After falling short of his goals the last time he competed on the Mr. Olympia stage, Hunter Labrada has taken his conditioning game to the next level. In a recent podcast with Milos Sarcev and Chris Tuttle, Labrada discussed the pressure of his Olympia prep and gave a progress update.
Hunter Labrada is following in the footsteps of his legendary father Lee Labrada who graced the Olympia stage for seven consecutive years. Using his father’s vast knowledge of fitness and bodybuilding, Hunter Labrada has developed into a top contender for the Men’s Open with a sincere dedication to training.
Labrada hit the ground running since becoming an IFBB Pro bodybuilder. Having competed a number of times on the Olympia stage, Hunter Labrada consistently improved and earned himself a spot in the top four at the 2021 Mr. Olympia, the highest placing of his career. Unfortunately, the 31-year-old took a backstep in 2022 when he slid into seventh place.
Hunter Labrada took it on the chin and admitted he came up short, though he vowed he would return better than ever for 2023. Labrada made changes to his diet and workout routine during the off-season to kickstart his comeback year. In pursuit of a better look, Labrada was focused on improving his conditioning and reducing the width of his waist.
Labrada’s work paid off when he took first place at the 2023 Tampa Pro earning his ticket to the Olympia stage where he could make up for the ground he lost last year. Hunter Labrada did one more show, the Texas Pro, and came in second to Andrew Jacked before he took some time off to rest and recuperate.
Hunter Labrada Reveals The Pressure He Feels Going Into The 2023 Mr. Olympia
After a 30-week prep, Hunter Labrada is days away from redemption. However, he revealed in a recent podcast with Milos Sarcev and Chris Tuttle that his physique has completely changed for the better which continues to motivate him to improve.
“This was the first time [at 2023 Tampa Pro] that I’ve even come close to being dug out stage-lean. It completely changed the way my physique looked. It was really motivating to see to have that work pay off and to reach that next level of conditioning, but it was kind of like the 1+1=3 kind of thing, with how my physique looked,” explained Hunter Labrada.
Hunter briefly discusses one of his Men’s Open rivals Derek Lunsford who has been boasting a monstrously ripped back in recent physique updates. As for his own back development, Hunter has been shifting gears in his training routine but wants to go with the flow.
“Derek’s back is on a whole different level from anyone’s right now. His back is nuts,” said Labrada.
“Right now, I’ve never prepped this long before. It’s kind of learning on the fly for us right now seeing what my body does and doesn’t want to do.”
“Been focusing on lower lat contraction with that plate-loaded Nautilis.”
“It’s one of those things that got so sensationalized you know the drinking of the food was a byproduct of the extended off-season whenever I was qualified. Because you’re pushing upwards of 6,000 calories a day for seven months straight it just got to the point where I didn’t even want to look at food so I was just going to drink it, whatever.That was a byproduct of that. Being in prep, being hungry even, this last off-season, after the Olympia when I knew I needed to change things we slowly worked my food up, worked my appetite up, and corrected a lot of the gut issues that I was having. I’m hungry. I like my food.”
“My all-time best has been at other shows than the Olympia. I really want to finish out strong make myself proud and put my best look on the Olympia stage at the end of this 30-week prep. Then ride off into the sunset and enjoy Thanksgiving and Christmas with the family and make plans for next year.
“Every athlete competing in that show feels more pressure that weekend than any other weekend. It’s Olympia, it’s the Super Bowl of what we do. Regardless of what level you’re at it’s a big deal to be there. It’s never something to be taken for granted competing at that show.
For me personally, I feel like it’s a make-or-break year for me honestly. Yeah, so after sliding from fourth to seventh this is the year I come back after taking that slide. It’s one of those make-or-break years in my opinion.”
“Anywhere but Vegas man. Orlando is fun just because it’s so set up to you know receive people and handle large conventions but it’s not like constantly slammed with everything like Vegas.
So I appreciate how accessible everything is and not having the sensory overload of any time you have to go anywhere and the Vegas and the Strip is big for me because I get very anxious the week of.”