Chad Jackson Wins 2012 Dymatize Elite Ambition Challenge!

Chad walked a long road to win the 2012 Elite Ambition Challenge. Grueling, worth it. Now, he can enjoy the fruits of his victory, including being ripped!

How I Did It

I am a father of five kids, and I love watching their activities, especially soccer. I played the game competitively through college, so my kids are continuing a family tradition.

My connection to the game runs even deeper. I spent three years working as the chaplain for a Major League Soccer team. I took the job with no experience, but sometimes God just wants a willing heart to reach people—no matter the resume. Along the way, I made great friendships with some of the players, and I still talk with many of them today.

I work in the healthcare industry now, but I haven't always been the epitome of health. That changed this year when my dad's health issues forced me to reflect on what's important in my own life. I decided to get my wellness squared away for my kids' sake. I want to be there as they
grow up.

Congratulations on winning the Dymatize Elite Challenge! What inspired you to enter the challenge?

Chad: Thank you so much. I was shocked when I found out I won the challenge. This challenge was great for me because I'm a natural competitor and like to compete on the field or in the business world. My inspiration came from knowing my "why." When you know the reason you're doing something, your life instantly changes.

I had three "whys" for this contest:

  1. I knew I needed to get into better physical shape. My dad has been going through health issues for more than six years. I knew my health would follow the same path unless I started taking care of myself. I let myself go physically and didn't work out for more than two years. My waistline expanded and I was having health issues. I weighed more than 219 pounds.
  2. I wanted to hike Pikes Peak with my 16-year-old son on our vacation. I knew I couldn't do it in that condition. I needed to lose weight and get into shape to hike a 14,000-foot mountain.
  3. My son scored his license this summer, and I thought it would be great if I could win that $10,000 to get him a car and put a down payment on a new one for my wife. The Dymatize Elite Ambition Challenge lined up perfectly with my "whys." I knew if my "whys" were strong enough, the "what" and "how" would be easier.
How surprised are you at the extent of your transformation?

Looking back at the 12 weeks and seeing where I am today is pretty cool. I really thought it would take me longer than 12 weeks to see the results I have. It's interesting how you don't see the changes immediately, especially the first few weeks. But if you stick with your diet, supplementation, and workout plan, you can make some big changes if you're consistent.

I had to buy new clothes and stop buying those stretchy-waistband dress pants, where my waistline expanded and contracted depending on how much I ate. The other benefit was that my lower back stopped hurting and people started to notice my transformation.

You obviously stayed motivated throughout the contest. Have any noteworthy or unique tips for our readers?

Challenge yourself and focus on the win, not the loss. Many people focus on what they will lose instead of what they will gain. During the contest, I focused on obtaining good health and how good I would look and feel.

I also think it's important to form a plan and stick with it. You need to have the right information in order to formulate a plan. That's what's so great about There are so many great articles on workouts, diet plans, and mental focus. Community and accountability is also very important during the journey. When I say "community," I mean staying connected. The community aspect of let me stay motivated by staying in touch with those who have already gone on the journey.

Posting before-and-after photos keeps you accountable and lets everyone know, including yourself, that you're serious about making changes. When you plan to cook your food, work out, and take supplements, the small changes add up to big changes after 12 weeks and beyond.

Were there any moments you wanted to give up? If so, how did you push through them and continue training?

I was on a business trip and truly felt like quitting during the third week. I didn't see any real changes and asked myself, "Is this worth it?" You have to continuously remind yourself of "why" you're doing this. The first few weeks are a dangerous period because habits haven't been formed yet.

You look in the mirror and don't see a real change in your body. You push through by planning ahead of time, sticking with the plan, and reminding yourself why you're doing this. There were also people on who helped me with words of encouragement. It's important to stay connected with people who have your same goals or who have achieved the goals you want to achieve.

What was the single hardest aspect of your transformation?

The single hardest aspect during the transformation was "life" happening. My dad had open heart surgery during the last week of the contest. It was tough during that week to get in the workouts and keep my diet in check. I adapted my schedule and didn't sleep much that week. It was an emotionally and physically draining experience, but the workouts helped relieve some of the emotions I was going through.

I also had to work around a shoulder injury I sustained during the transformation. I could've easily made up an excuse and quit the contest, but I decided to work around the shoulder injury.

Have any helpful tips for readers who might be struggling with the same issue?

Just know that life will happen. Things don't always line up the way you plan, and you have to be flexible and adapt. I truly believe those who can adapt to whatever life throws at them will get stronger after going through difficulties and trials. It's part of the journey.

One verse in the Bible that really helps me when I am going through a storm is James 1:1-3. It reads: "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance."

A lot of people are going to read this and think, "Nah, I couldn't do this. Not me." Tell them why they're dead wrong.

If you know why you are doing this, anyone can make tremendous progress over 12 weeks. Simple daily rituals equal the compound effect of changes to your body. It's pretty amazing how the body can change if you have the right workout, diet, and supplement plan.

Now that you've tackled this fitness goal, what's next? Want to get shredded like cheese, ripped like paper, or climb Mount Olympus? Fight pirates? Build a fitness career, perhaps?

I would like to continue improving my physique and play soccer again. I am now down to my college weight. I really want to help people accomplish what I've accomplished. I'm going to help one of my employees with his transformation. I can't wait to put a plan together for him and see the results.

Chad's Fitness Regimen

Personal Nutrition Philosophy ///

You need a meal plan before the week begins, and you have to prepare those meals before the week starts. I would do my shopping, cook meats, and freeze my food into meal-sized portions on Sunday nights.

I would eat six times per day, every two or three hours. The main staples in my diet were lean protein (chicken breasts, whole eggs, egg whites, and white albacore tuna), a vegetable (broccoli, spinach, and green beans), and a starch (brown rice, sweet potatoes, and oatmeal/steel oats).

Not being afraid to eat fats helped me maintain. My main fat sources were almonds, almond butter, natural peanut butter, and avocado. I had a starch food during the first four weeks. During weeks 5-12, I didn't have many starchy foods until the 18th meal of the week, based on Derek Charlebois' Cut Diet.

Meal 1
Meal 2
Meal 3
Meal 4
Meal 5
Meal 6
Meal 6: High Carb Replacement Meal

Chad's Training Regimen

Personal Training Philosophy ///

Since I have five children and a busy job, I knocked out my workouts early. I rose every morning at 4:45 a.m. to train five times per week. I warmed up on the stationary bike for 20 minutes to get the blood flowing and my joints working. I did 40-50 minutes of resistance training session with weights.

I did different exercises every other week to keep my body from adapting. I varied the reps from 6-15. I would pyramid up for four weeks and pyramid down for four weeks. I did an extra cardio session of 40 minutes of "slow go" cardio on the stationary bike during the last four weeks.

I credit my workout to Derek Charlebois who posted his Tri-Phase training on the forums. I alternate between Workout A and Workout B each week, varying repetitions.

Day 1: Chest/Abs

Day 2: Back

Day 3: Delts/Traps

Day 4: Arms/Calves

Day 5: Cardio
Day 6: Legs

Day 7: Rest

Chad's Supplement Plan

Personal Supplement Philosophy ///

I knew in order to make drastic changes in a short time I had to use supplements in my diet. I also knew there were times when I wouldn't have time to eat a big meal and needed to substitute whole food with a protein shake.

What I Use (And Why) ///

I supplemented mostly with protein, but did have other supplements that helped me in my transition. My pre-workout was important. Waking up at 4:45 a.m. wasn't normal for me. To get an intense workout, I used Dymatize Xpand Xtreme Pump. I didn't have much of an appetite before my workout, so I consumed Dymatize Elite Recoup BCAA during my workout.

I had a busy schedule during the day going from meeting to meeting, so I usually took Dymatize Iso-100 Whey Protein Isolate at work. I took EFAs at every meal. I think they helped my joints and helped me cut body fat. Before going to bed, I usually had a Dymatize Elite Casein drink for a slow-acting protein.

Morning: Pre-Workout
During Workout
With All Meals
With Meal 2
With Meal 4
With Meal 6: Before Bed

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