ADVANCED: Chest, Shoulders, & Triceps

Ah Mondays, the dreaded start of the week when all us working souls head back to our 9-5’s. After a long day at work, it’s nice to have something to look forward too. For me, that “something” is the gym. Working out at the end of the day is almost, therapeutic for some. It can be a way of clearing your mind, and at the same time, taking care of your body and health.

Today, we’re looking to kick off the week strong, and what better way to do that than with a fiery chest + shoulder & tricep workout.

This workout has been divided up into 5 different sets, 4 of those being super sets. Dividing your workouts into super sets not only will give your muscles an intense workout but it will also help save you a lot of time.

Let’s take a look at the first set,

Set #1:

Barbell Bench Press – 12 Reps (3x)

Flat Bench Dumbbell Press – 12 Reps (3x)

Barbell Bench Press:

1.    Lie back on a flat bench. Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.

2.    From the starting position, breathe in and begin coming down slowly until the bar touches your middle chest.

3.    After a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out. Focus on pushing the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position at the top of the motion, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.

Flat Bench Dumbbell Press:

1.    Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.

2.    Then, using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width.

3.    Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. The dumbbells should be just to the sides of your chest, with your upper arm and forearm creating a 90 degree angle. Be sure to maintain full control of the dumbbells at all times. This will be your starting position.

4.    Then, as you breathe out, use your chest to push the dumbbells up. Lock your arms at the top of the lift and squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then begin coming down slowly. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.

Superset #1

Overhead Press – 12 Reps (3x)

Barbell Shrug – 15 Reps (3x)

Overhead Press

1.    Stand with the bar on your front shoulders, and your hands next to your shoulders

2.    Press the bar over your head, until it’s balanced over your shoulders and mid-foot

3.    Lock your elbows at the top, and shrug your shoulders to the ceiling.

Barbell Shrug

1.      Stand up straight with your feet at shoulder width as you hold a barbell with both hands in front of you using a pronated grip (palms facing the thighs). Tip: Your hands should be a little wider than shoulder width apart. You can use wrist wraps for this exercise for a better grip. This will be your starting position.

2.      Raise your shoulders up as far as you can go as you breathe out and hold the contraction for a second. Tip: Refrain from trying to lift the barbell by using your biceps.

3.      Slowly return to the starting position as you breathe in.


Superset #2

Incline Bench Cable Fly’s – 12 Reps (3x)

Arnold Press – 12 Reps (3x)

Incline Bench Cable Fly’s:

1.    To get yourself into the starting position, set the pulleys at the floor level (lowest level possible on the machine that is below your torso).

2.    Place an incline bench (set at 45 degrees) in between the pulleys, select a weight on each one and grab a pulley on each hand.

3.    With a handle on each hand, lie on the incline bench and bring your hands together at arm’s length in front of your face. This will be your starting position.

4.    With a slight bend of your elbows (in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon), lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. 

5.    Return your arms back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and exhale.

Arnold Press:

Sit on an exercise bench with back support and hold two dumbbells in front of you at about upper chest level with your palms facing your body and your elbows bent. Tip: Your arms should be next to your torso. The starting position should look like the contracted portion of a dumbbell curl.

2.    Now to perform the movement, raise the dumbbells as you rotate the palms of your hands until they are facing forward.

3.    Continue lifting the dumbbells until your arms are extended above you in straight arm position. Breathe out as you perform this portion of the movement.

4.    After a second pause at the top, begin to lower the dumbbells to the original position by rotating the palms of your hands towards you. Tip: The left arm will be rotated in a counter clockwise manner while the right one will be rotated clockwise. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement.

Superset #3

Overhead Triceps Extension – 12 Reps (3x)

Skull Crushers – 12 Reps (3x)

Overhead Triceps Extension:

1.    Sit on a bench and grab one dumbbell. Form a diamond shape with both hands to grip the top end of the weight. Raise the dumbbell over your head, keeping your elbows up and your core tight.

2.    Lower the dumbbell down the top of your back by bending at the elbow, maintaining your strong chest and keeping your shoulders still.

3.    Raise the weight by fully extending your arms, pausing for a count to squeeze at the top of the movement.

Skull Crushers:

1.    Grip the EZ bar on the inner grips using an overhand grip and extend your arms straight up.

2.    Keeping your elbows fixed and tucked in, slowly lower the bar until it is about an inch from your forehead. Always keep your upper arms perpendicular to the floor.

3.    Slowly extend your arms back to the starting position without locking your elbows.

Superset #4

Rope Tricep Pushdowns – 15 Reps (3x)

Tricep Dips – 15 Reps (3x)

Rope Tricep Pushdowns:

1.    Attach a rope handle to the high pulley of a cable station. Bend your arms and grab the bar with an overhand grip, your hands shoulder-width apart. Tuck your upper arms next to your sides.

2.    Without moving your upper arms, push the bar down until your elbows are locked. Slowly return to the starting position.

Tricep Dips:

1.    Hoist yourself up on parallel bars with your torso perpendicular to the floor; you'll maintain this posture throughout the exercise. (Leaning forward will shift emphasis to your chest and shoulders.)

2.    Bend your knees and cross your ankles. Slowly lower your body until your shoulder joints are below your elbows.

3.    Push back up until your elbows are nearly straight but not locked. If you have shoulder issues, skip this move.

Try this no-nonsense super-set combo for your next chest/shoulder/triceps day and let us know what you think! Good luck!