Rich Piana Diet and Workout Plan

The Rich Piana diet was all about eating massive amounts of food. During the peak of his career, he weighed around 300 pounds and would eat around 8 meals per day.

Rich enjoyed restaurant take out after his training sessions and was also known to demolish a pint of ice cream every night. He proved that you need a hefty appetite to pack on muscle.

Who was Rich Piana?

Rich Piana was a bodybuilder, entrepreneur, and fitness influencer. He started 5% nutrition – a health supplement and apparel company.

Rich was also very popular on social media and had a successful YouTube channel. He was known for his intense workout style and honest approach to the fitness industry.


Height6′ 1″ (185.5 cm)
Weight275 – 285 lbs (124.7 kg – 129.3 kg)
BornSeptember 26, 1970
DiedAugust 25, 2017

Rich Piana Diet

Rich always stressed the importance of nutrition in bodybuilding. You gotta eat big to get big. In other words, stick to a consistent diet and prepare your meals ahead of time.

Rich would always get creative when he didn’t feel like cooking. Instead of making eggs for breakfast, sometimes he would just mix whey protein powder with his oatmeal. Here’s what a sample day of eating looked like for him:

Day of Eating

Meal 110 egg whites and 4 packets of oatmeal
Meal 22 scoops of whey protein powder, 2 scoops of mass protein powder and fruit
Meal 33 chicken breasts and 2 cups of brown rice
Meal 42 scoops of whey protein powder, 2 scoops of mass protein powder and fruit
Meal 510 ounces of lean steak and 2 cups of brown rice
Meal 6Fat free Greek yogurt mixed with 2 scoops of whey protein powder
Meal 72 burritos from a Mexican restaurant (dinner)
Meal 8Ben & Jerry’s chocolate fudge brownie ice cream

Remember that this is just one example day of eating. Rich would eat eggs, oatmeal, chicken, and rice everyday. But he also liked to switch up his meals so he didn’t get bored of eating.

After his night workout, Rich liked to pick up dinner from a restaurant. This would be Mexican, Italian, or any other type of food he was craving.

Rich Piana Workout

Credit: Rich Piana (via YouTube)

Chest Workout

This chest workout begins with incline movements before flat exercises. Rich was a big fan of the incline cable fly. This exercise adds more resistance to the entire motion – compared to dumbbells. It’s also less stressful on the shoulders and helps stretch out your muscles.

  • 1st exercise: Incline cable fly 5 x 12-20
  • 2nd exercise: Hammer Strength incline press 4 x 8-12
  • 3rd exercise: Pec deck flat fly 5 x 8-12
  • 4th exercise: Machine flat press 5 x 8-12
  • 5th exercise: Standing cable crossover 5 x 10-15

Back Workout

Below is an intense back workout that will build width and thickness. You will notice that Rich incorporated many different lat exercises in this particular workout. Growing the lats will make your upper body appear wider and enhance the shape of your physique.

  • 1st exercise: Wide grip lat pulldown 5 x 10-15
  • 2nd exercise: Smith machine row 5 x 8-12
  • 3rd exercise: Behind-the-neck lat pulldown 5 x 10-15
  • 4th exercise: Close grip seated cable row 5 x 8-12
  • 5th exercise: Wide grip assisted pull-up 5 x 10-15
  • 6th exercise: T-bar row 5 x 8-12
  • 7th exercise: Bent over cable row 5 x 10-15
  • 8th exercise: Bent over lat pulldown 5 x 10-15

Shoulder Workout

Rich had a monster physique, but he was known for his massive shoulders. In order to build true size in this area, it’s important to train all areas of the shoulder muscles. This makes the shoulders appear rounded from all angles. Rich would also include traps in this workout.

  • 1st exercise: EZ bar front raise 5 x 10-15
  • 2nd exercise: Seated smith machine overhead press 5 x 8-12
  • 3rd exercise: Dumbbell lateral raise 5 x 10-15
  • 4th exercise: Smith machine upright row 5 x 10-15
  • 5th exercise: Standing smith machine shrug 5 x 10-15
  • 6th exercise: Incline rear delt fly 5 x 10-15

Leg Workout

In this leg workout Rich begins with hamstrings exercises. Activating the hamstrings first will give a more stable feeling when it comes time for squats. And when you’re doing any type of heavy leg movement it’s important to feel stable. After hamstrings you can move on to quad exercises.

  • 1st exercise: Lying hamstring curl 5 x 10-15
  • 2nd exercise: Single leg hamstring curl 5 x 10-15
  • 3rd exercise: Barbell stiff leg deadlift 5 x 8-12
  • 4th exercise: Seated leg extension 5 x 10-15
  • 5th exercise: Leg press 5 x 8-12
  • 6th exercise: Hack squat machine 5 x 8-12

8-Hour Arm Workout

Rich was famous for his 8-hour arm workout. Yes, you read that correctly. He would occasionally put his body through an intense 8-hour lifting session. This workout would consist of 16 mini workouts. He would alternate between the two workouts below every 30 minutes, for 8 hours straight.

1st workout:

  • Skullcrusher 4 x 10
  • Barbell curl 4 x 10

2nd workout:

  • Single arm dumbbell extension 4 x 15
  • Dumbbell hammer curl 4 x 15

This workout was a great example behind the mindset of Rich Piana. He was willing to do whatever it took to accomplish his bodybuilding goals. Too many people make excuses and create reasons why they can’t go to the gym. But Rich would spend hours training and trying to improve his body.

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