Imagine this. It’s the morning of your competition and you look the best that you ever have! The final week before your show could not have gone more smoothly and your body could have not peaked more perfectly! The only thing on your mind is stepping on stage and going to battle with the brand new physique that you have created.
Wait! That did happen.
In Part One (No Nonsense Newsletter Vol. XI, Number 2) I covered my first 8 weeks of contest preparation. Please... Let me now share with you my final 8 weeks and show you how Team Beverly assisted me in winning the heavyweight and overall novice title at the New York State Empire Natural Championships. This very strict diet, supplement and workout regimen allowed me to come in 8 lbs bigger and 10x’s leaner.
WEEK 8 – training program
Day One: Chest,Back,AbsChest: 12 sets total
4 sets 6-8 reps Bench Press
4 sets 8-10 reps DB Flyes
4 sets 8-10 reps Incline Bench Press
Back: 15 work sets
Front Chins (work up to 3 sets of 12) or 3 sets 10-12 Wide Grip Pulldown
3 sets 6-8 Bent-over Rowing
3 sets 8-10 One arm DB Row or Cable Row
3 sets 10-12 Close Grip Pulldown
Alternate 3 sets 15 reps weighted Hyperextensions one workout and
Deadlift 3 sets 10 reps
Abs: Total of 200 - 300 reps split up over three or four exercises. For example:
3 sets 25 reps Crunches
3 sets 25 reps Leg Raises off bench
3 sets 20 reps Cable Twisting Crunches
Total Reps equal 210 in example above.
Day Two: Legs Quads: 9-12 work sets total
3-4 sets 8-12 Leg Press supersetted with
3-4 sets 8-12 Leg Extension
Alternate 3-4 sets 10-15 Squats one workout and Hack Squats the next
Hamstrings: 6 work sets total
3 sets 6-10 Leg Curls
3 sets 10-15 Stiff-Leg Deadlifts (on alternate workout days that follow back "deadlift" day, perform
Seated Leg Curls, One Legged Leg Curls or DB Leg Curls)
Calves: 10 sets with any combination of three exercises. For example:
4 sets 15-20 Standing Db Calf Raise
3 sets 10-15 Seated Calf Raise
3 sets 20-25 Donkey Raise
Day Three: Shoulders and Arms Shoulders: 10 work sets total
3 sets 8-10 Side Lateral Raises
3 sets 10-12 Rear Lateral Raises
4 sets 6-10 Shoulder Press (Smith Machine, Behind Neck, Dumbbells – your choice)
Biceps: 9 work sets
3 sets 6-10 Concentration Curl
3 sets 6-10 DB Curl
3 sets 6-10 Barbell Curl
Triceps: 9 work sets
3 sets 10-12 Triceps Pushdown
3 sets 8-10 Lying Triceps Extension
3 sets 6-10 Close Grip Bench Press
Abs: Total of 200 – 350 reps split up over three or four exercises.
Day Four: Rest Day
Cardio – 15-20 minutes four times a week after training plus 15-20 minutes of posing before I hit the sack on the opposite days I performed cardio.
To keep my training regimen from becoming stagnant, at four-weeks out I started to add one or two isolation exercises per body part to bring out as much detail as possible. On these exercises I used the peak contraction principle, squeezing each rep on every set. This really resulted in more muscularity and hardness when it was show time. I also decreased my rest time between sets as the show approached. At eight weeks out, I would allow myself about 60 seconds between each set. At four weeks out, I decreased the rest time to 30 seconds. For the final week I was pretty much allowing just enough time to catch my breath and away I went into the next series of exercises.
Here is my diet/supplement schedule for week eight through week four:
AM: 8 Muscle Synergy
Breakfast: 8 egg whites; 6-8 oz turkey or chicken; 1 grapefruit
SUPPS: 1 – Super Pak, 3 EFA Gold, 4 Ultra 40, 4 Mass
Mid Morning: Protein Mix – 2 scoops Muscle Provider and 2 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein, 4 Ultra 40 and 4 Mass
45 minutes before lunch: 8 Muscle Synergy
Lunch: 10 oz chicken or turkey; 1 cup vegetables; 1 scoop Muscle Provider (to keep a positive nitrogen balance)
SUPPS: 4 Ultra 40, 4 Mass, 3 EFA Gold
Mid Afternoon: 12 oz fish; 2 cups vegetables; 4 Ultra 40, 4 Mass, 3 EFA Gold
Pre Workout: 8 Muscle Synergy; During Training: 2 scoops Glutamine Select plus BCAAs
Post Workout: Protein Shake – 3 scoops Muscle Provider on workout days; 3 scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein
on non workout days
Dinner: 12 oz fish, 2 cups vegetables, 4 Ultra 40, 4 Mass, 3 EFA Gold
Monday and Thursday carb up meal: 2 cups oatmeal; 12 oz sweet potato; 1 cup vegetables; 1 banana; 1 tbsp butter
Before bed: 8 Muscle Synergy
(Yes, I took 8 Muscle Synergy 4 times a day. Does it work? I came in natural and ripped at 225 pounds and
I don’t think that I have particularly great genetics.)
If you remember in my first article, I shared a little secret. The secret was that I giving myself a cheat meal once a week. I would eat anything that was put in front of my face for about ninety minutes. Well..... It was good while it lasted. This had to cease because I had to get harder. The carb meals on Monday and Thursday really did help to take the place of my cheat meals. However, I am also a big believer in listening to your body at certain times. So when it came time to have my carb meal and if I was absolutely starving, I would not hesitate to add an extra cup of oats or change that tablespoon of butter to two tablespoons of almond butter to fill my stomach just enough to get by till morning.
By week five, my body weight was 234 lbs and my body fat was 7.2%. Roger told me that I’d made good progress but that I had to get my body fat lower for the final four-week sprint. With this being said I was prepared to receive a cut in calories or more cardio or SOMETHING! Nope! .....Instead....... I was told to add one-half cup of oats to meal one and six ounces of sweet potatoes to meal three. I also moved my carb meals to every three days instead of just Monday and Thursday. This slight change for two weeks sent my metabolism through the roof and made me fuller, tighter and harder. IT was amazing!!! By the end of week four, my weight was around 228 and my body fat was down to 6.1%.
I emailed Roger concerning my success and he was pleased. However, he responded with these exact words ”Now that you’re three weeks out it’s time to go into the suffering mode.“ Ummmm.... Yeh, I was a little concerned. Wouldn’t you be? HAHA.
This was my diet for week three, two, and into Wednesday of the last week.
Meal 1: Five ounces chicken breast or turkey breast; six egg whites; one-half grapefruit.
Meal 2 (A): Protein Drink with two scoops Ultimate Muscle Protein or Muscle Provider, one tablespoon
healthy fat source (olive oil, flax oil, almond butter) or heavy cream.
Option (B): five ounces chicken breast or tuna; three egg whites, one tomato.
Meal 3 (A): Six to eight ounces chicken breast (weighed prior to cooking); four cups salad (lettuce,
tomato, carrot, cucumber, green peppers, etc.) or two cups low carb vegetables; two tablespoons
“Newman’s Own” dressing (or make your own with two tablespoons cider vinegar and one tablespoon olive oil).
Meal 4: same options as meal two (above) – but no added fat to my shake.
Meal 5: eight ounces chicken breast, turkey breast or 96% lean beef; two cups low carb vegetables or salad.
Meal #6 (A): six egg whites; one-cup omelet vegetables (onions, celery, broccoli, peppers).
Option (B): Protein pudding – mix one scoop Ultimate Muscle Protein in a bowl with just enough
water to make a pudding texture. Add one tablespoon almond butter.
Carb Load Meal: On Monday and Thursday evening I ate one and one-half cups oatmeal or I substituted
one and one-half cups cooked brown rice; with my oatmeal or rice I also ate a ten-ounce sweet potato,
a medium banana, one cup of low carb vegetables and one tablespoon almond butter.
(If you have the Beverly Method, you’ll find this plan is very close to the Contest Countdown Diet
plan that’s written there. Why mess with success?)
I could not have imagined the changes that my body was about to go through. I really was preparing myself mentally to accept the inevitable muscle loss going into this show. It happened every time I had done a show. NOT THIS SHOW! As a matter of fact, six days before the competition I weighed myself and I had gained almost two lbs. I freaked out! I immediately ran to the gym and had my body fat tested. I freaked out again! My body fat had dropped 1.5%. I was now 230-231 and 4.6% body fat. Everything was going right! I was fired up like never before.
However, I still had the last week to go and any person that has done a bodybuilding show knows that this can be the “make it or break it” week. I’ve tried tons of different plans for the final week before a competition with very little success. But that was about to change.
I would like to point out that this time I kept every aspect of my preparation the exact same until Wednesday before the competition. I didn’t go into any crazy carb deplete or kill myself with supersets. I learned “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”
When I received the final week information from Beverly, things were very easy to understand. So I constructed the spreadsheet below so I would have no worries from Wednesday through the day of the contest. I found myself constantly looking at my “cheat sheet” throughout the day of competition. It was worth its weight in gold. Everything was right there in front of me, I didn’t have to worry, I could just sit back, relax and focus 100% on the job at hand.
Well, all the planning and preparation paid off! On the day of the contest, I weighed 230 lbs and was the hardest and leanest I had ever been. Between the above eating schedule and water depletion, my muscles felt full and I was very dry compared to past shows.
I won my class and the overall novice. Later I learned that I was just one point shy of winning the men’s open class and my natural pro card. This was not only one of the best moments in my bodybuilding career; it was one of the best moments in my life.
Well, that’s my exact 16-week contest prep. It definitely was not for the faint of heart. I can promise you that there is no B.S. in this article. Every supplement you see and every rep I performed is true to the last word. So please... take what you may from this article however Beverly International Truly Does Work!