One of the issues that you will run into from time to time is shoulder overuse injuries. It is just part of weight training and comes with the territory. When this happens I than start combining my chest and shoulder days so that I am only doing pressing movements once a week so I have plenty of time to recover. So now we have a separate arm day since we are doing chest/shoulders together and we do rear delts and trap work with our back day. It is already paying off as for this workout I was able to hit some all time best. So if you feel yourself having some nagging shoulder pain or your strength is dropping down some than it may mean you just need to combine the days to give the body more time to recover.
1. Incline Barbell Press, these were feeling really good so worked up in sets of 10 to 315, than did 5 at 365 and got 1 rep at 405 for the first time in years.
2. Smith Machine Flat press with bands, we put the bands on and only had a plate and a 25 for actual bar weight and this gave a really good feel to the chest. we used band tension so that we could minimize stress on the shoulders. 4×10
3. Slight Decline DB Fly, 4×10-12 – for these we stuck to plates on the ground and put the end of the bench on that. When doing decline movements you do not need to use the decline situp bench to create a huge decline angle, all you need is a couple degrees of change in angle to emphasize this angle while your still able to keep your feet on the ground.
1. Smith Machine Shoulder Press: 4×8-10 up to 275. This is where we still could feel the shoulders being tired where the incline barbell presses felt really good but the muscle endurance is still lagging some.
2. Upright Barbell Row 3×10-12 with 155
3. DB Side Raise Giant Set or extended set. This is a drop set but going in reverse order so start lighter and go heavier. Did 2 sets of 15 reps, 10 reps than 8 reps. On the 2nd set increased each weight by 5 pounds for those sets.
Again, when the shoulders feel like they are not recovering like they should it usually means you are a little over trained so that is when we combine chest and shoulders so can have more recovery time from pressing. We will do this for about a month and than go back to a chest and a shoulder day
Today I ended up with an odd schedule between clients and consultations for new people that limited my time to train so when this happens than I just get it done first thing in the morning. Normally I do fasted cardio most mornings of the week at home so I’m usually already up.
The focus on this workout was to work up to a weight and to perform 3 sets at that same weight vs going progressively heavier each working set.
Exercise 1: lateral machine raises, 3×10-12 with the stack which was 190 lbs
Exercise 2: Hammer Strength Seated Shoulder Press 3×6-8 with 3 plates and a 25 on each side.
Exercise 3: Standing DB Shrug 3×15 with 125s (for shrugs I am not a big believer in loading up the weight and going heavy with these, focus more on the contraction with this muscle group – it not a big muscle so no sense in going extremely heavy
Exercise 4: Kettle bell reverse Flys on the incline bench. I started using kettle bells for this movement over DBs because the Kettlebell is smaller therefor I can actually get a better range of motion than with a DB when maneuvering it around the bench. 4×12 with 30 lb kettlebell
Exercise 5: Incline DB Curl 3×8 with 40 lb DBs, again not super heavy but focus on the contraction
Exercise 6: Cable Barbell Curls, This one i did different rep pattern and went up progressively in weight up to only 90 pounds which isn’t a whole lot but the trick here is focus. When I do these I keep my eyes shut and I did 10 reps with a 3 sec negative and a good squeeze on the contraction and than did 3 fast reps at the end of each set. This creates a lot of blood flow and by closing your eyes you really engage the bicep with the movement creating more blood flow. 3 sets of 10 negatives and 3 fast reps (13 total)
This training session was a basic heavy shoulder training session. Some days you just feel good and this was one of those days.
Exercise 1: Seated Barbell Shoulder Press. This movement we worked in progressions warming up with 135 and starting working sets at 225 for 10, 275 for 6 and 315 for 2×3. The last set of 3 we went from 315 to 225 for as many reps as possible.
Exercise 2: Upright Barbell Row: 4×8 with final set being a drop set. worked up to 275 and the drop set went 275-185.
Exercise 3: Seated DB Side Raise 4×10 working up to 60s
Exercise 4: Rear Delt Machine 4×12-15
Exercise 5: Preacher Curl Hammer Strength 4×8-10 with 3 sec negative working up to 2 plates and a 25
Exercise 6: Barbell Reverse Curl (65 lbs) 4×12 superset with Alternating DB Hammer Curls 4×10 each arm (40s)
Training with bands for shoulders, this is a great way to accommodate resistance through band tension and still develop the muscle. I like to use bands when I am a little fatigued and if my joints hurt some and need to decrease the bar load but want to still push it through band tension. You will see there are several different bands that I use that provide different poundages of band tension through the range of motion.
Exercise 1: Lateral Raise Machine with bands. I used a red light tension band but wrapped it 4 times around to increase the resistance. When using bands control the weight as much as you can to keep constant tension on the muscle. 4×12 Video Reference
Exercise 2: Smith machine presses with bands: On this movement I used white bands that are double wrapped that provide about a 150 pounds of tension through the top of the movement. 4×8 Video Reference
Exercise 3: Upright Barbell Row on smith machine with bands. I have Dumbbells sitting on the floor and that is what I attach the bands to. Part of band selection has to do with the range of motion of the movement. I may use a lighter tension band and wrap it several times to increase resistance vs using a heavier band that just won’t stretch the complete range of motion. 4×10 Video Reference
Exercise 4: Rear delt machine (normal) 4×12 superset with reverse band flies 4×12. These are great to do as a part of a superset when the rear delts have already been exhausted to finish them off. Video Reference
This was the shoulder portion of this workout: I also trained biceps and calves today to.
Seated Hercules Cable Curls 4×8-10
Concentration DB Curl 4×10
Hammer Strength Preacher curl: 4×10-12
Seated Calf Machine 5×12
Donkey Calf Raise on smith machine 4×15
This is a basic strength training strength/ mass training for delts. The lifts are basic and the goal is to do more mass builder movements vs. small detail movements that we would do more close to a show.
Exercise 1: Barbell shoulder press 4×3-5 reps with final set turning into a drop set. I worked up to 275 pounds on this movement and then on the last set dropped it down to 225 for as many reps as i could get and i got 10 after doing 3 with 275. Video Reference
Exercise 2: Upright Row, 4×8. The key is to go as heavy as you can but you still want to maintain full range of motion, so if you are only getting up to your nipple level then it is too heavy and you need to go a little lighter so you can get the bar up high with elbows up high. Video Reference
Exercise 3: Seated DB side raises 4×8. This is one of my favorite mass builder movements for the shoulders because it just hits everything because I’m turning this into more of a power movement vs. a detail movement with strict form. So get a little bit of forward lean and use that momentum to help bring the weight up as your chest comes up. You will feel this through the delts and traps and again it is just a good move in general for overall shoulder mass when you are trying to grow in the off season or just grow in general. Video Reference
Exercise 4: Incline rear delt flies 4×10. This is did not video but the key is to hold the dumbbells end to end and then raise them up directly out to the side with your elbows going straight up and not backwards. You’re trying to feel your rear delt here, if you are doing it wrong you will be feeling your mid back.
Then after this I went into bicep training. I did not film, but i did the following:
Incline DB Curls 4×8
Barbell Curls with strict negative 4×8
Single Arm Preacher Curls on the Hammer Strength preacher machine 3×10
Barbell Clean and Press 4×6
Seated DB Shoulder Press 4×6-8
Standing DB Side Raise 4×10
Upright Barbell Row 3×10
Standing DB Front Raise 3×10 (alternate arms)
Barbell Shrugs 3×15
Reverse Fly on chest fly machine 3×15
Standing DB Side Raise 4×12-15
Seated DB Shoulder Press 4×6-8
Upright Barbell Row 4×8-10
DB Front Raise 4×10-12
Preacher Curl 4×10-12
Incline DB Curl 4×8-10
Concentration Curls 3×10-12
Seated DB Shoulder Press
Standing Push Press 4×5
Standing Barbell Front Raise 4×8
DB Side Raise 4×8-10
Rear Delt Fly chest down on incline bench 4×10-12
DB Side Raise 4×12
DB Side Raise Drop set 2×40 (lower weight every 10 reps)
Seated DB Shoulder Press 4×12 superset with barbell upright row 4×10
DB Front Raise 4×12
DB Shrug 4×15 superset with Bent-over rear delt flys 4×12-15
Reverse Fly on Pec Dec machine 5×15 (30 seconds between sets)
Standing Side Raise 4×10 (double rep on contraction)
Seated DB Shoulder Press 4×8 superset with barbell upright row 4×10
DB Front Raise 3×10 superset with rear delt fly w/chest down on incline bench 3×12-15
DB Shrugs 3×10-12 superset with Reverse Fly on chest Fly machine 3×12-15
Seated DB Side Raise 3×10