I made a post on Facebook a few weeks ago about dropping the weight on curls and focusing more on squeezing out every rep with as much tension as possible. Needless to say, I got a few messages asking if I was serious/was feeling OK/was cool with not being manly.
Everyone loves big biceps; they look good in t-shirts, they look good at the beach and you can make lots of references to “gun shows.” However if you’re the type of person worried about how much they’re curling, I’m going to guess that you either
- compete in bicep curl competitions
- don’t have big arms
The point of curls and other “glamour muscle” work like triceps, shoulders, calves, etc is that is assistance work IE not the main focus. Have you ever gone to a really nice steakhouse and been pissed off that the asparagus wasn’t seasoned properly? Have you ever gone to a concert and been annoyed that the opening band wore shitty outfits? Of course not!
Worrying about how much you’re curling is the same thing. You’re probably using too much weight, you’re probably using every muscle but your biceps and you’re wasting tons of time an energy that can be better spent elsewhere. This is what we call majoring in the minors.
Assistance exercises are meant to be lighter – I’ll be completely honest – I’m not even sure I could curl a pair of 30’s right now. However I can get a ridiculous pump using 15’s or 20’s and really focusing on the movement, ensuring my biceps are doing all of the work. Assistance work is there to keep your joints healthy, get a little extra volume to help you look like you actually lift and be something that you spend about 10 seconds worrying about.
Or you could keep trying to curl the 60’s and wonder why your elbows hurt and you’re not getting any results.