HE’S bagged the Mr Olympia title more times than Arnold Schwarzenegger and now Ronnie Coleman reveals his ultimate muscle-building techniques.
Most people consider Ronnie Coleman to be one of the greatest bodybuilders in the world.
The 52-year-old man mountain was the reigning champion of the Mr Olympia title for eight years in a row, clinching his first win back in 1998.
He also holds the record for the most wins by an IFBB (International Federation of BodyBuilding and Fitness) professional.
The fitness fanatic may have retired back in 2007, after placing fourth in his last Mr Olympia competition, but Ronnie’s physique is still as impressively ripped as ever putting many men his age to shame.
In an exclusive interview with Daily Star Online, Ronnie revealed exactly what it takes to become a world champion bodybuilder, how he hones his mammoth muscles and his best bulking advice.
When it comes to packing on mass Ronnie said it all comes down to one thing – nutrition.
He explained: “I don’t think this is a big secret but protein is what builds muscle so it all starts with your food.
“Everyone is different in the amount of protein that their body can absorb so you have to do a little trial and error to figure that amount out.
“I recommend 1-1.5g of protein per lb of lean body mass per day.”
As for muscle-boosting exercises, Ronnie advises an “old school” approach to training.
He said: “The best exercises are the old school hard ones that no one likes to do. Squat, deadlift, bent over rows.
“The best range for building muscle is 12-15 reps. Although I do believe heavy sets work but they cant be the staple of your training.
“Most of it should be in that 12-15 rep range but I’ll never tell anyone to not go for some heavy 1-2 rep sets just for the hell of it. I loved doing that.”
During his “superman” days the American star made sure his diet was regimented with military precision – and he didn’t deviate from his eating plan at all.
BODYBUILDER: The 52-year-old has revealed his best muscle-building tips
Ronnie said: “I had a nutritionist, Chad Nichols, who managed all of my food intake.
“I did exactly what he wrote on the sheet and, I mean, exactly. I remember one time Chad asked me how much I cheated on my diet so he knew for next time because everyone cheats a little and I responded saying: ‘Why would I cheat on my diet?’
“He was shocked. Chad would cycle my carbs and that’s pretty much the only thing that changed.
“Protein stayed around 600g a day and fat was low. I didn’t count it but the only fat I got was from the foods I ate. I didn’t add any extra in.
“A high day would be like 1,500g of carbs one day per week or one day every two weeks then he would cycle me all the way back down to like 150g a day.
“Those were some hard days I’ll tell you but I did exactly what was planned and it seemed to work out pretty good.”
The food he chowed down on was kept as simple and clean as possible, with meals made up of chicken, lean beef and turkey but “never fish”.
To fuel his intense workouts Ronnie also loaded up on carbs like rice, grits, potatoes and sweet potatoes as well as plenty of protein powder.
“I would wake up in the middle of the night to have a big protein shake because that’s the only way I could get all of my meals in,” Ronnie said.
When he was training for the elite bodybuilding competitions, the champ had “barely any down time” and his life revolved around working, training and eating.
He said: “I would wake up and do one hour of cardio, eat, go train, eat again, go to my shift and work 10 hours, eat then come home and do about one more hour of cardio, eat again.
“I loved what I was doing so I never felt like I was working when I was training or doing cardio. I just had a passion to be the best at it and weight training was always my hobby so I would have been doing it anyway.”
But in the beginning, Ronnie didn’t always have his sights set on becoming one of the best bodybuilders in history.
After moving to Arlington in Texas he landed himself a job in the police force.
Ronnie recalled: “I always loved training, it was just a hobby for me, so I trained at the police station.
“It was a little ‘ole gym with not much equipment and one of the guys said to me: ‘Hey you have to come try this gym called Metroflex, they have all kinds of equipment.’
“So I checked it out and really liked it and started training there. First day I was there the owner, Brian Dobson, came up to me and asked if I competed in bodybuilding and I said no.
“He then said I should and that I could be Mr Olympia one day and I barely knew what Mr Olympia was because in my small hometown we didn’t have bodybuilding.
“He said he would help me and I politely declined because I was focused on my new job at the police department plus I didn’t really want to diet – I liked pizza.”
He continued: “So Brian kept on me day after day until about the third day in a row he offered me a free lifetime gym membership as long as I competed.
“Well, I was poor at the time so he had me at free.
“After that, it was all history as they say.”
The source: dailystar.co.uk