Hunter Labrada will make his 2023 competition debut at the 2023 Tempa Pro, scheduled for Aug. 3-5, 2023. He will also compete at the 2023 Texas Pro on Aug. 18-19, 2023. Should he win either, he will secure qualification for the 2023 Mr. Olympia, scheduled for Nov. 2-5 in Orlando, FL.
Outside of the people qualified for the Olympia…I am one of the best in the world left on the table.
On July 10, 2023, Labrada pulled back the curtain on the high-intensity push-day he uses to prep for the 2023 Tampa Pro. At the time of recording, Labrada was five weeks and five days out of stepping on stage. Check out the video below, courtesy of Labrada’s YouTube channel:
Labrada fell from fourth place at his debut Olympia appearance in 2021 to seventh in his sophomore year. Labrada took a long off-season to shore up the weaknesses. Below is a breakdown of his push-day workout:
Hunter Labrada’s Push Day Workout
Labrada performed seven exercises:
Incline Machine Chest Press
Labrada opened with the incline machine chest press. He used a neutral grip and kept his elbows close to his sides to bias his upper and inner pecs. Labrada used slow eccentrics to increase his time under tension and maximize muscle fiber recruitment.
“I am training to win those two shows, Tampa [Pro] and Texas [Pro],” said Labrada. “I feel like I’m perfectly capable of winning them.” For the final leg of his contest prep, Labrada is using high-intensity training combined with a calorie cut while improving his conditioning.
Machine Chest Press & Pec Deck Flye
Labrada hit the machine chest press next. The angle of movement allowed Labrada to bias his middle and inner pecs. His hands were at his sides at the starting position and moved inward during concentrics.
Labrada moved through his full range of motion on the pec deck flye and used double drop sets for greater muscle fiber stimulation. According to a 2012 Journal of Human Kinetics study, employing drop sets in one’s workout may prove valuable to “increased strength or hypertrophy.” (1)
Machine Shoulder Press & Seated Machine Lateral Raise
While performing the seated machine lateral raise, Labrada rested his chest against the machine’s back pad to avoid using momentum. After he couldn’t complete reps with a full range of motion on the final set, he continued performing partials.
Crunches & Triceps Cable Pushdowns
Labrada worked on his midline via crunches on a flat bench. He pulled a vacuum at the starting position and exhaled sharply during concentric. He believes the double-arm triceps cable pushdowns are best for targeting all three triceps heads.
Labrada placed the wide cable stack with pulleys at the highest setting and used cuff attachments. He slipped his left hand through the right cuff and his right hand through the left cuff. He extended his arms to his sides while maintaining a straight back, and his scapula retracted.
Post-Workout Posing Session
After the workout, Labrada adorned his posing trunks and went through the mandatory bodybuilding poses. “Stomach looks crazy now. It’s night and day from last year,” said retired pro bodybuilder and podcast host Fouad Abiad, who was present for the posing session.
“Your back’s become a strong point,” complimented Abiad when Labrada hit the rear lat spread pose. Abiad and Lee Labrada, Hunter’s father, then gave the in-prep bodybuilder posing tips on the rear lat spread and back double biceps poses to uncover more definition and create the illusion of more depth and back thickness.
Abiad confirmed to Lee Labrada that Hunter was on schedule to peak properly in just over five weeks. Hunter revealed he will weigh around 250 pounds at the 2023 Tampa Pro. Since Labrada still has 12 pounds to lose before stepping on stage, he believes he will be diced to the bone.
Labrada plans to punch his ticket for the 2023 Olympia via a win at either the Tampa Pro or Texas Pro. While defending champ Akim Williams is Labrada’s biggest challenger at the Tampa Pro, Labrada will lock horns with the defending Texas Pro champion Andrew Jacked, who is also vying for a spot on the 2023 Olympia roster.
Bentes CM, Simão R, Bunker T, Rhea MR, Miranda H, Gomes TM, Novaes Jda S. Acute effects of dropsets among different resistance training methods in upper body performance. J Hum Kinet. 2012 Oct;34:105-11. doi: 10.2478/v10078-012-0069-6. Epub 2012 Oct 23. PMID: 23487480; PMCID: PMC3590834.
Featured image: @hunterlabrada on Instagram
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