Danny Padilla Mr. Olympia Workout Routine

Danny “The Giant Killer” Padilla was born Dennis Padilla on April 3, 1951. He was the sixth child for Ramon and Frances Padilla. When Danny was only seven years old he hatched his plan to make the Padilla family name famous.

He started bodybuilding at the age of seven. He had an older brother and a cousin who were both champion wrestlers in high school. They used to workout with some old York barbells in the basement. Danny would watch them train and slowly he got involved with it as well. He picked up the weights and it was like a drug. He was absolutely bitten by the iron bug and trained a full seven days a week.

He was 17 years old and was ready to compete. He won the Mr. Rochester in 1970 at age 18. It was his first show and he took home the first place trophy.

According to Danny his best shape was in the 1981 Olympia. In 1981 Mr. Olympia he competed against big wolves like Franco Columbo, Chris Dickerson, Jusup Wilkosz and Tom Platz. 

And now here’ Danny’s training and diet philosophy for the Mr. Olympia

He believed in the old high protein, low carb diet. He consumed as much protein as he could, six to eight pounds of meat a day. He also incorporated a certain amount of aerobics, but it was usually an aerobic workout where he was not straining the whole body. He used the stairmaster or a lifecycle. The closer it comes to the show; of course, he cutted the carbs down.

He was probably on 150 to 200 grams of carbs per day for most of the year. Then about two months before the show he went down to about 100 grams of carbs per day. Three months before the show he decided to use the old Arnold training regimen that they had used when he was out there in California.

They worked each bodypart three times a week on a double-split.
Of course they told him, that because he was an old man, it wouldn’t be possible for Danny to grow on an intense schedule like that. Well, he passed up all the young guns in my gym!

Danny: “I would just increase the calories. It’s all about calories, you must feed the machine. I would train chest and back in the morning, legs at night. Then I would train shoulders and arms the next morning plus calves and abs then next night. I would start the routine all over again Wednesday. And I grew on it.

Danny: “At that time, I was doing 20 minutes exactly. Then about two weeks before the show, I started doing 30 to 40 minutes on the stairmaster and as much as an hour on the lifecycle.”

In the last two weeks prior to the show he counted calories. On the first week he took 1500 calories and on the last week, 1000.
Monday before the contest he weighed exactly 157lb. On Wednesday he began to double his calories and double his carbs until Saturday.

Training Shedule

Chest and Back Sets Reps
Bench Press 5 12
Incline Bench Press 5 12
Flys 5 12
Dumbbell Pullovers 5 12
Chins 5 12
Bent Barbell Rows 5 12
Cable Pull 5 12
Deadlift (once a week) 5 12
Shoulders and Arms Sets Reps
Seated presses supersetted with: 5 12
Cable laterals 5 12
Dumbbell rear delt raise 5 12
Front Raises or Upright Rows 5 12
Dumbbell Curls 5 8
Barbell Curls 5 8
Concentration Curls or Preacher Curls 5 8
Lying triceps extensions 5 12
Seated overhead E-Z bar extensions 5 12
Pushdowns or one arm dumbbell overhead extensions 5 12
Legs and Abs Sets Reps
Leg Extensions 5 12
Squats 5 12
Leg Presses 5 12
Lying Leg Curls 5 12
Standing Leg Curls 5 12
Standing Calf Raises 5 12
Donkey Calf Raises 5 15
Seated Calf Raises 5 15
Crunches or Leg Raises 5 20


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