Flexatron: Armed for Battle

Muscle up with Shawn Rhoden's complete arm training program


Sets: 4–5, Reps: 8–12, Weight: 35–55 lbs

For the fifth exercise on Rhoden’s agenda, he heads to the low-back bench with a 35-pound dumbbell. With his core tight, he lifts the dumbbell into position overhead, his upper arm alongside his ear, then slowly bends his elbow to lower the weight behind his head. Throughout, his breathing is steady, his cadence the same, as he strives for 12 reps before switching arms.

Everything I do, I try to take to 12 reps,” he says. “If I’m nearing failure at 8 or 10, I’ll reach down and try to gut out more. This is where having a good spotter comes in handy who will push you to get those few extra reps, and give a little assistance for forced reps when needed.” Click HERE to watch Flexatron train 7 weeks before the 2014 Arnold

Exercise No. 6: CABLE ROPE CURL

Sets: 4–5, Reps: 8–12, Weight: Up to a full stack

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For the next two exercises, Rhoden hits the cable station, starting first with a rope attached to the low pulley for curls. Grasping the ends of the rope with a hammer-style grip and standing upright, he bends his arms fully, making sure to keep his elbows pinned to his sides. He then extends his arms at a deliberate pace, making sure not to let the weight stack touch down before starting the next rep.

The rope helps me hit my biceps, brachialis, and forearms,” he points out. “I’m just working to get a good squeeze at the top and a nice stretch at the bottom.”

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