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[WOTM, 09/2013] Ignite Chest, Shoulder & Back Growth With The Bulletproof, Adamantine Upper Body Workout

The Bulletproof, Adamantine Upper Body Workout, upper body workout, upper body workout plans, upper body workout routine, chest workout plans, chest workout routine, chest workouts

September’s WOTM — The Bulletproof, Adamantine Upper Body Workout — focuses on full-blown upper body fortification. It isolates the upper half and dips into a high-powered arsenal of hefty, uber-effective chest, shoulder, and back movements to ignite incendiary muscle growth.

By the end you’ll be dripping with hard-earned muscle juice, primed and prepped to provoke increases in muscle mass, all while simultaneously chipping away at devious body fat sitting on the surface.

And it gets better — the workout emphasizes major strength gains. You’ll develop enough brute strength and explosive power to swing oak trees and lift Mack trucks, ultimately leaving you with a chiseled, striated, tank-life upper body that would make Atlas proud.

Two things before diving in face first and basking in the glory of a refurbished top half:

  • Complete The Bulletproof, Adamantine Upper Body Workout 2-3x per week, with 2 days in between each upper body workout.
  • I highly recommend that you complement your upper body workouts with A) ab/core and B) leg/lower body workouts to build an elite, balanced physique from head-to-toe.


The Bulletproof, Adamantine Upper Body Workout

*Click each applicable exercise name for a video demo.


1. WARM-UP — Push Ups

Protocol: 1 set, 10-20 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Chest, Triceps

Bang out 10-20 push ups as a warm-up set.



2. SUPERSET Flat Dumbbell Chest Press + Flat Dumbbell Flies

Protocol: 3 sets, 12 reps per exercise

Target Muscle(s): Chest, Triceps

Complete 12 reps of the flat dumbbell chest press immediately followed by 12 dumbbell flies back-to-back in superset fashion; drop down to lighter dumbbells for each set of flies.

For both exercises lower your arms until they’re slightly below chest height.

 Flat Dumbbell Chest Press & Flat Dumbbell Flies


3. SUPERSET  Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press  + Lateral Raises

Protocol: 3 sets, 12 reps per exercise

Target Muscle(s): Shoulders, Medial Deltoids

1. Complete 12 reps of the seated dumbbell shoulder press. Maintain a tight core, draw your shoulders back, and lower your arms until they’re slightly below parallel.

2. Immediately grab a lighter set of dumbbells and complete 12 lateral raises. Keep your arms straight and raise the dumbbells out to the side; it should form a big “T” with your body.

Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press & Lateral Raise Superset

4. Horizontal Seated Cable Row

Protocol: 2 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Back, Biceps

Set up a low cable station with a narrow “V” attachment.

Draw your shoulders back, brace your core, and draw the handle directly underneath your chest; pull primarily with your back — NOT your arms — and try not to rely on momentum.

Hold the contraction for 1s and release back out.

Horizontal Seated Cable Row


5. Dumbbell Clean & Press

Protocol: 3 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Shoulders, Core

Grab two dumbbells and lower into a half squat position (1). Powerfully ascend, pull the dumbbells up and flip them over on top of your shoulders (2), and press the weights directly overhead (3).

Complete all 3 movements in 1 fluid motion and return to the bottom.

Dumbbell Clean & Press


6. Incline Dumbbell Chest Press

Protocol: 2 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Upper Chest, Triceps

Set the bench at a 45° angle.

Lower the weights down along the top half of your chest; they should reach about chin height.

Powerfully press up and squeeze the top half of your chest for 1s before lowering.

Incline Dumbbell Chest Press


7. Pull Ups OR Lat Pull-Downs

Protocol: 2 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Back, Lats

Complete 12 reps of either pull ups OR lat pull-downs, depending on level of fitness. If you’re able to do 12+ pull ups, make that your go-to exercise.

For both exercises — draw your shoulders back and keep your core tight; your hands should rest on the bar slightly wider than shoulder-width.

For lat pull-downs — contract your back and pull the bar in FRONT of your face down to the top of your chest.

Pull Ups or Lat Pull-Downs


8. Upright Rows

Protocol: 2 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Shoulders, Traps, Front Deltoids

Hold a barbell in front of your thighs slightly narrower than shoulder-width (1).

Brace your core, draw back your shoulders and puff out your chest, and powerfully pull the barbell up to neck height (2) — keep your elbows flared higher than bar-height. Hold at the top for 1s and lower slowly.

Upright Rows


9. Dips

Protocol: 2 sets, 12 reps

Primary Muscle(s): Triceps, Chest

Complete 2 sets dips — lean forward slightly to emphasize the chest. Lower until your arms are slightly below parallel.

If regular dips are too difficult, replace them with bench dips.



10. The Push Up Burnout Circuit

Protocol: 1 set

Primary Muscle(s): Triceps, Chest

Finish up with one full round of The Push Up Burnout Circuit — full instructions available here. 

Lean It UP The Push Up Burnout Circuit


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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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