Chris Bumstead shared wisdom on how he has built one of the best chests in bodybuilding.
Chris Bumstead continues to dominate the gym during his prep for the 2022 Olympia. He is the reigning three-time Classic Physique champion and will enter as the favorite to win four in a row in Las Vegas, Nevada, this December. Chris Bumstead shared videos on his YouTube channel revealing techniques and tips during chest day. Stick around for two complete CBum chest workouts.
Bumstead walked viewers through his chest workout during bulking phase. This is where Bumstead has been in his prep for a few weeks now. Bumstead battled COVID-19 at the beginning of the year but is again back in the gym and looking strong.
|Full Name: Chris Bumstead (Classic Physique Bodybuilder)|
|Weight||Height||Date Of Birth|
|Classic Physique||2010s, 2020s||Canadian|
Chris Bumstead is in Florida and took down this workout at The Revive gym.
CBum Chest Workout
|Incline Press on Smith Machine|
|Seated Cable Fly|
|Incline Machine Press|
|Pec Deck Fly|
Smith Machine Incline Press
The workout began with incline presses on the Smith machine. Bumstead used this as a warmup for the rest of the workout. He likes to use the Smith machine for different reasons. He explained that he likes to squeeze the shoulder blades, allowing the chest to remain engaged on the way down.
“Hurts your shoulders less, it’ll hurt your shoulders less in the long term and it’s effective for your pec.”
Seated Cable Fly
Seated cable flyes were next, and the most important part of this workout is to keep the elbows aligned with the cable. This allows the lifter to get the best results without putting as much strain on the shoulders. Cable flies are meant to hit the upper chest, which is done effectively if everything is in line.
Bumstead performed two sets with a drop set before moving on.
“ou get a full range of motion. Full stretch, you’re strong in the pressing movement. But you also have the fly together with the cable still having tension for the contraction.”
Incline Machine Press
Chris Bumstead continued with three sets of 10 reps with three plates on the incline press machine. Bumstead skipped out on push-ups and decided to take on this machine. He lowered the seat to press higher and get a bigger range of motion.
Pec Deck Fly
The pec deck fly was the final exercise of this workout. Bumstead crushed three sets before ending the day.
“After a set where you fail, you stop for a second and push as far as you can. Hopefully you can get half a rep, contract whatever muscle i.e. pec in this instance and just squeeze in hard flexing your muscle as hard as you can – at least like ten seconds.”
Chris Bumstead continues to make improvements in the gym despite being at the top of Classic Physique. To this point, he has been unbeatable on stage and it will be interesting to see if this trend continues.
Chris Bumstead’s Olympia Chest Workout
The journey to Mr. Olympia 2023 is starting for most athletes, and as part of the prep, Chris Bumstead invites coach Hany Rambod to a chest workout. CBum is the current face of the Mr. Olympia Classic Physique and is aiming for his fifth title. Here’s a look at CBum’s chest workout.
|High to Low Cable Crossover|
|Reverse Grip Incline Dumbbell Press|
|Neutral Grip Incline Dumbbell Press|
|Horizontal Chest Press Machine|
|Machine Bench Press|
|Super Decline Chest Press Machine|
High to Low Cable Crossover
The high-to-low cable crossover is a great way to build your chest muscles. This isolation exercise targets pecs, delts, serratus anterior, and triceps. The cable machine keeps an almost constant tension on your muscles for the entire range of motion.
Chris Bumstead starts chest day with this isolation exercise before moving on to other, more complex routines. This study shows that isolation movements are a great way to stimulate weaker muscles before continuing to more complex exercises for training (1).
Reverse Grip Incline Dumbbell Press
Next in his routine, CBum does an incline dumbbell press with a reverse grip. This exercise targets your pecs, delts, biceps, and triceps. Using a reverse grip for presses focuses on building your upper pecs more.
Before starting this movement, Chris Bumstead talks about how doing dumbbell presses on a flat bench hurts his shoulders. So coach Rambod has him do them at an incline. He starts with 105 pounds dumbbells in both hands before dropping the weight for the next variation.
Neutral Grip Incline Dumbbell Press
A neutral grip incline dumbbell press works on your upper body muscles, including the pecs and triceps. This exercise also recruits your anterior delts to an extent. A neutral grip minimizes shoulder involvement overall, which helps with the pain that Chris Bumstead mentions above.
As part of his exercise tips, coach Rambod has Chris Bumstead use lighter weight dumbbells for a neutral grip – palms facing each other – increasing the load on your chest. Chris Bumstead uses 90 pound dumbbells before doing more reverse grip dumbbell presses.
Horizontal Chest Press Machine
The horizontal chest press targets your chest, shoulders, and triceps. This exercise simulates the barbell bench press, but you sit in the machine in an upright position. Using a close grip with your palms facing down is best to build your chest with this exercise.
CBum’s chest workout includes this exercise on a plate-loaded horizontal chest press machine. He says that when using a narrow grip, he gets more pec stretching and feels the exercise more in his pecs. Coach Rambod offers extra tips on using a narrow grip and ups the weight for more reps before moving to the next routine.
Machine Bench Press
The machine bench press is a great way to replicate doing a bench press to focus on your mid to upper chest muscles. It’s a great way to improve your bench press form and is considered an isolation exercise due to the fixed plane of motion.
Doing the machine bench press improves your stability and is safer. It can be done on an incline or flat bench to emphasize different parts of your chest. This study shows the different muscle stimulation of each (2). Chris Bumstead does this movement on an inclined bench using an overhand grip.
Super Decline Chest Press Machine
Another chest press machine that Chris Bumstead uses to train is the super decline chest press. The movement trajectory of this machine emphasizes your lower pecs. Rambod talks about the position of your hands when using this machine and adjusting your seat for the right range of motion.
The super decline chest press works on your pecs, triceps, and anterior delts. It’s considered less stressful for the back and shoulders as the trajectory switches the stress to your lower pecs. Chris Bumstead does multiple sets before going to the final routine for chest day.
The machine fly is a safe and effective way to target your chest muscles without worrying about stability. It isolates your chest and puts constant tension on your muscles throughout the range of motion. In this routine, ensure the machine handles are at chest height to maintain a good posture.
CBum rounds off his chest day with this one and does iso holds guided by Coach Rambod to induce muscle hypertrophy further.
- Giannakopoulos, K., Beneka, A., Malliou, P., & Godolias, G. (2004). Isolated vs. complex exercise in strengthening the rotator cuff muscle group. Journal of strength and conditioning research, 18(1), 144–148. https://doi.org/10.1519/1533-4287(2004)018<0144:ivceis>2.0.co;2
- Trebs, A. A., Brandenburg, J. P., & Pitney, W. A. (2010). An electromyography analysis of 3 muscles surrounding the shoulder joint during the performance of a chest press exercise at several angles. Journal of strength and conditioning research, 24(7), 1925–1930. https://doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181ddfae7