Rich Gaspari’s Back/Lats Growth Routine
Just about every guy in the gym is there to get “bigger”. Every Monday you experience a log jam with the bench press stations because so many guys think getting a big chest is the quickest path to this goal. While having an impressive chest definitely helps this endeavor, nothing, absolutely NOTHING makes a person look more imposing than having a thick and wide back. Try doing this routine for the next 6-8 weeks, and see how much tighter your shirts fit, how much all of your other lifts go up, and how many people come up to you and ask you “what are you on”?
Deadlifts: 4 sets x 6-8 reps
The granddaddy of all back exercises. Do these with good form to make sure you prevent injury, but man up and do these HEAVY. Warm up fully with 2-4 light sets before beginning working sets.
Set 1: 8 reps to failure
Set 2: 8 reps to failure
Set 3: 6 reps to failure
Set 4: 6 reps to failure
Wide Grip Lat Pull Down: 4 sets x 10 reps
This is one of the, if not THE best way to add serious width to your lats. While most suggest to use “perfect” form on these, I prefer to incorporate a little body motion to move more weight. Bring the bar fully down and contract your lats at the bottom of the movement to maximize muscle fiber recruitment.
Sets 1-4: 10 HEAVY reps to failure
Barbell Row: 4 sets x 6-12 reps
This is another incredible back thickness exercise that should be done HEAVY. Get into a nice athletic stance with your knees bent slightly and keep your lower back neutral (don’t round it our), and keep your hips/back at as close to a 90 degree bend as possible to guarantee as much lat incorporation as possible.
Set 1: 12 reps to failure
Set 2: 10 reps to failure
Set 3: 8 reps to failure
Set 4: 6 reps to failure
Straight Arm Push Down: 6 sets x 12 reps
This exercise might seem a lot easier than the others, however if it’s done right it should be excruciating, especially at the end of your workout. Keep your arms completely straight, and focus on flexing your lats the entire way down, and hold each rep for 1-3 seconds. The harder you flex and the longer you hold, the more blood will be forced into the muscle and the more intense your pump will get.
Sets 1-4: 12 reps until failure, hold each rep for 1 full second
Sets 5-6: 12 reps until failure using 80% of the weight of sets 1-4. Hole each rep for 3 full seconds.
This back workout is NOT for the faint of heart. To make sure you have the goods to actually survive it, I’d suggest trying out my personal favorite pre-workout/intra-workout stack. About 30 minutes before your workout, combine 1 scoop of SuperPump™ 250 along with 1 scoop of Glycofuse™. During your workout, sip on a combination of AminoLast™ and another 1 scoop of Glycofuse™ to make sure you have the natural energy to keep busting out more reps, while also staying anabolic through this long stretch of sets/reps.
*Rich Gaspari is the CEO and owner of Gaspari Nutrition which is celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2018. Rich has a vast array of wins and top 3 placings at bodybuilding events all around the world. He is best known as the very first winner of the Arnold Classic in Columbus, Ohio and took runner-up three times in a row on the Mr. Olympia stage. For more on Rich visit him at gasparinutrition.com.