Classic Physique Bodybuilder Terrence Ruffin Shares His Push/Pull Workout Routine – BarBend

Two-time reigning Arnold Classic Physique champion Terrence Ruffin and the hypertrophy coach Joe Bennett revealed ‘Ruff Diesel’s’ updated push/pull workout routine in a video uploaded to the bodybuilder’s YouTube channel on April 26, 2022. Their game plan involves adding 10 pounds of muscle to Ruffin’s frame by bringing up his arms, legs, and back.

Ruffin was the Classic Physique Olympia runner-up to Chris Bumstead in 2020 and 2021, and the Alabama native looks to come back bigger and better in hopes of claiming the crown at the 2022 Olympia from December 16-18 in Las Vegas, NV. Check out Terrence Ruffin’s updated chest and back split. 

[Related: Bodybuilder Brett Wilkin Ups The Intensity To Train Chest And Delts]

Calves and Abs 

As Bennett noted, Ruffin prioritizes abs and calves at the beginning of his push/pull workout sessions, similar to the previous training split. The hypertrophy coach mentioned two movements in particular; hip-loaded calf raises and ab crunches.

Calves and abs may be an afterthought for many, but these are common weak areas for a lot of competitive bodybuilders, and no weaknesses are forgiven on pro bodybuilding’s competition stages. Ruffin and Bennett train these muscle groups with the same intensity as other body parts — a strategy that has proven effective for Ruffin who also won the “best poser” award when receiving his 2022 Arnold title.

Less Chest, More Back 

Coach Bennett wants Ruffin to scale down the chest training and focus more on sizing up his back. 

A little more back, a little less chest.

After calves and abs, Ruffin jumps straight into his push/pull routine. Due to the details provided in the video, it’s unclear if he starts with a Magnum seated row or pulldown exercise of his choice. The row variation is a favorite of Bennett’s and was one of the exercises included in Ruffin’s pull-only training sessions. However, the duo decided it’ll be used solely for the new push/pull regime to add size and thickness to the back.

The twice Arnold Classic Physique USA champ may superset either of these exercises with cable seated flyes to replace a chest press movement. 

Having your back just freaky as hell is never a bad thing.

It seems Ruffin supersets the second pull exercise with a cable Y-raise to hit the delts. This exercise seems to check all the boxes for a complete shoulder isolation movement that works all three deltoid heads (anterior, lateral, and posterior). It’s done by crossing the cables and lifting the arms up and back towards the head. 

The pull portion of the workout finishes with a straight-arm pulldown/pushdown using the cables and a rope attachment to emphasize contraction in the lat muscles. Since this push/pull routine is relatively low volume, Bennett says they may eventually add in some “metabolic pump work” to finish off these workouts.

[Related: Bodybuilder Nick Walker Incline Presses 200-Pound Dumbbells For Six Reps]


Just when you think you’ve seen it all, Ruffin performed inverted pull-ups using a Smith machine and bananas…that’s right, bananas! Bennett commended this kind of uniqueness differentiates their training from other elite competitors at the top of the sport:

We are doing things that no one else is doing. Everyone is out there lifting with barbells and dumbbells like a bunch of dumb-dumbs. We’re lifting with bananas, listening to the Frozen soundtrack, and nobody else is doing that!

Of course, those bananas are actually suspension training tools (D-handles) disguised as our favorite source of potassium! They’re not just for show, they may offer a more ergonomic grip angle for pull-ups and similar movements.

The only way to know for sure if the shift in Ruffin’s training to focus more on the back and arms and less on the chest will pay off on stage is when the Olympia judges offer their scores in December. Ruffin has consistently triumphed in every contest he’s competed in when Bumstead is absent — meaning all the non-Olympia contests — since 2019. We’ll see if 2022 is the year Ruffin claims the top prize in the sport and if “going things no one else is doing” was the difference-maker.

Featured image: @ruff_diesel on Instagram