Imagine the scene, it’s international chest day (aka Monday) and all of the benches are occupied.
It happens to all of us. The pro’s advice? Train legs instead.
But, if you’ve got your heart set on pumping up those pecs, then this four-move dumbbell and bodyweight circuit is the perfect antidote to a busy gym.
After a thorough warm-up, grab a pair of heavy dumbbells and head over to an adjustable bench, take it up to a medium incline and get ready to work your way through a ‘mechanical dropset’, where you'll be working from the toughest movement to the easiest, cranking up the reps as you go and ensuring not a single muscle fibre escapes unscathed.
Complete five rounds of the following circuit. Avoid resting between movements, but take 2-3 mins at the end of each round to let your muscles recover, ready to smash the next circuit.
1. Incline Dumbbell Bench Press x 6
Lay on a bench set at around a 45-degree angle. Press two dumbbells up above your chest (A), slowly lower both bells over 3-4 secs, keeping your elbows at a slight angle to your torso, until both dumbbells touch your chest (A). Explosively press the bells back to full lockout and repeat.
2. Flat Dumbbell Bench Press x 8
Drop your bench to a flat position and lay on it, with your knees bent and pushing your feet into the floor. Drive your dumbbells back into the air, locking out your elbows (A). Lower the bells slowly until they touch your chest (B). Keep your elbows at 45-degree angle, pause here for a second before explosively pressing back up. Repeat.
3. Press-up on Dumbbells x 10
Sit up and lower your dumbbells onto the floor, and drop into a plank position. With your core tight and hands on your dumbbells (A), slowly bend your elbows to bring your chest to the floor (B). Keep your elbows close to your body as you push back up explosively. Repeat, focussing on keeping the tension on your chest throughout.
3. Hands Elevated Press-ups x Max reps
Let go of your dumbbells and place your hands on your bench, elevating the angle and making the next set slightly easier (A). At the same tempo as before, flex at the elbow and lower towards the bench until your chest just touches it (B). Power back up until your elbows are locked out. Keep repping out in this fashion until you can no longer drive yourself off of the bench.
That’s one round. Still sure you don’t want to train legs?
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