Calves Priority Workout

Calves Priority Workout

In this article, we will show you a two-day workout split, which is suited for intermediate and advanced athletes, and focuses on the development of one of the most underrated muscle groups, namely- the calves.

Day 1- Pump!

During day one, our focus will be maximum and optimal blood filling of the calf musculature, meaning that we will be doing long sets with a high number of reps.

Warm up

Make sure to warm up your ankles, hips and knees. After warming up, proceed to some light cardio- 10 minutes of moderate pace rope jumping would do perfectly fine.

ExerciseNumber of SetsNumber of Repetitions
Straight leg calf raises525+
Single leg calf raises530+
Calf stretching320 seconds


Straight legged calf raises

Standing machine calf raise


  • Get under the pads, so that you are comfortable
  • Step with your toes on the edge of the stepping platform
  • Let your heels down slowly, stretching the calves
  • Push up, contracting the calves
  • Hold contraction briefly
  • Let the heels go down again, slowly

Single leg calf raises

single leg calf raisesThis exercise can be done with body-weight at first, and dumbbells once your body-weight is not sufficient to put a significant load on the calves.


  • Step with one of your legs on an edge- stand on your toes
  • Let the heel down to stretch out the calf musculature
  • Push up, contracting the calves

Calf stretches

calf stretchesExecution

  • Stand up straight against a wall
  • Touch the wall with your toes, then lift them up, while keeping the heel on the ground
  • Keep your body straight, while stretching the calves as illustrated


Stretch each calf individually.

Hold the stretch for up to 15 seconds.

All of the exercises are very simple- The movement is a basic calf raise on your toes, with a brief pause during the peak contraction and a slow negative (you let down slowly before the next repetition)


The rest times between sets are up to 180 seconds.

Day two- Intensity

This second calf workout relies on short, heavy sets that will really put the fast muscle fibers in the calf musculature to the test.

The goal for the first exercise is to lift a big volume of weight for a short period of time, using moderate pace during execution.

The following sets are done with a focus on peak flexion.

Warm up is mandatory, do not forget it.

ExerciseNumber of SetsNumber of Repetitions
Leg press calf raises512
Standing calf raises512
Calf stretching520 seconds


Leg press calf raises

leg press calf raises


  • Lay down with your back and butt tightly tucked onto the pads
  • Place your toes at the bottom of the platform
  • Unrack the sled
  • Push up, contracting the calves
  • Hold contraction briefly
  • Slowly let the weight down, stretching the calves

Standing calf raises

Standing machine calf raise

The second exercise on day two, is the same as the first exercise on day one- The emphasis is on calf movements, done with straight legs, as this allows us to put maximum tension on the meaty part of the calves.

How to place those workouts within our training split?

Day one and day two calf workouts should have at least a 48-hour period between them, which makes them perfect to fit in within a 3-day training split.

Make sure to avoid doing these workouts the day before your leg day, as exhausted calves will take away from your leg workout.

These calf workouts are best used during the beginning of your off-season, in your well-planned training strategy.

Calves, as we know can be one of those stubborn muscle groups, of which it’s development, many people blame on genetics.

However, we can assure you that through proper workouts, you can get the best version of YOUR calves, no matter how they are shaped and inserted genetically.

So, our motto is still valid- Don’t Blame Your Genetics. Break the Code!

The two calf workouts combine the common ideology that in order for the calves to grow, they need high intensity, high volume and a ton of stretching.

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