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Best Chest Exercise You're Not Doing

But Should Be!

Posted by Scott_Herman - September 24th, 2018

Today I’m going to teach you a new workout technique that’s going to take your chest gains to the next level, especially if you have a flat chest or you’ve hit a muscle building plateau.

This workout is going to be a little different than what you’re used to, and the reason is because I’m pretty confident the majority of you reading this that are having a hard time building your chest, you’re only taking advantage of two out of the three muscle building mechanisms. Chances are you’re going to the gym and benching as heavy as you possibly can, and then probably throwing in some flys along the way as well. But you’re probably staying in that 6 – 8 or 8 – 12 rep range. While that’s all well and good, like I said, that only allows you to take advantage of two out of the three muscle building mechanisms. Those mechanisms are…

Mechanical Tension: This is about the load or weight that you put on your muscles when you exercise.

Muscle Damage: Occurs when you exercise and cause micro tears to your muscles. In order to fix these tears, your body creates new muscle tissue, causing your muscles to grow.

Now it’s time to implement the third muscle building mechanism to your next workout, to help spark new growth and gains, and that mechanism is…

Metabolic Stress: Performing exercises that rely heavily on anaerobic glycolysis for energy production. This type of technique is what gives you THE PUMP that we all love.

It’s kind of funny that we don’t take advantage of this muscle building mechanism as much as we should, because we love the pump! The pump is the best feeling in the world, that’s what makes you want to go to the gym. If you haven’t had a good pump in a while, this workout is going to rock your boat HARDCORE!

Exercise #1: Barbell Bench Press (6 – 8 Reps, 8 Sets)

You’re going to go to the gym, and you’re going to do 8 sets of a flat barbell bench press. The reason why you’re using a barbell rather than using dumbbells is because I want you to really take advantage of mechanical tension, and lift as HEAVY as you possibly can. You’re going to lift so heavy that you might even need a spotter to help you, so that you can maximize those 6 – 8 repetitions for all 8 sets.

You might be wondering why you’re doing 8 sets of just a flat bench press. In my opinion, each and every single one of you is going to be able to progress faster and more efficiently by sticking with one exercise that gives you the most bang for your buck, rather than doing five separate exercises. A lot of us go to the gym and keep moving from machine to machine to machine, or exercise to exercise to exercise, with no real focus on just building up that mind-muscle connection, and allowing our bodies to get stronger and lift as heavy as possible. With this movement, only rest 90 – 120 seconds between each set.

Exercise #2: Plate Press (200 Reps: 20 – 30 Reps At A Time)

As soon as you’re finished there, you’re going to go over and do an exercise called a plate press. You’re going to perform the movement on a 30 degree incline bench, and you’re going to complete 200 repetitions, doing at least 20 – 30 reps per set, while resting as little as possible in-between those sets. That high amount of repetitions is going to allow us to take advantage of that metabolic stress.

Doing that many repetitions after pre-fatiguing / pre-exhausting your chest on the barbell bench press is going to engorge your chest with so much blood and such a huge pump, that it’s not going to be able to anything besides expand and grow and adapt. It might sound too good to be true and it might sound too easy, but at the end of the day fitness really isn’t complicated. You just need to go to the gym and see what works. If what you’re doing now isn’t working, this may very well work for you. I’ve already applied this concept to other exercises, and I’m applying it to my full body program.

Why Are These Exercises Paired Together?

The reason why this exercise works so well and the reason why you’re doing this over other exercises is that it’s going to allow you to take advantage of both functions of the chest. On the barbell bench press, you’re obviously taking advantage of flexion of the humerus, but you’re not able to take advantage of adduction of the arms. That’s why usually when you bench press, it’s good to use dumbbells, so that you can press and adduct a bit. You’re aiming to lift as heavy as possible on the bench press, therefore it’s preferable to use the barbell.

When you start doing the plate press, a couple of different things are happening. You’re not just taking two plates, putting them together, and pressing them up and down, it’s much more than that. You’re taking those two plates, you’re pressing them together, and then you’re squeezing them together as hard as you can as you go up, and as you go down. As you’re squeezing your hands together, when you get to the top of the movement, your whole chest should feel like it’s about to explode on every single repetition.

You also won’t be able to use a lot of weight, because you’re trying to get 20 – 30 repetitions at a time. I recommend you start with two 10lb plates, and then if that’s too easy, add two 5lb plates to the outside as well. You can then move up to four 10lb plates if that becomes too easy as well, but always start light to make sure you can hit the rep range, and the goal number of 200 reps.

Why Your Chest Might Not Be Growing

Another reason that you might not be seeing chest growth is because you’re hitting your chest once a week. As a natural lifter you’ve got to take advantage of the anabolic window, and you have to understand that it’s going to close every 36 hours or so. That means if you’re training your chest on Monday, and you don’t hit it again until next Monday, that is 6 days where your chest is not seeing any growth after that first 36 hour period.


If you want to see growth, you can apply this concept to your current routine, and you can hit it 2 – 3 times per week. It’s a combination of taking advantage of all three muscle building mechanisms, as well as the anabolic window (training your chest multiple times per week), which is going to allow you to break your plateau and get that full, big chest that you’ve always wanted!

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awesome article!