Going Heavy: Chest and Tris, Back and Bis

Back 10x10

This has been an awesome week of strength training for me so far. As you may know, I started going heavier last week. It just hit me one day. Not to mention the cooler months are right around the corner (well, not so much here in FL), and that means mass season!

I want to share the first two workouts on this week. Back and bis on Tuesday, and chest and tris this morning. Yes, I took Monday off from the gym (it was Labor Day, so I did absolutely no labor!).

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405 lb Bench Press

Tuesday – Heavy Back and Bis

  • Hammer Strength High Rows
    • 4 x 6-10
  • Plate-Loaded Rows (with chest-rest)
    • 5 x 10, 8, 6, 5, 5
  • Dumbbell Rows
    • 4 x 8
  • Close-Grip Pulldowns
    • 3 x 12
  • Dumbbell Hammer Curls
    • 4 x 10 –drop set on final set

I wanted to start out with deadlifts and barbell rows, but my lower back just wasn’t having it that day. If you have prior injuries or if you’re older, you really have to listen to your body. However, I was still able to go heavy on the exercises I used as substitutes.

Wednesday – Heavy Chest and Tris

  • Bench Press
    • 5 x 8, 5, 3, 3 1
  • Incline Bench Press
    • 5 x 10, 8, 5, 5, 1
  • Incline Dumbbell Flyes
    • 4 x 12
  • Cable Pressdowns
    • 5 x 10 –drop set on final set

I’ve never been super strong on bench press and I’m not sure if part of that is mental. I’ve gotten up to 405 lbs before; that was about a year or so ago. I went up to 375 this morning and hope to get back to 405 soon.

Mixing Big and Smaller Muscle

It’s the norm to train triceps with chest and biceps with back. In this case, since I went pretty heavy on chest and back, I kept my volume down for biceps and triceps. I only performed one exercise for each after training the larger muscle.

Despite the lack of exercise volume, I made the exercises I did for bis and tris very intense. I added a drop set at the end. I love drop sets, especially for smaller muscles. This gives you that pump and it exhausts the muscle. If you go all-out, one exercise should be enough. And I plan to hit a little arms again on Friday.

Powerbuilding: Bodybuilding and Strength Training

The method I’m using is what many refer to as powerbuilding. The term has a nice ring to it. Yes, I want to get stronger. I feel better overall when I’m lifting heavier. But I’m not trying to be a powerlifter.

Powerbuilding is a mixture of bodybuilding workouts with strength training techniques. What this means for me is starting out with heavy weights and compound exercises. Sometimes I’ll go heavy on the first two exercises and sometimes only on the first exercise.

Throughout the workout, I gradually bump up the reps. So I’m going from strength training and power to hypertrophy and building the muscle tissue. It’s like that Van Halen song from the 5150 album, ‘Best of Both Worlds.’

Train with Passion,


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