Push And Pull Your Way To A Bigger Chest And Back With This Workout
Save this push/pull session for your next visit to the gym
Anyone who’s spent time in the weights room will know their way around an upper-body workout and will have enjoyed the benefits that come from training your top half. We’re talking increased muscle mass, better mobility and, of course, carrying heavy bags of groceries with ease.
One of the most popular ways to structure training your upper body is a push/pull workout, which targets the muscles worked when you push (chest, shoulders and triceps) and pull (back and biceps). You can dedicate an entire session to each movement pattern, as with this push workout and this pull workout, or you can combine the two into one all-round upper-body strengthening workout, like the one below, put together by fitness trainer Cameron Ahouse.
The workout requires dumbbells, a Smith machine and a weight bench. Select a weight that is heavy enough to challenge you throughout, but not so heavy that you find you can’t finish the routine or that your form suffers.
Watch Ahouse’s form carefully before taking on this workout, and if you’re unsure about anything, brush up with our exercise guides linked to below or ask one of your gym’s PTs. Poor form can lead to muscle strain and injury, as well as not getting all the potential muscle-building benefits from the work you’re putting in.
Ahouse doesn’t include a warm-up in his video, but you should never go straight into an intense weights workout like this one cold. If you don’t have a routine, commit this gym warm-up to memory.
Watch Cameron Ahouse’s Push/Pull Workout
@cameronahouse ♬ Princess Diana - Ice Spice & Nicki Minaj
For the first two moves, Ahouse performs three sets of eight reps. For the supersets, it’s four sets of 10 reps.
Movements In Cameron Ahouse’s Push/Pull Workout
- Dumbbell incline bench press
- One-arm row
- Feet-elevated pull-up
- Hammer press
- Lateral raise
- Dumbbell shrug
This workout follows the principles of hypertrophy training so it will help you build muscle, as long as you enable your body to recover well with proper rest and nutrition. This meal plan for muscle gain has plenty of ideas for healthy meals and high-protein snacks, or if you’re pressed for time and have the disposable income, meal prep services make it easier to get the nutrients you need to support your training.
Get the Coach Newsletter
Sign up for workout ideas, training advice, reviews of the latest gear and more.
Lois Mackenzie is a fitness writer working on news, features, reviews and buying guides for Coach and sister site Fit&Well. Lois is a hill walker and avid runner who is training for her first marathon. Before joining Coach, Lois worked as a senior SEO reporter at Newsquest Media Group.