Do you have trouble bringing your calves up to par with the rest of your physique? Do you toil away at the calf raise machine to no avail? Lots of bodybuilders and weight lifters have a lot of trouble with this muscle group. Calves can be extremely stubborn, almost impossible to grow. However, follow the tips in this calves workout, and your lower legs are sure to take off like never before!
Like Any Other Muscle…
The biggest thing lifters don’t seem to understand is that calves are a muscle like any other. Sure, they may be a bit more stubborn, but then that fact only further proves my point. When you talk to most guys, big calves or not, they almost always reveal that their calf training is an afterthought, something done at the end of workout for a few sets, if that.
This needs to change if you want truly big calves! If you wanted a bigger chest, would you start doing just a couple of easy chest movements at the end of your back workout? If you wanted bigger arms, would you STOP dedicating a training day to them? No! You’d give them more training volume, more weight, and more effort. The same needs to be true of calves.
This workout can certainly be done after training another body part, but the best way to do it would really be to give calves their own training day? Are you already working out five days per week? Take one of your days off and make it your calves workout day. It won’t cut into your recovery very much, but it will allow you to give all the effort necessary for big calves.
Seated Calf Raises
Seated raises work the outside of your calves in a way that standing raises never seem to be able to reach. Since this is the part of the muscle that can really pop and make your whole lower leg look big, we’ll do this movement first in the calves workout.
Warming up gradually, work your way up to a weight that feels HEAVY. Everyone wants to go high reps on calves and feel a burn, and that’s good too, but you’ve got to stimulate them with some heavy poundages. You walk around on them all day long, so they’re used to high reps with light weight! Do 3 sets of 10 reps with as much weight as you can possibly use.
Standing Calf Machine
Now that you’ve done some work with heavy weight, we’re going to start to get a serious burn going. That’s the other important thing about calves workouts – they’ve pretty much got to hurt if you want them to grow. Head on over to your favorite standing calf machine. Since you’re already warmed up, go straight into 5 sets of 15-20 reps. Keep going on each set until you can’t do another rep! This kind of volume and intensity is the only thing that’s going to make your calves grow.
To finish off this killer calves workout, head on over to the leg press to do some toe presses (essentially a variation of the standing calf raise). You’re going to do 3 sets of 20 reps with as heavy a weight as you can handle. After each set, you’re going to stand up and do bodyweight calf raises until you can barely move your ankles! Yes, this will burn terribly, but it will pay tremendous dividends for your calf development if you fight through it.