Three-time reigning Classic Physique Olympia champion Chris Bumstead filmed a leg-shaking workout session for a video he posted on his Youtube channel on Aug. 3, 2022. Bumstead is currently bulking in his off-season, making improvements to his overall package leading up to his prep for the 2022 Olympia, scheduled for Dec 16-18, 2022, in Las Vegas, NV. Bumstead will attempt to win his fourth consecutive Classic Physique Olympia.
Once Bumstead starts lowering his caloric intake in his Olympia prep, whatever muscular gains he makes in his off-season will be what is ultimately shown to the judges on stage. Bumstead crushed another heavy leg day with a quad focus at Revive Gym in Stuart, FL. Check it out below, followed by the full workout details:
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Lying Leg Curls & Thigh Adduction
Before Bumstead began his workout, he warmed up on a stair climber in reverse to prep his knees and hamstrings for the impending heavy working sets.
My knees have been bothering me lately. I also screwed up my lower back, so I’ve been going to the chiropractor three times a week. Today is…an injury prevention leg day.
Bumstead opened the workout hamstring-focused: lying hamstring curls. This further warmed up his knees without applying much additional stress. Secondly, he performed sets on the thigh adduction machine — a preamble to the upcoming compound movements on the docket. By training his adductors before his heavier movements, Bumstead believes it helps him get deeper into his squats and leg presses pain-free.
Bumstead’s first compound movement of the day is the quad-focused leg press. Bumstead focuses on a slow, controlled movement through both the concentric and eccentric portions, not concerned about explosiveness. He sustained control of the weight throughout, not allowing any momentum.
A 2017 study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that while eccentric portions of the repetition had a more significant hypertrophic reaction than solely focusing on the concentric, it did not reach statistical significance. It stated that “including eccentric and concentric actions in a hypertrophy-oriented resistance-training program…have shown to be effective in increasing muscle hypertrophy. (1)
My legs will be toast by the end.
Bumstead performs rest-pause reps on the exercise to keep pressure off his knees with two different foot placements. The first was a wide stance with his feet pointing out for a glute focus. The second position placed his feet closer to the lower section of the platform with his toes pointed straight for more quad focus. He sought 18-20 reps per set, working up to nine 45-pound weight plates on each side.
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Glute Ham Raises
Bumstead moved over to the reverse hyperextension machine. While reverse hypers are usually used to train the lower back, they can be utilized as a bodyweight leg curl alternative — using the hamstrings to pull oneself up, similar to glute ham raise. There is also the added benefit of a deep lower-back stretch.
It’s one of my favorite things for hamstring. You get a really good stretch and forces you to contract really hard to bring yourself up.
Bumstead maximized that stretch at the bottom of every rep, allowing his body weight to elongate his hamstrings fully. He then curled himself to the starting position via contraction in the hamstrings and glutes.
Superset: Leg Extensions & Sissy Squats
The leg extension was next for Bumstead. As a believer in form over weight, Bumstead continued his strategy of slow eccentrics with a strong but controlled concentric.
It’s a great day to have small legs.
Bumstead used the leg extensions to pre-exhaust his quads so he could burn them out with the bodyweight sissy squats, achieving a killer pump. He finished off his leg workout with standing calf raises. He alternates between standing and seated calf movements week to week.
Chris Bumstead’s Leg Workout
Below is each exercise in the order performed by Bumstead at Revive Gym during his leg workout:
- Lying Leg Curls
- Thigh Adduction Machine
- Leg Press
- Glute Ham Raises
- Superset: Leg Extensions & Sissy Squats
- Standing Calf Raises
Bumstead trained heavy but intelligently — he did a thorough warm-up, performed rest-pause sets, and programmed supersets to up the intensity and volume. Bumstead remained steadfast regarding injury prevention despite taking every working set to near failure.
The intensity of Bumstead’s leg workout and higher rep counts will likely help him build up his legs for the upcoming Olympia prep. Conscientiousness about recovery could lead to an overall improved package for Bumstead on the 2022 Olympia stage.
Schoenfeld, B. J., Ogborn, D. I., Vigotsky, A. D., Franchi, M. V., & Krieger, J. W. (2017). Hypertrophic Effects of Concentric vs. Eccentric Muscle Actions: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Journal of strength and conditioning research, 31(9), 2599–2608. https://doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0000000000001983
Featured image: @cbum on Instagram