Building Your Chest at Home

A friend of mine is currently preparing his body for a top-surgery revision and reached out to me for help with building chest muscle at home.

He was advised by his surgeon that having more muscle and less fat in the chest area would help to enhance the result of his revision surgery.

Although I put this basic workout together specifically for him, anyone who is looking for help getting the hang of chest day at home can benefit from this routine.

This workout is designed to be done with just a basic set of low-weight dumbbells. If you don’t have any dumbbells at home, then check out this low-cost adjustable set to get you started! Be sure to warm up first and to do some cool down stretches at the end once you’re done.

You can click here to download a PDF version of this workout!

AlixCoeFitnessLogo1

Chest Workout

For Beginners

(Home-Based)

I recommend that you do this workout once every three days for optimum results. Do not do this workout any more regularly than once every three days, as your muscles need time to recover if they are to grow.

The majority (but not all) of the exercises in this routine follow a reverse-pyramid protocol when it comes to the weight of the dumbbells. This means that you perform your heaviest set first and then drop the weight for the following sets. This makes it more likely that you will reach muscle failure with each set – this is a good thing! If you only have one set of weights, then it’s also fine to use the same weight for each set.

First exercise: Push-Ups

Set 1: 10 incline pushups (if you can’t do 10 then go to failure)

Set 2: 15 regular pushups (if you can’t do 15 then go to failure)

Set 3: 10 decline pushups (if you can’t do 10 then go to failure)

Rest for 60 seconds in between sets

Second exercise: Dumbbell Floor Press

Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Hold one dumbbell in each hand, with the backs of your hands resting on the floor by your shoulders. Your elbows should also be in contact with the floor. Straighten your arms and push the dumbbells up towards the ceiling. Hold at the top for a moment and then return to the starting position. This is one rep.

Set 1: 10 reps

Set 2: 12 reps – drop the weight

Set 3: 15 reps – drop the weight

Drop set: Reduce weight and go to failure

Rest for 60 seconds in between sets

Third exercise: Dumbbell Floor Fly

Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Hold one dumbbell in each hand, with your arms straight out to each side, and the backs of your hands resting on the floor. Keep your arms straight, making sure to not lock your elbows, and bring both arms up so that they meet directly above your chest. Hold at the top for  a moment and then return to the starting position. This is one rep.

Set 1: 10 reps

Set 2: 12 reps – drop the weight

Set 3: 15 reps – drop the weight

Drop set: Reduce weight and go to failure

Rest for 60 seconds in between sets

Fourth Exercise: Svend Press Variation with Dumbbell

Stand tall with your chest forwards and your shoulders back. Keep your feet hip-width apart and do not lock your knees. Take a dumbbell in each hand with a supine grip and push them together as hard as possible directly out in front of your chest. Pull the weights in towards your chest, making sure to keep them pressed firmly against each other and then back out again. This is one rep.

Set 1: 10 reps

Set 2: 12 reps – drop the weight

Set 3: 15 reps – drop the weight

Drop set: Reduce weight and go to failure

Rest for 60 seconds in between sets

Fifth Exercise: Single Chair Dips for Chest

Stand in front of the seat of the chair, facing away from it. Lower your body so that your hips are at seat height and grip the front corners of the chair with each hand. Reach your legs out in front of you, but maintain a slight bend in the knees. Lean forwards slightly and lower your body down towards the floor, hold for a second and then lift yourself back up to the starting position. This is one rep.

Set 1: 15 reps

Set 2: 12 reps

Set 3: 10 reps

Rest for 60 seconds in between sets

That’s it – you’re done lifting for today!

Make sure you stretch your chest out before you get back to your day.

Any questions? Head over to my contact page to send me an email and you’ll receive a response within 24 hours.

Preparing Your Body for Surgery

If you are preparing your body to have top surgery then paying extra attention to your chest during your gym routine can be a great idea. It is by no means essential to do this, and you can certainly still have a successful surgery without ever having done so. However, if it is your aim to create a sculpted and defined chest post-surgery, then it can be helpful to start training pre-surgery.

Weight Loss for Surgery

If your surgeon has advised you to lose weight before top surgery then this could be for a number of reasons. It is entirely up to you whether you wish to follow this advice or not.

Surgery itself, and the use of anaesthetic, can carry an increased risk for those who are considered to be overweight. You can click here to read more about why!

Although most surgeons won’t disqualify you from surgery for being overweight, they might encourage you to try to lose some weight before the surgery to help reduce the risk of complications. Also, losing excess weight before top surgery specifically can help with how your chest looks once everything is healed. Again, it is always up to you whether you wish to make changes or not.

I know several people who have had top surgery who embarked upon extreme diets in order to try to get their weight down quickly because they felt pressured to do so. Dieting like this is unlikely to work in a sustainable or healthy way, and can also affect your physical health and emotional wellbeing.

Aiming to follow a balanced meal plan and exercise often is arguably the healthiest and most effective way to reach and maintain a healthy weight.

healthy eating weight loss.png

This generally means eating less sugar, less saturated fat, less fried foods, and eating more fresh, whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and naturally occurring carbohydrates.

If you want to talk about your diet, or have questions about any of the points raised in this post, then you can reach me via email anytime.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s