How do I incorporate them into the 5×5 routine?
Everyone loves biceps, and you won’t grow them to any significant degree on this routine. My advice is to add a bicep isolation movement to the end of every session. What movement doesn’t really matter, it can be a barbell curl, an incline curl, a dumbbell curl, etc. Do 2-3 sets of 8 reps.
The triceps already get worked in the Bench Press and Overhead Press, so they don’t need that much extra volume, but they still need a bit of additional work. I recommend adding either Close Grip Bench Press, or Skullcrushers. 1-2 sets of 8 reps to the end of each session and you’re good to go.
For the hamstrings, a second deadlift should be added. However, instead of a conventional deadlift, you’d do a Stiff Leg Deadlift, or even a Deficit Stiff Leg Deadlift if you have enough mobility and you can do it safety. Keep the sets and reps the same as the conventional deadlift, 1×5.
Rear delt work is probably the biggest flaw in 5×5. The Barbell Rows manage to control the damage a bit, but they are still neglected. This is a problem because you’re pressing 3 times per week. For the majority of people this will cause shoulder imbalances when followed for a very long time . I recommend doing Facepulls or Rear Delt Flies, 2-3 sets of 12 is enough to maintain proper balance in the shoulder.
Traps will get worked during the deadlift, however, the amount of volume in the deadlifts isn’t enough for reasonable growth, because they require fewer sets in order not to impact recovery too much. Any type of Shrug with 1-2 sets of 10 will do the trick.
And last but not least, for the calves, you can do any type of leg calf raise, as long as your legs are straight. This will make sure you work both the gastroc and soleus part of the calves. Calves are very genetic, so there’s really no point in killing them too much and expect them to go from nothing to amazing, 2-3 sets of 8 reps on Day A is more than enough for growth.
Because of the impact of Deficit Deadlifts on your lower back, it’s better to move the Barbell Rows to Day B.
So let’s recap our new, improved version of 5×5.
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