GTranslate

English Arabic Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Traditional) Esperanto French German Hindi Latvian Luxembourgish Malayalam Maltese Norwegian Portuguese Russian Spanish Tajik

LEGENDARY Arms - How Sergi Constance Built Titanic Tris

Print
By: 
Jaime Filer
BA Hon. Kinesiology

Sergi Constance: Be Legend. How the industry’s most popular fitness model got his legendary triceps

“Curls for girls.” “Suns out, guns out.” “Which way to the beach?” “Do you have a license for those guns?” For as long as bodybuilding has been a “thing,” guys and gals alike have been obsessed with jacked, lean, impressive arms. It’s one of the first things you notice on a physique, and the front double biceps is the popular pose we all throw out to anyone who dares ask if we even lift. But why is it that everyone always thinks of biceps first? The biceps, as the name suggests, only has two heads. The triceps, surprise, has three heads, and takes up about two thirds of your upper arm mass—or at least it should. The anatomy is as follows: You’ve got the long head (located on the upper inside), the medial head (lower inside) and lateral (outside—the part that looks like half a horseshoe). All three heads work together at all times, so you can’t specifically isolate one from the others. However, you can change the angle that you train arms, which ends up changing the emphasis on which head you’re using, thereby stressing each differently. But more on how to train later.

There’s one iconic picture of Arnold that probably inspired a generation of young men and women to put some emphasis on their triceps. He’s standing in front of a cable stack, with shaggy hair, in short shorts and a tank top, body slightly angled away from the camera so that you can see a giant slab of meat in the shape of a horseshoe hanging off his mammoth arms. You know the one, but if not, then just picture Kevin Levrone, Paul DeMayo, or Roelly Winklaar onstage. Inspired yet? These are athletes who valued complete development of the arm muscles, not just half. But as the Arnold image fades to black and white, we usher in the new era of fitness industry personalities and celebrities. There’s one competitor in particular who deserves to be recognized, especially when we talk about proportion, symmetry, conditioning, and, of course, arms.

Sergi Constance. Sergi competed as a junior bodybuilder in Valencia, Spain (where he’s originally from), but it wasn’t until he competed in the men’s physique category that he found his true calling. It took eight years for him to reach the upper echelon of the fitness industry, but now that he’s here, he doesn’t show signs of slowing down. He’s been featured on countless magazines, has his own clothing line and supplement sponsor, and like Arnold before him, has been captured in iconic photos that will be preserved long after his competitive career is over. He trains six days a week, and at 6'1" with a competition weight of 185, he needs to train his limbs hard to fill out his long muscle bellies. Sergi separates bis and tris usually, pairing tris with chest and abs. You may be wondering why he doesn’t train his triceps on a separate day from chest so that they’re fresh. To that, we say, “Stop wondering. Just look at his arms.” Clearly his routine is working for him … and his pipes.

“The contraction is always the most important part for the development of any body part.”

Favourite ab exercises:
I like to start my abs workout with easy movements and then go up with the intensity, moving to harder exercises. As an example, I like to start with crunches on the floor, then finish with a rope crunch or something.

Cardio:
Low-intensity cardio has worked well for me. I do cardio three times a week for 30 to 45 minutes on the treadmill on an incline. Cardio is great for burning fat and improving keeping fit.

NOTE: He takes out cardio completely when he’s trying to gain size in the off-season, and adds in cardio and abs back in when he wants to get shredded.

Nutrition/Diet:

Meal 1: Oats, 2 eggs, and 6 egg whites

Meal 2: 6 rice cakes, red meat, and walnuts

Meal 3: White rice, chicken, tomatoes, and walnuts

Meal 4: 2 Rice cakes, protein shake, isolate protein, and glutamine

Meal 5: Tuna, vegetables, and walnuts

Meal 6: Salmon, vegetables, and walnuts

I also add in some protein shakes for more calories. I’m also not scared of carbs because it helps me go harder in the gym and helps me with performance. If I’m trying to get my body fat down, I’ll carb cycle and just go higher with protein.

Mental approach

“Fit is not a destination. It’s a way of life.”

Motivation:

“My passion is what motivates me. I love bodybuilding and fitness, and seeing the progress. And also seeing changes in your body when you bulk or when you’re trying to get shredded.”

 

TRICEPS EXERCISES

1) Rope triceps press-downs

Execution:

- Attach a rope to a high pulley and grab it with palms facing each other.

- Stand with a very small lean forward.

- Bring the upper arms close to your body and perpendicular to the floor.

- Using the triceps, push the rope down as you bring each side of the rope to the side of your thighs. At the end of the movement, the arms are fully extended and perpendicular to the floor.

- The upper arms should always remain stationary next to your torso, and only the forearms should move.

- After holding for a second in the contracted position, bring the rope slowly up to the starting point.

(Note: You can twist your hand/wrist out at the bottom of the movement. This little tweak can help you feel the contraction harder and hit the lateral head of the triceps more.)

 

2) EZ-bar triceps push-downs

Execution:

- Attach an EZ bar to a high pulley and grab with palms face down.

- Stand with a very small lean forward.

- Bring the upper arms close to your body and perpendicular to the floor.

- Using the triceps, push the bar down to your thighs. At the end of the movement, the arms are fully extended and perpendicular to the floor.

- The upper arms should always remain stationary next to your torso, and only the forearms should move.

- After holding for a second in the contracted position, bring the bar slowly up to the starting point.

(Note: You can also take an underhand grip with this bar. This grip will enable you to hit the long and medial heads of the triceps.)

 

Sergi Tip: When you do this, really focus on the squeeze down. That’s how you get the striations to appear.

 

3) Seated machine triceps dip-style press-downs

Execution:

- Sit securely in a dip machine, and after you select the weight, firmly grasp the handles.

- Make sure to adjust them either wide or narrow, depending on your width and how the position feels on your shoulders.

- Keep your elbows in at your sides in order to place emphasis on the triceps. They should be bent at a 90 degree angle.

- Contract the triceps, and push down to extend your arms downwards.

- Slowly let your arms come back up to the starting position as you inhale.

(Note: When you’re fully extended, focus on keeping a little bend in your arms to keep tension on the triceps.)

 

4) Overhead dumbbell triceps extensions

Execution:

- Sit down on a bench or chair with back support.

- Grab a dumbbell with both hands and hold it overhead at arm’s length, or have somebody hand it to you, especially if it is very heavy. The top part of the dumbbell should be resting in the palms of your hands with your thumbs around it.

- Keeping your upper arms close to your head (elbows by ears) and perpendicular to the floor, lower the resistance. The upper arms should remain stationary and only the forearms should move.

- Use your triceps to raise the dumbbell.

(Note: There are a number of variations you can use with this exercise. You can perform this exercise standing. Or use a straight or EZ bar instead, holding the bar from the inside with the palms facing up. Or use a low pulley cable with a rope attachment or straight or EZ bar attachment.)

 

Jaime Filer: How many weeks out do you leave yourself to get ready for a contest?

Sergi Constance: To make sure and feel confident, I like to do a 12 weeks (3 months) prep, minimum, into a competition

JF: What is the last week of prep like for you in terms of diet, cardio, and training?

SC: The last week to me must to be a “easy” and relaxed week, because it's assumed that I already did the hard work. 4 to 2 weeks before the show, I will increase my cardio, to burn more extra calories and fat.
Also, 4 to 2 weeks before the show, I will decrease my caloric intake, focusing on reducing my carbohydrates, but increasing my protein intake to keep the muscle mass. The training will be high intensity, trying to keep the weights up, but adding intensity to the workout using techniques like supertsets, drop sets, circuits, etc.

The very last week, I will reduce or completely take out cardio, to not over stress my body. Because my body will be depleted and empty of glucose, fat, etc., now will be the time to refeed it with carbodhydrates to make it fuller, keeping the ripped look because there's no fat on my body. The training will just be to put final touches on the package, and to finally deplete all the body parts of the last glycogen, and also try to get a pump.

JF: How do you know when its the right time to make adjustments?

SC: It's about checking the mirror and analyzing how you look. It's important to me to never try to do nothing crazy or unusual, always try to be safe, and doing what works for me. I think the extremes are not good for the body, because if the body get stressed, there will be some problems like water retention, no pump, etc.

I always think it's best to have a good coach that helps you watching how you look through his eyes and your own.

JF: What will you improve on from 2016 going into 2017?

SC: One of my goals in 2017 is to get a “perfect physique”; I´m working really hard to improve some body parts, such as my legs and my back.  My shoulders and arms respond very well to my workouts so thats why I'm focused, and prioritizing the other body parts to keep the balance I need.

JF: Do you have cheat meals? What is your favourite?

SC: Yes, I have cheat meals. To me, they are so important. I do 1-2 cheat meals days when I'm in my “bulking period”, and almost 1 cheat meal when I'm prepping for a show. When I'm bulking, my favorite cheat meal is burgers and fries. When I'm prepping for a show, my favourite cheat meal is a lot of sushi pieces.

JF: Is it hard mentally and physically to stay so lean all year long?

SC: Sometimes it's really hard to be mentally motivated all year long, because in my case, I try to be aesthetic and “in shape” all year round. Because of that, I don't see big changes like old school bodybuilding where the people use to do big bulking periods and show a fatty look, and then they would change their diet and get shredded, so they see the changes in the body.

I always look “the same”, which means it's harder to make big changes, and the progress to build muscle mass is slower.

Anyway, I always try to remember that this is my passion, and I'm doing what I love, and that gives me back all the motivation that I need.