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[WOTM, 07/2014] Build A Tank-Like Upper Body With The Chiseled Chest + Triceps Workout

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Get chiseling. We’re about to sculpt a wide, striated, dense chest of the gods.

Using a circuit of high-powered dumbbell exercises, July’s WOTMThe Chiseled Chest + Triceps Workout—works vigorously to exploit extended range of motion, upper body stabilization, and cranked up intensity to galvanize razor sharp chest growth. Just like a spry Michelangelo, you’ve got all of the tools laid out to chip away, dig deep, and carve out MASSIVE definition.

Follow the workout consistently and results include (but aren’t limited to):

  • A full, well-rounded chest (including both the pectoralis major and minor)
  • Pronounced cuts and separation down the center midline (above the sternum)
  • Significant width to accentuate the outer and lower pecs
  • Striations across the upper chest, which creates gorgeous definition along the collarbone and front deltoids
  • Strong, well-developed, cut-up triceps
  • Improved upper body strength and endurance

And if you’ve been banging away at your chest for a while, benching yourself into oblivion with minimal results to show, July’s WOTM is a stark contrast from other mundane chest routines.

At the core, it leverages drop sets and super sets to confuse the muscles, tear up and burn out the region, and reinvigorate fresh new growth (new stimuli + challenge = growth). Once your chest is already fatigued, pumped with lactic acid, and burning like a raging bonfire, moves like flies, dips, and pullovers swoop in to STRETCH the musculature and create pronounced definition along the boundaries.

And because it’s dumbbell-centric, single arm stability and power are paramount. That puts tremendous pressure on the deeper stabilizers, which effectively draws out smaller muscles and builds the upper body from the inside out.

Beyond the chest, it SMASHES the triceps—which get blasted by everything, including various isolation movements—and secondarily hits the shoulders, back, and core.

Here comes the BURN. Brace yourself.


The Chiseled Chest + Triceps Workout


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Image: Bodybuilding.com

Do The Chiseled Chest + Triceps Workout 2x per week, supplemented with abs, legs, shoulders, and back training. HIIT, too. Ideally, this should be one tiny part of a larger fitness routine — dive into our various workout plans to fill up an entire workout schedule.

  • Leave at least 2 days before repeating the workout again.
  • Rest 1 minute in between sets. For drop sets, rest should be a little bit longer.

*Click on each applicable exercise name for a full pop-out video demo. A printable recap is available here.

 

 

1. DROP SET — Dumbbell Chest Press  


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Image: Bodybuilding.com

How To:


Protocol: 4 drop sets — 12 reps + 12 reps + 12 reps

Target Muscle(s): Chest, Triceps

If you’ve never done a drop set, here’s how it works. They’re evil, but oh-so-potent.

  • Complete 3 sets of the Dumbbell Chest Press—without rest—decreasing the weight used in each subsequent set. Drop the weight by roughly 25% from set-to-set.
  • For example, you could do 12 reps with 60 pounds, 12 reps with 45 pounds, and then 12 reps with 30 pounds in a row. Don’t worry if you fatigue and can’t bang out a full 12 reps on sets #2 and #3. Push through the burn and do as many as possible.

We’re doing FOUR total drop sets.

 

 

2. SUPERSET — Dumbbell Pullovers Dumbbell Chest Flies


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How To:


Protocol: 3 sets, 12 reps + 12 reps

Target Muscle(s): Chest, Lats

  • Complete 12 reps of the Dumbbell Pullover. Lie perpendicular across a flat bench with a dumbbell directly over your chest. Keep your arms extended and slowly lower the weight behind your head.
  • Contract your lats and lower chest and pull the dumbbell back up to start. Thrust your hips up so that your body is flat. Your abs should be tight the entire time.
  • Immediately, without rest, grab a second set of dumbbells and do 12 Dumbbell Chest Flies. Squeeze your chest at the top.

 

 

3. Lying Triceps Extensions


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Image: Bodybuilding.com 

How To:


Protocol: 2 sets — 15 reps

Target Muscle(s): Triceps

  • Lie down on a flat bench and raise 2 dumbbells straight above your chest. Maintain a tight core.
  • Keep the lower part of your arms straight and locked, hinge at your elbows, and slowly lower the dumbbells down beside your head. DO NOT lower them on top of your face. Teeth are important. Also, keep your elbows tucked in — don’t flare them out.
  • Powerfully contract your triceps and shoot the dumbbells back up to starting position.
  • Repeat for 15 total reps.

 

 

4. SUPERSET — 1-Arm Incline Press  Incline Flies


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How To:


Protocol: 3 sets — 10 reps per arm + 12 reps

Target Muscle(s): Upper Chest, Triceps

  • Sit on an incline bench. Complete 10 reps of the 1-Arm Incline Press per side. Keep your core tight and resist the pull to lean to one side. Lower the dumbbell all the way down to chest height.
  • Immediately do 12 Incline Flies without rest. Lower until your triceps are parallel with the ground and SQUEEZE your chest at the top of the movement.

 

 

5. Dips


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How To:


Protocol: 3 sets — 15 reps

Target Muscle(s): Triceps, Chest

  • Set-up on parallel bars. Lean forward slightly and slowly lower your body until your triceps are parallel with the ground.
  • Powerfully contract your triceps + chest and press all the way up. SQUEEZE at the top.
  • Repeat for 15 total reps. If you’re strong enough, hold a dumbbell between your feet — you’ll crank up the difficulty and put more pressure on your chest/triceps.
  • If regular dips are too hard, do bench dips.

 

 

6. Overhead Triceps Extensions


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How To:


Protocol: 3 sets — 15 reps

Target Muscle(s): Triceps, Chest

  • Sit down on a flat bench and hold a dumbbell straight up above your head.
  • Keep your core tight, back straight, and the lower part of your arms stationary. Slowly hinge at your elbows and lower the weight behind your head. Your forearms should be slightly further than parallel with the ground. Make sure that your elbows stay tucked in tight.
  • Powerfully contract your triceps and press the dumbbell straight overhead.
  • Repeat for 15 reps.

 

 

7. Push Ups


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How To:


Protocol: 1 set — FAILURE

Target Muscle(s): Chest, Triceps

  • BURNOUT SET! Do as many push ups as possible in a row. Keep your shoulders back, your core tight, and your back straight — don’t let your hips sag.

You’re finished as soon as your body collapses.

 


Page: 1 | 2 (Printable Recap)


 

Bryan DiSanto

Bryan DiSanto

Founder & Editor-in-Chief at Lean It UP
ELLO ELLO I'm Bryan DiSanto. I'm the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Lean It UP, a CPT/CSN/Fitness Coach, Chef trained at Le Cordon Bleu – Paris, NYU graduate, ex-fat kid, and all-around fitness junkie.

I also contribute to Men's Health Magazine.

When I'm not working on my abs (or somebody else’s), whipping up avocado roses and avocado toast, or running a Tough Mudder, I'm probably yelling at a Carolina Panthers game somewhere.

Come be friends with me on Instagram (@BRYDISANTO) & Snapchat (BRYDISANTO).
Bryan DiSanto

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