Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Venus Nguyen

Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Venus Nguyen! - Pics and info and more!

How Did You Get Started?

I grew up crawling on the gym floor. My mother and father where both competitive bodybuilders in the early 80's (my mother took the Emerald Cup Overall Title in 1985!). After competing in my youth as a gymnast and a having a successful high school and collegiate career as a runner, I turned to fitness as an outlet to continue competing and following the tradition of my parents.

Venus Nguyen.
+ Click To Enlarge.
Venus Nguyen.

What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?

Since there are many phases of training and dieting here is an example of my training week during the Building and Sculpting Phase (off season):

TERMS YOU'LL NEED TO KNOW
Failure - That point in an exercise at which you have so fully fatigued your working muscles that they can no longer complete an additional repetition of a movement with strict biomechanics. You should always take your post-warm-up sets at least to the point of momentary muscular failure, and frequently past that point.
Superset - Two exercises are performed consecutively without any rest.


Sunday


  • Long Run (8-10 Miles) And Shadow Boxing


Monday - Chest And Biceps


    Warm Up:
  • 1 Min Arm Bike (Moderate Resistance)
  • 1 Min Row Machine

  • Flat Barbell Bench Press:
    • Warm Up Sets: 3 Sets Of 15, 10, Then 8 Reps Adding Weight Each Set
    • Building Sets: 3 Sets Of 6 Reps Heavy Weight
    • Burnout Set: 1 Set To Failure At Warm Up Weight
  • Superset:
  • Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps
    Incline Dumbbell Flyes: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps

  • Superset:
  • Cable Flyes: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps
    Push Ups: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps

  • Superset:
  • EZ Bar Narrow Bicep Curls Or Incline Dumbbell Curls: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps
    Concentration Curls: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps

  • Followed With 15 Minutes Of Light Boxing, Crunches And Stretching.
    Note: When lifting heavy I take at least 2 min breaks between sets and always increase my weight slowly through the warm up into my building sets. This helps with preparing the muscles to lift heavy weights and prevents injury.


    Tuesday - Legs (Front), Choreography & Routine Work


    • 1 Hour Of Routine Work - Choreography And Fitness Mandatory Moves Drills.

    • Warm Up:
    • 1 Mile Jog
    • Ballistic Leg Stretches

  • Squats:
    • Warm Up Sets: 3-4 Sets Gradually Adding Weight And Decreasing The Reps
    • Building Sets: 3 Sets Of 6 Reps Heavy Weight
    • Burnout Set: 1 Set To Failure At Warm Up Weight
  • Superset:
  • Front Squats: 4 Sets Of 10 Reps
    Box Jumps: 4 Sets Of 10 Reps

  • Superset:
  • Leg Extension: 3 Sets 10 Reps (Left, Right, Then Both Legs)
    Recumbent Bike: 3 Sets Of 2 Minutes

  • Follow With Spin Class And Stretching
    Plyometric Box Jumps, Step 1 Plyometric Box Jumps, Step 2 Plyometric Box Jumps, Step 3
    Click Image To Enlarge.
    Box Jumps.

    Video GuidesMPEG - Windows Media - Real Player


    Wednesday - Back And Triceps


  • Superset:
  • Lat Pull Downs: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set
    Kneeling Triceps Extension: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set

  • Superset:
  • Seated Cable Row: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set
    Dumbbell Tricep Extension: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set

  • Superset:
  • Cable Triceps Extension: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set
    Dips: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps Add Weight Each Set

  • Follow By Boxing - Sparing And Mat Work


    Thursday - Shoulders, Choreography & Routine Work


    • 2 Hours Of Routine Work - Choreography, Gymnastics, Stretching And Fitness Mandatory Moves Drills.
    • Warm Up:
    • Arm Bike 10 Mins (Moderate Resistance)

  • Dumbbell Military Press:
    • Warm Up Sets: 3-4 Sets Gradually Adding Weight And Decreasing The Reps
    • Building Sets: 3 Sets At Heavy Weight 6 Or Less Reps
    • Burnout Set: 1 Set To Failure At Warm Up Weight
  • Superset:
  • Reverse Flyes: 4 Sets Of 10-12 Reps
    Lateral Raises: 4 Sets Of 10-12 Reps
  • Superset:
  • Barbell Push Press: 4 Sets Of 10-12 Reps
    Single Arm Cable Lateral Raises: 4 Sets Of 10-12 Reps


    Friday - Legs


      Warm Up:
    • 1 Mile Jog
    • Ballistic Leg Stretches

  • Squats:
    • Warm Up Sets: 3-4 Sets Gradually Adding Weight And Decreasing The Reps
    • Building Sets: 3 Sets Of 6 Reps Heavy Weight
    • Burnout Set: 1 Set To Failure At Warm Up Weight
  • Superset:
  • Deadlifts: 4 Sets Of 6-10 Reps
    Leg Press: 4 Sets Of 10-15 Reps

  • Superset:
  • Prone Hamstring Curls: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps
    Good Mornings: 4 Sets Of 8-12 Reps

  • Superset:
  • Weighted Walking Lunges: 4 Sets Of 20 Reps
    Row Machine: 4 Sets For 2 Mins High Intensity

  • Follow With 45 Mins Shadowboxing And Stretching


    Saturday - Cardio & Routine Work


      Track Interval Workout (1 Hour Total):
    • 1 Mile Warm Up
    • 300m/200m/100m Cardio Dash:
      • Run 300 Meters
      • Push Ups: 1 Set Of 20 Reps
      • Run 200 Meters
      • Push Ups: 1 Set Of 10 Reps
      • Run 100 Meters
      • Push Ups: 1 Set Of 5 Reps
      • Walk 200 Meters
      • Rest

      • Repeat 3 (Or 4) times replacing Push Ups with Squats and Lunges (4th Set Repeat Squats).
    • 1 Mile Cool Down
    • Boxing Class (1 Hour)
    • Choreography And Stretching

    Venus Nguyen.
    + Click To Enlarge.
    Venus Nguyen.

    What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?

    Once again - there are many stages of training and dieting to prepare for a fitness/bodybuilding or figure competition. Here is an example of one of meal plans during my 15 week diet down.


    Breakfast:



    AM Snacks (One Choice Eaten Every Few Hours):



    Lunch:



    PM Snacks (One Choice Eaten Every Few Hours):



    Dinner:



    Dessert (Chose One):


    Note: When dieting down I always make sure that I start early. Nothing is worse than having to stress about being "under-conditioned" on stage. I eat small amounts of "clean" (nearly fat free) foods all day long and always keep my calorie intake OVER 1200 calories. I re-evaluate my progress every 3 weeks and make decisions whether to cut or add more calories, fats, proteins, carbs, & sodium depending on my progress, the date of the show and the look that I am planning of having on stage.

    Venus Nguyen.
    + Click To Enlarge.
    Venus Nguyen.

    What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?

    The supplements that I use vary on the stage of training and diet I am on. Here are some of my favorites.


    Building:



    Dieting:



    Everyday Use:


    Why do you love Bodybuilding?

    I love fitness because it combines all the beauty and strength of bodybuilding and figure while showcasing it to our audience (especially those that might want to compete) in a way that makes it less intimating than mandatory posing and more dynamic than quarter turns. Fitness brings vibrant personality and energy to the audience and shows them that all bodybuilders, fitness and figure competitors aren't just people who only eat canned tuna, pump iron, ride for hours on the stationary bike and drink protein shakes -- but that we drawn on our past experiences doing other sports and activities to become the symmetrical, low body fat athletes that compete in our sport today.

    What Motivates You To Follow A Healthy Lifestyle?

    After making the decision to be part of this sport, I have slowly transitioned my life to give me the best chance to be competitive and successful at the highest level. Since I became a coach, physique sculptor, diet designer and educator there is no secret about the life that I lead and what I expect out of myself. I am committed to the "Practice what you preach" attitude. I let my family, my clients and my students know about my goals and let them hold me accountable for a healthy lifestyle. Through the eyes of others I constantly strive to be a role model, an inspiration, a mentor and a resource of our ever-changing health and fitness industry.

    What Made You Want To Achieve Your Goals?

    I have had the great honor of being coached - motivated and educated - by many amazing people throughout my entire life. Every time that I perform on stage I represent all the time, energy and passion that each one of them gave to me. I never neglect to remember the people that have got me to this point in my fitness career and I know that I owe it to them to be successful as an athlete and a role model. The realization of my goals will be the end result of the knowledge, drive and motivation of these wonderful people that have rallied around me since my youth (lead by my mother and father) and this is most important thing that pushes me to succeed.

    What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

    After spending the past few years getting ready, with the tradition, dedication and guidance of my family, I will compete this year for my IFBB pro card. With that and my career as a youth gymnastics coach and exercise program/diet designer, I will use it to instruct and motivate youth and their parents to lead active and healthy lifestyles -- to be role models for each other and their communities -- in a society that is becoming more and more sedentary and uninspired.

    Venus Nguyen.
    + Click To Enlarge.
    Venus Nguyen.

    What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?

    One tip that I would give other fitness competitors is to surround yourself with a great team! Fitness is a lot to take on by yourself and can get very overwhelming! Find a group of people that excel at what they do and listen to them! Posing coach, diet designer, suit maker, choreographer, music guy, trainer -- let their experiences help you to be your best! Don't underestimate needing the support of family, friends and your team -- they want you to succeed as much as you do -- and in this sport, the more people in your corner the better!

    Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?

    Jen Hendershott, Adela Garcia, Kelly Ryan, and Mindy O'Brien.

    What Features Do You Use On Bodybuilding.com?

    Bodybuilding.com has been a wonderful resource for me from the very moment that I chose to pursue my dream of being in the world of fitness. Starting from when I read a "motivation" article about changing your occupation from one you hate to one you love. Then from researching on the "competitions" main page about upcoming shows in my area for me to go watch and learn. I constantly read up on different products reviewed on the "Product FAQ" and enjoy using my "BodySpace" profile to connect and post photos.

    I love purchasing my supplements and precontest prep items (Bikini Bite, Tanners, etc.) because of the reasonable prices, the fast, accurate shipping and the thousands of product options. And I especially enjoy all the contest coverage (photos, reviews, web casts) that keeps me in touch with all the buzz in the bodybuilding community.