Layne Norton's Pursuit To Become A Natural Pro Journal.

I made it my goal to become a professional natural bodybuilder one day. Four and a half years later, I feel I've made the necessary strides... Learn more about me and see how am I preparing for competition.
Part 1 | Part 2
I competed in my first natural bodybuilding show in 2001, when I was 19 years old. My only goal was not to get laughed off the stage at that show.

As it happened, I did better than I could've ever dreamed. I won the teenage and novice tall classes at the 2001 INBF Mid America Muscle Classic, and from that moment on I was hooked!

What Does INBF Stand For?
International Natural Bodybuilding Federation. Click here to visit their website.

Let The Countdown Begin: 20 Week Contest Prep! Let The Countdown Begin: 20 Week Contest Prep!
I have decided to start cutting at approximately 22 weeks out this year and only lose 1- 1.5 lbs per week. I want to leave nothing to chance...
[ Click here to learn more. ]

I made it my goal to become a professional natural bodybuilder one day. Four and a half years later, I feel I've made the necessary strides to take a serious crack at becoming a natural pro bodybuilder. Two years ago, I came close to qualifying as a natural pro and since then I've put on about ten more pounds of muscle and drastically improved my legs, a major weak point at all of my previous shows.

In order to qualify as a natural pro, it will require that I win an overall at a designated pro qualifier show. Thus far, I have chosen three shows this spring that are pro qualifiers:

  • The OCB Spirit of America on 4/29/2006, a pro qualifier for the IFPA.

  • The OCB Great Lakes Natural on 5/6/2006, also a pro qualifier for the IFPA.

  • The NGA Heart of America Natural Classic on 5/13/2006, a pro qualifier for the NGA.

What Do OCB, IFPA, & NGA Stand For?
OCB = Organization of Competitive Bodybuilders. Click here to visit their website.
IFPA = International Fitness & Physique Association. Click here to visit their website.
NGA = National Gym Association, Inc. Click here to visit their website.

I will also be competing in the NANBF Mr./Ms. Natural Minnesota Body Building/Figure & Xtreme Fit Championships on 6/10/2006. While it is not a pro qualifier, I will be doing the show in order to compete alongside my best friend, Carl DuCharme, with whom I haven't yet had the chance to compete.

What Does NANBF Stand For?
North American Natural Bodybuilding Federation. Click here to visit their website.

After my 2004 competitive season, I took two years off to improve my weak points and work on other areas of my life. I graduated from Eckerd College in May of 2004 with my B.S. in Biochemistry, and was accepted into the Ph.D. nutritional science program at the University of Illinois where I am currently working on my thesis in the area of amino acid metabolism and protein synthesis; I have even been first author on a peer review journal article on the topic of leucine, in The Journal of Nutrition.

Leucine: The Anabolic Trigger! Leucine: The Anabolic Trigger!
It has been shown that in order for protein balance to become positive post workout, dietary protein, specifically the amino acid leucine, must be consumed. Learn how that happens right here.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

I was also fortunate enough to be featured in a bodybuilding DVD from USA Muscle, entitled "Prime Cuts Volume One" along with several other up-and-coming bodybuilders.

It was a great experience in which I was honored to participate. View two teaser clips from my section of the video here:

Additionally, I have also appeared in or had articles accepted for the following magazines:

Needless to say, the past two years have been very exciting for me!

Keeping Busy

When I first started bodybuilding, I would never have dreamed of half of this level of success. To have my articles featured in magazines I used to flip through and read when I first started is an unreal feeling. I've even signed a few autographs in the past year, which I must say is the ultimate compliment!

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I Never Dreamed I Would Reach This Level.

As if things weren't going well enough already, I also came into contact with Katie and Marc Lobliner, the owners of SciVation and PrimaForce. In addition to providing a sponsorship for me, they have become close friends of mine and I have been honored to work alongside them at the 2004 and 2005 Olympia expos and the 2005 and 2006 Arnold Classic Expos.

Click Image To Enlarge.
Isabel Lago & Layne Norton, Katie & Marc Lobiner,
& Derek "Beast" Charlebois At The
2005 Olympia SciVation/Primaforce Booth.

Marc and Katie are two of the finest people that one could ever hope to meet, and they truly believe in their products and work hard to be fair and honest with customers, something that is rare in this industry.

Marc & Katie Lobliner's Amazing Transformation Interview! Marc & Katie Lobliner's Amazing Transformation Interview!
This is an interview with Marc about how he and his wife, Katie, began and continued the journey of healthy living. Read about their experiences and how they got to this point.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

And, if all this wasn't enough, I also started my own website, The purpose of Physique Science is several fold:

  1. To provide people with accurate information that pertains to bodybuilding and fitness.
  2. To promote natural bodybuilding and natural bodybuilders.
  3. To provide people with more information about me.

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Layne Norton.

In the future, I hope to create another site that will just be for things pertaining to my bodybuilding career, but at this point Physique Science will contain all of these things. Physique Science still has a lot of work that needs to be done to it, but thus far I am very pleased with it and the feedback has been very positive.

None of these things, however, can compare to meeting my girlfriend, Isabel Lago. She has meant so much to me over the past two years and sacrificed so much to help me. Last year, she moved from Florida to Illinois to be with me at graduate school.

Layne & Isabel
Click Image To Enlarge.
Layne & Isabel.

She is my number one fan, my training partner, my life partner, and my strength. Without her, I would not have been near this successful over the past two years.

Click to read Layne's blog
Click Image To Read Layne's Blog.
Layne's Website: Physique Science.

Back To Business

Now to the business at hand: I am currently 6 weeks out from my first show, the OCB Spirit of America. This show is going to be very tough.

There will nearly 100 competitors at this show, and there will most likely be some people competing who are already professionals in other natural bodybuilding organizations so I will need to bring my "A" game in order to take the overall.

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I Will Need To Bring My "A" Game.

I am not concerned with coming in at any particular weight or trying to make it into any particular class since I need to win the overall to turn professional; I need to be the best bodybuilder onstage, regardless of what class I'm in.

I am currently weighing in at 197 lbs upon waking in the morning and am usually around 200 lbs at night. Caliper readings place me at 3.0% body fat. Calipers however, always measure around 2-4% lower than what one's actual body fat is, so I figure I can still lose another 1-2% body fat. This should put my competition weight anywhere from 193-195 lbs.

Right now my diet is centered around partitioning my calories depending upon what body part I am working out on that day.

Therefore, I consume the most calories on days I work out weak points, and less calories on days I work out strong points. Currently my diet breaks down like this:

Layne Norton's Cutting Diet.
Day Of Week Workout Focus Protein/Carbs/Fats
1 Upper Body 275/165/50 g
2 Lower Body 250/450/50 g
3 Rest & Cardio 275/125/50 g
4 Chest, Shoulders, & Biceps 275/125/50 g
5 Back & Triceps 275/150/50 g
6 Lower Body 250/450/50 g
7 Rest & Cardio 275/125/50 g

For those who may not be familiar with my contest prep procedures, you can find a general outline of how I prepare for a contest, here.

A Unique Combination Of Science And Experience Based Pre-Contest Advice A Unique Combination Of Science & Experience-Based Pre-Contest Advice.
This article will provide competitors information on diet, training, tanning, posing, and other competition related topics.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

Please stay tuned for updates, the best is yet to come!

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to email me. Due to the large volume of mail I receive on a daily basis, please try to make your questions as targeted and detailed as possible to help me answer as quickly as possible. Thanks!



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Part 1 | Part 2