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How a Skinny Guy Built a BIG Chest! ctm magazine



If you want to build a big chest and feel that you’re too skinny to do it, you need to watch this. In this video, you will see how a hardgainer built a bigger chest and be able to copy the exact same workout tips and tricks to make the same type of gains.

The first important point is to make sure that you are performing the bench press if you want to grow a bigger chest. This key compound exercise for the chest is one of the most effective for packing on size and strength. The big thing that Jesse did, however, was increasing the frequency of how often he was benching and continuing to progressively overload the exercise as well.

However, it is well known that it’s daily easy to stall on the bench press and see limited progress, so it is important to explore other exercises to build a big chest too. Extra exercises will not only allow for the opportunity to explore adduction of the chest, but incorporate different muscle building techniques as well. To grow muscle, progressive overload is not the only route you should take, but you should also include metabolic stress as well as a focus on the eccentrics.

Taking a powerbuilding approach allows for you to explore the avenues of strength in the compound lifts, such as the bench press, and build the most muscle possible using isolation exercises that allow for the use of different muscle building techniques with moves like the cable press, cable crossovers, and the cable saw.

Next, you need to emphasize a serious focus on the upper chest. You might not realize this, but the overall size of the pecs is greatly influenced by the upper, clavicular portion. A lagging upper chest will lead to less than ideal overall pec development and make them look bottom-heavy. So, it is important to make sure you attack this area effectively. The way that Jesse did this was by incorporating a 2:1 exercise ratio. For every chest exercise he did that was not focused on the upper chest, he did two exercises specifically targeting that area. The extra volume directed towards the upper chest made a huge difference in growth. Some of the exercises of choice were low-to-high crossovers, incline dumbbell bench press, upper chest pullovers, and decline pushups.

Now, to get a bigger wider chest, you have to explore full range of motion to engage the all-important stretch range of each exercise. We know that many muscle groups respond great to stretch overload (such as the traps and the calves) and the chest is one of them. That means we need to be aware of and focus on the stretch portion of each exercise. On an exercises such as the dumbbell bench press, this means making surer that at the bottom of the rep, the dumbbell needs to be touching the outside of the chest. Another good chest exercise for exploring this stretch is the cable crossover.

So now that we know the importance of getting a stretch on the pecs through an exercises full range of motion, is there a way we can reinforce that? Well, there is a great way to do that actually, and it is through the use of pause reps. Paused reps are great not only for removing momentum from a lift as well as increasing the time under load, but also reinforcing full range of motion.

On an exercise like the dumbbell bench press, holding the dumbbells at the bottom of the rep for a 2-3 count will accentuate the stretch you feel in your pecs. This technique is also great for a chest exercise like the high-to-low crossover. Unlike a standard db fly, you’re not placing your anterior shoulder capsule into a vulnerable position lacking support. Just make sure that when you are doing a chest dip, you don’t go too low that you end up putting your shoulders in a vulnerable position.

To round out the appearance of the chest, you are going to to want to target the lower chest as well. I put together a whole video detailing how to target this area to get defined pecs that you can check out via the link below.

If you are looking for a step by step program for building a bigger chest and ripped athletic body, follow the exact plan that Jesse used by heading to athleanx.com via the link below and get the ATHLEAN-X Training System. Every workout and meal is laid out in step by step fashion to make sure there is no guesswork along the way to a new you.

For more chest workouts and exercises to get a bigger chest, be sure to subscribe to our channel here on YouTube via the link below and remember to turn on your notifications so that you never miss a new video when it’s published.

The Lower Chest Solution (GET DEFINED PECS!) – https://youtu.be/wMmy2MlH55U
Build Ripped Athletic Muscle here – http://athleanx.com/x/my-workouts
Subscribe to this channel here – http://youtube.com/user/jdcav24

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47 Comments

  • ATHLEAN-X™ on June 5, 2022

    NEW “FAST ACTION” Q&A – Leave your most burning question about this video or any other training, PT or nutrition question within the first 2 hours of this video’s release (AS A SEPARATE COMMENT!!) and I will pick 8 to get a detailed reply from me right here in the comments. Answers will be posted within the first 24-48 hours of you leaving the question. Good luck!

  • Michael Maier on June 5, 2022

    I don't want Jesse's Girl, I want Jesse's BEARD! Mine curls and has too much gray.

  • MANDLENKOSI on June 5, 2022

    Thank you i needed this.Athlean-x for life.

  • SuperSaiyan Zero on June 5, 2022

    Hi Jeff I have been having pain in the shoulders when doing weighted dips at home on a dip stand, shoulder width. I do weighted chin ups as well but they don't cause me any pain. The first few sets of dips are particularly brutally painful but eventually I get into it. I do basic shoulder warm ups and stretching before dips, and I do my first 2-3 sets without the weight and then pyramid. I've checked my form and it seems to be fine. SO I went to my doctor for my regular labs and for this pain and he told me to strengthen my external rotation. I think I need to strengthen the teres minor and infraspinatus based on the information he gave me. The exercises in the print out are fine, but I'm wondering if there's anything else I can do for specific exercises. My chest, lats and biceps are very strong, and my front delts are very strong. I have been lifting on and off for 16 years. The shoulder joint is somewhat complex to me when you account for all the forces applies to the muscles related to it. Any exercises to help with this problem/and or warmups?

    ( Thanks for reading and thanks for the videos and no I don't do face pulls and yes I will start now)

  • Josh C on June 5, 2022

    Great video showing all of the variations! Thanks guys. On the high to low cross over, is there a "best" angle to push down towards, like towards the ground, or is it best to vary the angle, like straight down to straight out? You forgot to mention one thing though, also buy smaller shirts, which Jesse seems to have accomplished too!! On that note, how about new Athlean-X shirt that says "I USED TO BE THE OLD JESSE TOO!".

  • Lloyd Braun on June 5, 2022

    Jeff will get to all your comments in his 5th lifetime

  • Sanju Deep on June 5, 2022

    Wow, pretty cool how Jesse looks better than Jeff now lol.

  • sam sim on June 5, 2022

    Alternate title How to milk jessie

  • J.D. Mc. on June 5, 2022

    I'd love to see a Best of Calves exercises.

  • e e on June 5, 2022

    Jeff, how do you train? What is your split? And how do you construct your workouts? And how do you think you think we (as viewers) should construct them? Can you please reply to this comment or even something better that would help me and many others, make a video about it. Thank you!

  • knowledge on June 5, 2022

    You always giving great information thank you I did push-up exercises from your thing that you had you give great information keep doing what you doing I like everything that you doing man God bless you and your journey in life God bless everything that you do thank you for all the great information

  • Kristian Spot on June 5, 2022

    When it comes to bodyweight, high / elevated push-ups are quite effective for building good chest.

  • Hi Jeff. Am Vickie and am a girl! I really like your videos and all the knowledge you share with us. I am currently trying to work out with the home work out you suggested during covid lockdown period. I wonder though is this kind of work out appropriate for a girl? And if it is i think i dont recover so fast so i decided to keep 2 days distance between training days. Is it ok? Or is it not gonna work? I dont want to be arnold i just want to gain some strength and stop being the slim fat type of girl. I dont eat junk but i guess my nutrition plan is not perfect either but am trying to keep a mediterranean nutrition plan as much as possible. I would really appreciate your feedback. Thanks

  • Paul bijdeswahthuis on June 5, 2022

    Hey Jeff i am 56 years old. Do m y muscles still grow ?

  • Noel Noni on June 5, 2022

    Jesse still doesn’t have a big chest. Clickbait. It’s decent though

  • Rip Roaring Garage on June 5, 2022

    Day 3 of me working out! I would like to get your input on my case, since I do have a broken neck andback. But I want to get better, and look better too.

  • Jermaine Clarke on June 5, 2022

    Good stuff

  • Gurshaan Basra on June 5, 2022

    I wanna know Jesse's chest workout

  • Miguel Reyes on June 5, 2022

    What's the difference between Max Size and Old School Iron? They both are designed to develop muscle mass. Which is better?

  • wa7eedme10 on June 5, 2022

    Is it just me or the beard or Jessi really started to look bigger than Jeff !!

  • Karl Bodmer on June 5, 2022

    Hey Jeff, this is my story since I started following this channel in january of this year. I weighed around 350 lbs, and I started to follow your tips and also took diet and workout plan from site Next level Diet . In first month I lost 17 lbs, in second month I lost 14 lbs… for now I lost almost 70 lbs and I am feeling great and so strong. If you are beginner, take some online diet as I did, it will help you 🙂

  • Thank You Nature on June 5, 2022

    I want to train but found it difficult to gain muscle overall because of my hypermobility disorder. Is there any way around this other than swimming?

  • sage4now Ty on June 5, 2022

    Jesse’s chest looks awesome!! Way to go!!

  • Anna on June 5, 2022

    Hi Jeff
    I heard buckwheat could increase muscle gain. Is it true?

  • FreaQo on June 5, 2022

    Can only understand half of what Jesse is saying. Give him a mic next time lol

  • Ross on June 5, 2022

    One thing that helped me was ditching the bench/barbell and doing just dumbell exercises for a month to see if my strength on the bench would improve later. You have to work a lot harder with dumbells because they activate more stabilizer muscles.

  • Arithen on June 5, 2022

    Jesse is legitimately almost bigger than Jeff now. Absolutely incredible transformation! The key take away here is that it took YEARS of dedication to achieve. Terrific work!

  • Wayne Venables on June 5, 2022

    So impressed with the change in Jesse since he started lifting !

  • Phoenix Protocol on June 5, 2022

    Jeeeeez Jesse’s like almost just as jacked as Jeff… so many J’s

  • Que te importa on June 5, 2022

    The perfect glute workout? 🥺

  • Bradbo3 on June 5, 2022

    Watching Jesse’s transformation is awesome and another reason this is my go to channel for working out. Even at 52 I get after it, but smartly because of this channel. Btw Im proud of Jesse’s progress!!!! Way to go kid!!!!

  • The Hawks Flock! on June 5, 2022

    In June 2018 I was 170 and could bench 225,
    Now June 2022 I weigh 160 and bench 135.
    All I needed to do was keep getting injured!

    Follow me for more tips

  • Рома Пончик on June 5, 2022

    3:39 Why he hold it not parallel?

  • criceto on June 5, 2022

    If he is natural, Jesse is not truy an hd he archived good results

  • Lex Fauser on June 5, 2022

    😀😁🤩🥰😍❤👍👏💪🏋‍♂️

  • CJ on June 5, 2022

    I know its past 2hours but can you cover weight gain for tall guys? What movements to stick to and the importance of nutrition for tall guys. I'm 6"4 and also a hard gainer would love to get some feedback on a tall guys
    "best friend" when it comes to Gaining size. According to the facts I need around 208Grams of protein a day… that expensive 😅 Much love for what you're doing Dr. Cavaliere #ATHLEAN-X

  • Patrick Murphy on June 5, 2022

    Hey Jesse,
    What exercises are you doing to get all that hypertrophy on your beard? LOL 😜

  • gabrielgv0619 on June 5, 2022

    "Big?" Aren't we getting a little carried away now?

  • Joe Haywood on June 5, 2022

    hey jeff, what's your thought on Kneesovertoes guy?

  • SENSHI 戦士 SENAD on June 5, 2022

    Jessie needs to shave…

  • M. S. on June 5, 2022

    No matter how big Jesse gets, I hope he never loses that sense of humor!

  • clamum on June 5, 2022

    Jesse gives us skinnies some inspiration and hope we won't be like it forever.

    I gained 35 lbs (total, not just muscle) in 2020 after starting to lift, with super low level of test and 4 hours of sleep a night.

    But I lost a bunch throughout 2021 and just now am slowly gaining it back. Because…

    I think in many cases the hardest thing for skinnies to do is eat enough. It doesn't matter what you're doing in the gym if you're not eating enough. And I think many people think they're eating more than they actually are. STRICTLY and honestly counting calories can be key.

  • Mr Will on June 5, 2022

    Jesse has some mass on him now

  • Zacharias Kilpatrick on June 5, 2022

    But the real question is, how did such a skinny guy grow such a big beard?

  • Shamanbear Two on June 5, 2022

    We all love Jesse but do you have any other success stories? I haven't been Jesse's age since Reagan won the White House.

  • Arvind Bhunjun on June 5, 2022

    Hi Jeff was wondering if you could do a video on cortisol and why it is bad

  • Luis Montes on June 5, 2022

    I personally experienced that doing incline bench press made my chest pop out more, I did alot of flat and decline bench and my chest was ok but once I started the incline I noticed a good change on my chest and I'm still doing incline but everyone is different , just my experience.

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