Dorian Yates Workout and Diet

Bodybuilder (Retired)
Born: 1962

Dorain Yates is from England. He didn’t start working out until his early 20s but he went on to win the Mr Olympia 6 years in a row, (1992-’97), earning the nickname ‘The Shadow’ for showing up unexpectedly at contests and stealing the win. During that period, he won every single contest he entered. Yates turned down several lucrative endorsement deals and interviews in order to maintain privacy and focus on training. His career ended due to injuries, and since leaving the world of competitive bodybuilding, he has tried several businesses, including a gym franchise, selling athletic apparel and bodybuilding books, and he has also partnered with various supplement companies. His latest, DY Nutrition, sells pre-workout formulas and training DVDs. Yates has millions of followers on social media. He is married to Brazilian fitness model Gal Ferreira. Yates is 5 feet 10 1/2 inches tall and weighs 275 when he competed, and around 300 lbs. in the off-season.

Known For:

Dorian Yates’s Diet

Summary

Bodybuilding is a lifestyle that always includes nutrition. Yates has been in the biz a long time and says that while some of his practices have changed over the years, he still follows the practice of eating protein every few hours, along with simple and complex carbs. He weighs and measures his food and counts macros. He eats pretty standard items such as egg whites, chicken and steak for his protein, oatmeal, rice and potatoes for his carbs and green vegetables for micronutrients. He says meal planning is key, and failure to plan will give poor results. He says it’s important not to starve your body of carbs, and he always follows a workout with a fast-acting simple carb drink.

Estimated Macros

  • Low-Medium Fat 25% 25%
  • Medium Carb 30% 30%
  • High Protein 60% 60%

Diet Details

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Eat Your Protein

Yates says that if you want to build muscle, you should eat some protein every couple of hours. Take your bodyweight and divide it by 6 to get the amount of protein you should be eating at each meal. For example, 180 ÷ 6 = 30 grams per meal.

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Power Up

He’ll often have a meal-replacement powder about 90 minutes prior to training, but he says it’s also okay to eat a balanced meal like protein, simple and complex carbs, such as chicken, rice and broccoli.

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Hearty Meals

Yates’ first meal is around 7-8 in the morning and often consists of 1 cup of oatmeal, 10 egg whites and a scoop of protein powder. A typical lunch is 2 chicken breasts, potatoes or rice and a green veggie. Dinner is often red meat along with rice or potatoes and another green veg. Before bed, he’ll have a 1/2 cup of oatmeal and 6 egg whites with more protein powder.

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Plan Ahead

Yates says understanding nutrition is key to maximizing gains. He says it is unwise to skip meals because it leads to bingeing.

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Experimentation

Yates says understanding nutrition is key to maximizing gains. He says it is unwise to skip meals because it leads to bingeing.

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Restore With Carbs

Following a workout, Yates will immediately drink a beverage that is 75% simple carbs and 25% protein to raise insulin and restore glycogen levels and aid with recovery.

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Watch the Sugar

Yates says a lot of bodybuilders think it’s good to carb-load before a workout, but he thinks that’s a mistake because blood sugar levels will drop during workout, leading to fatigue and poor endurance.

What to Eat

R

Egg Whites

R

Oatmeal

R

Chicken Breast

R

Rice

R

Potatoes

R

Red Meat

R

Whey Protein

R

Fast-carb Drink

R

Water

What to Avoid

Q

Fast Food

Q

Junk Food

Q

Fried Food

Q

Added Sugar

Q

Processed Foods

Q

Chemicals

Q

Artificial Additives

Q

Hydrogenated Oils

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Yates on Protein

‘I always aimed for 1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight.’

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Yates on What to Eat Besides Protein

‘The remainder of your calories should come from complex carbs and healthy fats.’

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Yates on Carbs

‘Don’t go too low on carbs or your body will be forced to recruit protein for energy during workouts.’

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Yates on How to Eat

‘Your goal should be to eat 6 or 7 small meals.’

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Yates on Diet Failures

‘Lack of careful planning is the main impediment to making progress.’

Dorian Yates’s Fitness Routine

Weekly Routine

Early HIIT Adopter

Yates was influenced by Mike Mentzer’s high-intensity training method and began to follow it early in his career. It involves doing a single set at maximum intensity to failure (with warm-up sets to prep muscles).

Unorthodox Training

Yates’ training methods were not popular at the time, but people couldn’t argue with the results.

Monster Trailblazer

Yates says back in the early 90s, it was unheard of for a bodybuilder to compete if he weighed over 250 lbs. He knocked that barrier down and ushered in a new ‘Monster’ era for the sport.

Ease Into It

Yates says recovery is a key component of growth and to protect against overtraining. He would do max effort for 5-6 weeks, then back off and go a little lighter for 2 weeks to allow his body to recover.

Exercise Style

Z

A Dorian Yates Workout

Day 1: Shoulders, Triceps, Abs
2 warm-up sets of 10-12 then 1 set at max intensity for 6-10 reps:
Smith machine shoulder press
Dumbbell lateral raise
One arm cable lateral raise
Dumbbell shrug
Cable press down
Lying EZ-Bar triceps extension
Do 1 working set of 20 reps of the following:
Roam chair sit ups
Crunches
Reverse crunches
Day 2: Back
2 warm-up sets of 10-12 then 1 set at max intensity for 6-10 reps:
Dumbbell pullover
Hammer pulldown
Reverse grip hammer pulldown
One arm dumbbell row
Wide grip seated cable row
Barbell deadlift
Do 1 working set of 8-10 reps:
Hyperextension
Day 3: Rest
Day 4: Chest, Biceps, Abs
2 warm-up sets of 10-12 then 1 set at max intensity for 6-10 reps:
Incline barbell benchpress
Machine chest press
Decline benchpress
Incline dumbbell flys (45º)
Flat bench dumbbell flys
Cable crossover
Incline dumbbell biceps curl
Standing EZ-Bar biceps curl
Machine preacher curl
Day 5: Rest
Day 6: Legs
2 warm-up sets of 12-14 then 1 set at max intensity for 10-12 reps:
Leg extension
Leg press
Hack squat
Seated hamstring curl
5 min break
Stiff-legged deadlift
Calf press
Seated calf raise
Day 7: Rest

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Yates on Getting Huge

‘The most effective exercises for stimulating muscle growth are multi-joint movements like the squat.’

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Yates on How the Body Works

‘The musculature of the human body was never meant to work in isolation.’

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Yates on Compound Moves

‘All the compound movements put a great deal of stress on the belly of the muscle in the mid-range of motion.’

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Yates on Isolation Exercises

‘Isolation exercises are more effective at providing stress at either the full stretch or the peak contraction of the movement.’

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Yates on Mixing up Your Routines

You do need both types of exercises [compound & isolated] for best growth results.’

Dorian Yates’s Supplements

Whey Protein

Whey Protein

Yates supplements with protein several times a day. Whey protein helps build lean, strong muscles and prevent muscle wasting.

Get it here  

Pre Workout

Pre Workout

Another part of Yates’ recommendation is a pre workout to improve performance, endurance and focus.

Get it here  

Energy Boosting Fat Burner

Fat Burner

Yates offers a fat burner in his line of supplements. Fat burners suppress appetite and torch fat while preserving lean muscle mass.

Get it here  

Mass Gainer

Mass Gainer

For those who struggle to put on weight, a mass gainer can be a game changer. Yates recommends a quality blend of protein and carbs with minimal fat for optimum results.

Get it here  

BCAAs

BCAAs

Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are a fave among athletes because they support muscle gains and speed recovery.

Get it here  

Glutamine

Glutamine

Also in Yates’ line is glutamine, which is essential for protein synthesis. It boosts muscle gains and performance, as well as immunity and digestion.

Get it here  

creatine

Creatine

Creatine is another go-to for Yates which also improves muscle gains, energy output and recovery.

Get it here  

Dorian Yates’s Lifestyle

Sleep Is Essential

Yates says that in his competitive days, he always aimed for 8 solid at night plus an hour-long afternoon nap. He admits that not everyone has this luxury, but to do the best you can.

Chart Your Progress

Yates recommends keeping a record of your workouts and meals so you can see what is working, and what isn’t.

It Runs In the Family

Yates’ wife is Brazilian fitness model Gal Ferreira whom he met at a fitness expo in Ohio in 2008 and married in 2009.

Cautious Competitor

Yates says he always avoided any physical activities that might result in an injury, such as skiing, which his wife enjoys.

New Psychedelic View

Yates decided to change his training to include yoga after experimenting with psychedelic drugs. Some of his other unconventional views include believing that vaccines contain cancer viruses and sterilants. He also says that the fluoride added to tap water can have negative effects on health.

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Yates on Patience

‘They say that patience is a virtue and nowhere is that more true than in bodybuilding.’

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Yates on How to Build a Bod Like a God

‘Many great workouts and many great meals, together with a lot of quality sleep, add up gradually into amounts of muscle that can transform an average person into a veritable Hercules.’

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Yates on How He Discovered Yoga

‘It was after an experience I had with the psychedelics. I was like, Man, your body’s all [messed] up. You need to do something about it. So you need to do yoga.’

Recommended Products

Dorian Yates training journal

Dorian Yates training journal

Weightlifting belt

Weightlifting belt

Weightlifting straps

Weightlifting straps

Weightlifting shoes
Weightlifting shoes
EZ bar
EZ Bar
DY Nutritional Supplements
DY Nutritional Supplements
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