The "insane like Bane" workout.

Workout Summary

Main Goal:
Build Muscle
Workout Type:
Training Level:
Days Per Week:
Equipment Required:
Barbell, Bodyweight, Dumbbells, Machines
Target Gender:
Male & Female

Workout Description

Tom Hardy put on some serious muscle for the role of Bane in the Dark Knight Rises movie. After all, Bane is an imposing character, physically intimidating and more of a superior physical match for the Caped Crusader. Strong, commanding and powerful, his presence speaks for itself.

Couldn’t we all use a little more power and strength in our lives? Does your current routine need a little kick in the butt? Maybe you need a few new moves, techniques and tips to get you growing bigger and stronger again?

The following are some plateau-busting, intensity-amplifying tactics so you can be more like Bane!

14 Superhero-Crushing Moves to Grow On

Floor clean and push press: This move will get your hormones surging for sure! Used primarily as a shoulder strength and power builder, it will pack on serious mass all over. Simply clean the bar from the floor using hips, legs and shoulder rotation to catch the bar on your shoulders. From this position use a slight bump with your legs to press the bar overhead with your deltoids, arms and traps. This isn’t a clean and jerk per se, but more of a clean and shoulder press.

Wide-grip upright row: Simply take a grip 8-12 inches wider than shoulder width and pull up with your elbows. This will hit the middle deltoids more than a standard close-grip upright row.

Double plate raise: Want to challenge your grip and look like a beast? Try the standard front plate raise with two smaller plates instead of one that can comfortably fit in your grip. If you can do a 45 pound plate, try two 25s. Your forearms will be screaming for more!

Decline bench close-grip triceps press: You’ve done plenty of close-grip benches in your day, right? Try it on a decline bench for a better mechanical advantage and shoulder relief.

Seated barbell curl: As the name implies, the seated barbell curl will jack up your strength in no time. Sit with the barbell in your lap and curl up only the upper half of the move. On the way down don’t rest the bar, just touch and go.

Modified arching pull-up: Perform a regular, shoulder width pull-up with an underhand grip and instead of bringing your chest to the bar, try bringing your stomach to the bar.

Partial deadlift: I couldn’t help but add this one in. Start with the bar just below your knees. You can crank these out off of the end of a bench or set in a Smith machine.

Side-to-side pull-up: An old favorite of Arnold, take a close, parallel grip and alternate each side of your head up to the bar.

Floor press with dumbbells: This will hit that sweet spot for a bigger bench. Simply lay down on the floor with two dumbbells and press them up on the last half of the movement. Be sure not to rest your upper arms on the floor, just touch and go.

Feet-elevated three-point push-up: Prop your feet on a bench and hands on the floor in the push-up position. Put one foot on top of the other so only the single foot is touching the bench.

Full-range squat: You may be scratching your head as to why this one’s on the list. There is good reason: I can count on one hand in my over twenty years lifting that I have seen someone do a full-range free weight squat. If you are one of the unlucky ones, swallow your pride, cut your weight in half and get to work.

1 ½ rep front squat: If you are like many, you may have a bit of difficulty holding heavy weight on your shoulders during a front squat. Try 1 ½ rep sets. Descend with the bar and only go halfway up, descend again and then complete a full range of motion rep. That is one rep. This technique will make light weight feel like a ton!

Modified ham raise: If you find your gym without a true horizontal bench to perform glute/ham raises, but you are able to use an angled hyperextension bench then this move will be a welcomed addition. Keeping your knees on the bench, extend your body out staying horizontal to the floor. Curl yourself back in (like a leg curl) keeping that horizontal position.

Run-the-rack dumbbell calf raise: Choose a heavy dumbbell, don’t think about it too much, just do it! Perform one-legged calf raises off of the floor for each leg. Once you are finished with both legs, choose the next lighter weight and repeat. Run the entire rack before stopping.

The Insane Bane Training Program

Now let’s put these moves in a program to get you growing again and build a physique even a superhero would envy. Below is a sample program best utilized on a Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday schedule with Wednesday and the weekend off.

The modified moves are highlighted.

Exercise Warm Up Working Sets Rest Periods
Incline Barbell Bench Press 2 x 10-15 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Dumbbell Floor Press 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Modified Arching Pull Up 1 x 10 AMAP 2 minutes
Partial Deadlift 1 x 10 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Floor Clean and Push Press 1 x 10 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 2 x 10-15 2 minutes
Floor Crunch 4 x 10-20 1 minute
Exercise Warm Up Working Sets Rest Periods
Dumbbell Calf Raise – Run The Rack 1 x 15 2×3 by Rack 2 minutes
Full-Range Squat 2 x 10-15 5-10 2 minutes
Walking Lunge 2 Lengths 2 minutes
Modified Hamstring Raise 1 x 10 2 x AMAP 2 minutes
Seated Barbell Curl 1 x 10 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Dips 1 x 10 2 x 5-8 2 minutes
Hanging Leg Raise 4 x 10-20 1 minute
Exercise Warm Up Working Sets Rest Periods
Barbell Bench Press 2 x 10-15 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Feet Elevated 3 Point Push Up 2 x AMAP 2 minutes
Side to Side Pull Up 1 x 10 2 x AMAP 2 minutes
T Bar or Barbell Row 1 x 10 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Double Plate Raise 1 x 10 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Wide Grip Upright Row 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Incline Sit Up 4 x 10-20 1 minute
Exercise Warm Up Working Sets Rest Periods
Seated Calf Raise 1 x 10-15 2 x 10-15 2 minutes
1 1/2 rep Front Squat 2 x 10-15 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Single Leg Press 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Romanian Deadlift 1 x 10 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Standing Dumbbell Curl 1 x 10 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Decline Close Grip Tricep Press 1 x 10 2 x 8-12 2 minutes
Lying Leg Raise 4 x 10-20 1 minute

AMAP = As Many As Possible.


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