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
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
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.

397 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Sun, 03/29/2015 - 23:44

Will this hit my whole chest ?
Everytime i am done with chest i dont feel satisfied i only feel the dips

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Posted Mon, 06/01/2015 - 11:36

This is probably because of your form. Make sure you have a good when working out your chest and to not use your front delts more than your chest

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Posted Tue, 03/17/2015 - 18:10
Sam Durfee

So for the compound workouts, about how many reps should I be doing for each set?

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Posted Wed, 02/04/2015 - 21:27

I cant seem to build my inner chest to make my chest look like one muscle. What do I need to do to build my inner chest?

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Posted Sun, 06/15/2014 - 17:58

Do you have a muscle strength burn for a a chest workout

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Posted Mon, 02/03/2014 - 17:29
Ray parga

My left side of my chest is bigger how do I fix that

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Posted Mon, 01/13/2014 - 09:20

how do i grow my delt size??

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Posted Wed, 12/04/2013 - 09:01

this routine sounds great do you have a high intensity routine for back and leg training?

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Posted Wed, 10/23/2013 - 22:12

"When you can perform 25 reps for all 5 sets, add weight."...do you mean 25 reps each x 5 sets? or 5 sets equalling 25 reps which would be 5 reps x 5 sets?

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Posted Wed, 10/16/2013 - 13:17

Can i use this chest workout program for 1 year training. Or I have to do something different after 1 month ? Thank you

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Posted Wed, 10/16/2013 - 13:14

Can i use this chest program for 1 year . Or must I do something else or different after 1 months of doing this program ?

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Posted Thu, 07/18/2013 - 06:39

G'day mate!
With this workout stated aboe ,what does this mean?
''When you can perform 25 reps for all 5 sets, add weight.''

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Posted Tue, 07/16/2013 - 20:20

Where it says yo add weight after you can reach 25 reps for all 5 sets, does thisean a total of 25 pr 25 for each set?

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Posted Sun, 07/07/2013 - 02:20

Solid workout thanks m&s

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Posted Mon, 03/11/2013 - 10:52

tried it this morning. excellent workout. had to push myself with the short rest periods during the bench press sets.

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Posted Mon, 02/11/2013 - 23:36

would I still see results if I moved up in weight after 50 reps VS 25 reps?

Joey's picture
Posted Thu, 02/14/2013 - 13:01

Yes, if you continually focus on progressing. Personally, I'd up the weight after hitting the 25 reps for your compound movements.

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Posted Fri, 02/08/2013 - 03:38
Nick Rivera

I do
cable crossover 3 set 10 rep
Cable fly 3 set 10-8 reps
Incline bench 3 set 10-8 reps
Dips 3 set 6-10 rep
Bench flys 3 sets 10 rep
Is this to much

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Posted Mon, 01/07/2013 - 07:14

can you clarify when you say "when you can perform 25 reps for all 5 sets, add weight." Isn't the idea to always complete 25 reps each week? Even if I do 5 sets of 8, 7, 4, 3, 3 reps. Does that mean each week I'll increase weight? Are you not able to complete 25 reps total due to total failure let say after 4 sets. If yes is this because of the strict 45 sec rest period? Thanks

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Posted Thu, 01/03/2013 - 15:28

You may have answered this already, but if you are shooting for a starting bench weight that gives you b/t 8-12 reps before failure, then why wait to hit 25 reps per set before increasing weight?

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Posted Thu, 11/29/2012 - 13:08

i have a hint of moobs...so i train on my chest everyday...i do flat incline and decline dumbbell press ; flat dumbbell flyes and pull overs....will these help??and how long will it take for me to get rid of the fat in my chest area??

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Posted Mon, 11/26/2012 - 21:31

I want my chest to get bigger how many reps do i do on each set??

mnsjason's picture
Posted Thu, 11/29/2012 - 13:12

8-10 reps

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Posted Sat, 10/13/2012 - 16:16

Rest-pause 45 what exactly are you doing

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Posted Thu, 10/11/2012 - 10:29

Hey Steve,

I'm a beginner and I'm currently doing a workout based on Dougs 4 Day Split. I want to work my chest a bit harder, and want to adopt the principles from this workout into my current one, but I'm working from home and don't have the machines; I have an adjustable bench, a straight bar, a curly bar, dumbbells and a heap of weight though. Could you suggest a chest routine that replaces the machine based exercises in this workout with ones I could do at home?


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Posted Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:29

Hey Steve,
Im just wondering is it ok to do this once a week, followed by full body exercises 3 days, with a total of four days a week. And for push pull, after I do bench press, what exercise would u prefer? And what days should I do them on, chest blast being Sunday. Thx...

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Posted Mon, 07/02/2012 - 20:42

Is it worth doing a bench press routine where I can only lift the weight 3-4 reps for 3 sets? After two warm up sets.

Based on this routine the 25 reps would probably be a warm up weight. I want to try it

I'm not getting much result from my current "bro split"

No spot-



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Posted Tue, 05/29/2012 - 22:46

Do they need to be these exercises or can i do different compound and isolation exercises? Should i still start with a two set of ten push ups like i have been doing?

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Posted Sun, 05/27/2012 - 12:04

I find my chest is growing to a good size however i find it difficult to shape and tone the lower part of my chest? any good exercises that will show results similar to the top par of my chest?

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Posted Tue, 05/22/2012 - 19:19

Hey man!
Im want to traing my lower-outer part of my chest, thats seems to be my weak part on the chest!! Which exercice could I do to add to these workout to achive my goal?

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Posted Mon, 05/14/2012 - 21:38

From what I see in the presentation, it seems that one compound is in alternation with an isolation one. Is it like that that the program should be followed? Would I lose some benefit by doing the 2 compound exercises first, then the 2 isolation exercises? (or isolation first, coumpounds last, as in a sort of pre-exhaust.

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Posted Mon, 05/07/2012 - 17:47
c dogg

hey steve you seem to know alot maybe we can talk i need some of your exportice!!

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Posted Wed, 05/02/2012 - 17:27
Big Moot

Im try to flatten my chest I do tons of push up

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Posted Wed, 05/02/2012 - 12:30

Hi steve,
can you give me a program from day 1 to day 7? I want to improve my shoulder, triceps, biceps, chest, back, and abs.
Im only 55kgs. Should i eat more to have bigger muscles?

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Posted Wed, 05/02/2012 - 12:18

Hi steve,
can you give me a program from day 1 to day 7?
I want to improve my shoulder, triceps, biceps, chest, back and abs.
Im only 55kilos, how can i get bigger muscles? Should i eat more?
Thanks, waiting for your reply..

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Posted Wed, 04/25/2012 - 11:32

ok, I've been doing this workout for 3 weeks now and I do see some improvement in my chest, but at the end of it my arms are killing me. What am I doing wrong?

Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 04/25/2012 - 12:54

Nothing. The triceps are involved with pressing movements, but the chest is still getting a good workout.

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Posted Mon, 04/23/2012 - 13:50

Im doing The Grind: A Full Body Strength Workout and am wondering if I were to start the chest blaster is there anything I should do different for the Grind? Replace bench press with the blaster?

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Posted Sun, 04/22/2012 - 05:52
Deelan Metalcøre

Hi..i weight 50 kg short man my body is dry full of defination however want to grow mass everywhere..wat should i do..i d'ont want product and i push 4 my age a lot leg press 250 kg,bench press 90 kg squats 115 kg

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Posted Tue, 04/03/2012 - 10:30

i do this type of work out alomst twice a week. is that good for you and whats good for building mass? im strong but have no real size!

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Posted Tue, 03/27/2012 - 17:25

Steve can I do shoulder and chest workout the same day and can i do them the day after biceps and triceps

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Posted Wed, 03/21/2012 - 16:55

dumbbell press-3sets
bent arm pullover-3sets
dips-3sets as warm up

Tuesday: Inclined press: 4sets
Inclined press(dumbbell): 3sets
Inclined fly-3sets
Smith machine-3sets
dumbbell pullover-3sets
and all the other days are off except for Thursday where I do some workout for other parts of my body. My main concern is chest as it is quite underdeveloped in comparison to overall body parts. Is that workout schedule fine or do I need to make the changes.......thanxs.

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Posted Thu, 03/15/2012 - 10:54
santana jones

i want to make my shoulder wide ang chest bigger

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Posted Sat, 03/10/2012 - 17:27

Is there a minimum or maximum rep on each of the compound and concentration? Also, is it 45 sec break in between all sets all the way through the routine?

Steven's picture
Posted Wed, 03/14/2012 - 15:00

No minimum or maximum. As long as you follow the progression scheme the min/max are nothing to worry about.

Also, the 45 seconds rest are only for the exercises listed.

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Posted Mon, 03/05/2012 - 13:21
scotty p

How often per week should u perform this workout?

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Posted Mon, 02/20/2012 - 16:19

Hey Steve. I see you have several "blaster" routines for different body parts. Do you have an optimal split for all of them? Thanks.

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Posted Wed, 02/08/2012 - 13:12

I did this workout once, it was the weakest workout i have ever done.

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Posted Sat, 02/04/2012 - 18:20

on compound workout u suggest 8-12 reps to one shy failure 5 sets, then u mention to add weight when u can complete 25 reps for all sets, where does the 25 reps come into play w/ routine?

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Posted Sun, 01/29/2012 - 23:26

Hi steve
Is there any training prog. which can actually help me to increase my height.
I m 22yrs & my ht. is jst 5'3".