In this guide, we’re diving into some simple, practical tips on how to build biceps at home as fast and easily as possible.
Do you find yourself scrolling Instagram and wishing you had the ripped biceps that you see on your favourite celebrities? The rise of superhero film franchises has seen an explosion of superhuman physiques emerge as the new #bodygoals.
Unfortunately, we can’t all afford a professional body trainer and most of us don’t have a working schedule that allows for 6 months’ intensive exercise programmes…or the motivation!
So, what can us mere mortals do to go from Steve Rodgers to Captain America?
The answer might not be as far from home as you think. With our guidance, top tips and advice, you can get big screen biceps on a small screen budget.
Three main secrets to faster, bigger arms
The key to achieving remarkable results rapidly is a combination of :
- High intensity interval training (HIIT)
- Targeted bicep exercises
- …and a good diet.
HITT workouts involve short spurts of high intensity exercise and are perfect for people who want to achieve maximum results with minimum time commitments. This kind of exercise is the perfect workout for bigger biceps in less time.
While you can sign up to HIIT classes in a gym or health club, there are plenty of online classes that you can do in the comfort of your own home at a time that suits you.
For some, this will be 15 minutes first thing on a morning. For others, it might be a pre-lunch sweat session. It doesn’t matter when you exercise, only that you stick to your regime.
Regularly engaging in high intensity exercise is the most efficient way to burn arm fat. Why are we talking about fat loss when we’re meant to be telling you how to get ripped biceps?
Because it doesn’t matter how big your muscles are if they’re wrapped in a layer of excess fat.
Difference between BIG and Strong Biceps
In terms of strengthening exercises targeted at your biceps, it’s important to understand the difference between size and strength.
Doing few reps of heavy weights builds bulk and can help achieve that big aesthetic that many of us covet. However, as we all know, bigger is not always better.
An appropriate focus on strength and conditioning builds definition and tone, as well as a practical physique that will be more enjoyable in day-to-day life. This involves doing a lot of reps at lower weights.
How do you get bigger arms at home?
For bulk building, you want a shorter range of motion, a higher weight and to actively engage your bicep all the way through. Bicep curls using free weights or resistance bands are very effective for this purpose.
It’s better to curl slow for faster biceps
Dumbbells are a great investment for bigger arms, especially full sets that give you space to push yourself on your good days. When performing a curl, the trick is to go slow.
You want an explosive bicep contraction on the up movement, then hold and squeeze at the top. If you’re focusing on the aesthetic size goal, then then concentrate on the tight squeeze. This promotes muscle growth and gives you that pumped sensation.
Then initiate a slow and controlled downward movement. This will give you a full range of motion and stop your biceps from feeling too tight.
Do body weight exercises give you bigger biceps?
You can also do bodyweight exercises to increase your bicep strength. Pull-ups are good, but difficult to begin with. If you’re struggling to do a rep, an invert-row using a pull-up bar is an easier place to begin.
Alternatively, you can use resistance bands to assist you. Using multiple bands at once and reducing them as you become stronger and master the technique is a bit like using training wheels on a bike.
Some people don’t recommend using resistance bands because they can stall progress, but this only happens if you don’t try to wean yourself off them.
Build bicep muscle more efficiently: Keep a workout diary
Dips don’t strictly come under the heading of bicep training, as they target your triceps, but they’re still an important and easy bodyweight move that you should be incorporating into your routine.
Do push-ups give you bigger biceps?
A little! Push-ups are a great upper and core body exercise, but there are better exercises to do if you’re looking to increase your biceps size fast.
While push-ups have some training benefits for your upper arms, they’re more beneficial for your triceps and shoulders.
Strengthening these muscles groups allow you to do more repetitions of bicep exercises because of the way they interact with each other and will help to ensure that your arm remains proportionate as you grow.
All of these exercises, including HIIT workouts, can be found quickly online. YouTube is a great resource for instructional videos that will help you learn how to perform moves safely and effectively, as well as for guided exercise sessions.
If you’re looking to build your biceps quicker at home, Youtube is absolutely packed with workouts you can try.
It’s much cheaper than a personal trainer and way more convenient.
Tailor your regime
Whether you’re aiming for bigger arms in 2 weeks or 3 months, when designing a training programme, your aim shouldn’t be to build the biggest biceps as possible. You need to set measured goals that are appropriate to your body type.
As already mentioned, there’s a difference between size and strength in your biceps and you need to aim for a balance that complements your frame.
In addition to bone structure, you need to consider the size of you other muscles and make sure that everything is in alignment. Look at the width of your shoulders as this brings out the biceps and needs to be proportional.
Don’t neglect other muscle groups!
For the same reason, consider your trunk and how muscular arms will look alongside it. Finally, don’t forget about your legs! Yes, this is a guide on how to grow your biceps but don’t forget your other muscle groups too. Guys who concentrate their bodybuilding on their upper body while neglecting their lower half do themselves a disservice. Johnny Bravo style isn’t a good look.
Nutrition: essential for bigger arms in less time
Great bicep muscles aren’t made in the gym, they’re made in the kitchen.
Without proper nutrition your physical efforts won’t transform into visible results. Your biceps, and the rest of your body, need adequate supplies of protein to build muscle mass and it needs it from the right sources.
Lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, and yogurt should be featuring heavily in your diet. For vegetarians and vegans looking to increase arm size quicker, you can get protein from meat replacement products, such as Quorn, but be sure to check the nutritional label before eating.
Do protein shakes help build bicep muscles faster?
Protein shakes and snack bars can be an easy way to quickly down some protein, however, these are often combined with high quantities of sugar or chemical flavourings which negate their nutritional benefits.
It’s often tastier and cheaper to eat a proper meal or pre-prepare some snacks. If you’re ever stuck, a pint of milk contains over 15g of protein and is available pretty much everywhere.
Foods to avoid for quick bicep gains
The biceps are no different to any other muscle you’re trying to build in that you should limit your carbohydrate and fat consumption, as foods rich in these macro-nutrients are higher in calories and easy to overeat.
Don’t entirely cut them out of your diet because they’re still an important source of energy…not to mention delicious. A good rule of thumb is to have carbs and fat with lunch or dinner, then have a low carb low fat meal for the other.
Breakfast should be balanced. For example, eggs and wholemeal toast.
Final thoughts on growing those biceps fast at home
Following this guidance is a sure-fire way to get started on your journey to achieving your superhero body goals, and having bigger guns in less time. And saying goodbye to skinny arms for good.
Consistency is key and you need to be dedicated to your training, but you can expect to see you hard work start to pay off within a few weeks.
There’s nothing more motivating than people seeing those biceps and being asked if you’ve been working out. So be sure to invest in some new short sleave t-shirts (go a size down for maximum effect). You’ll be needing them!
References & Further Reading
- Check out our guide on Hex Dumbbells, if you’re looking for a new set to get started
- How often should you train your beceps? This guide offers advice on how to train without over doing it
- Washington Edu have a good free paper on the best way to train for size.
- There’s also a brilliant guide over on sci-fit.net which condenses many studies into one superb guide about training for strength and hypertrophy
- Built with science has an excellent case study on building bigger arms fast