T Nation

Where's The Beef (Chest)?

I have been at this for only a short while, hell I have no idea half of the stuff I am reading!! Still, I’m catching on fast and like all the info. I do have one question, as I am not seeing the results that I want at all! I have been doing alot of upper body and for lower I have not been lifting a lot, starting out slow due to lower back issues.

Anyhow I am lifting 75lbs 2x 2reps in dumbells and benching 195 up to 2x 4reps. I do other lots of other lifting inbetween that but that is my main “toppers”. Well I have no chest!! No freakin mass whatsoever!! I am running on off days and someone said that would affect my building mass, can anyone help me?

two questions:

  1. Are you eating enough to grow? If the scale isnt moving up don’t expect much muscle gain no matter how hard you train.

  2. It sounds like your a beginner so why are you doing sets of 2-4 reps to build mass? Low reps can build mass if properly implemented but I believe beginners should stick to more common hypertrophy methods (commonly 6-12 reps)

[quote]JNeves wrote:

  1. It sounds like your a beginner so why are you doing sets of 2-4 reps to build mass? Low reps can build mass if properly implemented but I believe beginners should stick to more common hypertrophy methods (commonly 6-12 reps)[/quote]

I agree. I started lifting 4 times a week this summer, and I’m still a beginner, and still getting bigger on 4 sets of 10 on every exercise I do. Volume and intensity!

If you are overweight or otherwise high Body Fat you might just not be able to see your chest. If you are skinny, have no chest, and benching that amount of weight as a beginner…powerlifting is in your future my friend.

I am really not over weight and yeah I am very much a beginer. I am no longer that over weight, too not see my chest. Been there done that, but I am 29 and 6’1" and now 230 where as I used to be 260. I know I still have a lot of fat to lose but, I really have no “coaching” when I lift. So what I learn or read is what I have been adapting to my workout. Thanks for the rep. info, I have people telling me low reps high weight and high reps and low weight. Hell if I know?

[quote]GunSlingerRoland wrote:
I am really not over weight and yeah I am very much a beginer. I am no longer that over weight, too not see my chest. Been there done that, but I am 29 and 6’1" and now 230 where as I used to be 260. I know I still have a lot of fat to lose but, I really have no “coaching” when I lift. So what I learn or read is what I have been adapting to my workout. Thanks for the rep. info, I have people telling me low reps high weight and high reps and low weight. Hell if I know? [/quote]

I don’t know what has happened in the last few years of human evolution, but I see some of you guys claiming body weights that SHOULD be causing you to look much more muscular and filled out, yet there are people on this board claiming they weigh 220lbs at 6 feet tall…and they are skinny as all hell.

I just don’t get that.

You don’t have a chest because you HAVE NO CHEST MASS. Your muscles are not very big, therefore, you won’t be seeing too many muscles in the mirror.

Yes, it is that simple.

Gain more muscle.

You say you still have a lot more fat to lose…as if that should be your main priority right now. If you drop anymore weight you will not like the result. You don’t have the muscle to look “ripped”. Are you even working on gaining muscle or still attempting to lose weight?

In addition to eating, you definitely have to increase the volume. Search for set/rep bible by Chad Waterbury. You’re not going to achieve much if any hypertrophy from 2x2 or 2x4.

[quote]GunSlingerRoland wrote:
I have been at this for only a short while, hell I have no idea half of the stuff I am reading!! Still, I’m catching on fast and like all the info. I do have one question, as I am not seeing the results that I want at all! I have been doing alot of upper body and for lower I have not been lifting a lot, starting out slow due to lower back issues. [/quote]

Why not just try something proven that a knowledgeable coach figured out instead of doing your own programs: Have a look for Big Boy Basics or Total body training by Chad Waterbury and follow them exactly as written.

Another hint: if you are not gaining any muscle mass while training hard, you are eating too little. You lost a whole lot of weight, which means that you are (were?) in a negative calorie balance. It is very difficult to gain significant lean mass at the same time.

Focus on either losing fat or gaining muscle, not both at the same time. Whatever you choose is up to you and how you want to look.

Actually, I recognize myself a bit. You look like I did after losing a whole lot of fat. I chose the continued fat loss path, which I regret now since I wasted valuable time where I could have built muscle instead. At last I realized that I was more undermuscled than overfat and started to work from that point. That’s not always easy to grasp as a former fat boy.

Losing fat is really easy, gaining quality mass is not.

[quote]GunSlingerRoland wrote:
I really have no “coaching” when I lift. So what I learn or read is what I have been adapting to my workout. Thanks for the rep. info, I have people telling me low reps high weight and high reps and low weight. Hell if I know? [/quote]

This is where premade programs come into play. Most people hate premade programs because they arent individualized, but for a beginner they will almost all work at least for awhile. Doing these premade programs will give you the experiance under the bar to combine with whatever knowledge you gain.

You could read about proper program design till your blue in the face but its not going to do you any good if you don’t have the experiance to know how you respond to different training methods.

Also like mentioned your not going to build a huge chest if your trying to lose weight.

I’m a beginner as well, and I’ve seen this question asked before. I saw it on the Menshealth forum and one of the trainers/coaches, I can’t remember which one, said something along the lines of “to get big in your upper body, you have to train hard in your lower body.” I don’t know the significanceof it all, but it seems like sound advice.

Look into it. And good luck to you.

[quote]Veinshatter wrote:
I’m a beginner as well, and I’ve seen this question asked before. I saw it on the Menshealth forum and one of the trainers/coaches, I can’t remember which one, said something along the lines of “to get big in your upper body, you have to train hard in your lower body.” I don’t know the significanceof it all, but it seems like sound advice.

Look into it. And good luck to you.[/quote]

It means that your body grows as a whole. If you want to be big, you can’t just focus on biceps and chest and expect to grow to your fullest potential.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
It means that your body grows as a whole. If you want to be big, you can’t just focus on biceps and chest and expect to grow to your fullest potential.[/quote]

Also, I’ve read from many sources that squats, bench press, and rows as compound exercises cause a lot of testosterone presence, aiding in gaining muscle overall. Google it.
Since I started focusing on and emphasizing my squatting effort, I’ve seen faster progress in other upperbody exercises.
Try it out.

[quote]GunSlingerRoland wrote:

Anyhow I am lifting 75lbs 2x 2reps in dumbells and benching 195 up to 2x 4reps. I do other lots of other lifting inbetween that but that is my main “toppers”. [/quote]

I’d love to know what other lifting you are doing to compliment your chest program. Regardless, I don’t know any beginner I’ve ever met who has put on significant size with 2 sets of DB’s and 2 sets of bench. Your sets and reps are too low to stimulate growth for you.

Please 1) post the rest of your workout or 2) pick a program from this site and stick with it.

You don’t look 230 in the photo, I would have guessed 200. If you want to gain mass, EAT lots of clean food.

[quote]supfrochild wrote:
Professor X wrote:
It means that your body grows as a whole. If you want to be big, you can’t just focus on biceps and chest and expect to grow to your fullest potential.

Also, I’ve read from many sources that squats, bench press, and rows as compound exercises cause a lot of testosterone presence, aiding in gaining muscle overall. Google it.
Since I started focusing on and emphasizing my squatting effort, I’ve seen faster progress in other upperbody exercises.
Try it out.[/quote]

I think I just felt the earth stop.