4 Exercises for Bigger Biceps | IFBB Pro Romane Lanceford

by Primeval Labs on May 15, 2019

Struggling to see results from your bicep workouts? Check out these top arm-building tips from IFBB Pro and Primeval Labs Athlete Romane Lanceford as he takes you through his full bicep training routine.

Romane Lanceford’s 3 Keys to Bigger Biceps

Romane bases his arm training around three core concepts:

Heavy Weight

Of the three mechanisms that drive hypertrophy, mechanical tension is the most important one.

Mechanical tension simply refers to good, old fashioned heavy lifting. Placing high amounts of tension on a muscle stimulates type 2 muscle fibers, which are the ones that have the greatest potential for growth.


Romane uses two exercises in today’s bicep workout focused on moving heavy weight in the cable EZ Bar Curl and alternating dumbbell curl.

Time under tension (TUT)

Heavy weights and lower reps are great for building muscle, but they don’t keep your muscles under tension very long.

Enter lighter weight, higher rep training which increases the amount of time your muscles are under tension and helps stimulate the slow-twitch fibers in your biceps. Performing exercises with greater time under tension creates more metabolic stress in the muscle, forces more blood to them, and generates a fantastic muscle pump.


Romane utilizes the incline dumbbell curl to address this aspect of his bicep training.

Volume

Lifting heavy is essential to building muscle and strength, but it’s not the only thing that matters. You also have to perform enough total weekly volume using an appropriately heavy load to force muscles to grow. As such, Romane includes exercises that not only address mechanical tension, but ones that also allow him to get in enough volume.


To ramp up bicep training volume, Romane opts for good, ole’ 21s performed with an EZ bar.

Romane Lanceford Top 4 Exercises for Bigger Biceps

Cable EZ Bar Curls

Romane likes to use the EZ Bar attachment for these curls because it’s a bit easier on his wrists when using a close grip. Using a straight bar can sometimes place undue stress on the wrists when using a close grip and heavier loads for curls.


The advantage to using the cable machine for this exercise as opposed to free weights is that cables allow for constant tension on the biceps throughout the entire range of motion. When using free weights, tension is significantly reduced on the biceps at the top and the bottom of the curl.


With cables, there is no EZ point -- tension is constantly applied to them, increasing the amount of work the biceps have to do and the amount of metabolic stress generated during each set (both of which support the muscle-building process).


As with all bicep exercises, make sure to squeeze the biceps as hard as you can at the top of the movement and slowly lower the weights to the bottom. Simply letting gravity take over the eccentric and not “resisting” the weight down means you’re losing out of 50% of muscle-building potential of each rep of the curl.

Alternating Dumbbell Curls (3 sets, 8-10 reps)

Romane begins with his hands supinated (palms facing forward) as opposed to the neutral grip many individuals use at the start of each alternating dumbbell curl. At the top of each rep, Romane turns his pinky out to create an even stronger contraction on the biceps.


Similar to the Cable Machine EZ Bar Curls, this is another “heavy weight” exercise for Romane, where he wants to fail in the 8-10 rep range.

Incline Dumbbell Curls (3 sets, 8-10 reps)

The incline dumbbell curl is one of Romane’s favorite exercises for the biceps as it places a great stretch on the two-headed muscle, and it also helps take the shoulder out of the curling movement, thereby limiting the amount of cheating that you can do.


This is the exercise in Romane’s bicep workout that focuses on maximizing time under tension (TUT) and creating lots of metabolic stress in the muscle. As we’ve already stated, metabolic stress is one of the three mechanisms that drives hypertrophy.


Romane uses a 3-second concentric and a 3-second eccentric on every rep of the incline dumbbell curl. Working at this slow, deliberate tempo helps foster a robust mind-muscle connection and forces you to focus on executing each rep with perfect form.



Obviously with the elongated lifting tempo, you will likely have to use lighter weights than if you were to perform a 1-second up and 1-second down tempo with the incline dumbbell curl.

21's EZ Bar Curl (4 sets, 7 / 7 / 7 reps)

To finish off the workout and really fry the biceps, Romane performs “21s” using the EZ Bar. 21s are an old-school method for building the biceps, and they are a staple exercise in Romane’s training.


If you’ve never tried 21s before with curls, here’s how it goes.

  • Perform 7 partial reps from the bottom of the curl to the midpoint, then
  • Immediately perform 7 more partials from the midpoint of the curl to the top, then
  • Immediately perform 7 full range of motion reps

As you can see, each set has you performing 21 repetitions. Across four working sets, this means you’re really performing a total of 84 reps! That’s a tremendous amount of volume and will create a muscle pump like no other.

 


Romane Lanceford Arm Workout for Bigger Biceps


Exercise

Sets

Reps

Cable EZ Bar Curls

3

10

Alternating DB Curls

3

8-10

Incline DB Curls

3

8-10

21s w/ EZ Bar

4

7+7+7

Romane Lanceford Intra Workout Supplement Stack

Before heading into his training sessions, Romane mixes up a full serving of Intracell 7 (two scoops) along with one scoop of EAA Max.


This combination supplies over 20 grams of fast-digesting carbohydrates to supports quicker intra-set recovery during the workout, increased stamina, enhanced blood flow, and massive muscle pumps.


Romane’s intra workout stack also supplies a robust dose of essential amino acids to support protein synthesis as well as muscle growth and recovery. And there’s also valuable electrolytes and hydration aids in the form of taurine and GlycerPump.

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