Men’s Open bodybuilder Brett Wilkin was the first athlete to qualify for the 2023 Mr. Olympia contest when he won the 2022 Big Man Weekend Pro. Charles Griffen seeks to be the final athlete to qualify for the Mr. Olympia contest by winning the 2023 Legion Pro, scheduled for Oct. 7-8, 2023, in Reno, NV.
On Sept. 22, 2023, Wilkin published a video on his YouTube channel featuring the grueling back workout he performed with Griffen during Griffen’s contest prep. Check it out below:
[Related: 2023 Rising Phoenix and Arizona Pro Results]
Wilkin & Griffen’s Back Workout
Below is a breakdown of the duo’s workout:
- Cable Lat Pulldowns
- Standing Cable Pullovers
- Single-Arm Machine Rows
- High Rows
- Chest-Supported Machine Rows
- Cable Seated Rows
Cable Lat Pulldowns
The duo started with lat pulldowns, focusing on a high volume of paused reps. Wilkin squeezes at the top of every rep while training to mechanical failure, suggesting that hypertrophy is still the target even during a caloric deficit to achieve stage-worthy conditioning.
Cable Pullovers & Single-Arm Rows
Wilkin and Griffen moved to cable pullovers, using a Prime attachment instead of a MAG grip. The former allows for a natural hand position that helps align the movement with their structure through the range of motion. As a result, they more accurately train their target muscles in their fully shortened position. They allow for a full stretch at the top, followed by a forceful pull toward the hips.
They continued their lat training with isometric single-arm rows with weight plates. The Rodgers single-arm row machine allows them to maintain tension to bias their upper backs. Wilkin contracts the lat first, then drives the elbow back to optimize his lat engagement. Halfway through the single-arm rows, Wilkin deems it his “sweat set,” highlighting the volume and intensity of the session.
Griffen gets asked mid-workout how long he sticks with the same exercises, to which he replied that he programs by feel, but always lifts with high intensity. The most consistent training day in Griffen’s programming is his quad-biased leg day.
High Rows, Chest-Supported Rows, & Cable Seated Rows
Wilkin and Griffen trained incline bench-supported rows with a bit of a cheat to increase tension at the top of each rep. They decreased the weight while increasing stretch during their eccentrics. They hold the stretch for five seconds twice before hitting five more reps (known as rest-pause sets with a stretch at the bottom).
Lastly, the Men’s Open duo performed cable seated rows, supinating their wrists and squeezing their lower backs to near-failure with each set. Wilkin implored viewers to not to use momentum when performing this movement as the aim is to contract the muscle through the full range of motion.
Griffen’s carb intake has increased to fuel his final training sessions as he prepares for the 2023 Legion Pro. We’ll see if the training with Wilken pays off and they become rivals on the Mr. Olympia stage in November in Orlando, FL.
Featured image: @charlesgriffen_ifbbpro on Instagram