Simply doing a few different chest exercises whenever you feel it’s time to work out your chest isn’t likely to give the maximum workout results most people are looking for. Taking a few things into consideration can help you find or design a Chest workout that’s more likely to lead to added inches of muscle.
Opt Mainly for Compound Exercises
Compound exercises work more than one muscle at a time, making them a more effective use of time and energy. This doesn’t mean that isolation lifts that work just one muscle need to be avoided, just that they shouldn’t be the only type of exercise performed. It’s best to start off with the compound lifts and leave the isolation lifts for later on in the process.
Don’t Forget to Rest
In order to increase muscle mass, it’s important to rest the chest muscles in between workouts. Don’t work the same muscles two days in a row. During the workout, the muscles get broken down, and the rest day gives them a chance to repair themselves and increase in size. Not allowing time for the muscles to recover can cause damage to the body over time and will actually limit the overall amount of increase in muscle as time goes on.
Use Fewer Reps and Heavier Weights
For increasing muscle size, it’s better to use heavier weights and lift them fewer times. To figure out how much weight to use at the beginning, determine the maximum amount of weight you can lift for one rep for each exercise. Then use 70 percent of this amount, working up to 80 percent as the muscles get stronger. Vary the number of reps in each set so the body doesn’t know what to expect rather than simply doing 15 reps of each exercise per set. Perhaps do 12 reps the first set, then 10 the next, then 8 the next.
Increase Weight Over Time
As the muscles get stronger, it’s necessary to use heavier weights. Every couple of weeks, recheck your one rep maximum to determine whether to increase the amount you lift in each exercise.