Specializing one or more deficient muscle groups is a necessity of almost all the athletes who train for aesthetic purposes, except for very few lucky people born with already perfect proportions, there are always some muscle groups that struggle to grow while others seem to develop even with a minimum stimulus. In this case, specialization protocols are used, in which the quantity, variety, and quality of the stimulus on a given muscle group is considerably increased while the workload for the other groups is lightened. In this article after a proper introduction proviron depot, we will see how to develop the bibs when they are lacking.
A necessary premise on the muscle groups left behind
Let’s see what logic to follow and on what parameters to work to structure a specialization program for pectoral exercises.
- Increased training frequency and total weekly work volume
The total volume of work over the long term (usually the week is taken into consideration as a time interval for convenience), is probably the most important discriminant that influences muscle hypertrophy. The best method to increase the total work volume is to distribute it in more frequent sessions with an average work volume that provides adequate stimulation but at the same time allows you to recover quickly enough to stimulate the group again after a short time. muscle.
- Stimulation of all the qualities that contribute to the breastplate hypertrophy
As we know (I dealt with the subject in this article ->) hypertrophy has a multifactorial adaptation, that is, there are many and different skills to train to maximize it.
The main ones are mechanical damage, progressive tension, accumulation of metabolites such as lactic acid and the expansion of the muscle band through the so-called » pumping «.
In a specialization program, taking advantage of the high frequency with which a muscle group is trained, all three of these skills will be stimulated within the same week (or microcycle), modulating the training parameters (loads used, volume of repetitions, recovery times, intensity techniques, choice of the type of exercise) depending on the type of work you want to do and the type of stimulus you try to do.
Modulation of the workload on the other muscle groups
The body’s ability to synthesize new muscle mass is limited, in this sense when trying to obtain the maximum possible growth in the shortest possible time, of a certain muscle group, the stimulus on the other groups must be reduced to a minimum sufficient to maintain the mass and strength already obtained previously and does not stimulate further growth.
A common mistake is that of increasing the work on a specific group but not balancing it by lowering the work on the other groups enough, penalizing the development of the muscle that tries to improve more and drastically lengthening the recovery times, in the worst cases you get to do an overall amount of work that exceeds the body’s ability to recover, even experiencing deterioration.
Intensity modulation during the week
All those who have a fair experience in the weight room know that it is not possible to train a muscle group with a high frequency, to the maximum of possibilities and intensity.
The intensity must be modulated in the various sessions, high enough to be training but not excessive to invalidate the recovery and compromise subsequent workouts.
Careful and intelligent choice of exercises for the bibs
Exercises are tools and should be used as such. We will not go in search of the «best» exercise, but we will use a wide range of movements, choosing each time the most suitable for the job we want to do. Rather than forcing the execution of certain exercises that are not suitable for a particular job, we will use other movements and tools that are best suited to make a certain stimulus.
During a specialization protocol, the diet will obviously have to be high in calories, with a greater surplus as the muscle to specialize is large (training with large total volume, 3 times a week, the legs involves a certain energy expenditure, doing it with the biceps obviously involves a very different energy expenditure), to learn more read also the article on how to speed up the metabolism, there must be adequate systemic rest (I do not recommend more than four training sessions with weekly weights, maximum five for the real phenomena with extraordinary recovery capacity ).
Before starting a specialization program it is good to analyze why the group you want to strengthen is lacking, often the causes are:
- Wrong technique of execution and control of the muscle during the exercises that interest it, the more we use multiarticular exercises, the more we risk involving less our target muscle. Obviously we are not advising multi articular but only highlighting that it is easier to make mistakes with them.
- Subjective physical structure means that in the classic exercises for the given muscle group, the synergists do most of the work leaving the target group stimulated little and badly (here the structure is concerned and not the execution technique).
- Never have trained the deficient group with the same intensity and volume as the other groups (for example, always train after others and never when fresh at the beginning of training.)
How to develop the bibs when they are deficient
In the specific case of the chest, a perfect scapular control, a good muscular proprioception and the adequate execution technique are fundamental to avoid that in all forms of thrusts most of the work is not done by the anterior deltoids and triceps. If these fundamental aspects are not treated first, it is useless to start specialization programs.
In the program that we will propose there are no bench presses with the barbell and the reason is simple: it has already been carefully treated in this article by Marcello Delfitto on the flat bench in bodybuilding, the reason why the flat bench is not recommended (and in a way analogous the distensions with barbell in similar angles) is when we face subjects with a certain type of structure.
If an athlete is interested in a specialization program of the chest, he is probably not one of those structurally fortunate for the development of this muscle group, and since barbell stretches are highly synergistic exercises, where the force of the deltoids and triceps are heavily involved, more than forcing the executions to minimize their work on synergists, I find it more logical to use alternative exercises that better match the work you are trying to do.
In practice, the specialization for bibs
Having made this necessary introduction, let’s go down into the practical and see how to apply these concepts to a specialization program for the bibs:
We will train the chest three times a week on alternate days (for example Mon-Wed-Fri or Tuesday-Thursday-Sat) focusing on a different quality and type of stimulus in each session (mechanical damage, pump and metabolic work, progressive tension) while the work on the remaining muscle groups will be reduced to a minimum, and can be divided into either an average volume with a low frequency (once every 7-10 days) or a low volume with an average frequency (once every 4-6 days).
We will use many different exercises and tools:
- Bench presses in various angles with dumbbells (the classic for pectoral exercises with dumbbells )
- Folds and Parallels to the rings or similar convergent independent supports (of which I have explained the advantages in the article of the alternative exercises to develop the bib, valid for training the bibs at home )
- Stretches and crosses in various angles to the cables
- Important postural exercises to maintain the correct balance at shoulder level such as pullover with handlebars and face pull with rope. Or simply in dumbbell stretches, be sure to complete the ROM (see: shoulder exercises )
- Day 1 — Mechanical muscle damage
In this session, we will aim to bring a purely mechanical stimulus to the muscle so as to damage it just to stimulate its subsequent super-compensation.
To do this we will use medium-high loads (6-8RM) emphasizing the eccentric and the stop in extension and long recovery times (2-3 minutes), as we are interested in keeping the loads high during the series, and not producing metabolic waste or run out of glycogen, which will be a job dedicated to another session.
To cause good mechanical damage it is necessary to choose exercises that allow you to overload the eccentric muscle a lot and present a strong extension under load.
The best choice, in this case, are the heavy dumbbell stretches, or the bends and the parallels to the overloaded rings.
We will use two, one that works more on the declined plane (sternal and abdominal bundles) and one that works more on the inclined plane (sternal and clavicular bundles).
An excellent choice would be:
- Incline bench presses (20-30 °) with 5x6RM dumbbells 3 min recovery (the exercises for the pectoral muscles provide an even higher angle)
- Dip at the parallel bars with wide elbows (Gironde style) to the rings with neck overload (through chains, ropes, etc) 4x8RM 2’30 » recovery
- Both chest exercises will be performed with an emphasized negative of 3-4 seconds, a stop at the bottom in a maximum extension of two seconds and an explosive concentric, with a complete rom (avoiding only the joint block at the concentric end)
An interesting technique to experiment in this session is to use exercises in which the negative phase is more overloadable than the positive one. We know that it is the eccentric phase of movement that causes the most muscle damage and that the muscle is noticeably stronger in this phase (20% and more).
Exercises that lend themselves are the bends to the wide rings, in which we will normally perform the concentric, while the eccentric we will perform it as a cross trying to stretch the arms and thus increase the lever and the actual load on the pectorals, and the thrusts with dumbbells which can be performed in the same way with classical concentric and eccentric cross-like.
This technique can be very burdensome on the shoulder joints given the high loads used so use it sparingly and evaluate if your joints allow it.
The long-term goal will be to increase the loads used for the same repetitions ( Load intensity progression ).
In the proposed scheme, the exercise that emphasizes the work on the clavicular part is performed first, and then the one that emphasizes the work on the stereo-abdominal part. If you want to give priority to the Sterno-abdominal area of the chest, you can reverse the order of the exercises, but always doing the first with a% RM and a greater recovery than the second.
Day 2 — Pump and metabolic work
In this session, diametrically opposite to the first, we will aim to produce a lot of lactic acid and metabolic waste to obtain a good pump and thus iron the band. To do this we will use relatively low loads (around 15 RM) short recovery times (60 seconds or less), techniques such as stripping and super series and continuous voltage executions, using exercises that keep the voltage constant on the whole rom and allow a strong peak contraction in maximum shortening.
Exercises that lend themselves to such work are:
— Bendings to wide rings (if you are able to perform at least 12-15 of them with your own body weight)
— Stretches and crosses with dumbbells or cables
An excellent scheme can be:
- Wide ring bends or stretches on bench declined with dumbbells or Chest Press if you have suitable models: 4x15RM 60 » of recovery, with peak contraction of two seconds in maximum concentric (joining hands)
- High cable crossover : 3 × 12 + max + max in stripping, scaling about 20% of the load each time, peak contraction of two seconds in maximum shortening
- Crosses standing from bottom to top on cables + Man pullover lying on bench (feet on bench) 3x15RM + 15RM
- The Pullover with handlebars is a highly synergic exercise where the main engine is the long head of the triceps but an enormous work is also done by the abdominal bundles of the chest and the back muscles. Performing it in superseries with the chest already very congested, we will make it the limiting muscle of the movement and at the same time, we will increase the time under tension. The pullover emphasizes the extension of the backbone of the spine. This area is not physiologically made to extend. If you have joint problems in this area, avoid it, otherwise, your structure will absorb all the insults without problems.
The loads in this session are of secondary importance, we are not interested in developing high tension or recruiting all muscle fibers or causing muscle damage, but only producing metabolic waste and ironing the fascia.
The long-term goal will be to reduce recovery times for the same repetitions ( Density progression ).
Day 3 — Progressive tension
In this session the goal will be to develop a sufficiently high tension for a time under sufficiently high tension, to do this we will use a medium repetition range (8-10RM) exercises that keep the tension constant throughout the movement but also allow us to use adequate loads, performed with a controlled execution speed and a direct voltage with average recoveries (90-120sec)
An excellent scheme can be:
- Bendings or Parallels to the ballasted rings or extensions on the bench declined with dumbbells: 5×8 RM 2 ‘recovery
- Flat bench presses with dumbbells: 4x10RM 90 ″ seconds of recovery
- Chest Press Inclined (if you have a suitable model) or pushes to the cables on an inclined bench: 3 × 10 90 ″ of recovery.
The long-term goal will be to increase the number of sets per exercise, with the same load and repetitions ( volume progression ).
If repeating day 1 after day 3 is too stressful and you cannot recover, you can insert an additional day of light Pump without intensity techniques, in which the muscle is only slightly stimulated and the blood flow to it is increased to speed up recovery.
The training of the other muscle groups
As for the other muscle groups, the «maintenance» volume is subjective and relative to the athlete’s level.
5-8 series every 4-6 days or 10-12 series every 7-10 days for large groups (back, legs) and a slightly lower volume for smaller groups (shoulders, arms, calves, etc) could be adequate.
I recommend during the specialization of the chest to train the upper back and especially rhomboids, middle and lower bundles of the trapezius and posterior deltoids at least twice a week to maintain a correct balance at the level of the shoulders and a correct posture.
Face pull with rope with extra rotation, Rowers with dumbbells on bench at 30 ° with open and wide elbows are excellent exercises for this job.
Pectoral exercises conclusions
The specialization cycle can last from 3 to 8 weeks, then it is good to carry out a general drain and wait at least 6-8 weeks before possibly resuming another specialization period of the same muscle group. As always you will get the result if you can increase the training parameters and if you combine the right mix of stimulus-nutrition-recovery.