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Ronnie Coleman’s Routines for a Champion’s Chest

Take a glimpse into what it takes to get a champ's chest from the olympia legend himself.

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Bodybuilder Ronnie Coleman working out his chest with with a decline barbell press
Kevin Horton
Bodybuilder Ronnie Coleman working out his chest with with a decline barbell press
Kevin Horton

Ronnie Coleman, the eight-time Mr. Olympia, set the standard for freaky size and conditioning that, in all likelihood, won’t be equaled anytime soon, let alone surpassed for the foreseeable future. His pecs outsized the rest of the competition’s, and, if not for his equally preposterous back, he would surely have toppled over face-first from their immense weight.

Unlike most of his generation, he trained chest twice weekly, devoting the first workout to barbells and the second to dumbbells. Coleman preferred free-weight pressing movements with heavy weights for eight to 12 reps.

NOTE: Each workout was performed once per week, three days apart.

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Routine

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Ronnie Coleman's Chest Routine

Workout A

Exercise
Equipment
Sets
Reps
Rest
Exercise 1 of 8

Barbell Bench Press

Equipment
Barbell, Bench
Sets
5
Reps
8-12
Rest
--
Equipment
Barbell, Bench
Sets
3
Reps
8-12
Rest
--
Equipment
Barbell, Bench
Sets
3
Reps
8-12
Rest
--

Ronnie Coleman's Chest Routine

Workout B

Exercise
Equipment
Sets
Reps
Rest
Exercise 5 of 8

Dumbbell Bench Press

Equipment
Bench, Dumbbells
Sets
4
Reps
10-12
Rest
--
Equipment
Bench
Sets
4
Reps
10-12
Rest
--
Equipment
Bench, Dumbbells
Sets
5
Reps
10-12
Rest
--
Exercise 8 of 8

Incline Dumbbell Flye

Equipment
Bench, Dumbbells
Sets
3
Reps
10-12
Rest
--
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