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It was a no-brainer to predict that the first NPC National champ was destined for great things when, in his rookie year of 1983, he won his pro debut at the Night of Champions and placed third at the Olympia. But no one could have foreseen just how “TotaLee Awesome” 23-year-old Lee Haney would become over the next nine years. At the 1984 Mr. O, the 238-pound, 5’11” sophomore started a win streak that remains unbroken to this day.
Soon enough, the comparisons with Schwarzenegger started. After all, the Oak’s record was supposed to stand for generations. But, taller and wider, with a chest, shoulders, and back leagues ahead of his contemporaries, the genetically gifted Haney removed any pretense of suspense when the big O rolled around. With the exception of 1989, when a considerably downsized and fat Haney was pushed hard by 5’5″ 180-pound Lee Labrada, there was never any real doubt who would be the last man standing.
Outside of his 1987 Grand Prix Germany win, Haney competed exclusively on Olympia stages post-1984, bringing his career win total to 11. One can only wonder how high that number would be had he competed more often.
Haney will not be remembered as the hardest-training or the most conditioned Mr. Olympia, but he will be remembered as possibly the most gifted next to Sergio Oliva. He continued to improve throughout his reign; some years he was fuller (1985), some years he was sharper (1986), and some years, much to the dismay of his competition, it was just a combination of the two. For his final and record-breaking eighth win, Haney tipped the scales at 252 pounds.
We didn’t know it then, but with his classic X-frame, beautiful shape, and overwhelming size, Haney was not only a hybrid in the mold of Oliva, but also a throwback to the classical bodybuilding ideal that the sport would come to miss.
As with all of my training, my motto for triceps is “Stimulate, don’t annihilate!” Arm muscles, in particular, are relatively small and, as such, can be easily overtrained. The idea is to hit the muscles hard and fast, and then get out of the gym and enjoy your life.
During the offseason, I used two triceps training routines, phase one and phase two, which I would alternate as a way to keep my muscles from becoming comfortable with a single system of training.
This two-phase routine is somewhat advanced and should not be performed by anyone with less than a solid year of training under his belt. When followed twice a week for three months, it’s sure to add quality mass to that all-important 67% of your upper arm.
NOTE: Alternate between the two phases for each workout.
*Do three sets for each arm.