I started training when I was about 15 years old when I was put into an offseason football conditioning course in junior high school (and I wasn't even a football player) I remember the first week being hell for me as I had never really lifted or run sprints to complete exhaustion! However, I started noticing my body changing in the mirror, my stamina and endurance was much better and instantly, I was hooked.
I made a lot of mistakes when I first started my lifting program. I was definitely overtraining my body, training for 2-3 hours at time thinking more is better. I was also doing the same routine every time I would train. I did this for about a year before I found out that there was a much more efficient way to train.
This is where goal setting is so important! Not only setting big, long term goals but the daily or weekly goals for yourself so you stay on the right path! These goals will help you look past the temporary satisfactions in life such as eating pizza for dinner or going out drinking with your friends. I am not saying you can NEVER do this, but in order to stay consistent with your fitness program and diet you have to look past those things and keep your eyes on the goals that you have set for yourself.
Music is crucial to my success in the gym. I like to listen to hardcore music when I am lifting or doing cardio, I like heavy metal or rap. On my current playlist is Slipknot, 2Pac, T.I., Nine Inch Nails, Mudvayne and Rage Against the Machine to name a few.
When I am digging deep during the set and pushing the set to failure I think about the fact that no one made me choose this path. I chose the path that I am on and it's up to me whether I succeed or not. I'm always thinking that this temporary pain that I am feeling will lead to long-term growth, not only physically but mentally as well.
Free weights should be the bulk of everyone's workout routine in my opinion. With machines, everything is locked into its range and path of motion equating to less stimulus on the body. Free weights put a higher demand on the primary, secondary and third tier muscles, which leads to more growth! Squats, deadlifts and dumbbell presses just CANNOT be replicated by a machine.
Inside the gym I am most proud of my consistency and the fact that I am a lifetime drug free fitness model/bodybuilder. Consistency is the key to success to any endeavor and even I have those days where I'd rather do anything than go to the gym but I find a way to make it happen - day in and day out. Outside of the gym I am proud of the business and training clientele that I have been able to build up in NYC. I am so proud of their success and work ethic and it's so contagious that it inspires me! It comes full circle.
I come from a bodybuilding background in which I would compete 1-2x a year and then spend the rest of the year bulking up. However, now my main focus is fitness modelling and competing as a Men's Physique competitor so I stay pretty lean year round.
My cardio consists of the Stairmaster 3-4x a week at 20 minutes each session of HIIT. Sometimes for 30 mins at a slower pace. One crucial point for me about cardio is always taking BCAA's and glutamine pre and post cardio to ensure my muscle is protected and not used as fuel during the cardio session. I throw in a lot of supersets, drop sets and some circuits during my weight training to keep my heart rate elevated and keep metabolism high as well.
I usually train with weights 5 days a week with a 3 on, 1 off, 2 on, 1 off split. I hit every muscle ONCE a week and work it to complete failure. Workouts are no longer than 60 minutes. Here is what a normal split looks like for me ...
When I am training to be in peak condition, I will go to the gym twice a day and split up my weight training and cardio. These workouts focus on free weights, really focusing on the negative portion of the exercise. I have included my YouTube channel which has some of my workout routines posted!
When I am dieting for peak condition my diet usually consists of a high protein, moderate fat and strategic low carb approach. I say "strategic" because I take in carbs when I need them (pre and post workout) and I don't take them in when I don't need them (before bed for example). I eat about 6 times a day taking in about 40grams of protein with each meal. A lot of these meals come in the form of whey protein isolate shakes. My preferred source of carbs are oatmeal, sweet potatoes, dextrose or vitargo (post workout) and leafy green vegetables.
Some of my favorite bodybuilders and fitness models growing up were guys like Steve Reeves, Frank Zane and more recently Stan McQuay. They all have aesthetic physiques that I am constantly trying to emulate. Also, Greg Plitt and what he has accomplished in the fitness industry is a huge inspiration. And finally, my mentor and coach Jeff Dwelle who has always led me in the right direction and gave me great insight into the fitness industry as young kid starting out.
I am a big believer in supplements. I take fish oil, arginine, creatine monohydrate, glutamine, carnitine, glucosamine, BCAA's, multivitamins and anti oxidants.
My 3 tips for anyone looking to get Cut and Jacked would be
1.) Leave your ego at the door. Your ego will only hurt you in the long run. Don't worry about the amount of weight you're lifting, focus on stimulating the muscle!
2.) Stay consistent! Physiques aren't built in a week, a month or even a year. But if you stay consistent with your training, diet, rest and supplementation then it will lead to great gains.
3.) Be willing to try something new! Too many people in this industry are so locked into their own way of thinking that they block everyone and everything else out. A minor tweak here or there could really help you make monumental gains. So, be willing to try something slightly different than what you're comfortable with. Being uncomfortable is a good thing sometimes!
These principles should be applied in and outside of the gym!
Born 07/01/85, 185lbs at 5'10