How to Increase One Rep Max Bench Press

By Critical Bench

There are many bench press workouts available, the problem is there are too many. This workout created by Critical Bench implements many of these strategies and gives you everything you need to know about the bench press and increasing your max in one place. Whether or not you want bragging rights in the gym, need to build your bench for a specific sport or you are training for competition, the bench press is a vital exercise towards building a better body, and developing upper body strength. Each topic covered below will be included in much greater detail when you order your customized bench workout.

Introduction: The Bench Press

How many times has someone asked you how much you can push press? Probably not too many times but we're willing to bet that you have been asked how much you can bench. Then your answer is taken to judge your total upper body strength. Regardless of the status it carries the bench press is a fundamental weight lifting exercise.

Benchpress Technique

Your grip should be shoulder width apart, with your thumbs wrapping around the bar.

Your feet should be pointing forward,and grounded to the floor. Keep your shoulders, butt, and head touching the bench at all times. A slight arch in your back is mandatory.

Inhale as you lower the weight to your chest in a controlled manner, then exhale as you push the bar upwards. The bar should travel in the path most comfortable.

There are special techniques you can learn that will help you increase your one rep max on max day!

Muscles Used During The Bench press

When performing the bench press you are using your chest, triceps, and shoulder muscles. In order to increase your max in the bench you must strengthen supporting muscles as well. If you slack off on shoulder or triceps days then your chest days will probably lag behind as well. Some specific triceps and shoulder exercises we recommend will help you increase your max.

Stretching & Warm Up

Many people don't stretch before lifting. They think its just something you do before running. Stretching is very important, especially when you are lifting heavy weight week after week and putting strain on your muscles and tendons. By stretching you get oxygen to your muscles, and wake them up for the punishment they are about to endure. When lifting heavy, stretching will help you prevent aching joints and other nuisances that can put an end to your heavy benching days. We'll give you the stretches and warn up routine that keeps your rotator cuffs healthy, loosens your triceps, and prepares you for a big chest day at a the gym.

Don't Overtrain

The most common mistake made by body builders of all levels is overtraining. Using this workout you will train each body part only once per week. When you do not give the muscle time to recuperate you stunt your progress and can in fact loose strength. It is better to take an extra day off than lift a day early. On your chest day you will not have any other workout of any sort this includes cardiovascular training. By adding an additional workout on chest day all you would accomplish would be wearing yourself out. As we mentioned your shoulders and triceps are involved in the bench press and therefore need to be completely healed before your chest day. You do not want to lift triceps the day before chest. Your triceps will be sore and will therefore affect your bench performance. Your personalized workout puts you on an optimal cycle designed to fully recuperate each of your muscle groups. Remember it's not how long you lift but rather how hard you lift.

Training For Strength

As many of you probably know when you do sets with high reps, 12 and up you are training to get cut up or lean. Likewise when you are trying to gain size you do sets with lower reps. If you want to increase your max lift, low reps of 4-6 aren't going to cut it. To build strength you have to push your muscles past the limits. Your main sets will consist of reps between 1-3. Unless you increase the weight and expose your muscle fibers to this type of lifting your max will not increase as rapidly at you would like. Sure it will go up eventually, but if your goal truly is to increase your max in the bench press we have the perfect set, repetition formula for you.

Benchpress Variation

When you do the same thing over and over your body gets used to it and stops responding. You have to surprise your body and muscles and keep to keep them growing. We're sure you've seen the people that come in day after day doing the same exercises with the same weight, and then wondering why they aren't getting stronger. You need to change the exercises you are doing and the order you are doing them in. You also have to surprise your body with different routines. When you order your workout you'll be supplied with all of this including a lifting routine implementing negatives, and 1/2 reps during certain phases of the cycle.


The order in which you perform exercises on a certain day can effect the results of exercises you do later in the work out. You should always perform mass building exercises at the beginning of your workout because that is when you are the strongest. Once these are complete you can go on to sculpting exercises. If however you do them in the wrong order your muscles will already have begun to fatigue and you won't do as well as you had expected. For example if you do cable crossovers for your chest, and then you head for flat bench your weight will drop. Another reason we've seen people do poorly when attempting a high weight on the bench press is the fact that they don't give themselves enough rest between sets. If you're trying to get lean and looking for a cardiovascular workout then it is good to take short breaks between sets. With your workout you will know what order you should be performing exercises in to optimize your bench. You will also find out how long of a rest period between sets will optimize your gains.

Mindset & Preparation

The bench press is a very mental lift. Why is that you can bench 300 but not 315? Does it have to do with the three plates on each side? Lifting can be very mental. Or maybe you can do 295 but not 300, because 300 sounds so much heavier. We'll teach you how to be mentally tough and how you can visualize your success. When you enter the gym you must be ready, we"ll. tell you how successful clients have prepared in the past including diet, rest, and lifestyle.

For more information go to Increase Your Bench Press 50 Lbs in 10 Weeks With A Customized Work Out Program

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