This guy at school challenged me to a bench press contest and of course I accepted. I’m a pretty good bencher, but I want to make sure that I do my best. I don’t want to look stupid in front of everyone after school. What kinds of tips can you give me for improving my bench fast? I only have two weeks.
I’m all for testing the limits of your strength, so long as you do it in a way that’s safe and respectful to your body. Too many people attempt maximum lifts without so much as even warming up beforehand and pay the price with an injury.
So before I give you any advice on improving your bench, I request that you and your challenger each spend a few minutes warming up before engaging in your contest. Likewise, make sure you both have good spotters, there to catch the weight in case your muscles fail.
Now, as for increasing your bench, there are a couple of things you can do, although the time in which you have to do them is short. Two weeks equals just four to five bench press workouts, but that’s enough to make some change in your maximum lift.
I recommend working your triceps via close grip bench presses and lying dumbbell French curls, as your triceps play a huge role when benching. Also, try a variation on the pull-up in which you focus on bringing your torso parallel with the floor. The lats also play a bi role in benching, so keeping them strong is key.
Below is a workout I’ve devised to help you increase your bench. Perform it every three days. Good luck!
|Big Bench Routine|
|Close grip bench press||4||10-8-5-3|
Lying French press w/dumbbells
|Leaning pull-up||3||To failure|
|Power rack partial bench*||4||6-5-4-3|
* Position the pins in the rack so that the bar stops just short of reaching your chest