Since he burst onto the scene by winning the light-heavy class at the 2005 USA, New Yorker Fakhri Mubarak has had two of the best calves in bodybuilding. He’s only competed twice in the pros, but his lower legs get noticed on any stage. He last flexed them on his way to a sixth place finish in the 202 division of the 2009 New York Pro. Mubarak shares with us the finer points of his calf expanding philosophy.


• I train calves twice per week on days I don’t train quadriceps or hamstrings. I like to break up my legs to focus on the different areas.

• Some people like high reps, some low reps, I like that middle-to-high range. I think 15-20 per set is the sweet spot for calves.

• Get some variety. Don’t just do the same two exercises in the same order every workout. I like to do three exercises, and I switch them up and change the order.

• Stretching is crucial. Do it before, during and after training calves.


Standing calf raises 4 15-20
Seated calf raises 4 15-20
Calf presses 4 15-20