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It's very interesting in the IFBB these days... New rules that are totally against our constitution, Lee Priest retiring for no apparent reason and athletes not entering the Olympia even though they qualified. With all that being said, lets move onto some really good questions.
E-mail me your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What do you think about Lee Priest announcing he's going to retire?
Quite honestly, I could care less. He's never placed ahead of me in a show so his retirement does not affect my money what so ever. However, I'd be willing to bet that there are quite a few gentlemen very happy to hear they're going to move up the ladder of bodybuilding since Mr. Priest is going to hang up his lifting belt. One thing for sure, he will be missed by many fans. Personally I don't think he's going anywhere. His announcement may be a ploy for some more press.
I have to say my eyes have been opened concerning steroid use in professional sports from your column. My question is how much of a boost are steroids to professional bodybuilders?
Fact is, if a man is a professional bodybuilder, he uses steroids. However, every aspect of his training has to be synergistic with the other for the juice to work. His training has to be intense and consistent. His sleep habits have to be to the point where at least 10 hours of his day is sleep. Nutrition has to be designed to build muscle by taking in enough protein to build fiber. Last but not least, the steroids he uses have to be real and of good quality. If one of these aspects of training falls short of perfect then the steroids mean nothing.
Other than his recent car accident, what is keeping Mat DuVall from getting his pro card?
I've seen Mat compete several times over the years. Frankly I think Mat turned pro at last year's Nationals in Dallas. He was hard and full as a result of working with Chad Nicholls and it was probably the best he's ever looked. I really don't understand why the judges haven't seen him fit to turn pro. Yes, Toney Freeman looked great but I just thought that Matt had the extra muscle to get the nod from the officials. If I've heard correctly, DuVall will be entering the Nationals in Florida come this November where I think he'll get his pro card.
I need to know how to get rid of the big belly syndrome?
The one factor that ties bodybuilders together when it comes to huge stomachs is the amount of calories they consume in one sitting. Over eating makes a bodybuilder look like he's pregnant, that's a fact. My advice is to eat less per meal but just simply eat more meals to make sure you get the amount of calories you need to build muscle. Instead of dividing 400 grams of protein into 5 or 6 meals, break it down into 7 or 8 meals. Your stomach will drastically change for the better. Also, try replacing the protein source in a few of your meals with seafood, shrimp, fish or even tuna. Try it, I know it will work.
I am 18 years old and I have been bodybuilding and eating right for three years. I have taken various supplements and I haven't grown height wise in like two years. My gains now are almost none. I am considering starting steroids, but should I wait until I'm 21?
This one is really easy to answer. Yes, wait until you are at least 21 years old, period. Keep training steroid free right now and if you're not getting any more gains then you're not training hard enough. Train hard, sleep ten hours a day and make sure you supplement your diet to build muscle. Make sure you're using a good Whey protein, BCAA's, Glutamine and Creatine. All these supplements aid in building muscle. Remember, it's a time game and it's going to take time. By the time you're 21 you should know if you would like to be a pro or not.
Hey, first off, I wanna say I think your column is great. You've really brought a lot of new perspectives to the world of bodybuilding. I have a few questions. What do you think of GNC's weight gainers? What do you think of Mike Matarazzo and his chances of moving up in the ranks?
First off, I've never even see the label on a jug of GNC's weight gainer but I would bet it's full of sugar. I'd rather not discuss my thought on their gainer but rather suggest one that I think is good. ISS has a great mass building product out that quite a few pros are currently using. Check it out here.
Mike Matarazzo... unfortunately Mike has seen his better days and is on his way out of competitive bodybuilding. Matarazzo was a huge crowd draw a while ago but time has caught up to him and now it's time to retire.
You seem to down play the legitimacy of the big mags, i.e. Flex. It seems like you have some sort of animosity towards it, what's up?
Oh no, I love Flex magazine and all the great training articles. The only problem is the articles are from the same guys over and over and over and over again! For example, on the most recent Flex, Kevin Levrone is on the cover, again! He's already been on like three covers in the last 12 months... old. In the most recent Flex there's another training article on Jay Cutler, again. Jay is in almost every edition... old! Real simply, Kevin, Shawn, Jay, Gunter, Ronnie. Now repeat that 100 times and you'll see why I'm sick of Flex magazine!
My question is a little controversial. Is it true that judges write their scores in pencil so they can be urged to change them by the Weiders? What are the politics in getting and staying at the top? I hear that some women and men service judges for better placing... any truth to that?
Well now, this is indeed a touchy subject. A subject that many people in this industry would rather not talk about. Well, I've seen judge's use pens as well as pencils. What they write with doesn't have anything to do with them changing scores or a placing. Fact is, the Weider organization has a great deal to with where an athlete places. I never thought this until the most recent events with Gunter Schlierkamp. Everyone knows Gunter had absolutely no business in the top five at last years Olympia, but the Weider group want him to be Mr. Olympia. It's been heard many times by Ben Weider and for some reason Ben and Joe have a soft spot for big European white guys who do whatever they say.
As far as judges changing scores? Absolutely. They sit there in the judging area talking among themselves discussing where they're going to place who. I think that's wrong. Fact is, they should not be able to speak to each other at all. The only person who should be able to talk to the judges is the head judge so he can find out who they want called for comparisons. Outcomes of shows would be totally different if they could not talk. I think partitions should be placed between judges at shows so no conversation can take place.
When you say service judges I'm assuming you're talking about sexual favors. I suppose an athlete may have shagged a judge from time to time. I think one popular pro has been with a few judges from what I understand. I think it would depend on how good the athlete's performance was in determining his or her placing. I just don't know of any athletes banging judges so they can place better.
Looking forward to next month's column already. Keep reading and I'll keep the truth coming.
Don't forget to e-mail your questions to me at email@example.com right away! See you next month on Bodybuilding.com.