Generation Iron Mike Matarazzo Calves“I train my calves the same as anything else—hard and heavy.”

It was a sad day on Saturday, August 16th to find out that Mike Matarazzo had passed away. To many, he will always be remembered for his incredible friendliness and humble acknowledgement of his fans. Or perhaps he will be remembered for the way he would stick out his tongue whenever he flexed his massive muscles. But to us, he will always be remembered for his immense and powerful calves. Mike Matarazzo may not have been the most perfect bodybuilder in history – but he had calves that would make even Mr. Olympia champions jealous.

To honor Mike Matarazzo’s life and spirit – we dug deep into the archives of Flex Online and pulled out Mike’s personal calf workout routine:

Standing Calf Raises – 4 x 10
Seated Calf Raises – 4 x 10
Toe Presses – 4 x 10

While the workout might be simple, there are some key notes that Mike shared so that you can maximize muscle gains in your calves. Mike Matarazzo claimed that he would train with the heaviest weight possible and would make sure that it was impossible for him to push past the 10 reps that he set for himself. He would often scream in pain for the last couple of reps – that’s how he knew he was getting the ultimate workout.

Always make sure to get full range of motion with your legs. This is key to getting that perfect calf shape you so desperately desire.

One last tip from the late calf master. He would always state that his extreme calves came from his background in boxing. That’s right, before Mike was a pro bodybuilder he used to train as a boxer. He remembers that his fellow boxers were always keeping on their toes during training and footwork. They would even walk on their toes to keep that perfect shape. While this might sound silly and might not work for everyone – this came straight out of Mike Matarazzo’s mouth – and you can’t argue with those results.


Even if you don’t desire to model your calves after Mike Matarazzo – make sure to do a few calf raises in his honor this week. We lost a great bodybuilder and even greater man. He will always be remembered in our minds and our heart. Feel free to share any of your favorite Mike Matarazzo memories in the comments – or express your well wishes on our Facebook and Twitter. You can read the entire breakdown of Mike’s calf fundamentals right here.


Photo courtesy of Steel Factor Forum.

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