Back and Bicep workout introduction
The Back and Bicep workout. This is another entry to our beginner workout series that is based off the pillar; Beginner Workout guide article.
I have spoken on the importance of building a V shaped physique many times. The back is going to take 70% of this responsibility. So a good back workout is absolutely vital to your physiques progression.
As for the biceps, they are half responsible for the overall look of your arms, as well as your Triceps.
Well shaped and sized Biceps can really add that finishing touch to an aesthetic look. As well as make you stand out in t-shirts, which basically announces to the general public you are an avid gym attendee!
I have chosen to combine the two muscle groups together into a Back and Bicep workout. Due to most, (if not all) back exercises utilize your biceps to a higher extent, more than any other muscle. On account of the pulling motion.
Back and Bicep Workout
1. Barbell Deadlift
The Barbell Deadlift is going to be the heaviest lift of the Back and Bicep workout. And the heaviest lift you will probably do in general. This exercise reigns supreme in terms of health.
Many physiotherapists and doctors will tell you, if you had to choose one lift. It would be the Barbell Deadlift.
This move is the best example of a compound movement as it utilizes nearly all of your muscles. If performed correctly, this movement can prevent lower back problems in older age and even reverse said problems.
This is why I have chosen this as one of the main heavy movements for the Back and Bicep workout.
2. Barbell Row
The Barbell Row has been chosen for the Back and Bicep Workout, as it is the most effective exercise for thickness in your upper back . You will be able to move the most amount of weight, as well as it being the easiest upper back compound movement to overload. Meaning more gains.
If you would prefer to swap this exercise for the Dumbbell variant, you may. But there are certain positives and negatives you should be aware of. First of all, It is going to be harder to implement progressive overload.
Due to most Dumbbells, go up in a minimum of 2.5kg of weight. Meaning you cannot micro load with smaller denominations of weight at a time.
As for a positive reason, it is going to bring a more symmetrical look to your Lat muscles. Because one side gets complete focus. Rather than one side compensating for the other, which is bound to happen with the Barbell version.
3. Weighted Pull Up
Our third back movement in the Back and Bicep Workout is the Weighted Pull Up. The weighted Pull Up is going to be the exercise most responsible for width in your upper back, ultimately adding to that V shape.
Since this is a beginner workout series entry, it’s important we get the basics down first. So initially you are going to just perform body weight Pull Ups until you reach 12 reps comfortably. Then we can add on weight.
Do this by finding a hanging weight belt in your gym and add a 5kg plate. Then like the body weight variant reach 12 reps. Then go up in weight, and so on.
4. Unilateral Lat Pulldown
The fourth entry into the Back and Bicep Workout guide, is the Unilateral Lat Pulldown. Iv’e chosen this movement over the standard Lat Pulldown because of the mind muscle connection you can acquire.
The Lat muscles (your wings) which are responsible for upper back width, are notoriously hard to feel working for beginners.
So, a movement like this at the start of your workout is a great addition. As it sets you up with the mind muscle connection and pump for the rest of your. Equating to once again, more gains.
5. Barbell Bicep Curl
In this Back and Bicep Workout there will only be one Bicep movement. Because your Biceps are getting secondarily worked by every single other exercise already included in this Back and Bicep workout.
I’ve chosen the Barbell variant of the Bicep curl because, can you guess the reason? Yes, progressive overload. As previously aforementioned, is best for adding the most weight.
Why only this exercise for Biceps? Well, all Bicep exercises are pretty much the same. As they employ the same range of motion. And since every other exercise in the Back and Bicep Workout uses your biceps anyway. Adding more than one Bicep isolation movement would be overkill.
Similar to doing 8x sets on Bench Press. Split up by Barbells and Dumbbells. I’ts just not necessary. And sometimes even detrimental as injury can come into play.
Sets, Reps Ranges and Rest for the Back and Bicep Workout
Now we come to Sets, Rep ranges and Rest for the Back and Bicep Workout. Just like in the Upper Chest Workout, the Lower Chest workout and the source of this series The Beginner Workout Guide. The guidelines are similar, but not identical.
For the Barbell Deadlift, you will only be doing 3x sets. With the rep ranges of 4-6 for the first Set, and the following Sets 7-12 reps. This is RPT, which has been explained thoroughly in the Beginner Workout guide.
As for the rest of the movements you will be doing 4x Sets. For Compound movements (Barbell Row, weighted Pull Up) the first two Sets you will aim for 4-6 Reps, and the following two Sets aim for 7-12 reps. As for the Isolation movements, aim for 7-12 Reps continually throughout each Set.
Remember, you must match the weight to the reps accordingly! Otherwise it is pointless.
In terms of rest, for Compound movements you will be resting for 3 minutes. As for Isolation exercises, you will rest for 2 minutes. Do not skimp out on your rest time as it is necessary to recharge your CNS (Central Nervous System).
Back and Biceps Workout Tips
Tip 1 – The first tip of the Back and Biceps Workout guide. Has to do with correct Barbell Deadlift form. Please, please, please take the time to learn proper form for this exercise.
If done incorrectly you will not only injure yourself specifically your Back, but will also look incredibly daft. Don’t be a bendy back McGee. I highly recommend watching Jeremy Either’s YouTube video on proper Deadlift form.
Tip 2 – For my second tip. The Back and Biceps Workout is a very compound heavy workout. Which is fundamental for muscle growth as stated in the Beginner Workout Guide.
However compound movements can often cause you to neglect the mind muscle connection which is so important for growth. So, perform the Unilateral Lat Pulldown first. This will set you up with said, mind muscle connection for the rest of your Back and Bicep Workout.
Tip 3 – Lastly, slow it down! Instead of just powering through your Reps as quick as possible, slow them down and really focus on technique and the muscle contracting. This will ultimately lead to better gains.
Back and Biceps Workout Summary
Now we come to the ending summary of the Back and Bicep Workout. I have covered the importance of training your Back for acquiring the V shape.
As well as, the most effective Back and Biceps exercises, which are going to bring you gains the fastest. Along with, Sets, Reps and Rest time. And finishing off with, some tips to help your workout go as smoothly as possible.
In conclusion, don’t forget to focus on your technique and mind muscle connection. For an all en composing guide, check out the Beginner Workout Guide. Which covers everything, from a 4 day split, to counting calories and even how to construct your diet.
So, now use this Back and Bicep Workout information, get in the gym and make those FOREIGN GAINS!