T Nation

Splitting Chest Workouts



Just curious, after splitting my back routine to 'Back Width' and 'Back Thickness' each week and getting really good results, i'm considering doing the same for chest, though i'm not sure how to split it up and whether it will be as effective.

My chest is lacking as well as my tri's IMO, so it'd kill 2 birds with 1 stone to hit chest twice a week, maybe from different angles or maybe one compound, one isolation.

Any suggestions or experiences?



yup good idea... I like to do consecutive workouts to realy blast the chest... just switch up your movements rep range weight, machines vs free weights... dumbells vs bar bell... Check out thib's stuff he's got a lot of good ideas.


I've had pretty good results form spans where I would focus one chest session on upper and mid, and the other on lower and mid. Also currently using a split where in one chest sessions I do a lot of heavy pressing, while the other involves mostly cable work with one pressing exercise at the end (adopted this approach after my elbow started aching from too much heavy pressing each week,... something to keep in mind).



I do 2 chest workiuts a week. For me, this has worked best.
I do not split in terms of regions - if they ever exist - but in terms of loading parameters.

On Wednesdays I do a pretty conventional bodybuilding workout with 3-4 exercises, 8-12 reps and 4-5 sets per exercise.

On Saturdays I do a heavy pressing workout with sets of 3. I usually just do bench presses and top-half bench presses and floor presses for a high volume of low-rep sets. I throw in some traps, rhomboids and rotator cuff work inbetween sets.

Works great for me.


Thanks guys, I think i'll run 12 weeks splitting Top+Mid and Bottom and see how it goes.

After that I could try compound/Isolation on separate days and see how that goes.

Any links to Thibs splitting a chest routine up?



Should a person only try to do 2 sessions per muscle group for one muscle group at a time? (eg just one part you want to really focus on, rather than a regular set up)

It sounds like a good idea to do a separate quad/ham day, back width/thickness day, 2 chest days, but now we are at 6 workouts and this is not even a full a cycle yet lol

Just wondering how you guys set your splits up with this kind of approach.


Previously i've just chosen a particular bodypart that I want to work on/improve and done that one twice a week. I did 6 months of Push day/Pull day repeat 3 times. It hits everything 3 times a week, but it's a killer routine.

I guess if you could train twice a day then you could do major's twice (Back, Chest, Legs) then do a regular split around it.

My current week is:

Mon - Legs
Tue - Back Width (Chins/Lat PD)
Wed - Chest
Thu - Back Thickness (Deads/Rows)
Fri - Shoulders + Traps
Sat - Arms/Calves



It really comes down to a few factors:

1- Your individual ability to tolerate exercise induced stress and still recover
2- Your attention to diet and recovery (sleep!)
3- How truly taxing each session is going to be (usually higher frequency necessitates lower volume each session).

I'm currently hitting chest and legs each twice every 6 days. This is the split I followed during Fall 2009 for several months before starting my 2010 contest prep, and while I still think my legs can improve a lot, the difference afterward was certainly noticeable.

Thibs has written 'specialization' programs where you pick one body part and hit it 3x each week, with other bodyparts put on a sort of maintenance routine (for recovery's sake). Again, it's going to be different on a person by person basis, but of course you never know if something will work until you intelligently try it.