Franco Columbu [Bodybuilder Profile]

franco columbu bodybuilder

Franco Columbu was born in October of 1941 in Ollolai, Sardinia. He is a former bodybuilder and actor who has competed in several bodybuilding competitions. Columbu has also starred in television and film. In 1977, he won the World’s Strongest Man competition with his friend and training partner, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

HeightWeightAgeBirth Place
5 Foot 5 Inches200 PoundsAugust 7th, 1941Sardinia, Italy
Crossfit Profile

Columbu is still involved in the fitness industry to this day. Here is a look at Franco Columbu’s life and career as a bodybuilder and actor.

Who is Franco Columbu

Franco Columbu is an Italian bodybuilder, actor, and former Mr. Olympia. Columbu began his career as a powerlifter before transitioning to bodybuilding in the early 1970s. He quickly became one of the sport’s biggest stars, winning the Mr. Olympia title in 1976 and 1981. 

franco columbu arnold

Columbu has also appeared in several films, including “The Strongest Man in the World” and “Predator 2”. In addition to his athletic and acting careers, Columbu is a certified chiropractor and has written several books on fitness and health.

Check out some of our other Bodybuilder Profiles:

Despite his many accomplishments, Columbu is perhaps best known for his longtime friendship with Arnold Schwarzenegger. The two men met while competing in bodybuilding contests and have remained close. 

They have appeared in numerous movies, television shows, and commercials. Franco Columbu is a true Renaissance man who has succeeded in various endeavors.

What Does Franco Columbu Weigh

Franco Columbu is an Italian actor, bodybuilder, and former powerlifter. He was born in 1941 and currently weighs around 200 pounds.

How Tall is Franco Columbu?

Franco Columbu is a world-renowned bodybuilder and actor. He stands 5’5″ tall. Despite his shorter stature, Columbu has achieved great success in bodybuilding, winning the Mr. Olympia title twice. He has also starred in numerous films and television shows.

franco columbu dead

Columbu’s height has never been a hindrance to his success. He proves that even shorter individuals can achieve great things if they set their minds.

How Old Is Franco Columbu

Franco Columbu was born on August 7, 1941. That makes him 78 years old. Despite his age, Columbu is still in great shape and regularly works out. He has even competed in a few bodybuilding competitions in recent years. Columbu is a living testament to staying active and caring for your body.

What is Franco Columbu Nationality

Franco Columbu is an Italian actor, bodybuilder, and fitness coach. He was born in Sardinia, Italy, on August 7, 1941.

Franco Columbu: personal life and wife

Frank Columbu was a happily married man who enjoyed spending time with his beautiful wife, Deborah Columbu. The couple welcomed a daughter named Maria Columbu and enjoyed sharing photos of their family on social media platforms. While Frank didn’t share much information about his personal life, it is clear that he cherished his loved ones dearly.

He also had a romantic involvement with Anita Sanangelo, a different chiropractor. He then traveled to Germany for a bodybuilding contest in 1965, where he eventually ran into Arnold Schwarzenegger. They subsequently become lifelong friends. In addition, he became the godfather of Christina, Schwarzenegger’s daughter, during his marriage to Maria Shriver in 1986.

Is Franco Columbu Married

Yes, Franco Columbu is married. He was married to his wife, Deborah, for over 30 years.

Franco Columbu Fitness Modeling Career/Bodybuilding Career 

Franco Columbu is a world-renowned bodybuilder and fitness model. He has competed in and won numerous bodybuilding championships, including the Mr. Olympia title. Columbu impressive physique has also landed him modeling contracts with some of the world’s top fashion brands.

franco columbu height

Despite being quite successful in bodybuilding, Columbu has also pursued other endeavors. He is a successful actor and has appeared in numerous films and TV shows. Columbu is also a successful businessman, owning several restaurants and health clubs throughout Italy.

Franco Columbu is one of the most accomplished bodybuilders in history. His success in fitness modeling and bodybuilding worlds is a testament to his incredible talent and work ethic. Columbu is an inspiration to aspiring bodybuilders and fitness models everywhere.

What Is Franco Columbu Workout Routine

Franco Columbu’s workout routine breaks down like this:

Day 1 – Chest and shoulders in the AM, arms in the PM

Day 2 – Back in the AM, legs in the PM

Day 3 – Chest and shoulders

Day 4 – Arms

Day 5 – Legs in the AM, back in the PM

Day 6 – Chest and shoulders

Day 7 – REST

Day 8 – Arms in the AM, legs in the PM

Day 9 – Back

Day 10 – Chest and shoulders in the AM, arms in the PM

Day 11 – Back in the AM, legs in the PM

Day 12 – Chest and shoulders

Day 13 – Arms

Day 14 – Rest

Abdominals were trained in the morning during days 3, 5, 6, 9, 11, and 12, and in the PM on day 1.


Columbu diet was relatively simple and consisted of fresh fruits, vegetables, and protein to support his weightlifting. Here is a breakdown of what he typically ate for each meal.


Columbu started each day with a filling but nutritious breakfast. His protein-rich meal would typically consist of four eggs cooked differently and homemade yogurt and granola cereal. To round out his meal, Columbu would add some fresh fruit or drink a glass of orange juice.

Columbu understood how crucial it was to stay hydrated before and after exercising. So, he would drink a glass of water with breakfast every morning to get a head start on his daily hydration.

franco columbu movies

Don’t forget to take your vitamins and minerals! It’s hard to say which specific vitamins Columbu took, but we recommend taking a multivitamin each morning. Taking just one a day can make a big difference in your training and overall life.


In addition to a cooked vegetable and a sizable portion of protein, Columbu generally ate a sizable vegetable salad with oil and vinegar for lunch. His preferred protein sources were liver, lamb, cattle, chicken, and fish. He frequently paired his meals with wine or mineral water.


When you work out intensely like the Sardinian Strongman, you need to have a mid-afternoon snack to keep you going until dinner. Columbu usually had a cheese plate with imported cheeses and fresh fruit or nuts. He would also eat tuna fish as part of his afternoon snack to get some additional protein. This kept him fueled until his evening workout.


At dinnertime, Columbu would typically eat a large salad, some cooked veggies, and a protein like chicken or fish. He would often drink mineral water or wine with his meal.


Columbu’s last meal of the day was usually a small bowl of yogurt. He liked yogurt because it was good for digestion and helped him end his day on a healthy note.

Franco Columbu: Net Worth and Social Media Profiles

Regarding your salary, you have undoubtedly made a sizable sum from your profession. He had already made a name for himself as a bodybuilder, actor, and World’s Strongest Man competitor. Therefore, at the time of his passing in 2019, he had a net worth of $10 million.

There is an Instagram account with 236,000 followers that appears to be verified and personal. This account, called @francocolumbu, does not seem to have any presence on other social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.


Do not pay attention to any fad diet, such as low carb or food combination. Arnold and I sometimes only eat egg yolks to increase our strength and testosterone. 

Egg Cleanses, according to Franco, are the best source of protein and are essential for anyone following a workout regimen

. He thinks that the dietary recommendations for eggs are inaccurate. He says that lecithin, which is present in egg yolks, aids in the removal of cholesterol from other foods.

In a study of 100 people, those who ate eggs had lower cholesterol levels than those who only drank milk or who drank milk and ate eggs. This suggests that eggs may benefit heart health, even when consumed alongside dairy products.

Franco’s diet has changed, and he now consumes less protein than he did previously. His daily intake has increased to about 120g. He still suggests high-quality protein sources, including eggs, fish, dairy, and meat, despite changing his diet (including poultry and pork). Franco still wants what’s best for other people no matter how his diet has changed.

Franco’s Muscle Building Diet

To complement the training program he designed for Sly in preparation for Rambo II; Franco also put together a meal plan. The aim was to provide the body with all the essential nutrients and macros needed for building muscle and losing fat. 

franco columbu net worth

The ingredients for the granola will have been carefully selected, and all of the food will come from whole food sources. The wine may not be the most popular choice today, but it worked for Franco.


  • 3 eggs
  • 1 piece fruit
  • Large glass of orange juice
  • Yogurt with milk and granola cereal
  • Mineral water with a vitamin and mineral supplement


  • Fresh vegetable with oil and vinegar dressing
  • Cooked vegetable
  • Protein, fish, chicken, lamb or liver
  • Wine or mineral water


  • Cheese and fresh fruit
  • Dinner
  • Same as lunch


  • Yogurt

Frequently Asked Questions

What happened to Franco Columbu The bodybuilder?

Franco Columbu, a close friend of Arnold Schwarzenegger who appeared in films such as The Terminator and Conan the Barbarian, passed away at age 78. Columbu was not only an actor but also a well-known bodybuilder and boxer. Many will remember him for his impressive career and close friendship with Schwarzenegger.

The Italian star died Friday after drowning in his home country of Sardinia, The Associated Press reported.

He lived in Los Angeles but was vacationing in Sardinia when he got sick while swimming. 
He died at a hospital in Olbia.

How much could Franco Columbu bench press?

After winning the 1981 Mr. Olympia competition, Columbu made a comeback and gave up competing. His strength records included a clean and jerk of 400 pounds (181 kg), a bench press of 525 pounds (238 kg), a squat of 655 pounds (297 kg), and a deadlift of 750 pounds (340 kg). Columbu victory in 1981, Mr. Olympia, was a great accomplishment. When he retired, he held records for the clean and jerk, bench press, squat, and deadlift.

Is Franco Columbu still alive?

No. The Italian celebrity drowned in his native Sardinia on Friday and died as a result.

Did Franco Columbu ever win Mr. Olympia?

After dislocating his left knee while competing in the World’s Strongest Man Competition in 1977, Mr. Columbu took a vacation from the competition and won the Mr. Olympia title in 1976 and 1981.

Who was stronger, Arnold or Franco?

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu were both incredibly strong bodybuilders. They competed against each other, and both achieved great success.

Franco was more muscular than Arnold. He had a more finely-tuned physique and was known for his impressive strength. He could perform one-handed pull-ups with 100kg of weight attached, which is an incredible feat. Arnold was no slouch, but Franco was undoubtedly the stronger of the two.

When it comes to overall strength, though, Arnold has the edge. He could bench press 520lbs (235kg) and squat 700lbs (318kg). Franco could only manage 455lbs (206kg) on the bench and 605lbs (274kg) in the squat. So while Franco may have been stronger in terms of muscle, Arnold was stronger in raw power.

Who is the strongest Mr. Olympia?

Ronnie Coleman is a legendary figure in the world of bodybuilding. He won the Mr. Olympia title eight times, an incredible feat while weighing in at an impressive 300 pounds. Coleman’s success has inspired many aspiring bodybuilders to pursue their dreams.

Who is the oldest Mr. Olympia?

In 2018, Rhoden became the new Mr. Olympia after Phil Heath. He is the oldest bodybuilder to have won the title, at 43.

Who has won the most Mr. Universe titles?

Ronnie Coleman and Lee Haney have eight Mr. Olympia wins, the most in history. They both won consecutively for eight years straight. Phil Heath falls behind them with seven wins, but he also won consecutively for seven years.


Franco Columbu was an incredibly strong and successful bodybuilder. He won Mr. Olympia in 1976 and 1981 and was widely considered one of the world’s strongest men. It was well known that he was good friends with Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the two were frequently held up as role models.

Sadly, Columbu passed away in 2019 after drowning while swimming in his native Sardinia. He was a true icon of the sport and will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Matt Mahony
Latest posts by Matt Mahony (see all)

Matt Mahony

Matt Mahony has been a personal trainer for over a decade, helping people from all walks of life get in shape and stay healthy. He is originally from Portland, ME but now resides in Colorado. A self-proclaimed "gym rat," Matt loves nothing more than spending time in the weight room or on the basketball court.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x