Workout 40: Chest & Abs


Chest Exercises

1. Flat Bench Press

Caution: In order to protect yourself, it is best to have a spotter help you.

  1. Start by lying back on a flat bench. Use an overhand grip that is wider than your shoulder-width to lift the bar from the rack. Hold it directly above you with your arms fully extended.
  2. Inhale and begin lowering the bar toward your chest until your elbow creates a 90° angle. 
  3. After a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position as you exhale. Focus on  using your chest muscles to push up the bar.
  4. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position at the top of the  motion. Hold for a second and then slowly begin lowering the bar.

2. Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly

  1. Pick up the dumbbells, one in each hand, with your palms facing inward. Sit down on a flat bench and rest the dumbbells on your thighs.
  2. Before lying down, lift the dumbbells in front of you at shoulder-width keeping your palms facing each other. To get into position, lie back and keep the dumbbells close to your chest. 
  3. When you’re ready, press the dumbbells out and above you so that your arms are fully extended.
  4. Slightly retract your shoulder blades, unlock your elbows, and slowly lower the dumbbells laterally to create a wide arc while maintaining the angle at your elbow. You should feel stretch in your chest.
  5. Once the dumbbells reach your chest level, reverse the movement while trying not to let  the dumbbells touch.

3. Dumbbell Around The World

  1. Start off laying flat down on an incline bench, holding a dumbbell in each hand next to your thighs with palms facing up.
  2. Take the dumbbells and create a semi-circle by rotating them up over your head with the motion staying parallel.
  3. Return back to the starting position. 
  4. Repeat this exercise for as many repetitions as needed.

4. Cable Fly 

  1. Find a cable tower and set both pulleys at shoulder-height.
  2. Grab the handles, and bring the two handles together by contracting the chest, as if you were hugging a tree. Keep your arms very slightly bent, without further bending your elbow as you bring your arms together.  Your arms should not bend as you do the movement, but they should be very slightly bent throughout.  
  3. Slowly reverse the movement back to the starting position.  
  4. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

5. Incline Dumbbell Press

  1. Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand atop your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  2. Then, using your thighs to help push the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder-width.
  3. Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder-width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  4. Be sure to keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Then, breathe out and push the dumbbells up with your chest.
  5. Lock your arms at the top, hold for a second, and then start slowly lowering the weight. Note: Ideally, lowering the weights should take about twice as long as raising them.
  6. Repeat the movement for the prescribed number of repetitions.
  7. When you are done, place the dumbbells back on your thighs and then on the floor. This  is the safest manner to release the dumbbells.

Ab Exercises


1. Standing Oblique Cable Crunch

  1. Start off standing with your side next to a high pulley cable machine with a grip attachment connected to the machine.
  2. Grasp the handle with one of your hands, with your feet shoulder width apart and the other arm rested at your side.
  3. Slowly pull down with the arm grasping the cable with your obliques until you feel a stretch in your abs.
  4. Return back to the starting position and repeat. Only when you’re done with one side, move to the opposite side. 
  5. Repeat! 

2. Bicycle Crunch 

  1. Lie flat with your lower back pressed to the ground. Place your hands behind your head slightly above your neck. Lift your shoulders into a crunch position.
  2. Raise yours legs so that your thighs are perpendicular to the ground and your shins parallel to the ground.
  3. Simultaneously, slowly go through a cycle pedal motion kicking forward with the right leg while pulling in the knee of the left leg. 
  4. Bring your right elbow close to your left knee by crunching to the side. Then crunch to the opposite side as you cycle your legs and bring your left elbow closer to your right knee. 
  5. Alternate sides.

3. V-Up

  1. Lie straight on your back with your legs together and your arms together, straight above your head.
  2. In one motion, raise your legs off the floor while keeping them straight. Also raise your torso and hands to meet your legs in the middle of your body.  
  3. Repeat!

4. Plank

  1.  Position yourself face-down on the ground and place your hands shoulder width apart. Keeping your back as straight as possible, push your body off the ground, through your hands.
  2. Inhale as you lower yourself downward, until your chest nearly touches the ground.
  3. Exhale and press your upper body back up to the starting position while squeezing your chest, arms, and abdominal muscles.

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