Overcoming Death to Make My Bodybuilding Dreams Come True
No Nonsense Magazine Volume 24, #3
By: Jason Jarrett
I'm a straight-talker, and I can honestly say that my life has been guided by bodybuilding. I started bodybuilding back in 1998 after taking a job at a reputable tree company. I had always been small and skinny. Yet my new job required me to climb and cut down trees. Often, I needed to trim limbs very close to electric power lines. The tools were heavy. I needed to be much stronger to do my job well. I wanted to succeed, and bodybuilding provided the best answer to gaining the size, strength, and endurance I needed to gain the respect of my crew and management.
The tools got heavier as the demands of my job grew. A big part of it was cutting logs in hurricane-stricken states. Not only was upper-body strength required, but I also needed to improve my leg strength which is essential for a climbing arborist. I had begun a weight training program and was making progress, but not enough. After nearly a year, my weight stood at 135lbs. Then I added Beverly International supplements to my regimen. A daily intake of Beverly proteins, Creatine Select and Glutamine Select, increased my weight to 150lbs in six months. That's when I fell in love with bodybuilding, and it became my life's passion. Despite my extremely physically demanding job, I was going to the gym 6-7 days a week for two hours at a time. I began to prepare for my first bodybuilding contest.
In 2008, my life changed dramatically. I was critically injured one day while pulling the top of a tree over. As I best recollect, the top snagged in a second tree beside it and caused the top I was holding to pop free and fall onto the wire that I was pulling it away from. Twelve thousand five hundred volts went through my left arm, down through my chest cavity, and exited through my left leg, killing me instantly. My circulatory system shut down. The weight of the top of the tree was heavy enough to go through the wire and break the current, which allowed me to let go. Now lifeless and hanging in the tree, my coworkers brought me down in an aerial rescue. My crew started CPR. I was revived over life-flight to Cleveland Metrohealth Medical Center.
Although electrocution on the job postponed my bodybuilding dream, it was not ended. I remember while in the hospital staring at the EKG machine and trying to ignore the fears of losing my sport. I was unable to move my arm. My ribs were fractured due to the CPR the paramedics performed to revive me to life. When a person is electrocuted, it cooks a person from the inside out like a hotdog. My heart had been traumatized, and the doctors speculated that I would never be able to use my left arm correctly or at full strength ever again. They called it rehab, but I saw rehabilitation as my road back to bodybuilding.
I would repeat to myself, "I will not let my dream die, I will not" during every therapy session. Doctors gave me a small EKG device that was hooked to my belt. My injury left me with a heart murmur, bradycardia and my heart would frighteningly misfire, causing mini heart attacks. Yet, I persevered as any died in the wool bodybuilder would. Through encouragement and grit, my arm began to work correctly. I left the hospital and therapy sessions with enough progress that I was able to get myself back in the gym.
I wanted my bodybuilding back. I wouldn't listen to anyone who remarked I shouldn't or couldn't do it again. My arm wasn't 100%. (I still have a small amount of muscle deformation on my left arm where the electricity entered my body as a reminder of that time.) I decided to go all out on a complete nutrition regimen and daily workout program. I took Beverly's Glutamine Select to speed recovery and reduce muscle soreness, while Creatine Select increased my strength, power, speed, and stamina. I stacked those two products with UMP protein to support the muscle rebuilding process and gradually regained my lost muscle.
Ten years after my accident, my heart had finally healed itself, and I was able to stop taking all the prescription medication that followed my injury. I was ready to compete in bodybuilding. Doctors and therapists were amazed, but I did it. Now at the age of 44, I entered my first bodybuilding competition. I signed up for the 2021 Northcoast Championships weighing 182lbs. As the competition grew closer, I leaned out. I added Lean Out to my UMP, Creatine Select, and Glutamine Select stack for pre-contest preparation. If someone wants to compete, Lean Out is a must for a cutting diet.
I cut my weight to 164lbs and entered nine events doing novice, open, and masters in bodybuilding, classic physique, and men's physique as a welter-weight. I medaled four times. Frankly, I almost cried, knowing what I'd overcome and trained so hard for. My road to these medals took over 20 years, but I never lost my passion for bodybuilding.
Bodybuilding still helps me be a maniac at tree-work. But this one competition isn't enough. Joe Toth, a former Mr. Ohio and 3X powerlifting champ, is going to coach me. My goal now is to become a pro. I will never give up on this dream and will come out blasting, bigger, stronger, and better than ever!
This is what my weekly training routine looks like. Each body part gets worked twice per week. One day is a heavy, low repetition day, and the other is a lighter, high repetition day.
Machine Squat 5x5-8
Angle Leg Press 5x6-8
Glute Thrust 5x8
RDL's with Dumbbells 6x6-10
Calf Raises 6x6-10
Chest Work: Workout 1
Dumbbell Bench Press 4x6
Dumbbell Incline Press 4x6
Mid Pulley Crossover 3x8
Weighted Dip 3x10
Rope or Cable Extension 8x6
Cable Pull Downs 6x10-12
Nose Busters 4x10/10/20's
Dumbbell Kickbacks 4x10
Back Work / Lats
Wide Grip Pull-ups 3 sets of 45 seconds
Rack Pulls 3x8
Underhand Grip Inverted Row 3x10
Dumbbell Isolations Curls 5x8-10
Dumbbell Hammer Curls 5x8-10
Dumbbell Cross Chest Curls 5x8-10
Machine Curls 3 sets to failure
Overhead Dumbbell Press 4x6-8
Dumbbell Shrugs 4x6-8
Dumbbell Front Raises 6x8-10
Incline Dumbbell Lateral Raises 6x8-10
Dumbbell Side Raises 6x10
Lawn Mower Rows 4x10
Elbows Out Chest Support Row 3x10
Prone Trap Raise 3x12
Prepping for Show Diet: 6 meals per day:
2 servings UMP protein, 1 tbsp MCT oil,
1 cup oatmeal
6oz chicken, 1 red pepper, ¹⁄₄ cup almonds
10 egg whites, 1 red pepper
2 servings UMP protein, 1 kiwi, 1 tbsp MCT oil
6oz chicken, 1¹⁄₄ cup rice, 1 kiwi
1 scoop UMP protein
Current Prepping Diet: 5 meals per day:
10 egg whites or 2 servings UMP protein,
1 tbsp MCT oil, 1 cup oatmeal
10 egg whites, 6oz potato, ¹⁄₄ cup almonds
6oz chicken, 1 cup rice, 2 tbsp MCT oil
6oz chicken, 2 red potatoes or 2 apples,
2 tbsp MCT oil
1 ¹⁄₂ scoops UMP 4 rice cakes,
2 tbsp peanut butter
These are the Beverly Products I recommend:
UMP Protein: This is a 90% milk protein isolate obtained from fresh grade
A skim milk. It has a ratio of 80/20 Casein to Whey. That is your fast and your slow-digesting proteins. It is also fortified with Arginine, Glutamine, and BCAA's. That's known as the critical cluster. It is also low in fat and carbs. UMP causes no gas or bloating.
Creatine Select: Promotes strength, power, speed, and stamina. It also promotes muscle building and preservation. Creatine Select is a proven form of creatine plus essential phosphates, electrolytes, and beta-alanine.
Glutamine Select: Helps reduce soreness, quicken recovery, and keep you hydrated. It contains 8000mg total of pharmaceutical Grade L-Glutamine and BCAA's in the same doses shown to enhance lean muscle and strength.
Lean Out: Helps with fat loss and overall wellness. Lean Out contains lipotropics and L-Carnitine, which help transport stored fat to the muscle to burn it as fuel. It can also reduce the urge to overeat and improve carbohydrate tolerance.