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Arms Workout – How To Get Big Arms

Pretty much every guy wants muscular arms. And why not? They’re awesome :)

So I’m going to tell you exactly how to get big arms in this post.

From personal experience, I get more compliments from the opposite sex about my arms than anything else. Kinda surprising to me, but who can figure out the female mind, eh? 😉

All muscle, including the muscle tissue of the biceps and triceps, require the imposition of a high intensity stress to FORCE growth. Yes, that’s right – FORCE.

Your body would much rather your muscles stay the same size. They require less energy to run that way. So in order for your body to actually build more muscle, it must see that the environment is DEMANDING that you NEED more muscle. If not, it just doesn’t happen. This is where INTENSITY comes in.

We therefore have to hit our biceps and triceps with a high intensity workout. And make no mistake about it, this is a high intensity arms workout!

In the context of this routine, this means going to positive failure in each and every set.

What do I mean by failure?

That point in a set where you cannot possibly complete another positive repetition unassisted.

Make sure you keep a record of each workout – this is critically important! Make a note of the weight you used and the reps completed in each and every set.

For each set listed below, select a weight that forces failure somewhere between 8 and 12 reps.

In each workout shoot for more reps in each set until you can get 12. When you can get 12 reps in any given set, make a note to increase the weight for that set next time by about 10%.

We’ll hit our triceps first since they make up 2/3rds of our arm. Our biceps will get hammered afterwards.

Do each exercise in the order listed.

Note: You’ll want to rest 2-3 minutes between sets as this has been shown to be best for optimizing strength output on all sets. Any less and the muscle will still be too fatigued to perform at its best.

Arms Workout


 2 sets of Decline Triceps Extensions

Why decline? It means more tricep stimulation throughout the upper range of the motion.

 2 sets of Tricep Cable Push Downs

 2 sets of Cable Bent Over Triceps Extensions

 2 sets of ‘McManus’ Pushdowns. For this variation of the pushdown, stand back from the machine so that the cable is at a 45 degree angle. Bend at the knees and lean forward 45 degrees also. Read this post for more details.


 3 sets of Cable Preacher Curls

 2 sets of Straight Barbell Curls

 2 sets of EZ Bar Curls

 1 set of Seated Incline Dumbbell Curls

 2 or 3 sets of Pinwheel Curls (to develop the brachialis muscle)

You don’t necessarily have to work your forearms during the same workout as your upper arms, but if you want to, do 2-3 sets of barbell wrist curls after finishing all of the above sets.

Workout Logs for this routine can be downloaded here ->

The logs are in OpenOffice format. You can download OpenOffice here.

Once downloaded, go to ‘THT Volume Cycles’, then ‘Volume 8-12 reps’. It’s the ‘Wednesday’ workout.

If you’ve just come to MuscleHack for this arms workout, let this be the start of a whole new way of training for you.

Get the rest of the workouts for ALL your body parts and start experiencing the growth you really deserve! THT training is FREE! You’ll ignite new muscle growth in all your body parts on a continuous basis!

If you’re ready for that, enter your name and email address into the fields at the top-right of this page for your free book.

If you’ve experience a plateau in your arm development, or just want some new growth quickly, do yourself a favor and grab ‘The Arms Blast Experiment‘; the program that allows you to add up to almost an inch to your arms in 4-7 days!

Now go train and get those thick arms you always wanted!

Train With Intensity!


Related Post

Mark McManus
Mark McManus
Mark is now available for 1-on-1 consultations to help you take your results to the next level. Click here for more details.
Mark McManus is a trainer & author from Ireland. His work has been featured in major publications all over the world. He is the creator of the free growth-promoting workout Targeted Hypertrophy Training' (THT) and author of the NEW fat-torching system Total Six Pack Abs.
He has also created the BREAKTHROUGH arm and chest maximizer programs The Arms Blast' and 'Chest Blast' workouts.
And if you're a fan of delicious high-protein recipes to fuel your muscle growth, check out his cook book 'Buff Baking' here.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Keith January 7, 2013, 3:03 pm

    Thanks buddy! So I am in Week 3 of my THT 5 HIT cycle, which only has a couple sets for biceps and triceps. I want to incorporate this workout now, but should I wait until I complete my current HIT cycle or is there a way to bring it in now? My guess is the above recommended workout shouldn’t/couldn’t be done more than once a week.

  • Mark McManus January 7, 2013, 4:16 pm

    Keith. This is going to be your THT 5 Volume Routine. Keep your HIT plan as it is.

  • Andy January 7, 2013, 4:18 pm

    Definitely going to give this arm workout a good shot starting friday, but as a dedicated muscle hacker i couldnt help but notice a Bike in the Cable bent over tricep ext… Cardio or what, i feel let down lol

  • Taylor January 7, 2013, 5:02 pm

    Thank you so much for this post! I’ve been doing your THT workouts for almost a year now and every muscle is getting bigger except for my arms it seems so this will definitely help. Is there any chance you could post a really good workout for the traps? I really want big traps (my inspiration stems from Tom Hardy in Warrior which it you have not seen, I highly suggest doing so). Thanks for everything Mark! Words cannot describe how big of a help you have been for the last year or so of my life!

  • Robert T. January 7, 2013, 5:09 pm

    This is highly effective. Thanks Mark! :)

  • Rob January 7, 2013, 5:13 pm

    Mark, you are f@%#in ” jacked and ripped” in that shirt-off pic up top. I mean HUGE inspiration!!!!!! That aside, and just out of curiosity, have you been following more of a MANS diet or GLAD lately ? I realize that there may be some new twists on the diet front in J-n-R but I’m not consistant enough with the basics to even consider moving to that level.

  • Troy January 7, 2013, 6:18 pm

    My wife and are trying your volumne routine now and I performed the cable peacher curl (we have a nautilist (sp) machine) last week for the first time in my life (i’ve been training for about a year and a half now). I don’t know why I didn’t do this before – it’s bad to the bone! I LOVE having resistance at peak contraction and this exercise gives you just that! And my biceps were finally sore (they haven’t been sore in a while!). So far, we’ve both been very sore after each routine in volume – great stuff!

  • Jim January 7, 2013, 9:24 pm

    Just started the THT 5 Volume cycle and now am really looking forward to the Wednesday cycle. Awesome work mate!

  • Mike Huber January 7, 2013, 9:51 pm

    Like Rob posted, You Are A True Inspiration Mark!! Will be doing this arms workout for sure. Not only do I like big arms, but so does my wife. Wink,Wink!! Thank You For All That You Do For Your MuscleHack Followers Mark McManus!!!

  • Robert T. January 8, 2013, 12:42 am

    What is your opinion on close grip chin ups for biceps? Is there an issue with using too much back and not enough bicep? (progressive overload with a weight belt and/or an adjustable weighted vest)?

  • Mark McManus January 8, 2013, 8:54 am

    @Andy. I have the bike for cutting periods, but since I haven’t needed to do full on cut for a long time, it hasn’t been used in ages. I stay pretty lean all the time. Nicely spotted there, eagle eyes!

  • Mark McManus January 8, 2013, 9:00 am

    @Taylor. Work in a higher rep range for the traps, try 12-15 reps to failure per set. But they don’t need a lot of direct work. Hit them after your shoulder. 4 set is good. On other days, any rowing type movement will work the traps too. So make sure you’re incorporating cable rows, bent over rows, and so on, on back day.

  • Mark McManus January 8, 2013, 9:03 am

    @Rob. Thanks, buddy. I’ve been on the GLAD diet now for a couple of years or so. But yes, this is with Jacked ‘N’ Ripped tweaks to ensure I say lean all year round while packing on new muscle.

  • Mark McManus January 8, 2013, 9:04 am

    @Troy. Glad you and your wife are starting to experience the awesomeness of THT :)

  • Mark McManus January 8, 2013, 9:08 am

    @Mike Huber. Much appreciated, pal.
    @Robert T. I like chin ups, but in my opinion the stress isn’t as directly targeted to the biceps as curls. So if you want to do them, add them as a finisher after all other sets are done.