How To Bench Press 315

Learn how to increase your bench press with Show Up Fitness. Bench Press 315 program.

4-years ago I wrote a BADASS article for stack.com on HOW TO BENCH PRESS 315 Today, we're going to revisit this program and make it a little better!

Before we get into the workout, let's identify the muscles engaged and actions that are taking place around the shoulder:

Chest: The pectoralis major is the agonist during the Bench due to horizontal adduction.

Tricep Brachii: The triceps help the pecs press the weight by extending your elbows.

Anterior Deltoids: Due to horizontal adduction, the anterior deltoid is synergistic to the pecs.

Latissimus Dorsi: At the bottom of the Bench (with the humerus in full extension), you'll find that by flexing the lats, the humerus will move forward. The lats play a small role in the bench press, but they are engaged. If you find your weak point at the bottom of the press, look at the lats for strengthening.

Serratus Anterior: The scapulae's are supposed to be “locked down” while pressing, but you will find the scaps slighting coming off the ribcage (protraction.)

Rotator Cuff: The SITS (Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor & Subscapularis) are stabilizing the glenohumeral joint (one of four shoulder joints along with the AC, ST, & SC.) If these stabilizing muscles cannot due their job, the larger movement muscles will take over the movement resulting in fault movement competency. Make sure to do a few foam roll push-ups and downward dogs before you begin.

The Glutes: The Gluteus Maximus externally rotates, abducts, extends, and posteriorly tilts the pelvis. A common benching error is an arch at the low back (not confused with thoracic extension.) To avoid this dangerous position for your lumbar region of the spine (remember there's 7-cervical vertebrae, 12-thoracic, and 5-lumbar) you want to squeeze your glutes to prevent any arching – your ass should never come off the bench!

How To Bench Press 315

Let's pretend you just hit a NEW BENCH PR of 295- so close to three plates! This plan will help add 20-pounds in the next month. REMEMBER, DO NOT MAX OUT MORE THAN 1x a month (elite lifters will max out 1-2x per year.) This program will have you benching 3x per week, so make sure to even it out by hitting your back & legs at least 2x. For the next month, we want you to avoid any overhead pressing. You can target your shoulders via landmine presses & lateral raises.

WEEK 1:

Here's my WARM-UP routine before every BENCH DAY. I'd also encourage to stretch the lats via horizontal adduction. If the lats are overactive (not able to get into 160-degrees of flexion), a 20-30 second static stretch beforehand will tone them down allowing for greater horizontal adduction pressing power.

Workout 1 – International Chest Day: Monday

295 = 1rm, 250lbs = ~85% (5-rep max), ~225 = 75% (10-rep max), ~195 = 65% (15-rep max)

  • 1) Bench Press – 5×1 @85% – resting 5-minutes (work on a 1-2 second hold at the bottom and then max velocity concentrically..)

    2) Bench Press – 2×2 @125% (heavy eccentrics take 335lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.)

    3) Incline Dumbbells – 3×8

    a) Face Pulls 3×12

    4) Bridge Press – 2×15

    a) Push-Ups AMRAP

    5) Triceps Extensions 5×10 resting 1-2 minutes

    Workout 2 – Thursday

    1) Bench Press – 5×5 @75% – resting 3-minutes (Working on developing power by pressing as fast as you can. Slow and controlled during the eccentric portion.)

    2) Bench Press – 2×3 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) LAST REP, HOLD WITH EYES CLOSED FOR 10-20 SECONDS.

    3) Single Arm Incline Dumbbells – 4×10

    a) Banded Face Pulls 3×20

    4) Bench Press 2xAMRAP 225

    a) Planks 1-2 minute

    5) Bench Press 1xAMRAP 135

    a) Side Planks

Workout 3 – Saturday

1) Incline Press – 3×6 – resting 3-minutes (Working on developing power by pressing as fast as you can. Slow and controlled during the eccentric portion.)

2) Bench Press – 3×1 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) Warm up for 1-2 sets beforehand.

3) Single Arm Flat Dumbbells – 3×10

a) Single Arm Face Pulls 3×10

4) Banded Push-Ups 3xAMRAP

a) Plate Front Raises Planks 3×10-15

5) Walk at an incline for 10-20-minutes

Week 2 Workout 1 – International Chest Day: Monday

295 = 1rm, 250lbs = ~85% (5-rep max), ~225 = 75% (10-rep max), ~195 = 65% (15-rep max)

1) Bench Press – 5×5 with 275 (forced reps) – resting 5-minutes (work on a 1-2 second hold at the bottom and then max velocity concentrically.)

2) Bench Press – 2×2 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs)

3) Incline Dumbbells – 3×8

a) Push-Ups 3xAMRAP

4) Bridge Press – 2×15

5) Triceps Extensions 5×10 resting 1-2 minutes

a) Planks

Workout 2 – Thursday

1) Bench Press – 5×5 @75% – resting 3-minutes

2) Bench Press – 2×3 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) LAST REP, HOLD WITH EYES CLOSED FOR 10-20 SECONDS.

3) Single Arm Incline Dumbbells – 4×10

a) Banded Face Pulls 3×20

4) Bench Press 2xAMRAP 185

a) Planks 1-2 minute

5) Bench Press 1xAMRAP 135

a) Side Planks

Workout 3 – Saturday

1) Incline Press – 3×10 – resting 3-minutes (Working on developing power by pressing as fast as you can. Slow and controlled during the eccentric portion.)

2) Bench Press – 3×1 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) Warm up for 1-2 sets beforehand.

3) Single Arm Flat Dumbbells – 3×10

a) Single Arm Face Pulls 3×10

4) Banded Push-Ups 3xAMRAP

a) Plate Front Raises Planks 3×10-15

5) Walk at an incline for 10-20-minutes

Week 3 – Workout 1 – International Chest Day: Monday

295 = 1rm, 250lbs = ~85% (5-rep max), ~225 = 75% (10-rep max), ~195 = 65% (15-rep max)

1) Bench Press – 5×1 with 275 (DEADSTOP / SPEED) – resting 5-minutes (work on a 1-2 second hold at the bottom and then max velocity concentrically.)

2) Bench Press – 2×1 @130% (heavy eccentrics 350lbs)

3) Incline Dumbbells – 3×6

a) Face Pulls

4) Banded Push-Ups – 3×10

5) Triceps Extensions 5×10 resting 1-2 minutes

a) Planks

Workout 2 – Thursday

1) Bench Press – 5×5 @225lbs – resting 3-minutes (USE STOPPERS & ONLY PRESS THE TOP 1/3rd of the PRESS)

2) Bench Press – 2×2 @120% (heavy eccentrics take 335lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) LAST REP, HOLD WITH EYES CLOSED FOR 10-20 SECONDS.

3) Incline Dumbbells – 3×6

a) Banded Face Pulls 3×20

4) Bench Press 1xAMRAP 225 rest 3-minutes

a) Planks 1-2 minute

5) Bench Press 1xAMRAP 205 rest 3-minutes

a) Side Planks

6) Bench press 1xAMRAP 185 rest 3-minutes

7) Bench Press 1xAMRAP 135

Workout 3 – Saturday

1) Bench Press – 3×8 @135lbs – resting 3-minutes (Working on developing power by pressing as fast as you can. Slow and controlled during the eccentric portion.)

2) Bench Press – 3×1 @110% (heavy eccentrics take 315lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) Warm up for 1-2 sets beforehand.

3) Bridge Press – 3×10

a) Single Arm Face Pulls 3×10

4) Banded Push-Ups 3xAMRAP

a) Plate Front Raises Planks 3×10-15

Week 4 – Workout 1 – International Chest Day: Monday

295 = 1rm, 250lbs = ~85% (5-rep max), ~225 = 75% (10-rep max), ~195 = 65% (15-rep max)

1) Bench Press – Get to your first working set of 275 THEN& 275 x 1, 245 x 1, 225 x1, 135×5 FAST AS POSSIBLE. REPEAT FOR A TOTAL OF 6-SETS.

2) Incline Dumbbells – 3×6

a) Face Pulls

3) Bench Press 3×135 x AMRAP with feet straight out in front of you for core engagement.

4) Triceps Extensions 5×10 resting 1-2 minutes

Workout 2 – Thursday

1) Bench Press – 5×5 @185lbs- resting 3-minutes (USE STOPPERS & ONLY PRESS THE TOP 1/3rd of the PRESS)

2) Bench Press – 2×3 @120% (heavy eccentrics take 335lbs and slowly bring the bar to chest. This requires a spotter to lift the weight back up to the starting position.) LAST REP, HOLD WITH EYES CLOSED FOR 10-20 SECONDS.

3) Flat Single Arm Dumbbells – 3×12

a) Face Pulls 3×20

4) 5-minutes on the clock AS MANY PUSH-UPS AS POSSIBLE.

Workout 3 – Saturday

1) Bench Press – 3×3 @245- resting 3-minutes (Working on developing power by pressing as fast as you can. Slow and controlled during the eccentric portion.)

2) Bridge Press – 3×10 (save 2-3 reps in the tank)

3) Banded Push-Ups 3x Save 2-3 reps in the tank (Do Not Go To Fatigue)

a) Plate Front Raises Planks 3×10-15

Wednesday 1-RM BENCH DAY (take Tuesday OFF, Do lower body Monday.)

Warm-Up

Set 1- 135 x10

Set 2- 185 x5

Set 3 – 225 x 2-3

Set 4 – 275 x1

Set 5 – 315 PERSONAL RECORD

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