Building a big & powerful chest can be a challenge if you are focusing on the wrong exercises and reps.
In this article, we are going to cover the best chest workout that will help you build a thick, strong set of pecs while also increasing your strength & power.
The Major Problems With Your Current Chest Workout
The main problem with almost every chest workout routine is that it only focuses on the middle portion of the chest with basic exercises like the barbell bench press and dumbbell fly.
An impressive chest has developed every section of the pectorals – most importantly the upper chest (pectoralis major).
Developing a chiseled upper chest will set you apart with your physique and will give people the illusion that your chest is bigger than it really is.
It will make you look awesome in V-neck’s, and also put your bench press numbers through the roof – a double win!
Another problem is that some people are under the impression that big chests are built with pec flys, machines, and high reps: not the case. In this article we will discuss what actually works.
Developing The Upper Chest for Maximum Aesthetics & Strength
Having a really well developed chest starts with your mindset to training. Most lifters simply think that they want a “big chest”, but to get a full chest you have to develop each section of your pectorals.
This is the difference between having an aesthetic physique and not.
If your lower chest is too big and you have a very undeveloped upper chest, it may give off the illusion that you have “man boobs” instead of chiseled pectoral muscles.
This image illustrates the different areas of the chest that must be developed to achieve a full look:
Developing both pec major and pec minor will have a dramatic effect on aesthetics & strength. Take a strategic approach to chest training for maximum development of all sections.
First, lets cover the forgotten but important chest muscle!
The Forgotten Chest Muscle
Your upper chest is actually a separate muscle called the “clavicular pectoralis.” The best chest workouts put just as much emphasis on this section of the chest as the middle to lower portions. This is what creates aesthetics!
The tricky part about having a well-developed chest is that it takes much longer to build the clavicular pectoralis.
In fact – if you don’t know what you’re doing you could spend 10 plus years in the gym and never develop the clavicular pectoralis.
So, do you want to have the ultimate aesthetic chest with the strength to back it up? Let’s first dive into the 3 rules of training that you MUST follow to achieve this.
Ultimate Chest Development Laws & Best Chest Exercise Selections
HEAVY PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD
Since your pectorals are a large muscle group you need to train them with heavy resistance and progressive overload.
What this means is that you have to lift heavy in the 3-8-rep range for the majority of your chest exercises.
Despite what the guru’s and bodybuilding magazines say, this is how you build mass.
The best exercises include the dumbbell bench press, barbell bench press, dumbbell incline bench press, and the barbell incline bench press.
If you don’t put a heavy load on your pecs, you will not stimulate maximum hypertrophy and growth.
It’s no secret that you absolutely have to be bench pressing and performing the chest related compound movements close to your 1 rep max.
A good rule of thumb to follow is that you should make sure that 80 percent of your compound sets are done at 70-80+ percent of your 1 rep max.
So if your bench press max is 300 lbs (more on increasing your bench press here), you will want to make sure you are doing sets of 210-240 lbs at minimum.
“Repping out” and chasing the “pump” in the 15-20 rep range may feel good, but the pump is short lived, and it won’t translate into maximal muscle growth.
Save it for the end of your workout and focus most of your efforts on training heavy.
If you’ve spent years solely chasing the pump, you will experience a serious surge in gains by switching to this training methodology.
BIG BASIC LIFTS = AESTHETICS, STRENGTH, POWER.
The biggest mistake that many people make with their chest workouts is that they don’t focus on big, compound lifts.
How many of your chest days involve pec dec machines & 100’s of pec flyes?
Here’s the truth: these exercises are most effective at the end of your workout to add in some extra volume. They should never be the core focus of your chest day.
You will never build thick muscle and strength with the pec dec machine.
This is the problem with so many training routines, stick with the proven basic lifts that work.
If you want your chest to grow, stick with the big three: barbell & dumbbell bench press, barbell & dumbell incline press, heavy dips.
No machines, no pec decs, at least not until you’ve put in the work on the heavy presses.
Sorry guys, this is the key to full chest development. Here is why we skip out on decline bench presses.
FULL CHEST DEVELOPMENT
The most important rule to having a fully developed chest is that you must work the upper chest just as much as your lower chest.
Since your upper chest muscles are the most stubborn for growth they will need just as much attention.
Not to mention, if your bench press has been plateaued for a while, hitting your upper chest hard may be exactly what you need to break through it.
Most people focus 90-95% of their chest workout on the lower-mid pectoral muscle development without even knowing it. It should actually be closer to 50-50.
The best chest workouts will grow the upper and lower sections equally.
Chest Workout of Perfection Routine
Barbell Bench Press
Sets: 4, Reps: 5-8, Rest Time: 90-180 Seconds
Dumbbell Incline Press
Sets: 4, Reps: 8-12, Rest Time: 90 Seconds
Barbell Incline Bench Press
Sets: 4, Reps: 6-10, Rest Time: 90 Seconds
Weighted Dips (Chest Version)
Sets: 4, Reps: 8-12, Rest Time: 2 Minutes
Flat Dumbbell Press
Sets: 4, Reps: 10-12, Rest Time: 1 Minute
That’s it! No drop-sets, super-sets, tri-sets, pre-exhaustion sets, or anything like that. Just proven exercises that actually build muscle. Sure, these training principles can be added in for increased intensity every so often, but they should never be a primary focus.
Don’t go to failure every set, leave 2-3 reps in the tank, save your max effort set for the last set of each exercise.
So for example if you can bench press 225 for 5 reps, do 205-210 for 4 sets of 5, then 225 for your last set of 5.
Adding Fuel to The Fire: Supplementation.
If you really want to take your training to the next level, you need to prime your body with clinically-dosed supplements that enable you to train harder and recover faster.
99% of supplements on the market today are a complete joke, literally useless, and some are even counter productive.
Until we launched Jacked Factory, scientifically-dosed supplements simply weren’t available.
Even worse, most supplements used and still use ‘proprietary blends’ to mask their under-dosed, useless formulas.
Scientifically-Dosed simply means that we use ingredients backed by science and dose our products in line with what the research indicates to be an effective dose.
For example, research indicates that 8 grams of citrulline malate boosts workout performance, so we give you 8 full grams per serving. Most companies will only give you 500mg or 1g, and bank on you being ignorant about the under-dosing.
Our flagship pre-workout ALTIUS (latin for ‘higher’) is fully clinically-dosed and will give you an instant surge of clean energy, a clear mental focus, and endless endurance in the gym.
You will notice an increase in strength, pumps, and the ability to maintain peak performance deep into your training session when you would otherwise be fading.
Increased workout performance and volume over time = more gains.
Unlike most “concentrated” pre-workouts that rely solely on stimulants, ALTIUS contains a massive 20.33 gram scoop, without any fillers, and clinical-doses of the most proven efficacious workout performance enhancing ingredients such as Citrulline Malate, Betaine, Beta-Alanine, Creatine Monohydrate, Alpha-GPC, and Caffeine.
It is also naturally sweetened and flavored while still maintaining a refreshing, phenomenal taste.
Post-Workout Recovering & Rebuilding
Here’s the thing: building muscle and strength simply comes down to: consistent training, and consistent eating + sleep + supplementation to recover and rebuild.
Consistently over time, that’s it.
POWERBUILD is the simplest, but most effective supplement ever (no exaggeration). It’s simply the most stacked build + recovery formula available.
We give you a full dose of each proven muscle-building, recovery-enhancing, and strength-building ingredient.
All that you have to do is take 1 scoop intra-workout or post-workout for optimal results.
Adding weight to the bar, increasing the total amount of volume per workout, and re-building with optimal nutrition and supplementation – That’s the winning formula, there’s no secrets.
Adding POWERBUILD to your regimen will simply help you recover faster, get stronger, build more muscle, and boost protein synthesis immediately following your workout.
It’s a competitive advantage to be able to train longer, harder, stronger, and more often.
Over time, this will increase your results exponentially compared to if you didn’t use it.
POWERBUILD is THE most complete muscle building & recovery supplement on the market, and no other product offers anything remotely close to this powerhouse formula.
In fact, we recommend that you compare the label to your current post-workout or any other option on the market to see the difference.
Follow us on social media for giveaways, motivation, & more:
Interested in more of our top workout guides to up your training? Check these out:best chest workout, chest exercises, chest workout, chest workouts, pecs
About the author