Growing up, I was always heavily involved in other sports (soccer, baseball, basketball, football). I played on a few club soccer teams, and even played soccer and football at the same time. I would go straight from soccer practice to football practice! Eventually, I gave up every other sport and focused only on football. At 17 years old, I was 6'3", 245 pounds, and ran a 4.6 "forty". As a Defensive End, a football scholarship was definitely in my future, and probably even a professional career.
Iâ€™m not trying to brag about myself, but I was just that good, nobody could stop me. My junior year in high school, I suffered nerve damage to the major nerve group that controls the upper right side of the body. I was strongly advised, or convinced rather, that it was not worth risking additional damage to the nerve and becoming partially paralyzed. My football career was over.
After two months of therapy, my injury had somewhat improved. So, I began lifting weights again. Other than legs, I still had to go easy on any upper body movements. Time passed and I grew bigger and stronger. At 18 years old, I weighed about 255 pounds. I was benching close to 400 and squatting 500. At that point, however, I still didn't know much about training or bodybuilding. All I wanted to do was get BIG, and I did that by lifting big weight and eating like a ravenous beast. Needless to say, Momma fed me well!
High school ended and I was off to attend college at West Georgia University. Somehow, through all of the parties and "going out", I managed to stay somewhat focused on training. That is, I still found time to do it. I would say that I made very slow, but steady gains in the gym until I was about 20. At that time I moved back home, in lieu of transferring to UGA, and made tremendous gains in muscular development.
I believe it was a combination of being at home, learning more about training, and most of all, reaching a point physically at which my muscles started to mature. This was a turning point for me. From this point, bodybuilding began to consume my mind and my lifestyle. I loved every minute of my newfound identity as a "bodybuilder".
Despite a few downfalls here and there, I continue to make great gains to this day. I am improving constantly as I learn more about training and what works best for me. My passion and determination grow with every rep. Next March I plan on making my bodybuilding debut!