Most people who are training are trying to either bulk up or cut down. My situation is a little different. Here are the details...
I weigh about 225 lbs. with around 11% BF. For the most part I'm happy with my physique. However, my upper body has always been disproportionately bigger than my lower body. I would like to bulk up my legs (especially my calves) while at the same time not adding much size to my upper body and bringing my overall bodyfat down.
In the last year or so I've done approx. two lower body workouts for each upper body workout. This has helped but the gap still exists between my upper body size and my lower body size. I'm wondering if there's something missing here that might allow me to balance out a bit better. Perhaps higher rep sets for upper body?
If anyone has any ideas or has successfully battled this problem before, please reply. Thanks!
How often do you work your legs, what exactly does your routine look like..? Might as well get those questions out of the way.
And I don't think that working upper body less, or doing high reps is the perfect solution. Sure, it'll make your upper body smaller so more proportional, but it won't help your legs any. Also, if your upper body grew so quick at the beginning, it'll probably slow down in growth now. Thinking you need to worry about what to do to make your legs grow, not how to make your upper body smaller.
So, what have you tried for legs in the past? What doesn't work for you?
OK, but I'll warn you that it's a bit unorthodox.
Calves - 30 minutes, typically standing calf press and seated calf press (I try to follow the info in Arnold's Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding as he seemed to do a good job of getting skinny calves bigger)
Hamstrings - Straight-legged deadlifts usually with some leg curls to finish off
Squats - 10 sets of 5 reps each (this was a routine featured in Muscle Media a while back that I like, my quads have responded well to this and are getting pretty close to where I want to be)
Calves - 15 minutes, same as Monday except less sets
Calves - same as Monday
Lats, Shoulders, Upper Back - I do the Body For Life routine for these body parts
Chest, Tris, Bis, Forearm - Body for Life again
I'll do abs 3x/week or so either after one of these workouts or on an off-day.
I typically do cardio 2x-3x/week. Either HIIT or full-court basketball.
I'm eating 5x-6x/day. Typically three or four solid-food meals and one or two protein or mass-gaining shakes.
Supplementing with 5g of creatine and 10g of glutamine post-workout as well as vitamins/anti-oxidants.
Last edited by DannyOcean; 04-23-2003 at 12:35 PM.
I do squats and am working my way up to heavier weights while trying to maintain good form so as to prevent injury. To be honest, my quads are responding and I'm not that far away from being where I want to be. I'm fairly confident that if I stay the course with squats I'll be right about where I want to be in 3 months or less.Originally posted by Fenbay
One word: squats ...well, two words: heavy squats
It seems that what a lot of this boils down to is improving my calves. It sounds strange to say that at 225 lbs., I feel that my calves are too skinny but that's what it seems like to me.
A bit unorthodox is the best way to say it by all means.. I'm taking a guess you've tried lower volume on those legs (calves and quads.. cause that's a lot of time and sets your talking) and it didn't work?
What I'm trying right now for my own (seeing as I don't respond great to 2-3 sets once a week, is twice a week with one typical "keep at this weight, do this many sets x this many reps" and the other day doing a drop set, or a anti-drop set (start low, do 15, and keep adding weight till I can't get 10. No rest). So far not bad results, but then that's me. Is what your doing giving you results?
And while squats are a beautiful exercise, I'd almost consider doing half those sets and tossing in something a little more isolated. But then, it's working for you, so maybe I wouldn't worry about that.
Or just get implants.
Like Arnold did.
*puts on flak jacket
I think calves have a TON to do with genetics. Like any muscle I'm sure they can be made larger by good work, but calves for some reason seem especially genetic.
I was lucky enough to get huge calves. In fact, while my BF% is way too high right now my calves have always stayed striated and ultra defined compared to my biceps etc. So based on some of that anecdotal information I tend to think it's luck of the draw.
I do think, however, that with the right routine/diet/supps etc anyone can build upon what they have to work with.