2022 Mr. Olympia Runner-up Derek Lunsford Annihilates Chest Workout

derek lunsford chest workout

IFBB Pro bodybuilder Derek Lunsford is back in the gym to improve his physique for the 2023 Olympia. 

After just two weeks after Derek Lunsford’s impressive 2022 Olympia performance, he was back in the gym to improve for the next biggest bodybuilding show of the year. He’s improving his chest for the 2023 Mr. Olympia workout, which we’ll review in this article. 

Derek Lunsford is an International Federation of BodyBuilding and Fitness (IFBB) Pro athlete. He competed in the Men’s 212 division for most of his career but transitioned to the Men’s Open division for the 2022 Olympia. Lunsford beat out the 2020 Men’s 212 champ, Shaun Clarida, to become an Olympia champion of the 212 class in 2021. 

In 2022, fears set in that he couldnn’t make weight again for Men’s 212 division due to his size. Therefore, he was invited to compete in the Men’s Open division. Of course, as history wrote, he crushed it. Lunsford finished runner-up behind the 2022 Mr. Olympia Hadi Choopan

Derek Lunsford announced that he would not be competing at the 2023 Arnold Classic to focus on improving his physique—specifically his chest and quads—so he can, hopefully, claim the Mr. Olympia title later this year. 

And rightfully so. Because Olympia took place towards the end of the year rather than in November, this gave competitors little time to rest and prep their physique for the 2023 season. Therefore, some have opted not to compete in the Arnold Classic.

Derek Lunsford is back in the gym and went through a chest workout to kickstart his 2023 training camp—and recently, Lunsford annihilated a leg workout with the 2019 212 Olympia champ Kamal Elgargni

Full Name: Derek Lunsford
Weight Height Date Of Birth
205-215 lbs. 5’6’’ 1993
Division Era Nationality
212, Men’s Open 2010 American

Derek Lunsford’s Epic Chest Workout 

Derek Lunsford shared his chest workout on his YouTube, which we’ll dive into below. 

Smith Machine Chest Press 

Unsurprisingly, he started his chest workout with a compound movement, the smith machine chest press. He did a few warm-up sets and eventually worked his way up to 4 sets, where Kamal Elgargni was there to motivate him. With some extra motivation, he added a double drop set

The smith machine chest press targets your chest, triceps, and shoulders, emphasizing your chest. The machine will isolate more of your chest than the free-weight barbell bench press, and it’s safer. But it won’t work your stabilizers or core as much. 

Superset: Smith Machine Bench Press and Low Cable Crossover 

Next, the 2021 Men’s 212 Olympia champ superset—exercises back to back—-with low cable crossover. The low cable crossover helps you build complete chest development. This exercise fills out your upper chest, which is essential since a developed upper chest can make your upper body appear much fuller. 

Supersets are beneficial since they let you do more volume in less time and increase your workouts’ intensity. 

Lunsford performed the sets at a slow and controlled tempo. He stated:

“I’m starting to get a better mind-muscle connection. So that way, when I am performing each rep, I can just feel the muscle fibers firing. That’s something I had a big problem with in the past. I would say just this past year, probably from the 2021 to 2022 season, is the first time I felt like I was really firing my chest that much. So now, this year, I feel like it’s firing even better, and I just want to keep going in that direction.” 

Then, he moved on to an accessory movement. 

Peck Deck Flyes

After the superset, Lunsford performed his next chest movement on the peck deck fly. This exercise is excellent for adding volume and size to your pecs. He completed 10-12 reps on this exercise. Typically, it’s more beneficial to use a lighter load and do more reps on accessory movements than compound movements like the bench press. 

To further increase his workload, Lunsford added some pauses as he contracted his chest muscles together to improve his muscles timer under tension

Triceps Dip Presses

The 2022 Mr. Olympia runner-up moved on to a tricep-focused exercise—the triceps dip press. Although, he made some adjustments to make it engage more of his lower pecs. He expressed:

“It can hit the lower pecs too. So am I feeling at the triceps? Sure, I am. First of all, I am facing in the opposite direction. And I am leaning my chest forward over the resistance of the weight. So that way, it’s almost like a decline chest press for me. I just feel this a lot better than I do any other lower chest exercise. Whether it be a bodyweight or a decline pressing movement.”

He added:

“Just by switching the position, leaning the chest over, it is going to hit more of the chest. If I sat more straight up, it would be more of my triceps.”

After this triceps and lower chest extensive movement, Derek Lunsford moved to the final exercise in his chest workout. 

Decline Cable Flyes

He isolated his chest with a few sets of the decline cable fly. And he also tagged in the ab exercises, decline crunches, and leg raises to wrap up his workout. 

The decline cable fly is another excellent exercise for specifically firing up the lower portion of your chest. 

Chest Exercises

Below are the exercises Derek Lunsford did for his chest workout.

Smith Machine Chest Press
Smith Machine Bench Press Superset Low Cable Crossover
Peck Deck Flyes
Triceps Dip Presses
Decline Cable Flyes 

*Note: Derek Lunsford also added in decline crunches and leg raises for his abs at the end of his workout. 

You can watch Derek Lunsford perform his chest workout as a courtesy to his YouTube channel here:

More IFBB Pro Workouts

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As a personal trainer and writer, Terry loves changing lives through coaching and the written word. Terry has a B.S. in Kinesiology and is an American College of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer. He enjoys playing music, reading, and watching films when he's not writing or training.