Light weight babayy!
If you’re into bodybuilding, you probably know who’s known for yelling out those phrases: the one and only Ronnie Coleman.
He’s one of the most successful bodybuilders of all time and is particularly known for the giant weights he used to put up during his training sessions. You can say all you want about his steroid use (which happens with every bodybuilder at that level), but you can’t become as successful as he was without also training super hard, dialing in your diet, and taking the right supplements for your goals (and most likely some top-tier genetics as well).
And in this article, we’re going to go over the specific supplement stack Ronnie Coleman used during his bodybuilding career to help with workout recovery, strength, and overall health.
About Ronnie Coleman
Ronnie Coleman is one of the most well-known bodybuilders of all time. Born in 1964, Coleman first gained some attention in the athletic world when he played middle linebacker in college football at Grambling State.
But he’s by far most well-known for his bodybuilding career, which interestingly took off for him while he was still working another job with the police force.
Ronnie Coleman made his greatest impact in bodybuilding in the 1990s to early 2000s, winning eight Mr. Olympia titles in a row from 1998 to 2005. This was just several of his 26 total IFBB professional wins during his career, including other notable ones like the 1995 Canada Pro Cup, 1998 Night of Champions, and the 2001 Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic.
Coleman also stands out from other bodybuilders due to his preference for high-intensity, heavy weight routines. Whereas a lot of bodybuilders focus on more moderate weights and rep ranges, Coleman focused more on low reps and near-maximal weights. In fact, some of his best lifts are:
- Deadlift: 800 for 2 reps
- Squat: 800 for 2 reps
- Bench Press: 500 for 5 reps
- Military Press: 315 for 12 reps
Of course, you can’t talk about Coleman without talking about his insane discipline with regard to not only training but also diet.
Ronnie Coleman was known for sticking to a strict diet year-round, regardless of whether it was close to competition or in the off-season. He would hardly ever have a cheat meal and believed in the importance for fueling the body right at all times during his impressive career.
Ronnie Coleman’s Supplement Summary
Ronnie Coleman has taken a number of different supplements throughout his career and life. These have changed a bit later in his life as compared to when he was in his training and bodybuilding heyday.
After diving into two main YouTube videos, in which Ronnie showcased his supplement regimen, here is what Coleman appeared to take during his bodybuilding days.
Note: there is a slight difference in what he says between the two videos, but this list hits the main ones:
In the morning (sometimes throughout the day)
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin C
- Omega Tablet
- Saw palmetto
- Joint Fuel
- BSN Nitrix
- BSN Snytha-6 Protein: 100g
If you’re interested in watching the entire videos on YouTube, check out these links:
Ronnie Coleman’s Supplements
As you can see, Ronnie Coleman took a number of different supplements during his bodybuilding days. Listed below, we’ll go over each supplement, reasons why he took it, and the possible benefits.
Unfortunately, we weren’t able to find the exact dosages or serving sizes he used (with the exception of his protein shake).
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin. It has numerous roles in the body, including aiding blood flow, decreasing inflammation and oxidative stress, and supporting eye and brain health.
Coleman says he uses vitamin E mainly because it “helps with blood flow, energy, and muscle recovery”.
CoQ10 was mainly taken by Coleman because he says it “helps the heart”. Indeed, research does show CoQ10 can improve heart health. And there are other possible benefits too, such as decreased oxidative stress and inflammation, since CoQ10 is one of the most powerful antioxidants out there.
Chromium is a trace mineral most often used to support metabolism. According to Coleman, he takes chromium to help with appetite and to control sugar and fat levels.
There is evidence that chromium (especially in picolinate form) can improve insulin sensitivity and other aspects of metabolism, while also decreasing sugar cravings. Which is likely why it’s often used in many fat burners such as Ghost Burn.
Ronnie Coleman also takes vitamin C regularly because it “helps fight off… infections and colds and stuff like that”.
It makes sense that he took this when training hard because the added stress from training can dampen immune function. So taking in more vitamin C can boost immunity and decrease the risk of getting sick.
He uses it for the same reasons as vitamin C. And this combo must’ve worked well for him because in one video he said he really didn’t remember the last time he got sick.
Coleman also takes a calcium/magnesium/zinc supplement. This trio is a blend of very important minerals and electrolytes. They’re needed to support muscle and bone health, heart health, brain function, and much more.
Ronnie stated that his primary reason for taking this was to “help regulate minerals in the body and keep you from cramping during workouts”.
One of the more unique products Coleman supplemented with was NutriDyn Humanofort, which contains standardized peptides from chicken embryos.
This contains specific peptides, growth factors, and other compounds that are said to support hormone balance, muscle recovery, fat loss, and stress management.
Coleman also said that he takes an omega tablet (which we’re assuming is omega-3 fatty acids) mainly to “help control fat levels”.
Of course, omega-3s do a lot more than this too. They’re anti-inflammatory and promote better brain and heart function, among other things.
Ronnie Coleman also takes a multivitamin/multimineral, which he still says is one of the most important supplements for any lifter or health enthusiast to take. (of course, there are so many to choose from, so it can be helpful to see which ones to start with a list of some of the best ones out there).
This supplement provides a wide variety of essential vitamins and minerals to help fill in the gaps in your diet. This is especially important when training hard, as Coleman did, since the body demands more nutrients when put through grueling workouts. For him, it particularly helped to simply keep the body feeling good and to prevent cramping.
On top of that, Coleman didn’t like to eat his vegetables, so, as he comically put it “the multivitamin/multimineral helps with my, uh, non vegetable intake.”
JointFuel is a combination of glucosamine and chondroitin, which are two ingredients found in many other popular joint supplements such as Animal Flex. This is because they are actually components of cartilage and therefore may help to maintain joint health.
Ronnie mainly took this to keep his joints healthy even amidst all the wear and tear they went through during his brutal, heavy weight-lifting sessions.
This can especially take a toll on your knees, elbows, and shoulders, so it’s important to try to keep those as healthy as you can in order to be able to keep on lifting.
Next on the list is saw palmetto, which is a popular herbal remedy used for men’s health. In particular, Coleman uses saw palmetto to support a healthy prostate, as research shows compounds in this herb can maintain a healthy prostate size and prevent issues such as benign prostatic hyperplasia.
Coleman had a pretty funny remark regarding prostate health, in which he said:
“I don’t get the exam. I just get my prostate levels checked. I had the exam one time in my life…That was a pretty bad experience. I don’t wanna do that no time soon.”
For a pre-workout, Ronnie Coleman reliably took BSN Nitrix, which is a combination of citrulline, creatine, niacin, and various plant extracts.
This was used mainly to boost nitric oxide levels and blood flow, while also supporting strength and energy levels.
Post-workout, Ronnie also stayed with the BSN brand and used their Syntha-6 protein powder, which is a combination of several protein sources, including:
- Whey Protein Concentrate
- Whey Protein Isolate
- Casein Protein
- Egg Albumin Protein
This provides a variety of amino acids which can support muscle recovery and muscle growth. In fact, in one YouTube video, we saw Ronnie Coleman post-workout downing 100 grams of protein from this Syntha-6 supplement, so it’s clear he placed a high emphasis on protein.
Here’s that video for anyone interested:
The last supplement in Coleman’s regimen is ZMA, which is a combination of zinc, magnesium aspartate, and vitamin B6. This combination is used by many other lifters and athletes too, such as Eddie Hall and James Harrison.
ZMA is mainly used to support sleep and recovery. So, Ronnie takes it at night, when the minerals are designed to do their job, helping him to relax and sleep deeply throughout the night, while also boosting muscle recovery.
Other Key Aspects from Coleman’s Regimen
It’s clear that Ronnie Coleman has quite the supplement stack. And many may wonder if he takes that all the time or cycles anything.
Well, according to Coleman, he takes all of these supplements year-round, regardless of if he’s in the in-season or off-season. He did say that sometimes during intense training leading up to a competition, he may add in folic acid, iron, or other additional vitamins and minerals. But no real major changes.
Also, one thing to consider is the high intake of vitamins and minerals in this regimen. This can be beneficial, but there are also risks of taking in too much. This is especially true for fat-soluble vitamins as well as the minerals, which generally build up more easily in the body. So, if you’re already at optimal levels, taking in more than you need could potentially cause some side effects.
Ronnie Coleman’s Own Supplement Line
Lastly, it’s interesting to note that, today, Ronnie Coleman has his own supplement line. These products weren’t around when he was in his bodybuilding career, but he’s now dedicated to providing high-quality supplements for lifters and bodybuilders of all kinds.
Some of the most popular supplements from the Ronnie Coleman brand are:
Conclusion: Ronnie Coleman Supplements
Overall, Ronnie Coleman took many different supplements in his bodybuilding days, which helped him to become one of the most successful pro bodybuilders of all time.
After looking at his regimen, it’s clear that he focused mainly on the basic, evidence-based ingredients and really didn’t care for anything fancy or “new-agey”. This simple mindset is also reflected in his basic but brutal weightlifting sessions and no-nonsense approach to dieting.
Clearly, it worked for him. And we can say that many people may also benefit from one or more of the supplements he took. Just remember that everyone is different!