OK this is at least one of the very best chest workouts that I know, incorporating THE best chest exercise for men on the planet.
What makes it the best? And why for men? Of course women can do this too, but I believe most guys like nice, flat and square pecs, NOT these droopy, booby-kind of chest muscles that look like you might need a bra anytime soon!
Even with really low body fat, pecs can look more like MOOBS (man boobs) than anything, if you train them wrong!
For women on the other hand, that might even be beneficial. So there is a difference.
Can you change the shape of your pecs?!
Now upfront: some say you cannot change the shape of a muscle, only it’s size. I say “rubbish” to that! And in this article I will show you just what I mean…
There is one chest exercise that is perfect for flattening out the pecs, all while building the lateral (outside) fibers, resulting in that nice, flat, square pecs-look the ladies love. That Calvin Klein Model-look. YOU know…
OK if you had enough background and want to jump right to the best ever chest workout according to Mark, you can just click here now and it’ll take you down the page to the relevant section.
If you’re interested in more details, read on…
The thing is, not all exercises are created the same, ditto for workouts, and that goes especially for chest training.
If you just want to slap on some muscle mass pell mell, any old how and place, there’s many pec routines that are quite effective and will do that for you.
But I would not usually recommend this approach, because it might just end up adding a lot of muscle mass, but in all the wrong places.
The results can be a droopy, booby, typical body builder look, where it seems they forgot the bra at home, even though there’s zip fat on them.
So totally lean and yet kind of with “moobs” (man-boobs) anyways…
That’s what happens when you train chest indiscriminately, and you build up the lower pecs a lot.
Exercises to avoid
If you don’t want that, or already have too much mass in the lower chest, here are a few exercises I’d take it rather easy on:
- Decline presses
- Decline flies
- Bench press
These either emphasize the lower chest or build the whole thing, like flat bench press.
But for those who prefer a sharp, top-model kind of look, with nice and flat, square and wide pectorals, there’s a better way…
The Best Chest Workout for Good Looking Pecs
If you’re like me you want to not only add mass, but also achieve the right shape and look!
Because believe it or not, this isn’t so much about genetics we’re talking here.
No, the type of exercise used has a much greater impact on molding those slabs of armor the ladies so like to rest their heads on!
There is one exercise in particular that will create just that really cool look … if done exactly right.
I call them “Arnie Flies”, since he basically invented or at least perfected it.
They are the main component of this workout, and here you can see them done by the chest master, Arnold Schwarzenegger:
Let’s hear what the Austrian Oak has to say on them for getting wide and flat pecs:
“They stretch the rib cage and build the outer pectorals. They’re one of my favourite exercises and have had the best effect on my pectoral muscles, causing them to grow wide and low, with a lot of definition … Doing a fly is like hugging a large tree.
You make a wide circle with the dumbbells.
A lot of the guys do it with the weight so close to the pecs that it becomes a pressing movement. Be sure to get a full stretch by lowering the dumbbells as far as possible on each repetition … I rarely see anybody using the correct form. But people I’ve taught to do it the right way have developed incredibly huge pecs. One of them is Franko Columbu.”
This is Franco here on the left, and you’ll notice his pecs are extremely wide…so forget about genetics: this can be done! I did it, as well…
And now for the actual workout, incorporating Arnie Flies in an especially effective way:
A Killer Chest Routine: the “Repeat Tri-Set”
Some call this double tri-sets because it’s not 3 exercises but rather only two: exercise 1, followed by exercise two, and then you repeat the first exercise once more. So it’s like 1, 2, 1, instead of 1, 2, 3.
Or in this example you do Arnie Flies, Incline Press, Arnie Flies.
The advantages are that you
- Emphasize the most important exercise –the Arnie Flies–
- Get an incredible pump with this set-up, and
- Avoid heavy pressing, which will spare your shoulders.
And the dynamic stretch incorporated into the flies will do two things at once: it will help flatten out the pecs, and also it’s great for shoulder health.
So here’s the workout notation:
1.Arnie Flies, 3-5 x 10-15 reps, 1010 tempo, 10 seconds rest
2.Incline Dumbell Presses, 3-5 x 15-20 reps, 1010, 10 seconds rest
3.Arnie Flies, 3-5 x 8-10 reps, 1010 tempo, 120 seconds rest.
And this is how to read it:
You grab an adjustable flat-to-incline bench and a pair of dumbbells, approximately 10-15% of your Bench press max each. So if you bench 100 kg for one max rep, you choose in between 10-15 kg each dumbbell.
Then you do 10-15 reps on the Arnie Flies with the bench set on flat, take a 10 second-breather, adjust the bench to a 45° incline, pump out 15-20 reps on the incline presses, re-position the bench to flat in 10 seconds and squeeze out another 8-10 reps or so, this time again on the Arnie Flies.
That’s one Repeat Tri-Set.
Now it’s 2 minutes rest then you do it another 2-4 times, for a total of 3-5 sets.
The tempo on 1010 simply means 1 second up, 1 second down, so fairly fast but smooth and controlled.
Here’s the Table:
|Repeat Tri-Set||Sets||Reps||Tempo||Rest Interval|
|Arnie Flies||3-5||10-15||1010||10 seconds|
|Dumbell Incline Presses||3-5||15-20||1010||10 seconds|
|Arnie Flies||3-5||8-10||1010||120 seconds|
A note on the Arnie Flies: I like to hold the stretch at the very bottom of the movement on the last rep of a set for about 5 seconds. Also please don’t try them too heavy: you couldn’t use strict form no matter how strong you are, and the risk of tearing a pectoralis muscle would be relatively high…
The arms/elbows should be at about a 30° flexion, and that angle should remain locked!
The Best Chest Workout Video
This exercise and workout are incredible at shaping attractive pecs for you, while keeping the shoulders in top shape, avoiding all associated side effects of heavy pressing, especially heavy barbell benching.
It’s designed to flatten out and widen your chest (the flies), it’s emphasizing the upper pecs with the incline presses, and it incorporates a pre-fatigue effect:
The triceps are involved in just about every chest movement … not this one. That means by the time you get to the incline presses the triceps are still fresh and will take your pectorals for a ride: to totally smoke them!
And then you finish up with a repeat of the flies and those pecs are fried!
Yet another advantage of this chest workout is that you can easily do it even in a very busy gym: all you need is an adjustable bench and one pair of dumbells! Then you’re all set for the whole routine.
It’s pretty much the only thing I do for chest work now, it’s that good!
It worked for Arnie, it worked for Franco Columbu, and it worked for me …
I now have the nice, flat and square pecs, too!
OK, I hope you guys like this workout, for our purposes it really is the best you can do!
If you find this article valuable, then please share it with your father, your mother, your sister, your brother and your cousins! …and tell all your friends…
Mark’s top 5 chest exercises, in order:
1) Arnie Flies
2) Incline Arnie Flies
3) Incline Dumbbell Presses
4) Incline Barbell Presses
5) High Cable Flies
PS: if you have sore shoulders from too much pressing or other training, or just want to make sure it never happens, check out my ‘Bullet Proof Shoulders for Judo’ Program HERE.
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