Big powerful chest muscles in males can be attained through hypertrophy training. How do we accomplish this? Volume + Overload. You want to fatigue the muscle; tear it apart so it is rebuilt again better and stronger… and bigger! Load up those weights to approximately 75-80% of your max and pack on 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps. Make sure that your recovery period between sets is approx 30-60 seconds.
If you want to incorporate some hypertrophy training for those chest muscles into your exercise program, I recommend piling 3 different chest exercises to your routine. Since I do not know your current routine, I would arrange them at your discretion.
DB Bench Press 3x12
DB Chest Flies 3x12 drop set*
DB Incline Bench Press 3x12
*drop sets are when you begin your first set with heavier weights and decrease your weight with each consecutive set.
If you are not interested in getting big strong chest muscles, then I would point you in the direction of endurance training; training that increases your caloric expenditure. If you combine high volume, low intensity strength training with high quality cardio, you will attain that nice “lean” look. The best way to accomplish this is through what we call circuit training.
Here is a sample work out: (For simplicity sake, I’ve only trained the chest muscles to better illustrate the concept).
Set a stopwatch to 8 minutes. Repeat this exercise sequence as many times as physically possible within the 8 minutes.
DB Bench 15 reps
DB Flies 20 reps
Push up 25 reps
DB Incline Bench 15 reps
20 minute run, 4 sets of 3 minutes hard (faster speed) 2 minutes easy (slower speed)
(so 4 sets of a 5 minute interval block, 3 mins hard, 2 easy, can be accomplished at any tolerable pace on the treadmill for 20 minutes)
Hope that was helpful!
Is vanilla the answer? Damn. I guess I’ll have to make a batch of like 5000 protein pancakes with the chocolate powder so I can buy the vanilla instead! So far I’ve managed to water it down with enough water and almond milk to make it taste acceptable but it’s slowly growing on me!
Hi! Congratulations on those 20 pounds! You don’t often meet people who can talk about meeting their weight goals in the double digits like that. That’s pretty remarkable. I’d be happy to answer your question to help you lose more!
Plateauing simply occurs when your body adapts to your exercise routine. Unfortunately though it is a double edged sword: 1. It means that your body is responding to your program and you can handle heavier loads of physical stress. 2. Your body is “smart”, and will require more challenging work loads.
I don’t know exactly what your exercise routine looks like but judging by the amount of weight you have shed, you must be really kicking ass! Based on that, here’s some of my advice.
How to shake up your routine:
1. Cardio Interval Training: This is a great way to take control of your work outs and really melt the fat off, especially if you do it regularly 3x’s per week. The best way to give more edge to your calorie burn would be to practice what we call “interval training”- so by pushing yourself for controlled periods of time at a higher intensity over the course of your regular exercise period. This can be done with cardio machines… free weights… better yet.. both!
Sample Cardio Work Out (30 mins):
30 minutes on treadmill/bike/elliptical/rowing machine
I gave you ranges so you could play with the numbers and I don’t know what your fitness level is like. General guidelines- you want to always warm up for 5 mins, only do your pushes for 2-3 minutes at a time, give yourself no more than 3 minutes of recovery back at base, and allow for 1-2 walking/relaxed recoveries in the 30 mins.
2. Cross Training- got an ice skating rink near your house and some time to kill? go ice skating and kill a few laps at a high speed! do you like to swim? what about indoor rock climbing or soccer? No matter what you choose, you’ll still be active and if you’re by yourself you have the opportunity to push yourself. Think outside the gym and you’ll be much happier.
3. Weight training is always a must in any program. Packing on muscle increases your resting metabolism. Challenge your muscles. No barbie weights!
4. Cross training OUTSIDE of the gym- Ever try Zumba? Cardio Kick Boxing? Fitness should be fun. Not torture! Branch out and try new things. Limiting yourself to one routine gets boring fast!
I know that was a lot of writing, but the bottom line is, cardiovascular training that’s spiced up with intervals will definitely burn a crap ton of fat calories. If you can balance those intense work outs with some fun cross training and a little resistance training on the side, I think you’ll be more pleased with your results while keeping things more exciting!
if you have any specific questions, don’t hesitate to ask! ;)