Ronnie “The King” Coleman’s Complete Bodybuilding Workout

ronnie coleman the king workout

This weeklong schedule for a full body lift from one of the greats will give you serious gains in your bodybuilding goals.

Designing a single workout can pose challenges, from selecting exercises and determining reps to targeting specific muscle groups. Planning a week’s workouts may seem daunting, leaving you feeling disheartened. However, we can take inspiration from one of the bodybuilding greats, an 8x Mr. Olympia champion. In this post, we will detail Ronnie “The King” Coleman’s comprehensive weekly workout schedule, suggesting optimal muscle group pairings and prescribed sets and reps to help you attain a more impressive physique.

ronnie coleman the king workout

Who is Ronnie Coleman?

Ronnie Coleman is considered one of the greatest bodybuilders of all time. With eight Mr. Olympia wins, he took the bodybuilding circuit by storm, cementing himself in the history books as one of the best to ever partake in the sport. His early life saw a very athletic Coleman, but bodybuilding wasn’t yet in the cards. It was an introduction to a gym owner who offered Coleman a free membership if he let him train Coleman for bodybuilding competitions that sparked this journey. Once going pro, there was no stopping Coleman, a sheer force winning what seemed like every competition he entered.

Eventually, that hard work and determination, matched by sheer natural ability, would see Ronnie “The King” Coleman hold the Olympia title eight consecutive times. Coleman held the record for most IFBB wins with 26 titles for many years. That record was broken by Dexter Jackson, but Coleman’s legacy remains even more intact as a legend. Coleman’s reign would end in 2006, but his place in history was already set in stone.

Before diving into the workout, we should note that Ronnie Coleman admits he wasn’t natural and started taking steroids when he was 30 years old. Ronnie Coleman also opted for natural supplements to help maintain his bulked-up body, building an incredible physique off of them. Let’s dive into Ronnie “The King” Coleman’s workout below.

ronnie coleman

Ronnie Coleman Training Routine

This full week-long workout schedule will fire you up on all cylinders and ensure you hit each muscle group at least twice weekly. High volume usually means lighter weight, but do what feels comfortable. Your body will adjust to the load and volume over time, and those gains will start to pop.

Start to gear your training towards mind-muscle connection. This is the ability to release yourself from all unnecessary distractions and focus on your muscles, specifically, a certain targeted muscle with a specific movement. More communication with your brain and muscle will recruit more muscle fibers to start to see big gains.

This intermediate to advanced level workout is great for those looking to change their routine while providing a serious challenge. Ronnie “The King” Coleman didn’t get to be his size out of nowhere, and this workout is proof of just how much it takes to be a legend in this sport.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Ronnie Coleman (@ronniecoleman8)

Monday – Biceps, Back & Shoulders

Exercises Set Reps
Deadlift 3 8-10
Barbell Rows 3 8-12
T-Bar Rows 3 8-12
Barbell Curls 4 8-10
Preacher Curls 4 8-10
Cable Curls 4 10-12
Military Press 3 8-10
Seated Dumbbell Press 3 8-10
Front Dumbbell Press 3 8-10

Tuesday – Legs

Exercises Sets Reps
Squats 5 5-8
Leg Press 5 5-8
Hamstring Curls 3 8-12
Stiff Leg Deadlifts 3 8-12
Lunges 3 10 each leg

Wednesday – Chest & Triceps

Exercises Sets Reps
Bench Press 5 5-8
Incline Bench Press 3 8-12
Close Grip Bench Press 3 8-12
Dumbbell Flyes 4 8-10
Dumbbell Press 4 8-10
Seated Dumbbell Extensions 4 8-12
Seated Cambered Bar Extensions 4 8-12

Thursday – Biceps, Back & Shoulders

Exercises Sets Reps
Barbell Rows 4 8-12
Low Pulley Rows 4 12-15
Spider Curls 4 10-12
Machine Curls 4 10-12
Seated Dumbbell Press 4 8-10
Lat Pulldowns 3 8-12
Front Lat Pulldowns 3 8-12
Standing Cable Curls 3 12-15
Front Lateral Dumbbell Raises 3 10-12
Machine Raises 3 8-10

Friday – Legs

Exercise Sets Reps
Front Squats 5 8-12
Leg Extensions 4 12-15
Standing Leg Curls 4 12-15
Hack Squats 3 10-12
Lying Leg Curls 3 10-12

Saturday – Chest, Triceps & Calves

Exercise Sets Reps
Incline Dumbbell Press 4 8-12
Incline Dumbbell Flyes 4 8-12
Skullcrushers 4 8-10
Machine Pressdown Dips 4 8-10
Decline Bench Press 4 8-12
Decline Dumbbell Press 4 8-12
Seated Tricep Extension 3 8-12
Seated Calf Raises 3 10-12
Donkey Raises 3 10-12
Crunches 3 AMRAP

Workout Notes

ronnie coleman natural

Let’s take a look at some of the notes to keep in mind when it comes to following the Ronnie Coleman workout routine.

How Much Weight Should You Use?

For training, it’s important to hit all your reps, so starting with a weight you can confidently hit is key to maximizing optimal growth. But you must use a heavy enough load to push yourself to stimulate muscle growth. The weight should be heavy enough to barely get you in the rep range for each set with good form.

Once you settle into a weight, bump the pounds up and see what that does for you and your workout. Of course, you can throw in a drop set at the end of the workout if you’d like, but this full body workout from Coleman should be enough of a monster to satisfy you.


Be sure to stretch out those muscles before, during, and after this workout. You’ll want to incorporate some dynamic stretching before and static stretching after your workout for the best results.

Those leg days will be killers, and if you sprinkle in cardio, taking care of your body is more than key for overall health and longevity. Stretching will promote muscle growth while aiding in recovery and proper rest for your body.

What About Sunday?

Take the day off and enjoy other things you love! With the volume in Coleman’s workout, you’ll need to add rest days throughout the week. Your muscles grow while you’re resting, not in the gym. Rest days will give your body, mind, muscles, and joints the rest they need to recover between workouts. Without them, you only risk overtraining and hindering muscle growth.

Watch Ronnie Coleman annihilate his back and biceps with the 2022 Mr. Olympia runner up Derek Lunsford below. (This video was uploaded in April of 2023 to Derek Lunsford’s YouTube channel.):

Ronnie Coleman: The King

Generation Iron even got the chance to profile Ronnie Coleman in the movie Ronnie Coleman: The King. Check out the trailer below:

Stream and watch Ronnie Coleman The King, for a full documentary of his bodybuilding journey.

Wrap Up

Ronnie Coleman’s exceptional work ethic and natural ability propelled him to be one of the greatest bodybuilders ever. With a remarkable track record, including eight consecutive Olympia, wins and numerous other titles, his lengthy and illustrious career has solidified his reputation in the sport. Now, as a promoter, Coleman aspires to impart the knowledge and strategies that led to his success, inspiring others to embark on their remarkable journeys.

This comprehensive full body workout routine is a true beast that saves you time in planning, allowing you to focus solely on your training. Learning from the best is the ultimate path toward improvement, and this workout by Coleman serves as a prime example we should all follow. Get ready to push yourself to the limits like Coleman and witness the impressive gains that await you!

Follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more bodybuilding workouts from the greats!

*Images courtesy of Ronnie Coleman Instagram & Envato

Austin Letorney
Austin Letorney is a writer, actor, and fitness enthusiast. As a former rower, he has shifted his focus to sharing his knowledge of the fitness world and strength sports with others.