How did you get started in bodybuilding and fitness?
I got started in bodybuilding when I was about 18 yrs old. I have picked up weights as early as 7 and played with them off and on throughout the years, but it wasn’t until I graduated high school that I wanted to devote more time to sculpting my physique.
Was there a defining moment that got you to start training at a whole different level?
Can’t exactly say that there was a defining moment that got me to training harder than before, because I always push myself in the gym to be the best that I can be. Sometimes I will see someone in the gym that would have been more developed than myself and that would usually inspire me to work harder but outside of that, I am always challenging myself to constantly change.
What are the top 2 ways you keep motivated?
Looking at various future projects definitely keeps me motivated. My line of work usually requires me to gain a few pounds and lose a few pounds. I would also say that inspiring others to workout and lead a healthier lifestyle is another thing that motivates me to stay in shape. When people walk up to me or email me online and say that they want to look exactly like me, is flattering, so indirectly I must have inspired someone, all good.
What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome in your fitness career thus far?
Funny you mention the hurdles, I often wonder that myself. I live in Houston, Texas so its a good centralized part of the U.S. where it takes no more than 3 hrs to get just about anywhere by plane, domestically, and its also cheaper than the larger cities to live. However, this is not really the place to be if you want constant work as a model. NY and LA dominate the market in terms of the entertainment business. I do like to travel though, so maybe living in a cheaper place and traveling to the more expensive places from time to time will work out after all.
In your opinion what is the hardest part about being a fitness model?
The hardest part for me would be maintaining the physique. Getting to the gym 6 days a week is very routine, there’s no exception to this rule. If you are getting your start working out, going to a new job, or any major lifestyle change, it will be a challenge at first, but once you work out all the kinks, it will be systematic before long. Its also very expensive to stay in shape. The supplements, the nutrition, new clothes all the time, etc.
If you had to ratio the importance of training, diet and rest, what would the percentages look like and why? (e.g. 20% training, 30% diet, 30% rest)
Diet 50%, training 30%, rest 20%. I would like to give all of them 33% a piece as these ratios would change throughout the year depending on if you want to slim down or bulk up. Ultimately your diet will dictate how lean you get versus how bulky you are. I typically don’t make very many alterations in the gym, its the tuna fish – low carb diet that works for me to slim down. Lets not forget about rest now either. Resting is when the muscles rebuild themselves, when we workout, that’s the destructive phase.
How useful do you think supplements are? Do you use supplements? What is your current top supplement?
Supplements are very useful, permitting you know what your doing. For beginners, I would usually recommend a good whey protein, as its best for optimal absorption. I usually don’t start recommending the test boosters, NO products, pre-workout stimulants, creatine, or fat burners, etc until the person has worked out for several months. The body can accomplish a lot on its own and supplements should only be used to get over hurdles and should be cycled to “shock” the body. Changing the use of different supplements through time will often cause a diversion and help confuse the body into breaking through these plateaus and assist you with better gains.
Its hard to say what my current top supplement is because you have things that help you maintain mass, (protein, NO products, test boosters etc) supplements for energy, (caffeine, B6 vitamins etc) and weight loss supplements. I guess the supplement, believe it or not that I use everyday or I won’t be able to function are caffeine tablets. Its good for the mind and the body. I will not have a good workout without them.
What is your current training routine?
I probably have the strangest training routine of all time. I typically pick one muscle to train a day, say on arm day. I will start off with either incline or flat bench, lifting moderately light weight, and do about 3-4 sets, to get a good pump going. Any compound exercise such as the bench press will get all your skeletal muscles pumped and working good. The better the blood flow, the more efficiently blood can circulate throughout the body, which increases oxygenation, recovery, and decreases the build-up of lactic acid, etc. I do very light weight when doing these, careful not to “over do it” and have experienced massive gains while doing this. Typically the average person hits each muscle group once a week. At this rate certain body parts are going about 7 days before they are trained again, so with my method, I am focusing on one muscle group as mentioned earlier, but am including a lot of secondary muscles in the work out so I am not disproportioned down the road.
What is your current diet routine?
My current diet routine is high protein, high carb, low fat. It has always been that way. 50-40-10 ratio. I like chicken, turkey, steak (sometimes) and tuna as my lean meats. Rice is my favorite carb and avocados and fish oils are my favorites healthy fats.
How did you get those awesome arms?
Awesome arms? Well you can’t do very much these days without using your arms. You could see someone in the gym doing shoulder shrugs and ask them what muscles they were working out. 9 out of 10 times they will come back and say their traps. I’d repeat the question again and say, “what muscle”s” are you working out? Long story short, all the skeletal muscles in the body are connected. The muscles in the hand, to the forearm, to the upper arm, to the shoulder, to the pecs and so on. So just picking up a set of dumbbells to do shoulder shrugs is in essence, still working out the arms. Now you won’t get the full contraction until you lift it properly but arms are included in just about every exercise, whether you like it or not. So over the years and after many hours in the gym, that’s one area of the body that’s impossible to neglect.
Who is your favorite bodybuilder? (other than yourself!)
My favorite Bodybuilder would have to Arnold Schwarzenegger. I was first inspired to work out by watching him and his Conan movies. He could win the life time achievement award 3 times over, for the bodybuilding, movies, and now politics. Wow.
Describe what you see when you look at yourself in the mirror!
Looking in the mirror? I am my own worse critic and always see areas for improvement, so I try not to look in the mirror too much, as I get insecure as well.
If you could tell a fitness noob just one sentence of advice, what woud it be?
I would say to a fitness noob, first establish your goals, second, make sure they are REASONABLE, and lastly, do what it takes to make it happen. Don’t give up.
What is your favorite workout song?
Goodness, there are several songs I listen to while working out. I like Lady Ga Ga’s Poker face, Counting Crows, Linkin Park, etc.
Favorite quote, “looking good tomorrow, means taking care of yourself today.”
Best type of cardio?
Most people would say that running/jogging is the best cardio but I think that swimming is. Swimming you are getting a full body workout and not just your legs as you would with running. You are also essentially weightless in water, weighing approximately 5 times less in water than you would on land, so its easier to propel yourself and also less strenuous on your joints and tendons, where most injuries occur. (I usually refer morbidly obese clients to aquatics therapy as a slow way of getting them back into the circuit for reasons I just mentioned). Your also in the water, so its easier to keep the body cool and if your looking for more resistance, wear some cotton pants and shirt. This will help create lag or resistance.
It may not be as convenient to get in the water everyday for some people, but try to incorporate different methods of cardio in your workout, to trick your mind, your body, and to help prevent your work outs from becoming too routine.
How do you feel about ketogenic diets?
Ketogenic diets. Never fully understood how using fats as fuels over carbs was more beneficial than doing the opposite. Your carbs are used as energy just like fats but carbs in excess, will convert into fat on their own, (glucose to glycogen) so no need to have a double whammy (fat) right? Don’t get me wrong, your healthy fats are essential, but just keep them to a minimum. After all, all diets have one thing in common. Regardless of the name of the diet, they all strive to help the dieter understand nutrition and keep their portions under control and understand what they are putting into their bodies. Now the diet itself, depending on which one, will dictate what those foods are.
If you were to upload your arms to our muscle voting site (http://vote.ratemyarms.com) right now, what do you think you would rate?
Uploading my arms to muscle site, would probably rate myself as a 5 out of 10. I am always looking to improve and set very high goals for myself and am a little modest as well. So if I end up getting a 5.5, I would feel accomplished.
What do you like to do outside of training and dieting?
Outside of training and dieting I like to travel, go to the beach with my doggie, Nellie, visit new places, go to the mall, normal stuff.
What is the dumbest thing you have done or witnessed in the gym?
The dumbest thing I witnessed in the gym? This actually happens all the time; people often times look at the gym as a place to work out and stay in shape and others look at it like a social scene and are constantly talking in between sets. 5-10 minutes go by in between their sets and they will not only lose their momentum but will probably anger the people that are waiting for their turn on the equipment.
Who is taking the crown this year for the Mr. Olympia?
I would go for Jay Cutler.
What is your favorite body part to train? Your least favorite?
Most favorite body part to train, probably arms, least favorite, like most people, legs.