T Nation

Bench Help


Hi guys, just new to T-Nation. I have been working out for a few years, and bench has always been my weakness compare to squat and deadlift. 1 rep max for squat is 425, deadlift is 435, power clean is 215, but BENCH is only 200. I know there is something wrong, very wrong. I tried some program, but its just some struggle for bench and so hard to put more load.

Currently I am doing twice bench a week, Tuesday and Friday, 5x5 and 3x3. Its still so hard to get progress unlike the other two. I am almost devastating and so desperate to look for help. Any advice?


working out the last few years? How consistently have you been benching compared to your other lifts


are you very tall? are your triceps buff?


Always switch up the routine unlike deads and squat


Not, I am 5 11
I think my triceps are not strong


Always change bench routine, kinda inconsistent
I am 5 11, not very tall


triceps are the most important thing for bench press. hit them hard. things that work: dips, bent over push downs, and smith machine bench press to failure and rack lockouts


maybe you should try being more consistent


try smolov jr


I realized that, but when finish bench, I can't hit them so hard, only can use relatively light weight


Tried, dead in the end of second week, can't make progress and appeared to be overtrained


i doubt you are overtrained, you are under recovered.

my stats are similar in that my bench is waaaay low compared to deads and squats. my bench is finally climbing. i am doing more volume then 3x5. including warmups ill hit 12-15 sets with last one being a burnout set with 135. other workout days i have been doing pushups, pullups, dips, and more rowing too. my overhead is climbing too.


i doubt that too at the beginning, but my squat and power clean are climbing steadily. can you just detail a bit about your bench program? thanks


What is your full routine?


I started dedicating a full day to dynamic bench and heavy shoulder work, on top of a heavy chest and tricep day. My bench has gone up 30 lbs since February with this routine. I can share the actual set/rep ranges if you're interested.


monday lower body squat and power clean and plyo
tuesday upper body bench 5x5, dips, and rows
thursday dynamic box squat, deadlift/sumo, powerclean/glute raise, plyo
friday bench 3x3, overhead press, 3x6, rows, 2 sets of tri


yes please
im interested in anything that would bring my bench up
everytime when i train bench, i am so down, so disappointed


btw, does it matter to my bw? i only weight 183lb right now. just dont wanna big round belly, so diet is pretty clean


My bench sucks too. However, after months and months of stalling, it is finally progressing, since trying Hepburn's routine, 8 x 2 - 3, followed by 6, 5, 4, 4, 4, 3, 2 times a week (details can be found in Hepburn's Law, available online).


This looks a little messy because I copied it in from Word. My max at the time was 285 so all of the weights are based off of that. Weeks 1 - 6 are based on 90% of your 1RM.

Heavy Bench Progression
Weeks 1-6: Start @255 lbs. 5 sets of 2; Go up 5 pounds each week
Week 7: 2 sets of 10 reps at 60% of your last working weight. That should be around 170
Weeks: 8 -12
Week Full Rep Set Full Rep Set Set with 1 board Set with 1 board Set with 2 board Set with 2 board

8 285x2 285x2 290x2 290x2 300x2 300x2
9 290x2 290x2 295x2 300x1 305x2 310x1
10 295x2 300x1 300x2 305x1 310x1 315x1
11 300x2 305x1 305x2 310x1 315x1 320-325x1
12 305x2 310x1320x1 325x1 330x1

Dynamic/Speed Progression
Weeks 1-12
? 5 sets of 3 of speed bench. 60% of heavy working sets each week.

Other movements on each day would be.

Heavy day
Close Grip bench with 2 board 4 sets of 3 reps
Weighted Dips 3x8
Cable Tri Pushdowns 3x10

Speed Day
Standing Barbell Military/Shoulder Press: 3x5 and one set of 10 (4 Sets total)
Flat DB Press: 3x10 ? Should be weight that you can press with good speed. Performed similar to speed bench
Bent Rear Delt DB Raise/Rev. DB Fly: 3x12
Standing Lat DB Raise: 2x12