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Animal Arms, Volume 2

There is no ability, in this peculiar subculture of ours that is valued as greatly as the ability to press ponderous poundage. Be it the bench press, the military press, barbell incline or decline or simply tossing around some three-figure dumbbells, the power to push some serious weight is a priceless resource in the world of iron. To be shockingly strong in these movements, true Animals know that they must overlook nothing in their training. They realize that to be able to hoist awesome tonnage they must rely in large part on a secondary muscle group. Yeah, you heard me. If you want to press with the big boys, you need triceps that are strong as fuck.

First and foremost, however, we are bodybuilders--the rarest of vocations in which form and function go hand in hand. Knowing that the triceps constitute two-thirds of the upper arm, they are always prioritized and blasted into submission. Heavy slabs of horseshoe-shaped beef hanging from the rear delts, nothing fills out a shirtsleeve quite like a pair of blown-out triceps. You must know for a fact, that without huge tris, there is no way to push your arms into that rarified 20+ inch stratosphere. We gotta pound those triceps with heavy ass weight and then burn them to ashes with supersets, burnouts and static pauses. It ain't gonna be pretty, but then again, nothing in this crazy game ever is.

Exercise 1: Triangle Bar Cable Pushdowns

This exercise serves multiple purposes. First it allows you to warm up your triceps and your elbows. Secondly, it isolates your triceps necessitating that they do all of the work in moving the weight. Third, they place you at a biomechanically advantageous position where you can handle heavy weights with little chance for injury. Using the angled attachment on a high cable pulley and maintaining good posture with your elbows firmly at you sides, pyramid up in weight over the course of five sets. Extending into a full contraction at the bottom on sets ranging from 20 reps on your first set down to 6-8 on your heaviest set.

Exercise 2: Skull Crushers

This is an ominously named exercise that can only truly be hazardous when one approaches it carelessly. Load up an EZ-curl bar with a weight you can handle for a relatively easy 12 reps and have your spotter hand you the bar. Lying on a flat bench grip the bar with you hands spaced about 6 inches apart. With arms extended straight up in the air and elbows between nose and eye level, lower the bar slowly to your upper forehead and then back up in a precise but explosive fashion. Raise the weight over the course of 2 more sets performing 10 and 6 reps respectively.

Exercise 3: Superset: Unilateral Overhead Dumbbell Extensions w/ Dumbbell Kickbacks

Select a dumbbell of moderate weight. Raise one arm straight overhead and slowly lower the dumbbell to a spot just behind your head, then extend the dumbbell skyward, deliberately stretching and contracting the triceps. Repeat with the opposite arm. Now, without pause, return the dumbbell to the original arm and, leaning forward, perform a dumbbell kickback, slowly lowering the weight with your elbow firmly at your side and then pushing it back forcefully, in your mind envisioning flexing your triceps with weight in your hand against gravity. This movement will be repeated for the other arm. Follow this sequence twice more, being sure to do no less than 8 reps for each stage of the superset.

Exercise 4: Rope Cable Pushdowns

Returning to the high cable pulley, you will now select the rope attachment. You will be using form almost identical to how you performed the earlier pushdown exercise, except now you will take advantage of the flexibility of the rope to allow you to exaggerate the contraction. You will perform 3 sets of no less than 12 reps pausing briefly at the bottom of each rep and then holding a static pause for a count of 20 in the fully contacted position of the final rep of each of the three sets. Your triceps will throb and your whole body will quiver as the striations in your triceps become lacerations.

If you want to manhandle mythical weights and stretch the sleeve of even the biggest of tees, than you need titanic triceps-pulsating, rugged, three-headed monsters hungry to devour even the most daunting of loads. No Animal can be without them in this jungle that we call life... it is survival of the fittest and only the strongest will endure. Will you feast on the fruits of your hunt or are you dinner for a hungrier beast? The choice is yours.

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