A leg workout fit for one of the biggest Mr. Olympia contenders.
Written by Robert Zeglinski
Almost a year after finishing fourth at the 2021 Mr. Olympia — a career-best finish — bodybuilder Hunter Labrada is hungry for more. As one of the top contenders for the 2022 Olympia title, Labrada would undoubtedly love to leave his mark on the sport by standing on top of the podium in Las Vegas, NV, on Dec. 16-18, 2022. His rigorous commitment to his nutrition and training might help him accomplish that ambitious goal while living up to his legendary father’s legacy, Lee Labrada, who won the 1985 Mr. Universe and placed in the top-four at seven consecutive Mr. Olympia contests.
On Nov. 9, 2022, Labrada posted a video to his YouTube channel where he powers through a demanding leg workout. The session is a part of Labrada’s “Road to the O” video series, sitting roughly six weeks before the onset of the latest edition of bodybuilding’s flagship competition.
Here’s a complete rundown of Labrada’s leg routine as he preps for his third crack at the Mr. Olympia.
Seated Leg Curl
To start his workout, Labrada elected to work in some seated leg curls. The movement can warm up the knees while importantly helping to develop hamstring mass and strength. The athlete completed a few casual sets before proceeding forward.
In the next phase of his routine, Labrada implemented some heavy leg extensions. The athlete clarified that when the weight gets heavier, the load’s leverage can lift people out of the seat. That, in turn, reduces their range of motion but also diverts attention from the quads. To account for this potential issue, Labrada adjusts the seat and straps in with a seat belt to ensure he can better isolate his quads and perform high-rep sets.
The middle portion of Labrada’s workout saw the bodybuilder show off some pendulum squats. The pendulum squat emphasizes the quads and glutes, where an athlete performs essentially the same movement as a traditional back squat on a machine — except they don’t have to worry about maintaining balance with a loaded barbell in their hands. Labrada worked through some challenging, high-intensity sets with a heavy resistance band added for increased tension.
After working with some machines, Labrada performed a bodyweight movement with walking lunges across the gym floor. It was apparent Labrada focused on proper technique with proper control over a few sets.
Hip Adduction Machine
As a high-level bodybuilder, aside from the health benefits of stabilizing the trunk, Labrada cannot afford to neglect his adductor muscles when training his lower body. The athlete had a concise explanation for how to best perform hip adductions for maximum results.
“Whenever you’re doing this, you want to maintain a degree of neutrality in terms of external and internal hip rotation. You don’t want to be pushing from your feet with your knees coming off the pad.” Labrada maintained.
Standing Calf Raise
Labrada concluded the leg session with focused work on standing calf raise machine, before donning trunks for posing practice under the watchful eyes of his coaches and training partners.
Alongside stars like two-time reigning champion Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay, Labrada will be one of the bigger names present at the 2022 Mr. Olympia. If he continues his “Road to the O” with rewarding leg workouts like this, he might even be the main headline by the contest’s end.
Featured image: hunterlabrada on Instagram