Don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s raining. That’s exactly what you are doing, with exception of a few asymmetrical freaks, if you are reading Muscle & Fitness and claim not to want a more robust, chiseled chest. It’s why you lift progressively heavier weights to continually place more tension on muscles and force them to gain strength and grow in size.

Other Factors

Man cannot live off of bread alone, just how the hypertrophy enthusiast wanting maximal chest development cannot live off of heavy weight alone. Bodybuilders do not lift as heavy as powerlifters yet display superior degrees of muscularity. How can this be?

Shrewd bodybuilders train an assortment of rep ranges and sometimes, to the dismay of the functional crowd, train for a “pump”. The pump has an important role in building maximum-developed muscles because it is caused by a build-up of metabolic byproducts that cause the cell to swell; cell swelling has been shown, by science, to help increase muscle growth. The pump should not be worshipped as the end-all of muscle hypertrophy, but it can’t be ignored as feel-good bro science, either.

The 3, 6, 9 Technique

There is no better physical feeling, at least that’s appropriate to discuss in this article, than a chest pump!

I am going to share a method I formulated and have used with the pros and every-day clients that desire to take their chest development to the chiseled, barrel level.

This method is for intermediate and advanced lifters, and if your pain tolerance is low you can always sweat to the oldies. Otherwise, be ready for some swollen chesticles!

Exercise Guidelines

1. Have a one to four board press available, for a refresher on boards please see the previous piece I covered on how to make boards.

2. Load the barbell on the bench press with 50% of your one-repetition max and load the chains to a weight you are capable of doing 15 flyes.

3. Now you are ready to go. With the prescribed weight, perform a bench press for three repetitions, and then rack the weight. Immediately grab the carabiners with chains attached and perform six flyes. Upon completion of flyes, do not drop the weight, immediately do nine presses. Now drop the weight and rest 20 seconds. 

4. For set two, everything is exactly the same; however, the bench press will be performed with one board on your chest. After resting 20 seconds, do the same thing for set three but for the bench press you will do it with two boards on your chest. Rest 20 seconds and begin set four doing the same thing with the exception of bench press you will place three boards on your chest. Rest 20 seconds and for the final set do the same thing but place four boards on your chest.

5. If you are unable to complete the flyes or chain presses, do not stop. Continue with partial reps.