Push workouts are a type of strength training that focus on exercises that involve pushing movements such as push-ups, bench press, and shoulder press. In addition to building muscle mass and strength, push workouts also offer numerous benefits such as improved posture and increased bone density.
In this ultimate guide to push workouts, we will take a deep dive into what they are and how they can help you achieve your fitness goals. We will also share tips on creating the perfect push workout routine, using dumbbells for added resistance, at-home push workouts, and nutrition tips for more effective training sessions.
What Is a Push Workout?
A push workout is a type of upper body workout that involves exercises focused on pushing movements, such as chest press, shoulder press, and tricep extensions. These exercises are beneficial in building muscle mass and upper body strength. For beginners or those who haven’t done a push workout before, it’s important to start with lighter weights and focus on perfecting the technique to prevent injury.
To achieve progressive overload and continue building muscle, it’s recommended to incorporate different variations of exercises and gradually increase the weight over time. Always warm up properly before starting a push workout to get your muscles ready for the intense workout ahead. An effective push workout can provide great results in terms of muscle growth and overall upper body strength.
Benefits of Push Workouts
Push workouts are resistance training sessions that primarily target the pushing muscles of the upper body, such as the chest, shoulders, and triceps. Some benefits of push workouts include:
- Increased muscle strength and size: Push workouts can help to build strength and size in the muscles of the chest, shoulders, and triceps, which can enhance overall upper body strength.
- Improved posture and stability: Push exercises can improve posture and stability by strengthening the upper back and shoulders, which can help to prevent common problems like rounded shoulders and hunched posture.
- Increased calorie burn: Push exercises are typically compound movements that involve multiple muscle groups, which can help to burn more calories and promote weight loss.
- Enhanced athletic performance: Push workouts can improve upper body strength and power, which can benefit athletes who participate in sports like basketball, football, and volleyball.
- Increased bone density: Resistance training like push workouts can help to increase bone density, which can help to prevent osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions.
Overall, push workouts can be an effective way to improve upper body strength, size, and function, and can offer a variety of health and fitness benefits.
Best 5 Push Workouts
A push workout is a type of strength training that focuses on the muscles that push, or extend, your body away from a resistance. This includes the chest, shoulders, and triceps. Here are seven of the best push exercises you can do:
#Barbell Bench Press
The barbell bench press is a popular exercise for building strength and muscle mass in the chest, shoulders, and triceps. To perform a barbell bench press, follow these steps:
- Lie down on a bench with your feet flat on the floor and your eyes positioned under the barbell.
- Grab the barbell with an overhand grip, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Your palms should be facing away from your body.
- Lift the barbell off the rack and hold it directly over your chest, with your arms fully extended.
- Lower the barbell slowly and under control towards your chest, keeping your elbows at a 45-degree angle to your body.
- Pause briefly when the barbell touches your chest, and then push it back up explosively until your arms are fully extended.
- Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.
It’s important to maintain proper form throughout the exercise, and not let your back arch or your elbows flare out too wide. It’s also recommended to use a spotter when performing heavy sets to ensure safety.
#Incline Dumbbell Press
The incline dumbbell press is an exercise that targets the upper chest muscles and also works the shoulders and triceps. Here’s how to perform it:
- Set an incline bench at an angle of around 30-45 degrees.
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand and lie on the bench with your feet firmly on the ground.
- Position the dumbbells at shoulder level with your palms facing forward and your elbows pointing outwards.
- Take a deep breath and lower the dumbbells towards your chest, keeping your elbows at a 45-degree angle.
- Pause briefly and then push the dumbbells back up to the starting position, exhaling as you go.
- Repeat for the desired number of reps.
It’s important to use a weight that challenges you but that you can still control throughout the exercise. Keep your core engaged and maintain a neutral spine throughout the movement.
The shoulder press is a strength-training exercise that primarily targets the muscles in the shoulders, but also engages the muscles in the arms and upper back. To perform a basic shoulder press:
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height, with your palms facing forward.
- Press the weights upward until your arms are fully extended overhead.
- Slowly lower the weights back down to shoulder height.
- Repeat for several repetitions.
It’s important to use proper form when performing the shoulder press to avoid injury. Keep your core engaged, your back straight, and your shoulders down and back throughout the exercise. Start with a weight that is comfortable for you, and gradually increase the weight as you become stronger.
Tricep pushdown is an exercise that primarily targets the triceps muscles, which are located on the back of the upper arms. It is commonly performed using a cable machine with a rope attachment, but can also be done with a straight bar or a V-bar attachment.
To perform a tricep pushdown:
- Stand facing the cable machine with your feet shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
- Grasp the rope or bar attachment with an overhand grip and extend your arms fully down so that your elbows are close to your sides.
- Keeping your upper arms stationary, exhale and push the attachment down towards your thighs using your triceps muscles. You should feel a contraction in your triceps as you do this.
- Hold the contraction for a moment, then inhale and slowly return the attachment to the starting position, maintaining control throughout the movement.
- Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.
It is important to maintain proper form and control throughout the exercise, and to avoid using momentum or swinging the attachment to lift the weight. Additionally, make sure to choose a weight that is challenging but allows you to perform the exercise with proper form.
Dumbbell flyes are an exercise that target the chest muscles, specifically the pectoralis major. To perform dumbbell flyes:
- Lie on a flat bench with your feet flat on the ground, your back pressed against the bench, and a dumbbell in each hand.
- Hold the dumbbells with your palms facing each other and your arms extended straight up above your chest.
- Lower the dumbbells slowly in a wide arc to either side of your chest, keeping a slight bend in your elbows and feeling a stretch in your chest muscles.
- Pause briefly at the bottom of the movement, then lift the dumbbells back up to the starting position by squeezing your chest muscles and exhaling.
- Repeat for your desired number of reps.
It’s important to use a weight that you can control and maintain proper form throughout the exercise. As with any exercise, it’s also important to warm up properly and consult with a medical professional if you have any concerns or preexisting conditions.
Incorporating these exercises into your push workout routine can help you build strength, increase muscle mass, and improve your overall fitness level. However, it’s important to consult with a certified personal trainer or healthcare provider before starting any new exercise program to ensure it is safe and appropriate for your fitness level and health status.
Creating the Perfect Push Workout Routine
Creating the perfect push workout routine requires careful planning and consideration of your fitness goals, current fitness level, and personal preferences. Here are some steps you can take to create an effective push workout routine:
- Define Your Goals: Before creating a workout routine, it’s important to define your fitness goals. Do you want to build strength, improve endurance, or increase muscle size? Your goals will determine the exercises and rep ranges you should focus on.
- Choose Your Exercises: For a push workout, you’ll want to focus on exercises that work your chest, shoulders, and triceps. Some effective exercises include bench press, shoulder press, dips, push-ups, and chest flyes. Choose exercises that target different muscle groups within the push category to ensure that you are hitting all areas evenly.
- Determine Your Rep Ranges: Depending on your goals, you may want to focus on different rep ranges. For strength, you should aim for 1-5 reps per set with heavier weights. For muscle growth, aim for 8-12 reps per set with moderate weight. For endurance, aim for 15+ reps per set with lighter weight.
- Plan Your Workout: Once you have chosen your exercises and rep ranges, it’s time to plan your workout. A typical push workout might include three sets of bench press, three sets of shoulder press, three sets of dips, and three sets of push-ups. You can adjust the number of sets and reps based on your fitness level and goals.
- Warm-Up and Cool-Down: It’s important to warm up before your workout to prevent injury and cool down afterward to aid in recovery. Spend at least five minutes doing light cardio and stretching before your workout, and take five minutes to stretch and foam roll afterward.
- Adjust and Progress: Your workout routine should not be set in stone. As you progress, you should adjust your routine to ensure that you are continuing to challenge your muscles. You can increase weight, reps, or sets as you become stronger.
Remember to also give your muscles time to recover and rest in between workouts. Aim to do a push workout routine 2-3 times per week, and vary your routine to prevent boredom and ensure that you are targeting all areas of your push muscles.
Timing your meals around your workout can also help maximize results.
- Eating a balanced meal that includes protein, carbohydrates, healthy fats, and fiber before a workout can fuel your body with the nutrients it needs to perform at its best.
- After a workout, consuming protein and carbohydrates within 30 minutes can help kickstart muscle recovery.
- Planning ahead and incorporating these nutrition tips into your push workout routine can lead to more effective results.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is it good to train chest shoulders and triceps together?
Yes, it can be beneficial to train chest, shoulders, and triceps together as these muscle groups often work together during upper body exercises. This can also help you make efficient use of your time in the gym.
It is important to ensure that you have proper form and technique during your workout to prevent injury. Additionally, be sure to include rest days in your training schedule to give your muscles time to recover and avoid overtraining.
- Is it better to do chest and shoulders or chest and triceps?
Both combinations of chest and shoulders or chest and triceps can be effective for building strength and muscle, so the choice depends on your fitness goals. The chest and shoulders combination is great for overall upper body strength and mass, while the chest and triceps combination targets the chest muscles more while also hitting the triceps.
To avoid overworking one muscle group, it is recommended to alternate between both combinations in your workout routine.
- How do you structure a push workout?
When structuring a push workout, it’s important to focus on chest, shoulders, and triceps muscles. Begin with dynamic stretches and exercises such as push-ups or shoulder rotations to warm up.
Start with compound exercises like bench press or shoulder press that target multiple muscle groups. Follow up with isolation exercises like tricep extensions or lateral raises to target specific muscles.
Remember to adjust the weight and reps based on your fitness level and goals. And don’t forget to cool down and stretch after the workout to prevent injury and improve flexibility.
Let’s Sum Up
To sum it up, push workouts are a crucial part of any fitness regime that targets your chest, shoulders, and triceps. Push workouts not only help you build strength and endurance but also help tone your muscles and improve your posture. With the right approach and nutrition plan, you can achieve your fitness goals more effectively. Remember to keep challenging yourself with heavier weights and new exercises to avoid hitting a plateau.