Hunter Labrada is busy improving his physique to reclaim his place among the most elite contenders. Labrada is an American professional bodybuilder that competes in the IFBB Pro League Men’s Open division. He is one of the top contenders in the division and has participated in the prestigious Mr. Olympia competition thrice. Hunter Labrada is the son of legendary bodybuilder Lee Labrada and has inherited the genetics and passion for bodybuilding. He shot to prominence with a win at his professional bodybuilding debut — the 2020 Tampa Pro. The win earned him a direct qualification for the 2020 Olympia, where the 30-year-old walked away with an eighth-place finish.
After gaining the necessary experience at his Olympia debut, the Labrada Scion returned, scored a win at the 2021 Chicago Pro, and qualified for the 2021 Olympia. Labrada beat top contenders like Nick Walker and William Bonac en route to a fourth-place finish at the show. Determined to bring home the Sandow Trophy, he prepped for the 2022 Olympia with renewed vigor but had to be content with a seventh-place finish among one of the toughest line-ups in recent history.
Labrada was ‘f***ing pissed’ at his performance and has laid out the plan of action for 2023. He is not obsessing over the 2023 Olympia as of now and intends to win the 2023 Tampa Pro and Texas Pro before that. The three-time Olympia participant has started his 2023 off-season diet and training. Recently, he went through a full lower body workout and posted the session’s video on his YouTube channel. So without further delay, let’s take a closer look at the detailed account of this training session.
Hunter Labrada’s pre-workout meal and drink
Labrada’s new diet plan requires him to eat the pre-workout meal two hours before his training session.
“I like that because I’m eating a lot more whole food now, so I actually do chicken and rice before I train, so it gives a second to digest.“
The 30-year-old bodybuilder’s pre-workout drink includes:
- 1 scoop of intra-workout formula that contains highly branched cyclic dextrin (25 grams of carbohydrates)
- 1 scoop of pump
- 10 grams of essential amino acids
- 5 grams of creatine monohydrate
Labrada consumed the pre-workout drink and headed straight to the gym, where he started with a few dynamic warm-up drills before starting the workout.
Hunter Labrada goes through a leg workout
Labrada has the habit of logging the minutest details of his workouts and challenging himself to make incremental growth in the gym. He followed his routine of making notes in his log book and spoke about this habit and how it has shaped his progression over the years.
“At the end of the day, you’ve gotta have fun with the training, and this is what makes it fun for me. I get to walk in every day and try to beat myself from the last session. To me, that’s very fun and fulfilling.”
“Outside of that, it’s very hard to really look at trends week to week and month to month without having it written down. It’s one thing to think you’re growing, and it’s another thing to have on paper that you have regularly added weight to exercise, which only happens by being stronger. If you’re stronger, the muscles are growing.
Maintaining a log book has given Labrada quantifiable data to make necessary adjustments to his training. After making the necessary notes in the log book, Labrada jumped right into the leg training session. At this point, the training volume is a little low as the 2021 Chicago Pro winner is still easing his way into training after the 2022 Mr. Olympia.
“I’m literally one working set per exercise on all the compounds, and it’s got me sore for four to five days after still.”
Seated Leg Curl
Labrada started the training session with seated leg curls to isolate the hamstrings. Apart from working this muscle, leg curls are an effective way to warm up the knee joints without putting a lot of stress on them. The seated variation of leg curls enables a greater range of motion and therefore helps bring about hypertrophy more effectively than the lying leg curls.
The Labrada scion performed two warm-up sets of seated leg curls to get the blood flowing into the muscles. He followed it up with a few working sets with incrementally heavier weights and jumped into the next exercise after doing a back-off set at the end.
“Leg volume is really low. That top set and the back-off set are the only direct isolation work for hamstrings today. They will obviously get worked during the compounds we do.”
After working the hamstrings, Labrada took to the first quad isolation movement of the day and performed leg extensions. Labrada warmed up the quadriceps with a couple of warm-up sets and then worked his way up to the top set with incrementally heavier weights. After firing up the quads with this isolation movement, the Texas native took to the first compound movement of the day.
Labrada stated that he has structured his lower body workouts in a similar manner to this training session, where he starts with a hamstring and quad isolation movement each and follows up with a compound movement. He next took to the leg press and did a few warm-up sets. After that, Labrada performed working sets of the exercise and jumped into the next compound exercise.
Unilateral Hip Press
Labrada next performed the unilateral hip press to work all the major muscle groups in the lower body. Although he did the exercise unilaterally, the Texas native started each set with a couple of reps using both his feet. While explaining the logic behind this, Labrada stated:
“Unrack it with both feet on it and do a single rep with both feet on it. It really sets your hips and gives your mind the feel of what path that single leg should be taking because a lot of times – I’ve been guilty of this in the past too – starting with the single leg… You’re never even so your leg could be internally rotated or externally rotated one and not the other. But you always kind of fidget around the leg path during the first couple of reps trying to get a feel for it.”
Doing the first rep with both feet helps Hunter determine the movement pattern. Labrada performed a few reps of hip press unilaterally and took to an isolation exercise next.
Machine Hip Adduction
After wrapping up the hamstrings and quadriceps work, Labrada shifted his focus to a different muscle group. Adductors are a group of muscles in the thigh region that help adduct (bring together) the legs. Labrada performed a few sets of machine hip adduction next and jumped into the day’s final exercise.
Standing Calf Raise
Labrada wrapped up the training session with standing calf raises to work the gastrocnemius muscle. After pushing through some solid sets of this movement, he called it a day in the gym.
Labrada Leg Workout
Overall, the workout included:
- Seated Leg Curl
- Leg Extension
- Leg Press
- Unilateral Hip Press
- Machine Hip Adduction
- Standing Calf Raise
An unsatisfactory performance at the 2022 Olympia compelled Labrada to reassess how he approached training. Labrada is motivated to regain his place among the absolute top contenders in the Men’s Open division. If he maintains the focus and intensity in training, he can certainly achieve that and then some.
You can watch the full workout video below, courtesy of Hunter Labrada’s YouTube channel: