Training

High-Volume Hell for Mass

Gustavo Badell’s high-octane routines will pile mass onto your legs and back. Just don’t expect them to be easy.

High-Volume Hell for Mass
Chris Lund

After earning his pro card in 1997, Venezuela-born bodybuilder Gustavo Badell competed in more than 30 IFBB shows over the course of his 15-year career. Nicknamed the “Freakin’ ’Rican” after moving to Puerto Rico in his early 20s, Badell earned acclaim for taking third at the ’04 and ’05 Mr. Olympia competitions. With a contest weight of 245 pounds (at a height of 5'7", mind you), Badell was a certified mass monster. This was in part due to his high-volume approach to training. His workouts could contain upwards of 36 sets and take more than two hours to complete. But they paid off. Two body parts Badell managed to blow up were his legs and back. Below, we outline his insane regimens so you can see whether you have the grit to grind through them. Remember to keep the weight lighter, as 32 sets is no laughing matter. Go too heavy and you’ll risk burning out.

BADELL'S BACK ROUTINE

  • Pullup (warmup) | SETS: 4 | REPS: 8–12
  • Behind-the-Neck Pulldown | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Weighted Pullup | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Barbell Row | SETS: 4 | REPS: 10–12
  • T-Bar Row | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Hammer Strength Machine Row | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Low-Pulley Row | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Deadlift | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Back Extension | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15

BADELL'S LEG WORKOUT

  • Leg Extension | SETS: 4–5 | REPS: 12–15
  • Front Squat | SETS: 4 | REPS: 10–12
  • Back Squat | SETS: 4 | REPS: 10–12
  • Hack Squat | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Leg Press | SETS: 3–4 | REPS: 12–15
  • Lunge | SETS: 4 | REPS: 12–15
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