If you want bigger pecs then you will have to get these 5 points handled.
They are the foundation of achieving a large defined chest.
My chest is the slowest growing muscle on my body! Therefore I had to find soluitions to this problem.
I’ve worked out how to build muscle & bulk even though it seemed this area of my body was resisting the growth!
Maybe you experience the same frustration? I’ll give you the answers here…
Below are 5 major points that I have learnt build a bigger chest:
1) Weight For It…
If you really want to pack on lean muscle how much weight should you use & how many reps should you perform?
Over the past 15 years I have tried them all! A light-weight with lots of reps, heavy weight with only a few reps & everything in between.
What I have found to work best is the ‘heavy weight low rep’ option.
I commonly work my chest to its 6-rep max. What I have discovered through trial & error is that my chest likes to be overloaded with a heavy weight & worked to it’s max for 6-reps or less.
Most of my workouts will consist of a number of chest exercises that work that area within this rep range.
ShapeTrainer Advice: Lift Heavy – obviously with perfect technique! Work your 6-rep max.
2) Workout 200 Times Per Week!…
The bottom line is this – the more frequently you work a muscle the more it will grow.
Whenever you increase volume of training, that is the amount of weight you are lifting, the amount of repetitions you perform (or sets) & frequency of your training, then you will stimulate muscle growth.
So, personally what I like to do is work the muscle, feel the soreness from the training (DOMS – Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) & then hit the muscle again as soon as that pain starts to subside.
For me, that usually means about 1 days rest in between workouts.
Depending on how experienced you are in the gym will dictate how sore you get after your workouts – that is as long as you are working out properly.
I remember when I began training how sore I was after a good weight training session! Nowadays the soreness is rarely that painful & I definitely recover quicker.
This is because I have learnt more effective Lifestyle, Exercise, Nutrition & Supplementation techniques. If you follow my posts & read my books you too can learn all I know in a quicker time period than it took me!
ShapeTrainer Advise: Work your chest as much as possible, as soon as the pain starts to subside hit it again with another workout. Keep doing this & you will surely see better results.
3) Choices, Choices…
Obviously if you want to work your chest then you have to perform chest exercises! However, are some exercises better than others? My answer is yes.
Now the answer to this is personal & you may find that different exercises hit your chest more intensely than others.
What I have found though is that the following exercises get deep into my chest muscle & I have experienced much better muscle growth since incorporating them in to my routines on a regular basis.
Are You Inclined…
Incline Chest Exercises work the upper area of your chest. When building a bigger chest I have found it very useful to focus on building this area.
This will give more of a lift & a denser look to your pecs.
Keep working the incline through a variety of positions.
For instance: Incline dumbbell press & fly, Incline cable fly & press, Incline press using the bar, wide & close grip & incline push-ups (raise your feet on a bench). I regularly like to use push-ups as a drop set.
I also like to use weighted Dips & after a heavy set of a chest exercise I often drop straight into a push-up.
To really burn the chest muscles you need to overload them as I mentioned earlier. Work them to their max with a heavy weight & then really finish them off with body weight push-ups.
With some focus on the incline you must also apply some elbow grease to the other areas of your chest. Use a flat bench to perform pressing & fly movements.
Cables are great for the freedom of movement through your full range of motion.
Load it up, use a standing position for pushes & fly’s, aim different directions to hit areas of your chest that feel less developed or firm.
For instance in a standing position push forward & down to hit the lower part of your chest. Push straight forward to hit the middle area & push up to work the upper area. You can focus on one area per set or even mix it up, try different methods & see which feel best to you.
Use different bench positions, incline – flat – declined. Work the life out of it – or in to it!
ShapeTrainer Advice: Focus on the incline as well as focusing on a variety of movements to develop the whole of your chest.
3) Speed Limit…
Varying speeds have been proven to affect muscle growth.
Performing your set slower will ensure you hit more muscle fibers & therefore stimulate greater growth. So try doing 12 second repetitions – 6 seconds lowering the weight, 6 seconds lifting the weight.
You may find this very uncomfortable but go into the discomfort & you will get more results.
You could do this for a period of 4 weeks & then switch it up. Switch to a fast slow tempo. For example, 1 second raising the weight & 6 seconds lowering it.
So it would be a fast powerful push & slow controlled return of the weight.
I personally like to set a speed for a program & improve over the following weeks.
What I mean is that I will perform exercises slowly, using the 12-second rep for a period of time like 7 weeks, then switch to a faster set working more of a power movement for the next 7 weeks.
4) How Low Can You Go…
I have found that being conscious of the range at which I work each muscle gives me more of a developed look & feel.
Now when you work your chest, especially if you are going heavy, be careful that you don’t put your shoulder out!
What I do is keep control of the weight & go as low or far back into the movement as possible while keeping the focus on my chest muscles.
At the point at which I feel the movement going into my shoulder I know that is the point to stop going that direction & start pushing the other direction!
I personally like to work as much of a range as possible & I get my clients to do the same.
That means I make the movement as big as I can. Feel the muscle working to it’s full length in both directions of the movement.
The range of motion will determine the look of your muscle. If you want a well developed, defined, useful muscle, then work as much range of motion as possible.
Improve Your Joints…
This is also much healthier for your joints – as long as you always remain in control of the movement.
The longer a muscle is the better it will perform. If you are tight then your performance is being hindered!
If your muscle is tight then the range of motion at a joint will also be tight. Over time the joint can become stiff through lack of movement through it’s full range!
Stretch that muscle, both when you’re warm for development & also when you’re in the exercise working-out, this ensures you work the muscle in it’s entirety, improving its full functioning length & at the same time maintaining healthy joints.
ShapeTrainer Advice: Work the full range of the muscle for maximum returns from your workouts.
5) Focus Your Mind…
Last but not least is adding a bit of extra focus – from your mind.
When you perform an exercise, where is your mind?
Do you find yourself thinking about your ‘To Do’ List? Or what your next meal is going to be? Well stop it!
When you are training, focus on your training! I always ask my clients ‘Where do you feel that most?’ as they perform an exercise.
What this does is makes you aware of exactly what muscle(s) are doing the work. Sometimes you may feel a different muscle working to what you expected!
Are You A Commoner…
It is very common for certain muscles to take over the movement of other muscles!
Why does that happen?
This could be due to many reasons; fatigue in the muscle that’s meant to be working, movement pattern is not perfect, you’re stronger in another muscle group so your brain has recruited those muscles to perform the movement or many other reasons.
The answer is to bring your focus to the muscle you are meant to be working & get that bugger to work. Keep doing this & you will eventually correct that problem.
Only The Strong Survive…
The stronger you make a muscle the more your brain will recruit it.
So if you keep focusing on a specific muscle time & again, eventually you will increase its strength & ability to perform that movement.
Over time the other muscles that your brain was recruiting to perform the movement will relax more allowing the correct muscles for that movement to do their work.
So to conclude what I am saying, when you perform an exercise, think precisely which muscle & exactly where in that muscle you want to be working.
ShapeTrainer Advice: Focus your mind on your chest for every set of every exercise you perform on it. You will notice a massive improvement in size, shape & functional ability.
A Little Added Extra…
As not to make this article too long I have focused on 5 main points.
I would also like you to quickly consider 3 more points:
1. Diet: You are what you eat – it’s a fact. Having optimal nutrition will ensure quicker muscle growth.
2. Stretch: I touched on it above about how the length of the muscle affects its function. The more ideal length of your muscles the better they will work for you.
3. Body-Fat %: This plays a massive role in the look of your physique. The lower your body-fat the more muscle definition you will see. The more ideal your body-fat the better you will physically perform on a day to day basis & when in sporting situations.
I will expand these point further in future articles. For now apply what is within this article & reap the rewards. Enjoy.
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