Wow, it's finally here! After literally 10 years of trying to get on the cover of my favorite magazine, I finally achieved my dream of making the cover of IronMan Magazine. The September 2011 issue has finally hit the book stores out here in Tampa, Florida so it's now official.
The story inside the magazine details the training and nutrition programs that I used to get into top shape this year so I won't repeat it all here. Needless to say, I was very motivated this year to finally achieve the best shape that I've been in in a long time and I did it by bringing my weight down to 190 pounds. I credit the new diet I used which consisted of only moderate amounts of protein and low fat with more complex carbs. This diet helped me to keep my energy up, my muscles fuller and my skin tighter.
I also used a new training program that involved forced negative repetitions after completing eight regular reps. This was a great training program to use when I was dieting because my strength was lower due to my lower bodyfat and less calories. The HRT (Hell Raiser Training) helped me to get a great pump because of the extended sets which forced more blood into the muscles.
I want to thank Mike Neveux for taking the awesome pictures in the magazine. Mike is definitely one of the best photographers in the business and it's always an honor to work with him. This was the first time Mike was really impressed with my condition and I know he doesn't impress easily so I knew I finally achieved peak condition when he complimented me at the beginning of the photo shoot.
I also want to thank John Balik and Steve Holman for their continued support. John and Steve have always been in my corner since I started writing my column Naturally Huge for IronMan Magazine in January of 2000. John was at the photo shoot this time so it was great he took the time out of his busy schedule to be at the shoot. Steve was the one who emailed me the very next day to tell me the good news that I made the cover. I think Steve was almost as excited as I was that I finally made it.
I was training at a great gym this year as I prepared for the photo shoot. The Powerhouse Gym in downtown Tampa is one of the best gyms I have ever trained at. The owners, Matt, Eddy and Johnny, welcomed me into the gym with open arms from the first day I visited the gym last year. In this age of corporate owned gyms, it's so nice to be at a gym where the owners appreciate what I have done in the sport. I'm glad I was able to share the joy of this cover with them because they have been so supportive.
Now that I have achieved this great condition, I am going to continue to do photo shoots and possibly even compete later in the year. I've taken some great photos this year and I want to continue with the streak and keep going strong in 2011. Stay tuned for more updates!