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Thread: Calves

  1. #1
    Registered User muscleshakes's Avatar
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    Calves

    Well I wast blessed big legs. That's ok I don't really want em but I always hit hard once a week bc I do want them to grow some if they can. What I have really wanted and love the looks of is a nice set of calves. Well I never really hit them like I should. People say its pretty much genetics etc. well I agree its the Hardest muscle to get to grow. So for the past 6 months I have been trying Everyhing I found something that works or worked some. I hit them hard 3 days a week. I hit every major muscle groups once a week but calves Sunday, Tuesday & Thursday. I do like 20 sets each time. I pick two excersises and do 10 sets of each to failure. My main ones have been donkey raises & leg press machine raises. I also built a wood block and use dumbbell in hand at home. Well my small but muscular 14 inch calves are not 15. Lol a lot of grueling workouts for one inch but I think it's good for a natural guy like me with bad leg genetics.
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  2. #2
    This too shall pass dazlittle's Avatar
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    I'm in the same camp as you, Never going to have big calves but I blast them twice a week and they are fairly well defined now.

    Good job gaining an inch.
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  3. #3
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    Props for bringing up a lagging bodypart. Based on your avi you've got a ways to go to get them proportional to your arms, but at least now you know what works for you.

    I did the same thing 20 years ago to bring up my lagging calves; hit them 3x per week with as much weight as I could handle.
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  4. #4
    Registered User muscleshakes's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by -=FLEX=- View Post
    Props for bringing up a lagging bodypart. Based on your avi you've got a ways to go to get them proportional to your arms, but at least now you know what works for you.

    I did the same thing 20 years ago to bring up my lagging calves; hit them 3x per week with as much weight as I could handle.
    thanks and yeah my arms are actually slightly over 16 1/2 inches but put down at 17 bc cant put half inches. Anyways I guess If I could have it one way than the other I would have the better arms and upper body but still Ive really really wanted to bring my calves up to 16s. I have smaller ankles and wrist, joints etc so it shouldnt take a ton of size to make them look good or at least not small. I will tell you one thing...and I work out in a gym with a lot of bodybuilders and big dudes. I work my calves as hard as anyone Ive seen at least while Im there. Just a little bit of growth made me feel good bc both my parents have small legs and calves and guys told me its all genetics. The 1 inch feels good. I want one more I dont know if I can get it but Im going to kill them for the next 6 months.
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  5. #5
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    One inch in six months is great progress for the calves, bro. Nice work. I've been prioritizing mine for the past 2 months by working them twice per week. The first day I have been doing a routine that was given to me by a member of another forum. It goes like this:

    Find a weight that will allow you to hit 15 reps that you normally do for calf raises. Dont stop until you hit the 20 rep mark. Rack the weight and count to 5. At that point, go again and knock out as many as possible. Make sure to keep track and dont stop until you get to 75 reps no matter how many times you have to stop and start back. Once you can hit that pretty easy, move it up to 100 reps. Make sure that each rep you are overexagerating the movement at the bottom and top to actually use the muscle and not the momentum. As a reference I use 45lbs x 100 reps for this. The pain that you will endure getting to 100 reps will be excruciating.
    The second exercise should be a straight-legged movement, I do standing calf raises, or calf raises in the leg press machine. I select a weight that allows me to barely get 5 sets of 10 reps. Once I can complete 5 sets of 10 I bump up the weight the following week.

    *The idea behind the routine above is to pre-exhaust the gastrocnemius during the first exercise so the soleous will accomplish the brunt of the work during the second exercise. Be prepared, the DOMS from the above routine is long and painful.

    My second calf day of the week is typically made up of calf raises in the leg press machine and donkey calf raises. 5 sets of each movement pyramiding up in weigh each consecutive set. My rep range is typically 15 - 8.
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  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by TouaregV8 View Post
    One inch in six months is great progress for the calves, bro. Nice work. I've been prioritizing mine for the past 2 months by working them twice per week. The first day I have been doing a routine that was given to me by a member of another forum. It goes like this:

    Find a weight that will allow you to hit 15 reps that you normally do for calf raises. Dont stop until you hit the 20 rep mark. Rack the weight and count to 5. At that point, go again and knock out as many as possible. Make sure to keep track and dont stop until you get to 75 reps no matter how many times you have to stop and start back. Once you can hit that pretty easy, move it up to 100 reps. Make sure that each rep you are overexagerating the movement at the bottom and top to actually use the muscle and not the momentum. As a reference I use 45lbs x 100 reps for this. The pain that you will endure getting to 100 reps will be excruciating.
    The second exercise should be a straight-legged movement, I do standing calf raises, or calf raises in the leg press machine. I select a weight that allows me to barely get 5 sets of 10 reps. Once I can complete 5 sets of 10 I bump up the weight the following week.

    *The idea behind the routine above is to pre-exhaust the gastrocnemius during the first exercise so the soleous will accomplish the brunt of the work during the second exercise. Be prepared, the DOMS from the above routine is long and painful.

    My second calf day of the week is typically made up of calf raises in the leg press machine and donkey calf raises. 5 sets of each movement pyramiding up in weigh each consecutive set. My rep range is typically 15 - 8.
    cool thx for that. I sometimes do drop sets on donkey machine and seated raises. I will just keep going untill I cant lift the weight....usually only like 30-40 reps though....thats after killing them set after set. Man my calves feel like they are going to I dont know do something. just burns and aches so bad I have to massage them with my hands. I think people at my gym look at me like Im nuts when Im training my 15 inch calves but hey Im trying to beat genetics and to see some change made me feel good. I will try what you posted think I saw something simular on youtube.
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  8. #8
    Meathead drudixon's Avatar
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    Calves bigger than arms feelsbadcrew checking in... I find walking does more for my calves than anything else.
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  9. #9
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    Great job! I have added about half an inch to my utterly pathetic calf muscles in about 4 months. Now hitting them 4x a week, quads and hams 3x a week.

    more than half of my training time is spent on legs, yet I look like I never train them, its very frustrating! I can make them stronger but never bigger, so I am switching to a high volume isolation routine for a while, and (shudder) dropping squats for 2 whole months.
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    maintain until October scullin's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by drudixon View Post
    Calves bigger than arms feelsbadcrew checking in... I find walking does more for my calves than anything else.
    Calves and arms equal size master race as they say. lol No calves were directly worked out that decade.

    Walking, stairs, jumping rope, and running along with the usual squats and deadlifts seem to be the most effective for me. I used to work them directly back in the day but looking back it was a waste of time because they grew just as well with no direct work.
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    Originally Posted by scullin View Post
    I used to work them directly back in the day but looking back it was a waste of time because they grew just as well with no direct work.
    This is how I'm starting to feel, scullin. Mine were 17" over two months ago before I started working them twice per week. I just measured them again last week and wouldn't ya know it, still 17", WTF?!?!?
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    Originally Posted by drudixon View Post
    Calves bigger than arms feelsbadcrew checking in... I find walking does more for my calves than anything else.
    Arms 2" bigger than calves crew checking in. Feelsbadtoo. I've tried everything... no direct work and direct work 3 x per week. Cursed.
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  13. #13
    maintain until October scullin's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by TouaregV8 View Post
    This is how I'm starting to feel, scullin. Mine were 17" over two months ago before I started working them twice per week. I just measured them again last week and wouldn't ya know it, still 17", WTF?!?!?
    Same as mine except my arms are 17" too so it's in proportion. I'm guessing you're arms are way bigger.
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  14. #14
    Registered User TouaregV8's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by scullin View Post
    I'm guessing you're arms are way bigger.
    Arms:calves ratio +2.5" and growing. : (
    Last edited by TouaregV8; 06-03-2013 at 01:59 PM.
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    I get DOMS really easily in my calves, but not much progress. Think I'll try something different: more frequent training, even if the extra session is just single leg bodyweight stuff. May as well try it.
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  16. #16
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    Crappy calves checking in here! Although I have managed to add a paltry half an inch in the last couple of months.
    I've decided to up my calves too to try and bring them up.
    Inspired to work harder....
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  17. #17
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    Calves and arms pretty much equally pathetic for me. I've been working really hard at it and I think I have managed to put on 1/4 inch to each in the past year. Feels bad. But not as bad as nothing at all. And I have evened my calves out.


    Originally Posted by TouaregV8 View Post
    One inch in six months is great progress for the calves, bro. Nice work. I've been prioritizing mine for the past 2 months by working them twice per week. The first day I have been doing a routine that was given to me by a member of another forum. It goes like this:

    Find a weight that will allow you to hit 15 reps that you normally do for calf raises. Dont stop until you hit the 20 rep mark. Rack the weight and count to 5. At that point, go again and knock out as many as possible. Make sure to keep track and dont stop until you get to 75 reps no matter how many times you have to stop and start back. Once you can hit that pretty easy, move it up to 100 reps. Make sure that each rep you are overexagerating the movement at the bottom and top to actually use the muscle and not the momentum. As a reference I use 45lbs x 100 reps for this. The pain that you will endure getting to 100 reps will be excruciating.
    The second exercise should be a straight-legged movement, I do standing calf raises, or calf raises in the leg press machine. I select a weight that allows me to barely get 5 sets of 10 reps. Once I can complete 5 sets of 10 I bump up the weight the following week.

    *The idea behind the routine above is to pre-exhaust the gastrocnemius during the first exercise so the soleous will accomplish the brunt of the work during the second exercise. Be prepared, the DOMS from the above routine is long and painful.

    My second calf day of the week is typically made up of calf raises in the leg press machine and donkey calf raises. 5 sets of each movement pyramiding up in weigh each consecutive set. My rep range is typically 15 - 8.
    Sounds interesting - too bad I read this after my leg workout. Will try to remember this for next time - gets tough at my age....
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    Registered User TouaregV8's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DocHoss View Post
    Sounds interesting - too bad I read this after my leg workout. Will try to remember this for next time - gets tough at my age....
    Good, just wanted to give you fellas a different option on exercises.

    I think the biggest thing that I see in the gym pertaining to calves are the guys who perform seated calf raises, or any calf movement really, with 4 or 5 45lb plates stacked on it while doing half reps and bouncing the weight up and down. Lighten it up, slow it down, and perform a full range of motion.
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    Chasing the dragon JRT6's Avatar
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    Ask ID he's an expert on calves.
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    Originally Posted by JRT6 View Post
    Ask ID he's an expert on calves.
    Oh. SNAP.
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  21. #21
    Canadian in Korea Juggertha's Avatar
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    My arms are 2" bigger than my calves as well... I've got 'dem long distance runners legs. Now, if only I could run long distances. lol
    I don't lift weights, I flex under duress.

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  22. #22
    Trying to get those Leans AC242's Avatar
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    I know I'll never have big calves but I run and hit then directly once a week. They are defined and lag behind arms a bit, but I'll live.
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    Registered User muscleshakes's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by AC242 View Post
    I know I'll never have big calves but I run and hit then directly once a week. They are defined and lag behind arms a bit, but I'll live.
    I did once a week for ever but it didnt work. SOOO...6 months ago I just said I dont care how bad it hurts Im going to kill them as long as they are not sore. So I hit them 3 days per week every week. I usually do 20 sets. I try to confuse em I will go heavy for 12 reps but sometimes just drop set and boom burn out 30 reps and WOW they burn and hurt so bad. It feels like nothing else all the way down to the bone. I love training my calves now. I just train them in between whatever body part it is that Im training that day. Im going to keep killing them for the rest of this year and on and on.
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  24. #24
    Registered User muscleshakes's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Richie71 View Post
    I get DOMS really easily in my calves, but not much progress. Think I'll try something different: more frequent training, even if the extra session is just single leg bodyweight stuff. May as well try it.
    if you start hitting them every other day that will most likely change no matter how bad your calf genetics are. Mine sucked they still are small but at least look a little better. I like to go heavy for 10-12 reps on a lot of sets. But also do at least 5-6 sets of about half the weight and just pump out like 30-40 reps. It burns so damn bad feel like the worse cramp ever but hopefully in the end it will pay off. My goal is to have 16 inch calves so they will be closer to my arms.
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  25. #25
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    Talking

    Originally Posted by muscleshakes View Post
    if you start hitting them every other day that will most likely change no matter how bad your calf genetics are. Mine sucked they still are small but at least look a little better. I like to go heavy for 10-12 reps on a lot of sets. But also do at least 5-6 sets of about half the weight and just pump out like 30-40 reps. It burns so damn bad feel like the worse cramp ever but hopefully in the end it will pay off. My goal is to have 16 inch calves so they will be closer to my arms.
    I am not a believer in the genetic theory because mine were quoted as being "dinky". I studied the people with the large ones and realized many who dont train either walk on the balls of their feet, cycle or run on the balls of their feet.

    I incorporated that with high rep training over time and they grew.
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  26. #26
    Registered User muscleshakes's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by x-trainer ben View Post
    I am not a believer in the genetic theory because mine were quoted as being "dinky". I studied the people with the large ones and realized many who dont train either walk on the balls of their feet, cycle or run on the balls of their feet.

    I incorporated that with high rep training over time and they grew.
    I believe you bc I will never forget my middle school gym teacher dude had like 19 inch calves lol he was known for walking on his toes. Never lifted. I also believe that bc I started thinking about this over the winter I seem to walk on my heels much more than balls of feet. I kinda try to focus on the way I walk although sometimes I feel strange lol. I feel like I get a little minor pump just doing that.
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    Originally Posted by muscleshakes View Post
    I believe you bc I will never forget my middle school gym teacher dude had like 19 inch calves lol he was known for walking on his toes. Never lifted. I also believe that bc I started thinking about this over the winter I seem to walk on my heels much more than balls of feet. I kinda try to focus on the way I walk although sometimes I feel strange lol. I feel like I get a little minor pump just doing that.
    One of my best friends had this German girlfriend in college and we always talked about how thick, tight and solid her legs were with a focus on her calves. We realized she never let her heels drop. Needless to say she didn't lift
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  28. #28
    Cold day in hell frozensparky's Avatar
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    Arms and calves pretty damn close to the same size. I used to hit them once a week but changed it up this year. Now I hit them 3 times a week at the end of leg, back, and chest days 2 sets of 50 on the seated raise machine. Seems to have helped
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  29. #29
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    My arms and calves are both 16.5", but because of my height, the calves look much smaller. I need at least one more inch on the calves for them to look decent.
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  30. #30
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    Originally Posted by TJC85 View Post
    My arms and calves are both 16.5", but because of my height, the calves look much smaller. I need at least one more inch on the calves for them to look decent.
    How tall are you 6,5+? Bc 16.5 should look fine. 16 will be my goal but I'm 6 foot tall
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