We see people strutting around the gym with mountains of muscle on them, looking impeccable (pun intended) and all, and we’ve secretly wanted to be like them.
We spend countless hours focusing on chest exercises on more days and yet, while we have seen some sort of improvement, we don’t notice significant gains that equal to the time we’ve spent on that bench press.
So, you ask: what the heck am I doing wrong? Am I really just not meant to have a pecs-tacular chest like them? Am I destined to be a sheet of plywood forever?
Slow down and take a deep breath! It’s just because you’ve turned chest day into chest week and solely focusing on your pecs is making it harder for you to activate them for peak definition.
Extending your exercise repertoire by training other muscle groups can prevent any stalling in terms of muscle building and fitness and if you just hear me out, I promise it’ll make all the difference to your current dilemma!
What Should I Workout after Chest Day?
So, now we know that we should be working out on other muscle groups to help us define our chest. The next problem is: what muscle group comes after Chest Day?
Now most, if not all, of us have gone through the big mistake of exercising more than one major muscle group in the same workout or on back to back days.
What we realized too late was when we went all out with the first muscle group, we ended up tired and lacked a significant amount of intensity when focusing on the muscles we worked on next.
Given this, it’s vital to know what muscle groups can and cannot go together throughout the week as you work out.
Is There a Best Muscle Group to Work on After Chest Day? If so, What is it?
Some gym-goers would urge you to work on the muscles opposite your chest and that is your back. Others would tell you to train the muscle group far from your torso and those are your legs.
But none of them will recommend you to crunch those numbers with your shoulders and arms right after Chest Day.
The largest muscle groups found in our body are in our legs while the back is the muscle group directly opposite to our chest which helps train our arms. Whichever of these two muscle groups you’d like to work back to back with Chest Day is all about your personal comfort and preference.
With all the things I’ve mentioned earlier, at the end of the day, I’d recommend doing Back Day after Chest Day to give your pecs and triceps a break without breaking momentum in your upper body.
While I find it to be not much of a problem to work on legs after chest day, I find that I grow more evenly distributed muscle on my upper torso when I train both chest and back on succeeding days.
But the chest and back are all found in the upper torso and it’s sore all over after Chest Day.
Yes, you’re right about the first part. However, they are different muscle groups and different exercises can target them without having to stress out your chest muscles.
Your Chest Day focuses on your front as well as your triceps while Back Day lasers in on, well you guessed it, your back! Oh, and also your biceps.
But simply being sore isn’t an excuse not to exercise. Not straining the same muscle groups every single day is the key.
The soreness you feel are micro-tears in your muscles that need time to heal. It’s standard practice to give sore muscles at least a day of rest in order for them to recuperate and grow, so you can go hard on exercising them next time.
Is it bad to train Shoulders after chest day? What About Arms after chest day?
Many discourage training shoulders and arms right after your chest routine. This is mainly because it’s unhealthy for your muscles to be overly stressed.
Your anterior delts that are found in the shoulders assist in any movements involving the chest while your triceps are used for any overhead pressing motions.
Overworking these muscles may lead to longer rest periods thanks to muscle strain which can effectively undo any progress you’ve done at the gym.
Should Back Day be Done After or Together with Chest Day?
Honestly, it’s all up to you!
There’s been very little qualm as to working on your back together or after your chest as long as you keep in mind that it’s proven that a grueling chest workout will leave your body less enthusiastic with your succeeding back workout if you should choose to work out back and chest on the same day.
Doing Chest and Back, back to back in the same workout will help you get the hardest and heaviest workouts out of the way for the week.
You also have nothing to worry about stressing out the same muscle groups since those found in the chest don’t interact with the ones found in your back.
How many days a week should I work my chest out?
Depending on how many days a week you’re hitting the gym (Spoiler alert:Science doesn’t recommend training every day!), the suggested number of days you ought to focus on your pectorals should be once a week. So one chest day a week it ought to be.
You can do Chest Day more than once a week, provided that you ensure your chest muscles get at least a day of rest and all the other muscle groups in your body gets the love they deserve while you’re at the gym. Do not neglect training your biceps and triceps, your legs, abs, or any other muscle group just to train chest.
My thoughts – What muscle group I work after chest day
After chest day I will either choose to work my legs or I will choose to work my back. I typically will choose to work legs, the reason for this is because I like to give my upper body a day of rest so that I can hit my back as hard as I need to in order to get the growth that I want out of my lats and back muscles.
When I train my chest I do a lot of upper body movements such as chest targeted dips, and other exercises that tend to train my entire upper body, so a day of rest is needed for me. Besides leg day is my 2nd favorite muscle to train. What’s my first?… biceps.
Related Reading: What Muscles Do Dips Work?
Knowing how to split up body parts and muscle groups for optimal training is vital.
Knowing how to put together a workout that will actually work so you can achieve your body and fitness goals is just as essential as the act of busting your butt out with those weights.
Remember: don’t just train hard, train smart!
Have you had any problems with your workouts after Chest Day? Got a comment, a suggestion, an insight, or a question about this article? If so, we’d love to hear from you. Feel free to leave a comment below or contact us!