Phil Heath's Workout Routine, Supplements & Diet (Revealed)

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: June 20, 2024
FACT CHECKED by Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
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Phil Heath is renowned for his success as a professional bodybuilder. He managed to win Mr. Olympia's title 7 years in a row.

This left many individuals who want to emulate him inquiring about his diet and workout routine.

Luckily, Phil has openly shared his exercise routines and the supplements he takes on different platforms.

After thorough research over the past few months, below is all the vital information you need to know about Phil's lifestyle.

Phil Heath’s Body Transformation History

He was always an athletic student, and in high school, he was the shooting guard and team captain of the varsity basketball team.

 

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A post shared by Phil Heath (@philheath)

He went on to the University of Denver, where he attended on an athletic scholarship and played shooting guard for the University’s Division 1 team with great success. But it wasn’t until he left college that he decided to get into competitive bodybuilding in 2002.

It became clear that he was onto something special when he won the NPC USA Championships in 2005, which opened the doors for his first professional IFBB titles in 2006.

And Phil showed some wisdom by not entering the Mr. Olympia event in 2007 because he thought he had more work to do.

By focusing his efforts on the years after that, he managed to set himself up for what would become one of the most amazing success stories in professional bodybuilding.

“If you want something you've never had before, you gotta be willing to do something you've never done before.”

- Phil Heath

His Approach to Workouts

phil heath working out

Phil Heath's workout regimen, surprisingly standard for a pro bodybuilder, involves about 2 hours daily at the gym, encompassing warm-ups, stretches, and cool-down cardio.

Despite his high-level achievements, his training routine has remained fairly consistent, an approach that has evidently served him well across his Mr. Olympia wins.

In my coaching experience, just like Phil Heath, I've found that a consistent 2-hour daily workout routine, balancing warm-ups, main exercises, and cool-downs, is effective for both beginners and pros.

If it ain’t broke, don’t try to fix it. What I did find surprising is that he would dedicate one whole training day to cardio, which is something most bodybuilders avoid.

But it may have to do with his need to feel fit as well as strong, and some studies suggest that cardio could have a positive impact on reducing fatigue, according to the  Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition [1].

Emphasizing the journey of bodybuilding, Phil Heath advocates for patience and long-term commitment, highlighting that substantial physique changes are a gradual process, often spanning over several years.

Phil Heath Workout Routine Sample

So, here’s how one of the most successful Mr. Olympia spent his time at the gym. Each session would take about 2 hours, including the warm-up and cool-down phases.

youtube

Day 1 (Legs)

leg curls

All of these workouts are 4 sets of 10 reps pushing it to failure.

  • Deadlifts
  • Leg curls
  • Front squats
  • Standing calf raises
  • Leg press
  • Seated calf raises
  • Leg extensions
  • Back squats
  • Heavy weighted lunges

Day 2 (Chest and Triceps)

dips

Slow and quality motion is the key in this routine, and you’ll be doing 4 sets of 10 reps again.

  • Dumbbell press
  • Dumbbell flys
  • Triceps pushdown
  • Weighted push-ups
  • Lying triceps extension
  • Dips
  • Triceps kickbacks

Day 3 (Rest)

Some stretching might be helpful if you find the first two days cause stiffness. If you did them right, then you should be sore.

Day 4 (Back and Biceps)

seated rows

Today, it’s time to bulk up those arms. You’ll want to pick something heavy and ideally increase the weight in each of the 4 sets of 10 reps.

  • Weighted wide pull-ups
  • Weighted chin ups
  • Seated rows
  • Hammer curls
  • Hammer bench press
  • One-arm dumbbell rows
  • EZ-bar curls
  • Concentration curls
  • Lat pulldowns

Related: Phil Heath Arm Workouts

Day 5 (Shoulders)

shoulder press

Keep to 4 sets of 10 reps.

  • Weighted military press
  • Shrugs (dumbbell)
  • Front raises
  • Lateral raises
  • Upright rows
  • Shrugs (heavy barbell)
  • Side raises

Day 6 (Cardio)

On this day, you want to mix things up a bit. Aim for using a rower, elliptical, treadmill, or exercise bike. It’s all about raising your fitness levels to help you build up some more endurance.

From my training sessions, I can vouch for Phil Heath's approach on cardio day; mixing activities like rowing and cycling keeps the routine dynamic and effective.

Day 7 (Rest)

Again, some stretching should help you reduce stiffness and speed up the muscle recovery period.

Other great  physiques:

What Does His Diet Plan Look Like?

nutrition

To train like Mr. Olympia, you’ll probably need to spend as much time eating as training. Here is a diet plan that we have gathered from a few different sources.

In my experience as a coach, balancing training with a diet similar to Phil Heath's, rich in protein and carbs, is vital for any serious bodybuilder.

Our dietitian said that this is a likely set up considering the amount of muscle Phil Heath’s diet had to support.

A detailed insight into Phil Heath's diet reveals a meticulous balance of high-quality protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats, with his meal plan and supplements changing according to his training season.

Meal 1
  • 12 oz chicken breast (yes, for breakfast!)
  • 8 egg omelet (more protein)
  • Cup of creamed rice (carb boost)
  • Bowl of fresh fruit salad

Meal 2

  • 12 oz lean ground beef
  • 1-2 cups of white rice (post-workout carb boost)

Meal 3

  • 6-8 oz of pasta
  • 12 oz beef tenderloin

Meal 4

  • Large bowl of fresh salad
  • 8 oz white chicken breast
Meal 5
  • A cup of leafy greens
  • Cup of brown rice

Meal 6

  • 8 oz ground beef
  • 3 medium-sized sweet potato

Meal 7

  • Large protein shake at the end of the day to boost night-time recovery

The Macro Breakdown

protein

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the above meal plan is heavily focused on protein and carbs.

And Phil has occasionally spoken about keeping fat to an absolute minimum, even when it comes to healthy fats that you might get from vegetables and fish.

The other thing to keep in mind is that this is a very high-calorie diet.

During peak training times, this would amount to 5,000+ calories every day, which is more than double the average intake. 

In my experience as a coach, I have found that some of the serious bodybuilders I work with struggle more with eating food than putting in the time at the gym.

To correctly choose foods that balance the calorie intake in your body, calculate the macro profile using our macro calculator.

The data you get from the macro calculator will help you break down calories from fats, proteins, and carbohydrates.


Made By: TotalShape

Phil Heath’s Supplement Stack

A guy holding a beverage

Supplements featured high on Phil’s daily agenda. Like Phil, I advise my trainees on the importance of supplements like Whey Protein and BCAAs, which are essential for muscle recovery and growth.

Here are the 4 most likely ones he took on a daily basis.

1. Whey Protein

Whey protein provides the full amino acid profile for muscle recovery and growth, according to the Amino Acids [2]. And with the above routine, you’d probably need to take about 90 grams of whey spread out over the day.

Phil has also mentioned a few times that a protein shake was his go-to evening snack to get the most out of his sleep.

2. Pre-Workout

If you want to avoid premature fatigue, then a pre-workout is a must. Not only can it boost your physical performance, but it can focus your mind better on the task ahead to improve your levels of motivation.

3. BCAA

These are becoming increasingly popular due to several studies proving their benefits for muscle recovery. It’s something you should consider mixing in with your post-workout protein shake.

4. Mass Gainer

Here’s a secret weapon to use if you’re simply sick of spending hours every day eating food. With the right, you should be able to replace at least one meal with up to 1,000 calories.

And because it’s a simple shake with an ideal combination of protein and carbs, it should save you a ton of time chewing.


References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4033492/
  2.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6245118/
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About The Author

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC is an ex-National Soccer player turned MMA and Kickboxing champion, with ACE CPT and PN1-NC certifications. His advice is rooted in education and experience, ensuring that readers receive scientific and battle-tested insights. His mission is to empower his clients and readers to realize their potential and become the best versions of themselves.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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