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Crafted Calf Workout:

February 25, 2013 | 0 Comments
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This workout is a super high volume calf workout that is designed to turn your calves into cows and leave you hobbling around for days…

Please remember that with ALL calf exercises, range of motion is VITAL! So make sure that you are stretching your calves at the bottom of each and every rep, pausing to allow your Achilles tendon to relax, and then exploding right up onto your tip toes for a powerful squeeze.

Exercise 1: Seated Isolateral Calf Raises

“Seated calf raises first?!” you say… Yep, seated calf raises first! Most athletes always do them last, but I like to flip things up and do them first. Not only does this serve as a pre-fatigue for your soleus (the largest of the 2 calf muscles), but it allows you to go quite heavy and really hit those deep soleus muscle fibres. I also do these isolaterally, meaning one leg at a time. This will allow you to really focus on your form, and then use your non-working leg to force out reps on your final sets.

Set 1: Warm up set with light weight for 20 reps

Set 2: Warm up set with heavier weight for 20 Reps

Set 3: First working set. Use enough weight to cause failure between 8 – 10 reps

Set 4: Second working set. Increase weight to cause failure between 6 – 8 reps

Set 5: Third working set. Keep weight from set 4 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then use your non-working leg to help you force out another 6 reps with good form (forced reps)

Set 6: Fifth working set. Keep weight from set 4 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then drop to half the weight for another 12 reps, then lock the safety in and do top-half partials for another 20 reps (drop set to partials)

*Rest 1 minute in between sets*

Exercise 2: Standing Calf Raises

If your gym doesn’t have a standing calf machine, try this: head to the smith machine and use 20kg plates stacked on top of each other as steps underneath your feet. If your gym doesn’t have a smith machine, join a different gym.

Set 1: Warm up set with light weight for 20 reps

Set 2: First working set. Use enough weight to cause failure between 8 – 10 reps

Set 3: Second working set. Increase weight to cause failure between 6 – 8 reps

Set 4: Third working set. Keep weight from set 3 and fail between 6 – 8 reps

Set 5: Fourth working set. Keep weight from set 3 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then rest for a count of 5, then try for another 2 – 4 reps (rest-pause set)

Set 6: Fifth working set. Keep weight from set 3 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then drop to half the weight for another 12 reps, then drop to half the weight again for another 20 reps (double drop set)

*Rest 1 minute in between sets*

Exercise 3: Leg Press Calf Raises

Make sure your legs are as straight as possible without locking out your knees. Once again, ensure that you are stretching your calves at the bottom of each and every rep, pausing to allow your Achilles tendon to relax, and then exploding right up onto your tip toes for a powerful squeeze.

Set 1: Warm up set with light weight for 20 reps

Set 2: First working set. Use enough weight to cause failure between 8 – 10 reps

Set 3: Second working set. Increase weight to cause failure between 6 – 8 reps

Set 4: Third working set. Keep weight from set 3 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then rest for a count of 5, then try for another 2 – 4 reps (rest-pause set)

Set 5: Fourth working set. Keep weight from set 3 and fail between 6 – 8 reps, then drop to half the weight for another 12 reps (drop set)

*Rest 1 minute in between sets*

Exercise 4: Standing Calf Raises from the Floor

By this point of the workout, your calves will be completely hammered. If you have maintained good range of movement in all of the preceding exercises, you should struggle to contract your calves. So we are going to finish them off with some top half partial reps. Using the standing calf machine or smith machine, contract as hard as you possibly can from the ground up onto your tip toes.

Set 1: Warm up set with light weight for 20 reps

Set 2: First working set. Use the same weight that you used for your first set of standing calf raises in exercise 2. Do 50 reps. You can rest pause as many times as you need, but DO NOT take the weight off your shoulders.

Set 3: Repeat Set 2

*Rest 2-3 minutes in between sets*

Exercise 5: Leg Press Calf Burnouts

OK – we’re almost done… In exercise 5 we focused on completely fatiguing the top half of the range of movement, in particular completely exhausting the gastrocnemius (the smaller of the 2 calf muscles). With this last exercise we are going to completely fatigue the bottom half of the range of movement and crush the soleus.

To achieve this, you are going to need to put a slight bend in your knee; almost like you are doing seated calf raises upside down on the leg press. Now let your calves stretch to the bottom of each rep and explode up to the middle part of a typical rep.

Set 1: Warm up set with light weight for 20 reps

Set 2: First working set. Use the same weight that you used for your first set of leg press calf raises in exercise 3. Do 50 reps. You can rest pause as many times as you need, but DO NOT take rack the weight.

Set 3: Repeat Set 2

*Rest 2-3 minutes in between sets*

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