Bodybuilding legend Jay Cutler recently crushed a leg workout and shared bodybuilding knowledge. Cutler won the prestigious Mr. Olympia competition a whopping four times in his career and retired from the sport with a lasting legacy. His rivalry with 8-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman is considered as the greatest in the history of the Men’s Open division. After going up against Coleman for a number of years, Cutler finally dethroned him and wore the Mr. Olympia crown for the first time in 2006. He then secured victories three more times – in 2007, 2009, and 2010. The 49-year-old adapted well to the changing landscape and transitioned to the age of internet and social media. As a result, Cutler is one of the most popular and recognizable bodybuilders of his generation.
He is one of the most prominent voices in the industry and analyzes the current affairs in competitive bodybuilding in his various podcast appearances. Although significantly downsized after retirement, Jay Cutler continues to train hard and maintain excellent shape all year round.
Recently, Cutler shared a leg workout on his YouTube channel. He also shared his training philosophy and commented on the upcoming 2023 Arnold Classic. So without further delay, let’s take a closer look at the detailed account of this training session and what Cutler had to say about Arnold’s.
Jay Cutler thinks Shaun Clarida could do some damage at the 2023 Arnold Classic
The 2023 Arnold Classic is just around the corner. The second most prestigious bodybuilding Competition of the year is scheduled to take place from March 2-4 in Columbus, Ohio. Notable open division bodybuilders like 2021 Arnold Classic winner Nick Walker, 212 Olympia champions Shaun Clarida and Kamal Elgargni, up-and-comers like Andrew Jacked and former 2-time Mr. Olympia Mamdouh ‘Big Ramy’ Elsabiay will all compete at the show to take home Arnold’s trophy.
At the beginning of the video, Jay Cutler gave his opinion on the line-up and said:
“We’ll have to see what happens. What do you think? Is (Nick Walker) going to repeat or is he going to have some competition? What about Shaun Clarida? He could do some damage dude,” Jay Cutler said.
When asked if he expects any notable additions to the line-up, Cutler replied:
“I don’t think they’ll let anyone else in. It’s still a contest where they have to do the promotion and they’ve every guy they’ve announced.”
2021 California Pro winner Patrick Moore is slated to make his comeback at the 2023 Arnold Classic. In spite of being one of the highly touted prospects, Moore has not been able to register a statement win on the bigger platforms. He last competed at the 2021 Legion Sports Fest Pro and finished tenth in the Men’s Open division. Following the lackluster showing, he decided to take an extended break from the Competition until 2023. During this time, Moore also struggled with an Achilles tendon injury that threatened to end his career. However, he is back now and will attempt to show the gains he has made during his time off at the 2023 Arnold Classic. While speaking about Moore’s comeback at the show, Cutler said:
“Patrick Moore entered. It’s great to see him. I think he was sidelined with an injury so it’s great to see him back now.”
Jay Cutler crushes a leg workout
1. & 2. Kneeling Leg Curls and Lying Leg Curls
Jay Cutler started the leg training session with these two variations of the leg curls to target the hamstrings. Apart from activating the hamstrings, leg curls are an effective way to warm up the knee joints. Knees are the most crucial joint in lower body movements and it is essential to warm them up at the beginning of the leg workout to avoid injuries.
Although Cutler started the workout with these exercises, he admitted that he never liked to do them during the earlier days of training.
“I hated doing hamstring curls. I could never feel them and then it took me like a certain point in my career when I started actually putting hamstrings first in my routine or training on a double split where I do hamstrings one workout. This is when I started feeling it. So if I do quads and then I try to do hamstrings, I don’t get as much of a pump. I can’t isolate as much,” Jay Cutler stated.
As a result, Cutler started putting hamstrings exercises first in all of his lower body workouts and he explains, ‘it has worked’ for him.
3. Dumbbell Stiff Legged Deadlifts
After sufficiently warming up the lower body with leg curls, the 4X Mr. Olympia then took to this variation of deadlifts. The Stiff Leg deadlifts are technically an isolation movement.
However, they are an excellent posterior chain exercise that works the hamstrings, glutes, lower back, erector spinae as well as calves. After doing a few sets of this exercise with moderate weights, Cutler went back to doing the leg curls.
4. Seated Leg Curls
All three variations of leg curls – seated, lying, and kneeling – are potent hamstring-activating movements. However, they work the muscle from different angles and emphasize different parts of the hamstrings due to that. Therefore it is essential to incorporate all the movements in the training routine.
Jay Cutler pushed through a few solid sets of seated leg curls next and took to the first compound exercise of the day.
5. Leg Press
Bodybuilding legend performed this quad-focused exercise and did the first set with four plates on each side. Following a few sets performed with slow and controlled motions, Cutler took to another variation of the leg press.
6. Vertical Leg Press
The vertical leg press is called so because the weight moves along a vertical axis that is perpendicular to the ground. Therefore, you are lifting relatively heavy as the load includes the weight of the carriage and the plates combined. The only drawback of this exercise is that it puts a lot of stress on the lower back. Therefore it is essential to have excellent hip mobility to do this exercise safely.
Cutler pushed through some sets of the vertical leg press and jumped into the next movement.
7. Walking Barbell Lunges
The 49-year-old performed walking barbell lunges next and moved on to his favorite exercise for leg development.
8. Barbell Squats
Barbell Squats are arguably the most effective lower body exercise and in many ways, the most important one you need for strength and muscle gains.
With the improvements in technology and advent of different machines, many people have started to reduce the emphasis on traditional barbell squats in their leg training routine. Jay Cutler shared his opinion on the importance of barbell squats and said:
“Are squats absolutely necessary for building legs? That’s the question of the day. I say yes. How did I build my legs? Squats!”
After cranking out a few solid sets of Barbell Squats, Cutler wrapped up the leg training session.
Overall, the workout included:
- Kneeling Leg Curls
- Lying Leg Curls
- Dumbbell Stiff Legged Deadlifts
- Seated Leg Curls
- Leg Press
- Vertical Leg Press
- Walking Barbell Lunges
- Barbell Squats
How important is the rep range for making gains? Jay Cutler answers
There are multiple contradicting opinions on the perfect rep range for maximum gains. Regular gym-goers and bodybuilders feel the dire need to find the goldilocks zone to get the most out of their training. However, these are still burning questions: How important is the rep range, and what is the ideal rep range?
Jay Cutler stated that he never really counts the reps while going through the workouts. However, his rep range falls in the 8 to 12 range even if he doesn’t count it consciously.
“It’s not really about the reps s much. I mean, I still think it should be above eight if you’re trying to build round muscle tissue and train like a bodybuilder,” Jay Cutler opined.
Cutler quoted bodybuilding legend Lee Haney and stated that training with extremely heavy weights is unnecessary for professional bodybuilders. Although he is criticized for it, Jay Cutler recommends high-volume training, especially for professional bodybuilders.
“It’s not always about what the weight is. It’s about feeling the control. I hate the word ‘time under tension’… Like it’s just about engaging the muscle and feeling it,” Jay Cutler said.
“Don’t worry about the exact count” – Jay Cutler
The 4-time Mr. Olympia retired from the sport without any major injuries and attributes this to not falling in the trap of heavy weights and repetitions. He advised to listen to the body and stick to what feels right on a particular day rather than adhering to a specific rep range.
“Going in the gym for every workout is about feeling it and don’t worry about the repetitions, about exact count,” Cutler said.
“If you feel like, ‘Man… I don’t feel like pushing to twelve today, stick with the tens!” He added.
According to Cutler, it is important to be able to increase the volume as one moves forward in the fitness journey and not just kill themselves in the very beginning.
Jay Cutler is one of the few bodybuilders that retired from the sport without serious health issues. Therefore his training methods and philosophy is something we all can trust when it comes to longevity.
You can watch the full video here, courtesy of Jay Cutler’s personal YouTube channel: