Dorian Yates Workout Routine and Diet Plan: The Legendary Bodybuilder

Last Updated: March 16, 2022

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Dorian is a legendary professional bodybuilder. He is well known for having won Mr. Olympian for six years in a row between 1992 and 1997. For this and other achievements in the bodybuilding industry, Dorian is considered one of the most successful athletes in the history of modern bodybuilding. 

He is highly attributed to a form of training known as High Intensity Training (HIT). It advocates for maximum muscle stimulation being achieved via short but highly intense sessions instead of long workout durations. 

The legend has since retired, and chronic cute illnesses, especially torn triceps and bices, were a siginificant part in ending his professional career. Even so, Yates has gone ahead to form a bodybuilding supplements company in partnership with Kerry Kayes. 

Let’s look at his workout routine and diet plan and get to see how he achieved his physique. But first, a little indepth backgoround on who Dorian Yates is.

Who Is Dorian Yates?

Dorian Yates’s full name is Dorian Andrew Mientjez Yates. However, he is also fondly known as ‘The Shadow’ because he tended to appear in bodybuilding contests unexpectedly and emerged a winner. Yates was born in Walmley, The Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield in the UK. He, however, grew up in a rural part of Staffordish known as Harley.

In the early ’80s, Dorian was hanging out with his mates and found himself in trouble. He was, for six months, sent to a youth detention center, where he kept himself busy and entertained through powerlifting. Dorian had packed on muscles within no time, and he soon realized that he could succeed as an athlete.

It was in the detention center that this legend first got a reputation for his built physique. He seriously started working out aged 21 in 1983, and in 1991, he was the Olympia runner-up. Dorian returned the following year, dominating the sport, winning six continuous awards as Mr. Olympian.

Before retiring, he participated in 1997 amid torn biceps and triceps but still emerged victorious. The legend holds a remarkable two 2nd place finishes and 15 pro record wins during his bodybuilding career.

Dorian Yates Workout Routine

Dorian Yates’s wins did not come in vain. He practiced various workout exercises that helped him remain focused. In addition, he has a set routine that he follows, targeting different groups of muscles and joints on different days. 

The bodybuilder understands the importance of resting to allow the body to fully recover and thus, incorporates rest days in his workout routine.

Before we get into it, take a look through Dorian Yates’ tips on bodybuilding through his Blood & Guts program:

Dorian Yates Daily Workout Routine

Monday: Triceps, Shoulder, and Abs Workout

The former professional bodybuilder incorporates nine exercises in his Monday routine that target abs, shoulders, and triceps. As expected, he starts with warming sets before proceeding to the working sets. 

  • 2 sets, 10 -12 reps of warm-ups followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10 -12 reps, dumbbell warm-up lat, raise followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up single arm cable lat raise followed by 8-10 reps of a sinlge working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up dumbbell shrugs followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10 – 12 reps, warm-up cable press down followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up lying EZ-Bar Tricep Extension followed by 6-8 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 20 reps, Roam chair sit-ups
  • 1 set, 20 reps, crunches
  • 1 set, 20 reps, reverse crunches

Tuesday: Back Workout

  • 2 sets, 10 – 12 reps, warm-up dumbbell pullover followed by 8-10 reps of one working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up hammer pulldowns followed by 8-1 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up reverse-grip hammer pulldown followed by 8-10 reps of a sinlge working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up single-arm dumbbell row followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps warm up wide-grip seating cable row followed by 10-12 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps of warm-up barbell deadlift followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 1 set, 8-10 reps of hyperextension

Wednesday: Rest Day

He takes a break from his regular workouts and instead rests.

Thursday: Biceps, Chest, and Abs Workout

On Thursdays, he targets his biceps, chest, and abs. Yates incorporates nine exercises in this routine which are:

  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up incline barbell bench press followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up machine chest press followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 8-10 reps, warm-up decline bench press followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up incline dumbbell flys of 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up flat bench dumbbell flys followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up cable crossover followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 10-12 reps, warm-up incline dumbbell biceps curl followed by 8-10 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 8-1 reps, warm-up standing EZ Bar biceps curl followed by 8-10 reps a single working set
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up machine preacher curl

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: Legs Workout

  • 2 sets, 12-14 reps, warm-up leg extensions followed by 10-12 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 12-14 reps, warm-up leg press followed by 10-12 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 12-14 reps, warm-up hack squat followed by 10-12 reps of a single working set
  • 2 sets, 12-14 reps, warm-up seating hamstring curl followed by 10-12 reps of a single working set

He then rests for 5 minutes before proceeding with the following three exercises.

  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up still-legged deadlift followed by 10-12 reps of one working set 
  • 3 sets of calf press till failure
  • 1 set, 10-12 reps, warm-up seating calf raises followed by 6-8 reps of 1 working set

Sunday: Rest Day

Once again, Dorian Yates rests on Sunday and allows his muscles to recover in preparation for the week ahead.

Dorian Yates Diet Plan

Nutrition is a significant part of bodybuilding. Yates has been in professional bodybuilding for a long and although, he has altered some of his practices and maintained some. Here are Dorian Yates’s guiding principles on his diet plan.

Dorian Yates Diet Details

Eat Protein

Yates is a firm believer that to build muscles, one needs to eat proteins regularly. He eats his proteins every few hours daily together with simple as well as complex carbs. Measure your body weight, then divide it by six. The result is the number of proteins you need to eat during each meal.

Power Up Before Training

Yates takes meal-replacement powders around 1.5 hours before training. However, he believes that the powders can be replaced with a balanced meal such as proteins and simple & complex carbs such as broccoli, rice, and chicken.

Healthy Meals

He takes his first meal between 7 am, and 8 am, which often comprises a cup of oatmeal porridge. His other meals may have potatoes, chicken breast, rice, and green vegetables during the day. In addition, he takes porridge made using half a cup of oatmeal plus six egg whites.

Watch Your Sugar Intake

Unlike the belief of most bodybuilders that one needs to take lots of carbs prior to a workout, Yates believes that this is a mistake because it may make the blood sugar levels drop during workout sessions. Such a scenario may lead to fatigue besides reduced endurance. 

Dorian Yates Daily Diet Plan

Yates believes that nutrition plays a great role in maximizing bodybuilding gains. He highly discourages skipping meals, and below is what his daily diet plan looks like below.

1st Meal

Yates takes porridge prepared from a cup of oatmeal

2nd Meal

Protein shake

3rd Meal

Green vegetables, two chicken breasts, and rice or potatoes

4th Meal

Protein shake

5th Meal

Green vegetables, 12 ounces fillet of mignon, and potato or rice

6th Meal

Yates’s last meal in a day is six egg whites and porridge prepared from ½ cup of oatmeal

What Dorian Yates Avoids

Yates avoids the following items;

  • Fast foods
  • Processed foods
  • Fried foods
  • Added sugar
  • Hydrogenated oils
  • Processed foods
  • Artificial additives
  • Junk foods

Supplements 

Glutamine: This supplement helps with protein synthesis by boosting performance and muscle gain, besides boosting digestion and immunity. 

BCAA’s: As with most athletes, Yates takes Branched-amino acids to aid his muscle gain and also quicken his recovery.

Whey Protein: Yates takes his protein several times during the day with intervals of about 2 hours. He supplements his protein intake with one of the best protein sources; Whey Protein. It helps build and repair lean body muscles.

Pre-Workout: He takes this supplement to enhance his endurance, focus, and performance.

Mass Gainer: This supplement helps bodybuilders and athletes, in general, to gain serious muscle mass in a shorter duration. It is a great choice for individuals who struggle with weight gain.

Conclusion

By chance, Dorian Yates might have discovered his ability to excel in a bodybuilding career. However, his dedication, passion, and discipline have kept him going and even made him win several highly competitive bodybuilding contests.

To incorporate Dorian Yates’s workout routine and diet plan in your life, first identify your body and its needs. You may need to twitch Yates’s exercises and diet a little to ensure that it fits your needs and lifestyle. 

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