When it comes to physical appearance, few things command attention like a pair of well-sculpted biceps. The kind of biceps that steal the spotlight, no matter what shirt you’re wearing. But the benefits of big biceps extend beyond aesthetics — they play a critical role in various pulling exercises, giving you the ability to handle heavier weights with pinpoint control.
Eccentric exercises engage the muscle at its strongest when stretched, essentially harnessing the power of gravity to supercharge your gains. It’s high-level training at its finest.
On the other hand, explosive exercises focus on fast-twitch muscle fibers, boosting your strength and speed in a way that’s needed for more advanced bicep movements, like one-arm pull-ups.
And maybe the best part of this workout? No weights. No gym. Just you, a pull-up bar, and the drive to build beautiful biceps. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill workout — this is a blueprint for how to get bigger biceps that’s as functional as it is effective. So get ready to roll up your sleeves and embark on a 30-day journey to bigger, stronger biceps. Let’s get started.
Biceps are not necessarily hard to grow, but they do require the right mix of essential muscle-building elements.
First and foremost, your diet needs to be high in protein. Like the crucial fuel to a powerful engine, protein is the building block your muscles need to repair and grow after a workout.
You also need to be doing the right exercises. A variety of movements that target different areas of the biceps is key.
Consistency is another crucial factor. Biceps won’t grow overnight — they need regular, persistent training. Like anything worthwhile, building big biceps takes time, patience, and an unwavering commitment to your workout routine.
Rest is also important. Your biceps need time to recover and rebuild the muscle fibers that have been broken down during the workout.
How Long Does It Take To Get Bigger Biceps?
Depending on individual factors such as genetics, diet, experience, and the intensity and consistency of your workouts, building bigger biceps will usually take anywhere from 4 weeks to 4 months.
Undoubtedly, the key to growing bigger biceps is consistency and intensity. Biceps, like any muscle group, need to be worked with intensity on a regular basis in order to grow. This means, every week, you need to be putting your biceps through a challenging workout that pushes them to their limits.
Diet plays a pivotal role too, particularly your protein intake. Protein acts as the building blocks your muscles need to repair and grow after a strenuous workout. Specifically, leucine, an essential amino acid found in protein, is crucial for muscle growth. It triggers muscle protein synthesis, the process your body uses to build muscle. To boost your daily leucine intake, consider adding a BCAA (branched-chain amino acid) supplement to your nutrition regimen.
And while intensity, protein, and leucine are crucial, so is rest. This isn’t just about giving your muscles a break, it’s about allowing your Central Nervous System (CNS) time to recover. Your CNS is heavily involved in muscle contraction and growth. When you overwork it without providing sufficient rest, it can lead to decreased muscle performance and growth.
Why Won’t My Biceps Grow?
If your biceps aren’t growing, it could be due to a few potential reasons.
The first thing you need to assess is your bicep workout intensity and variety. Your biceps need to be properly challenged to grow. If you’re doing the same exercises with the same weight over and over, your muscles will adapt, and growth will plateau. Try mixing up your workout with different bicep exercises and gradually increasing the weight or reps every few weeks.
You also need to make sure that your diet is supporting your muscle growth goals. Protein, as mentioned earlier, is crucial for muscle repair and growth. If you’re not getting enough protein, especially the amino acid leucine, your muscles won’t have the necessary building blocks to grow. Consider incorporating a BCAA supplement into your nutrition regimen to boost your leucine intake. Another supplement to consider is creatine. Creatine has been shown to support muscle recovery and growth by increasing your muscles’ energy during intense workouts, thus allowing you to work out harder and longer.
Thirdly, your biceps might not be growing because you may not be giving your body, specifically your Central Nervous System (CNS), enough time to recover between workouts. Overworking your muscles without sufficient rest can lead to decreased muscle performance and growth. Remember, rest can be just as important as the workout itself.
Lastly, remember that patience is key. Building muscle takes time, and biceps are no exception. You may not see changes immediately, but with consistent and intense workouts, the right protein and creatine intake, and sufficient rest, you’ll start seeing growth over time.
Can I Train Biceps Every Day?
It can be tempting to train your biceps every day in the hopes of growing them quicker, but it’s not the most effective or healthy approach. Muscles, including your biceps, don’t grow during the workout itself, but in the recovery phase afterwards.
When you train a muscle group, you’re essentially causing microscopic damage to the muscle fibers. It’s during the recovery period, when your body repairs these damaged fibers, that muscle growth happens. This repair process requires time, usually around 48 hours, depending on the intensity of your workout.
If you train your biceps every day, you’re not giving them the necessary time to recover and grow. Moreover, you risk overtraining, which can lead to decreased performance, injury, and even muscle loss. What’s more, training your biceps every day will most likely lead to Central Nervous System (CNS) fatigue, which is detrimental to your muscle growth and overall performance. If your CNS becomes overloaded it will result in diminished muscle contractions, which means your workouts become less effective, and your biceps don’t get the stimulation they need to grow.
So, while it might seem like training your biceps every day would lead to faster results, without proper rest, you will actually be setting your progress back.
How To Get Bigger Biceps Without Weights
It’s time to delve into the nitty-gritty of how to get bigger biceps without weights. This workout is designed around six powerful exercises that harness the power of eccentric and explosive movements.
Eccentric movements refer to the phase of the exercise where the muscle lengthens, or the ‘lowering’ part of the movement, like the downward phase of a pull-up. The magic of eccentric training lies in controlling this portion of the movement, as it works your muscle against gravity, ultimately leading to greater muscle gains.
Explosive exercises, on the other hand, help to develop your fast-twitch muscle fibers, resulting in improved speed and strength — essential for all compound pulling exercises.
In this workout, your aim is to execute these exercises with a focus on controlling the eccentric portion of each movement. Start with one round, and work your way up until you’re able to complete 3-4 rounds consistently.
1. Jumping One Arm Pull-Ups
Kick off this exercise by positioning yourself under a pull-up bar, arm extended to reach the bar. Jump upwards while engaging your bicep, pulling yourself past the bar with one hand. The ascent is just the beginning — it’s the descent that really counts.
Ease yourself back down in a slow, controlled manner, the downward or eccentric movement harnessing the strength of your biceps. Touch back down to complete one rep.
If this version of this exercise feels too hard, don’t worry. Try the assisted version using a resistance band, or use your other arm to hold onto the side while you’re doing the rep.
Do 7 reps for each arm.
2. Chin Ups One Arm Negative
Position yourself under a pull-up bar, ready to perform a regular chin-up. Using both arms, hoist yourself up, pulling yourself past the bar.
Once your chin is above the bar, shift your weight towards one side — the side you’ll be descending on. At this point, release your grip with the opposite hand.
Begin your descent, using just one arm to control the downward motion. It’s this slow, controlled descent that engages your bicep and puts it to work. Lower yourself until your arm is fully extended, completing one rep.
Do 5 reps for each arm.
3. Behind The Head Chin Ups
Position yourself under a pull-up bar with a wide grip, palms facing away from you. This wider grip will engage more of your bicep muscle, adding a fresh challenge to the traditional chin-up.
With a powerful push, hoist yourself up but instead of pulling your chin above the bar, you’re aiming to get your head in front of the bar.
As your head clears the bar behind you, slowly lower yourself back down. Remember, it’s all about the controlled, slow descent, giving your biceps a workout they won’t forget.
Touch back down to complete one rep.
Do 10 reps.
4. Bar Curls
Start by positioning yourself under the low bar or rings, hands extended and gripping the bar or rings with an underhand grip. Your body should be at a slight angle to the ground, feet planted firmly.
Engage your biceps and pull your body towards the bar or rings, until your chest is touching or nearly touching. Ensure your movements are slow and controlled, as it’s the intensity of the contraction and the slow release that really work your biceps.
Lower yourself back down in a controlled manner to complete one rep. Remember, rushing won’t get you anywhere — it’s all about the slow, controlled movement.
Do 12 reps.
5. Archer Australian Chin Ups
Begin by positioning yourself under the low bar, your body at a slight angle to the ground. Extend your hands to grip the bar, one hand closer to your body than the other. Your body should be straight, your feet planted firmly on the ground.
Engage your biceps and pull your body towards the bar, focusing on the arm that’s closer to your body. The key here is to mimic the motion of drawing a bow, hence the name ‘Archer’.
At the top of the movement, your chest should be close to the bar, with one arm bent and the other extended. Lower yourself back down in a slow, controlled manner. The power of this exercise lies in the eccentric movement, the phase where your bicep muscle is stretched under tension.
Do 10 reps for each arm.
6. Behind The Back Australian Pull Ups
Start by positioning yourself under the bar, body at a slight angle to the ground. Extend your hands behind your back to grip the bar with an overhand grip. Feet should be firmly planted on the ground, body straight. This unusual position not only provides a new challenge but also targets your biceps from a different angle.
Engage your biceps and pull your body towards the bar, keeping your hands behind your back all the while. This unconventional movement might feel strange at first, but it’s a great way to stimulate your biceps and promote muscle growth.
At the top of the movement, your upper back should be close to the bar. Lower yourself back down in a slow, controlled manner. The eccentric movement, where your biceps are under tension, is where the magic happens.