The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    I wanna grow!!
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    Help me!! My chest is not growing fast enough

    All my other bodyparts are growing besides my chest. I have made little gains. I am looking for my chest to have more mass and thickness. My chest routine now is Bench press 4x6-8
    incline bench press 3x8-10
    dumbell flys 3x6-6

    Also I only train my chest once a week to!!
    Here is a picture:
    PLEASE HELP ME!!!!
    Attached Images Attached Images

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  3. #2
    bench, deadlift & eat!!!!! Mic Soloist's Avatar
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    dips will help a LOT

  4. #3
    I wanna grow!!
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    weighted dips?

  5. #4
    headbutting mirrors
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    At your age/size I trained my chest 3 times a week and so did Arnold Swartz. I think 1 time a week is said a lot in magazines because those guys are all at the size they want to be at, but every one of them will say "if I have a bodypart lacking, I will work it twice a week, to make it more symetrical." Well, why would they work it twice a week? Because it grows faster that way.

    Every person is different, but I wouldn't settle for once a week on the chest, EVER. You should switch up your routine and work it twice a week (see if that helps any), and give it time. You won't see gains in weeks, it takes months. If you aren't consuming over 2500 calories a day, it won't matter how many times you lift, your muscle won't grow well if you aren't "feeding" them.

    Benchpress 4 sets, and make each set count. If it's to easy, add more weight.
    Incline Press 4 sets
    Dips 4 sets
    Flys 4 sets

    And if you still feel you have energy left, do some pullovers to stretch out your chest and ribcage. Stretching always helps. In fact, you should spend time stretching your chest each day, that will help you get faster gains. Stretching and eating are just as important as the actual lifting.
    give me gains or i will headbutt every mirror in the gym...

    bring the pain...

  6. #5
    Go Heels! MixmasterNash's Avatar
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    You've got (relatively) big arms but a very skinny frame. You need to do a lot more compounds and put on mass all over. You don't appear to have a large back, which is an important base for building a stronger chest. You should be focusing on heavy pushing and pulling (not to mention deads and squats). Forget isolations like flies.

    As for what mega said, ignore most of it. There's no need to do 16 sets for any body part. Pullovers don't stretch the ribcage. One time a week is plenty for a bodypart to grow.

    Try this: Bench: progressive warmup, 3 heavy sets
    Dips: 3 sets, weighted
    6-10 reps for each set
    Once per week.

    You could work chest more than once per week, but you would be much better served by spending that time with a pulling/shoulder day (pullups, rows, military presses), a deadlift day (deads and shrugs), and a squat day (squats and more squats).

    mega is right on one thing: eat, eat right, and eat more.

  7. #6
    hammin'
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    What about something lke this? ....a compromise of sorts.

    Make the first lifting day of the week chest/back day. Then do legs the next day (this is assuming a 3 day split). Then make the last day an arms day.... but when you work the triceps, include the chest a little bit (eg close grip bench, dips, and some iso movement like skulls)
    They say that when your ships comes in
    The first man takes the sails
    Second takes the afterdeck
    The third: the planks and rails.

  8. #7
    Senior Member geoffgarcia's Avatar
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    IMHO you don't look out of proportion at all...as the rest of your body grows so will your chest.

    I agree with mega on the calories. you should be eating as much as possible at your age/body size.

    3500 calories + every day

    when I was your age I'd eat a pound of pasta and a whole chicken every day for dinner. lunch was 2-3 servings of whatever they were serving and find a protein formula you can afford and you like the flavor of, and have a ton of that every day also.

    at your age you should be able to toss on 15-25 pounds in a year without much problem at all
    Last edited by geoffgarcia; 08-12-2004 at 03:01 PM.

  9. #8
    headbutting mirrors
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    Pullovers definitely stretch the chest and ribcage. Stretching is very important, make sure you find any way you can to stretch your chest out before and between sets.

    Skinny, I suggest if you've already been working once a week and so far you feel you have no results, try something completely different. Noone has perfect suggestions for you, but definitely do not ignore my comments because someone else feels 16 reps is too much for you. Let your body decide, because 16 isn't near enough for me. Try new things and see what your own body responds too.
    give me gains or i will headbutt every mirror in the gym...

    bring the pain...

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by MixmasterNash

    As for what mega said, ignore most of it. There's no need to do 16 sets for any body part. Pullovers don't stretch the ribcage.
    Im not disagreeing with you or anything but many pro bodybuilders do pullovers because they say it stretches the ribcage. arnold swears by it.

  11. #10
    Senior Member CiteCollegiale's Avatar
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    yea but arnold also believed in spot reduction

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mega
    At your age/size I trained my chest 3 times a week and so did Arnold Swartz. I think 1 time a week is said a lot in magazines because those guys are all at the size they want to be at, but every one of them will say "if I have a bodypart lacking, I will work it twice a week, to make it more symetrical." Well, why would they work it twice a week? Because it grows faster that way.

    Every person is different, but I wouldn't settle for once a week on the chest, EVER. You should switch up your routine and work it twice a week (see if that helps any), and give it time. You won't see gains in weeks, it takes months. If you aren't consuming over 2500 calories a day, it won't matter how many times you lift, your muscle won't grow well if you aren't "feeding" them.

    Benchpress 4 sets, and make each set count. If it's to easy, add more weight.
    Incline Press 4 sets
    Dips 4 sets
    Flys 4 sets

    And if you still feel you have energy left, do some pullovers to stretch out your chest and ribcage. Stretching always helps. In fact, you should spend time stretching your chest each day, that will help you get faster gains. Stretching and eating are just as important as the actual lifting.

    I agree with you until you listed the workout. If you are doing 16 sets, 3 times a week on volume you are probably doing entirely too much unless you have some seriously high amounts of drugs in your system. Maybe I misunderstood and you mean do this workout only once a week. Anyhow, I also belive to maximize adaptation and speed up growth you will want to hit the chest more than once per week. For growth it is usually much better to do a little volume spread out over a few days instead of doing it all in one sitting. Here are some things to keep in mind when trying to grow:
    ---Train each group more than once every 7-8 days
    ---Don't over due it, but also don't UNDERTRAIN. A big problem with once a week targets is that you have created the damage, grown back to normal, and then grown stronger in a few days, but then you sit and slowly sink back to where you were (or fall even further back from where you started). I wouldn't say NEVER do a once a week target, because sometimes switching to a once a week target can be a good way to periodize your routine. I've been on HIT for a few short stints with a little success.
    ---Stick to compound movements, and stop trying to get fancy. Somehow, some mislead individual got the idea in his/her head that to grow you have to hit the muscle with tons of exersizes; the more exersizes you use the faster you will grow. This can be no further from the truth. Compound exersizes will allow you to use MUCH more weight than isolation exersizes. I'm not downing isolation exersizes because they have their place also, but not at early stages such as yours. You will experience much more growth by sticking to the heavy lifts for your chest,
    Flat bench press
    Incline bench press
    Decline bench press (I suppose if you really want to you could do these, Some people like them, I don't (The ROM is somewhat limited).
    ---Don't try to hit the muscle from every angle. Unless you are 5'8", 225lbs and 4% bodyfat you will not tell if onearea of your group is larger than the other. Plus, with the chest it is all or nothing. You are either working the chest or you are not. No in-betweens. No isolation of portions. With this in mind I think you should stick to one exersizes to maximize adaptation for that one exersize, then switch it for another compound after you have hit a plateau.
    ---Don't continue to spin your wheels on a routine that is producing little or no gains for you. Why keep using something that is not working?
    ---Change rep schemes when you hit a plateau.
    ---Listen to your body. Soreness should not always prevent a workout. If you notice yourself decreasing in strength every workout you need to analyze your recovery times and volume levels. Your volume may be too high and your recovery period to short. Less is more. You want to provide just enough stimulii so that you can rest, and grow. Remember, working each group 2-3 sessions per week will require much less volume per session. It is best to keep a log so in the future you will know your maximums and what your body can handle.
    ---Don't begin to neglect other bodyparts in your drive for a huge chest.

    I will list a sample workout, you will need to play around with the volume levels. This is an upper/lower body split. You are hitting each muscle group at least twice a week.

    Upperbody: Monday
    Bench press 4x10
    Pullups 4xfailure
    Shoulder Shrugs 2x10
    Military press 1-2 sets of 15-20 reps
    Barbell Curls 1-2 sets of 10 reps

    Lowerbody: Tuesday
    Squats 3x10
    Lunges 2x10
    SLDL 5x10

    Wednesday: Off

    Thursday: Upperbody
    Repeat Monday

    Friday: Lowerbody
    Repeat Tuesday

    Doing the exact same workout twice per week for both upper and lowerbody will get stale pretty quickly unless you add some variation. The best variation for growth is adding more weight. I would start out your first workout at about 80% of your 10rm, and then add about 5% each workout until you have reached your true 10rm. There are a number of ways you can go about constructing your workouts, and you just need to find out what your body responds best too.

  13. #12
    Bodybuilding Mythbuster
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    Quote Originally Posted by NaturalBuilder
    ---Don't over due it, but also don't UNDERTRAIN. A big problem with once a week targets is that you have created the damage, grown back to normal, and then grown stronger in a few days, but then you sit and slowly sink back to where you were (or fall even further back from where you started). .

    No. This is completely wrong. I train one bodypart per week and continue to gain. So do many other people. Please don't make such claims. Thank you.

  14. #13
    Bodybuilding Mythbuster
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    Quote Originally Posted by mega
    At your age/size I trained my chest 3 times a week and so did Arnold Swartz. I think 1 time a week is said a lot in magazines because those guys are all at the size they want to be at, but every one of them will say "if I have a bodypart lacking, I will work it twice a week, to make it more symetrical." Well, why would they work it twice a week? Because it grows faster that way.
    .

    These "guys" are all on drugs and have fantastic genetics to boot. You simply can't compare what a professional bodybuilder does (or what the writer of the article claims the bodybuilder does)* to a genetically normal natural.


    * you do realize that most of those articles are ghost-written, right?

  15. #14
    headbutting mirrors
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    Quote Originally Posted by NaturalBuilder
    I agree with you until you listed the workout. If you are doing 16 sets, 3 times a week on volume you are probably doing entirely too much unless you have some seriously high amounts of drugs in your system. Maybe I misunderstood and you mean do this workout only once a week.
    I said for him to try that twice a week. I definitely do not feel 16 sets is high at all, and I have never tried any drugs.

    Quote Originally Posted by ExtremeAnabolic
    These "guys" are all on drugs and have fantastic genetics to boot. You simply can't compare what a professional bodybuilder does (or what the writer of the article claims the bodybuilder does)* to a genetically normal natural.


    * you do realize that most of those articles are ghost-written, right?
    I think you missed my point. The idea of lifting twice a week on a bodypart lacking is common, so why not apply that idea to each body part? I mentioned the articles as a solid example, because throwing around "joe smoe at my gym says...." doesn't hold much weight (no pun).
    Last edited by mega; 08-13-2004 at 08:42 AM.
    give me gains or i will headbutt every mirror in the gym...

    bring the pain...

  16. #15
    Wannabebig Member
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    Or you can do what I did. Drop $$$ on some 1-Test and workout on a 3-day system doing chest/stomach, bi's/tri's, shoulders/back on separate days. For chest, I do 4x flat bench, 4x incline db (sometimes switched up with incline db flyes), 4x decline, 3x cable flyes, and a burnout routine that is comfortable for you. Some might call it overtraining, but I went from 165 to 185 in less than 2 months, and I was only on the 1-Test for the first month. My chest is still adding weight every 2-3 workouts (10 lbs on bench). Everyone I talk to is amazed at how fast I'm putting on weight.

    Or you could juice, I hear that works well
    "I don't believe for a second weightlifting is a sport. They
    pick up a heavy thing and put it down again. To me, that's
    indecision"

  17. #16
    Go Heels! MixmasterNash's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mega
    I think you missed my point. The idea of lifting twice a week on a bodypart lacking is common, so why not apply that idea to each body part? I mentioned the articles as a solid example, because throwing around "joe smoe at my gym says...." doesn't hold much weight (no pun).
    Because, in the case of a novice lifter, which it appears this person is, working a small/beach muscle like the chest twice a week almost always comes at the sacrifice of large muscles like back and legs.

    I too think it's a good idea to train muscles more often than once a week, but a weekly schedule is only slightly sub-optimal, and it fits our lives with a useful regularity.

    Last, but not least, at this point, he would be better served by putting on mass all over. He is very skinny. Indeed, he might be very well served by an HST program or something similar, but the one thing that doesn't seem ideal is a ton of sets for chest, whether one or more times a week.

  18. #17
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    I would not worry about a bodypart lagging.

    Focus on working hard on the basics, and keep trying to get bigger all over. Your chest will come along fo rthe ride. When you have a big squat, a big row, a big bench, big legs, and a big back, you'll have a big chest, too.

    As far as what's most effective for that? Depends on a whole bunch of stuff that hasn't been provided. What's the rest of your life like (work, school, etc)? How's your diet? Sleep? Play other sports?
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
    "You're wrong, and I have a completely irrelevant pubmed abstract that may or may not say so." - Belial
    I has a blog.
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  19. #18
    Batista's Student –ragons's Avatar
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    guess it will all come together when its ready, cant force nature well ya can but
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  20. #19
    Motors, Music & Muscle HemiVision's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T_Chapman
    Im not disagreeing with you or anything but many pro bodybuilders do pullovers because they say it stretches the ribcage. arnold swears by it.
    Some of the things pro bb's say are astounding in their stupidity. I can't count the number of times I've read one of them claiming a lift builds "quality muscle" or "detail." You'd think someone who did it for a living would know that a muscle only grows or shrinks... unless they do know this and are just trying to sell magazines

  21. #20
    Senior Member IdaMAN's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by NaturalBuilder
    ---Don't over due it, but also don't UNDERTRAIN. A big problem with once a week targets is that you have created the damage, grown back to normal, and then grown stronger in a few days, but then you sit and slowly sink back to where you were (or fall even further back from where you started).
    Quote Originally Posted by ExtremeAnabolic
    No. This is completely wrong. I train one bodypart per week and continue to gain. So do many other people. Please don't make such claims. Thank you.
    Ya, and this is the person who got on Chris's case about his add 1/2" in a month thread for claiming it will work for everyone. He then turns around and makes claims of his own.
    Last edited by IdaMAN; 08-13-2004 at 10:02 AM.
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  22. #21
    En botella whey! Max-Mex's Avatar
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    with my best drew impersonation:

    SQUAT!
    Last edited by Max-Mex; 08-13-2004 at 09:52 PM.
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  23. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdaMAN
    Ya, and this is the person who got on Chris's case about his add 1/2" in a month thread for claiming it will work for everyone. He then turns around and makes claims of his own.

    Who me?
    Last edited by Songsangnim; 08-14-2004 at 12:02 AM.

  24. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by CiteCollegiale
    yea but arnold also believed in spot reduction
    ive read his book on bodybuilding and he actually says spot reducing is not possible. so i dont know where you got that info.

  25. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdaMAN
    Ya, and this is the person who got on Chris's case about his add 1/2" in a month thread for claiming it will work for everyone. He then turns around and makes claims of his own.
    There is not a single place in my reply that I said a once a week target will not work. I simply mentioned the reasons why some people experience problems when using it. Nowhere in my reply did I say that my routine would work for him and everyone else, I did not say "this will work".

  26. #25
    Senior Member IdaMAN's Avatar
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    Congrats, I didn't say you said it either lol.
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