Training

Retro Athlete: Alq Gurley

Quad-sculpting advice from the 1990 Nationals champ.

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Retro Athlete: Alq Gurley

Chris Cormier says he was an inspiration. In 1990, Alq Gurley kicked off bodybuilding’s greatest decade with light-heavyweight and overall wins at the Nationals and a World Championships title. His combination of fullness and crispness was highlighted by high-caliber guns and deeply separated quads. In 1992, his rookie pro year, Gurley finished third in his debut and second in two post-Olympia shows. That promising start was this 5'9" Philadelphian’s zenith in the big league. Two years later, a fall blew out both of his knees. He eventually returned to stages, but the size standards had skyrocketed and he was overwhelmed. He last competed in 1999. Today, at 55 but looking much younger, Gurley is a personal trainer in South Florida, and he’s fondly remembered by Cormier and others for the classic physique he flexed a quarter century ago.

FLEX FACT: GURLEY COMPETED IN TWO OLYMPIAS, 1992 AND 1994, AND BEAT FUTURE EIGHT-TIME MR. O Ronnie Coleman BOTH TIMES.

 GURLEY ON QUAD TRAINING 

  • “The smartest thing you can do is prepare thoroughly before using big weights.”
  • “To stretch, I do lots of track warmups, hurdler stretches, and sissy squats.”
  • “Focus is crucial when training legs. Flex and isolate the area you want to hit.”
  • “In order to keep constant tension on the muscles, I don’t lock out on exercises like hack squats and leg presses.”

 GURLEY’S QUAD ROUTINE 

Leg Extension | SETS: 4 | REPS: 15–20

Squat | SETS: 4 | REPS:10–12

Leg Press | SETS: 4 | REPS:10–12

Hack Squat | SETS: 4 | REPS:10–12

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