Weight and Resistance Training - Exercises for upper chest development

06-08-2012, 02:15 AM
Lol, this is one of those rare "I want to bulk up" questions. My weight loss has left me with visible ribs in my upper chest while still being relatively well padded in other parts of my body. I do barbell weights and body weight exercises and my arms, shoulders and back look pretty good to me, but I don't seem to be hitting my upper chest (above the boobs, below the collar bones). Does anyone have any recommendations to add some muscle to cover up the ribs Crypt-keeper look? It makes people tell me to "stop losing weight" all the time even though I am not!

For upper body I currently do:

pushups (girly type and regular type to try to hit different areas)
lat pull
bench press
overhead press
rows (with free weights)
and little pumpy things with 8-10lb weights when I watch TV, taken from Jillian Michaels videos: squats while doing front raises etc.

I would like to do deadlifts, squats and things like that, but I don't have anyone here to coach me on proper form, and I am concerned about messing up my back.

06-18-2012, 03:35 AM
You could try incline bench press with dumbbells, dumbbell flyes...that's all I can think of at the moment for upper chest isolation stuff, sorry, it's been a few years since I lifted that way.

06-18-2012, 07:51 AM
Your routine sounds pretty similar to mine and it sounds like you have most of your bases covered. What about increasing your weights and doing short reps?

The only things that I could think to add are:

Dumbell Flys
Punches with weights (I normally do this as a pseudo cardio workout with various punches)

I'm not sure the name of this but I saw it on biggest loser... basically, I take a bar and add low weights to the sides and lift it up overhead and hold it for about 1 min. I typically do that at the end of my workout to get my last big of energy out. ;)

06-22-2012, 06:29 AM
Thanks everybody! I will try the flys and look into the incline press. I am also working on increasing the weight on the overhead press. My weak point there is right at the beginning of the lift (or in the pushups at the bottom) which I suspect is connected to my lack of chest/pecs.

I have been practicing squats with a broom handle looking at the Stumptuous videos, but am still a little nervous about doing it with weights.

06-22-2012, 01:12 PM
I have been practicing squats with a broom handle looking at the Stumptuous videos, but am still a little nervous about doing it with weights.

You might want to start with goblet squats if you're feeling uncertain. In that variation, you hold a heavy dumbbell in front of your chest while you squat. Once you max out your hand strength, you'll be ready for barbell squats. (It's more difficult to mess up your form in the goblet variation.)

06-23-2012, 01:21 PM
Bronze, you might look for a cheap standard barbell, the kind that takes the plates with the small 1" (or 3/4"?) hole. Those usually weigh 25 lbs or less, and that would give you a little weight to practice back squats with, while still being light enough that you can handle it, plus you can practice dumping it on grass or a thick carpet/matting without worrying about jacking up the bearings on a good oly barbell. If you have access to a power rack or squat rack, then practice dumping to the pins, now while the weight is light.

06-23-2012, 06:33 PM
Go heavier! Like 6 reps to failure heavy.

Military press, chest press, deadlifts, incline bench, decline presses, dumbell flys...

There are a LOT of exercises that target/use that area. I had the same problem last year. My friend and I affectionately called it "ABRC" or Above boob rib cage ;). Building some muscle in the area will take care of it, for sure :).