Chest Exercises

The Best Workout to Hammer Your Chest

Overhauling your chest training is fruitless. Instead, try this workout with slight tweaks on traditional moves.

Barbell Bench Press
Per Bernal
Per Bernal
Duration 30 min.
Exercises 4-5
Equipment Yes

When it comes to pumping up your pecs, a mix of bench press and flye variations has been the go-to formula for the past 50 years. And we’re not about to mess with a good thing.

If you want to change things up, you can reorder the exercises or add a fourth and fifth movement to the routine.

This modernized version of the classic chest routine subs in a standard barbell bench press for the dumbbell bench press, adds a Hammer Strength incline press, swaps out cable flyes for pec deck flyes, and utilizes a few different set/rep schemes.

It’s slightly different from the tried-and-true formula, but overall it’s just more of a good thing.

Straight Up

Exercise 1

Incline Barbell Bench Press You'll need: Barbell, Bench How to
Incline Barbell Bench Press thumbnail
4 sets
8 reps
-- rest

Exercise 2

Dumbbell Press You'll need: Bench, Dumbbells How to
Dumbbell Bench Press thumbnail
4 sets
10 reps
-- rest

Exercise 3

Bodyweight Dip You'll need: Dip Station How to
Bodyweight Dip thumbnail
3 sets
To failure* reps
-- rest
*On your last set, do one rest-pause set; after reaching failure initially, rest 10 to 20 seconds and rep out to failure one more time.

Exercise 4

Cable Flye
Cable Flye thumbnail
3 sets
12* reps
-- rest
*On your last set, perform one dropset after reaching failure with the original weight.

Level Up

Exercise 1

Barbell Bench Press You'll need: Barbell, Bench How to
Barbell Bench Press thumbnail
2 sets
12, 6* reps
-- rest
Go light on the first warmup set for 12 reps, then add 20 to 30% more weight for the second warmup set.

Exercise 2

Barbell Bench Press You'll need: Barbell, Bench How to
Barbell Bench Press thumbnail
3 sets
5, 10, 15* reps
-- rest
Reverse pyramid; go considerably lighter on each set, starting with your estimated 6RM on the first set for 5 reps.

Exercise 3

Hammer Strength Incline Press How to
Hammer Strength Barbell Curl thumbnail
3 sets
10-15 reps
-- rest

Exercise 4

Pec Deck Flye How to
Pec Deck Flye thumbnail
3 sets
20 reps
-- rest

Exercise 5

Bodyweight Dip You'll need: Dip Station How to
Bodyweight Dip thumbnail
-- sets
30-50* reps
-- rest
Aim to complete in as few sets as possible. Complete 50 reps if advanced, 40 for intermediates, and 30 for beginners.
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