Hunter Labrada often gives fans a look into his fitness journey while competing as a bodybuilder. In a recent YouTube video, Labrada shared how to grow legs with some of his favorite techniques and offered tips for fasted cardio.
Being the son of IFBB Hall of Famer Lee Labrada, Hunter Labrada is one of the few legacy competitors in bodybuilding. He first gained attention for his humongous muscle mass, size, and symmetry after taking home the top prize at the 2020 IFBB Tampa Pro. He secured an invite to the 2020 Mr. Olympia competition based on the victory and finished the season in eighth at his Olympia debut.
Hunter made his way to the 2021 Chicago Pro next and handily dispatched the competition to score gold. In his next showing, he managed to crack the top five and placed fourth after a fierce battle with rising sensation Nick Walker at the 2021 Mr. Olympia. Following the show, the rivalry between Labrada and Walker fueled many bodybuilding discussions.
Labrada entered the last Mr. Olympia with confidence. However, he fell short of his ambitions at 2022 Mr. Olympia in Las Vegas three months ago. He missed out on being in the first callout and found himself in seventh place.
The 30-year-old was understandably upset with his performance and identified problems with peaking correctly. Since he was not in the top six at the Olympia, he will need to earn an invitation by winning a pro show because the point system has been removed. He declared his plans to compete in two events this season before the Olympia including the Tampa Pro and Texas Pro.
Last month, Hunter Labrada started making improvements. He focused on cutting down the size of his waistline in the off-season and has been practicing vacuum poses. He also revealed plans to work on his conditioning.
Labrada remains open and honest with fans and motivates his followers by sharing tips. He encouraged the use of A/B split variations to push through training plateaus as of late. He followed this up with a full day of eating and supplements during the off-season.
Hunter Labrada shares tips to grow weak legs
In a recent YouTube video, Hunter Labrada shared some of his best tips to grow legs. He stressed the importance of recovery along with performing the exercises properly.
“To grow your legs you need to find exercises that fit your body well and allow you to continually add load and progress them overtime,” said Labrada. “When performing these exercises, you need to do them in a controlled manner in which you’re getting a full range of motion. In addition to that, you need to really pay attention to your recovery and your training frequency. Bodybuilding is full of people who want to be the hardest workers in the room and think that more is better.
“A lot of the times, it’s not always the case. If you feel like your training intensity is where it should be at, I would look at things like reducing your volume, increasing your frequency of the sessions but reducing the volume to give your body a chance to recover. You grow outside of the gym, not in it.”
“If you train legs and you’re sore for five days, that’s a good indicator you’re not recovering well from it. Just like it’s not what we eat, it’s what we can assimilate from, it’s not what we can do in the gym for one session it’s what we can do in the gym over a period of time and recover from that leads to progress.”
As a longtime user of different techniques, Labrada focused on rest-pause sets.
“I incorporate intensity techniques very regularly. Throughout my entire career, I’ve used intensity techniques pretty regularly. My all-time favorite intensity technique is forced reps. I’ll get all the way to failure and I’ll have my training partner help me perform one forced rep or help me get that last rep that I can’t complete by myself. That has been a staple in my training since I was in my teenage years. The second technique I enjoy employing right now is rest-pause sets. Typically, the way I’ll employ those is within my training on the one or two best movements of the day that I think give the most juice for the squeeze. On the back-off set, I’ll make it a rest-pause set. I’ll perform as many reps as I can and then I’ll perform as many reps as I can again with the same weight.”
“Another thing that I’ve done in the past, especially for smaller muscle groups like arms and shoulders has been drop sets. I feel those muscles respond well not only to big loads but also very dense periods of work where you’re driving a lot of lactic acid and blood to the area.”
Labrada weighs in on using fasted cardio for fat loss
Finally, Hunter Labrada gave his take on the importance of using fasted cardio for fat loss.
“There’s a big difference between what people think of when you say fasted cardio and what I believe it actually is. People automatically assume it’s doing cardio right after waking up and before eating breakfast. It’s true that in the morning after sleeping you’re in the ultimate fasted state but with bodybuilders, ones that are using it for fat loss for contest prep, I would argue that it’s more of a routine than the increased benefit of fat loss. It gets us out of the bed at the same time every morning, it has our digestion ripping from the time we get up, and honestly it sets you up for a good day. With that being said, you can do cardio at times throughout the day in fasted states.
“That’s what I think is important to consider whenever you’re thinking about doing your cardio. You want to be in a state where your blood sugar is relatively low, where you don’t have a lot of food in the system so your body starts pulling from your fat stores as soon as possible. My favorite time to do cardio in a contest prep is post training. Not only are you completely depleted in a fasted state, your heart rate is elevated, you’re huffing and puffing from the second you get on until you finish.”
“Fasted state cardio is definitely beneficial for fat loss but it doesn’t have to be the first thing in the morning.”
Last week, Hunter Labrada discussed the difference in weighing food raw versus cooked. Although results may vary for each, Labrada encouraged one method and sticking to it for the best results. He chimed in on the two golden rules of meal timing and frequency a few days later.
RELATED: Hunter Labrada to Lee Labrada: ‘I’m Trying to Bring the Level of Conditioning You Brought’
You can watch the full video below:
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