Body Prodigy: Improve Your Physique With Brandon Curry’s Plan

Brandon Curry has been on the brink of stardom for so long, it's easy to forget he's still just 31. See his plan to go to the next level!

A few years ago, I saw a profile of a young bodybuilder on Bodybuilding.com that, while brief, nevertheless stuck with me. He was cleaning house in amateur competitions at just 22 years old, but more impressively, he already had the type of development that other guys spend their whole lives pursuing. The makings of a world-class physique were plain to see: clean lines, incredible definition, and the aesthetics of a young Flex Wheeler. I thought: This guy is going places.

I was right. Brandon Curry continued to squash the amateurs, and he earned his 212 division pro card in 2008, serving notice that he was here to stay. He became the subject of an ongoing web series called "Brandon Curry: Unleashed," and complementary cover stories started showing up in "Flex" and elsewhere with headlines like "10 Things We Hate About Brandon Curry."

Since then, Brandon has grabbed a dozen top-10 finishes as an IFBB Pro, including an eighth place finish at the 2011 Olympia, and most people expect him to keep climbing the ranks. At 31, he is still one of the younger pros at that level, but Curry's humble attitude and work ethic will keep him in the race for the big one. With his legs coming up in size and better timing in his conditioning, I'm convinced Brandon has the ability to push into the top five in the world.

Other than picking the right parents, how does a prospect become a prodigy? With hard, straightforward training and an airtight nutrition and supplementation plan that's built to last.

A Man on the Make

Take a look at Brandon's programs, and it's clear that he puts heavy emphasis on his weak points, rather than focusing on what he's best at. That's one major difference between a seasoned pro and the amateurs who fantasize about becoming one.

While he trains most muscle groups with high volume once per week, Brandon's legs receive a double treatment, splitting each session into two parts so he can pour all his energy and focus into his quads and hams. Additionally, he doesn't do a lot of direct ab or arm work.

Brandon has excellent arms already, and his small waist accentuates his aesthetic build, giving him that classic bodybuilding look. Too much additional abdominal work would likely only serve to make him appear bulky, and "mass monster" isn't Brandon's game.

A high-performance machine like Curry also has to take in a lot of fuel. He's eaten as many as eight meals per day in recent years, but is currently happy at six daily meals made up of large amounts of lean meat alongside small amounts of clean carbs. He selects fats carefully and satisfies his sweet tooth with nonfat Jello pudding or nonfat frozen yogurt.

Once a week he indulges in a cheat meal. This is a simple strategy that will work well for his followers, but they should be advised to monitor the quantities unless they are feeding as much muscle as Brandon does.

Brandon's supplementation is similarly built around the classics: protein, BCAAs, and carbs. He stays stoked for growth with 20 grams of aminos when he wakes up and intra-workout, along with a hefty amount of BSN Volumaize. Since his diet is pretty lean, Brandon also augments his fat intake with essential fatty acids.

Here's what a recent five-week cycle looked like for Brandon:

Weeks 1-3
  • Monday: Quads, Hams, and Calves
  • Tuesday: Chest and Back
  • Wednesday: Shoulders and Arms
  • Thursday: Rest
  • Friday: Rest
  • Saturday: Quads, hams, and calves
  • Sunday: Chest and Back
Weeks 4-5
  • Monday: Chest
  • Tuesday: Back
  • Wednesday: Legs
  • Thursday: Shoulders and Arms
  • Friday: Rest
  • Saturday: Quads, Hams, and Calves
  • Sunday: Rest
  • Cardio: 30 minutes after workout or in morning, 5 days per week

Weeks 1-3

*Perform this exercise "21"-style: First set is bottom half range of motion, second set is top half range of motion, and third set is full range of motion.

Day 1: Quads/Hams/Calves
AM: Quads
    • Leg Extensions Leg Extensions Leg Extensions
      4 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Front Barbell Squat Front Barbell Squat Front Barbell Squat
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Leg Press Leg Press Leg Press
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Hack Squat Hack Squat *Hack Squat
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
PM: Hams and Calves
  • Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Lying Leg Curls Lying Leg Curls Lying Leg Curls
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Seated Leg Curl Seated Leg Curl *Seated Leg Curl
    3 sets of 5-7 reps
  • Standing Calf Raises Standing Calf Raises Standing Calf Raises
    4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine
    4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise *Seated Calf Raise
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
Day 2: Chest and Back
AM: Chest
    • Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Incline Dumbbell Flyes Incline Dumbbell Flyes Incline Dumbbell Flyes
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Machine Bench Press Machine Bench Press Machine Bench Press
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Flat Bench Cable Flyes Flat Bench Cable Flyes *Flat Bench Cable Flyes
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
PM: Back
  • Chin-Up Chin-Up Wide-grip Chin-Up
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Pullups Pullups Pullups
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Bent Over Barbell Row Bent Over Barbell Row Bent Over Barbell Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • One-Arm Dumbbell Row One-Arm Dumbbell Row One-Arm Dumbbell Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Straight-Arm Pulldown Straight-Arm Pulldown *Straight-Arm Pulldown
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
Day 3: Shoulders/Traps/Arms
AM: Shoulders and Traps
    • Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press
      4 sets of 8-12 reps
      Alternative Option:
      Smith Machine Military Press
    • Front Dumbbell Raise Front Dumbbell Raise Front Dumbbell Raise
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Machine Shoulder (Military) Press Machine Shoulder (Military) Press *Machine Shoulder (Military) Press
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Dumbbell Shrug Dumbbell Shrug Dumbbell Shrug
      4 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Barbell Shrug Barbell Shrug Barbell Shrug
      4 sets of 8-12 reps (with 2-second pause at top)
PM: Arms
  • EZ-Bar Curl EZ-Bar Curl EZ-Bar Curl
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Concentration Curls Concentration Curls Concentration Curls
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Preacher Curl Preacher Curl *Preacher Curl
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Bench Dips Bench Dips Bench Dips
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Close-Grip Barbell Bench Press Close-Grip Barbell Bench Press Close-Grip Barbell Bench Press
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Lying Triceps Press Lying Triceps Press *Lying Triceps Press
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
Day 4: Rest
Day 5: Rest
Day 6: Quads, Hams, and Calves
AM: Quads
    • Leg Extensions Leg Extensions Leg Extensions
      4 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Front Barbell Squat Front Barbell Squat Front Barbell Squat
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Leg Press Leg Press Leg Press
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Hack Squat Hack Squat *Hack Squat
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
PM: Hams and Calves
  • Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Lying Leg Curls Lying Leg Curls Lying Leg Curls
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Seated Leg Curl Seated Leg Curl *Seated Leg Curl
    3 sets of 5-7 reps
  • Standing Calf Raises Standing Calf Raises Standing Calf Raises
    4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine
    4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise *Seated Calf Raise
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
Day 7: Chest and Back
AM: Chest
    • Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Incline Dumbbell Flyes Incline Dumbbell Flyes Incline Dumbbell Flyes
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Machine Bench Press Machine Bench Press Machine Bench Press
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Flat Bench Cable Flyes Flat Bench Cable Flyes *Flat Bench Cable Flyes
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
    • Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment Triceps Pushdown - Rope Attachment
      3 sets of 8-12 reps
PM: Back
  • Chin-Up Chin-Up Wide-grip Chin-Up
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Pullups Pullups Pullups
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Bent Over Barbell Row Bent Over Barbell Row Bent Over Barbell Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • One-Arm Dumbbell Row One-Arm Dumbbell Row One-Arm Dumbbell Row
    3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Straight-Arm Pulldown Straight-Arm Pulldown *Straight-Arm Pulldown
    3 sets of 8-12 reps

Brandon's Nutrition

Upon Rising
Meal 1
  • beef Lean Beef

    8 oz

  • eggs Egg Whites

    4

  • grits Grits

    3 oz

  • wheat toast Whole-wheat Toast, dry

    2 slices

Meal 2
  • chicken Chicken Breast

    8 oz

  • rice White Rice

    1 1/2 cups

  • broccoli Broccoli

    1 cup

  • olive oil Olive Oil

    10 g

Meal 3
  • chicken Chicken Breast

    8 oz

  • potato Potato

    10 oz

  • asparagus Asparagus

    1 cup

  • olive oil Olive Oil

    10 g

Meal 4
  • salmon Salmon

    8 oz

  • rice White Rice

    1 1/2 cups

  • Salad Salad

    1 serving

Meal 5

Supplements

Upon Rising
Pre-workout
During Workout
Post-workout (And on rest days)