While Twana Barnett is currently banging heads in the larger-than-life world of pro wrestling, the beauty they call “The Beast” will be familiar to bodybuilding aficionados as well. Having earned her IFBB pro card in the Women’s Physique division around a decade ago, Barnett racked up a number of impressive showings on stage during her flexing career. Now, however, she is dominating in a different arena, WOWing pro wrestling fans with her captivating blend of size, speed, and power.

M&F sat down with “The Beast” to find out how she came to forge a career in pro wrestling, and why she loves any outlet that allows her to express her individuality. And, for those wondering how this Californian builds her killer quads, we’ve got a monstrous workout for you to try.

Between WWE’s RAW, Smackdown, and NXT, coupled with AEW’s Dynamite, Rampage, and Collision television shows, there’s certainly no shortage of adrenaline thumping action on our screens each week, and that’s not to mention exciting up-and-coming brands like IMPACT and the NWA—also seeing audience figures increase during what is undoubtedly a hot time in the pro wrestling industry.

But, despite all that bone-bending, body-slamming mayhem, one criticism that is levied at almost all the major wrestling promotions is the distinct lack of primetime focus that is given to the women of the ring. Fortunately, “Women of Wrestling” (also known as WOW) is putting that right. Founded in the year 2000 by David McLane (the man behind the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling aka G.L.O.W.) WOW is also co-owned by the Los Angeles Lakers owner and president, Jeanie Buss.

Outside of WWE and AEW, WOW is now the most watched wrestling TV show in the United States, and is also broadcast internationally in countries such as Canada, Australia, and Indonesia. There’s no doubt that many pro wrestling fans need their fix of female action, and WOW delivers in abundance, becoming a go-to destination for ladies to learn the ropes.

Female wrestler Twana Barnett jumping from the top rope in a WOW match
Twana Barnett/WOW

Twana ‘The Beast’ Barnett Learned Life-Lessons From Charles Glass

“Somebody in the gym told me that I had shoulders like Lenda Murray,” says Barnett, recalling how she became inspired to forge a career in bodybuilding. Within four weeks of that comment, she was commanding the stage. “Getting my pro card was a big achievement for me,” adds Barnett. “I always did my contest preps coach-less, which is kind of unheard of in the industry, and so to do that as a hobby for myself, and to get to that point … I feel like once I got my pro card, ‘yeah!’ I proved (the doubters wrong) to myself.”

The powerhouse explains that she was born “aggressively” competitive, and as the youngest sibling with seven older brothers, it’s easy to see why. While Twana Barnett may not have hired a dedicated coach for her contest preparations, she was still able to share gyms with legends in bodybuilding, and soaked up the wisdom like a sponge. “I had the pleasure of having a few training sessions with Charles Glass,” shares The Beast, who notes that ‘The Godfather of Bodybuilding’ changed her perceptions of working out. “That was humbling,” she recalls. “When you go around as a bodybuilder, there’s a part where you ego-lift, you bang around the big weight with the big boys, and he is a legend, he’s a true master of what he does, and he was able to break me down with five-pound weights.”

These days, Twana Barnett uses many of the same principles in her own workouts such as time under tension, drop sets, and plenty of variation to sharpen the mind-muscle connection. “Even with wrestling, it’s all about intention,” she explains. “What’s my intention? When I was a bodybuilder, my intention was symmetry, and now my intention is power, explosive strength, and endurance.”

Growing up as a crash dummy for her older brothers who were all big wrestling fanatics, it seems like a call of destiny that The Beast would later become a champion between the ropes. “When I saw the opportunity to become a part of WOW, I jumped at it,” she says. “I went, kicked-in David McLane’s door, and I told him I was going to be his next champion! And I made good on that promise.” Indeed, Barnett held the WOW title for 1,275 days and is looking to add a second reign to her resume. And, while championships are impressive, the chance to empower the next generation of women is priceless. “They (WOW) take the time to highlight each individual woman on the show,” says the Beast. “To show her strengths, and to show other people that this is possible. Like, you can be a teacher and a wrestler. You can be a lawyer and a wrestler. These women are strong in so many different ways and this show gets to highlight that, which I feel so fortunate to be a part of.”

Now, as a gifted grappler, Twana Barnett still channels Charles Glass’s influence to out-condition her opponents. “A wrestling match, you’re looking at ten, fifteen, twenty minutes so you have to have more endurance, more energy in the end of the match than you do in the beginning,” she explains, leaving M&F Hers readers with a brutal leg day workout that is typical of The Beast’s intense gym sessions. And, as if this finisher doesn’t already look tough enough, Barnett adds that she cycles through it, completing it as rounds until she is completely slayed.

It’s no wonder they call her “The Beast!” For more information on how to watch WOW visit: wowe.com.

Twana Barnett wearing the WOW championship belt
Twana Barnett/WOW

The Beast’s Quad Focused Leg Day

As noted, Twana Barnett favors lot’s of variations with rep schemes, and is an advanced athlete, so you may want to start with a lower set or rep range, building your way up to beast level.

Warm up

  • Indoor Bicycle: 5 minutes

Leg Day: Quad Workout

Barbell Weighted Walking Lunges: 4 Sets x 10 Reps

Elevated Front Foot Smith Machine Lunges: (4 Sets x 20/15/10/Failure. Ascending Pyramid)

Leg Extension: 4 Sets x 15 Reps Superset with Dumbbell Goblet Squat (4 Sets x10 Reps. Pause for 3 seconds at bottom of the squat)

Seated Leg Curl Machine

Set 1: Choose a weight you’d fail at 12-15 reps
Set 2: Strip weight by 10 pounds/ 10 reps
Set 3: Strip weight by 10 pounds/ 10 reps rest and repeat this 5 times

Dumbbell Bulgarian Split Squat

Set 1: Choose a weight you’d fail at 12-15 reps
Set 2: Strip weight by 10 pounds/ 10 reps
Set 3: Strip weight by 10 pounds/ 10 reps rest and repeat this 5 times

The Beast Quad Builder Finisher

Jump Squat: x 10
Burpee Box Jumpover : x 10
Switch Lunge Jumps:  x10
Sled Push: 50 yds
Sled Pull: 50 yds
Squat: Hold 20 seconds