Leg Exercises

Level Up Your Calves

Hammer your calves with heavy-ass weight to grow this stubborn body part.

Seated Calf Raise
Edgar Artiga
Edgar Artiga
Exercises 4
Equipment Yes

For years, a lightweight, high-volume barrage has been considered the right formula for big calves. And considering that the calves—made up of the gastrocnemius and soleus—are worked every time you take a step, walk up the stairs, or stand on your tiptoes, it makes sense that they would need a lot of volume for them to respond and grow.

This straight up calf workout that we published four years ago follows that very dogma, with reps reaching well beyond 15. But to keep your muscles guessing, and for the sake of changing it up, we reworked this routine. The exercises don’t change much. Instead, this workout will have you lifting heavy weight, a stimulus your calves probably aren’t used to, in the 6- to 10-rep range. Form is still a priority. Make sure you achieve a full range of motion on every rep and also make sure you hold the contraction at the top. If you’ve been following the high-reps-on-calves dogma for years, this heavier, lower-rep workout should serve as some nice shock treatment for a muscle group that certainly needs it to grow.

Straight Up Calves Old Routine, as published in the March 2013 issue of M&F

Exercise 1

Seated Calf Raise You'll need: Bench How to
Seated Calf Raise thumbnail
3 sets
10-15 reps
60 sec rest

Exercise 2

Standing Calf Raise You'll need: Box How to
Standing Calf Raise thumbnail
3 sets
30* reps
60 sec rest
*Incorporating dropsets to reach 30 reps per set.

Exercise 3

Leg Press Calf Raise
leg press calf raise thumbnail
3 sets
15-20 reps
60 sec rest
Use 3 different foot positions.

Exercise 4

Donkey Calf Raise You'll need: Box How to
Donkey Calf Raise thumbnail
-- sets
50 reps
60 sec rest

Level Up Calves New Routine

Exercise Warmup 1

Jump Rope You'll need: Jump Rope How to
Jump Rope thumbnail
3 sets
30 sec reps
-- rest

Exercise Warmup 2

High Box Jump You'll need: Box How to
High Box Jump thumbnail
3 sets
5 reps
30 sec rest

Exercise 3

Leg Press Calf Raise
leg press calf raise thumbnail
4 sets
6-8 reps
60 sec rest

Exercise 4

Seated Calf Raise You'll need: Bench How to
Seated Calf Raise thumbnail
4 sets
6-8 reps
60 sec rest

Exercise 5

Standing Calf Raise You'll need: Box How to
Standing Calf Raise thumbnail
3 sets
10,8,8 reps
60 sec rest
Perform the first set with your toes pointed straight ahead, the second set with your toes pointed outward, and the third set with your toes pointed inward.
Comments