How can you use the advice that legendary bodybuilders share to improve your workout? Fitness experts load the Internet with overwhelming tips and advice to boost your bodybuilding journey. That’s why we have jotted down tips from legendary bodybuilders so that you know what’s best for you.
1. “Hard work and training. There’s no secret formula. I lift heavy, work hard and aim to be the best.”– RONNIE COLEMAN.
Opposite to mainstream misapprehension, decreasing your body fat to a minimum while increasing your muscle size to the extreme is conflicting. Well-known myths say that “as you lose weight, you lose a lot of strength” and “higher reps burn more calories,” however, such assumptions come from those who achieved nothing. Instead, reducing body fat helps in increasing the body’s muscle-to-fat ratio. Therefore, you’ll have more muscle than weight, which allows you to have more endurance and internal strength. In conclusion, training every day with heavier weights will burn more calories, in contrast to calories burnt with lighter weights.
Many bodybuilders are in a substandard state because of over-training before a match compared to simply training. They increase the workout that made them enormous, causing them to overreach with their vigorous heavy-duty training and high-energy food. To avoid this, legendary bodybuilders maintain the supplements that build muscle, keep a steady intake of proteins in their diet and discover the calorie level that provides them with enough energy to support their usually high-intensity exercises while permitting them to burn body fat and not muscle.
2. “If you’re not eating right, your body will not grow like it would if you take what you eat more seriously. Quality protein, fats, and carbohydrates will be vital if you want to build quality mass.”– Lee Haney.
Even though best known for his work in the gym, Haney gives the most significant credit for his physique to his diet. Legendary bodybuilders treat their diet like gospel.
During one interview, when asked about his diet plan, Haney replied his diet comprises well-rounded meals:
- Quality proteins- get them from chicken, eggs, fish, and sometimes lentils. He relied little upon protein powders.
- Carbohydrates- mainly relied upon sweet potatoes as they are high in beta carotene and fiber. Low glycemic index making it a perfect energy food, having anabolic properties (similar to those of roots).
- Greens- consumed spinach a lot as it is a multi-mineral complex enabling him to cleanse the body.
- Water- refreshes, keeping the body clean, encouraging blood flow.
- Dairy- 12-15 whole eggs per day during the off-season for building muscles. During the season, he would take 3-4 egg whites and two whole eggs. He deemed egg yolks helpful as it contains lecithin and choline, having fat burning-properties.
- Pineapples- twice a day, as they act as an anti-inflammatory for joints.
3. “Devise an effective training split for muscle gain,”- Phil Heath.
It’s essential to go to the gym with a plan, so devise a training split that allows time for your muscles to recover and grow. Legendary bodybuilders know muscles grow not in the gym but during recovery. Phil heath’s training splits goes like this:
- Back and Biceps
- Chest and Triceps
Phil Heath combines back and biceps because many back exercises engage the biceps, and the same occurs when you are training with the chest and triceps. Therefore, it works well to group these body parts into the same training days. He assigns separate days for both legs and shoulders, stating that:
“if you are doing enough volume with–hamstrings, calves, glutes, and quads, that is going to be more than enough for you.”
He describes shoulders as “a lost art in bodybuilding.” And stresses the importance of working: the front, side, and rear delts create full rounded shoulders.
4. “Bodybuilding allowed me to be judged for who I am and not by the color of my skin, where I came from, or anything else. It’s just amazing,” – Flex Wheeler.
Flex is an excellent example of consistency. He is a role model teaching us that the circumstances, maybe if one is passionate enough, he/she can overcome. Legendary bodybuilders know that consistency and compliance to a workout and diet matter most.
In an interview from 2009, Wheeler states that potentially, you can reach over eighty percent of your bodybuilding potential by grasping a command over the basic training principles. Time and time again, he emphasized the significance of slowly adding weight to be lifted and using compound moves for mass building.
In the 90s, Wheeler didn’t have the resources we have today, such as the modern equipment present in most gyms. Despite that, he built an exceptional physique. He used the basics to gain both mass and strength. For instance, take his back-training routine, which comprised chin-ups, cable rows, and back extensions.
He believes that classic moves such as squats, rows, and deadlifts are the most effective exercises for strength and hypertrophy. He recommends doing three sets for each of these moves. If you are interested in further shaping your physique, you can use exercises such as bicep curls, calf raises, and other isolation exercises besides the essential lifts.
5. “Bodybuilding is much like any other sport. To be successful, you must dedicate yourself 100% to your training, diet, and mental approach.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Your will to work for hours depends upon your mental strength. To enhance the cognitive approach and motivate people, Arnie’s efforts are innumerable. Legendary bodybuilders know that mental toughness is just as important as the workout and diet. In various interviews, his blog, and even his book, he has tried his best to encourage people. Following is a gist of his interview. Putting these thoughts into consideration can affect your workout routine.
“Why do you want to work out? What is your goal?” Later on, in his interview, he answered this rhetorical question by mentioning how one’s goal can be super crazy as long as it motivates them. Arnold had put up posters of Sonny Liston, Roy “Reg” Park, boxers like Ali, weightlifters, and powerlifters all over his bedroom wall as a child. Looking at those pictures every day motivated him, and those images reminded him of his goal. People used to ask him how he smiles after long hours of workouts while his peers struggle for another rep. To that, he used to reply:
“I look forward to another dozen reps, another 500 leg squats, and another curl until my arms fall off. Why? Because I know that every rep that I did and every set that I did, and the weight that I lifted, I gain one step closer to turn that vision into reality.”
The legendary bodybuilders mentioned above are just a handful from the collection of legends throughout history. Bodybuilding is not just a sport. It is a lifestyle, and treating it as one requires courage and persistence. Which none of these remarkable legendary bodybuilders compromised.