Do you want to look bigger? Well, there are 3 muscles that you should be focusing on to unlock the illusion that you are stronger than you actually are. Find out more below.
For someone to change their appearance from a skinny person to someone strong and big, it can take a while – sometimes a lifetime. However, you don’t need to train every single part of your body to transform your aesthetics to someone who looks buffed and that goes to the gym regularly
The quest for a visually impressive physique goes beyond sheer muscle size and fat loss. It’s about creating the illusion of a more substantial, more defined physique. In this article, we will delve into the science behind three key “show muscles” that, when developed strategically, can make you appear twice as jacked.
The information you will see below was derived from a video uploaded by Alain Gonzalez in his YouTube channel.
Coach Alain Gonzalez is an author, personal trainer and YouTuber with over 800K subscribers. He often uploads videos of fitness workouts, tips, training tricks and more, all related to making the most out of your time when working out.
Let’s explore the optimal ways to train these muscles for a quicker transformation.
3 “Show” Muscles that Make You Look bigger FAST
As mentioned, there are three key “show” muscles that you can focus on more than the others to give that illusion that you are bigger and stronger. Let’s talk about each of them and how to train them correctly.
Show Muscle #1: Arms – Balancing Biceps and Triceps
When it comes to creating a visual impact, arms take centre stage. A survey among women revealed that arms top the list of the most attractive muscles, surpassing abs, chest, and even the coveted V-cut. However, it’s essential to understand that the triceps contribute significantly to upper arm mass, making them equally crucial in the quest for bigger arms.
Training Biceps: The biceps consist of two heads—the short head (closer to the body) and the long head (further away). While the short head is emphasized in traditional biceps exercises, neglecting the long head can hinder overall biceps development. The incline dumbbell curl, with the arm positioned behind the torso, targets the long head effectively, ensuring a well-rounded and visually impressive biceps peak.
Training Triceps: The triceps, with three heads, often suffer from neglect, particularly the long head, which crosses over the shoulder joint. To emphasize the long head, incorporate triceps exercises with the arms overhead, such as skull crushers and French presses. Standing overhead variations with a cable provide an excellent way to target the long head, ensuring balanced triceps development.
Show Muscle #2: Shoulders – Creating a 3D Look
Shoulders play a crucial role in creating a wide and masculine appearance, even contributing to the illusion of a smaller waist. To achieve well-rounded shoulder development, it’s essential to understand the functions of the three deltoid heads—anterior (front), lateral (mid), and posterior (rear).
Training Mid Deltoids: While heavy compound lifts target the front and rear deltoids, the mid delts often require direct isolation. Traditional lateral raises, while effective, may not fully engage the lateral deltoid throughout the range of motion. Introducing cable lateral raises, performed at a slight lean, ensures constant tension on the lateral deltoid, maximizing its activation and promoting overall shoulder development.
Balanced Training for Anterior and Posterior Deltoids: Front deltoids are heavily involved in primary pushing movements, making additional isolation exercises unnecessary. Similarly, rear deltoids are stimulated during pulling movements. Balancing the training volume for these muscle groups is crucial to avoid overtraining and promote optimal shoulder development.
Show Muscle #3: Chest – Upper Chest Emphasis
A well-developed chest is a symbol of masculinity and aesthetics. The chest comprises the lower sternal head, targeted by horizontal pushing exercises, and the upper clavicular head, which benefits from incline presses.
Training Upper Chest: While the bench press is an excellent overall chest builder, focusing on the upper chest is often neglected. To maximize total chest development, incorporate incline pressing twice a week. Research suggests a 45-degree incline provides the highest activation in the clavicular head, emphasizing both horizontal adduction and shoulder flexion. Making incline presses a focal point of chest training ensures a more aesthetically pleasing and well-balanced chest.
In conclusion, it’s crucial to understand the science behind muscle development and leverage strategic training approaches. By emphasising show muscles—arms, shoulders, and chest—you can create the illusion of a larger, more aesthetic physique.
Balancing direct volume, targeting specific muscle heads, and incorporating scientifically backed exercises will contribute to a quicker and more noticeable transformation. Remember, it’s not just about gaining muscle; it’s about strategically building the right muscles to enhance your overall appearance.
Watch coach Alain Gonzalez’ video below for a more detailed explanation of these 3 show muscles that make you look bigger faster.
Here are some general guidelines for how often to work out based on your fitness goals:
- For general health and fitness: Aim to exercise most days of the week, for at least 30-60 minutes per day. This can include a combination of aerobic exercise, strength training, and flexibility exercises.
- For weight loss: Aim to exercise most days of the week, for at least 30-60 minutes per day. This should include a combination of aerobic exercise and strength training, with a focus on creating a calorie deficit through a combination of exercise and diet.
- For muscle building: Aim to do strength training exercises at least two days per week, targeting all major muscle groups. You can also include aerobic exercise and flexibility exercises as part of your routine.
- For athletic performance: The frequency and intensity of your workouts will depend on your specific sport and fitness goals. Consult with a coach or trainer to develop a customized training plan.
Remember, it’s important to listen to your body and avoid overtraining, which can lead to injury or burnout. Start slowly and gradually increase the frequency and intensity of your workouts over time.
Progressive overload is a fundamental principle in exercise science that forms the backbone of effective training programs. It revolves around the idea of gradually increasing the demands placed on the body to elicit continuous improvements in strength, endurance, and overall fitness. This systematic escalation of intensity can be achieved by progressively increasing the amount of weight lifted, the number of repetitions performed, or the overall volume of the workout over time. By consistently challenging the body in this manner, individuals can stimulate muscle adaptation and growth, preventing plateaus in performance.
The concept of progressive overload is closely linked to the body’s ability to adapt to stress. As the body encounters increased resistance during workouts, it responds by becoming stronger and more resilient. This adaptation involves the recruitment of additional muscle fibres, improvements in neuromuscular coordination, and enhanced energy system efficiency. Over time, what was initially challenging becomes the new baseline, necessitating further progression to sustain growth and development. This principle is applicable to various forms of exercise, from weightlifting and resistance training to cardiovascular activities, ensuring that individuals continue to experience positive physiological adaptations with ongoing commitment to their fitness journey.
Implementing progressive overload requires a balanced approach, considering individual fitness levels, proper technique, and recovery. It is not solely about pushing to the absolute limits in every session but rather about strategic and sustainable advancement. A well-designed training program incorporates periods of intensity progression interspersed with adequate recovery to optimize performance gains while minimizing the risk of overtraining or injury. Ultimately, progressive overload is a dynamic and personalized strategy that empowers individuals to consistently enhance their physical capabilities and achieve long-term fitness goals.
Some key benefits of doing strength training are:
- Builds muscle: Strength training is an effective way to build and maintain muscle mass. This can help increase your metabolism, which can help you burn more calories throughout the day.
- Increases strength and endurance: By challenging your muscles with resistance exercises, you can increase your strength and endurance, which can make it easier to perform daily tasks and activities.
- Reduces the risk of injury: Strong muscles and joints are less likely to be injured during physical activity, which can help reduce your risk of injury and improve your overall physical performance.
- Improves bone density: Strength training has been shown to increase bone density, which can help reduce the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
- Enhances overall physical performance: Strength training can improve your overall physical performance, whether you’re an athlete looking to improve your performance in a specific sport, or just looking to perform daily tasks with more ease.
- Boosts confidence and self-esteem: As you see progress and improvements in your strength and physical abilities, it can boost your confidence and self-esteem.
- Improves quality of life: Strength training can improve your overall quality of life by making it easier to perform daily tasks, reducing the risk of injury, and improving your overall physical health and well-being.
Overall, incorporating strength training into your fitness routine can have numerous benefits for your physical and mental health, and can help you live a happier, healthier, and more active lifestyle.