Franco Columbu Powerlifting
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Powerlifting for Mass
Take a look at the background of some of the top bodybuilders and you will see definite ties to other muscle working sports. Arnold was involved in both Olympic style lifting and powerlifting. So too was his pal Franco Columbu. In fact Franco was even better at Arnold in powerlifting, and was good enough to haul in some titles.
Franco is considered one of the strongest (pound for pound) bodybuilders of all time. Franco started off as a powerlifter and gravitated toward bodybuilding after meeting Arnold.
Franco used a dual approach to training – a mix of both bodybuilding and powerlifting styles. A few other bodybuilders have done this, and all have been very thick, strong and powerful. One of the modern bodybuilders who included powerlifting action in his training approach was Ronnie Coleman, who like Franco, won multiple Mr. Olympia titles. The powerlifting-bodybuilding connection works.
Franco performed bodybuilding style workouts, but he also included powerlifting training as well, featuring heavy deadlifts, bench presses and squats. The result was a body that was both big and strong. An example of Franco’s mix – even as he trained for the Mr. Olympia (1981) he kept in some powerlifting elements. For example this superset he used
Barbell bench presses: 3 * Sets of 15, 10, 4 Reps
Cable crossovers: 3 * Sets, Reps 20
He worked with both higher repetition pump sets, but also included those 4 rep power movements as well.
Franco had mind-bending strength. He could burst water bottles with the power of his lungs, and could pick up and move cars. Although he only weighed 180-190 pounds, he deadlifted 727 pounds, which gives you an example of his strength.
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