Step away from the bench – you’ll get more pec activation from moves that aren’t just about pressing. Switch your press-ups for “squeezers”. Start with your hands slightly more than shoulder-width apart and squeeze them together – they shouldn’t actually move inwards – on the way up. Do three max-reps sets, every other day.
“Unfortunately, the best biceps move is the least practical,” says strength coach Chad Waterbury. “If you can hang a rope up somewhere, do 10 climbs, two or three times a week, for all the stimulation you’ll ever need.” Not an option? Do neutral-grip pull-ups (palms facing in) or pull-downs using your gym’s double-D handle to give your guns similar stimulation.
Dips done properly – with your elbows tucked to your sides – might be the only triceps training you need, but once you hit the 30-rep mark, switch to the Russian variation. Drop into the bottom of the move, shift your weight backwards onto your forearms, then push forwards again and come back up. The (nasty) goal is 10 reps.
Forget wrist curls and work these muscles alongside everything else. Fat-grip training is the key –wrap a towel around the bar for pull-ups, rows and dumbbell curls.
No leg extension machine? No problem: do the natural version. Start on your knees with your upper body raised off the floor, then lean back slowly, using your quads to control your descent. You might need to use some momentum to get back to the top, but the goal is to ascend and descend without using your hands.
Don’t chase the weight on shoulder moves: your rotator cuffs will struggle to handle the stress. Instead, use light dumbbells and strive for perfect form – when you’re doing lat raises, for example, do one rep, then hold at the top for 10 seconds, two reps and 20, all the way up to four and 40. Rest for a minute, and repeat twice.
They won’t activate themselves. Before you squat, use the fire hydrant: get on all fours, then bring your knee up and out to your side, like a dog marking its territory. For more activation, straighten your leg – if your glutes start twitching, it’s working.