Our Amateur Bodybuilder of the Week was...
Francisco J. Montealegre
How Did You Get Started?
Since I can remember I always wanted to look strong and muscular, unfortunately I was born with a very ectomorphic body type. I grew up being a skinny but active kid. I got involved with a lot of sports (Swimming, Baseball, Football, Etc...) that way I discovered my first passion... Martial Arts.
I practiced Karate Renbukai (Full Contact Karate) for 7 years. I was very competitive and successful in competitions as a teenager but when I turned 18 and I had to fight against adults I got my @ss kicked a few times. My problem was that I was too light for my height (135lbs @ 5'10"). My father suggested I start lifting weights in order to get stronger. This is how I started my journey in bodybuilding.
It's been more that 10 years since I lifted my first dumbbell - I am no longer practicing Martial Arts and bodybuilding has become my new passion. I am a Lifetime Natural Bodybuilder and it took me many years to fill out my frame due to my ectomorphic body type, but I am finally getting there... the hard work is finally paying off.
View My BodySpace Profile: bodyspace.bodybuilding.com/REMBUKAI.
What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?
I have tried almost everything in the book, but my best gains resulted when I started using more frequency between my body parts. I used to train with the traditional method of each body part every 7 days, but to be honest I didn't feel that I was making progress so I decided to train each muscle twice per week. I started growing again and haven't looked back since!
I really believe that frequency is a mayor player in muscular development. If you look around you will find athletes in all the sports with overdeveloped muscle parts because of the frequency they use when they train. Look at the legs of speed skaters, the calves of ballet dancers or football players, the arms and backs of gymnasts etc... and if you keep looking you will find a lot more examples around you. In addition, recently I learned that working out to failure every time is counterproductive for muscle growth when working frequently because you run the risk of overtraining your central nervous system.
In order to make a high frequency workout efficient I decrease my volume, avoid working to failure, use progression, and change my reps schemes in order to work my fast and slow muscle fibers and for instance prevent adaptation.
Currently I am using an Upper-Lower Split (this is just a sample):
Monday: Upper Body
Tuesday: Lower Body
Wednesday: Normally I rest or do cardio
Thursday: 2nd Upper Body
Friday: Lower Body
What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?
Nutrition is the difference between achieving your goals or not. If you have the perfect workout designed by the best coach and you don't take your nutrition seriously you are going to end nowhere period. I didn't know that when I started and I wasted many years of training. I believe that if you are persistent with your nutrition you won't be disappointed with your results, no matter what supplements are you taking or what workout are you doing.
For me I feel that high protein diets (1.5g per lb) works best accompanied with plenty of complex carbs and moderate fats. I made my best gains using that protocol. However I recently started working with Mr. Layne Norton and he advised me to lower my protein intake to 1.2 grams of protein per lb and increase my carb intake to almost 500 grams.
At first I was a little hesitant about making those changes but I didn't have nothing to loose. And let me tell you that I am pretty happy with the results so far. For instance the best nutrition plan is the plan that you are not using - Try new things, experiment with foods and eat plenty of calories and you won't be disappointed. Our body is an incredible machine that has the ability to adapt to almost everything, so mixing evrything up is a great idea to avoid plateaus.
I keep a lean diet year around during my off-season with one cheat meal per week. For proteins I eat Fish, Salmon, Steak, chicken and powdered protein. On the other hand my carbs sources are Rice, Oatmeal, Wheat pasta, Fruits, Veggies, and Honey. Finally for fats I eat Fish Oil, Peanut butter and Extra virgin Olive Oil.
My typical diet right now looks something like this:
Meal One (6:00 am) - Pro 38g, Carbs 80, Fats 14, Cals 590
Meal Two (9:00 am) - Pro 42g, Carbs 76, Fats 20, Cals 650
Meal Three (12:00 am) - Pro 48g, Carbs 72, Fats 14, Cals 520
Meal Four - Pre workout (4:00 pm) - Pro 36g, Carbs 72, Fats 8.5, Cals 505
Meal Five - Post workout (8:00 pm) - Pro 48g, Carbs 77, Fats 2, Cals 515
Meal Six (9:30pm) - Pro 38g, Carbs 76, Fats 20, Cals 670
What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?
I use the basic stuff. I use protein powders to complement my protein intake; I use Creatine, Beta-Alanine, Glutamine, BCAAs, Fish Oil, Glucosamine, Multivitamins and extra vitamin C and E.
Sample Supplement Plan:
I am following the protocol bellow:
Why do you love Bodybuilding?
I love bodybuilding because it is a constant and never ending challenge to myself. It makes me a better individual, more dedicated, patient and determined to achieve not only my goals in this sport but in life.
What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?
After my last contest I was determined to going back to the drawing table to put a plan together in order to come back next time bigger and in better condition than before. I decided that I was going to take the whole year off (2008) to slowly gain quality muscle. As a part of my plan I started working with Mr. Norton and with his help I am confident that 2009 will be a great year for me as far as achieving my personal goals. I am planning to start my contest prep in January 2009 and do a few shows in the Natural Bodybuilding Organizations. After that I don't know. I just hope that God gives me the strength and health to keep doing what I love to do most... Bodybuilding!
What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?
I love this saying:
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent."
Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?
I really look up to the Great natural champions out there; such as: Dave Goodin, Rob Hope, Jim Cordova, Nigel Davies, Komang Arnagua among others.
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