An interview with one of the top Trainer/Nutritionist in the business. Kim Oddo shares how he got started in the industry and tips on choosing a trainer that's right for you.
Kim runs Body By O - which has a long list of past and current clients on its roster. He is currently working with super star Monica Brant on her upcoming Arnold Classic figure competition. I had the chance to meet Kim at the 2004 Ironman Pro show and he is a genuine nice guy. A number of women in the Ironman NPC Figure competition were trained by him. The overall winner, Abby Duncan, was one of them.
Kim was kind enough to answer a few questions before heading off to the Arnold Classic...
Murrieta, California - Riverside County. My facility is located in Temecula, California
Years in Health and Fitness Industry:
Over 15 years of first competitive bodybuilding and then as Personal Trainer & Nutritionist.
How did you go from marketing to the fitness industry?
I started competed in bodybuilding events in the mid 80's while in college. Later as I continued to compete I started to also help some of my friends for their shows. Soon it became clear that I could turn something that I loved into a viable business.
What is the main focus of Body By O?
The main focus of Body By O is what I personally believe is extremely important in fitness today. Getting results for the client. I want my client to see a major improvement in his/her physique and that is my main goal!
How long have you had your training facility?
Five years now.
Number of staff members:
We currently have 7 staff members on site at our facility.
How did you come to be the coach for the Women's Bodybuilding and Fitness team in 2002?
One of my fitness clients had just won a national competition and she was invited to participate in the 2002 World Games in Brno, Czech Republic. IFBB Head Judge, Sandy Rinalli approached me and asked if I would be interested in being the coach for all the female athletes while they were in the Czech Republic. It was an amazing experience and one I will never forget.
How is training women different from men?
Women train with less focus on muscularity and hard conditioning, yet the intensity in their training sessions can be quite high. Also women need to focus more on their cardio conditioning and so a major focus of the training will be in that area.
What's the most rewarding part of your job?
Seeing physiques improve, seeing the self confidence of my clients really come forth. I like to see lives change for the better. When you feel healthy, the sky's the limit.
What should competitors look for in a trainer/ nutritionist?
Someone who is very knowledgeable not only in training and nutrition, but who understands all the angles of competition. It also helps to choose a trainer who you can communicate with.
You have a number of successful competitors on your roster - the best known being Monica Brant. How did you and Monica come to work together?
My good friend, IFBB Fitness Pro Laurie Vaniman called me and said she had spoken to Monica and that Monica may be interested in having me give her some advice in the area of nutrition. So I met with Monica and we began to lay out a plan for her future competitions.
How is Mo looking for the Arnold Classic?
Monica is looking great - she works so hard for every competition and this year is no different. Monica always brings her best package on stage!
The concern of many in the industry seems to be that the women in figure are getting bigger and harder every year. What are your thoughts?
It really is an individual choice for the athlete to decide how lean or muscular she wants to be in competition. I prefer to have my clients looking lean, with good musculature, yet still looking very feminine.
How did you come to work with Kelly Ryan years ago?
Again, my good friend Laurie Vaniman called me. She & Kelly were working with the same gymnastics coach and Kelly had mentioned wanting to get some help with the nutritional aspect of her competitive career. We met and started working together in 1999
Biggest challenge in training pros over amateur competitors?
The stakes are a lot higher since the Pros have the opportunity to win contest monies, secure contracts with supplement companies, be asked to appear in photo shoots, product endorsements etc. But my amateur athletes train just as hard and put as much of themselves into each competition!
You also train Julie Childs, how is Julie improving for the upcoming season?
Julie is looking awesome right now and is constantly making improvements to her physique. She is an extremely hard worker who brings her own high level of professionalism to each show. Learn more about Julie here.
Abby Duncan recently won the Ironman NPC Figure. Congrats - she looked great. How did Abby improve since last year's Ironman show?
Thank you! Abby came into this years Ironman leaner, with a bit more muscle and also presented a more polished look onstage.
What other competitors should do well this year that you train?
I have many that I am very excited about but they all work so hard and look so incredible I could really name them all!
Favorite shows to attend?
Definitely the Olympia, the Arnold, USA, and The Cal.
What's the best advice you can give someone thinking of competing to get started?
Work hard, talk to other competitors to get some idea of what the contest world is all about, but definitely do find a trainer who knows what physique you need for competition. Believe in your own potential!
Coming from a marketing background, what advice do you have for competitors trying to promote themselves and gain sponsorships?
Do your homework when researching the different companies you may be interested in. Get professional photos done and just try to present the most professional package possible when appearing in contests or even just attending expos etc..
Anything else you'd like to share?
I truly am lucky to work in an industry where I have met so many incredible people. It has been an amazing journey and I look forward to the future of Fitness & Figure! Thanks Isaac!
Thanks Kim! I appreciate you answering these questions and best of luck to all your competitors this year. If anyone is interested in learning more about Kim's services contact him through his web site at: http://bodybyo.com.