Posted 12 March 2011 by Interview:

Sean Harley

How and when did you start training?

I started training in high school for sports. My sophomore year I got a new football coach who was into bodybuilding and taught me a lot about lifting for muscle development as well as power.

Please describe a typical day for you?

I co-own a gym where I also personal train so I’m usually getting up around 5:30 am and training clients by 6:30 then finishing up at around 7 or 8 pm. I try to take off about 3 hours or so in the afternoon to workout myself before getting back to work to train clients, teach classes, and develop my other business ventures, as well as handle the day to day business of running a gym.

What is your training routine like?

My routines vary for the actual workouts although I stick to a few principles for all the different muscle groups. For instance on chest, I’ll do a flat press and a incline press each workout but I switch up which one I do first as well as vary whether I’m using a bar or dumbbells or a certain machine that I like. Cardio will also vary as to whether I’m bulking, cutting or, trying to do a little of both. This is a sample of what I do when I’m building while cutting bodyfat. On top of the lifting split here I’d do 10-15 minutes of HIIT cardio on every day except leg day (because I can’t walk after those workouts). My favorite HIIT routine is incline sprints on the treadmill. I set the incline to 15 degrees and sprint full speed for 10 seconds followed by a 50 second rest. I also like to do 30 seconds full speed / 30 seconds slow on a stairmill or stairstepper. If I’m cutting hard for a shoot I’d add in endurance cardio on the rest days and as a second session at the end of the day during the week. That consists of 45 minutes on a machine keeping the heart rate around 125 bpm.

Click image below to download Sean Harleys 5-day a week exercise routine.

What is your diet when trying to get in peak condition?

When cutting for a shoot I like to follow high/medium/low carb rotation going high (200 grams) on big muscle days (leg and back), medium (100 grams) on other lifting days (chest, shoulder, and arms), and low (20 grams) on rest days. For the last 12 days I’ll do a 2 day off / 1 day on carb rotation. This means go as low as possible for 2 days and then carb up on the 3rd day. The day before the shoot will be a high carb day to fill the muscles up. My protein will stay constant at around 250-300 grams a day and I’ll add good fats on my lower carb days and cut the fats on my carb days.

How do you deal with cravings for junk foods,
sweets and salty food?

Besides just keeping my eyes on the prize and being mentally tough to overcome cravings I use the fatburning supplement ChiKara which has a great effect on my overall appetite control as well helping to regulate blood sugar so I don’t crash and binge. I also find that chewing gum and drinking a lot of water helps too.

How do you managed to stay
motivated and consistent?

I love working out and if I don’t I feel sloppy and lazy, so that’s pretty good motivation right there. The satisfaction that I have, when I look and feel good keeps me going. Also being in the business that I’m in as a personal trainer and fitness model I understand that my success is directly related to my personal efforts in the gym and at the dinner table, so I treat it as more than just a hobby, because it’s my job, but when you love what you do it’s not a job at all.

What is your greatest bodybuilding/
fitness achievement so far?

One of my proudest achievements was winning bodybuilding.coms first ever bodyspace spokesmodel contest. Not only did that give me a cover and spread in IRONMAN and the opportunity to work with some amazing people at the biggest fitness/bodybuilding events in the country but it has also opened other doors for me as well.

What are your future goals?

I plan on maintaining regular appearances in the major fitness mags as well as continue to develop my own business ventures. I’m working on developing a supplement line right now as well as growing and improving my online training website,, where I already work with clients in about 20 different countries around the world. I also see a book in the future to counter some of the popular “diet” books that have come out in the last couple of years.


Who are your favourite bodybuilders/
athletes or fitness models?

I’ve got a lot of respect for Layne Norton for the science and intellect he’s brought to the natural bodybuilding world. I’ve also gotta to give props to Greg Plitt for what he’s achieved as a fitness model.

What is the number one philosophy you live by?

My favorite quote is, “You are what you create and you are ALWAYS creating.” Whether we’re talking about our body, our job, or our relationships with others I believe that we create our own reality and our own destiny.

What top 3 tips would you give to anyone
wanting to get CutAndJacked?

  1. Learn how to eat to meet your goals. Once you get this down, your body will transform right in front of your eyes! Eat to meet long term goals not for short term satisfaction.
  2. Keep a mind/muscle connection when lifting to focus on getting the most out of the muscle that your targeting while using the secondary muscles as little as possible.
  3. Keep it natural and train with me at

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