Chest and Back Workout: Alternating 2 Major Muscles

After a much needed short vacation, my gym schedule was thrown off this week. We were in the mountains of Wyalusing, PA, a beautiful and serene place. And per my Facebook post, we did a bit of hiking in the mountains. It was nice to get away and a little break from the gym never hurts.

On that note, I combined two major muscles and did a chest and back workout this morning. I haven’t done this type of workout in a while. I must say that combining pushing and pulling is a nice feeling. Your whole upper body is pumped and it feels like a complete workout, if that makes sense.

Combining two major muscles in one workout can indeed be challenging. You’re using a lot of energy and you really have to push yourself. It can also lead to a longer workout. But there are some things I do to cut the time down. I’ll share those tips along with this morning’s chest and back workout.

Chest and Back Workout

  • Incline Bench Press
    • 5 x 8-10, 1 x 20
  • Barbell Rows
    • 5 x 10-12, 1 x 20
  • Decline Bench Press
    • 5 x 8-10, 1 x 20
  • Lat Pulldowns
    • 5 x 10-12, 1 x 20

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Alternating Chest and Back

You can see that I alternated my chest and back exercises. This worked out nicely as it gives you a full, well-rounded pump in your upper body. In short, you feel big all over and from every angle!

This also helps you give adequate energy to each muscle being worked. If you did all chest or all back first, the next muscle would get less stimulation as you would be tired. Alternating chest and back allows you to give similar attention to both, for the most part.

Come to think, a chest and back workout isn’t much different from doing a full leg workout. With legs, you’re training quads and hamstrings, which are the front and back.

More Sets and 20-Rep Sets

I chose only two exercises each for chest and back, and did more sets. This helps cut down a little on the length of your workout. You don’t have to worry about changing machines.

I also ended each exercise for my chest and back workout with 20-rep sets for each exercise. I do this quite often as it helps pump more blood into the muscle. It also works different muscle fibers than doing less reps with heavier weights. Like the concept of alternating chest and back, throwing in a 20-rep set at the end gives your muscles that full feeling.

3 Day Workout Week

This is going to more than likely just be a 3-day workout week for me. I’ll train legs tomorrow and arms on Friday. I may skip shoulders and traps this week. As I’ve said many times in the past, your delts get a lot of workout from your chest and back workouts. So if I have to skip anything, it’s usually shoulders.

I must admit it was nice to have some time away. As much as I love training, your body does need a short break now and then. I came back this morning focused and ready to train hard!

Train with Passion,



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