Total Shoulder Annihilation

8 Nov

I’ve been contemplating what to write about in my first official post for a few days now.  There are so many things I want to touch on and I feel as though this first post will somehow define me and the general feel of posts to come.  Geez, that seems like a lot of pressure for a blog, doesn’t it?

In the end, I’ve decided to go with something safe.  Something tried, tested, and true.  Something I know and love: working out!

For my next show I’ve decided to do all the training on my own.  Well, “decided” may not be the most accurate word.  I’d love to have a personal trainer again, but I just can’t afford it.  THAT’S OK!  Because you know what?  I’m a trainer!  I’ve done two shows now, I’m pretty confident in my ability to put together decent workouts, and I have Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Bodybuilding Encyclopedia on my side 😀

One of the judges’ critiques from my last show was that I need to put some mass on my shoulders.  I have a natural hourglass figure (good news for an aspiring Figure competitor!), but my bottom half is still disproportionately bigger than my upper half – a problem that can be resolved by conditioning my legs and leaning out more, and building up my shoulders and back.

So this week and last I’ve been hitting my shoulders HARD!  Like a chia pet, I want those suckers to GROW!!

I’ve designed my workout to hit all three heads of my deltoids (front, side, and rear), with a bit more emphasis on the side delts (the idea here is to create a “V” shape in the torso, with a big back and shoulders and a small waist.  The bigger your side delts, the bigger the V!)

See, nice big shoulders = nice big "V"

I’ve got a good mix of compound movements and isolation movements in order to stimulate the muscle in as many ways possible.  Finally, I designed the workout to have a lot of supersets and trisets (doing exercises one after another with no rest), again, in an effort to shock the muscle and stimulate growth.  Here’s what I’ve been doing:


Superset 1: 4 sets each

Standing Barbell Press (alternate in front and behind the head) – 12 reps

Dumbbell Lateral Raise – 10 reps + Burns to failure on the last rep (after you do your lateral raises, hold the dumbbells straight out beside you, arms parallel to the floor, for as long as possible)

Superset 2: 3 sets each

Upright Row – 12 reps

Cable Rotation (to the inside) – 10 reps

Triset 3: 4 sets each

Front Barbell Raise – 12 reps

Bent-Over Dumbbell Rear Delt Fly – 12 reps

Shrugs – to failure

Burnout Set: 2 sets

Alternating Front and Lateral Dumbbell Raises – to failure

Arnie Press – to failure


Can I just say that by the last set of Arnie Presses I could barely manage to lift 7.5lbs?  I’d say that’s pretty pitiful except that it means that I worked my butt off, so it’s actually pretty HARDCORE!  Yup, I can already feel them getting stiff and won’t be at all surprised if I’m not able to lift my hands high enough to wash my hair tomorrow…. Awesome 😀

– Tess


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