Sound the alarm sweetie. We are in a full blown calves crisis! Gone are the neanderthal days of bro-ed out upper body only workouts. Leg day is in full bloom for every straight, gay and twink. As far as the eye can see there quads and booty’s galore, but don’t look too far down. You might fall upon two twigs holding them up.
So why are in such proportion epidemic?
First, let’s face it; calves aren’t a glamor muscle. No one is really feeling up your calves in a bar. They are like the wing man for your booty and quads. However, don’t get it twisted. You are judged by the company you keep. People notice symmetry. A guy with well developed calves are like unicorns. You don’t see them often and when you do, they are like really pretty.
On many levels they represent athleticism and achievement. It’s no secret that guys don’t like to put in the time for them, so the extra effort is often admired.
Beyond visuals calves will save your ass. I cannot tell you how often I hear about the wear and tear from running and cardio. However, strong calves are powerful in preventing injury. They stabilize the knee and are key in absorbing the impact from walking, running and jumping. Athletes spend tons of time conditioning them for more powerful jumps and to improve their agility.
You don’t need to be an athlete to get great calves, but they may not blow up after one workout. Some say the calves are actually resistant to change because of their muscle fibers and anatomical configuration.
The larger issue is, dudes just don’t know a lot of calf exercises and it’s not their fault. There just aren’t a lot out there. However, you just need to get out of the box to start seeing results.
One Move And Two Videos
Here are 3 calf exercise variations, that can activate and isolate your calves like never before.
3 sets of each.
Cardio: BEACH BLASTER:
5 min Sand Run to 5 min Jump Rope: The feet stabilizing in the sand and push off factor, fire the calves majorly. The constant impact from the jump rope make it my top calf exercise. Be prepared to feel this combo.
Leg Press Calf Extension:
A normal calf raise can require stabilization. The angle of Leg Press can allow you get more calf activation by giving you more isolation.
1) Load the Leg Press with a medium weight
2) Sitting, bring your feet shoulders width apart on plate and push up
3) Carefully align the plate on the balls of your feet with heels off
4) Flex and extend your foot straight and pause for 2 sec
5) Repeat with plate in a static raised position
Donkey Calf Raise:
This is another variation that eliminates momentum and really isolates. I like it as a body weight burnout. Push yourself to do as many as you can, safely.
1) Line up a small box or platform just outside something stable.
2) Step onto box and grab the pole
3) Bring heels off and shift onto balls of feet. Fold fully forward
4) Flex your calves straight, staying bent over
5) Return and start position to where calves are stretched, hanging off edge
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