Mike Baltz


For the record, I'm 44 years old, am married with 2 young kids, live in southern Illinois, and for the last year have managed a Gold's Gym for a living. I had a spinal fusion when I was 17 and was diagnosed with degenerative disk disease several years ago. I tend toward an endomorph body-type and I have narrow shoulders, a thick waist, and naturally small calves. In other words, I am a regular guy with less than ideal genetics.

I started lifting at the Belleville Weightlifting Club when I was thirteen. I began as an Olympic-lifter but quickly switched over to bodybuilding. I did several teenage bodybuilding shows, then took twenty years off, and started competing again in natural, drug-tested shows when I turned 40. My goal these days is to get my Pro Card.

I have a PhD in biology from the University of Missouri - Columbia, but learned most of what I know about bodybuilding from time spent in the gym and reading that I've done in the last several years. In other words, my PhD in bodybuilding is from the University of Trial and Error.

In my articles for Bodybuilding.com I write about what I know and believe. Namely, that this muscle-building thing ain't rocket science, that anyone who wants to can pretty much reclaim their student body, and that the effort to buff up and/or to compete should be enjoyable. I also like to poke fun at myself and my gym-mates, because sometimes we really deserve it!

Check out my BodySpace profile (BahamaMan).