It to Your Workout, 2 to 3 days per week of strength training (full-body each session), 3 to 4 days per week of strength training (split up workout by body part or upper/lower body), 4 to 5 days per week of strength training (an advanced exerciser might structure their week with three days on, one day off), 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio activity at least five days per week (150 minutes per week), at least 25 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity three days per week (75 minutes per week). I do 4 sets of 8-10 reps for each exercise for my biceps (16 total sets per workout). I currently train jiu jitsu and/or workout about six days a week and take one day a week off. With a calorie-restricted, high-protein diet and the right mix of cardio and strength training, you can tone flabby arms in as little as four weeks. In literal terms, getting leaner isn't really a tip for making your arms bigger. If you train arms twice per week, you'll do 2-3 exercises per session with 3-4 total sets. Plan your workouts to include a combination of: For maximum results, a workout program should consist of cardiovascular and strength training exercise. It is key that the muscular fatigue occurs within the biceps. And remember, using less weight to allow for a fuller range of motion is key, not lifting heavy! The most important thing with any exercise routine is CONSISTENCY. weights I use, but you don’t know how hard these workouts are until you try them. Arm training is any training that is dedicated to increasing the strength, size, and performance of the arm muscles. He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), USA Weightlifting Advanced Coach, and has over 10+ years of experience working with collegiate athletes, national level lifters, and beginners alike. The biceps, like the triceps, have multiple muscular heads that are targeted by various exercises and movements. You can reduce your muscle mass by doing the opposite of what you would do to increase muscle mass: Consume fewer calories, use lighter weights and…. Remember, it takes time to see super-sized guns , and the bi’s are only one half of the equation (your triceps make up the other half). This may be due to using too much weight, or simply not understanding movmnt technique. Include both HIIT and moderate-intensity exercises. Related Article: Muscle Memory For Bodybuilding: What Is It? If the idea of taking a day or two off each week is hard for you to manage, consider treating these days as active rest. I keep my workouts during the week to 45 minutes or less & go a little longer on the weekend. Stick to two to three days of cardio per week. Is it soreness? Learn more about biceps anatomy and exercise selection! ARMS: I do two arm focused days a week. How many times should I work out each muscle group per week? The Fitbod app recommends precise training loads, sets, and reps based on logged workout history. To get started on the right track with a very helpful and balanced workout program, please accept my free fitness report below as a gift. Often, individuals will sacrifice a deep muscular strength and high amounts of tension on the muscle for fast-paced, partial range of motion reps. Along with consistency, determination and repetitions, gaining bicep muscle mass requires time. In order to get back to a muscle-building phase, you need to change things up. © 2005-2020 Healthline Media a Red Ventures Company. How Often Do You Work Your Arms? That said, many people seek programs that are designed for faster weight loss. If you train arms 6 days per week, you'll do one exercise per muscle group per day, with only 2 sets per workout. But the truth is, when it comes to working out, you should allow 2 or 3 days for muscle recovery. I have spent years trying to make my arms grow without getting any results because I was doing the wrong things. Losing Sleep During COVID-19? Usually breaks down to Monday is the day when I work out with a trainer. In general, I find that biceps and triceps each grow well with, and can recuperate from, approximately 9-12 working sets per week. I do 4 sets of 8-10 reps for each exercise for my biceps (16 total sets per workout). Nonetheless, a full range of motion is key, with complete extension of the elbow and an intense isometric contraction at the top of the movement is highly effective at increase triceps growth. Be sure that you are maximizing your recovery and staying within optimal weekly training volume (work sets per week). Bodybuilders and many serious amateur athletes work out five or six days a week, often setting up complex workout schedules to optimize their muscle development. Here’s what the science says: At first, it was viewed to do 10 sets at a minimum at RPE 8.5–9.5. So, how often should you train your arms if you are looking for optimal muscle growth? The research says that at the very least, training a minimum of two days per week is needed to maximize muscle growth. This is especially so if the amount of time you’re putting in doesn’t match up with your goals. My goal is to build huge muscular arms, so I have been training my biceps 3 times per week and doing 4 different exercises each workout. Looking to take you training to the next level? How often should you work out for weight loss? Dieting has proven to be an effective method of losing weight, but in order to maintain weight loss, you need to exercise. How much arm toning and how often to do it? You need to be hitting the weights at least three days per week. The ideal amount? I'm not sure how long you've been doing your current workout routine but i would recommend switching your split- with bi/back chest/tri your killing the opposite secondary muscle for your other workouts, making one of the other workouts not as dynamic. The arm consists of numerous muscle groups, however the three main muscle groups that most people refer to are the triceps, biceps, and forearms. Tuesday I train 90 minutes of jiu jitsu. If you are not feeling the local fatigue within the muscle, you are most likely going too fast, too heavy, or not using a full range of motion. I’ve seen a lot of people recommend working each body part as often as 3 times per week, 2 times per week, and just once per week. During an intense workout, the “pain cave” is the point of physical and mental fatigue. Analysing 10 studies comparing muscle gain in people training muscles once, twice or three times weekly, the scientists discovered that muscles worked twice a week … Your arms should be officially ‘fried’. Change the number of sets and reps you’re performing. Lots of bodybuilders combine biceps and back on the same day. Learn more about forearm anatomy and exercise selection! Sexy, sculpted arms make you feel and look great when you show them off in a sleeveless dress. Bart is right, as long as you give a muscle 48 hours to rest, technically you could work it out a few times a week and be okay. The key to arm growth is to strike a balance between overall training stress and recovery. Consider this schedule, depending on your training level: If four days of strength training feels right, consider splitting your week up into upper (arms, chest, and abs) and lower (legs) body segments. strength training. Last medically reviewed on July 19, 2018. Learn more about triceps anatomy and exercise selection! Abdominal Bracing Exercises to Take the Strain Off Your Back. Should I workout on my arms once a week to allow more recovery or what? Overall training volume is key, with most recommendations suggesting 12-16 total work sets per week for intermediate lifters. We applied the same principle to wringing the water out of a wet towel to make your arms develop likewise. Thursday is another day where I train jiu jitsu for 90 minutes. Try these upper body beginner workouts and start building serious upper body muscle! How often can I train my arms? Single Arm Dumbbell Tricep Extension: 3 sets of 11 reps, Biceps Curl To Shoulder Press: 3 sets of 7 reps, Palms-Down Barbell Wrist Curl: 2 sets of 5 reps, Close-Grip Bench Press: 2 sets of 12 reps. Building bigger, stronger arms is not as simple as doing more sets of using heavier weights. You need to try different amounts. Recommendations suggesting 12-20 total work sets per week for intermediate lifters. Understand the factors behind muscle growth and how they relate to an individualized approach to arm training is key for all lifters, at any level. I will also give you exact volume recommendations. Friday I will work out on my own. Training the arms for optimal muscle growth is not a matter of how many days you train them, but rather, how much volume (too much, too little, just right) you are training over time (in this case, a week). I have spent years trying to make my arms grow without getting any results because I was doing the wrong things. Nick always makes fun of me for the 2 lb. Do exercises in each triceps workout that emphasize the long, lateral and medial heads. In short, the forearms can be train using flexion and extension, gripping movements, and simply holding loads and are often stressed doing other movements (rows, curls, pull ups, deadlifts, etc). Setting some time for your muscles to rest is a significant part of exercising since it allows your muscles to grow more naturally. The Fitbod algorithm also recognizes how hard a muscle group has trained and will program the right exercises based on your optimal levels of recovery. Learn about the best pre-workout nutrition strategies. Mike is Founder of J2FIT Strength and Conditioning, a growing global training company with gyms in New York City, Cincinnati, and online offering personal training, online custom coaching programs. Sometimes if I'm doing the Smolov program (which I try to do 2x per year) and a squatting day falls on arms day, I'll knock out the squats, then proceed to destroy the arms. That is why calculating your total volume and then spreading it within the week is better. Experts say cardio, strength training, and yoga done during the day can help you sleep better, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is how…, Abdominal bracing is a technique that can help you protect injury-prone areas like the neck and lower back from straining. Arms training frequency. This usually consists of a 30 minute ride + a 10 minute arms workout (on the bike). But is it real? That said, specific training exercise can be done to further improve grip strength and overall forearm development. Do this routine twice a week for 6 weeks and then buy some new shirts :-) And remember to take it easy on your other body parts (see tip # 7)! Occasionally hitting the gym will not get you those tight arms! To reach your goal of slender, toned arms, you might be tempted to exercise your arm muscles every day. If your answer is “too many to count,” you’re not alone. Cardio exercise can: If you want to lose weight, consider two days of moderate activity and two days of vigorous aerobic activity or high-intensity-interval-training (HIIT). At least two to three arm workouts per week. After 4-6 weeks of this twice-a-week biceps regimen you should see a marked improvement. Circuit training involves doing a series of exercises, one after the other, with no rest between each exercise. To give a one-size-fits-all answer, you should train your arms twice a week, but factor in a rest of two or three days in between. For example, if you do a back workout on Tuesday, and arms on Friday, you have hit your biceps twice that week as working back uses an enormous amount of biceps. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16095407. The arm muscles are primarily made up of the biceps, triceps, and forearms (grip). In Mike's spare time, he enjoys the outdoors, traveling the world, coaching, whiskey and craft beer, and spending time with his family and friends. Be sure to review the above sections and links to learn more about how various exercises target various aspects of the muscle. Performing the same movements and same angles can result in overuse injury and limited growth. Another exception is that of the extremely advanced bodybuilder who have so much muscle mass and strength that once a week training works best. Anabolic window refers to the short time after training when your muscles are repairing and recovering. Recovery is another important aspect and in order to maximize muscle growth at least 48 hours should be allowed between working out the same body part. If you want to work out five days per week and are working on both strength and cardiovascular fitness, try three days of strength training, two days of cardio, and two days of active rest. Use the above information to arm yourself with the best knowledge to attack arm training effectively to optimize growth! So, whether your goal is to sweat it out on the treadmill more often to lose a few pounds or to increase the amount of weight you’re lifting in order to gain muscle, the following tips can help you hit your target sooner and with greater success. Eating the right foods before a workout can maximize performance and speed up recovery. Odds are if you are reading this you are not happy with your arm growth, so start by determining your overall training volume per week (work sets per week) nd adjust your plan as needed. Swap out your current exercises for a fresh set. In an effort to build bigger biceps, carve out powerful pecs, build tree trunks for legs and get a set of six pack abs that might make you the envy of every guy this Summer and the desire of every woman…the natural instinct is to INCREASE the number of times you workout every week. Look in any gym and you will see people performing curls and triceps pushdowns. Whereas, 31% trained their muscle groups two to … On second … Mike has published over 500+ articles on premiere online media outlets like BarBend, BreakingMuscle, Men's Health, and FitBob, covering his expertise of strength and conditioning, Olympic weightlifting, strength development, fitness, and sports nutrition. Doing more strenuous or vigorous types of exercise can boost your overall health and fitness in many ways. This allows you to increase your metabolism and burn calories at a higher rate, even when you’re not working out. Is it a ton of workout volume? For example: If you’re not gaining muscle as quickly as you like, you might be facing the dreaded plateau. Or is it as simple as, do you feel your arms working, and are they growing in size? Performing movements with erratic speeds, lack of control, and minimal abilities to feel the biceps and triceps contracting and extending under load can all limit overall muscle stress. If you train arms 6 days per week, you'll do one exercise per muscle group per day, with only 2 … Many people wonder if it's ok to work out while they're sick. Research has shown that muscles keep repairing themselves for up to 7 days after a workout. Despite the widespread popularity of arm training, many gym goers still fall short of filling out their shirt sleeves or having lean, sculpted arms. Most people will say “just train them at the end of your back workout or shoulder workout, train them a couple of times a week”. Wednesday I will usually take off. If you are not feeling the local fatigue within the muscle, you are most likely going too fast, too heavy, or not using a full range of motion. Aim for two to three days per week of strength training. I’ve seen a lot of people recommend working each body part as often as 3 times per week, 2 times per week, and just once per week. The famous push pull system is used by lots of people today, including many in my local gym. What’s more is that it helps you reduce the risk of muscle strain. Cardiovascular exercise and strength training both play a significant role in targeting weight loss and increasing muscle size. Question: I’m a little confused about the frequency of my weight training workouts. The forearm is made up of 20 muscles, which can be categorized by flexors, extensors compartments, with sub-divisions of superficial and deep compartments. The key focus, however, should be on maximizing range of motion when training the triceps. On the other hand, if you don’t up the intensity and put the time in, your muscle gains will be minimal. The biceps and triceps, like other muscle and will need to have a foundation before jumping to higher frequencies. Well…that instinct is WRONG! This can often be done splitting up overall training volume into 3-4 sets each, 2-3 times per week. How many times have you joined a gym or committed to an exercise plan to lose weight, only to back out after a few weeks because you have no idea how often you should work out? Realizing this is important for the timing aspect of things. This article tells you whether you can lose weight by walking 1…. The general recommendation is to lose no more than 1 to 2 pounds per week. Below are a few factors to consider when training arms and determining if your workouts are setting you up for optimal biceps, triceps, and forearms hypertrophy. As discussed above, understanding triceps, biceps, and forearms anatomy is key for exercise selection. Generally, do compound lifts first, two-hand free-weight lifts next and finish with one-arm or cable exercises. The more frequently you train arms, the less you should do per day. Here are some basics of strength training to keep in mind, plus an example workout. Mike holds a Master's in Exercise Physiology and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. If your trying to increase the size of your arms your definitely gonna wanna hit them up more than once a week. Where most people fail with transitioning from once-per-week to 2-times-per-week and beyond is they assume that their work volume for one workout… should now be the volume for every workout. What is a “Pain Cave” and How Do You Power Through It in a Workout or Race? Use circuit training when lifting weights to keep your calorie burn high. Research has shown that muscles keep repairing themselves for up to 7 days after a workout. Generally speaking, each head of the deltoid can be 8-12 total sets per week. Performing movements like curls and triceps pushdown (as well as all other exercise) to the fullest range of motion creates a deep muscular stretch on the muscle that stimulates high amounts of stress. However, my arms don’t seem to be growing like they should. Lessons Learned. Knowing how often you should strength train and do cardiovascular exercise to lose weight depends on how quickly you want to see results. All rights reserved. But allowing your arm muscles time to rest is just as effective to building muscle mass as exercise. In the simplest of terms, you’ll need to burn more calories than you take in to lose weight. Arms training frequency. Take at least two days of rest each week. In this article I will tell you how often you should train your arms so that they grow faster. If you can, go for another couple weeks, as each additional workout will only add to your arm circumference. Loading used for training the triceps can be done in the light (20-30) , moderate (10-20), and heavy rep ranges (5-10), however it is suggested that a mixture of the three are used throughout a training program, starting with heavier lifts first if multiple rep ranges are used in one day. Knowing how many days you should exercise can be confusing. Performing as little as 6-8 sets per week can also suffice for some lifters who are performing a lot of pressing, as the triceps are also responsible for this movement. My other favorite way to do arms is a 45 minute Interval & Arms ride. However, my arms don’t seem to be growing like they should. In this article I will tell you how often you should train your arms so that they grow faster. The more frequently you train arms, the less you should do per day. To start, you might only want to do two or three days per week and slowly work your way up to five days. Include full-body workouts that focus on compound exercises. Loading used for training the biceps can vary, with the exception of heavy weights (less than 8 reps) as this can increase injury. Ensure you take one day off completely a week. The key is to stop the overreaching just before it turns into overtraining. If you are a highly advanced bodybuilder with extensive muscle mass, make it … How you structure your workouts and the amount of days you devote to strength training depends on your current fitness level. Known as a "pull" day, which involves all pulling motions. Focus on shorter, higher-intensity sessions, such as 25 minutes of HIIT. Try to cut back on the number of workouts or sets you do per muscle group a week. If you really want to see results reflected on the scale and continue to make progress over time, you need to commit to working out at least four to five days per week. By focusing on the arms for this six-week period, Sandler says you should cut back on other body part training in terms of volume (number of exercise, sets and reps) because your biceps work as a secondary muscle group when you train back, and your triceps are involved in heavy chest and shoulder movements.