High Intensity Chest Blaster

Blast your chest with this fast-paced, high intensity pec workout that features heavy rest-pause sets, and slow isolation movements.

Workout Summary

Build Muscle
Single Muscle Group
Intermediate
1
Barbell, Cables, Dumbbells, Machines
Male & Female

Workout Description

The high intensity chest blaster workout can be used for a 4 to 6 week cycle, or as a rut buster when you simply want to try something different. This routine is relatively brief (30 minutes), and can also be used on days in which you have a limited amount of time to workout.

In total, you will be performing 16 sets using 4 exercises - 2 compound movements and 2 isolation movements. Compound lifts will utilize strength and rest-pause training, and isolation lifts will focus on slower reps and the "mind-muscle" connection.

Compound Exercises. For the two compound lifts in this workout, pick a weight that allows you to knock out 8 to 12 reps before reaching failure. Start by performing an all-out set, stopping about one rep shy of failure. Rack the weight and rest exactly 45 seconds. Perform another set, again stopping one rep shy of failure.

Continue this pattern until you complete 5 total sets. Focus on brute strength, and getting the weight up with good form at all costs. These sets are all about man vs. mountain! You may be able to complete only a rep or two on the last several sets. Don't worry about this low volume. You are destroying your pecs with limited rest and heavy weight, and are after cumulative muscle stress and fatigue.

The best chest compound movements are the bench press, dumbbell bench press, dips, and appropriate variations. When you can perform 25 reps for all 5 sets, add weight.

Isolation Movements. For the two isolation lifts, concentrate on feeling the chest muscles work. Perform each rep with a 4 second concentric motion, and a 4 to 6 second eccentric (negative) motion. Squeeze each contraction and make your pecs work! Rest about 2 minutes between each set. Perform about 6 to 8 reps for isolation movements, and no more then 10 reps per set.

The best chest isolation movements are flyes, pec dec, or cable crossovers. It doesn't matter which exercises you use. Pick 2 isolation movements you enjoy, and hammer your chest! When you can perform 10 reps with an isolation movement, add weight.

High Intensity Chest Blaster
Chest
Exercise Sets Reps
Bench Press 5 Rest-pause 45 Seconds
Pec Dec 2-3 Slow 4-6 Cadence
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 5 Rest-pause 45 Seconds
Cable Crossovers 2-3 Slow 4-6 Cadence
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About The Author
Max Riley is a freelance muscle building and nutrition writer who has had his work appear in numerous print and Internet magazines.

395 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Fri, 05/14/2010 - 13:05
alvin
can i add also the bicep blaster program with this chest blaster program?
Steven's picture
Posted Fri, 05/14/2010 - 18:48
Steven
You bet!
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Posted Tue, 06/15/2010 - 15:30
Julio
i dont hace a pec dec or cable crossover at home, i cant go to the gym, how could i replace these 2 workouts?
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 06/16/2010 - 11:22
Steven
I would use flyes and incline flyes as a replacement.
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Posted Fri, 08/13/2010 - 16:22
luigi
is it normal flyes are destroying my shoulders before my pec?
Steven's picture
Posted Sun, 08/15/2010 - 14:27
Steven
Are they hurting your shoulders, or tiring your shoulders?
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Posted Thu, 10/21/2010 - 17:09
logan
how many reps of flies and incline flies would i do?
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 10/21/2010 - 17:26
Steven
As many as possible. When you can perform 10 reps with an isolation movement, add weight.
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Posted Sun, 05/08/2011 - 22:01
Isa
I would like to know what do I need to do in order to get my chest grow bigger in the upper portion
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Posted Sat, 11/05/2011 - 11:06
lonnie walker
do incline dumbell press,follow by incline butterflies
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Posted Mon, 09/19/2011 - 16:57
Keith owens
I want to know the same thing
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Posted Sat, 05/15/2010 - 04:12
Rhan
plz tell me what is mean by Perform another set, again stopping one rep shy of failure.
Steven's picture
Posted Sat, 05/15/2010 - 12:24
Steven
You perform a set, rest the stated amount of time, and then perform another set. You do not train to failure, but stop when you believe you might fail on the next rep.
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Posted Sat, 05/15/2010 - 17:25
dominic deangelis
on the bench press how many reps should i do just the max of what ever i can do or what
Steven's picture
Posted Sun, 05/16/2010 - 10:00
Steven
Stop each set when you think you may fail on the next rep.
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Posted Mon, 05/17/2010 - 16:13
jeff houghtaling
Is it okay to cycle this chest workout with others (i.e., do this workout one week, then say, the "Doug's super shredding routine" the next week, and so on), or should I do this workout every week for 6-8 weeks?
Steven's picture
Posted Mon, 05/17/2010 - 16:18
Steven
I would recommend cycling it with one other workout, and doing each every other week. If you cycle too many things, it can start to impact your ability to progress in weight.
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Posted Wed, 05/19/2010 - 03:27
shaman
what does 4-6 cadence means??
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 05/19/2010 - 08:16
Steven
A 4 second concentric (positive) motion and a 6 second eccentric (negative) motion. Your rep is taking 4 seconds and the lowering takes 6 seconds.
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Posted Sat, 02/05/2011 - 04:18
Santrel
Huh? Can you explain that better to me...Im new to bodybuilding as well
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Posted Thu, 07/14/2011 - 16:20
brendan
take 4secs pushing the weight away from you and 6secs dropping the weight towards you.
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Posted Tue, 10/25/2011 - 12:30
Norvell
Steve, When you say "cycling it with one other workout", do you mean another chest workout? or something like a tricep workout? If so, for a chest workout, what chest workout would you recommend that would complement your workout?
Steven's picture
Posted Tue, 10/25/2011 - 16:44
Steven
I was telling the poster to cycle workouts every other week. It's not needed but can add variety.
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Posted Thu, 05/20/2010 - 06:56
jack
decline bench press or decline dumbbell press are helpful for chest? is that necessary to add them for building chest muscles?
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 05/20/2010 - 07:59
Steven
They are not necessary. You could use them instead of inclines if you prefer.
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Posted Thu, 05/20/2010 - 16:32
Al
Since the triceps are mostly the secondary muscle when working out the chest, is it better to do a tricep workout rather than a bicep in conjuction or does it matter?
Steven's picture
Posted Thu, 05/20/2010 - 17:48
Steven
You could do either. I sometimes follow chest with triceps, and occasionally workout triceps with shoulders.
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Posted Fri, 05/21/2010 - 14:04
Jake
Tell me alternative for cable crossover
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Posted Sat, 06/05/2010 - 11:58
glaxman
I basically do this workout except I do flat dumbbell press instead of bench it works great. Doing the pec dec and squezzing really tight with a pause on the contraction works well.
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Posted Sat, 06/05/2010 - 17:02
Connor Berdych
Is it bad to do this exercise more than 1 time per week?
Steven's picture
Posted Sun, 06/06/2010 - 09:46
Steven
It can be counterproductive. When you increase the frequency of your workouts you generally want to decrease the volume of sets.
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Posted Mon, 06/07/2010 - 21:43
Remy Piazza
Hey Steve. I love this workout. My chest has grown bigger and stronger - Thanks! One question though - my lower, outside chest doesn't seem to be developing - what do you recommend I do to develop this area too?
Steven's picture
Posted Tue, 06/08/2010 - 08:50
Steven
I would recommend working in chest dips.
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Posted Thu, 09/29/2011 - 05:17
mark
what shoulder program can i use?
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Posted Fri, 11/12/2010 - 15:39
edward
go wider
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Posted Tue, 07/19/2011 - 04:09
Highschool Hercules
Just remember you can't shape your muscles, just build them.
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Posted Tue, 06/08/2010 - 19:13
Vang
Why is it only 1 day out of the week ? why cant you do it like every other day. one day training, one day resting?
Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 06/09/2010 - 08:50
Steven
This is a higher volume routine and it requires about a week of rest before performing it again.
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Posted Sat, 06/12/2010 - 09:33
Abaddon
squeezing it in about every 5 days in the week can be done, not to pick hairs. You could even do it monday and then again friday. But then take a full week off. Remember: the more the muscle is damaged, the stronger it heals!
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Posted Mon, 12/10/2012 - 10:27
Craig heitmeier
Your muscles take a long time to recovery and u should just do a workout with ur main muscle groups once a week to isolate and give them time to recover
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Posted Sat, 06/12/2010 - 09:29
Abaddon
this is exactly the same workout I've been doing for my chest, only I used decline barbell bench press and a set of pushups for warmup. It served me very well. And I'm doing exactly the same now, only without the pec-dec as I am home-gyming. Excellent recommendations, but you HAVE to push those reps out to 10 - 12, and maybe add a set after a couple of months.
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Posted Sun, 06/13/2010 - 04:01
Andrew Brown
What if a a boy wants to try this, And has the body of a 17 or 16 yr old? Would you still recomend trying this?
Steven's picture
Posted Sun, 06/13/2010 - 17:42
Steven
I would recommend this approach for an absolute beginner. Here are some recommended beginner workouts: http://www.muscleandstrength.com/workouts/beginner.html
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Posted Sat, 06/19/2010 - 16:46
Paul Singh
my lower chest is really under developed should i do decline bench
Steven's picture
Posted Sat, 06/19/2010 - 20:37
Steven
Hi Paul, Either dips or decline bench press could be inserted instead in incline presses if the lower chest is of concern.
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Posted Mon, 06/21/2010 - 15:10
Paul Singh
my current chest work out is 4 sets of bench press 4 sets of incline Dumbbell bench press 3 sets of decline bench press with decline flys as superset 3 sets of dumbbell pullover and 3 sets of chest dips as superset 3 sets of normal flys 3 sets of cross over I do this twice a week is it too much ? also are different parts of the chest worked with incline, normal, and decline flys?
Steven's picture
Posted Mon, 06/21/2010 - 15:19
Steven
Hi Paul, That's definitely too much volume. I would focus on 9-12 sets for chest each week, and really push yourself on every set. Try for more reps and weight, and never waste a set. And yes, different areas of the chest are stressed during different exercises variations.
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Posted Mon, 06/21/2010 - 15:45
Paul Singh
which workout would be more beneficial flat bench flys, incline flys, decline flys, pec dec, or cable cross over
Steven's picture
Posted Mon, 06/21/2010 - 16:17
Steven
Hi Paul, They are all about the same. I would use the exercise you prefer.
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Posted Mon, 06/21/2010 - 16:32
Paul Singh
are pullovers a good replacement for chest dips

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