High Volume Chest Day – More Sets, More Reps

For years I’ve gone back and for on which training method works best: shorter, high intensity workouts vs training with more volume. I’ve come to the conclusion that both methods are extremely effective at building muscle. Thus my answer has become alternating these methods. This week is all about volume, in which this morning was my high volume chest day.

Chest Workout – 25+ Sets

Collectively I hit over 25 sets for chest this morning. To me, that’s a lot. And it may seem overkill to some. But the overall goal was to pump more blood into the muscle. That goal was indeed accomplished. Here’s the list of chest exercises with sets and reps below:

  • Cable Crossovers
    • 5 sets x 12 reps
  • Incline Barbell Press
    • 5 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Dumbbell Press
    • 5 sets x 8-10 reps
  • Hammer Strength Decline Press
    • 5 sets x 10-12 reps
  • Pec Dec Flyes
    • 3 rest-pause sets

Chest Exercise - Incline Press Jason Stallworth

We have 5 chest exercises here. For the most part, I did 5 sets for each exercises. I hit 3 rest-pause sets for the last chest exercise, pec dec flyes. Actually, it was a double-rest-pause set each time. 1 rest-pause set consisted of doing one set, resting 10 seconds, doing another set, and repeat once more. This is great way to get that final burn.

Less Rest Between Sets – Chest Day

My rest time was about 45 seconds between sets. I may have rested a little longer between the final sets of incline bench press and dumbbell press. I typically take shorter rest periods between sets with high volume training. If I didn’t, I’d be in the gym forever.

Remember, the goal with high volume chest training is to pump more blood into the muscle. Where you may not be going as heavy as you would like, you’re still exhausting the muscle. Less rest between sets is also a great way to get conditioned. You’re essentially building and burning simultaneously.

Short, High Intensity vs High Volume Workouts

There’s an old saying ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.’ I don’t think there’s anything need to change something if it’s still working. On the flip side, you have to be willing to adapt and make adjustments accordingly. This is true in life, and it’s also true with your workouts.

I stick with the basics consistently with my workouts because those are the foundation of building muscle. You can change the structure but you don’t want to mess with that foundation. It’s the techniques and the arrangement of your workouts that are good to change. And I change these often, sometimes weekly.

I find I do really well following a plan for about 2-3 weeks and then I need to switch it up a bit. For example, I can train heavy to failure for a couple of weeks before my body starts telling me to back off (I’m over the 40 mark). I can then switch to a high volume workout. I’ve gotten great results from this so far.

Train with Passion,


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