When Cristiano Ronaldo Continued the Game Although He Has Pain/Injury (3 examples)
How Cristiano Ronaldo Tackles His Leg Day For Lean Muscle
There aren't many sports fans that haven't admired Cristiano Ronaldo for his lean, athletic physique.
While, of course, his skill and finesse on the pitch make the headlines, his body transformation continues to be one of the best in the sporting world.
(Related: Why Cristiano Ronaldo is the ultimate human)
Going from a buck-toothed newbie playing in grizzly Premier League games with Manchester United to out-pacing (and out-playing) the world's hardiest players with Real Madrid, Ronaldo's transformation has been a remarkable one. Crucially, this meant that CR7 could roll with the tackles that characterise English football and keep a signature finesse that would help him hit home time and time again.
But what does a Cristiano Ronaldo's workout look like? Specifically, how did he bulk-up down below to build stronger legs and more explosive power?
(Related: How Cristiano Ronaldo became the best in the world)
Here, we take a look at the Sultan of the Stepover's leg routine.
Barbell Back Squat: 4x8
If you're looking to bulk-up down there, few leg day exercises can oust the barbell back squat. Helping your testosterone skyrocket — and a known calorie-crusher — these will help you generate lower-body power like nothing else. To activate the most muscles as possible, including your glutes, go full ROM, with your upper-legs dropping below parallel.
(Related: Is this why your squats aren't working?)
- Stand with your feet more than shoulder-width apart and hold a barbell across your upper back with an overhand grip – avoid resting it on your neck.
- Hug the bar into your traps to engage your upper back muscles. Slowly sit back into a squat with head up, back straight and backside out.
- Lower until your hips are aligned with your knees, with your legs at 90 degrees – a deeper squat will be more beneficial but get the strength and flexibility first.
- Drive your heels into the floor to push yourself explosively back up. Keep form until you’re stood up straight: that’s one.
Barbell Deadlift: 4x8
One of the most primal weightlifting moves, the not-so-humble deadlift is bragging gold when you hit a PB. So, when you're looking to weaponise your pins and turn them from pistols to bazookas, you'll want to incorporate this into your routine.
If you're a taller chap, opt for a trap bar or place a raise — like another weight-plate or a wooden block — underneath your working weight to make the journey down a little easier.
(Related: How to easily add 20kg onto your deadlift)
- Squat down and grasp a barbell with your hands roughly shoulder-width apart.
- Keep your chest up, pull your shoulders back and look straight ahead as you lift the bar. Focus on taking the weight back onto your heels and keep the bar as close as possible to your body at all times.
- Lift to thigh level, pause, then return under control to the start position.
Leg Press: 4x10
Smart trainers won't shirk the weight machines when it comes to building bigger, stronger, faster legs. If you struggle with racking up the weight on your squats, a heavy leg press is a perfect alternative, encouraging muscular growth at a quicker rate, without loading weight on your spine or depending on stabilising muscles.
- In the leg press machine position your feet shoulder-width apart on the platform and raise until your legs are outstretched without locking your knees.
- Slowly lower the platform until your knees are at 90 degrees to the floor
- Then push back to the start position through your heels.
Leg Extension: 4x12
The leg extension will kill off your quads. An isolation exercise, it will help beef-up your quads for extra power for your squats and box jumps. Likewise, CR7 himself will use these (and the single-leg variant) to build up kicking power for world-class finishes.
- Sit in a leg extension machine with your ankles against the lower pad.
- Use your quads to push forward and straighten your legs in front of you
- Return to the start position and repeat
Box Jumps: 45 seconds on, 15 secs off x5
Helping increase your strength, muscle tone and explosive power, the box jump is a staple for footballers, tennis players and boxers alike. An hours' worth of jumping can burn 1000kcal, so if a lean physique is on your to-do list, then these are a must.
(Related: The world's most insane box jumps)
Similarly, you can adapt and scale box jumps, including single leg work — you only run on one leg, after all — addition weights and other bodyweight moves such as burpees or deep squats.
- Set yourself a comfortable distance from the box with feet shoulder-width apart.
- Drop quickly into a quarter squat, swing your arms and explode upwards to jump onto the box. Land as softly as possible.
- Now step backwards off the box under control.
Video: Cristiano Ronaldo ► Top 5 Horror Injuries ever in his Career | HD
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