Split Back workout

/ Posted 07.31.2008

With Tricia out of town this week I’ve been training with various people. I was hoping today to train back with Rita and her son, Daniel, around noon. Daniel had his knee scoped just a couple weeks ago, so I was pretty sure that he wouldn’t be up for deadlifting. So, since I had an hour free earlier in the morning I decided to deadlift on my own at Hyde Park Gym at 9:30, then meet up with Rita and Daniel for the rest of my back workout at noon. I had a pretty good deadlift workout. My strength was down, but that wasn’t surprising since I haven’t deadlifted off the floor in a few weeks, plus my legs are still very sore from Monday’s leg workout. I finished up my deadlifts and threw in a couple sets of pullups before I got my next client started. As it turned out, Rita couldn’t make it today and I worked out on my own at noon. I took the opportunity to scramble my workout a bit and it gave me a super pump in my lats. It’s now 6:30pm and I’m already getting sore. Tomorrow should be interesting!!!

Early workout:

Deadlifts 10 sets 135X10, 185X8, 225X6, 275X4, 315X3, 365X2, 385X1, 385X1, 365X3, 315X6

Pullups 10, 8 I did a 10 second hold in the contracted position on the last rep of each set

Noon Workout:

One arm DB Row 6 sets 8-10 reps (new PR in weight used)

Lat Pulldown 4 sets 8-12 reps

Seated cable Row 4 sets 8-10 reps’

High Pulley Row 4 sets 8-10 reps

Straight arm pulldown 4 sets 8-10 reps

As I’ve done the last 2 nights, I’ll get 25 minutes in on the lifecycle (or until my foot goes to sleep) and then get in the hot tub at Lifetime Fitness.

Filed Under: Back, Photos

Monday and Tuesday workouts

/ Posted 07.29.2008

Yesterday was an interesting workout day. My partner, Tricia, is out of town so I was planning to workout with my friend, Rebekah Gregory. Well, Rebekah’s legs were so sore from her workout last friday that she wasn’t ready to work legs yet, so I thought I was going to be on my own. Just as I started with squats my buddy, Rocky and his training partner, Natasha showed up on the next squat rack. They were really hitting it hard. That got me fired up, plus I had Rocky there to spot me on my heaviest sets. I ended up having a great squatting session. About the time I started leg presses Rita and her son, Daniel showed up on the next leg press machine. As usual, I know that if I don’t go all out Rita is going to make me look bad, so I pounded out some killer sets on the leg press. When I went to the leg extension machine Rocky and Natasha were on it, so I worked in with them. Rocky had to leave after about 4 sets, but Natasha finished the rest of the leg workout with me. She’s as strong as Rita on the extensions and curls, so she pushed me to the max! My legs are so sore today!!!

Squats 10 sets 10, 10, 10, 10, 6, 3, 3, 7, 8, 15

Leg Press 9 sets 7sets of 20 reps, then 16 and 15 with 810 lbs on the last 2 sets

Leg Ext 5 sets 10-12 reps

Seated Leg Curl 5 sets 10-12 reps

Donkey Calf Raise 6 sets 12-15 reps (increased wt.)

Today Rebekah met me at Hyde Park Gym for a chest workout. We haven’t gotten together for about 6 weeks, so it was great to see her and hear about how her summer has been going. She just an enjoyable person to be around and makes the workout alot of fun!

Bench press 8 sets 15, 12, 10, 10, 8, 5, 4, 8

Incline Press 5 sets 10, 10, 8, 6, 15

Pec Fly Machine 4 sets 12 reps

Standing DB Curls (my bonus bicep work) 4 sets 8-12 reps

Filed Under: Legs

Sunday Posing Practice

/ Posted 07.29.2008

Sunday at noon I met with David and Hank to do some posing practice.  David is competing this weekend at the Pro Natural Mid-America.  He’s looking really good for his pro debut.  The photos were taken with a flash and because it’s close-up the flash washes out alot of detail.  David’s quads, glutes, triceps and shoulders are deeply striated, but it doesn’t show up well on these pics.

Even having done very little cardio last week and hosting a birthday party on Saturday (no workout at all on Saturday), Diana and I both felt that my legs were looking even harder than they did at the Masters Nationals.  At this rate I’m going to be freaky shredded by the Team Universe.

Filed Under: Contest Prep, Posing

Back and arms

/ Posted 07.25.2008

Yesterday I was so thankful that Tricia needed to do the chest workout. My forearms and hands were still tired and sore from holding weights in the photo shoots Tuesday and Wednesday. Today they felt fine so I was ready to hit a back workout. Brenda contacted me about possibly working arms with her, so I thought “since I’m a day behind, why not work both back and arms today?” As it turned out, Brenda couldn’t make it, but David Nall e-mailed me about working out. He was due for an arm workout, so after I finished an abbreviated back workout (my lower back and hamstrings were extremely sore so I didn’t deadlift), David and I got a great arm workout. David is preparing for his WNBF Pro debut at the Pro Natural Mid-American and is in tremendous condition. We are going to do some posing practice together on Sunday, too.


Lat Pulldowns 5 sets 8-12 reps

Pullups 3 sets 9, 8, 7 reps

Seated Cable Row 4 sets 8-10 reps

One arm DB Row 4 sets 8-10 reps


Skull Crushers 5 sets 10-12 reps

Pressdowns 4 sets 12-15 reps

Dips 3 sets 30, 30, 21

Standing DB Curls 4 sets 7-10 reps

Barbell Curls 4 sets 7-8 reps

Hammer Curls 4 sets 10 reps

I used some Flex-solate (not sure if I spelled that right) wraps on my Pulldowns and Seated Rows. Mike Neveux photographed me using them in the photo shoot on Wed and I really liked them. It’s much easier to concentrate on your lats and you don’t have to hold onto the bar at all. You can also rotate your wrists during you pull. I highly recommend them!

Filed Under: Arms, Back

Photo shoot

/ Posted 07.24.2008

After only one day at home I got on a plane for LA at 7:30am on Tuesday. I had a two-day photo shoot scheduled with Ironman photographer, Michael Neveux. I’ve shot with Mike on 2 other occasions and I love his work. His studio is absolutely incredible, and the way he lights the photos really brings out the muscularity to the max! I arrived at LAX at 9:35 and was picked up by Michael Jude. We went straight to the studio and got busy. On Tuesday we shot shoulders, biceps, triceps, abs and chest. I did about 4 exercises per bodypart. For anyone who has never done a workout photo shoot, it’s grueling! Mike wore me out! The sweat you see in the photos is real sweat! Holding the weights, stopping and flexing in various parts of the movements is extremely hard work. At various points in the shoot we did some posing shots and also some shots with some of the Muscle Link Products. Although I was exhausted by the time we finished, I really had a blast doing it!

Jude took me to my hotel late in the afternoon. I laid out at the pool for a little while, then went for a 2 mile walk before dinner. I was really excited about shooting Wednesday because I was schedule to do a cover shoot with model/actress, Raven Lexy.

On Wednesday I got up early, had breakfast and then went for a 2 mile walk. I was picked at 9:00 and taken back to Mike’s studio. Raven was already there with the make-up artist and we got to visit for a while before Mike arrived. We spent about and hour and a half shooting for the cover. I think we got some really good stuff! Raven said that doing fashion shoots was so much easier because she never had to flex in the fashion shoots. After Raven left we broke for lunch, then went back to work shooting exercises for back and legs. When we finally finished up I was absolutely fried! My forearms and hands were so tired that I had a hard time carrying my luggage. It was very hard work, but I loved every minute of it! I’d do it again tomorrow….or, as soon as my forearms recover! LOL!

Here’s a shot of me a Lexy taken before the shoot with my phone.

Filed Under: Photos

A little weak today

/ Posted 07.21.2008

I was very excited to be back home and get back into my normal routine again. However, after all the pumping, posing, and just general stress of the competition, five and a half hours of sleep was just not enough. It wasn’t surprising that my knees and back hurt and I was just a little bit weak in the leg workout today. Fortunately I had both of my smokin’ hot training partners today so I couldn’t totally wimp out. The hip flexor that I tore just 8 days ago is still a little sore, so protecting that area from re-injury was in the back of my mind as well. But, all things considered I got a pretty darn good leg workout today.

Hack Squats 6 sets 12-15 reps

Squats 4 sets 10-15 reps

Leg Press 5 sets 20-25 reps

Seated Leg Curls 4 sets 12 reps (amazingly increased weight)

Leg Extensions 4 sets 12-15 reps

Standing Calf Raise 4 sets 15 reps

Donkey Calf Raise 5 sets 12-15 reps

Filed Under: Legs

NPC Masters Nationals

/ Posted 07.21.2008

I didn’t get home from Pittsburgh until midnight last night and was up at 6am this morning to come to work.  It’s been a hectic day, as I’m leaving tomorrow morning about 7:30am to go to LA for a 2-day photo shoot with Michael Neveux for Ironman Magazine.  It’s now 6:30pm and I finally have time to sit at my computer and catch up on my blogging.  I really need a laptop so that I’m never computerless!

Anyway, my last “official” workout of last week was on Wednesday when Tricia and I met to train arms.  I hit it pretty hard, even though prejudging was on Friday.  I still have more competitions and guest posing this year and I want to continue to improve.  Here’s our bi and tri workout:

Standing DB Curls  6 sets 9-12 reps, drop set on final set

Cable Curls 4 sets 10-12 reps

Hammer Curls 3 sets 10-12 reps

Skull Crushers 5 sets 12-20 reps

Pressdowns 4 sets 12-15 reps

Seated Tricep Extension 4 sets 15-20 reps

Thursday I traveled to Pittsburgh so that I could make the Thursday evening weigh-in.  I wanted to compete in the welterweight class (165 lb. limit) and I was 169 lbs when I went to bed on Wednesday night.  We had a 5:30am flight out of Austin so we got up at 3:15am (after going to bed about midnight).  I weighed 168.5 lbs when I woke up, so I decided to allow myself a small cup of coffee.  With a 3 hour layover in Atlanta I made the mistake of allowing myself another small cup of coffee.  We got to Pittsburgh, checked into our hotel, then walked about mile to the Golds Gym.  I got on the scale and was still weighing 168 lbs, even though I had not eaten anything, or drank anything besides the 2 small cups of coffee all day.  It was about 4:00 and the weigh-in started at 5pm.  I went as hard as I could on a lifecycle for about 15mins, then did a full body workout for about 30 mins and still was only down to 167.5 lbs.  I was so freakin’ thirsty that it was all I could do not to have a drink of water!  But, I sucked it up and got into the sauna.  It took me about 30 mins in the sauna to lose the 2.5 lbs down to 165.  Then Diana and I walked about another mile to the Sheraton Hotel where the weigh-in was being conducted.  After about 30 mins of standing in line, I was so relieved to step on the scale just under 165 lbs.  I was absolutely exhasuted!  After a couple of meals and plenty of water I was back up to a rock hard 170 lbs the next day.

The contest was outstanding.  With 415 competitors it’s the biggest show I’ve been involved in.  The backstage staff did a fantastic job!  I was absolutely amazed at how good all of the masters competitors were!  My class had about 15 guys.  I could tell by the comparisons that I was in the top 5, but I knew that it must be very close.  After looking at Dan Ray’s photos on Saturday morning I knew that I had done everything I could do.  My body was ready and I posed extremely well.  I felt like I had a really good shot at winning my class.  As it turned out, I learned that there was some controversy during the welterweight prejudging.  Some of the judges apparently thought that I was still a WNBF Pro.  When that news reached me I was worried that I might not place.  Jim Manion assured me that my status in the NPC was good, but I knew that the judging was already done and that something like that could tip the scales in a very close contest.  So, I was not too surprised to be called out in 2nd place.  Welterweight Champ, Kent Bierly, was very very good and deserving.  Ironically he is also a former WNBF Pro.  Overall I had a great time at the show!  Again the competitors were very impressive and Gary Udit did a masterful job running the show.

I couldn’t have done it without Diana’s help with almost every aspect of my preparation, including doing most of my thinking for me in the last couple days.


Just shoulders today

/ Posted 07.15.2008

With the hip flexor tear that I suffered on Sunday all of my cardio is now confined to the Lifecycle.  No Shredder Walks for me this week!  But, with the exception of a few times that I’ve forgotten about the injury and took too big of a step off of a curb, it’s not really bothering me.  Whatever it is that I tore seems to only have stress on it when my leg is extended well behind my body.  Hopefully it will be healed up enough by next week to resume walking for cardio.  My feet are going numb after about 20-25 minutes on the exercise bike.

Tricia and I met today for a shoulder workout at Golds.  We are both sore from doing chest and back yesterday, which made the shoulder workout more difficult than I expected.  We knew we didn’t have alot to do so we both pushed it hard.  My delts were pumped and burning by the time we finished!

Shoulder Workout:

Seated DB Press 7 sets 15, 15, 12, 10, 10, 6, 12

DB Lateral Raises 5 sets 10-12 reps with a drop set on the final set

Rear Delt Machine Fly  5 sets 12-15 reps

Filed Under: Shoulders

The final week before Masters Nationals

/ Posted 07.14.2008

Monday is usually leg day for me, but since the prejudging for the Masters Nationals is on Friday evening Tricia and I met yesterday (Sunday) afternoon to blast our legs. Although I usually try not to workout (weight train) on the weekends, it was nice not to have to worry about either of us having to get back to work at a certain time. After only 2 weeks of training with me Tricia has improved significantly in leanness, strength and endurance! Once again I was surprised with my own strength increases, particularly at this bodyweight and in contest condition. The one thing that snuck up on me was a little injury while I was stretching after my workout. I was doing a lunge stretch for my hip flexors and something tore in the top of my right leg. It doesn’t really hurt posing and doesn’t bother me much while walking unless I get in too big of a hurry. I did my cardio on the Lifecycle this morning and it was fine. I don’t think it’s going to hamper me this week, other than limiting the cardio that I’m doing to the exercise bike.

Leg Workout:

Hack Squats 5 sets 12 reps (increased weight)

Squats 5 sets 12, 10, 10, 8, 3

Leg Press 5 sets 20 reps

Leg Extension 5 sets 12-15 reps (increased weight)

Seated Leg Curl 5 sets 12-15 reps (increased weight)

Donkey Calf Raise 6 sets 12-15 reps

Today Tricia met me at Hyde Park Gym for our chest and back workout. I always work my large muscle groups early in the week when I have a contest. My strength was off a little bit but I think it was because I was conscious of not flexing the injured hip flexor when I was squeezing out the last couple hard reps of each set. My bodyweight and leanness may have something to do with it too. I weighed 169 lbs at 2.6% bodyfat (by skindex calipers) today.

Chest Workout:

Bench Press 6 sets 12, 12, 10, 10, 8, 6

Incline Press 5 sets 12, 10, 8, 6, 13

Pec Fly Machine 4 sets 10-12 reps

Back Workout:

Lat Pulldowns 4 sets 6-12 reps

Seated Cable Row 4 sets 10-12 reps

High Pulley Row 4 sets 10-12 reps (increased weight)

Straight Arm Pulldowns 3 sets 12-15 reps

Filed Under: Chest, Legs

Blasting back, shoulders and arms

/ Posted 07.11.2008

Yesterday Rita had to take her son to an appoint with Dr. Burns, so it was just me and Tricia hitting the back workout.  Tricia is making great progress in her workouts and I continued to surprise myself with strength increases in some exercises.  Our back workout was fantastic!!!

Back Workout:

Lat Pulldowns 5 sets 8-12 reps (increased weight)

Seated Cable Row 5 set 10-12 reps (increased wt.)

High Pulley Row 4 sets 9-12 reps (increased wt)

One Arm DB Row 3 sets 10-12 reps (increased wt)

Deadlifts (off the floor) 5 sets 12, 10, 8, 6, 3    I was feeling really good on the first 3 sets then totally ran out of gas.  Only 365X3 on my last set, but given the increases on everything else, I was not surprised that my back was totally exhausted.  And, it’s very sore today!

Today Tricia and I met at Gold’s for our shoulder and arm workout.  I was afraid the fatigue and soreness from my back workout would hinder me, but it didn’t  and we had a great workout again today!  My strength and endurance are amazing for being in contest shape!

Shoulders, Tris, Bis:

Seated DB Press  7 sets 8-15 reps

Lateral Raise  4 sets 10-12 reps  with drop set on the final set

Rear Delt machine flys  4 sets 12-15 reps (increased wt.)

Skull Crushers 4 sets 10-15 reps (increased wt.)

Pressdowns 4 sets 12-15 reps  (increased reps at top wt.)

Seated Tricep Extension  4 sets 20, 10, 12, 25

Standing DB Curls 4 sets 8-10 reps with drop set on final set

Cable Curls 4 sets 10-12 reps (increased wt)

Tricia wanted to do some ab work with me.  Even though we were both pretty exhausted, we sucked it up and punished our abs.

Hanging Leg Raises (very controlled) 4 sets 10-12 reps

Crunches (flexing hard at the contracted position) 4 sets 12-15 reps

Filed Under: Abs, Shoulders & Arms