Unconventional Advice to Revamp Your Bench Press

Unconventional Advice to Revamp Your Bench Press: Bench Press 3 Times a Week?

The first thing you need to do is decide if you want to go with your current routine or start from scratch. If you are like most people, then it would probably be best for you to stick with what works for now.

If you are not sure which way to go, then I suggest you read through this article and come back here when you have made up your mind.

Bench Pressing Every Day Is Better Than Once a Week?

I think that’s obvious.

But why is it better than once a week?

Well, let me tell you why…

 You will get stronger faster!

When you bench press every other day, you might be able to lift heavier weights but the time it takes to recover between sets will take away some of your gains. With three days per week, your muscles won’t have as much recovery time so they’ll respond quicker to any additional training stimulus.

Your body needs a certain amount of rest period after each workout before it can train again. By bench pressing every day, your muscles will become fully recovered in time for you to train again.

During the first few weeks of training, your nervous system and connective tissue will dictate how much you can bench press and how often. The only way to increase your bench press after this transition period is to increase the size of your muscles.

The only way to do that is to increase the amount of weight you’re lifting and the reps you’re doing. If you wait too long in between training sessions then your body won’t be able to make gains as quickly.

For example, my brother bench presses every day. He has been training for a year and can bench press 200 pounds. His best friend also benches 200 pounds but he waits three or four days in between each workout. It has been a year as well.

Who do you think has made more gains?

It’s not even close. My brother’s friend has only been able to bench press 200 pounds consistently while my brother can now bench 250 pounds more than once. He might even break the 300 pound mark by next year.

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There is a point of diminishing returns though; daily training will not make you superhuman. If you train four days a week, you will still make great gains.

As you can see, bench pressing every day is superior to bench pressing once a week.

What if I Can’t Bench Press Every Day?

If you’re like most people then you are probably going to have a hard time bench pressing every single day especially if you’re new at this. Don’t be discouraged if you feel like you’re regressing for the first month or two; it happens all the time. You just won’t make as much during the early stages when your body is still adapting to the stress you’re putting it under. By waiting an extra day or two between training sessions, you give your muscles and nervous system time to recover. This will prevent overtraining and injury.

While I am a proponent of overtraining, most people cannot train optimally more than three times a week because of their lack of discipline.

Once you get past this hump, then you’ll be able to make progress at a faster rate.

As for the people who don’t have the ability to bench press every day, I would suggest that you bench press three times a week instead of four or five. The more you train a muscle group, the longer the recovery time should be.

If you can only train three times a week then I’d suggest sticking with three and not going any lower than that. Once you feel like you’ve hit a plateau and aren’t making any more gains, try training every other day instead.

There is no right or wrong way; it’s all a matter of how much discipline you have and what works best for you.

What Kind of Results Can I Expect?

If you train hard enough for a long enough period of time, you should be able to increase your bench press by over 100 pounds.

Think that’s impossible?

Some people can only train a muscle group every five days.

As long as you aren’t exceeding three days of recovery in between training sessions then you’ll be fine.

Here’s the lowdown:

3 Days Per Week – You can bench press every day but shouldn’t because you’d probably get overtrained if you aren’t already used to it. Then you’re not training hard enough.

When I first started over four years ago, I weighed 105 pounds and could only bench press 95 pounds. Four years later I weigh 130 pounds and can bench press 315 pounds.

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5 Days Per Week – This is the ideal training frequency. You can bench press every day but shouldn’t because you’d probably get overtrained. 6-7 Days Per Week – You shouldn’t be benching more than three times a week because your body won’t have enough time to recover.

10-12 Days Per Week – You would only want to do this if you’re on steroids because your body wouldn’t have time to recover otherwise.

By sticking with the program you can expect to gain a lot of strength. However, after a few years of training you’ll have to change your routine up in order to continue making gains because your body will adapt to the stress that you’re putting it under.

You shouldn’t be discouraged if you don’t make the progress you want to make right away. You may have to wait a few months before you start seeing any major differences. Everything takes time. Good things come to those who wait. Patience is a virtue.

What’s the best overall Bench Program?

There are a lot of bench programs out there and most of them work pretty well for most people. If you want my advice on which one I think is best, go with the 3 Day Per Week Program because it has worked the best for me.

What program should I follow?

Go with whatever program you think will work best for you. 4×4 is great for beginners because they can make good strength gains while also getting their “groove” back for benching.

If you’re an intermediate or advanced lifter, I would go with the 3×3 or lower frequency because your body will need longer to recover from the stress you’re putting it under.

3 Days Per Week – 3×3 (Good for beginners and intermediates)

Monday – Medium Grip Bench Press, Incline Dumbbell Press, Decline Dumbbell Press

Wednesday – Medium Grip Bench Press, Dips, Close Grip Bench Press

4 Days Per Week – 4×4 (Good for beginners)

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Monday – Medium Grip Bench Press, Incline Dumbbell Press, Decline Dumbbell Press

Wednesday – Medium Grip Bench Press, Dips, Close Grip Bench Press

Friday – Medium Grip Bench Press, Incline Dumbbell Press, Decline Dumbbell Press

If you’re looking for more of a challenge I would go with Madcow’s 5×5 program because it adds a little bit more intensity to your workouts. 5×5 is also good for intermediates.

5 Days Per Week – 5×5

Monday – Bench Press, Incline Bench Press, Dumbbell Bench Press

Wednesday – Deadlift, Stiff Leg Deadlift, Back Extension

Friday – Bench Press, Incline Bench Press, Dumbbell Bench Press

Remember that these programs are just a guideline and you should adjust them to suit your personal needs.

What about tricep work?

Okay this is the most highly debated topic in weight training. Some people say you should do tricep work. Other people say you shouldn’t bother. Here’s my take on it: You should do whatever will help you achieve your goals. If you want big triceps then you need to do work them.

Keep in mind that your arms are not catered backwards; they all originate from your shoulder joint. This means the muscle action used for pressing exercises like the bench press is going to hit your triceps as well. This is also why a lot of people feel they don’t need to do tricep work.

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If you want big guns then I suggest you incorporate tricep work. What kind is up to you. Some people prefer extensions with a barbell or dumbbell, some prefer JM presses or even kickbacks. If your goal is to increase your bench then you’ll benefit from doing JM presses or bench dips because they engage the triceps more during the pressing motion. If your goal is to just have big guns, then do whatever you want.

Other Things You Should Know

Supplements – Few things in this category are effective and nothing will replace smart eating and hard work. Creatine monohydrate has been shown to be effective regardless of what the haters say. Protein/amino acid powder has its benefits as well. Other than that, everything else is a waste of money in my opinion so don’t waste your money .

Other people prefer barbell or dumbbell extensions mainly because it allows them to use more weight. This can also be problematic because most aren’t flexible enough to get proper form with straight weight so they end up using less weight than they could be using if they used dumbbells.

While I think extensions are great for people, I don’t think they should be a priority for someone who wants to increase their bench. The tricep is a small muscle.

Cardio – This is a touchy subject for many people. I’m going to give you some advice that may piss a few of you off but here it is anyway:

If you’re fat and out of shape, then doing prolonged cardiovascular activity will only serve to make you better at being fat and out of shape. If you don’t believe me, go grab a 150 lb man who never exercises and has been sitting on his couch all weekend and get him to run a 10K. Even if you had tiny little toothpick arms, you’d still get huge triceps because they aren’t being forced to support anything except your hand. Unless of course you have some sort of birth defect, then I feel sorry for you.

I think many people forget that the tricep is also a pushing muscle as well. I guarantee he’ll be done long before you are. This is even more true for someone of average weight and small stature like myself. If I tried to run ten kilometers I’d probably die.

In other words, if you’re grossly out of shape, don’t do cardio .

If you want to lose fat and you’re not terribly out of shape, then go for a walk. When you bench press, your triceps are being activated the entire time to push the bar away from your chest. This is why many powerlifters will tell you that your triceps are just as important as your bench press for increasing your bench. If you don’t believe me, try benching with a thumbless grip.

It sucks doesn’t it?

This is why I suggest JM presses, JM dips, and close grip inclines as good tricep exercises to focus on. Each of these exercises will be focusing on the portion of the tricep that is getting the most work when you bench.

You can also try doing 5 minutes of walking on the treadmill after your workout.

If you want to lose fat and are moderately out of shape, combine these two approaches.

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If you want to lose fat and are extremely out of shape, well I assume you probably saw theDoctor on your own.

Oh wait, he died. The last thing you want to do is deplete your upper body strength because you’re trying to lose flab.

This is one situation where I’m going to tell you to listen to me because although I might lack the formal education, I’ve done this before and I damned sure know more than you do.

If you want my full program, you can purchase Mythology: Building the Bench .

Now I’m going to talk about supplements. This is a touchy subject for me because I’m always skeptical of them and I think they are grossly overhyped by companies and the media. With that said, I’m going to give you my honest opinion on what I think will help you the most.

Creatine – Creatine monohydrate is one of the few supplements that has been scientifically proven to increase strength and muscle mass.

You don’t need to buy the expensive pills. You can get all of these from food or cheap pills.

Now for D’s workout.

D WORKOUT

Workout A:

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Exercise Sets Reps Rest

Notes and Variations : See Intro to this Section

This is a very basic routine that should appeal to hardgainers. You will grow on it, but strength gains will be slow. Be sure to drink your heavy, recovery drinks as outlined in the diet section. This routine is all about heavy weights with low reps. If you aren’t lifting heavy, your muscles won’t have to regenerate, and the only thing you’ll get out of this routine is bigger shoulders.

The only way to get big without getting stronger is through drugs. You can get an edge by doing the following:

1.) Warm up for at least a few minutes. The last thing you need is to pull a muscle because you’re half asleep!

2. Rest a lot. This is vital to growth. Physics101: Force = Mass (How hard you’re working) x Acceleration (How fast you’re moving the weight) The mass doesn’t change, but you can increase the acceleration by not lifting for a while and then doing a double or triple or however many reps it takes to complete the set.

3. You’ll probably need more food than you think.

I suggest cooking a lot of food, like chicken and rice. You can reheat it as necessary. Don’t bother with fancy diets: in this case, more is more!

4. Don’t be afraid to take some breathers.

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You may have to drop the weight a few times to get your wind back. Just make sure that you don’t lose focus and neglect proper form. In a few weeks, you’ll be able to lift this weight for a whole lot of reps!

5. The sets don’t need to be done continuously.

If you think you need a rest, take it. This routine will be very tiring if you aren’t used to it, and it’s better to be cautious than to ruin all your progress with an injury.

Diet:

As far as eating, remember the following:

1.) Eat big. Fish is good, as are red meats, but don’t forget chicken and eggs.

2.) Protein supplements can substitute a meal or two, but don’t overdo it. Too much protein isn’t good.

3.) Keep eating. In a few months, you’re going to want to skip a meal every once in a while, but don’t! Even an apple will keep your strength up and prevent your body from going into starvation mode.

4.) The same goes for protein supplements. If you don’t use them, your body will crave food so bad that it won’t matter what you eat. You’ll overindulge, and that’s not good either!

5.) Drink plenty of liquids. This will keep the muscles supple and flexible, and prevent the cramps that tend to accompany weightlifting.

6.) You may want to take a multivitamin as well. You should be fine on most counts, but it can’t hurt.

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7.) Make sure you’re getting calcium and such for strong bones!

8.) Carbohydrates are good for energy, but don’t go overboard. You want to put on some bulk.

9.) Drink a heavy, calorie beverage during your workout. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy, but keep the energy up or things will start to lag.

10. Remember to go number two. It makes your muscles less efficient if you hold it in.

Workout:

This routine should be performed three times a week, with at least one day off in between sessions. You’ll be training each body part once a week, and you’ll increase the weight when you can perform five reps of any given exercise. Here is the routine:

Day 1: Chest and Abs

1.) Bench Press: 5 X 5

2. Crunches: 50

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3. Incline dumbbell press:

5 X 5

4. Crunches:

50

5.) Incline Dumbbell flyes: 5 X 5

Day 2: Legs and Abs

1.) Squats: 5 X 5

2.) Leg raises: 50

3.) Barbell Lunges: 5 X 5 each leg

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4.) Bicycle crunches: 50

5. Leg Press:

5 X 5

Day 3: Back and biceps

1.) Deadlifts: 5 X 5

2. Pull-ups: 50

3. Barbell rows:

5 X 5

4. One-arm Dumbbell rows:

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5 X 5 each arm

5. Barbell curls:

5 X 5

6. Dumbbell hammer curls:

5 X 5 each arm

Day 4: Shoulders and Triceps

1.

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Bicycles, bangs, and bloomers: The new woman in the popular press by R Gopalakrishnan – 2018 – Penguin Random House India …

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Nicholas Moore, Stevens and the Fortune Press by PL Caron – Va. Tax Rev., 1993 – HeinOnline

The High Potential’s Advantage: Get Noticed, Impress Your Bosses, and Become a Top Leader by LK Thaler, R Koval – 2007 – Currency

Portable Faith: How to Take Your Church to the Community by M Ford – Wallace Stevens across the Atlantic, 2008 – Springer

It’s Not the How or the What but the Who: Succeed by Surrounding Yourself with the Best by CR Hickman – 2005 – Simon and Schuster