Bodybuilding is an intimidating thought to many, and a sport that so few will ever understand. We all have our dreams, goals, hobbies and aspirations that make us unique. For me, bodybuilding is my passion. Many athletes, such as myself, find bodybuilding as a direct translation from their current lifestyle. Like most sports, there is a special euphoric reward for those who take interest in them. As a result, the sport slowly becomes a way of life, and a defining characteristic to one's being.
My fitness journey began when I was a young adult. I grew up with the drive to be the absolute best in all I do, from school to sports, and later to my professional career. In fact, I was first bit with the bodybuilding bug around the age of nineteen. Previously, around age seventeen, I had suffered various knee injuries, which ended my time in high-school and college sports.
However, after approximately two years of being in the dumps about not being able to follow my passion, I suddenly took interest in getting back in the gym and improving my physique. As this interest grew, I began to experience that euphoric reward.
This gave a fast shift to my curiosity in the structure of the human body and its muscular potential. With my new hobby in motion and my new lifestyle beginning, I never imagined becoming some “musclebound freak” or some “bodybuilder” flexing his freakishly large muscles on stage in a “speedo.” In the process of getting exposed more and more to the bodybuilding community, I began to slowly change my way of thinking. I started to buy supplements and issues of flex magazine, and I became ever more curious on nutrition and supplementation. What's more, I could spend hours a day researching training programs, diets, supplements and human anatomy. Consequently, I got to make new friends who followed the hardcore fitness lifestyle. All in all, at this point I was hooked, and the results from my hard work were showing! The feeling of the pump, the look of striated muscle, the sweat, the burn after each set…I was sculpting my body to be the best!
As with any sport, there is the need for fundamental knowledge. However, bodybuilding is unique in that it is not a mainstream sport, and it has always been judged by its tight community and reclusive nature. Interestingly, it was not until recently that we have seen the sport take new forms and steps towards mainstream exposure. Nonetheless, due to its outgoing and primal nature, this sport can be quite intimidating to newcomers.
For this reason, there will always remain the need for experience in topics that will forever stay in the dark. Therefore, my intent is to shed the light on these subjects to those who are going through the discovery process, much like I did myself. I want to give an inside look at what it takes to set foot on that stage - from choosing a show, to posing suits, tanning, training, dieting and cycling.
I began this journey as a nineteen year old kid at about 6’1 and 175lbs. Today, I stand at 240lbs from a recent bulk at 280lbs. Hence, over the past couple of months I have shed 40lbs. Recently, I have come to a point where I feel ready to step on the NPC stage. Never did I imagine being where I am today. Seeing the veins, the muscle, the striations that were under my bulking phase shell is the most rewarding feeling I have had. I have put countless hours of blood, sweat and effort to crafting my ideal physique.
This is my journey to the stage, from how I got here to the process leading up. I hope to help others by providing the inside look to contest prep and what it really takes to be a bodybuilder. Nevertheless, I will be doing this prep on my own without using a physical coach. My prep will rely on my existing knowledge and remote advice from friends, who are coaches and competitors themselves. I will take you through my step by step approach to my first show. As of today, we sit exactly fifty days out from the JTF Physique Championship, where I will be competing in the Men’s Novice Heavyweight division and taking my first step in becoming a bodybuilder.