Weight Training Exercises to Strengthen the Pectoral Muscle

There are many different weight exercises to help you tone your pecs.

There are many different weight exercises to help you tone your pecs.

The pectoral muscles -- a fan-shaped group of muscles on your upper chest -- help support and lift your breasts, and make you look better in that low-cut or collar bone-revealing dress. If you want to get strong, toned pecs, you have to do weight training exercises. Cardio will help you lose fat. If you've got some extra jiggle to get rid of, engage in 300 minutes of aerobic exercise each week to lose the fat that's hiding your toned chest. Whatever you do, don't go crazy with the pec exercises; three times per week is enough to see results while avoiding injury from overtraining.

Chest Press

Tone and lift your chest muscles, or pecs, with chest presses. You can do these at the gym with a chest press machine or at home with dumbbells. Lie on the floor or with your back on a stability ball and feet planted on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand while positioning the weights just above your breasts. Use your chest muscles as you push the weights up above you until your arms are fully extended. Lower the dumbbells with control, focusing on letting your pecs power the movement. Do 10 to 12 reps. When the weights start feeling lighter, it's time to begin using heavier weights.

Single-Arm Chest Fly

Work one side of your chest at a time with single-arm chest flyes. Lie on a stability ball or on the floor, while holding a dumbbell in your left hand. Place your right hand on your right hip to stabilize your body during the exercise. Extend your left arm up above you, and then lower it down to your side while keeping a soft bend in your elbow. Lift the weight back above your chest to complete one rep. Perform 10 reps on each side.

Cable Flyers

Stand in front of a cable weight machine at your gym while holding a cable handle in each hand. Position your arms out to your sides at chest level. Place one foot in front of the other in a split-stance, while leaning forward about 20 degrees. Use your chest muscles as you draw your arms in until they're fully extended in front of you with your hands together. With control, slowly bring them back to the starting position. Do 10 to 12 cable flyers to tighten and tone your pecs.

Rows

Dumbbell rows are a simple exercise you can do just about anywhere-- at home, work or the gym. Stand with your feet hip-width apart while holding a dumbbell in each hand. Bend your upper body forward approximately 45 degrees, and bring your elbows up to your sides. Pull the weights up and back as you try to touch your shoulder blades together. Lower the weights to complete one rep. Perform dumbbell rows for one minute to tone your chest.

 

About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.

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