Jeff Cavaliere Reacts to Chris Bumstead's Top 10 List of Exercises for Life, Agrees with 9/10 – Fitness Volt (2023)

Cavaliere took a closer look at the 10 exercises Cbum picked to perform for a lifetime: "This is my alterations to it."

Jeff Cavaliere Reacts to Chris Bumstead's Top 10 List of Exercises for Life, Agrees with 9/10 – Fitness Volt (1)

Written byDoug Murray

Last Updated onJuly 7, 2023

Jeff Cavaliere is a fitness guru who has maintained an impressive physique since he arrived in the industry. In a video on the ATHLEAN-X YouTube channel, Cavaliere examined the 10 exercisesChris Bumstead chose to do forever if he had no other options.

Chris Bumstead took over the Classic Physique Olympia throne in 2019 after taking the honor from the then-two-time champ Breon Ansley. Since becoming a titleholder, Bumstead’s dominance in the IFBB Pro League has been impossible to ignore. He holds the all-time record for the most Classic Physique Olympia victories at four.

At his last Mr. Olympia show, Cbum won the judges over with exceptional conditioning, detail, and posing execution. He managed to take home another title despite suffering from a torn bicep in the weeks leading up to the competition. During the contest, Bumstead defeated contenders Urs Kalecinski and runner-up Ramon Queiroz in the finals.

In the off-season, Bumstead recently joined Chris Williamson for an interview regarding exercise selection. During the video, Bumstead was asked to list only 10 exercises he would perform for a lifetime. And considering his physique and overall dominance, it’s safe to say fans paid close attention to his answers.

The latest to attack the subject is Jeff Cavaliere. Cavaliere is a key figure in the ATHLEAN-X fitness company, which is known for encouraging wellness and staying fit. Cavaliere has trained celebrities, in 2006, he was the assistant strength and conditioning coach for the New York Metts and has a massive social media following. Jeff has gone to great lengths to keep fans informed and never shies away from technical discussions about exercise.

Below, you can find Jeff Cavaliere’s review of Bumstead’s exercise selections. For the majority of the list, Jeff agreed with Bumstead’s picks. In addition, Cavaliere offered a few other exercise variations that he believes deserve an honorable mention.


“Again, If I’m critiquing it for me if this is my alterations to it… because squats are kind of rough on my knees for the reasons he said, I would have to go with a Bulgarian split squat, which I love love love. Also, I’m not limited to 10 in this rule, am I? I would also probably say a reverse barbell lunge. It takes away all the knee pains. Again for me, Bulgarian split squat and reverse barbell lunge is going to eliminate all those knee issues.”


“Deadlift is an amazing hamstring builder. As someone who does more stiff-legged variations of it myself, I love it,” said Cavaliere. “The one thing that people might say if they’re doing them for a lifetime, but I’m a believer you can do the lift for a lifetime.”


“We’re talking full reps, not those short, all lockout, no kipping, this is real pull-ups. Neutral grip is definitely the safest option for people who have any type of potential elbow issues. Chin-ups I believe would be very hard for a lifetime. People almost always for a lifetime will get some sort of medial elbow discomfort. I don’t see the problem with the pull-up itself, as long as you’re doing it properly.”

Incline dumbbell presses

“I love that exercise. We’ve put that on our list. A 30-degree angle on the incline bench, again I think it’s important. Plus it also gives you, I think if you do your incline at a low enough angle, it still gives you all the benefits of the flat bench press also. I don’t think you need to do both of them necessarily.”

“For me always, the dumbbells are better for me. I’ve got some bum shoulders and it makes me feel a hell of a lot better when I’m doing it.”

Seated dumbbell shoulder presses

“I love the dumbbell shoulder press, I don’t like doing them seated. Well, first of all, if you can get on your feet any opportunity you can get on your feet, you should take advantage of that. Now, I’m sort of putting my own personal bias on it, to train more athletically, I think being on your feet is something that’s going to carry over more.”

Close grip flat bench

“First time I’m going to disagree. The incline bench is going to cover a lot of ground. If it’s triceps that you’re going for, I love the lying triceps extension, not a skull crusher but further back behind because it gives you a more unique stimulus on the triceps. You get the stretch on the long head.”

Dumbbell curls

“I mean there’s not a person out there that’s not going to put curls [on their list]. I honestly think the enjoyment of my workouts would go down if I didn’t have a curl. One thing curls do, is they sort of give you instant feedback to know that what you’re doing is working.”

“If nothing else, it teaches you what a real good mind-muscle connection should feel like that you can then apply to other exercises in the gym.”

Barbell bent over rows

“Yeah. Honestly, the deadlift is there and it’s going to heavily hit your back but that’s a lot more isometrically. I think here if you’re going to go with a dynamic movement, the barbell bent over rows is great.”

Hanging leg raise

“That’s fine. Well, I actually think people need to train their core directly. I don’t believe training with exercises like the barbell bent over row or the deadlift, yeah there’s a lot of core demands to do the exercise right but I think you need to directly train your core. A lot of them can be very remedial if you don’t have the strength to do a hanging version then it should probably be some variation of a reverse curl.”

Lateral raises/triceps extensions

“I definitely think that the pressing is definitely great when you’re doing the dumbbell shoulder pressing but there’s no doubt if you want to get bigger medial delts that’s specifically going to contribute to the look or growth of the shoulders, you have to pick some variation of lateral raises.”

“I might pick the cheat lateral version,” added Cavaliere

In a recent collaborative effort, Jeff joined Dr. Andrew Huberman for a discussion on workout splits. While there is value in traditional bro splits, Cavaliere argued that there are more effective solutions available. Most importantly, Jeff highlighted that a split left incomplete isn’t an effective program for garnering results.

Regardless of their differences, fans and athletes can learn a ton from Jeff Cavaliere and Chris Bumstead’s exercise selection. Both men have reached incredible heights in fitness and agree on most of the movements listed above.

RELATED: Scott Herman Puts Jeff Cavaliere On Blast For Not Apologizing For Fake Weight Controversy

You can watch the full video from the ATHLEAN-X YouTube channel below:

Published: 7 July, 2023 | 11:15 AM EDT

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