Chest and Arm Workout For Explosive Hypertrophy.

Chest and Arm Workout For Explosive Hypertrophy.

The gyms will be open soon, and you better believe that first day is going to be national chest day. But that’s okay. You’ll be prepared. This chest and arm workout will mark your glorious return to the gym, and you’ll walk out with a massive pump. Let the hypertrophy begin.

Note: This training is taken from my Swole Town program, available through TrainHeroic; the world’s best training app. If you like this workout, come train with the team and get swole af.

Chest and Arms Go Together Like…

Peas and carrots, coffee and cream, alcohol and bad decisions.. You get the idea.

Chest and arms are a natural combination. All pressing movements, like the bench press, dumbell bench press and push ups already work the triceps pretty hard. So, it’s both efficient and productive to work the triceps alongside your chest exercises.

We’re going to work the biceps as well for this workout. And no, it won’t screw up tomorrow’s back day. I’ll show you how, just stay with me.

Chest and Tricep Anatomy

A little anatomy never hurt anyone. If your goal is to build muscle, then your chest and arm workout (and all your workouts) would benefit from having a deeper understanding of how to target specific muscles to get the most out of your training.

Chest Muscles

chest and arm workout hypertrophy

The Chest is actually made up of 4 separate muscles. The Pectoralis Major and Pectoralis Minor make up the vast majority of your chest muscle.

To work the Pectoralis minor, we can use dips and decline presses. Any movement where the body is leaning forward with the arms pressing at a downward angle.

Incline bench presses work the Pectoralis major, focusing on the Clavicular head of the muscle (the upper chest).

The pectoralis major is by far the largest and most dominant muscle in the chest. It spans across your chest from your shoulder to your sternum. It is responsible for moving the humerus (arm), and is worked during just about every chest exercise you’ll do.

With just a little variety we can easily hit all the muscles of the chest.

The Triceps

chest and arms workout triceps muscle

The triceps muscle is a little more interesting. It’s made up of 3 separate muscles. The lateral head, medial head and the long head.

To get the “horseshoe,” we need to specifically focus on the long head of the triceps. The long head can be isolated using movements like skull crushers, lying dumbell extensions, overhead triceps extensions and my favorite.. dips.

Well hit them all in our chest and arm workout, so don’t worry.

BFR Bands and Resistance Bands for Explosive Hypertrophy

For this workout, we’re going to use Blood Flow Restriction Bands (BFR) and Resistance Bands. These tools can take your workouts to the next level. You can take it from me, or read the research for yourself.

Occlusion Training with BFR Bands

chest and arm workout bfr

Blood flow restriction training, also known as “occlusion training” has been around for a long time. Bodybuilders have used it for years.

BFR bands are kind of like a tourniquet placed on your arms. Blood flow is restricted, limiting oxygen and blood to the working muscle.

They are meant to be used for high reps (15-30) with lighter loads (50% of your max or less). Normally, the slow twitch muscle fibers would be handling that type of work.

However, with restricted blood and oxygen, the slow twitch fibers cannot keep up. As a result, the fast twitch muscle fibers have to take over.

Finishing your workout with 10 minutes of fast paced BFR lifting will give you the biggest pump you’ve ever had in your arms. That pump is caused by cellular swelling, and is a precursor to increased testosterone and growth hormone release, and increased hypertrophy.

You can get a set of BFR Bands for around $30 on Amazon. I use these, and they’ve lasted me almost two years already. You’ll thank me later.

Resistance Bands

resistance bands build muscle from home

Resistance bands are a great tool to compliment your lifting.

I like to use them primarily because I can get a ton of volume in with them without the joint stress I’d get from using dumbells, barbells or cables.

Resistance bands offer ascending resistance, meaning the resistance increases as the band stretches, towards the end of the movement.

Since people tend to be weak at the end range of motion, this can be very beneficial. (Think about that last few inches of the bench press when you can’t lock out your arms.)

With bands, we can safely throw in a ton of volume for arm training that we otherwise probably wouldn’t have been able to get in.

You can get a whole set of bands here at a really good price.

Chest and Arm Workout for Hypertrophy

School’s over, and it’s time to get down to business. This chest and arm workout is probably different from what you’ve done before.

I don’t like copy and paste workouts or workout programs. There have been a lot of advancements in our understanding of how to build muscle and get stronger. This workout uses concepts that might be new to you, but if you want to grow, you’ve got to…. grow!

Here’s the workout. Scroll down for videos and explanations for each exercise and for specifics.

A1 – Floor Flyes310-12
A2 – Single Arm Bench Press31090 sec
B1 – Depth Push ups4-53
B2 – Close Grip Bench Press4-552 mins
C – Dips410-1290 sec
D – Incline Dmbl Bench Press38-1090 sec
E – BFR CIRCUIT10 mins30-15minimal
E1 – Dmbl Hex Press///
E2 – Plate Curls///
E3 – Banded Triceps Ext///
E4 – Reverse Curls///
A and B performed as Supersets

1. Warm Up: Floor Flyes/Single Arm Press

Get a good warm up in by doing 3 sets of 10 reps for each. Perform these as a superset, resting 90 seconds between sets. Go light, it’s a warm up.

2. Depth Push ups to Close Grip Bench Press

Research shows that barbell work hits the triceps much harder than dumbells or cables. So I want to make the most of that.

Studies also show that performing explosive push-ups before a heavy bench press can improve your performance. I want to fully activate and stimulate the explosive fast twitch muscle fibers.

Perform 3 explosive depth push ups, then go immediately to the bench and hit 5 reps of close grip bench presses. Work up to the heaviest set of 5 you can get. Try to get there within 5 sets.

3. Dips

Dips are one of my favorite upper body exercises. I’d argue you can build more muscle with dips than with the bench press.

You’re looking for 10-12 reps. If you can get more than that, add weight with a Dip Belt or a dumbell between your legs. . Hit 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps.

To protect your shoulders, you can come down until your arms form a 90 degree angle, then push back up.

4. Incline Dumbell Bench Press

Nothing fancy here. We want to hit the upper portion of the chest. 3-4 sets of 8 reps. Be explosive when you press the weight up.

5. BFR Chest and Arms Circuit.

Strap your BFR Bands on and get your mind right.

Peform the circuit for 10 minutes. Rest as little as possible. Get in as many reps as you can. Go from one exercise to the next.

On the first set, aim for 20-30 reps. Each set after that, your goal is 15 reps. Remember, with BFR Bands, you want to use lighter weight and get in a ton of reps.

All that volume will lead to big gains, and a massive pump. Crush it.

1. Hex Press:

Squeeze the dumbells together the whole set.

2. Plate Curls:

Grab a plate and curl it until your arms feel like they’re going to fall off. Get a good squeeze at the top.

3. Banded Triceps Extensions:

Keep tension on the triceps by trying not to pause or allow the band to come up too high. Constant movement. If you don’t have them, Invest in some Strength bands!

4. Reverse Curls

Grab an empty barbell, palms facing down and bang out some reverse curls. These really make for an insane forearm pump.

Remove the BFR Bands and marvel at the pump.

Maximize Your Gains

If you’re going to be putting in this kind of work, you might as well reap as much benefit from it as possible. Here’s a few things you should definitely be doing to make sure you maximize hypertrophy and recovery.

If you’re looking for some badass back workouts, check this article out

1. Use the Right Supplements

You don’t need to go crazy on the supplements. There are a few that can give you an edge that I’d recommend.

  • Creatine increased power output, strength, recovery
  • L-Citrulline – Found in many pre-workouts, it is converted to nitric oxide in the body and improves blood flow. i.e, gives you a massive pump. Which of course, leads to more hypertrophy
  • Protein – If you aren’t getting at least 0.7 grams of protein per pound of body weight from food, then use a supplement.
  • L-Carnitine – Improved fat burning and increased androgen receptors (better use of testosterone = more muscle).

I recommend getting supplements from Bulk Supplements. It’s cheaper, you get way more, and it’s high quality, pure ingredients vs. the mixtures you get in pre-made supplement formulas. Your results will be better when you know exactly what you’re taking and how much.

Get 5% off your order from Bulk Supplements

2. Eat Before Your Workout

Eating before your workout has been shown by research to have just as much impact on muscle building and protein synthesis as eating after.

During a workout like this chest and arm workout, you want to make sure you’ve got plenty of amino acids and carbohydrate in your body. This tells your body not to burn up muscle, and sends a stronger signal for muscle growth.

It also leads to better recovery after your workout. So, try to get in 20-30 grams of protein and some complex carbs 1-2 hours before your workout.

3. Take Rest Days Seriously

More is not always better. 4-5 workouts a week like this chest and arm workout is more than enough to stimulate massive hypertrophy. If you’re new to working out, 3 days might even be enough.

Prioritize rest and recovery. That’s when you actually build muscle, when you’re resting. Watch a movie, take a nap. Relax. You’ll come back feeling stronger and will build muscle faster.

4. Eat Enough to Build Muscle

You have to eat a surplus of calories to build muscle. There’s no way around it, unless you’re pumping yourself full of anabolic steroids.

Eat more. Get enough protein. Studies show 0.7 grams per pound of body weight of protein is adequate for most people.

Don’t lift like a beast then eat like a squirrel. Your body won’t build muscle that way, and you’ll be wasting a lot of effort.


I hope you actually put this workout to the test. I’d be excited to hear how it went. Let me know in the comments, or by email at

Here are a couple other articles you might find helpful:

As always, I hope this article helped you get a little closer to that best version of YOU!

Mike (Supastrong)
Mike (Supastrong)

Bioforce Certified Conditioning Coach and personal trainer. I’ve run boot camps and served as the wellness coordinator for a fortune 500 company. Currently a Federal Agent in San Diego, CA, and an Infantryman in the Army Reserve.

4 Back Exercises for a Big, Strong Back.  Make Back Day Great Again

4 Back Exercises for a Big, Strong Back. Make Back Day Great Again

I want to make back day great again. It’s always been my favorite day in the gym, so I thought I’d share a few back exercises you probably aren’t using that can help give you big, powerful looking back muscles.

I’ll give you 4 new back exercises, with videos… plus a full back workout to help you join the MBDGA movement. You’re in, right?

Note: This article contains affiliate links to products I use and believe in. They come at no additional cost to you. Also, consult your doctor before performing any exercise program. I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV.

A Big Back is What Makes You Look Big and Strong.

What’s the true sign of a powerful body? It isn’t big arms, and it’s not a big chest either.

While most people in the gym focus on the muscles they can see while facing a mirror, it’s your back that really makes you look big and strong.

Big, thick traps. Wide Lats and a chiseled upper back. That’s what makes you look like a beast. That’s the power look. Powerful guys (and gals) have the look. And so can you.

3 Exercises For a Big, Strong looking Back

back exercises for a big back day

Here we go. Back day is getting an upgrade. Don’t skim this article and forget about it. You were searching for this and you found it, so digest it all and implement it.

Keep what you like and discard the rest. That’s what a smart lifter would do.

#1 Snatch Grip High Pull

The snatch grip high pull is an amazing back exercise. It can give you a bigger back faster than any other exercise, especially in the traps.

It can do this because it’s an explosive movement, targeting the most powerful fast twitch muscle fibers.

How to Perform the Snatch Grip High Pull:

  • Hold the bar with a snatch grip (wide, with arms around 40 degrees from the body.)
  • Use lifting straps so you can really focus on pulling with the upper back
  • Push your hips back as if you were going to vertical jump.
  • Explode the hips and pull violently with the traps.
  • Keep the bar close to your body, elbows high.
  • The bar should come at least up to your chest. If not, it’s too heavy.
  • Return to starting position and repeat for 3-7 Reps.

You can see bigger traps after just a few workouts with these. The fast twitch muscle fibers are much more capable of growth, and the upper back isn’t used to being hit explosively like this.

#2 Reverse Shrugs

Back exercises big back day

Reverse shrugs are an amazing way to work the middle and lower traps.

As you can see in the image above, the traps are not just the part you see when you look in the mirror. They extend down the middle of the back in a trapezoid shape. Hence the name “trapezius,” or just “traps.”

The trap muscle stabilizes the shoulders. It is responsible for elevating, rotating, depressing and retracting the scapula. It’s a postural muscle that you want to be strong. Plus, big traps just look badass.

How to Perform the Reverse Shrug Back Exercise

  • Start on a set of dip bars, arms locked out.
  • Let your body sink down, bringing your shoulders up towards your ears.
  • Push through your arms, focusing on using the upper back to pull your body back up, bringing your shoulders back down.
  • Hold the up position for 1-2 seconds, and repeat for 10-15 Reps.
  • Use a dip belt to add weight if you like. It definitely makes the movement tougher.

Reverse shrugs are an excellent addition to your back day. Developing the middle and lower traps can really help build your upper back. It’ll also strengthen the muscles that stabilize your shoulders and move your scapula and neck. Kind of a win-win.

#3 Band Pull Aparts

Band pull aparts can hit your rear deltoids in ways you’ve never felt before. They’ll also target your rhomboids and traps, making them an awesome option to help you get a chiseled and strong upper back.

On top of that, Band Pull Aparts can help boost your other lifts like the bench press and overhead press by strengthening the muscles that protect and stabilize the shoulders.

How to Perform Band Pull Aparts:

  • Grab a resistance band (aim on the lighter side) and hold it out in front of you around chin height, hands shoulder width apart.
  • Pull the band apart, squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  • Hold for a one second squeeze, and return to the starting position.
  • perform sets of 10-20 reps, or perform as a finisher at the end of the workout by hitting 50-100 reps on short rest.

The burn you feel from these can’t be replicated by rear delt raises. Resistance bands are a really great tool to have and are very versatile.

#4 Farmer Carries

back exercise big back farmer carry

Farmer carries work your entire body. In particular, they really work your forearms (grip), traps, core and upper back.

Your arms can get bigger and stronger simply by holding onto heavy weight for prolonged periods of time. Farmer carries are an incredible exercise to add to your back day.

Me, performing farmer carries at home.

To Perform Farmer Carries:

  • Grab a heavy set of dumbells, kettlebells, or any other heavy implements.
  • Start walking at a quick pace. Keep your body upright while you’re walking.
  • Walk a set distance, or until you feel like you can’t hold onto the weight much longer.
  • Drop the weight, rest and repeat.

Farmer carries can put a lot of muscle on your body. Forcing your upper body to hold onto heavy weight and move is a huge stimulus for muscle growth, and can definitely help you get a big strong looking back.

Back Day is Back!

make back day great again

Use these 4 back exercises and build yourself a big, strong back. If you need help implementing them into your own back day, here’s a solid back workout you can use.

It’s split up into two training days. You should hit a muscle group like the back more than once per week to really get it to grow.

Supastrong Big Back Day Workout:

It should go without saying, but warm up first.

Back Day Workout A: Monday

Snatch Grip
High Pull
3-45 – 72 min
Chin Ups4Max90 sec
410-1290 sec
48-1090 sec
Chin ups and Reverse shrugs can be done weighted, if you so choose

Back Day Workout B: Friday

Deadlift3-452-3 min
Dmbl Row48-1090 sec
Farmer Carries440 yards90 sec
Hammer Curls415-2060 sec
Band Pull Aparts150-100None!

Additional Tips for Back Day Greatness

I do have a few more tips to help you make back day the best day and to help you get a bigger, stronger back.

1. Eat before your back day workout

On back day, you’ll be hitting a large amount of muscle and placing serious demands on your body.

Having a high protein and carbohydrate meal 1-2 hours before your workout is shown by research to lead to bigger muscle gains and better recovery.

Overall, make sure you’re eating a surplus of calories and getting around 0.7 grams of protein/pound of body weight each day to make sure your body has what it needs to build muscle.

2. Use the right supplements

Supplements can definitely help you get bigger and stronger faster. Just stick to the ones that are actually proven to work. Creatine, L-Citrulline, Whey Protein and a handful of others are all you really need.

I recommend checking out Bulk Supplements. You can get large quantities of pure supplement ingredients like creatine, protein or BCAA’s for much cheaper than you’d get at a store or by buying from other supplement companies.

3. Use BFR Bands for additional muscle growth

BFR (blood flow restriction) Bands are proven by research to force faster muscle growth using lighter weights and higher reps.

Using them as a finisher at the end of your back day workouts with some high rep curls and band pull-aparts can lead to additional muscle growth you’d otherwise be missing out on.

Check them out here for around $28. They’re high quality and have lasted me almost 2 years so far and payed dividends to my workouts and progress.

4. Keep learning. Knowledge is Power

I think it’s awesome that you’re looking for new ways to make progress in your workouts. Never stop learning.

Working out is a never ending journey of learning, trying out new things and finding what works and what doesn’t.

Check out these 2 articles if you want to learn more about how your body builds muscle:


Implement these 4 back exercises into your back day workouts however you see fit. Keep what works, and leave the rest behind.

I have no doubt these 4 back exercises can give a huge boost to your back training and help you build a bigger, stronger back.

As always, I hope this article helped in some way to get you a little closer to that best version of You! No get out there and make back day great again!

Build Muscle at Home.  5 Methods that Work + 2 Full Workouts

Build Muscle at Home. 5 Methods that Work + 2 Full Workouts

Can you build muscle at home, without the gym? Yes, but doing hundreds of push ups every day isn’t going to get it done. Read on to see how you can use some advanced techniques and science to your advantage.

Note: This article contains affiliate links. Anything purchased comes at no additional cost to you.

What Makes Muscles Grow?

Your muscles will grow when:

  1. The right type and amount of stress is placed on them regularly.
  2. You consume enough calories and protein to have the extra resources to build muscle.

Regardless of what methods you’re using, there are 2 things that lead to muscle growth:

  1. Mechanical Tension – The muscle can sense the resistance it’s being forced to work against.
  2. Metabolic Stress – The buildup of lactate in the muscle from doing higher repetitions. This is what causes the “burning” in the muscle, usually resulting in a “pump.”

The two are not completely separate. There must be enough mechanical tension to stimulate growth, meaning you must challenge the muscle.

Doing hundreds of standard push ups might feel tough, but the body will quickly adapt to the load being placed on it.

If you want a much more thorough explanation on how the body builds muscle, check out my article: How to Build Muscle: The Full Guide to Gains. Otherwise, let’s move on.

How to Build Muscle at Home: 5 Methods

5 methods to build muscle at home

Here are 5 methods you can use to build muscle from home. I’ll throw in some specific examples and workouts too.

1. Use Explosive Movements

People are too hung up on just doing basic push ups and body weight exercises. These certainly have value, but are not optimal long term for building muscle at home.

Explosive exercises will force your body to recruit fast twitch type II muscle fibers. Your fast twitch muscle fibers are capable of far more growth than the slow twitch fibers.

Just look at a sprinter vs. a marathon runner, and think about how differently they train.

Here are some explosive exercises you can use from home:

  • Squat Jumps
  • Bounding
  • Explosive Push ups
  • Split Squat Jumps
  • Box Jumps (onto any platform)

These explosive movements force the body to recruit the maximum amount of muscle fibers as quickly as possible (rate of force production.) As a result, this is an excellent way to train to be more powerful and to build some quality muscle.

2. Use BFR Bands for Faster Muscle Growth

If you’ve read some of my other articles, then you already know I’m a huge fan of BFR Bands (blood flow restriction bands.) I’m a fan of them because they work. Research says so.

Specifically, BFR Bands are meant to be used with lighter loads and higher reps. In the video below, I’m doing plate curls.. but you can grab anything.. a gallon of milk, a jug of water, or anything you can hold and perform high reps with. You can use them for push ups, or any high rep body weight exercise.

How BFR Training Works

Normally, during a high rep set (15-30 reps), the slow twitch muscle fibers would be dominant in performing the movement. However, the bands restrict blood and oxygen into the muscle. As a result, the slow twitch fibers are unable to keep up, forcing the fast twitch muscle fibers to take over.

Adding in some BFR training (also known as occlusion training) into your body weight routines can make a big difference in your ability to build muscle at home.

Check them out below. These are only $28 and have lasted me well over a year so far.

3. Use Tempo Training For Bigger Gains

tempo push ups to build muscle at home

Tempo training means performing each rep at a specific pace. For example, on a push-up: 2 seconds up, 2 seconds down, trying not to pause at all (continuous movement).

Changing the tempo of an exercise can dramatically change how it feels. Try a set of tempo push ups with 2 seconds up and 2 seconds down with no pauses. The muscles will be burning with fatigue (metabolic stress.)

Tempo reps keep the muscle under constant tension. By slowing down the rep, you are forcing the muscle to recruit more and more muscle fibers as the muscle fatigues.

The more muscle fibers you recruit, the bigger the response. This is why bodybuilders often do slower repetitions.

4. Use Exercise Variations to Challenge the Body and Build More Muscle

If you want to build muscle from home, you have to find ways to challenge the body. Doing hundreds of push ups every day is just not going to work.

Instead, use variations that can challenge the body from different angles. For the push up alone, there are probably over a hundred variations.

Here are a couple of my favorites. If you want to see more, check out my article: 20 Awesome Push Up Variations

There are variations of every exercise. Body Squats, push ups, sit ups, and pull ups all have several different variations that can make the movement both different and more challenging.

Start playing around with some variations and get better at them. Challenge your body!

5. Use Resistance Bands

resistance bands build muscle from home

When it comes to building muscle at home, resistance bands are a tool you definitely should have.

A 2019 Study showed that working out with resistance bands resulted in similar strength and muscle gains compared to using conventional methods (the gym).

With a set of resistance bands, you can replicate almost any gym movement. Squats, Deadlifts, curls and rows can all be performed with a set of bands.

Here are a few examples from my article: 16 Muscle Building Exercises With Resistance Bands.

They’re affordable and extremely versatile. A set of bands can completely change up how you work out at home. Get a few with varying resistance so you can use them for your whole body effectively.

Check these bands out from American Barbell. High quality and affordable

Workouts that can Build Muscle from Home

build muscle at home lisa dips

The best approach would be to combine all 5 methods from above.

Start with explosive movements, then pick some challenging exercise variations. End each session with 10 minutes of BFR training with resistance bands and/or tempo training.

Here’s 2 muscle building workout examples you can try from home:

Tip: Check out the articles below if you need to see video descriptions of these exercises and others you can use.

Upper Body At Home Workout

A. Explosive
Push ups
38-122 Mins
B. Pull ups/
Chin ups
3Max Reps90 Secs
C. Slideboard
Push ups
33-6/arm90 Secs
D. BFR Circuit: 10 MinsOnly when
D1 – Close Grip
Tempo Push ups
D2 – Band Curls/15-25/
D3 – Band Chest Fly/15-25/
D4 – Band Pull-apart/15-20/
Shop Now Rogue Fitness

Lower Body At Home Workout

A. Jump Squat310-1590 Secs
B. Step Ups310-12/leg90 Secs
C. Banded Good Mornings312-1590 Secs
D. BFR Circuit10 MinsOnly When
D1 – Walking Lunges/20 total
D2 – Banded Tempo Squats/8-10/

Create Your Own At-Home Workouts to Build Muscle

You can use the above workout templates to make your own home workouts up. Just plug in different exercises.

Choose an explosive type exercise to start. Then try to look for a challenging variation or two to challenge the body.

Lastly, pick a few exercises you can get relatively high reps with, strap on your BFR Bands and hammer out a 10 minute circuit.

You may have to be creative. Find a way to do pull ups, whether it’s from a beam in the garage or a doorway pull up bar. Find objects you can use for curls and other exercises.

I used to work in a prison, and inmates would fill up trash bags with water or fill pillowcases with books. Where there’s a will, there IS a way.


You CAN build muscle at home. You just need to do things a little differently and use methods that can actually force the body to build muscle.

If I had to put it in an ordered list, it would look like this:

  • Get yourself some BFR bands and resistance bands
  • Start using explosive exercises, tempo training and BFR circuits
  • Eat more and make sure you’re getting enough protein (0.7 grams/pound of body weight, approximately).

Stop doing the same old thing, and take your home workouts to the next level!

As always, I hope this article helped in some way to get you a little bit closer to that best version of you! Leave a comment and follow my blog for more awesome fitness articles and workouts.

Mike (Supastrong)
Mike (Supastrong)

Bioforce Certified Conditioning Coach and personal trainer. I’ve run boot camps and served as the wellness coordinator for a fortune 500 company. Currently a Federal Agent in San Diego, CA, and an Infantryman in the Army Reserve.