Kai Greene was the number one contender for the Mr. Olympia title from 2012 through 2014, nearly dethroning Phil “The Gift” Heath over his seven-year reign atop the sport. Greene is remembered for his artistic posing routines that highlighted the mix of conditioning and size he brought year after year.
Recent posts by Greene on his social media and his biopic via Generation Iron titled “Kai” display that despite remaining off the competitive stage, he has not let go of the bodybuilding lifestyle. In a recent video posted to Will Tennyson’s YouTube channel on Oct. 16, 2022, the fitness influencer joined the 3-time Olympia runner-up for a chest workout. Check it out below:
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Phil Heath & Will Tennyson’s Arm Workout
If you want to follow along with Heath’s arm workout, here are the moves, followed by a breakdown of each one:
- Superset: Dips & Pull-Ups
- Incline Dumbbell Flyes
- Incline Barbell Press
- Bench Press
- Cable Crossovers
Greene explained that he utilizes a superset of dips with behind-the-neck pulldowns as his “chest activation secret.”
Superset: Dips & Pullups
The dynamic duo kicked off their workout with a superset of bodyweight dips followed by wide grip pull-ups, each for 20 reps. The plan was to superset behind-the-neck pulldowns, but no pull-downs were available, so they improvised.
We’ve got a lot of movement of the scapula.
Greene and Tennyson completed another set of dips for 15 reps, flexing their chests at peak contraction and allowing a full stretch at the bottom of the movement before their second set of wide grip pull-ups.
They completed three supersets for a descending rep scheme of 20, 15, and 12 reps for both exercises. While Kai performs this superset as a warm-up, Tennyson said, “it feels like cardio.”
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Incline Dumbbell Flyes
Incline dumbbell flyes were up next. They were programmed to train the pecs in the lengthened position. Green appreciates these for the stretch at the bottom and the prolonged time under tension which contributes to an incredible pump.
Both athletes completed four sets for a pyramid rep scheme of 20, 15, 12, and 10. Tennyson reached failure, which was a first for him on chest flyers. Greene advised training lagging muscles first to help them match the stronger muscle groups.
Incline Barbell Bench Press
For their third movement, Greene and Tennyson completed three sets on the incline barbell bench press with another round of pyramid reps, descending from 20 to 15 to 12. Greene likes higher rep ranges, believing it better stimulates muscle growth. He finds his body responds well to higher volume.
Greene discussed how many bodybuilders lift heavier than they need to improve, which can lead to avoidable injuries. Muscle stimulation is what matters, and load is a tool to continue to maintain that stimulation as strength improves.
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Flat Bench Barbell Press & Cable Crossovers
A sweat-drenched Greene kicked off the flat bench press with 135 pounds for 20 slow reps. Tennyson matched 20 reps with 95 pounds — a testament to how lighter weight with proper form can be an effective means for hypertrophy. Tennyson worked his way up to 135 pounds for 12 repetitions, while Greene banged out 12 reps with 225 pounds.
Greene and Tennyson finished their chest day with cable crossovers. Each bodybuilder completed three working sets of 20, 15, and 12 reps, increasing the weight of each set.
Advice For First-Time Competitors
Greene mentioned that many athletes get stuck between the beginning and the midway of their bodybuilding goals. They start determined for a few weeks, stop or slow down, and then have to restart. Greene advised that the solution is consistency.
Follow through with your goal.
Greene’s last two appearances on the Olympia stage — in 2013 and 2014 — resulted in second-place finishes, respectively. In Dubai, Greene will represent Redcon1 and New Rock Sports at the Dubai Muscle Show on Oct. 28-30, 2022.
Featured Image: @willtenny and @kaigreene on Instagram