Bertil Fox Training Routine

Bertil Fox (born 5 January 1951 in St. Kitts) is a British former IFBB professional bodybuilder.

In 1979 he easily won the NABBA Professional Mr. Universe title. He was so far ahead that they didn’t even have a posedown between him and runner up Dave Johns.

How did he achieve all this? Work work and more work! He preferred working out rather than talking and chatting. He practiced the Arnold philosophy of willing!


Bertil Fox was naturally built with tremendous potential. But he was also coached into training properly right from the very beginning. His coach and training partner in those days was a guy named Henry Greaves, who had a terrific physique and 19 inch arm.

At this time Bertil was only 15 years old, he trained with this great bodybuilding champion, hardly ever missing a workout.

Bertil and Henry were training four nights a week on a split routine using very basic exercise, lot of sets, loads of weight, and a lot of sweat.

When Bertil first started training he had the following measurements, weight 160lb, chest 37 inches, thigh 19 inches, calf 13 1/2 inches and arms 12 1/2 inches.

Two years later his arms measured an amazing 18 1/2 inches. Here is Bertil’s arm workout he followed to gain those 6 inches. Training his biceps and triceps twice a week Bertil did three different super sets for them.

First Superset
Exercise Set Rep
Preacher Curl using a straight bar and 6 8
Triceps pulley pressdown using a straight bar and narrow grip 6 10


Second Superset
Exercise Set Rep
Standing  alternate dumbbell curls and 6 8
Very close grip tricep pushdowns with his upper bent forward to a 45 degree angle 6 10


Last superset
Exercise Set Rep
One arm curls on an incline bench (his favorite exercise) and 6 8
Dumbbell tricep kick Backs lying face down on 45 degree incline bench 6 8


Bertil Fox’ usual routine when training heavy consisted of 20-30 sets per bodypart
Chest Set/Rep Weight
Dumbell Bench Press 5×10 195lb
Barbell Bench Press working up from 400lb to 5 reps x 500lb
Incline Dumbell Press 5×10 165lb
Light Incline Press 5×10 120lb
Seated Dumbell Press Together 5×8 125lb
Seated Press Behind Neck 5×8 250lb
Dumbell Lateral Raises Standing and Bent-over
End-of-Bar Rowing 5×8 400lb
Single-Arm Dumbell Bent-over Rowing 5×8 150lb
Chinning to Bar tied on Side-to side Chinning (a la Alan Stephen 1946 Mr. America) 120lb
Barbell Shrugs 5×10 350lb
(trained each workout period)    
Incline Dumbell Curls 5×8 85lb
Close-grip Barbell Curls (Heavy as possible until arms pumped) 150lb
Preacher Bench Dumbell Curls 8×8 85lb
Lat Machine Pushdowns 8 sets max. 150lb
Reverse Grip Triceps Presses on Incline Bench 8 sets max. 180lb
Thighs and Calves    
Standing Calves Machine 10×10 800lb
Back Squats 5×10 500lb
Leg Extensions 8×20 80lb
Leg Curls slow very strict style 8×20 100lb
Plus a daily session of posing practice and muscle tensing cuts    

Bertil Fox’ secret: heavy weights!

The following was transcribed from Bertil Fox’s workout video. Arnold and Bertil were sitting on a bench at World Gym. It was sometime in 1983.

Interviewer: Could I just get a comment about Bertil Fox? What do you think of his body type and do you admire it?

Arnold: “Well, I was from the day one when I saw Bertil compete in London at the Mr. Universe contest and he became the big sensation, which was in the mid seventies. I was a big admirer of his. Simply because he represents the traditional bodybuilder and strongman. Which means that he doesn’t only have huge muscles, with a nice V-shaped body, huge deltoids, small waist, and great proportions.

But he also has enormous strength. And that is the key to the whole thing, you know. To not only look muscular and huge, but also be strong according to the whole thing. And he is as strong as they come. I mean, I’ve seen him Bench Press way over 500lb/226kg. I have seen him Squat with way over 600lb/272kg. And do Flyes with 120’s in each hand. I mean, things that I’ve never seen anybody do. And so, I think that he is like the new bodybuilder to be. I mean, he is like the big time of the day. And I’m really looking forward for him to win the Mr. Olympia contest and to take over the whole scene. Which is just around the corner.”

Bertil paid great attention to diet: Four pounds of protein powder per week. During Workouts he consumed a potent concotion of protein, skim milk and eggs. There were a daily quantities of multi-vitamin and mineral supplements.

At a bodyweight of 220lb his measurements are: 

Height 5’9″ 175cm
Chest 52″ 132cm
Waist 30″ 76cm
Arms 21″ 53cm
Thighs 27 1/2″ 69cm
Calves 19 1/2″ 49cm




1 thought on “Bertil Fox Training Routine”

  1. foxy got screwed in ifbb shows i have seen pics with him and haney every body part is bigger and better than haneys 1983 was the biggest con since francos win against padilla and callender platz etc think this show destroyed bertil. Shame there such politics in bodybuilding


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