- 1st Place Novice Division 2010 NGA Steel Valley Classic
- 5th Place Open Light-Heavyweight 2009 NABBA Canton Open Bodybuilding Championships
What is your background and how did you get started in bodybuilding?
I have played competitive sports all throughout my life. I tended to excel in contact sports and began to lift weights in order to give myself an advantage of being bigger and stronger than my competitors. As I entered college I was no longer playing sports other than intramurals. I was constantly working out and needed to find a new outlet to all my competitive nature to be achieved.
I never really knew about natural bodybuilding and figured that all those bodybuilders I would see were far bigger than me and I wouldn’t stand a chance on stage next to them. I found tested shows online and decided to give one a shot. It was a new way for me to compete and all the results were reliant on the hard work I put in. I have loved the sport ever since. It has given me a positive way to channel aggression into something productive.
Why do you love bodybuilding?
I love being able to watch myself change and witness improvements. Competing is the most challenging and rewarding thing I have ever done in my life. A lot of people don’t really understand it unless they are directly affected by someone who is competing. It’s a 24/7 lifestyle that it takes to be at your best. Bodybuilding has given me a reason to remain healthy and constantly challenge myself mentally and physically to achieve far greater successes that I had originally thought imaginable.
I found my passion for health and fitness and truly enjoy it. Competing has allowed me to see what can happen when I work really hard and put all my efforts into one thing. It takes plenty of sacrifices along the way but in the end they all seem to be far worth it. People see bodybuilders today in front of them, but do not see all the hard work, meals, training sessions, cardio, and sacrifices. It takes a ton of work to progress and to me it is worth my best efforts.
What is your training philosophy?
I like to train heavy and hard on and off season. During the dieting process obviously more caution is taken due to the lower calorie intake and drop in weight. Sometimes more machine movements become necessary when depleted, but I prefer compound movements for growth. I am an advocate of different styles of training such as: drop sets, supersets, negatives, etc.
What's a good workout routine that has given you results?
- Monday - Back
- Tuesday - Chest
- Wednesday - Legs
- Thursday - Shoulders
- Friday - Arms
- Saturday - Calves, Abs and Cardio
- Sunday - OFF
Rep ranges vary with all workouts depending on the goal. Generally more reps on legs than other body parts.
|Close Grip Bent Over Row||4-5|
|Close Grip Pull Down||3|
|Incline Bench Press||4-5|
|Dumbbell Bench Press||4|
|Decline Dumbbell Flys||3|
|Warm Up Stretch|
|Stiff Leg Deadlift||4|
|Barbell Shoulder Press||4|
|Dumbbell Side Laterals||3|
|Standing Dumbbell Front Raise||3|
|Bent Over Reverse Flye|
|Standing Barbell Curl||4|
|Incline Dumbbell Curl||4|
|Close Grip Skullcrusher||4|
|Cable Tricep Extension||4|
|Dumbbell Tricep Kickback||3|
|Calves and Abs|
|4 Calf Exercises - High Reps|
If you have to pick only 3 exercises, what would they be and why?
- Deadlift - It’s my favorite lift and strengthens my lower back.
- Incline Press - Has sparked the most chest growth.
- Squats - The best leg exercise hands down.
What’s the best training tip you could give to others?
Train heavy and hard but also smart. Focus on the muscle being worked not the weight being moved.
What is your philosophy on nutrition?
Give us a typical day in your off season diet:
Whole eggs, chicken, fish, lean ground beef, steak, natural peanut butter, almonds, oatmeal, brown rice, sweet potatoes, whole grain pasta, wheat bread, cereal, skim milk, anything else I want that is usually healthy.
Give us a typical day in your diet (contest prep):
I clean those meals up, but I don’t usually get too fat in the off season. In season reduce sodium levels as well.
What are your favorite meals and foods?
Grilled chicken, sweet potato, BBQ sauce.
Favorite cheat food?
Lean ground beef cheeseburger, or chipotle.
What’s the best nutrition tip you could give to others?
Unless the food going into you is beneficial in anyway, don’t eat it.
What supplements do you use that give you great results? How do you use them?
- Whey Protein Isolate - Easy meal replacement digests quickly sometimes mix with oatmeal.
- Casein Protein - Slow digesting protein at night time.
- Multivitamins and fish oils - Essential.
What brands do you think are offering the best products at the moment?
There are so many different supplement brands out with plenty of new products. I usually stick with the tried and true.
What do you think is a good off season muscle building stack?
Weight gainer shakes, nutrition is far more important than supplementation. I also like ZMA, BCAAs, sometimes creatine, and whey protein isolate. But a high caloric and clean diet seems to be the best bet.
What do you think is a good pre-contest/fat loss stack?
A strict diet and cardio, nothing beats it.
What are the 3 best tips you'd give to someone thinking about competing in natural bodybuilding?
- Commit yourself and do not quit or give up, throughout the diet there will be plenty of times where you want to cheat or quit and you need to push through it.
- Don’t get discouraged by others using performance enhancing drugs and becoming larger or stronger than you. Deep down you know that your gains have been hard earned.
- Bodybuilding is far more mental than physical. In order to achieve what you set out to do you need to commit yourself mentally first.
What is your best advice for looking your best on competition day?
Keep track of everything you’re doing and see how your body responds to certain training and food.
How do you stay motivated? What advice would you give to someone who's having trouble staying on track?
I love to read motivational articles and books as well as watch videos. Someone who can’t stay on track needs to decide if it’s really what they want to do first. It is a lot of hard work to compete and for some people is just isn’t for them. It’s really in their hands to decide if it’s worth it.
What shows have you got coming up, where can we see you compete?
I will probably look to put on some size and compete in an open heavyweight class around April or May. I am from Northeast Ohio so I will look for some shows in the surrounding areas.
What would you like to achieve in your natural bodybuilding career?
I would like to earn my natural pro card and continue to improve each time I step on stage.
Who are your favorite bodybuilders and idols?
I love the philosophies of Kai Greene, he is capable of describing a lot of feelings and emotions that go along with bodybuilding. The hard work of Erik Fankhouser, he has a family and works full time and still is a great competitor. The intensity of Dorian Yates, he has always had that no-nonsense attitude.