T Nation

The Big Pec Thread

I remember a little while back someone started a thread asking the boys with big arms to talk about their best techinques principles on building big solid guns. Would like to do the same for pecs as right now I would consider them my biggest issue. They used to be my strength before tearing my left one twice(yup…flat bench press performed first in the workout), now im playing catchup.

So please to all the big guys still around, enlighten us. And in the spirit of the last thread, if you dont have big pecs, dont preach on it. Which is why I will be quiet and listen.

Dumbbells brought along way more growth than the bench press ever did…and then machines added onto it.

My advice is, if you want a freaking huge chest…don’t get locked into thinking the bench press is always the best way.

I don’t have any new pics but my chest has improved and I am leaner now. This pic is from about a year and a half ago.

You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO

Dumbbell Bench and profX is fat.

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I agree. I always like to see the progress the big guys are making.

I’m going to second what X said. In high school, I did a lot of flat benching and got some beefy front delts and that’s about it. After a nasty snowboarding injury, I had shoulder surgery and was told to not use barbell bench. I exclusively use DB’s and machines for my chest and it is growing faster than ever. I pay extra attention to the mmc to make sure I’m fully stretching and contracting my pecs. Otherwise, I tend to compensate with my shoulders.

I’ve posted this video before, but it really helped me know the mechanics of lifting with my pecs. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3C7P4ta8_4g

About 4:30 mark and on.

Well, I get lots of comments on my chest (and girls rubbing on it nomnom,) so I think mine is decent. I agree with X for this one, the bench press is simply not the end-all-be-all. I think it’s all about getting blood pumped in, using sensible rep ranges, and hitting the chest from multiple angles. (This is IME, everyone obviously has more or less effective strategies for them.)

For instance, I like to start on pec-decs, high-rep and super strict before I do any pressing. I’ll usually then do four sets of low incline dumbbell presses (8-12) with a partial ROM supersetted with low incline dumbbell flyes. This will be ungodly. After that, I may hop on dips and some kind of HS press or something or a few sets and then a finisher. I’ll also preach time and time again my perceived importance of extreme stretches… it takes 1-2 minutes tops, and even if it’s a disputed method in terms of viability, it takes little time and can only be conducive towards bigger muscles.

Also, in my completely and potentially misguided opinion, I feel like the chest is per person typically an overtrained muscle. For whatever that’s worth.

EDIT: “Overtrained muscle” sounds weird. I mean I think most people overshoot how many sets are actually needed for good growth.

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.

[quote]jasmincar wrote:
Dumbbell Bench and profX is fat.[/quote]

LOL. That pic is almost two years old.

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.[/quote]

lol did not read
you’re an absolute buzzkill

anyways, I find that wide grip incline focusing on the bottom half of the motion gave me that cleavage in the collarbones and made my pecs bigger. Actually, any type of press or fly with a wide grip and focusing on the bottom half stretch/contraction made my pecs bigger.

[quote]browndisaster wrote:

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.[/quote]

lol did not read
you’re an absolute buzzkill

anyways, I find that wide grip incline focusing on the bottom half of the motion gave me that cleavage in the collarbones and made my pecs bigger. Actually, any type of press or fly with a wide grip and focusing on the bottom half stretch/contraction made my pecs bigger.[/quote]

But…some of you guys don’t have big pecs.

Not trying to be a buzzkill. Just noting the obvious.

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.[/quote]

In 4 months you gained 10lbs of BW while getting leaner?

Damn

[quote]gregron wrote:

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.[/quote]

In 4 months you gained 10lbs of BW while getting leaner?

Damn
[/quote]

Yep. You know me…just clueless and making progress by accident.

X, what is your rep ranges when training chest?

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]gregron wrote:

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]browndisaster wrote:
You should take current pics X. It’s a great way to assess progress IMO[/quote]

I take pictures almost every time I am in the gym.

These pics were just already online.

I already know I made a ton of progress from two years ago.

My avatar shows that…which is about 4 months old itself.

I am about 10lbs heavier than that avatar and a little leaner.[/quote]

In 4 months you gained 10lbs of BW while getting leaner?

Damn
[/quote]

Yep. You know me…just clueless and making progress by accident.[/quote]

Gotta love those supplements :wink:
Ps. Did you know gorillas eat 18kg vegetation per day yet have nice muscle mass?

Why wouldn’t you throw up new pics if you were visibly leaner but up 10lbs? That would be an impressive set of pics compared to your last one.

[quote]Ripsaw3689 wrote:
X, what is your rep ranges when training chest? [/quote]

I currently do way more than I used to. Most of my training life I kept it around 10 reps just working on the weight used. I now do more reps and sometimes do as many as 20 or more on that last set. I also sometimes go to my heaviest weight and then drop to a weight I can do faster and higher reps for.

Overall, I go for strength first and then work on getting more of a pump until “fatigue” or “failure”.

I think Decline Bench is underrated. I know in the last few months, since focusing on it, my chest has made improvements (I’ve gotten multiple comments on it). I think it’s best for those with long arms or who are naturally delt dominant. It’s one of the few movements that I feel EXCLUSIVELY in my chest.

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:
I think Decline Bench is underrated. I know in the last few months, since focusing on it, my chest has made improvements (I’ve gotten multiple comments on it). I think it’s best for those with long arms or who are naturally delt dominant. It’s one of the few movements that I feel EXCLUSIVELY in my chest. [/quote]

I agree if you are “delt dominant”. Otherwise, I think most would benefit from more incline work.

I do decline every so often but it is usually because one of my more favorite movements is occupied by another lifter.

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:
I think Decline Bench is underrated. I know in the last few months, since focusing on it, my chest has made improvements (I’ve gotten multiple comments on it). I think it’s best for those with long arms or who are naturally delt dominant. It’s one of the few movements that I feel EXCLUSIVELY in my chest. [/quote]

I agree if you are “delt dominant”. Otherwise, I think most would benefit from more incline work.

I do decline every so often but it is usually because one of my more favorite movements is occupied by another lifter.[/quote]

Interesting, for whatever reason (biomechanics, grip, who knows,) I’ve found decline movements to allow me to really hit the lower portion of the pec like no one’s business - and I’m delt dominant on pressing. Inclines, anything higher than a fairly low incline (~30 degrees?) is pure delts for me, no matter the range of motion and grip. .02