Archive for the tag - chest workout

How to Get a Bigger Chest: 10 Tips.

People don't recognize me with my shirt on.

Because my pecs have become something of a Davey Wavey trademark, it’s no surprise that I get a number of emails about chest workouts. More specifically, most guys write asking for tips to increase their chest size. It’s a common goal and the game plan necessary to make it happen is fairly straightforward.

Here are 10 tips for getting a bigger chest.

  1. Bench press. Tried and true, there is no better exercise for building up your chest than the bench press. You can do bench press exercises with either dumbbells or a barbell – and each have their own advantage. With dumbbells, you’re able to work through a great range of motion. But with a barbell, you’re able to press heavier amounts of weight. Since heavier loads will result in bigger gains, I recommend using the barbell – though it’s fine to use either or both.
  2. Low reps, heavy weight. Doing a lower number of repetitions at a heavy weight is best suited for increases in size. I usually target 8 repetitions. On the last repetition, your muscles should feel fatigued. If you can do more than 12 repetitions without feeling fatigued, then the weight is definitely too light.
  3. Do at least four sets. It’s true that you get a ton of benefits from performing only one set, but if you’re looking for maximized results, the additional sets are important. I do four sets on the bench press, then four sets each on the incline and decline bench press.
  4. Only train your chest once or twice per week. Since I train different muscle groups each day, I usually only work my chest once per week. Sometimes twice. I don’t train my chest often, but when I do, it’s a quality workout and that’s what matters.
  5. Increase the amount of resistance or number of repetitions. If you did 6 repetitions at 180 pounds last week, try for 7 repetitions at the same weight this week. Or if you did 8 repetitions of 150 pounds last week, go for 7 or 8 repetitions at 160 pounds this week. You need to overload your muscles to increase their size.
  6. Keep a log. Because the exact number of repetitions and amount of resistance can be difficult to remember, bring a notebook and log your progress. When you go in for your next workout, you’ll know exactly where you were last week – and exactly where you want to be this week.
  7. Try drop sets. Once a month, really mix things up by doing a drop set or two. To perform a drop set, select an amount of resistance that will result in muscle failure after 8 – 12 reps. While you’ve reached relative failure, you haven’t reached absolute failure; quickly decrease the amount of weight by about 15% and continue. After 8 or so reps, you’ll hit failure again. Reduce the resistance by another 15% and continue. Keep going. It’s a great way to build size.
  8. Don’t overtrain. More isn’t better and your muscles need time to rebuild and recover. Don’t train your chest more than twice a week.
  9. Eat right. Ensure that you’re eating enough calories and getting the required amount of protein to support muscle growth.
  10. Keep good form. While the occasional cheat is acceptable, the majority of your bench presses should demonstrate proper technique. Most people cheat by not lowering the bar fully to their chest before pressing it back up. Ensure that you’re getting a full range of motion.

Building a bigger chest isn’t rocket science – but it does take a little know-how and some real effort and dedication. And if you have any other chest-building tips, share them in the comments below.

How To Get Davey Wavey’s Chest.

It shouldn't be about creating Davey's chest so much as it should be about building the best version of your own!

A lot of people send me emails asking about my chest and the exercises that I use to build and maintain it. While I’m happy to share my chest routine, I don’t think it should be about trying to emulate my chest. I think it should be about creating a stronger, healthier chest for yourself. It’s about building your best chest – not mine.

Having said that, most people are surprised to find out that my chest workout is only 35 minutes long – and that I perform it only once or twice a week. I’m a huge fan of effective and efficient workouts. None of us – unless you’re training for the Olympics – need to be spending hours and hours at the gym. And in many cases, longer workouts can actually be detrimental.

At any rate, my typical chest workout consists of four basic exercises:

  • 4 sets of 8 reps on the flat bench press @ 185 lbs
  • 4 sets of 8 reps on the incline bench press @ 145 lbs
  • 4 sets of 8 reps on the decline bench press @ 165 lbs
  • 4 sets of 8 reps of 45 lb dumbbell pec flies

I use free weights since I have access to a gym, but many people – especially beginners – will see great results even if they start with body weight exercises like push-ups. In other words, you’ll need to modify my routine to make it your own.

Beyond doing effective exercises with good form, it’s important to remember a few things when aiming to build a bigger chest:

  1. Fatigue on last rep. Whatever weight you currently use, you should be fatigued after the last repetition. If you aim for 8 reps like myself, and if you want bigger muscles, then you should be unable to perform a 9th rep. If you can do a 9th rep, then you need to add more weight.
  2. Progression. In order to build bigger chest muscles, progressing to heavier levels of resistance is absolutely necessary. As your muscles build, you’ll have to increase the amount of resistance to maintain muscle failure on the last rep. You muscles only grow if they are forced to do so – and so progression is a requirement.
  3. Fuel your body with proper nutrition. Ensure that you are getting both protein and carbs after your workout – and that you are meeting your daily requirement of protein. Moreover, proper nutrition will support a lean body mass to help increase muscular definition. Do your best to eat like a caveman.
  4. Time. Allow yourself some time; Rome wasn’t built in a day. And it takes serious time and dedication to transform your body. But a year from now, you’ll be glad that you started today.

There’s really no magic to it. A stronger and healthier chest is just a matter of effective exercises combined with a little fitness know-how.

Revealed: Davey Wavey’s Workout Routine.

Curious to know how I hit the gym? I don’t mind sharing my secrets ๐Ÿ˜›

First, keep in mind that our goals probably aren’t the same (I focus heavily on arms) – and neither are our bodies. Having said that, I divide my routine into four days. Each workout takes about 90 minutes – maybe a tad more. I exercise six days a week.

Day 1:

  • 3.75 miles on the treadmill @ 9.5 miles per hour. Takes about 30 minutes with warm-up and cool-down.
  • 20 minutes of abs (I switch between lower abs, obliques (side abs) and general core). Watch a 5-minute version of my ab workout.
  • 25 minutes of chest exercises: 4 sets on bench press; 4 sets on incline bench press; 4 sets on decline bench press; 4 sets on pec fly machine; 4 sets of pec fly with dumbbells; push-ups, if time.
  • 15 minutes of shoulder exercises: 4 sets each of 3 different shoulder cable exercises; 4 sets of shoulder press with dumbbells; 4 sets of shoulder rotation exercise.
  • 5 minutes on elliptical or stairmaster.

Day 2:

  • 15 minutes of sprinting on treadmill. I do 90 seconds at 7.7 miles per hour and then 60 seconds at 11.3 miles per hour. I repeat this cycle until my 15 minutes is complete. Takes about 20 – 25 minutes with warm-up and cool-down.
  • 20 minutes of abs (either lower abs, obliques (side abs) or general core).
  • 35 minutes of back exercises: 4 sets on lat pull down machine, 4 sets of dead lifts (occasionally), 4 sets on hyperextension machine with weights; 4 sets of barbell rows; 4 sets of t-bar rows (occasionally); 4 sets of reverse flies; 4 sets on back extension machine. I really tend to switch my back workouts up, by these are some of the main exercises that I use.
  • 10 minutes of forearm exercises: 4 sets each of various forearm cable exercises; 4 sets of dumbbell forearm curls.
  • 1-mile run (6.5 minutes) at 9.5 miles per hour.

Day 3:

  • 3.75 miles on the treadmill @ 9.5 miles per hour. Takes about 30 minutes with warm-up and cool-down.
  • 20 minutes of abs (either lower abs, obliques (side abs) or general core).
  • 25 minutes of leg exercises: 4 sets of squats; 4 sets of squat variations; 4 sets of calf raises; 4 sets each of various leg machines.
  • 15 minutes of triceps exercises: 4 sets of overhead triceps extensions; 4 sets of triceps dips; 4 sets of triceps pull-down on cable machine.
  • 5 minutes on elliptical or stairmaster.

Day 4:

  • 15 minutes of sprinting on treadmill. I do 90 seconds at 7.7 miles per hour and then 60 seconds at 11.3 miles per hour. I repeat this cycle until my 15 minutes is complete.
  • 20 minutes of abs (either lower abs, obliques (side abs) or general core).
  • 40 minutes of bicep exercises: 12 sets of various bicep curls and variations; 4 sets of bicep curls on cable machine; 4 sets of pull-ups; 4 sets of bicep curls with barbell.
  • 1-mile run (6.5 minutes) at 9.5 miles per hour.

The weight and number of reps in each exercise varies depending on my goals for that muscle group. I don’t want my tits to get any larger, so I focus on lower weights and higher repetitions. I am building my back muscles, on the other hand, so I do fewer reps with heavier weights.

Keep in mind that I’ve been working out for more than a decade. I certainly wouldn’t recommend trying my routine if you’re just starting out. Work up to it. Moreover, it may not be realistic for you. I’m a personal trainer – this is what I do. Fitness is a huge part of my life.

Let me know what you think in the comments below – I’m always happy to field your questions.

17 Push-up Variations. [Video]

For the next three weeks, I’m taking a break from civilized life by living in the wilds of New Hampshire. And though I’ve been here less than 24-hours, I’ve already secured a vacation gym. Obsessions! Priorities!

Despite being in the middle of nowhere, I was able to find a small gym only 10 minutes from my treehouse (yes, I’m living in a treehouse). I had my first workout this morning, and I was surprised to discover that my new gym lacks a bench press. In fact, the gym has no equipment with barbells – and only a small selection of dumbbells.

What’s a fitness enthusiast to do? Fear not.

I’m accustomed to limited gym equipment. In fact, my university gym only had a handful of machines and treadmills – there was not a dumbbell, free weight or barbell to be found. And I survived thrived for 4 wonderful years.

As it turns out, unless you want to look like Arnold, you really don’t need a bunch of fancy equipment to stay healthy and fit. You may need a little innovation and creativity – but don’t let a lack of equipment hold you back. For the majority of Americans that don’t have a gym membership, this news is good news. But the “no gym? no problem!” reality also eliminates a series of powerful excuses:

  • I’m not going to workout because I don’t belong to a gym.
  • I’m not going to get in shape because there are no gyms nearby.
  • I’m not going to exercise because I can’t afford a gym.

As Wayne Dyer likes to say, “Excuses begone!” But I digress.

At any rate, here are 17 push-up variations for a crazy chest workout that requires no equipment or supplies:

Give these 17 variations a try and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Davey Wavey Spills the Beans: Chest Workout Secrets. [Video]

Okay – so it’s one of the most common questions that I get: “Davey Wavey, what do you do for your chest workout?” I decided it would be easiest to answer that question once and for all through a post on my Davey Wavey Fitness YouTube channel: