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As an Olympic-level swimmer from Germany, Maik Wiedenbach lifted weights four to five times a week to improve performance. After moving to the U.S., he began bodybuilding.
“When I started training people, I wanted to lead by example so I started competing,” Wiedenbach says. The former Musclemania champ adds sets and weight each session for four to five weeks, deloads for two weeks, and repeats that cycle. “I train heavy going into a show,” Wiedenbach says. “That’s the only way I keep muscle.” To stay lean year-round, he eats zero carbs on non-training days, relying on almond butter to beat cravings.
His leg workout below yields a mature, balanced physique.
Myth 1: Don’t Eat Carbs at Night.
Fact: Total calories matter more than timing. Too many carbs causes weight gain.
Myth 2: High Reps Equal More Size.
Fact: The 6- to 12-rep range, combined with excess calories, is great for size.
Myth 3: You Must Do Cardio to Lose Fat.
Fact: Cardio helps by burning extra calories, but you need to refine your diet for fat loss.
Maik Wiedenbach is an instructor of exercise science at New York University and author of 101 Fitness Myths.
Weight: 230 lbs.
Residence: New York City
* In the leg workout below, do A1-A3 as a triset, resting 45 seconds between sets. Rest 3 minutes after A3.