I can’t imagine I’m the only person out there that finds the gym exhausting sometimes. No, not working out. That is the good kind of exhausting.

As a proud introvert, I’ll frequently drive thirty minutes out of my way and pay a drop-in fee just so I know I’ll get my workout in without needing to socialize. And other times, if I’m feeling extra reclusive, I’ll just whip out the resistance bands and pump away for thirty minutes in my living room. 

There are plenty more reasons to lift at home, that’s just one of mine. For example, gyms can be a breeding ground for germs. But this article isn’t about those of you who should probably wipe off your freaking bench after you sweat all over it. It’s about how to build your arms. While watching Netflix…on that note, why is Netflix and Pump not a thing yet?! 

Home Defense: ARM Yourself

Starting off the home workout series right with an arms workout. After all, as I write this, it’s a Saturday. I could be wrong, but I’m fairly certain a weekend isn’t complete if there isn’t at least one arms day session.

First thing’s first. If you don’t have resistance bands and don’t plan on ever doing any resistant band training…thanks for reading? Or just go grab some bands via this link and prepare yourself in case you ever do decide to switch up your routine. And, if you’re reading this as you get ready for the gym, go brew yourself your preferred pre-workout stack. (Why yes, that was a shameless plug.) 

Trials of Triceps

Sure, you could start your workout with biceps. It’s what most people obsess over. Triceps make up 2/3 of your upper arm, though. So if you really want to stretch those sleeves, prioritize appropriately. 

Let’s get to it. *cracks knuckles*

Floor Triceps Extensions: 4 x 8-12

These are hands down one of my favorite bodyweight triceps exercises. Hell, I do them even when I’m not working out at home. They are great for core strength and hit pretty much every head of the triceps. 

  • Start in a plank with your arms shoulder-width apart and your elbows on the ground. Your elbows should be about in line with your lower chest. 
  • Keeping your core tight, press through your hands to lift yourself up until your arms are nearly straight.
  • As slowly as possible, lower yourself back down into plank position

Modifications:

  1. To lower the weight, do them from your knees
  2. On the negative portion of the exercise, you can do one arm at a time

Reverse Grip Banded Triceps Pressdown 4 x 12-20

These are a fantastic way to target the medial head of the triceps. Just make sure to really focus on that contraction.

  • Place a few inches of length of the band over the top of a door, and close the door — the door should be closed all the way. Make sure the band is secure. 
  • Grip the bottom portion of the band with your palms up, and hands about shoulder-width
  • To begin, take a few steps back, and lean forward slightly. Keep your elbows tight at your sides. The angle of flexion should be about forty degrees so your triceps start in a stretched position. You should already feel some tension in the band when you start.
  • Without using your shoulders, pulldown on the band until your wrists are nearly parallel with your thighs and your triceps are fully contracted. Hold the contraction for 1-2 seconds.
  • Counting to four, perform the negative portion of the rep. Don’t let your elbows drag too far forward. They should remain mostly stationary.

Single Arm Neutral Grip Triceps Pressdown 4 x 12-20

I personally like doing these without going full ROM (range of motion). I focus on the stretch as well as just keeping blood pumping into the muscles. This provides a great pump, especially in the long head of the triceps. 

  • Place a few inches of length of the band over the top of a door, and close the door — the door should be closed all the way. Make sure the band is secure. 
  • You’ll notice the band loops at the bottom. Grab both sides of the band with one hand so it will feel like you’re gripping two bands. Your hand will be in a neutral grip.
  • Move back just far enough to feel a slight stretch. Starting position will be elbow tight at your side, elbow at a thirty-degree angle.
  • Keeping elbow tight at your side, pull down on the band. Stop just short of lockout.
  • Without pausing, perform the negative portion of the rep. Go until you feel a solid stretch, then repeat.

Coffee Table and Couch Dips 4 x 12-20

These can be done using any two platforms of similar height. In this example, we’ll use a coffee table and a couch. 

  • Take the cushions off the couch so you have a stable place to put your heels on
  • Move the coffee table far enough away so that your heels rest comfortably near the edge of the couch that’s closest to your center of gravity. 
    • You should be able to perform the exercise without your ankle touching the couch, or your waist/back touching the coffee table
  • Place your hands on the coffee table about shoulder-width apart (If you need it to be more difficult, try a closer hand position)
  • With your heels on the couch and arms locked out, slowly descend until your elbows are bent at a ninety-degree angle (the negative portion of the repetition should take about 4 seconds)
  • Perform the positive portion of the rep by pushing through your hands.
  • At the top, squeeze the contraction but don’t fully lock out so as not to take tension off the muscle

Modification: You can rest your heels on the ground to make this easier. You can also put them at the beginning of your workout to make them easier.

Triceps Push-Ups Mechanical Drop-set

Finish him! Some people think close grip push-ups are easy. They haven’t tried incorporating mechanical drop sets. Mechanical drop sets are a way to extend a set past muscle failure without dropping the weight, which is great for bodyweight exercises since…well, you know.

Diamond Push Ups 3 x 12-20

  • Start in a push-up position with your hands forming a diamond
  • Slowly descend until your elbows are at a sixty-degree angle. Don’t be the person that does silly half reps on push-ups. You’ll feel a good stretch in your triceps. Your elbows might flare a little to the side, but that’s fine.
  • Explode back up and contract. 

Close Grip Push-Ups 3 x 12-20 (If you get less than 12 reps, that’s fine! All that matters is that you’re pushing yourself as hard as you can)

  • After you’ve hit failure on the Diamond push-ups, switch your hand placement so that they’re just narrower than shoulder width. 
  • Without resting, slowly perform the negative portion of the rep
  • Once at sixty degrees, with the triceps stretched, explode back to your starting position

Push-Ups 3 x 12-20 (again, reps don’t really matter. Just get as many as you can)

  • Without resting, start your last portion of this lengthy set
  • To perform a push-up…Oh, come on. You know how to do a push-up.

Biceps

All exercises will be performed with 30-60 seconds of rest time. To make things more difficult, you can perform the last three exercises in a superset fashion — without resting between exercises.

Single Arm Band Angled Curls 4 x 12-20

Starting off this biceps workout with some concentrated curls. I like doing some single-arm exercises to start off a biceps workout because it helps me zone in and “connect” more with the muscle. The mind-muscle connection plays a critical role in hypertrophy (growth).

These can be done using the underside of a railing or door. Since not all of us have access to railings (that apartment life), I’ll be using a door.

  • Place a few inches of length of the band under the base of a door, and close the door. Make sure the band is secure. 
  • Grip the end of the band using a supinated grip
  • Step back until you feel the tension in the band. Then step back another few feet
  • Your arm will be in front of you as though you were doing single arm preacher curls
  • Place your non-working hand under your working arm’s triceps for support and to keep your elbow from dragging back.
  • Without pulling with your shoulder, curl up until you feel a full contraction in your biceps.
  • Slowly perform the negative portion.
  • Repeat on both arms.

Band Neutral Grip Curls 4 x 12-20

We’ve all done rope curls. Right? They’re a great exercise for targeting the brachialis portion of the biceps (and help build thickness). You can do these using the bottom of the door or your feet. For this example, we’ll use the feet though.

  • Standing with your feet a little narrower than shoulder-width, loop the band under the balls of your feet
  • Grip the sides of the band in a neutral (hammer) position
  • Curl up until your elbows are at a fifty-degree angle
  • Squeezing, focus on the sides of the arm
  • Perform the negative portion of the rep and make sure to get the full stretch.

Modification: Depending on your height, the bottom quarter of your repetitions will feel pretty much useless. That’s just how resistance bands work. If this applies to you, then don’t bother with the bottom portion of the rep. We want to keep constant tension on the muscle.

Band Biceps Curls 4 x 12-20

The OG Biceps Curl. But with a resistance band. There’s a reason the resistance band biceps curl is a staple in every bodybuilder’s routine when they “pump up” backstage. What’s that reason, you ask? Because it gives you a gnarly pump. Bet you didn’t see that answer coming, huh?

  • Standing with your feet a little narrower than shoulder-width, loop the band under the balls of your feet.
  • Grip the top loop of the resistance band with a supinated grip (palms up)
  • Keeping your elbows tight at your side, curl until your hands nearly touch your shoulders.
  • Squeeze as hard as you can
  • Slowly perform the negative.

Bonus Modification:

  1. Each rep switch up the angle of pull. Perform the first rep by curling inward toward your middle pec. On the second rep, curl directly in front of you. On the third rep, try pulling the band as far apart as you can while you curl. Repeat until your biceps cry. Then keep going.

Related Questions

What’s a good way to build my biceps at the gym? Hit different angles. Use different rep ranges. Oh, and check out this article on how to build bigger biceps. 

I have a difficult time getting a pump on arms day; what should I do? Hold your contractions longer, stretch between sets. Drop your rest time. HYDRATE! For more information, check dis article about on how to optimize the pump.

What if I want to do an at-home Legs Day Workout? Wow, that’s not remotely related…oh well. Try this one.

 

Peace homies.

fit guy author
Author: Logan Peterson
IG: loganlpeterson

 

 

Logan Peterson

Logan Peterson is an avid writer and an unprofessional, non-competitive bodybuilder. Logan has several degrees, all of which he made up to sound more credible (for obvious reasons, Legal said he can’t list them). In truth, he simply has an insatiable curiosity. After eleven years of obsessive research, he knows too much about fitness, nutrition, and supplementation for his own good. Despite all appearances, he’s fiercely nerdy. Outside of fitness, his passions are reading and writing; his genre interests run the gamut from litrpg to satire. Due to ADHD, he’s currently working on several novels, and will likely publish all of them at once. And yes, he wrote his own bio...in third person.

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