Workout Routines

The workout plan to build your 'V' taper

Add some serious width to your shoulders—and make your waist look leaner—with these 3 workouts.

by
The workout plan to build your 'V' taper
Duration 45
Exercises 15
Equipment Yes

Suits have changed over the years, but they always strive to achieve one goal: make your shoulders look wider than your waist. The V-shape the lapels form is meant to accentuate the way a well-built man’s upper body tapers, projecting a virile look. Now, you could spend big money getting your suits custom-tailored to achieve this effect—or you could invest a few weeks building the muscles that fill 'em out. Here's how to do the latter.

How it works

The V-taper is mainly achieved by widening the lats and adding density to the shoulders, which you can do with chinup variations and lateral raises. But to maximize your look in a suit, you have to be aware of not only which muscles to build but also which to ease up on. Thick arms can throw off the fit of the suit, and big quads can cause the pant legs to bunch near the crotch. The answer isn’t to neglect these muscles but just not to isolate them—training them with lifts that work them in conjunction with other muscles leads to more balanced size gains. In short, you’ll let presses, chinups, and squats train the triceps, biceps, and legs while they offer residual benefits to your shoulders and back. 

Directions 

Perform each workout (Day I, II, and III) once per week, resting a day between each session. Exercises that are marked “A” and “B” are supersets.

How to do it: Complete one set for each in turn without rest in between. Afterward, rest as prescribed. Repeat until all the assigned sets are completed.

Day I Workout I

Exercise 1a.

Incline Dumbbell Press You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Incline Dumbbell Press thumbnail
4 sets
10 reps
-- rest

Exercise 1b.

Dip You'll need: Dip Station How to
Dips thumbnail
4 sets
10 reps
2 min. rest

Exercise 2a.

Inverted Row You'll need: Power Rack How to
Inverted row thumbnail
4 sets
10 reps
-- rest

Exercise 2b.

Suspended pushup You'll need: TRX How to
Suspended pushup thumbnail
4 sets
10 reps
90 sec. rest

Exercise 3.

Pullup You'll need: Pullup Bar How to
Exercise: How to do an Eccentric Pullup thumbnail
3 sets
As many as possible reps
As long as needed rest

Day II Workout II

Exercise 1a.

Chinup You'll need: Pullup Bar How to
Chinup thumbnail
4 sets
As many as possible reps
-- rest

Exercise 1b.

Seated dumbbell overhead press You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Seated dumbbell overhead press thumbnail
4 sets
12 reps
90 sec rest

Exercise 2a.

Dumbbell bentover row You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Dumbbell bentover row thumbnail
4 sets
12 reps
0 rest

Exercise 2b.

Seated dumbbell lateral raise You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Seated dumbbell lateral raise thumbnail
4 sets
12 reps
60 sec. rest

Exercise 3.

One-arm dumbbell snatch You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Cross-body clean and press thumbnail
6 sets
6 each arm reps
2 min. rest

Day III Workout III

Exercise 1a.

Front Squat You'll need: Barbell How to
Front Squat thumbnail
5 sets
6 reps
-- rest

Exercise 1b.

Vertical jump How to
Vertical jump thumbnail
5 sets
10 reps
2 min. rest

Exercise 2a.

Walking Lunge You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Walking Lunge  thumbnail
4 sets
20 each leg reps
-- rest

Exercise 2b.

Romanian Deadlift You'll need: Barbell How to
Romanian Deadlift thumbnail
4 sets
8 reps
2 min. rest

Exercise 3.

Farmer's Walk You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Farmer's Walk  thumbnail
4 sets
As far as possible reps
3 min. rest
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