T Nation

New Arm Workout - Complete Enough?

Hey guys. I have recently started an arm-specific workout that I read about in the July 2007 edition of Men’s Fitness Magazine. Anyway, it obviously works out the arms, but I am wondering if it helps the other body parts as well.

It has some squats and some deadlifts, but I want to make sure I am helping my chest and back and other body parts as well as my arms.

Below is the Excersizes I do, and it is an 8 week plan. The first section below is what I do the first 4 weeks, and the second section is the next 4 weeks.

(I will include the names the Magazine gave them and I hope these are the universal names!)

Thanks alot!

----- FIRST 4 WEEKS -----

Mondays:
Dumbbell Floor Press
Hammer Curl
Lever Press
One-arm lunge w/ row
Dumbbell Split Squat

Wednesdays:
EZ-bar burl
Lying Triceps Extension
Dumbbell Row
Push Press
Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift

Friday:
Incline Alternating Dumbbell Curl
Decline Dumbbell Triceps Extension
Lat Pulldown
Incline Dumbbell Press
Squat

---- SECOND 4 WEEKS ----

Monday:
Decline Dumbbell Triceps Extension
Incline Alternating Dumbbell Curl
Dumbbell Overhead Press
Lat Pulldown
Barbell Romanian Deadlift

Wednesday:
Chinup
Dumbbell Floor Press
Hammer Curl
One-arm Incline Dumbbell Press
Squat

Friday:
Barbell Clean
Dip
EZ-barl Curl
Bench Press
Seated Cable Row

Bascially I increase sets every week for 4 weeks, then start over with the new 4-week plan and then increase the sets every week after that. Article said you should be able to gain 8 pounds of muscle.

Beginners who go balls to the wall in the gym and eat enough food should gain weight regardless of the program. Try that out, eat a ton, and then read up on programming and training methodologies on this site so you have an idea of what to do after this plan runs its course.

Its pretty much an arm specialization routine which puts the rest of the body in a maintenance program. Are you that built everywhere else that as a beginner you need to bring the arms up that far in comparison to the rest of you??

Phill

Oh God no.

I just thought that that workout looked really good, and I thought it may work out other parts of the body as well.

Is it too arm specific? Like am I going to be way out of sync? Should I abandon it or add more to it?

The program must have appealed to you when you saw it, so go ahead and try. Then, like I wrote before, read up on different programs on this site you so know what you want to do after this program.

And remember…WORK!

[quote]Dyepaintball12 wrote:
Oh God no.

I just thought that that workout looked really good, and I thought it may work out other parts of the body as well.

Is it too arm specific? Like am I going to be way out of sync? Should I abandon it or add more to it?[/quote]

Focusing that much on a relatively small body part like arms with little growth potential compared to legs or back when you still lack overall development and mass, you’re probably selling yourself short.

The program does have lifts for other muscle groups, doing squats as the last exercise or heavy pressing and pulling after isolation movements for the bis/tris will definitely limit the effort you will be able to put into those to some extent.

So can I just add some bench press for the chest and rows and more squat/deadlifts to the plan to make it better?

[quote]Dyepaintball12 wrote:
So can I just add some bench press for the chest and rows and more squat/deadlifts to the plan to make it better?[/quote]

Or you could just take one of the dozens of reals programs that are posted on this site…

Lifting 3 times per week doing mostly curls and some presses will do absolutely nothing for your body unless you’re a total beginner

Where are some of these good programs located?

I’m going to go against the grain here and suggest you do the program exactly as it’s written, Dye. By the way, do you recall who the artcle was written by? Men’s Fitness does have some solid coaches write for them, including Cosgrove, Ferruggia, And Dos Remedios.

I would like to know the recommended sets and reps, but regardless, it’s a full body routine being performed 3 times a week, with an emphasis on arm work. For the love of Pete, the routine has him doing cleans and chin-ups in the second month, guys. Lighten up just a tad, huh? This program is way better than your run-of-the-mill bodybuilding/Fiction Fitness routine.

Dye, I’d stick with it as is. After the 8 weeks, return to a general (meaning not emphasizing any particular bodypart) training program. Chad Waterbury’s Triple Total Training is a popular program. I also really like Thibaudeau’s Rennaissance Body Development program.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
I’m going to go against the grain here and suggest you do the program exactly as it’s written, Dye. By the way, do you recall who the artcle was written by? Men’s Fitness does have some solid coaches write for them, including Cosgrove, Ferruggia, And Dos Remedios.

I would like to know the recommended sets and reps, but regardless, it’s a full body routine being performed 3 times a week, with an emphasis on arm work. For the love of Pete, the routine has him doing cleans and chin-ups in the second month, guys. Lighten up just a tad, huh? This program is way better than your run-of-the-mill bodybuilding/Fiction Fitness routine.

Dye, I’d stick with it as is. After the 8 weeks, return to a general (meaning not emphasizing any particular bodypart) training program. Chad Waterbury’s Triple Total Training is a popular program. I also really like Thibaudeau’s Rennaissance Body Development program.[/quote]

What does this have to do with ‘lightening up’? Based on his questions and him obviously being a beginner, I simply don’t consider the program to be a very good choice for the reasons I pointed out.

I definitely agree that giving it a try won’t hurt. Even following a worse program could lead to some gains and most likely to more experience on how one’s body reacts to certain stimuli.

[quote]michael2507 wrote:
What does this have to do with ‘lightening up’? Based on his questions and him obviously being a beginner, I simply don’t consider the program to be a very good choice for the reasons I pointed out.[/quote]

The lighten up comment was a [poor] attempt at channeling Archie Bunker (Lighten up, Edith, huh?). I missed the mark on that one, sorry. But still, it’s a 3-day-a-week full body plan that applies Waterbury’s high frequency principles to arms. Not the worst program in the world, and I don’t think

That said, I will admit that my opinion of the program could change drastically depending on the actual recommended sets and reps…
EZ-bar curl 2x12
Lying Triceps Extension 2x12
Dumbbell Row 4x5
Push Press 4x5
Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift 4x6

is very different from

EZ-bar curl 4x15
Lying Triceps Extension 4x15
Dumbbell Row 2x10
Push Press 2x10
Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift 2x10

[quote]Michael2057 wrote:
The program does have lifts for other muscle groups, doing squats as the last exercise or heavy pressing and pulling after isolation movements for the bis/tris will definitely limit the effort you will be able to put into those to some extent.[/quote]

I agree with that, but that was the point of this routine…emphasizing one bodypart/group while still hitting the rest of the body seriously.

[quote]Petrichor wrote:
Or you could just take one of the dozens of reals programs that are posted on this site…
Lifting 3 times per week doing mostly curls and some presses will do absolutely nothing for your body unless you’re a total beginner[/quote]

These comments really aren’t applicable to the routine being discussed. You make it sound like this program recommends doing concentration curl-kickback-preacher curl-pressdown giant sets every workout.

Regarding your “dozens of real programs” comment: There’s a good possibility I will laugh my balls off if it turns out a T-Nation coach wrote this plan.

I think the moral of the story is that I believe there are some intelligent and effective ways to incorporate isolation exercises into a program, and this was one example of them. Would anyone agree with that statement?

Well the article was written by Jason Ferruggia.

As for the reps, I will include the said reps for each excersize. Then I will put the sets too, but since that changes every week, I’ll write for ex: (2,3,3,4), which means the first week you do 2 sets, then the next week you do 3, then 3, etc. etc.

----- FIRST 4 WEEKS -----

Mondays:
Dumbbell Floor Press= 12-14 reps (3,4,4,5)
Hammer Curl= 12-14 reps (3,4,4,5)
Lever Press= 12-14 reps (3,4,4,5)
One-arm lunge w/ row= 12-14 reps (3,4,4,5)
Dumbbell Split Squat= 12-14 reps (2,2,2,3)

Wednesdays:
EZ-bar burl= 10-12 reps (3,4,4,5)
Lying Triceps Extension= 10-12 reps (3,4,4,5)
Dumbbell Row= 10-12 reps (3,4,4,5)
Push Press= 10-12 reps (3,4,4,5)
Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift= 10-12 reps (2,2,2,3)

Friday:
Incline Alternating Dumbbell Curl= 8-10 reps (3,4,4,5)
Decline Dumbbell Triceps Extension= 8-10 reps (3,4,4,5)
Lat Pulldown= 8-10 reps (3,4,4,5)
Incline Dumbbell Press= 8-10 reps (3,4,4,5)
Squat= 8-10 reps (2,2,2,4)

---- SECOND 4 WEEKS ----
(The sets do not change weekly)

Monday:
Decline Dumbbell Triceps Extension= 8-10 reps (3)
Incline Alternating Dumbbell Curl= 8-10 reps (3)
Dumbbell Overhead Press= 8-10 reps (3)
Lat Pulldown= 8-10 reps (3)
Barbell Romanian Deadlift= 8-10 reps (2)

Wednesday:
Chinup= 6-8 reps (3)
Dumbbell Floor Press= 6-8 reps (3)
Hammer Curl= 6-8 reps (2)
One-arm Incline Dumbbell Press= 6-8 reps (2)
Squat= 6-8 reps (2)

Friday:
Barbell Clean= 4-6 reps (2)
Dip= 5-7 reps (3)
EZ-barl Curl= 4-6 reps (3)
Bench Press= 4-6 reps (2)
Seated Cable Row= 4-6 reps (2)

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
The lighten up comment was a [poor] attempt at channeling Archie Bunker (Lighten up, Edith, huh?). I missed the mark on that one, sorry.[/quote]

Not your fault, I’ve been living in Austria for over 2 decades and haven’t seen ‘All in the Family’ or ‘Archie Bunker’s Place’ since. We only get to see Al Bundy here…

[quote]
Michael2057 wrote:
The program does have lifts for other muscle groups, doing squats as the last exercise or heavy pressing and pulling after isolation movements for the bis/tris will definitely limit the effort you will be able to put into those to some extent.

Chris Colucci wrote:
I agree with that, but that was the point of this routine…emphasizing one bodypart/group while still hitting the rest of the body seriously.[/quote]

This is where I see the problem:

In my opinion, only very few people need to put emphasis on a certain bodypart as opposed to gaining muscle all over. Even if one chooses this route, arms should be one of the last bodyparts that come to mind for most. I don’t consider it the best approach for the OP and neither for anyone else who hasn’t reached a level of development where you can actually speak of a specific bodypart as a ‘weakness’.

For all others, a significant part of the rest of the body could very well not be hit seriously enough, eg. my example of squats as the last exercise. While it may be sufficient for maintenance, why just maintain when you could build and there is still lots of work to do?

As stated above, it’s not that it isn’t a decent routine for arm specialization, I just don’t believe arm specialization is the way to go at the stage of development most trainees have reached.

[quote]
Chris Colucci wrote:
I think the moral of the story is that I believe there are some intelligent and effective ways to incorporate isolation exercises into a program, and this was one example of them. Would anyone agree with that statement?[/quote]

No disagreement here.

Well couldnt I just add a few more excersizes per day for my chest/back that would even out the workout?

If I were you, I’d just leave the plan as is - you have 3-5 sets per workout of chest/back exercises already in the plan. This should be enough work to at least maintain your chest and back. Since this plan is an arm specialization routine, if you added chest and back exercises, it would be more of a regular old routine - and you can find plenty of those in the article section. Don’t worry, your chest and back won’t wither away! =]