Amateur Bodybuilder Of The Week: Michael Survived The Gain Gauntlet!

Michael ditched college football to become a personal trainer and never regretted his decision. Check out the methods he used to build muscle consistently and win competitions!

How did your bodybuilding
journey begin?

My fitness journey began when I received my first weight set in junior high and weighed around 130 pounds with low body fat. I wanted to bigger, faster, and stronger for high school football. I trained daily and educated myself on fitness and nutrition as years went by. I increased my food intake and incorporated powerlifting exercises into my football training program.

By the end of high school, I weighed 160 pounds with 10 percent body fat. I received all-county honorable mention two years in a row and went on to play football at a local community college in 2002.

I decided to redshirt as a freshman, which led to many hours in the weightroom and big strength gains. I added 10 pounds of lean mass in one year and learned from teammates who had years of training experience.

"At the end of the night, my hard work paid off and then some when I took first in lightweight novice bodybuilding, unlimited bodybuilding, and overall novice lightweight."

Shortly after my freshman year, I decided to focus on school and became a personal trainer instead of playing college football. I opted for a degree in radiology but had to complete my general education classes and receive an associate science degree first.

Being a personal trainer was a perfect fit while in school. I took a couple years off from hardcore training while I completed the radiology program and graduated in May 2013. I started hitting the weights again with a plan and goal to get back on stage and bring the best package possible. I weighed 190 pounds with 15 percent body fat.

In February 2014, after four months of prep, I entered the NPC Gold Coast Classic Bodybuilding competition. I went into the competition with no expectations and weighed 161.5 pounds with 4.5 percent body fat. I was going to leave that night with much satisfaction knowing that I stuck to the plan and followed it through.

At the end of the night, my hard work paid off and then some when I took first in lightweight novice bodybuilding, unlimited bodybuilding, and overall novice lightweight. I took photos with the trophies and was interviewed by head judge and two-time Mr. USA, Tamer El Guindy. It was a great night and an overall humbling experience. Taking first place in the unlimited division made me a nationally qualified bodybuilder.

Cool Fact

Michael recently became an x-ray technician and uses the job knowledge to fortify his internal health!

What workout regimen delivered the best results?

My workout regimen remains mostly consistent year-round. The only changes I make are to increase the intensity during weight training and add fasted cardio in the early mornings when a contest gets closer. I work out seven days per week but only hit the weights six days per week.

Day 1: Chest/Triceps/Calves

Day 2: Back/Biceps/Abs

Day 3: Legs/Cardio

Day 4: Shoulders/Abs

Day 5: Arms/Calves

Day 6: Legs

Day 7: Cardio/Abs

Amateurs Of The Week honors amateurs across all categories for their hard work, dedication, and great physiques. Learn how our featured amateurs built their bodies and hit their goals!

What nutrition plan fueled your body?

The only changes to this meal plan came during the last four weeks of prep when I dropped yams from Meal 6. I eat a cheat meal every Sunday.

Meal 1
Meal 2
Meal 3
Meal 4
Meal 5: Post-Workout
Meal 6
Meal 7
Meal 8

What supplements gave you the greatest gains?

"My passion grew daily as I became more educated on how to transform the body."

How did your passion for bodybuilding emerge?

As a personal trainer for Gold's Gym, my passion for fitness began to emerge. I was surrounded by pictures of some of the greatest bodybuilders ever. My passion grew daily as I became more educated on how to transform the human body. I'm fascinated by the sight of muscle striations with minimal body fat.

What or who motivated you to be a bodybuilder?

My motivation to be a bodybuilder came on slow as I learned about the human body, nutrition, and different forms of training. I starting meeting others who competed and they encouraged me to compete. It was the only way to know how good I could be. My passion to improve and grow drives me to compete and bring the best package possible to the stage.

Where did you go for inspiration?

Finding inspiration can be hard because there are ups and downs to training and competitiveness. I use online sources like YouTube videos and Instagram for inspiration. I can always find great motivational quotes on Instagram for hard days.

"I will earn my pro card soon with the hopes to qualify for the big time and hit the Olympia stage."

What are your future bodybuilding plans?

My future plans are to hit the stage at the USA Bodybuilding Championships and aim for a pro card. I have much to improve on and about five months to do it, so hopefully I find a sponsor along the way. The plan is to improve on all aspects. Win or lose, making it to that point will be a success and I'm honored to compete at such a high level. I will earn my pro card soon with the hopes to qualify for the big time and hit the Olympia stage.

What is the most important bodybuilding tip?

Consistency is the key to success. When you make changes or adjustments, it's easier to figure out what works for your body. Only then can you ensure results. Stay true to yourself and your goals and don't let anyone say you can't do it.

Who is your favorite bodybuilder?

My favorite bodybuilder is James 'Flex" Lewis. We're about the same age and close to the same height. His training style and dedication to the sport is motivating. Flex is at the top of the 212 weight class and he got there with pure dedication and hard work.

How did help you reach your goals?

I can find anything I want to know about fitness on Finding BodySpace was very helpful and provided a meeting place for me to discuss fitness with like-minded people.

Michael's Top 5 Gym Tracks

  1. "Nobody" by Rick Ross (Feat. French Montana)
  2. "Don't Take Days Off" by Nipsy Hussle
  3. "Switching Lanes" by Tyga
  4. "Ambition" by Wale
  5. "No New Friends" by DJ Khaled
Contest History
  • 2013 - Muscle Beach - 7th Place
  • 2014 NPC Gold Coast Classic - 1st Place Lightweight Novice, Lightweight Unlimited, and Overall Novice

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