Amateur Bodybuilder Of The Week: Heavily Equipped

Nick Olsen is an up-and-coming physique competitor with mammoth goals. He's not only competing in the 2013 Arnold Classic. He plans to win it and become an IFBB pro!

Name: Nick Olsen
BodySpace: nickolsen
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Age: 31  Height: 6'0"  Weight: 203 lbs
Years Bodybuilding: 4

How Did Your Bodybuilding Journey Begin?

My involvement in fitness started 11 years ago. I was 20 years old, weighed 230 pounds and partied like crazy. I started playing soccer when I was three years old. It kept me fit until my mid-teens when my unhealthy habits started catching up to me. I drank alcohol every weekend, ate fast food, and dropped from playing soccer four times per week to one, which resulted in a 50-pound weight gain.

One day, I looked at a picture of myself and saw how big I was. That's when I decided to change my life. I quit smoking cigarettes, cleaned up my diet, and started exercising. From day one at the gym, I was hooked. It became my outlet to stay sane and healthy.

I worked in upper level management for six years when I came to the states. I got a job as a National Sales Manager for Extra Space Storage, but my heart was never in it. I love helping and educating people to live a balanced, healthy lifestyle, so I contacted my gym and asked what it took to become a personal trainer. The manager guided me to the NASM website, and within three weeks I had my certification. In May 2008, I quit my job as sales manager and started a career in the fitness industry.

24-Hour Fitness (my gym) has lots of well-qualified personal trainers, so I needed to set myself apart. I decided to compete at a natural bodybuilding show and it worked.

How Did Your Passion for Bodybuilding Emerge?

It came through my passion for lifting. I wanted something to set me apart as a trainer, but I discovered a whole new world. I didn't grow up wanting to be a bodybuilder, but I have always been a competitor to the teeth. That is where my drive comes from. If I want to do something, I set a goal and go for it. Lifting and becoming a competitor showed me a new lifestyle and environment. It keeps my life healthy and focused.

What/Who Motivated You to be a Bodybuilder?

The top guys in the physique world like Steve Cook and Alex Carneiro have the look I want. I don't idolize them; I use them as examples of what is possible.

Where Did You Go for Inspiration?

I use Facebook and for inspiration. I love reading about new approaches to training and nutrition and trying them out.

What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

My next goal is to win the Arnold Classic in 2013. I will be competing in men's physique and representing my home country of Denmark. I'm excited and will bring my best package to the stage. I have had a good off-season and will come in 8-10 pounds heavier than normal. After that, the goal is to become an IFBB pro men's physique competitor.

What Is the Most Important Bodybuilding Tip?

Bodybuilding is a lifestyle; it's not a fad that you do once in a while. Before you start, decide if you are ready for a new life. I tell people it's the hardest sport in the world because you have to live and breathe it day in and day out. Every meal and rep counts if you want to be the best. It's 100 percent worth it, but it's not for everyone.

Who Is Your Favorite Bodybuilder?

This is a hard one. Arnold and Zane are the biggest because they are trendsetters. I love people who are different and do different things. We're not all the same and evolution comes from people who dare to go a different direction than everyone else. I have lots of respect for people like this.

How Did Help You Reach Your Goals?

At first, it was the supplements I ordered. Then I discovered the articles and experts that give advice and I started using the site on a daily basis. I started my BodySpace account to keep track of my progress with photos, weight, and body fat percentage.