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BEFORE
BODY FAT 35%
WEIGHT 265 LBS

AFTER
BODY FAT 8%
WEIGHT 176 LBS

Ripped And Religious!

Rodney Angerbauer
over 40 transformation

Body Transformation: Ripped And Religious!

Rodney found consistency in prison to focus on training and God. See how he lost 89 pounds, got shredded, and built faith to compete at age 44!

Why I decided to transform

When I was young, I had problems dealing with emotions and staying focused. I bottled everything up, got into trouble frequently, and didn't know how to deal with it. I was angry and did anything I could to cover the pain. I had few friends because I was introverted and used marijuana and alcohol to deal with my emotions.

As I got older, I got into more trouble and bounced between parents. When I moved in with my father, he had a small weight set and I started doing curls and bench press. I thought people would leave me alone if I got bigger, but it didn't take long before I was one of the biggest guys in school and people wanted to fight in eighth grade.

At age 17, I benched 360 pounds and squatted 513 pounds until my knee gave out. I went to a doctor who wanted to open me up, which I didn't allow, so I quit squatting and focused on upper body exercises. I started drinking more and got a DUI at age 18. I moved out of my father's house, dropped out of high school, and it got worse.

I drank often and didn't know how to deal with my emotions. I went to bars before I was 21 years old, smoked pot, and did meth. I started selling drugs to pay for my habit and fell into addiction. I was arrested several times with drugs, guns, and money. In 1994, the courts had enough and wouldn't let me bail out.

Before /// 265 lbs
After /// 176 lbs
AGE 39 / HEIGHT 5'10" / BODY FAT 35%
AGE 44 / HEIGHT 5'10" / BODY FAT 8%
Post To Fitboard

I went to prison and entered an alternative incarceration program that was in a boot camp style. It took me nearly a year to graduate from a six-month program, but I learned about cognitive restructuring and how to change my thought processes. The boot camp program saved my life. Instead of running and gunning in the drug lifestyle, it taught me to use different ideas and change my core beliefs. I finally fought for my life in my own head.

When I was released from prison, I ran into old friends and started using meth again. After a year, I went into inpatient on my own and was released from treatment after 44 days to start my life again. Everything was going good. I stayed clean, joined a bench press team, enjoyed a few relationships, was a volunteer soccer coach for five years, and worked as a girls middle school soccer coach. Eventually, I told myself it was OK to drink because I went to prison for drugs, not alcohol. I quit lifting, worked full time and then some, but drank on weekends.

My marriage eventually fell apart, I got divorced, and my weight ballooned up to 265 pounds. Then I got drunk and was pulled over for DUI again. The next day police came over and said I caused an accident. I couldn't believe it and still don't know if I do. The witness said I didn't, but the timelines were close. After fighting it for a year and starting another relationship, I took a plea bargain for a suspended sentence and spent a couple of months in jail.

When I was released, my new lady made me a drink when I got home and I started again. Even three years hanging over my head didn't stop me. I didn't fit in anywhere and didn't know how to stop the cycle. I cursed God for my life and eventually got a third DUI. The court gave me three years plus 19 months for the new charges.

I went back to prison at age 39. There were only two options: go back to the way I was and fight or submit to God. I had never submitted to anyone or anything, but I started attending church services and bible studies in prison. Then I started to hit the weights. As I tried to learn how to give up control of my life to God, I started to read books and workout magazines. I had a bad shoulder, but didn't care. I did the pro workouts and hurt my shoulder so bad I ate Ibuprofen and Tylenol like candy.

Cool Fact

Rodney's high participation rate in church leadership activities drive his relentless effort in the gym to dominate on stage!

While I attended church and Bible study 4-6 days per week, I also got workout advice from an officer who taught me it's not the amount of weight you lift, but how you lift it. I started doing light weight with slow reps and focused on the muscle I was working. I worked out three days per week to let my body rest with two days of HIIT cardio and ate as good as possible. I discovered that concentrating on your muscle helps you work without destroying it. You can grow muscle and cut fat simultaneously and heal injuries by listening to the pain. I continued to grow closer to God and to set up a routine that I could use on the outside.

When I was released from prison, my wife had moved on (we divorced when I was inside), but God blessed me with a storage unit and part of a vending machine route I had before I went to prison. I moved into the only Christ-based recovery house in Albany, Oregon, that is open to people directly from prison. I went to church, worked out at the YMCA, and built my route up. I heard about a new gym called T's Strength Studio in Albany, and started going there. I talked with the owner (Tony), and we were on the same page with Christ and working out. Most of the CDs by the stereo were Christian and the gym was hardcore. He worked everything out with me and helped me financially.

While in prison, the head pastor of a church called The Shift came to meet us, so I started attending The Shift and talked with him and other pastors. I was headed in the right direction and peace came over my heart. I continued to attend Bible studies and church 3-4 days per week, alcohol and drug treatment a few days per week, worked some, and volunteered. The Shift was different. Several people were tatted, everyone was laid back, and nobody judged my past.

I also helped out at the recovery house I lived in (God Gear Inc.). Sometimes I went to Corvallis, Oregon, to work out with a close friend at Downing's Gym. After a month of working out, Tony mentioned bodybuilding competitions and I laughed initially, but he finally convinced me to try a competition at age 44.

I competed at the 2013 Oregon Ironman in novice middleweight and 50 and under masters. I took fourth place in novice and sixth place in masters. For my first show, and without consistent preparation, I was happy with the result. It was the leanest I've ever been and I loved the environment. I will be back next year.

How I accomplished my goals

I never gave up. I lifted in the rain with chains, looked at magazines that floated around, read books, listened, and tried new methods. I couldn't stand to look how I used to, which fueled me to drive on.

I didn't let excuses cross my lips. If my shoulder hurt, I worked legs. If my back hurt, I did leg press instead of squats. If my knee hurt, I worked upper body. Nothing stopped me from the end goal. Through it all, I prayed for strength.

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Supplements that helped me through the journey

With Meal 2

Diet plan that guided my transformation

Meal 1
Meal 2
Meal 3
Meal 4: Pre-workout
Meal 5: Post-workout
Meal 6

Training regimen that kept me on track

I focus on slow and controlled full reps; feel the muscle, not the weight. I do 30 minutes of HIIT cardio twice per week on rest days.

Monday: Full Body
Wednesday: Full Body
Friday: Full Body

What aspect challenged me the most

Dieting is the most challenging and important aspect. I didn't eat enough at first and it cost me. I wanted immediate results and went through the motions without failure as an option. I don't compete with others; I compete with myself and what I did yesterday. I've had injuries that didn't start from lifting, but impacted my training.

My future fitness plans

I'm constantly learning about the human body and how it reacts. I plan to compete again next year when I build more mass in my legs, traps, and lats. I will practice posing too. I want to become a certified trainer to help people the right way.

Suggestions for aspiring transformers

  • Never give up or surrender.
  • When you feel like giving up, pray for strength to finish.
  • Take before photos to look at when you want to cheat your diet.
  • Don't just push weight; feel it.
  • Use common sense and read a lot.
  • Find what works for you, not someone else.

How Bodybuilding.com helped me reach my goals

I use BodySpace to track my progress. As I got closer to my show, I used the countdown and calendar to track my progress. I read many articles for new ideas to modify workouts. I'm on a muscle-building diet and use Jim Stoppani's Shortcut To Size. The videos with nutrition with supplement stacks are great help.

Rodney's Top 5 Gym Tracks

  1. "Bring Me Down" by Pillar
  2. "Holding On" by Pillar
  3. "Inhuman" by Thousand Foot Krutch
  4. "Falls Apart" by Thousand Foot Krutch
  5. "My Own Enemy" by Thousand Foot Krutch

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Comments

Showing 1 - 25 of 70 Comments

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3hallzoo

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3hallzoo

Wow, awesome transformation, both physically and spiritually.. Well done!

Sep 12, 2013 6:36pm | report
 
RyanWizdum

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RyanWizdum

One of my favorite transformation articles so far. Awesome job, keep it up. God is always so good!

Sep 12, 2013 6:44pm | report
 
Diab0lic

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Diab0lic

Strong story brah. Mean transformation on all counts though!

Sep 12, 2013 9:25pm | report
 
  • Body Stats
  • ht: 5'10"
  • wt: 209.44 lbs
  • bf: 10.0%
godschild23149

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godschild23149

With God all things are possible and you're another great example... Keep lifting and praying, bruh..

Sep 12, 2013 9:36pm | report
 
GTJoeyG

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GTJoeyG

Amazing story man. I just started lifting at Downing's Gym in Corvallis. I come on this site all the time to check out new transformations and it's crazy that you're so close by!

Sep 13, 2013 1:04am | report
 
rangerbauer

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rangerbauer

Thanks! Tell Pete Hi!

Sep 16, 2013 9:53am | report
angel87a

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angel87a

Very inspiring! Way to go Rodney!

Sep 13, 2013 5:40am | report
 
rangerbauer

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rangerbauer

Thank you!

Sep 16, 2013 9:54am | report
murthym

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murthym

Thanks for being bold and sharing how God has changed your life and brought you through!! He's great at taking the worst failures and making them successes. Keep up the great work and NEVER GIVE UP!!

Sep 13, 2013 6:50am | report
 
racks11479

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racks11479

Amazing story brother! Thank you for the inspiration!

Sep 13, 2013 7:11am | report
 
23Banks

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23Banks

Good job bro! Amazing transformation.

Sep 13, 2013 7:41am | report
 
Lift4Joy

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Lift4Joy

"I finally fought for my life in my own head." I love that line--it shows a spark of hope that started the fire of change! Really motivating to see the way God transformed your life!! :) Way to go! (And AWESOME MUSIC btw!!)

Sep 13, 2013 8:15am | report
 
beeker287

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beeker287

Great transformation! Awesome job, keep up the great work.

Sep 13, 2013 8:31am | report
 
Vikingissimo

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Vikingissimo

I would never believe there is still so many religious people around. It seems so old fashion to blame god for own errors.. Anyways, good job losing weight.

Sep 13, 2013 8:39am | report
 
  • Body Stats
  • ht: 5'11"
  • wt: 187.39 lbs
  • bf: 10.0%
CPAfitdad

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CPAfitdad

No need to dig him. The last sentence is all you needed. However, he does it to change his life is his choice and not yours.

Sep 13, 2013 10:17am | report
Saltus

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Saltus

If you read it all the way, you would see he realized his errors were his own fault when he came to God.
If you want to be a heathen that's fine but don't bash on someone who is living his life right.

Sep 13, 2013 7:23pm | report
IanG316

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IanG316

Great job man. That is awesome that you speak up for God. And great songs.

Sep 13, 2013 9:19am | report
 
Vic1123

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Vic1123

Anything is possible! Amazing story, best of luck to you!

Sep 13, 2013 9:31am | report
 
jrabelo86

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jrabelo86

Some people , when in rock bottom, need this kind of "outside" support to make the necessary changes in life. If religion did it to him, more power to him. Great transformation.

Sep 13, 2013 11:14am | report
 
Saltus

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Saltus

It wasn't religion, it was God.

Sep 13, 2013 7:25pm | report
jrabelo86

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jrabelo86

So, yeah, religion.

Sep 15, 2013 10:56am | report
rangerbauer

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rangerbauer

There is a difference between religion and God. Following the bible and Christ is one thing, but religion is more of what certain churches put together. Religion can be anything, even satan has a religion.
Whoever edited the interview didn't know the difference or they wouldn't have put Religious in the title. I am far from that.
I follow Christ, not all the rules that churches and religions put on people that aren't backed by the bible.

Just an explanation, I appreciate your input.

Sep 16, 2013 9:59am | report
RelaxImJoking

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RelaxImJoking

Jrabelo, sometimes its better in these situations to just say something positive, otherwise you get those who belive what they understand and those who understand what they believe to turn in a message with good intent into a debate.

Sep 16, 2013 2:13pm | report
jrabelo86

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jrabelo86

Yeah, you are right, this kind of debate here is pointless. Like i said, the important thing is that he found the strength to make a necessary change in his life. That's, in my opinion, what needs to be absorbed from the story, not the 'God' or 'religion' part.

Sep 16, 2013 4:45pm | report
Kcantando

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Kcantando

Amazing story - my journey has been similar to your's Rodney. Had to be broken before I was redeemed by Jesus Christ. Romans 8:37

Article Rated:
Sep 13, 2013 11:52am | report
 
Showing 1 - 25 of 70 Comments

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