Heavy-Duty Routines for Standout Triceps

Everyone wants to have rockin’ arms, including me. Sure, weight lifting makes you feel strong, inside and out. But a lot of people also love to look at rockin’ arms. I posted my favorite shoulder workout recently, so now I think it’s time to talk about building your triceps.

That jiggly triceps thing is something that just happens – unless you lift weights and get lean with clean eating. But there’s one catch: You have to lift heavy. No Barbie weights here, no five or even ten pound weights, thank you. Yes, if you are new to weights you need to work your way up to heavy weights. But if you are already lifting weights, then I’m here to encourage you to GO HEAVY.

Know your Body Type First

I’m an ectomorph and I have to work really hard to put on muscle. I tend to avoid epic cardio sessions because I don’t want to get too lean. It may sound ideal, but I envy you guys who have athletic frames. However, we have to accept who we are and find ways to work around our genetic limitations. I approach this by getting enough calories and lifting heavy most of the time.

My point is that everyone has a different body type and you’ll get different results from lifting heavy. If you’re a mesomorph, you have a naturally athletic frame. Once you start lifting weights, you see results quickly. You may even need to watch how heavy you go if you don’t want big, muscular thighs or arms. Your strategy might be to integrate heavy and light lifting days in the same week. And you’ll want to keep up on your cardio to help you stay lean.

The endomorph has a round physique, trouble losing fat, and will need to concentrate on cardio even more. Only a lean body shows muscle, so that’s your main challenge. It can be done, however – I’ve seen endomorphs who lift weights and have athletic, lean bodies.

Workouts for Jiggle-Free Arms

Now that you know you can go heavy, check out my favorite triceps workouts. Start light if you need to but work up to lifting as heavy as you can for 10-12 reps. If you can’t lift this many reps, go down in weight. If you can lift more than this, go up in weight. It’s really that simple. The point is to fatigue the muscles during each set (three total) and rest for 60 seconds between each set (no more). Mix up these exercises however you want – these routines are only suggestions. These routines hit all three tricep heads during each session.

Remember, you can find video instructions for any of these exercises on muscleandstrength.com.

Workout 1:

  • Reverse Grip Triceps Extension (barbell or EZ bar) (pushdown)
  • One-arm Tricep Overhead Extension (dumbbell)
  • EZ Bar Lying Tricep Extension (Skullcrusher)

Workout 2:

  • Cable Tricep Extension with V-bar (pushdown)
  • High Pulley Overhead Tricep Extension (rope extension)
  • Back-of-the Head Lying Tricep Extension

Workout 3:

  • Cable Tricep Extension with Rope (pushdown)
  • Standing Barbell Behind-the-Head Extension
  • Reverse Grip Lying Tricep Extension (Skullcrusher)

Mixing It Up

  • Use any number of weight lifting techniques that’ll give you an even better burn.
  • Change the attachment or handle of the cable machine (e.g., v-grip, rope, straight bar, EZ bar).
  • Change your grip to narrow (e.g., pushups) or reverse.

12 thoughts on “Heavy-Duty Routines for Standout Triceps

  1. My triceps are my worst feature right now. It’s weird how that is…swimming like I do has developed my shoulders, deltoids, back, and biceps very nicely but it does nothing for the triceps!


  2. You are inspiring me… I’m sort of due to LIFT! Thanks for the reminder of mixing up the grips and stuff – the body is amazing, eh? Soooooo many choices! Gotta love the drop sets for tri’s too for some of the cable stuff. YOWZA!


  3. Mesomorph=ME!!! Great post, triceps are such an important muscle to work for great arms and to balance the typically stronger biceps. BTW, you’re looking great – competition soon???


    • Yep, and you look great, Robyn. I love the idea of knowing your body type and working with it instead of trying to force it to do something it won’t do naturally. I really like working triceps – I can feel the burn pretty easily since it’s a small muscle group! Competition, hmm… I think that’s a little too much sacrifice for me, but thanks for the compliment!!


  4. Great Article. Triceps are a hard muscle to make sure they stand out because they get so much work with other compound exercises. You can’t neglect them though or you will end up with scrawny looking arms.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s