Training

Build a Back of Legendary Proportions

The back routine that's helping Nathan DeAsha move up the IFBB ranks.

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Nowadays, De Asha hits back every fifth day in his split, breaking it down into a short morning and longer afternoon session. “I realize my back is one of my weaker body parts that I need to bring up, so I’ll dedicate the day to it,” he says. “At 9, I’ll do hyperextensions and deadlifts, and I’ll come back at 3 for the rest of it.”

For both sessions, whether at home in Liverpool or Oxygen Gym in Kuwait City, where he goes numerous months out of the year, his trek is short. “In Kuwait, I step out of my apartment and I’m right there at Oxygen Gym,” he says. “In Liverpool it’s just 10 minutes, so I’ll go there even if it’s just for a couple of exercises.”

Hypers start with body weight only for 15 reps. De Asha will then grab a 10-kilogram plate (about 22 pounds) for 15 reps, a 15 kilo for another 15, and a final set where he starts with 25 kilos for a dropset, doing 10 reps with 25 kilos, then another 10 with 20 kilos, and a final 10 holding 10 kilos.

Deadlifts are next—a powerful movement that takes aim at the posterior chain, from his back down through his legs. He’ll start light with a plate or two each side, working his way up to 260 kilos (about 573 pounds) by his fourth or fifth set, always aiming for 8-10 reps. 

“I break it up this way because I need a lot of work on my lower back,” De Asha says. “This part takes me 15–20 minutes. If instead I was doing that at the end of my back workout, I’d be gassed, and I couldn’t give these two exercises my full attention.

 

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