On the Road to Success
By: Sean Young
My journey with Beverly International began when I was just 20 years old and a college student studying for my master’s degree in physical therapy. I decided to do a bodybuilding show and was told Beverly was the company to see! I met Roger and Sandy and many others from the Beverly family. They were instrumental in teaching me about the role of nutrition in bodybuilding. I also saw first-hand the difference that their quality supplements made in my physique.
Fast forward 18 years: I am now a happily married father of 4 daughters, professional natural bodybuilder with multiple Pro wins, have completed multiple full and half marathons, am a physical therapist and run my own fitness training and consulting company called The Impakt Lab. Something that has remained consistent through it all, my supplementation with Beverly International supplements!
In this article I’d like to give you a glimpse into my “training life” and let you see how I approached 3 unique challenges this past year.
One thing I have learned over the years is balance is the key to success. With every competition or life event comes a new challenge to our balance and homeostasis. I am always up for a new challenge, but with the main rule that I make sure to be a good husband, father and person at the same time! This year my challenges were to:
1. Run a half and full marathon in the spring.
2. Take my wife and 4 daughters on a camping trip out west for 3 weeks.
3. Compete in multiple “natural pro” bodybuilding contests in the fall.
The first challenge I would face was how to maintain my muscle mass and remain injury free while training to run a marathon. The next challenge would be how to initiate my bodybuilding precontest training while on an extended camping trip with my family. Yes, these would not be easy feats, but with Beverly in my corner I knew I could make it happen.
Challenge #1: (Prepare to run a marathon while maintaining my muscle mass)
Running a marathon was the goal during this phase, but bodybuilding remained a priority. I worked out with weights 5 days a week, and devoted 2 days to running. I also added a cardio / cross training segment to my Wednesday weight workout. This included tire flips, jump rope, air dyne bike, battle ropes, tire hammers etc. Here is an example of a typical week:
Monday: Legs (quad emphasis)
Tuesday: Upper Back (pulling movements) and Lateral Delts
Wednesday: Chest and Triceps; plus Cross Training or 3 miles on the Elliptical
Thursday: Mid distance run, stretching and foam rolling
Friday: Lats / Hamstrings (posterior chain movements) and Biceps
Saturday: Upper Chest and Anterior Delts
Sunday: Long run (progressively add mileage each week)
Phase 1 Supplement Plan
Joint Care: 3 capsules twice daily to maintain / protect my joints from the pounding they were getting from running and weight training
Quadracarn: 3 tabs 3 times daily for testosterone support
Glutamine Select: for recovery
UMP and Mass Maker Ultra: (see sample diet)
ZMA 2000: for added recovery and testosterone support
Up-Lift: I mixed Up-Lift and Glutamine Select together in my water bottles during long runs. (This is great for any extended cardio activity where too much caffeine would be detrimental.)
Phase 1 Meal Plan
When training for running, I like to keep my carbs high every day since I never have a rest day. My average macros are approximately 200 grams protein, 400 grams carbs, and 25 grams fat.
Here is an example of my meal plan during this phase:
Meal 1: 8 egg whites, 100 grams Cream of Wheat
Meal 2: 2 scoops UMP, 7 rice cakes
Meal 3: 5oz chicken breast, 15oz potato
Meal 4: 2 scoops Mass Maker Ultra
Meal 5: 5oz chicken, 15oz potato, 2 cups veggies
Meal 6: 2 scoops UMP (made into protein pudding), 7 rice cakes dipped in the pudding!
Modifications as the marathon draws closer
When my runs on Sunday were 12 miles or more, I would cut back on my Monday leg workout. I’d still do the basics – squats and leg presses, but I’d cut out any accessory movements. I also added more mobility work including plenty of foam rolling and stretching.
I ran my first race of the season, the Heart Mini Marathon in March. It was a success so I continued to ramp up my longer runs training to complete a full marathon at the Flying Pig in May. At the Flying Pig, I also entered the Pump and Run division. I received a gold medal in the “pump” portion of this event in the “30+ Pump Club” for benching 30 or more reps with my bodyweight on the bar. In addition, I completed the full marathon!
I did not use any pre-run dietary manipulation tricks. Since my daily carbs were already fairly high there was no reason for me to carb up before the race. One of the major benefits that I noticed was that I had no gastric upset during the long runs or races. This is a fairly common occurrence for those who engage in some heavy carbing up before their races.
Challenge #2: 3-week off-road family camping vacation at the beginning of my precontest preparations
After successfully completing my first challenge, my training was back to normal. I replaced my long runs with interval workouts, got back into a routine and then… took off with my family on a 3-week camping trip out west. I was just beginning preparations for some pro contests coming up in the fall so I couldn’t miss workouts. But, it’s not easy to always get a workout while on a camping trip. Here’s how I did it.
I brought a good set of resistance bands along with me and used them for the majority of my workouts. I attached bands to trees, to our camper, and used them in “who knows how many ways”. Pushups and bodyweight squats for high reps were another mainstay. For cardio there were long hikes, often while carrying one or more of my tired little girls. I also tried to get one “gym” workout in each week. There are many gyms who offer a 1 day membership for travelers. It took some research to find one in the areas we camped but I managed to get one full body weight workout each week.
By the way, if you are going to do one full body workout per week, I’d recommend you stick to the basics. My workouts were based around squats, deadlifts, and presses. That way the particular gym you’re at will not have to offer any specialized machines required for your workout. With the addition of one weekly “gym” workout, I was able to break my “camping workout” scheme into 1 full body workout, 3 band workouts and a lot of hiking each week!
Now, I’m going to give you an example of one of my bodyweight/band workout days. I enjoy getting up early and found there is nothing better than working out outdoors and watching the sunrise! Our camping neighbors may have thought I was crazy, but when you have goals it doesn’t matter.
Warm up: 50 pushups, 50 bodyweight squats and 50 jumping jacks
Circuit 1: (3 rounds of 20 reps) - Band Low Rows (tie the band to a tree), Band Laterals, and Bodyweight Squats
Circuit 2: (3 rounds to fatigue) - Pushups, Band Bicep Curls and alternating Backstep Lunges holding a weighted object (find a nice sized rock or child)
Circuit 3: (3 rounds to fatigue) - Band Tricep Pushdowns, Band Pulldowns and Band Squats
Circuit 4: (3 rounds to fatigue) - Band Shoulder Press, Close Grip Pushups and Single Leg Split Squat
Repeat warm up sequence to end the workout.
Phase 2 Supplement and “On the Road” Meal Plan
Quadracarn & ZMA 2000 I continue to take Quadracarn (3 tabs 3x/day) and ZMA 2000 (3 capsules before bed) for testosterone support and to maintain lean mass.
UMP & Muscle Provider As you’ll notice in my “On the Road Meal Plan”, I rely heavily on high quality Beverly proteins whenever we camp. It’s not easy for me to cook chicken and store it properly while on the road.
Here is an example of my meal plan while on the road:
Meal 1: 1 scoop Muscle Provider and 1 bagel
Meal 2: 2 scoops UMP and 2 packets low sugar oatmeal (mixed and drank as a shake)
Meal 3: 1 can chicken and 1 bagel
Meal 4: 2 scoops UMP and 2 packets low sugar oatmeal (same as meal 2)
Meal 5: 1 can tuna, 7 rice cakes
Meal 6: 2 scoops UMP
Macros on average were around 180 grams protein, 300 grams carbs and 30 grams fat. This was enough to sustain my energy, provide quality protein and a simple meal plan to begin my transition to contest prep.
The trip was a blast, we camped from Cincinnati to California and back, traveling over 6000 miles and visiting 12 national parks!
Challenge #3: Contest Season!
At the end of the summer, the total plan was coming to fruition. I was able to maintain my muscle mass and had been leaning down throughout the previous 2 phases. When we arrived home from our camping trip I was 8 weeks out from my first show, the PNBA Pro Team USA championships and 14 weeks out from the Natural Olympia.
Precontest Supplement Plan
Quadracarn & ZMA 2000: as in the previous phases
Muscle Synergy: I use 2-3 scoops Muscle Synergy powder each day during contest prep. It intensifies my pumps and allows me to continue building muscle while on a contest prep diet. Besides starting my day with Muscle Synergy (mixed with Up-Lift, see below), I actually like to eat my Synergy before my workout. I just take a scoop, throw it back and chew on it!
Up-Lift: My job requires that I get up between 4:30 and 5 each day and on top of work and my online business - as mentioned earlier I have 4 daughters and coach their teams. Needless to say, my days are long. Being on a calorie restricted diet, I don’t eat first thing in the morning. I begin my day with coffee, then switch to sipping on what I refer to as my cherry lemonade, Muscle Synergy and Up-Lift!
Glutamine Select: As the day progresses I sip on Glutamine Select throughout the day. It helps curb my cravings and feed my muscle between meals.
Lean Out: I take 2 Lean Out with each of my 6 meals (12 total per day) to facilitate fat loss. Lean Out helps your body convert carbs and stored fat into real energy.
Precontest Meal Plan
Here is an example of my meal plan at 8 weeks out: portion sizes vary depending on the phase of my diet and progress. I also do one additional scoop of Muscle Provider post-workout.
Meal 1: Egg whites and Cream of Wheat
Meal 2: 1 scoop Muscle Provider, 1 apple
Meal 3: Chicken and 2 cups vegetables
Meal 4: 1 scoop Muscle Provider and rice cakes
Meal 5: Lean beef and vegetables
Meal 6: UMP and peanut butter
I trained each body part twice a week for 15 sets per training session. This gave me a total of 30 sets per body part per week. I also began posing and doing steady state cardio for 30 minutes 2x/week.
I was able to come to the PNBA Team USA as planned and ended up placing first in the Classic Physique division and qualifying for the Natural Olympia. I then followed that up with a Pro bodybuilding win 3 weeks later at the NPF Natural West Virginia. I finished out the year with a top 5 finish in PNBA Natural Olympia competing against natural champions from around the world.