I am now in week 27 of contest prep, with less than 12 days until my third and final show of this year. I have been contest dieting for over half a year. My bodyfat (based on a 7 point skin caliper test) was below 4% back in the first week of August and I have only gotten leaner since. Since my disappointing finish at WNBF Worlds of 2009, I have worked towards this goal of redeeming myself…the end of the Journey is now less than 2 weeks away. Having invested so much of myself both mentally and physically leading up to this contest season, it is extremely important for me to consider the transition into off-season coming off this extended contest season (28 weeks contest dieting and 3 shows spread over 8 weeks).
I wrote one of my previous articles (back in 2010) on the importance of off-season, which discusses the transition coming off a show:
I would like to highlight some aspects of my plan moving forward.
First off, after over half a year of caloric restriction, despite designed fluctuations of caloric intake during that period, I no doubt have temporarily slowed my metabolism. There is a crucial period of rebuilding that needs to occur after my last show and it needs to be done right OR ELSE I’LL JUST GET FAT! Without a structured nutritional plan to take place immediately after the show, undisciplined eating behavior would lead to rapid fat gain and severe water retention, both of which will have a very negative psychological impact. You’d be surprised how quickly a physique can turn to sh*t if you just start eating anything/everything after an extended period of structured, planned meals with specific macr0nutrient targets.
The plan in the 24 hrs after the show. After my last 2 shows I gave myself a 24 hour period to eat as much good food as I wanted. I did not eat anything that constituted cheating, but I did not count calories. I ate plenty of good food and allowed a lot of extra fat and carbohydrates from good sources: I ate flank steak, oats, chicken, broccoli, brown rice, greek yogurt, blueberries, granola, eggwhite/oatmeal/sweet potato waffles, rice cakes w/ pb, etc…all good stuff, just lots of it. I will follow similar a procedure after Worlds. Immediately following the show if I have an appetite i’ll have a shake with whey protein + oats to hold me over until I get back to the hotel. After my last shows the first thing I really craved was ice water with Lemon Lime Xtend mixed in. Once back at the hotel, i’ll have flank steak with oats and broccoli + red hot…on the side, some rice cakes with PB…this is honestly all I wanted after the other shows…I was quite content. I will be getting up early on Sunday morning to head back to VA no later than 5am. Meal 1 will be Greek Yogurt w/ blueberries, oats , whey and granola mixed in + coffee. Again this is what I had after my last shows and I was quite content. On the way home i’ll have 3 meals made (i’ll prep them in the hotel Saturday night before I go to bed)
1) chicken, broccoli, oats and/or brown rice, spicy brown mustard, hot sauce
2) flank steak, oats, red hot, broccoli
3) tuna, hard boiled eggs mixed with hummus and chopped broccoli
(i’ll munch on rice cakes w/ pb and or granola bars in between meals if i’m hungry)
When I get home (7+ hr drive) after I unpack and get situated i’ll make some eggwhite/oatmeal/sweet potato waffles and put PB on them.
After that i’ll go to the store and get anything I need for the week ahead (I actually will have most of my food made ahead of time and will just need to pull it out of the freezer)
That evening I will allow a meal of either healthy mexican wraps: chicken, guacamole, salsa, brown rice, back beans (in a bowl or in low carb wraps) or I may allow some California Kitchen pizza…we’ll see.
Monday Morning (November 14th) it’s back to business and time to move forward with a structured 7 meal plan and new workout program geared towards making some damn improvements in my physique:
Meal 1: greek yogurt, whey, oats, blueberries, granola (small amt)
Meal 2: muffins made from eggwhites, oats, pumpkin and prunes or …a healthy mini mexican style meatloaf
Meal 3: chicken, broccoli, brown rice or black beans, hummus or flax oil
Meal 4 (preworkout): grassfed beef, oats, broccoli
Meal 5 (post-workout): whey, oats + prunes (optional)
Meal 6: chicken, broccoli, sweet potato, almonds
Meal 7 (before bed): tuna mixed with hard boiled eggs + hummus
I will allow some leniency on the weekends…+ my girlfriend and I want to experiment with some healthy recipes
Additionally, until my metabolism is able to rebuild itself, i will be doing cardio as often as my schedule will allow to make sure I do not add bodyfat too fast as a result of the added calories.
If you’ve been following the training section of my blog, you know i’ve been training in very high volume for a long time now. I designed a new workout split geared towards enabling optimal growth and recovery. It’s a 4 day split (m/t/th/f) with 2 upper body days and 2 lower body days with different emphasis on each one and alternating exercises between week 1 and week 2
Lower body Day 1 (monday) is structured around squats and deadlifts (with alternating priority/emphasis each week) + supplementary posterior chain movements + calves
Upper Body Day 2 (tuesday) is push/pull, involving chest, shoulders and back
Lower Body Day 2 (thursday) is 2 compound leg movements (changes from week 1 to week 2) + 2 isolation (leg curls and extensions) + calves
Upper Body Day 2 (friday) is assisting chest, delt, tricep and bicep movements + forearms
I have the entire workout program written out in detail (exercises and all) and it will be available for purchase if anyone is interested. I’m looking forward to implementing it. It will be a reduction in training volume + an extra day of recovery…you better believe i’ll be ready to go balls to the wall Monday, November 14th (2 days after Worlds).
Aside from nutrition and workouts, I will be phasing out the majority of my supplements for at least 4 weeks (maybe more). I’m only keeping in the basics: whey, xtend, elastamine (joint supplement), vitamin D3, hyaluronic acid, multi-vitamin…everything else will be taken out for awhile (creatine, arginine, beta alanine, thermogenics, etc)
Lastly, I will be setting some strength goals to shoot for in multiple exercises…I will need something to work towards after the end of a 2 year journey, so that i’m not in limbo…starting that monday I need to walk into the gym with a purpose each day, just like I have every day leading up to that point…it’ll just be a new journey with new goals.
Well, that’s my plan for transitioning into off-season in a nutshell. We’ll see how it goes and i’ll make whatever modifications necessary. In the meantime, 11 days to have a strong finish for my 2011 contest season!!! WNBF Pro World Championships, November 12th NYC!!! Can’t F***ing wait!
Front Squats on York Squat Machine:2plx10,4plx10,6plx10,8plx10,10plx12,12plx6,12plx610plx12
Standing Calf Raises on Bear: 8plx12,10plx12,12plx10,10,10,10,10,10
Prone Leg Curl:190×8,8,8,8
Calf Raises on BM Leg Press:stack x16,16,16,16
Seated Calf Raises:4+platesx10,10,10,10
Barbell Pause Squats:315×6,6,6,6
Split Squats on smith machine:2plx12,4plx12,12
Hyperextension w/ Barbell across back:10,10,10
10 Hill Sprints: 10
Name, Age, Occupation, marital status
Eugene Chuvyrov, 35 years old, Software Consultant, Married
How did you get involved with fitness?
I was a chunky kid growing up, loved all the science subjects but hated physical education. I couldn’t even do a single push-up! My physical education teacher told my parents she would fail me if I couldn’t do 5 pull-ups by the end of the year, so my Dad took matters in his own hands. He bought me a pull-up bar and created the image in my head that only if I could do 15 pull-ups in the morning and 15 at night, I would be as strong as a Superman. So, I started pulling myself up, at first with my parents’ assistance, then slowly one, two, three and more at a time on my own. Shortly after building my physical education confidence with pull-ups (I was about 13 years old at that time), I saw a photo of a bodybuilder in a magazine, with a simple routine to follow. I was addicted to iron ever since.
Why is health & fitness important to you?
It’s a pretty selfish reason, but, in a nutshell, when I look good, I feel good. When I feel good, I believe everything is possible—that tough work project just needs a little extra push to finish, new business opportunities are just waiting around the corner, we are so close to world peace! Ok, I may be just kidding about that last point, but you get the idea…
There are other reasons that fitness is important to me, of course—I love being healthy and being able to enjoy a lot of physical activities. And, since health & fitness journey is never-ending, it provides a good test of will and determination, as well as continuous feelings of accomplishment.
Provide some background on your workout history, athletic or competitive endeavors, etc.
I started bodybuilding workouts when I was around 13 years old; before that, I played a bit of basketball for my school, as well as competed in what is a very popular sport in Europe called orienteering. Orienteering is similar to cross-country running, except the goal is to hit predefined points on a map in the fastest possible time. We ran in summer and cross-country skied in the winter. It was a lot of fun! At one point in my life (I think I was 14 years old or so), I trained for sports orienteering during the day, and then I would do bodybuilding workouts in my parents’ kitchen at night—I was so addicted to both I couldn’t decide which one I wanted more. I also kick-boxed for a little while after leaving orienteering.
What does your current workout regiment look like? Does this vary at all during different points of the year?
Kurt is my trainer, and I fully trust him with my bodybuilding routine. I hit the weights five times a week and do cardio five times a week also. I like variation in my routines, but I always stick with the same routine for at least 12 weeks. For the past couple of years, I have been prioritizing my leg training, since, admittedly, before I stepped on the bodybuilding stage, training body parts most visible at the beach was my priority numero uno.
What do you enjoy most about training?
I love the simplicity and singularity of purpose. A lot of people meditate or practice yoga to control the stresses of everyday life. I work out. When I am in the gym, my objective is to push the weight, every time just a little heavier or longer than the time before. Every workout presents an opportunity to improve, and how can this ever be boring when with every single workout you can better yourself?
What type of training do you enjoy the most (particular bodypart, type of workout, running, sprinting, swimming, etc.)
For the past couple of years, I fell in love with leg training. Leg training is something that I have neglected up until I took part in my first bodybuilding competition, so I have plenty of catching up to do. Noticing decent amount of progress in leg size from year to year is extremely rewarding. I also have a love-hate relationship with HIIT-style uphill sprints; they are tough, but they work well for me.
How has your approach to fitness/working out changed over the years?
Competing in natural bodybuilding events had a significant impact on my training. I perform much better when I have a goal I am trying to achieve, and picturing myself on a bodybuilding stage allows me to concentrate more on proper muscle activation, research different training approaches and try them out. For example, at the moment I am utilizing principles from Dorian Yates’ training methodology, and I find that it is working quite well. I am also much more open to different training and nutrition ideas now than I used to be before I started competing.
What has enabled your success as a competitor in your chosen activity?
Having a knowledgeable coach you trust is definitely at the top of the list. Then, I would have to say a strong vision of where you would like to be and a plan for getting there. Finally, the ability (or obsessiveness) to stick to your plan.
How has competing and/or training positively impacted your lifestyle?
One thing for sure—it has accelerated my results in the gym and outside of it tenfold. Also, my nutritional habits are so much better now than they used to be. Finally, it allowed me to meet a lot of people extremely committed to this sport, and I frequently look up to them for inspiration.
Give a detailed description of a typical day in your life, including when you get up, go to bed, work, perform every day activities, workout, etc.
I usually get up at seven in the morning, have some BCAAs and do cardio. Then, I cook breakfast for me and my wife (add healthy habits for my family members to the list of competition benefits), eat, pack my meals for the day and leave for work. I build software for a living, so all day long I sit on my butt staring at the computer screen, hopefully generating a couple of intelligent thoughts per hour. After work, I come home, have my pre-workout meal and go to the gym with my wife. After the gym, I either continue programming (I love what I do!), or I read. I don’t have cable television and don’t miss it at all. I go to bed shortly after midnight. I wish I could find a few extra hours in a day!!
What have been your greatest sources of motivation and inspiration?
Seeing natural bodybuilders get bigger and better year after year is most inspiring, proving that if you apply yourself consistently, the discipline does pay off. Kurt is probably the best example of this—I am amazed at the progress he continues to make every year. My own progress, albeit slow and painful at times, is also motivating. Finally, seeing bodybuilders in their fifties (like Lee Labrada, for example) look both muscular and defined also inspires me to succeed.
What is the best advice you could give to anyone regarding health & fitness and how to properly adopt a lifestyle that incorporates health & fitness?
Health and fitness lifestyle is a journey with very few shortcuts. Learn it, adopt it, and then learn to love it, because if you don’t, you will give it up. Also, surround yourself with people sharing the same interests, if possible; otherwise you may find yourself being an outcast among colleagues who don’t share your interest or passion for health and fitness.
What individual(s) has/have had the greatest impact on you throughout the course of your life and why?
My Dad introduced me to the world of strength training; all of the credit for my involvement with bodybuilding goes to him. My Mom is an extremely intelligent and positive individual; she is a retired teacher who continues to tutor students privately not for financial reasons, but because she is such a giving person. My wife Marianna is crazy to put up with me and the millions of silly ideas I generate, and I thank her daily for not letting me execute on most of them.
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement (fitness & competition related or otherwise)
I believe my greatest achievements are ahead of me—I have some professional goals that I am on my way to fulfilling, as well as a couple of bodybuilding goals that I hope to achieve one day. However, I am proud of passing a CPA exam, successfully defending my Masters’ thesis, which was a lot of work in unfamiliar territory, as well as writing a book on programming. I also still vividly remember winning a natural bodybuilding pro card in 2007 (thanks to Kurt’s guidance, of course), and that was a very significant achievement for me.
Looking ahead, what are some of your goals (either personal or fitness related) over the next 1,3,6,12 months?
I hope to stay a bit leaner this offseason than the last one—I gain weight very easily, so it takes careful planning and discipline for me to look like a bodybuilder when I am not getting ready for a competition. I also plan on launching a couple of software projects I have been working on, and I hope they will be somewhat successful. I am not sure when my next competition will be, but I would like to get stronger on some of the basic lifts, especially on the squats. I want to add a decent amount of muscle mass before I step on stage again. Most importantly, however, my goal is to stay healthy and happy, and working out is an integral part of my plan to be that.
One Arm Lateral Cable Raises: 50×12,60×12,60×10,60×10,50×12
HS Shoulder Press:2plx15,4plx12,12,12,10
Tricep Rope Pushdown:75×12,12,12,12
Cable Upright Rows: 160×12,12,12,12
Alt Front Cable Raises: 50×10,10,10
Close Grip Pull Downs:150×12,200×12,240×10,260×8,280×5,250×10,220×12
Bear Squats: 4plx10,8plx10,12plx10,12plx10,12plx10,12plx10
Standing Calf Raises on Bear: 10plx12,16plx10m12plx10,10,10,10
Abductor:190×12,12,12 superset w/ Adductor:250×12,12,12
HS Kneeling Leg Curl:105×8,8,8,8
superset w/ HS Horizontal Calf Raise:10plx10,10,10,10
HS Front Lat Pull Down:6plx8,7,7,6
superset w/ Seated Calf Raises:3plx15,4plx10,4plx10
Steps-ups: 3 sets
Glute/Ham Raises: 10,10,10
Precor Lat Pull Down:220×10,8,6
Three supplements that I would argue are almost beneficial to anyone are Acetyl-L-Carnitine (aka ALCAR), Alpha-Lipoic Acid and Coenzyme Q10. I categorize these supplements as metabolic optimizers.
Acetyl-L-Carnitine acts as an antioxidant and helps glucose and fatty acid metabolism with increased mitochondrial activity (enabling you to derive more energy from food and making you more likely to burn fat…less likely to store it). It also may actually help cognitive function.
Acetyl-L-Carntine is available in two forms from Primaforce, either capsulated (Alcalean) or powder (ALCAR)…both are the same product and both are available for sale at the Weight Club.
CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant that help the body convert food into energy. As an anti-oxidant, CoQ10 helps combat free radicals, protecting the body from cell damage. CoQ10 is also believed to improve cardiovascular health, help lower blood pressure, stabilize blood sugar, and help lower cholesterol.
Primaforce carries Idebenone, which is a fat-soluble form of CoQ10…this product is also sold at the Weight Club.
Alpha Lipoic Acid
Alpha Lipoic Acid is another anti-oxidant that helps specifically with glucose metabolism by upregulating the GLUT4 receptor in the cell. This receptor is responsible for glycogen uptake. By upregulating GLUT4 you can improve insulin sensitity, making your body more likely to utilize carbohydrates, so that glycogen gets shuttled into the muscles and burned for energy rather than stored in fat cells.
Insopro R is a product made by Primaforce that has 100mg R-ALA per capsule…Insopro R can be found for sale at the Weight Club.
Cable Flys:100×16,12,12 drop 100×12>80×7>60×12
Alt D-Bell Curls:65′sx7,6 50′sx12
Close Grip Chest Press:175×16,220×10,250×4,220×5,190×15
Lying Cable Curls: 100×12,110×6,120×4,100×10
Tricep Rope Pushdown:75×15,12,10,12
Pec Deck:250×10,7 drop:250×6>190×4>130×6
Push-ups on Bosu w/ feet elevated:20,16,14
WG Lat Pull Down:160×12,200×12,240×12,260×10,260×10,240×12
Pronated Seated Cable Row: 220×12,250×10,260×10,240×12
Underhand Pull-ups: 3 sets
HS Hi Row:6plx12,12,12,12
Precor Lat Pull Down: 220×10,8,7 190×9
Precor Rear Delt:175×10,10,10,10
HS Seated Shrugs: 8plx10,10,10,10
Stiff Arm Lat Pull: 100×10,10,10
23 minute posing session
Unilateral Leg Press:2plx12,4plx12,6plx12,8plx6,6plx12
Standing Calf Raises on Bear: 8pl12,10plx12,12plx10,12plx10,12plx10
Front Squats on York Squat Machine:4plx10,6plx10,8plx10,10plx10,12plx6,12plx6
Standing Calf Raises on Bear: 12plx8,12plx8,12plx8,10plx12,10plx12,10plx12
Prone Leg Curl:190×8,7,6 160×10
Leg Ext: 250×16,12,12,10
Calf Raises on Precor Leg Press Machine:415 x10,10,10,10
Barbell Pauses Squats:315×5,5,5
Seated Calf Raises: 4plx10,10,10,10
Hyperextension w/ Barbell across back: 10,10,10
10 Hill Sprints
Seated Lateral D-Bell Raises:25′sx15,30′sx15,40′sx15,45′sx10,45′sx10 drop:40′sx15>30′sx10>20′sx10>10′sx20
EZ Bar Curls:110×12,10,8
Skull Crushers: 110×12,10,8
SM Mil Press:135×10,185×10,235×8,235×8 drop:235×6>185×6>135×12
Tricep Rope Pushdown:75×12,75×12,75×10 drop:75×10>60×10>45×10>30×12
Cable Upright Rows: 160×12,12,12
Precor Preacher Curl Machine:145×6,6,6
Front D-Bell Raises:40′sx8,8,8
20 minute posing session
Seated Cable Row: 160×12,220×12,250×12,260×12,270×10
HS Kneeling Leg Curl:70×12,105×8,115×6,6
HS Horizontal Calf Raise:8plx12,10plx10,10,10
Seated Calf Raises:3plx16,4plx10,10,10,10
Barbell Rows: 225×12,12,12,12
Standing Calf Raises on Bear:10plx10,10,10,10
Wide Grip Pronated Pull-ups:10,10,10,10
Walking Lunges: 60′s x 3 sets
Hill Sprints: 10
Incline D-Bell Press: 50′sx15,75′sx12,100′sx12,100′sx9,100′sx7, 80′sx11, 60′sx16, 40′sx30
Tricep Pushdown w. circular attachment: 100×12,100×10,100×8,80×12,60×20
Hammer Cable Curls:160×10,180×8,200×6,160×10
Atl D-Bell Curls:60′sx7,60′sx6,45′sx10
Leg Raises on Incline:16,16,16
So if you’ve been paying attention to my blog, I recently am more concerned with metabolic acidosis, see the following post to catch:
Over the last several days I have made modifications to my diet in an effort to add more alkalizing foods. During the latter stage of contest prep, I am limited to what I can add…I can substitute things of equal caloric value (replace an acidic fat source like natural peanut butter with an alkaline fat source like raw almond butter), but I cannot add calories (adding citrus fruits to meals for their alkalizing effect…I will be able to do this in a few weeks).
In my initial post I provided a link to Derek Charlebois’ article…I want to give him credit here for providing some helpful tips.
One easy way he pointed out to balance the pH is to incorporate unpasteurized organic apple cider vinegar…no added calories!!!
I immediately began researching this product and quickly realized there are numerous health benefits to regular ingestion of ACV aside from the alkalizing effect (which was my interest)
-good for skin, reduces acne
-immune function (malic acid-anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti fungal)
-strengthen bones and teeth (calcium)
-helps with conditions such as dermatitus, gout and arthritus
-helps break down fat (making fat more useable and less likely to be stored), improves metabolism
-helps lower high blood pressure (pectin)
-helps stabilize blood glucose levels (acetic acid: slows digestion of starch)
-helps with detoxification
If it does half of these things, there’s no reason everyone shouldn’t be using it! a bottle with around 64 servings is $3.79!
Needless to say, I picked some up today and began using it tonight…2 tablespoons diluted with water twice a day (don’t drink it straight or you’ll burn your throat and ruin your teeth! 1st thing in the morning + mid-day
Additionally, i’ll be adding a couple grams of glutamine to meals for the alkalizing effect:
Thanks for the help Derek!
Precor Lat Pull Down: 160×12,220×12,250×6,250×6,220×10
One Arm D-Bell Row: 170×10,10,10
Medium Grip Pull Downs: 250×10,260×10,270×8,240×12
Precor Rear Delt: 190×12,205×8,205×7,175×12
HS Seated Shrugs: 8plx16,10plx8,8plx12,6plx10
HS DY Row: 6plx12,12,12,12
WG Pronated Pull-ups:8,7,7
Isolated T-Bar Rows (w/ chest pad): 3plx8,3plx6,2plx12
22 minute posing session
Yesterday began week 25 of contest prep. Sunday morning Jenn (my girlfriend) and I got up at 4:30am and headed out the door at 5am for a sunrise hike. We hiked Dragon’s Tooth:
We hit the trailhead by 5:45am and hiked up with flashlights in the dark so we could watch the sunrise from about 4000 ft. Dragon’s tooth is a decent workout…figured this would be a more enjoyable way to do cardio on Sunday morning instead of the usual treadmill/elliptical combo. It’s 2.3 miles up (4.6 round trip) and you gain about 1750 feet of elevation…I did the hike on zero carbs….just had whey isolate + a couple servings of Novem on the way to the trailhead. We took our breakfast with us + a thermos of coffee and enjoyed both at the top of the mountain while we froze our asses off (45 degrees + wind) after sweating on the way up…chicken, broccoli and oats for breakfast!
Here are some pics:
Weighed in at 198 lbs this morning…weight is holding nicely and my energy is still quite good considering i’m approaching the end of my prep. I’m also happy with my strength, considering how long my bodyfat has been pretty low. Today was leg day:
Leg Press: 2plx20,4plx20,6plx20,8plx20,10plx20,12plx20,14plx12
Standing Calf Raises on Bear:6plx12,8plx12,10plx12,12plx10, 12plx10,12plx10,12plx10,
Front Squats on York Squat Machine:4plx10,8plx10,10plx10,12plx6,12plx6
superset w/ more Standing Calf raises on Bear: 12plx10,12plx10,12plx10,12plx10,12plx10,
Prone Leg Curl:190×8,8,6,6
Barbell Pause Squats: 315×6,6,6,6
Seated Calf Raises: 3+plates x 16, 4+plates x 10,10,10
Hyperextension w/ Barbell across back:10,10,10
Hill Sprints: 10
initially my leg felt a little tired from yesterday’s hike, but the more i did, the better they felt and I had a great workout!
took a few pics of the wheels after my workout
By: Kurt Weidner
A troubling observation I have made over the years is the inability of most to possess what I would call long term vision. I am constantly approached or contacted by youngsters seeking improved size, strength or speed. They usually bring great initial enthusiasm, which is coupled with an expectation for instant results. When the realization sets in that it will take not only lifestyle changes that call for great discipline on a daily basis, but that the approach must be executed over a long period of time to yield the wanted results, all of a sudden the enthusiasm dwindles.
My father started me doing push-ups and sit-ups when I was eight years old. As a youngster I was very driven to excel, whether on the athletic field or in the classroom. I recognized the significance of paying my dues. I knew that I wanted to be bigger, stronger and faster and I will was willing to work to make it happen. I also realized that I was not going to see results from day to day or week to week…I put my time in anyway, knowing down the road I would be able to cash in on my hardwork.
I was not a naturally big guy. In high school I was somewhat strong with more of a wiry athletic build. My legs were long and thin. I punished them with insane workouts. I was willing to implement any training method to make them bigger and stronger…numerous exercises and sets, drop sets, supersets, giant sets, plyometrics, sprints, etc. Week after week, month after month, year after year I would continually torture my legs, insisting that they grow. I never stopped to think about how long it would take for them to gain the size and strength I wanted…I just focused on doing what needed to be done.
The quest for bigger legs along with improved overall musculature never ceased. I am now 35 years old and have competed as a professional bodybuilder for several years. While I will never be satisfied (a sign of complacency), I can look at my physique now and see the fruits of my labor over many, many years. I also recognize the sacrifices made over all of those years along with an unwavering attitude and commitment towards attaining my goals.
Each little decision made every day to push myself harder on each set, to only eat clean, healthy foods, to get enough sleep and to consistently take the extra measures is an investment in my body and my future. Every day is a new investment…it’s the next workout, the next set, the next meal…it doesn’t stop…it’s like clockwork. You keep investing every day and you don’t think about the size of the return or when you’ll see it. This type of structured behavior requires faith or you won’t stay the path. The routine has to be part of your belief system. You can never question the value of what must be done every day…you just do it without thought or hesitation. It has to be important enough to you that you not only keep doing it, but that you would actually feel incomplete without the structured routine. It becomes part of who you are…it defines you.
With this lifestyle many who fail to understand might ask you, “Don’t you ever get tired of working out or eating healthy?” NO!!! I DON’T and I NEVER WILL!!! This would be like me asking someone with religious devotion, “Don’t you ever get tired of believing in god?” They would think I’m an idiot.
If you take a minute to think about the idea of saving and investing, how much money would you need to save and invest on a daily/weekly/monthly basis to significantly increase your net worth and how long would it take you? If you understand money, then you know it wouldn’t happen overnight. Investing time, energy and resources into your body is no different…it takes a long time to see results, but with persistence and patience they’ll be there. Ultimately, you need to be realistic. Success in any endeavor never comes quickly, nor should it. The more you’re willing to invest yourself and the longer the period of time over which you’re willing to do so, the greater the reward.
Lastly, there is not a real starting or ending point. As a person I have continued to evolve over the course of my life to become who I am now. As I strive forward to meet new goals, I am constantly raising the bar for myself and setting loftier goals. At 35 years old I can look back to see how my physique has changed since I was a teenager as a result of my investment in myself…for me this serves as motivation to work even harder, so that looking ahead to 40 years old I can redefine my best.
The next time you think about a goal you’d like to attain or achieve, ask yourself the important questions: How bad do I want it and what am I willing to do to make it happen?
Below is a picture of me when I was 19 years old after several years of very rigorous training.
This is a picture of my legs about 14 years later
did 30 min cardio at the house, followed by some abdominal work
followed by more abdominal work at gym: 3 sets cable crunches + 3 sets incline sit-ups
One Arm Lateral Cable Raises: 50×15,60×12,70×8,60×12,50×16,40×20
HS Shoulder Press: 2plx15,4plx15,6plx4,6plx4,4plx16,2plx30
Alt D-Bell Curls: 65′sx6,6,5
Cable Upright Rows: 160×12,12,12,12
Reverse Pushdown: 60×16,12,10
Alt Front Cable Raises: 50×12,12,12
Precor Preacher Curl: 145×8,145×6,130×10
22 min posing session
following the workout I went home and did close to 2 hrs yard work (digging up ground with a pick ax)
HS Hi Row: 4plx12,6plx12,8plx10,8plx8,8plx8,6plx16
Standing Calf Raises on Bear:10plx10,10,10,10
Neutral Grip Pull-ups:10,10,10,10
HS Kneeling Leg Curl:105×8,8,8,8
HS Horizontal Calf Raises: 10plx8,8,8,8
Underhand Pull Downs:220×12,10,10,10
Sm Split Squats:2plx12,4plx10,10
10 Hill Sprints
Tomorrow concludes week 24 of contest prep. Coming off show number #2 this past week I was sore as hell all week…felt like I got hit by a truck! Had great workouts and pushed hard all week, nonetheless. Planning on doing a sunrise hike in the morning prior to my shoulder & arm workout…will eat my pre-workout meal on the top of a mountain…gotta love the fall! Can’t miss out on the beautiful colors and scenery in Southwest VA just because i’m contest dieting.
Here’s an excellent article written by Derek Charlebois…a very informative look at an element of nutrition many likely overlook or are completely unaware of:
Here’s a helpful list:
Incline BB Press: 135×12,185×10,235×7,235×5 drop:235×5>185×5>135×10
Incline D-Bell Flys: 60′sx16,75′sx12,80′sx10,80′sx7,65′sx14
HS Incline: 6plx7,6plx5 drop:6plx5>4plx5>2plx10
Cable Curls: stack x12,10 drop:stack x10>3/4 stackx5,1/2 stack x10
Tricep Rope Pushdown:75×20,90×10,100×6 drop:75×12>50×12>30×20
Cable Flys: 100×20,100×10 drop: 100×10>80×6>60×10>40×20
Hammer Curls: 50′sx6,6,6
Push-ups w/ feet elevated: 30,20
Prone Leg Curl: 175×12,190×6,175×8,175×7
Leg Extension: 250×15,12,8,8
Calf Raises on Precor Leg Press: 425×10,10,10,10
Barbell Pause Squats: 315×6,6,6
Hack Squats: 6plx12,8plx10,8plx10
Seated Calf Raises: 4plx12,12,12,12
Hyperextensions w/ Barbell across back: 10,10,10
10 Hill Sprints
Today was one of those days when I knew I would need to draw heavily on mental strength to compensate for physical exhaustion. Saturday, we departed from Indiana immediately after the show and drove 7.5 hrs back to VA. I got 5 hrs of sleep Saturday night and mowed my lawn Sunday morning ( 2 hrs cardio). I was completely mentally and physically exhausted yesterday. One day of rest wasn’t quite enough to bring me back up to par. Today was leg day and I knew I had to GET IT DONE!!! Anything less than a phenomenal workout is unnacceptable. Worlds is less than 5 weeks away and I need to finish this season strong! I was not allowed to be tired until my workout was over! Mental Fortitude!!! Find a way to make it happen…I did! Had a great workout and moved some good weight. I left feeling proud…that’s always the goal! Tonight I will go to bed early and catch up on sleep/rest. I am beyond excited far Worlds!!!
Vaughan Twigger’s Routine:
Kurt Weidner’s Routine:
If you haven’t been keeping up with Natural Bodybuilding and the WNBF, let me inform you that there’s a new force to be reckoned with…His name is Vaughan Twigger. The 28 year British phenom, who works as a personal trainer in Blacksburg, VA at the Weight Club is tearing up the ranks this year. 3 weeks ago Vaughan won his class at the WNBF Universe, defeating former World Champ Jim Cordova. Yesterday, October 8th, Vaughan was crowned as the 2011 WNBF Pro Mid-America Champ. It was a very competitive show with 9 pro men all in one class. The pro men’s class was onstage around 40 minutes as the judges worked them hard making comparison after comparison. In the end Vaughan was victorious taking the class. Vaughan is quickly becoming a widely recognized name in Natural Bodybuilding and he is carrying a ton of momentum going into the WNBF World Championships in 5 weeks. At only 28 years old, he has an absolute ton of potential.
I am fortunate to be able to call Vaughan my workout partner and friend. I am beyond proud of what he has already accomplished this year with 2 pro victories in some very tough classes. Congrats Vaughan!