Whether you’re training for a local bodybuilding show or are just looking to improve your physique for personal reasons, this fact remains: The devil is in the details. Phil Heath and I both believe that the little things, such as subtle tweaks to foot placement, modified ranges of motion, and slight changes in his training split, are just as important as his main working sets on big compound moves. Make sure you’re sticking to the tried-and-true basics (squats, presses, heavy rows), but try some of these fine-tuning tips that I’ve used over the years with Phil to add a new dimension to your training…and your physique.



Hanging Leg Raise

Even though you’re moving your legs up and down, you still have to concentrate on crunching the pelvis every rep to fully contract the abs.


Front Raise

Phil alternates standing front raises and front raises lying facedown on an incline bench, as well as using barbells and dumbbells. This is done to keep the body off guard.


Seated Cable Row

Alternate handle attachments on rows to make sure you’re hitting the muscles from all angles.


Hack Squat

Lower down to just below parallel to hit that glute-hamstring insertion—going too far down can stress the lower back. Also, alternate between pointing the toes outward and straight ahead.


Leg Extension

Extensions are a great way to pre-exhaust the quads to get them ready for the leg workout, so I like to start with them. But don’t go to full extension—stop about three-quarters of the way up to reduce pressure on the patellae. – FLEX