Becoming a Better Me!

At a Glance: Susan Ramsey

Age: 36

Occupation: Radiologic Technologist and Certified Personal Trainer

Family: Married to my high school sweetheart, Clint. We broke up senior year and reunited 10 years later! We have two sons, ages 6 and 3.

Current residence: Montgomery, IN

Years training: 5+

Height: 5'4"

Weight: Off Season - 125 lb, Contest - 110 lb

Favorite fitness meal: 30 grams old fashioned oats mixed with 1 scoop UMP Cookies & Crème. Or 4-6 oz lean meat, 130 grams sweet potatoes, steamed asparagus and Brussels sprouts.

Favorite Supplement: UMP! The shakes taste like a milkshake and help curb any sweet craving. My sons even love UMP shakes (especially chocolate)! I also like to take a small spoonful of the chocolate UMP and mix with my coffee. Tastes like a café mocha.

What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly? If you have never used Beverly products, I highly recommend starting with their protein powder. Beverly UMP is hands down the best tasting protein powder out there! It does not leave a nasty aftertaste, and it legit is like having a treat. You can also bake healthy goodies with it.

Music: I like a wide variety, but I am a huge George Strait fan.

Most Inspiring Book: The Bible

Hobby or Interests outside bodybuilding: Hanging with my family, reading, watching Dateline, and tending to my flowers/garden.

Words to live by: Every opportunity is an experience to learn.


I have always enjoyed fitness, but it was mainly cardio and only occasionallylifting a light dumbbell. After having my first son in 2012, I decided to get my body in shape. That’s when I discovered weights and fell in love with them! My body started changing, I finally began to see some muscle tone. For years I would scroll through social media, jealous of the women who were on stage and wishing I could be like them.

In 2015, while I was very pregnant with our second son, I expressed my desire to compete to my husband. Without hesitation, he encouraged me to go for it as soon as I could after having our baby. So in 2016, I competed in my first show. (I went to a show in a different state so no one would know me). I placed and since then have fallen in love with the sport. I love the idea of working on becoming a better me and seeing the results! My latest competition was May 4, 2019; I competed in the Indiana Muscle in Evansville, IN. I placed 3rd in Masters, 2nd in Bikini Novice B, and 2nd in Bikini Open B.

When the word got out that I was a competitor, women began asking about my workouts. Throughout the years my husband and I had turned half of our basement into a home gym. With both of us working full time and having two small children, going to a gym was not doable. So I thought, "Why don't I start training women here?" I trained my first group session on January 3, 2017. I only had a few women in the beginning, but I absolutely loved it! Soon after, I became a certified personal trainer. My clientele has grown thanks to word of mouth, and I now have 50+ clients. The past two years I have been working full time and running my fitness business part time. After a wonderful 13 years working in radiology, I resigned in May, 2019 to focus on my growing personal training business. It brings me so much joy to see the women I train become more confident, stronger, and learn to live a healthier lifestyle.

My classes are strictly strength training. I have found that most women do not feel comfortable lifting weights in the gym and will just go to the cardio machines. My goal is to educate them on what to do and give them the confidence they need in order to achieve their goals.

I thank God daily for blessing me with this opportunity. I preach to my clients, fitness is a lifestyle, not a seasonal hobby.

In the remainder of this article I will discuss my own personal competition training, diet and supplement programs. I hope that you will be able to incorporate them into your own physique improvement plan.



I wake up at 4am every day to get my workout in. It is important to have that time to work on becoming a better me. Plus, I sleep better at night! Here’s a workout that has given me great results!


Exercise SetsReps
Lat Pulldowns412
Seated Cable Row412
Bent Over DB Row412
Close Grip Pull Downs412
Rower- As fast as I can for 15 minutes


Tuesday: Glutes and Quads

Exercise SetsReps
Leg Extensions510
Wide Stance Leg Press412
Hip Abductions415
Barbell Hip Thrusters415
Cable Kickbacks412


Wednesday: Shoulders

Exercise SetsReps
Dumbbell Lateral Raises412-15
DB Shoulder Press412
Cable Upright Rows415
Plate Front Raises412
Cable 1-Arm Laterals410
Rear Delt DB Fly412


Thursday: Triceps and Biceps

Exercise SetsReps
Triceps Press Down510
Triceps Bench Dips510
1-Arm Triceps Pulldown412
DB Overhead Extensions412
Biceps Curls412
Cable 1-Arm Curls410
Hammer Curls412


Friday: Chest and Core

Exercise SetsReps
Smith Bench Press412
Seated Chess Press412
Incline DB Chest Press412
DB Flye412
Hanging Leg Raises412
V-Ups Holding A Weight415


Saturday: Shoulders, Glutes & Hamstrings

Exercise SetsReps
DB Lateral Raises412
Kettle Bell Upright Rows412
DB Shoulder Press412
Barbell Hip Thrusters412
Hip Abductions320
Romanian Deadlifts412
Hamstring Curls412
Bulgarian Split Lunges412


Sunday: Rest



Off season I do cardio 25-30 min 2-3x a week. During competition prep I will spend my lunch hour getting it in. I do walking on an incline or the elliptical. I have found that strength training is what gives me the best results. When I used to concentrate on cardio and restrictive eating, I had little results. Speaking of eating…


I track macros, and I love making my meals healthy, yet fun. I allow one cheat meal a week, and I drink at least 1 gallon of water a day. Meal prepping is so important to me! Every Sunday I prep my foods for the week, and it helps me stay on track. Consistency is the key, and I train and eat well all year round. Here’s a typical pre competition diet day.

Meal 1: 30 grams old fashioned oats with 1 scoop UMP Cookies & Crème (optional add 1/4 cup blueberries)

Meal 2: 1 cup egg whites, 1 whole egg, handful of spinach plus 3 slices turkey bacon, and 1 slice Ezekiel raisin bread toast

Meal 3: 4-5oz lean ground turkey, 130 grams sweet potatoes, 85 grams steamed Brussels sprouts, and 50 grams steamed asparagus

Meal 4: 2 rice cakes with 2 tbsp natural peanut butter or a honeycrisp apple

Meal 5: 4-5oz chicken breast, 1 cup steamed veggies, 40-50 grams avocado and either 1/2 cup rice or 65 grams potatoes

Meal 6: Protein shake using 1 scoop UMP Angel Food Cake, 8-10 oz water, handful of ice, and 4-5oz frozen strawberries

UMP Protein Waffle

Here’s one of my favorite recipes – and it’s good off season or pre-contest.

  • 1 scoop UMP Angel Food Cake
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

Add a small spoonful of unsweetened applesauce or a splash of low fat milk.

Mix really well with a spoon. The mixture will be a small, sticky blob, but after you place it in a heated waffle maker it expands into a nice waffle!
I sometimes add fruit to my mixture. Make sure the waffle iron is well heated and sprayed with a nonstick cooking spray before you start!






I don’t think I could have had the success that I’ve had without Beverly International supplements. Here’s my daily “go-to” supplement regimen.

UMP: I love making protein waffles, adding UMP Cookies & Crème to my morning oatmeal, and making protein shakes using frozen fruit.

Lean Out: I use Lean Out throughout my entire competition prep. I take 2 capsules 3 times a day with meals. It definitely helps me burn fat and “lean out” for the stage.

Glutamine Select (my favorite is their NEW flavor, Wild Berry): I love drinking a scoop or two of Glutamine Select post workout and between meals. Tastes so good!

Ultra 40: Building muscle does not come easy for me. Ultra 40 has helped me put on mass where I needed it, and it gave me the endurance I needed for my workouts. I take 9 tablets a day, 3 with 3 of my meals.

Muscle Synergy Powder: I love drinking this on my arm and shoulder day. It helps give me a good pump plus I really like the lemony taste.


In Closing

My advice to those who are wanting to compete is to know going in that the last few weeks of contest prep are mentally and physically tough. Also make sure you are ready for the self-discipline to be patient and trust the process. Finding time to get all of your workouts and cardio in while having a family and working can be tough. I recommend giving yourself one hour a day to dedicate to your training. As prep goes along, the cardio increases, and that is when I would squeeze in what I could during my lunch break or just 20-30 minutes at night.

Finally, my health is very important to me. Cancer runs strong in my family. I lost my mom to ovarian cancer. I know that to keep my body healthy, I have to make it a priority to take care of myself. There is no excuse to not move your body and eat well. If you feed your body crap, you will feel like crap. Besides maintaining a healthy diet, I fuel my body with Beverly supplements. I am a huge fan of the Beverly products because they are natural and they have really helped me achieve my goals.

I know that most women are busy with work, family, and just life in general. I am here to show you that you can make time to work on a better you. I offer online personal training to those who are not able to attend my classes. My contact for online training is

Focus on You and Do YOUR Best

At a Glance: Tina Parsons

Age: 38

Occupation: Lowe's Companies Corporate headquarters in Wilkesboro, NC

Family: Husband, Kevin and mother of two beautiful girls, Baylee and Hayley

Current Residence: Traphill, North Carolina

Years Strength training (total): 4

Height: 5’0”

Weight: Off Season-117, Race Day-115

Favorite Fitness Meal: Oatmeal with Cookies & Crème UMP and blueberries or strawberries and cinnamon

What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly supplements before? People often ask me about protein supplements. Before I get a chance to answer they say, “Everything I’ve tried tastes terrible.” I always recommend Beverly’s UMP. Every flavor I’ve tried is delicious and it’s so simple to blend. I recommend buying a little personal blender and add a scoop of UMP, add a little ice and water. Mix with blender, and bam! Heavenly treat. It’s honestly like a milkshake, you gotta try it!

Music: My workout playlist is all over the place – some country, but mostly hip-hop, rap and hard rock. I don’t listen to the words, (which is probably a good thing). It is the beat that matters to me. Very rarely does a song get the privilege to be downloaded to my workout playlist, but when it does, you better believe it’s a good one!

Most Inspiring Book: Dave Ramsey- The Total Money Makeover. I just love Dave, he puts life in real world terms with no candy coating.

Hobby or interests outside of racing/training: I especially enjoy training my Doberman who is also my trail running companion. Seems the older I get, the wiser I become, therefore I feel most safe running with a large dog. It’s a little comical when we come running through, people completely clear off the trail. Other hobbies include mountain biking, scuba diving, horseback riding, photography and muscle cars. Last and most important to me is exploring new adventures with my two girls.

Words to live by: Live and have no regrets. Take every opportunity when it knocks, because you may not get another one. Always take time and look at the views, because you never know when you will cross this path again.


I’m not the typical fitness bodybuilder you usually read about in this magazine. But, I am a competitor who trains and focuses on my diet (including using Beverly International supplements) every day. My competitive focus is obstacle course racing (OCR). Several years of hard work, blood, tears, and a lot of sweat culminated in a great 2018 racing year. My biggest highlight was placing 3rd in my age group at the Spartan World Championship race in North Lake Tahoe, CA. I also took 2nd in the Spartan North American Championship, as well as placing 1st in six other local and regional races.

A bit of history

I’m an average busy working mom. I work a full-time office job with a 45-minute commute each way. Like most moms, I am pulled in many directions – there’s always something going on at school or the office. I try not to let my passion for fitness take anything away from my family, but I still feel a little bit of guilt for taking time to achieve my fitness goals. To compensate, I do almost all of my training during my one-hour lunch break at the office. Since my time is limited I make every lift and every mile count. My lunch workouts are absolutely priceless to me. They have made me who I am today in the fitness world. (So, if you are reading this mom, and have an hour lunch break, you can do it too.)

Lessons from the Treadmill

I started out as an absolute beginner. So, I will share some tips that I have learned along the way through trial and error. My fitness journey started in my early 20s. I’m just 5’ tall and I was worried that keeping weight off would be a struggle as I got older. So, not having a clue as to what else to do, I joined the YMCA and started running on the treadmill during my lunch break. I worked up to 3 miles nearly every day. I must say, when you run that long on the treadmill… you have lots of time to think. I began to focus on getting just a little faster with each run. I took things very slow. Each run already felt hard and I wanted to be careful not to burn out. I focused on breathing - keeping my head up and chest open to maximize my lung capacity. Little did I know I was perfecting my running form at the same time. After all these years, I give much of the credit for my running success to these early treadmill workouts. They taught me to be consistent and keep pushing when things get really tough. I still use the treadmill nearly every day.

My Introduction to Weights

Within a blink of a few years, my girls were born and my fitness journey was put on the back burner. I wanted to spend every second I could at home with my babies. Then, after a few years, I resumed running on my treadmill at home. As my running base came back, something inside me had a fire for something more. The day I stepped into a new cross-training gym I discovered what I really wanted. A trainer (also a mom) at this new gym was incredibly fit and had the most amazing abs. This inspired me and I made a goal, that if she can do this, so can I.

My journey in weight lifting had begun. I remember being completely overwhelmed – not only learning the exercises, but trying to remember each one’s name. So, this is what I did and it worked. I made myself a book. I wrote the name of each exercise, searched the internet for a photo, then I cut and pasted it into my book. I took my book with me each time I went to the gym. If you are a beginner, try this. You won’t waste time walking around the weight room trying to remember stuff to do. I learned another important tip from the gym owner. He recommended I write everything down, including weights, reps and how I felt. I quickly fell in love with the changes my body was making.


A few years ago, I joined a CrossFit/training class. I was amazed at how quickly I fell in love with the lifts and the hardcore workouts. I remember not being able to do a single pull up and only using the empty bar for most of my lifts. I was often the last one to complete the WOD (workout of the day), but I didn’t care. My focus was to learn the exercises and do them correctly. What was important for me was to just do my best, focus on me, and not worry about what others were doing. Tip, FOCUS ON YOU and do YOUR BEST, don’t even look around at what everyone else is doing.

I remember being cheered on by others who had finished way before me. I learned how special the social part is and the amazing friends you make along the way. The unspoken part of the CrossFit WOD and the part that is somewhat addictive is the competition. It keeps my fire burning. Now, everyone knows the CrossFit WOD is not a race, but when the clock starts, it’s definitely a fight to be done first. The competition is tough, the WOD is intense with no breaks, but afterwards the feeling of accomplishment is totally amazing.

Enter the OCR

So, all of this led into why I race OCR. It seemed to be a perfect place to test out my fitness. My first Spartan race was in April 2015. I learned very quickly that Spartan races are no joke. I thought I was in pretty good shape, but was unable to complete many of the obstacles. For every failed obstacle, I’d have to do a 30-burpee penalty.  I continued to race with friends that year, and with each race I made a goal to complete more obstacles and do fewer burpees. The next year, I started racing alone and began thinking about racing competitively. I set a goal each race to overcome at least one more obstacle. Sometimes it took several races to achieve this goal, but I never gave up. I knew that I was at a disadvantage scaling the 6’, 7’, or 8’ walls because of my diminutive height. The 16’ rope climb was another big challenge. I could barely get started up before my strength gave out, and on top of that I had a fear of heights. I finally was able to conquer this one by finding a rope at the gym and practicing on it every chance I got. Many rope burns later and some fears conquered, I am now confident I can ring that bell on the rope climb every time.

Diet – Abs are made in the kitchen

As my workouts in the gym intensified and after a few more Spartan races, my obsession of “having abs” resurfaced. Was this even possible for me after two C-sections? I was getting discouraged and when I brought it up to my doctor, he kind of gave me a crazy look. But, I didn’t give up. I had heard the saying, “Abs are made in the kitchen,” so I began to research nutrition.

This is about the time I was first introduced to Beverly products. I knew I needed to get a good amount of protein in, but how? I bought boxes of protein bars which I soon found were loaded with sugar. So, I reached out to a friend for advice and she told me about Beverly UMP. I ordered it online that day and my life has never been the same!

I continued to improve my diet by cutting out sugar, fast food, and most processed foods. I learned that the harder and more often I trained, the more good food I needed to eat. In the past, my body actually stored fat because I was not eating enough! I used a free app, “myfitnesspal”, to track my diet and recorded everything I ate for over a year. I think this is a great tool for everyone who wants to improve their nutrition and stay on track.

Daily Nutrition Plan

Overall, my diet does not change much during the year. I eat about the same foods every day. The only exception is I reduce my carb intake a little on rest days. Here’s an example of my everyday eating schedule.

7:30: Usually a sweet potato muffin which I eat during my morning commute

9:30: 3-4 egg whites with shredded cheese (in the microwave at work)

11:00: (About an hour prior to my workout) instant oatmeal with UMP Cookies & Crème, blueberries and cinnamon

1:30: (Post workout) UMP Graham Cracker shake

2:30: Grilled chicken, turkey, or salmon, and sweet potato mash (mash together a small sweet potato, 1oz cream cheese, honey, molasses, and cinnamon)

4:00: Spoonful of peanut butter or almond butter with dried apple slices

7:00: Usually something light like a spinach salad with pecans, chicken, and cheese

10:00: UMP Graham Cracker shake

I often treat myself before and after a race to foods I love as a reward for the hard work I put in. This keeps me happy and becomes another motivation to keep racing! I love pizza, so the night before the Spartan World Championship race in North Lake Tahoe, I ate nearly an entire Hawaiian pizza with no regret! Running a grueling 10-13+ mile race climbing up steep mountains, yeah… I think I worked hard for that pizza. So, if you work hard but have a strict diet, take time to occasionally reward yourself with foods you enjoy.


As noted earlier, I do almost all of my training during my lunch break. I start each session with a one-mile run on the treadmill for a warm-up. After that I do either a Cross Fit WOD, or train a specific bodypart in a bodybuilding type workout. On gorgeous days when I need some sunshine in my life, I may trade my lift day for a 5-6 mile mountain bike ride or a 3-5 mile trail run.

Saturdays are usually a rest day (if not racing), or if I’m lucky to get to town for another lifting workout.

Sunday, it’s usually a long trail run at the state park in Stone Mountain, NC. Hard mountain running with amazing views are always worth it, I look forward to Sundays because it refreshes my soul.





My favorite Beverly supplement is UMP. I use it several times a day. UMP Cookies & Crème is a must in my morning oatmeal. I always have an UMP Graham Cracker shake blended with water and ice after my midday workout, and often another one right before bed.

Glutamine Select is a must in my gym bag. It definitely helps me recover quickly from my intense lunch break workouts.

During racing season, I need to be lean and lighter. Even one pound of extra weight can alter my upper performance on the OCR obstacles. So, to help me stay lean, I take Beverly’s Lean Out. It helps me burn fat from the extra food I’m eating while in intense training. It keeps me soaring though the upper body obstacles.

Last, I truly believe in vitamins to keep me feeling good and keep my immune system strong. When racing I need something extra potent. I’ve worked too hard to get where I’m at so I’m not taking any chances on being sluggish. Race season, I take Beverly’s Super Pak.


Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

At a Glance: Doug Ludmann

Age: 45

Occupation: Self Employed Lighting Designer- specializing in high end resort developments

Family: Wife of 20 years and a 15 year old son

Current Residence: Fort Mitchell, KY

Years training (total): 32 years

Height: 5'11" Weight: Off-Season 180, Contest 165

Favorite Bodybuilding Meal: I absolutely love making pancakes out of UMP and egg whites. Sometimes I'll mix in some ground flax or almond flour. You really can't screw them up!

Favorite supplements: Up-Lift, Muscle Synergy and Glutamine Select for my workouts. Muscle Provider post workout (MP is my favorite for post workouts because it's not filling so I can still consume a meal quickly thereafter); Quadracarn, Ultra 40 and Mass Amino Acids all day.

What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly supplements before? UMP - there is no better meal substitute.

Music: Shinedown, Tool, Korn

Most Inspiring Book: The Book Thief

Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: Waterskiing, Paddle boarding


There I was, all 5’1”, 79 pounds of me asking my father to send me to weight lifting camp the summer prior to my freshman year of high school. Looking back, I’m not sure what I was thinking, but now realize what my father was probably thinking- but he sent me anyway. I still remember the looks on the coaches who ran the camp when I walked in. I didn’t even know which way to lay on the bench, and that 45lb bar felt like a ton, but I didn’t care. Even though I was clueless about weight training, deep down inside me, I knew this was where I belonged.

Now, at 45 years old, I still feel the same when I walk into the gym. Hopefully, by writing this article I will motivate at least one person to step out of their comfort zone and step into a gym for the first time – or go back to the gym after a long layoff. Regardless, I urge you to step out of your comfort zone and head to your local gym.

In high school I was a runner; sure, I lifted weights but I was a runner. My college recreation center was amazing and I frequented the gym there, but still my focus was as a runner. After graduation, yes, still a runner, lifting on the side- 5k, 10k, half marathons, ultra-marathons- you name it I ran it!

I was introduced to Beverly International in 2002 at the Gold’s Gym in Alexandria, KY and upon tasting UMP I have never considered any other brand. As a runner I used Glutamine Select immediately post run and UMP soon thereafter. I started to learn how to properly fuel my body from the No Nonsense magazine. I’d read every word in each magazine making notes on how people trained; their favorite lifts, and their splits. An amazing thing happened, the more I lifted, the better my running became. I was able to go further and faster. The stronger I became the faster I got.

I started running at age 13. Twenty six years later, yes 26 years later, I won my first race. Most people would have given up by that point, but let me say that 26 years of training for that first win made it that much sweeter. That year I was able to win multiple races, finishing up 2012 by winning a 30-mile road race in cold, windy, rainy conditions. Then a few years later, at 42 years old, I hit a new personal best at the marathon distance completing the Flying Pig Marathon at 2 hours and 50 minutes.

A week after that race I decided I wanted to enter a bodybuilding show. Talk about stepping out of my comfort zone! I sent in my entry for the NPC Kentucky Open in August, 2015, but a week before the show my appendix had different ideas. Post-surgery I focused on recovery and realized that the Natural Northern Kentucky was coming up. I began preparing as soon as I was allowed to get back to lifting. I made up for lost time with my diet and training and came into that October show completely conditioned. I won my class, but missed out on an overall win in the Mens Physique division.

Next, I prepped for the Northern Kentucky Grand Prix the following spring and came in as one of the best conditioned in my division. I won the Masters Mens Physique, but that was it. I was just too small to win the open. I competed in two more shows where I sacrificed conditioning for a little more size and missed the top spot due to not being lean enough. Remember, it took me 26 years of running before I won my first race, so I wasn’t about to give up yet.

I went back to my key bodybuilding info resource, Beverly’s No Nonsense magazine, and came across an article on Dave Uhlman. I asked around and couldn’t find anyone who did not praise his physique coaching ability. Something that really struck my interest was that he was still stepping on stage in his 40s!!!

I contacted Dave 10 weeks out from my upcoming show, the NGA Kentucky Natural Classic. He immediately went to work refining my diet and training. For the first time, I started gaining muscle mass while I lost fat. Dave had me working harder in the gym and eating more than I ever had before leading up to a contest. I came into that show with a physique unlike anything I ever imagined I’d have. I was both “full” and “hard”. I won my class, the Masters class and “finally” took that elusive overall spot in the open Mens Physique division, earning my NGA Pro Card at 44 years old

I need to mention how different Dave’s approach to “Peak Week” was than anything I had done before. He was very observant to how my body reacted to different levels of carbs and proteins and utilized specific Beverly supplements based on my diet. He had me constantly supplementing with a wide variety of Beverly products. Ultra 40, Mass Aminos, EFA Gold, Muscle Synergy, Muscle Provider, UMP, Up-Lift and Quadracarn were all essential during the prep. Now to get back to “Peak Week”, it was amazing… No major changes! We did the work early to get lean and just continued with the same program during the final week.

Next, I would step out of my comfort zone once again. If anyone ever deserved the title “chicken legs” it was me. Genetically my legs are long and skinny. But with the advent of the classic physique category, I wanted to try it. My next time on stage I would not have long board shorts to hide my legs.

Dave and I went right back to work. I leaned out quickly and yet again on Dave’s diet was able to build muscle mass and lose fat. My upper body, even my lower back where I tended to hold the last of my fat leaned out nicely. However, my legs were not leaning out like the rest of my body. Dave switched my workouts up to where I trained legs twice a week, Quads on Monday and Hamstrings on Friday. It was an absolute struggle, but after months of leg workouts, posing, and extremely clean eating, we got my legs to a respectable size and lean enough to step on stage in Classic Physique. I think the hour-long posing sessions that Dave put me through twice a week played a large role in getting my legs into contest shape. I was actually getting more sore from posing than from my workouts.

I had hit a new low body fat level and went into the Kentucky Natural Classic leaner than ever. I was able to win my weight class, the Masters class, and again the overall top spot, but this time in Classic Physique, earning a NGA Pro Card in a second category. I also won the Pro Mens Physique Class. I’ve included my diet, supplement and workout plans in this article so you can see exactly how I did it.


I could have never walked on stage that conditioned and that full had it not been for Dave Uhlman and Beverly International. Putting your faith in someone is not easy, but once you find someone you can trust as a coach, you must let them do what you hired them to do! And with Beverly, I trust I’m getting perfectly clean supplements that help stimulate my metabolism to lose fat and assist me in building/maintaining muscle.

Prepping to step on stage is one of the hardest things anyone will do and that’s coming from someone who has trained for ultra-marathons. It takes the same persistence and hard work, but it also takes months of 100% discipline in your diet. And most importantly you have to be ready to step out of your comfort zone and pretty much live out of that comfort zone for a few months.



Every week’s workout varies, but this is a good example.

SS denotes superset.


Monday: Legs - focus on Quads

• Single Leg Extensions - 3 sets to warm up
• Leg Press (feet low on plate) - 5 x 16,12,10,6,6
• Elevated-heel Squats - 5 x 8-12 (increasing weight each set)
• Hack Squat – 7 x 16,12,10,8,6,10,16
• Leg Extension - 5 x 20
• Seated Calf Raise - 5 x 20


Tuesday: Chest – focus on upper chest with higher reps

• Incline Bench - 3 sets with just the bar to warm up
• Incline DB Press - 5 x 16,12,10,8,6
• Incline Cable Flyes - 5 x 16
• Incline DB Svend Press - 3 x 10-12
• Low Incline Around the Worlds – 3 x 12
SS Pushup (on exercise ball) - 3 x 12
• DB Pullover – 3 x 10-12
• Underhand DB Front Raise (targeting upper chest) - 5 x 12 each side


Wednesday: Back – squeeze each rep

• Straight Arm Pulldown - 3 sets to warm up and stretch
• Deadlift - 5 x 8-12 (increasing weight)
• Close Grip Seated Row - 5 x 8-12
• Bentover Row (with close, underhand grip) - 5 x 16,14,12,10,8
• Parallel Grip Pulldown (heavy) - 3 x 10-12 reps
• One-Arm Dumbbell Row - 3 drop sets x 6 (18 reps total)
• Pullup (varying grip) - 3 sets to failure


Thursday: Shoulders and Biceps - so many people forget about the eccentric movement especially while doing shoulders. Making the lifts as hard as possible is the goal here.

• Standing Military Press - 3 sets with just the bar to warm up
• DB Press - 5 x 16,12,10,8,6
SS with Seated Dumbbell Curl - 5 sets of 12
• Arnold Press - 3 x 8-12
SS Concentration Curl - 3 x 12
• Upright Row (light) - 5 x 12-16
SS Seated Laterals (heavy) - 5 x 8-12
• Front DB Raise – 3 x 8-12
SS Cable Front Raise - 3 x 12-16
• Landmine Press - 5 x 12-16 (each arm to burn out the delts)

Friday: Legs - focus on Hamstrings

• Walking Lunge – 3 sets to warm (no weight)
• Squat - 5 x 16,12,10,8,6
• Leg Press (feet high on plate) - 5 x 16,12,10,8,6
• DB Walking Squats - 5 x 20 steps
• V Squat Machine - 3 drop sets of 6 (18 reps total each set)
• Lying Leg Curl - 5 x 12-16
• Standing Calf Raises - 3 x 20


Saturday: Rest

Sunday: Chest and Triceps - slow and heavy- it’s Sunday take your time and enjoy

• Bench Press - 3 sets with just the bar to warm up
• Flat DB Press - 7 x 16,12,10,8,6,10,12
• Flat DB Svend Press - 5 x 8
• Incline Smith Machine Press – 3 x 8-12
SS High Cable Flyes - 3 x 8-12
• Landmine Press - 3 x 8-12
SS Low Incline Around the Worlds - 3 x 12
• Weighted Dips - 5 sets to failure (heavy)
• Incline Skull Crushers - 3 x 12
SS Rope Extensions - 3 x 12


Note: I do core workouts after my fasted cardio focusing on abs one day and obliques the next. I normally do these as my breakfast cooks.

Diet & Supplements




My diet does not vary too much from in season to off season. Quantities may change, but the types of foods stay pretty much the same.

I'm a lighting designer specializing in high end resort developments for my occupation. I am lucky enough to work from home most of the time, but I do a lot of travelling which makes meal prep very difficult. I may travel for 5-10 days at a time and when I'm on contest prep I make sure I'm prepared. I bring a lot of my food with me- 6oz bags of tuna, 90-second microwaveable rice, rice cakes and all my supplements take up the bulk of my travel bag. Eating out can be scary, but I have found that restaurants are very accommodating most of the time. If I can’t find a sushi restaurant or a Chipotle, I'll just ask for a plain chicken breast and broccoli or asparagus on the side.

Before fasted AM cardio: 2 Quadracarn, 2 Lean Out, black coffee

Meal 1: 1 cup egg whites, 1 whole egg, 1 cup spinach, 4 pieces sprouted grain bread, 1/2 grapefruit

  • 2 FitTabs, 2 EFA Gold

Meal 2: 2 scoops UMP, 1 cup Kodiak Cake mix, 2 tbsp ground flax, 1 cup egg whites mixed with enough water to make pancakes;
or 6oz chicken, 140 grams white rice

  • 8 Mass Aminos and 8 Ultra 40 (the Mass/Ultra 40 stack is one of the keys to building muscle while leaning out at the same time)

Meal 3: 6oz tuna, 200 grams rice, 1 cup green beans

  • 8 Ultra 40, 8 Mass Aminos

Pre Workout: 2 Quadracarn, 2 Lean Out, 10 Muscle Synergy tablets

Intra Workout: 1 scoop Up-Lift, 2 scoops Creatine Select, 2 scoops Glutamine Select

Meal 4 (post workout): 2 scoops Muscle Provider, 1 sprouted grain English muffin

Meal 5: 8oz chicken, turkey, or fish, 10 small red potatoes with garlic, 10 asparagus spears

  • 8 Ultra 40, 8 Mass Aminos

Meal 6 (bedtime): 2 scoops UMP, 1 cup egg whites, 1 tbsp peanut butter, blended together with ice

  • 6 Muscle Synergy tablets


Men’s Physique Diet, Supplements, and Training

At a Glance: Joe Lewandowski

Age: 23

Occupation or Education: Student at Kent State University, majoring in Exercise Science.

Family: Sandi (mother), Joe (father), Mike (brother)

Current Residence: Hudson, OH

Years training (total): 8 years

Height: 6′3″

Weight: 215 pounds (off-season); 195 pounds (contest)

Favorite Bodybuilding or Fitness Meal: Grilled chicken, sweet potatoes and green beans

In your music player: Drake, Bone Thugs-NHarmony and J. Cole

Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: Spending time with family and friends, golfing, swimming and anything outdoors.

Words to live by: You don’t get what you wish for; you get what you work for

Ever since I can remember, I have been involved with athletics or some sort of competition. I have played just about every sport there is at one time or another. I even received a college scholarship for baseball. I started weight lifting in my early teenage years to become stronger for sports. During that time, I didn’t pay any attention at all to nutrition. As my baseball career came to an end, I really got interested in bodybuilding. I started to concentrate on my training and nutrition. I even changed my major to Exercise Science.

I became addicted to seeing improvements in my physique and the more I improved the harder I would push for further gains. My self-esteem improved and I was now much more confident in myself in every aspect of my life. But, it wasn’t until this past year that I finally got the courage to step out of my comfort zone and commit to stepping on stage.

After comparing my physique to that of the winning bodybuilders, I came to the conclusion that Men’s Physique would be a better fit for me. I knew I neededhelp if I wanted to compete. I asked some successful local competitors who they considered the best trainerin the area. They recommended Dave Liberman. I got in touch with Dave and started working with him. Hebroke down every phase for me including training, supplementation, nutrition, posing and everything else thatwent into being a successful competitor. Dave was also the person who introduced me to the remarkable productsof Beverly International. These supplements helped me obtain a physique I would have never imagined possiblefor myself. Everything came together for me and I was able to take first place in my class and first overallin the NPC Natural Eastern USA Championships, and first place in my class at the NPC Natural Ohio. Here’s an outline of my entire program – diet, supplements, training, cardio, and presentation.

Contest diet 12 weeks out

Diet I started my serious contest diet 12 weeks out. I ate a total of 6 meals throughout the day, taking in about 2,400 calories each day. The majority of my carbs were eaten earlier in the day to ensure I would have the energy to fuel my workouts. My macronutrient breakdown was approximately 50-60% protein, 30-40% complex carbohydrates, and 10% or less fats.

Here is an overview of my diet plan:
Meal 1: 6 egg whites; 1 cup oatmeal
Total Calories ~320
Meal 2: 8 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast; 6 ounces yam; salad
Total Calories ~470
Meal 3 8 oz. cod; 1 cup brown rice
Total Calories ~450
Meal 4: 8 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast; 4 oz. yam; onions, green beans
Total Calories ~580
Post Workout 2 scoops Muscle Provider in water
Total Calories ~220
Meal 5: 8 oz. boneless skinless chicken breast; (stir fry with broccoli), salad
Total Calories ~300
Meal 6 6-egg-whites
Total Calories ~120
2,460 Total Daily Caloric Intake
Lean Out: 2 capsules before each meal & preworkout for fat reducing benefits
7-Keto Musclean: 2 capsules taken before breakfast & dinner to improve metabolic rate
Mass Amino Acids: 4 tablets taken after each meal to help support & preserve lean muscle mass
Muscle Provider (chocolate): Taken immediately after my workout to provide my body with a fast acting protein source
Glutamine Select: Taken during training and two other times during the day to help with endurance and muscle recovery

Training 5 days a week

During the 12 weeks of my contest preparation I weight trained 5 days a week. I rotated my workouts each week to keep my body guessing and making sure I hit that muscle group from all different angles. I kept my rep range at 12-15 and my rest periods at 60-90 seconds.

Along with this, I did an ab workout every other day in the gym. Here is an example of my training routine:
Day One: Arms (Triceps & Biceps)
Triceps Workout:
Lying Triceps Extensions: 5 sets of 12-15 reps
Triceps Cable Pushdowns: 5 x 12-15
Triceps Dip Machine: 5 x 12-15 (last set do a drop set)
Dumbbell Triceps Kickbacks: 4 x 12
Biceps Workout:
Preacher Bench Curls with EZ Curl Bar: 5 x 12-15
Seated Alternating Dumbbell Curls: 5 x 12-15
Dumbbell Concentration Curls: 4 x 12
Day Two – Legs (Quads)
Ride Stationary Bike: 10-minute warm-up at a moderate pace
Leg Extension: 2 sets of 15–20 reps (warm-up with very light weight)
Hack Squats (heels together, toes pointed out): 5 x 12-15 (every third workout do a drop set on the last set)
Leg Press (wide stance, toes pointed out): 5 x 12-15
Dumbbell Lunges: 5 x 12-15 supersetted with
Leg Extension: 5 x 12-15 (last set do a drop set)
Day Three – Shoulders & Hamstrings
Shoulders Workout:
Smith Machine Military Press (behind the neck): 5 sets of 12–15 reps supersetted with
Standing Dumbbell Side Laterals: 5 x 12-15
One-arm Dumbbell Laterals (leaning to one side while holding onto a stationary pole or machine): 4 x 12
Shoulder Press Machine: 5 x 12-15 (last set do a drop set)
Hamstrings Workout:
Lying Leg Curls: 5 sets of 12 – 15 reps (last set do a drop set) supersetted with
Stiff-Legged Dumbbell Dead Lifts: 5 x 12-15
Standing Leg Curl: 4 x 12 (non-stop)
Day Four – Back
Seated Cable Rows: 5 sets of 12 – 15 reps (drop set on last set)
Front Lat Pulldowns: 5 x 12-15
Dumbell Rows: 4 x 12-15 (non-stop)
Hammer Strength Back Rows: 5 x 12-15
Lat Pulldowns (to the back of neck): 5 x 12-15
Day Five – Chest & Calves
Chest Workout:
Incline Bench Press: 5 sets of 12 – 15 reps supersetted with
Incline Dumbell Flys: 5 x 12-15
Chest Press Machine: 5 x 12-15
Peck Deck Machine: 5 x 12-15 (last set do a drop set)
Calf Workout:
Seated Calf Raises: 5 sets of 20 – 25 reps supersetted with
Leg Press Calf Raises: 5 x 20-25
Standing Calf Raises: 5 x 20-25
Abs: Every other day
Incline Sit Ups: 1 set of as many as you can do
Leg Kicks: 2 sets of as many as you can do
Flat Sit Ups: 1 set of as many as you can do


I kept my cardio very simple throughout my 12-week contest prep. I did cardio 4 days a week and rotated the stair-stepper, the elliptical trainer and walking at an incline on the treadmill. I did each at a steady pace for 30 minutes.During each session I made sure my intensity was allowing me to hit 65-80% of my max heart rate, which is an optimal zone for fat burning. Lastly, I did all cardio on an empty stomach either first thing in the morning or after weight training.

Stage Presentation

The best presentation tip that I can give is to always smile and act confident while you’re on stage.The judges are always watching you, even if youthink they are only paying attention to the competitor at center stage. After all the training and dieting you’ve done, being on stage should be themost rewarding and enjoyable part of your journey.

Lastly, make sure to practice every aspect of your routine. It helped me tremendously not only with my performance on stage, but also improved my confidence knowing that I was prepared.

My overall first contest experience is something that I will be able to take with me wherever I go in life. For me, this experience was much more than learning about how to prepare for a competition or learning about proper nutrition. This experience helped me learn more about myself and about what it takes to be successful. Preparing for a competition has been the hardest thing I have ever done. But, at the same time, it has also been the most gratifying experience. It has taught me great self-discipline and shown me that I can do anything that I put my mind to. One piece of advice that I can give others is to take chances and set your goals high. If I had never stepped out of my comfort zone I would have never undergone this life changing experience.

Final Thoughts:

I have come to realize after competing in my first two shows that these competitions were not a destination for me. Instead, they are just part of the journey. I think it is important for every person to look at life that way, and to never settle or be satisfied with what you have accomplished. I believe you need to embrace new challenges and continue to set goals for yourself.

More Advice

from Joe’s Trainer, Dave Liberman

Also, trainer for Nicole Phinney 1st place Open Figure Class A, NPC Natural Eastern.

I’ve been training clients since 1988. I started co-promoting NPC natural, drug tested events with co-promoter, Todd Pember in 1999.

Our 2014 NPC events will be:

Along with personal training I am a contest prep-coach for Bodybuilders, Physique, Figure & Bikini competitors and have had a good deal of success with my clients.Working with Joe is a prime example of what can be accomplished when working with a client that listens to me, follows the pre-contest diet, takes the high quality Beverly International supplements I recommend, and has respectable genetics! It’s been a privilege working with him and I am eager to see him move up to the NPC national level in the very near future! Along with personal training I am a contest prep-coach for Bodybuilders, Physique, Figure & Bikini competitors and have had a good deal of success with my clients. Working with Joe is a prime example of what can be accomplished when working with a client that listens to me, follows the pre-contest diet, takes the high quality “Beverly International” supplements I recommend, and has respectable genetics! It’s been a privilege working with him and I am eager to see him move up to the NPC national level in the very near future!

Weight training program

I train almost all my clients on a five day a week weight training program along with some cardio. In the off season I do not want to have them do too much cardio.

I like to save the bulk of their cardio for precontest. If they do too much, too early, there is no room to up it when necessary. For clients who have battled bodyfat most of their lives, I’ll still have them do off-season cardio, but for the leaner types, I might recommend NO “off-season” cardio, especially if they desire to get bigger (more muscular). In Joe’s case, my advice was to do cardio twice a week in the off-season and step it up to five times a week during contest prep.


In Joe’s case, I had his pre-contest prep diet taking in about 2,400 calories. I never had him go below 2,000. For “off-season” my advice would be to take in 3,500+ calories of GOOD food with OPEN days on the weekends (“Open days” is a nice word for “cheat meals”!).

Again, this is based on his ability to not put on much body fat therefore the extra weekend goodies (while he continues to take in his daily protein quota) will do him good!

Supplements pre-contest

For pre-contest I have most of my clients use Beverly Lean Out, 7-Keto, Glutamine Select, Mass Aminos, & Ultra 40 Liver tabs.

*I save shakes for the Off-Season.* I feel sticking with solid foods is best three months before a contest. If the client must have a shake due to tight scheduling, their job... etc, I have them use Muscle Provider.


I have clients continue using Mass Aminos & Ultra 40 Liver tabs (Aminos & Liver tabs amounts are cut in half of what they take while preparing for their contest). I also add in Muscle Synergy and UMP or Muscle Provider.

Contest Guidance

Choosing the correct division to compete in is extremely individualized! As a promoterof NPC natural contests, I have seen plenty of drug free competitors that could compete in both Men’s Bodybuilding AND Men’s Physique. I also have seen Figure competitors who could also compete in Women’s Physique. Typically, a Bikini competitor has a specific look that is often obvious. If the contest allows crossovers, then I’d advise to try both divisions and see which works better for you. In Joe’s case, it was very clear he was strictly a physique athlete. Given his height, he would need to pack on 20+ pounds of muscle to compete successfully in bodybuilding and if he did do that, he would be too big for men’s physique.

Dawn Reichley

Old School Muscle Building Program for Your Legs, Arms, and Upper Body

Is This Program For You?
1. Experience level at least one year of consistent training; will work best for experienced bodybuilder that needs a change of pace.
2. Goal – gain muscular size and strength
3. Frequency – train on three alternate days a week for 75-90 minutes.
4. Length of program – six weeks
5. Recommended supplements – Ultimate Muscle Protein or Mass Maker and Up-Lift

I wrote about an old school advanced arm building program in the last No Nonsense Magazine (vol 13, #4).

In this issue I’m going to continue with the same theme. This routine is not for the beginner. It’s designed for those who are well established and experienced in bodybuilding, have still not gained the muscular size they desire, and are ready to try something new (well, actually something old). If your progress has been slow lately, I’m certain this routine will help you. I’ll bet it’s different than anything you’ve seen or ever thought about. That’s doesn’t matter if you start growing, does it?

Back in the day, it was always recommended that you take a complete week off from lifting before embarking on a new routine. That’s still a good idea so let’s take a week off and then start fresh next Monday.

Workout Part 1 Legs Arms

You’ll keep your repetitions low, but go for heavy weight.. This squat program goes back to the early 50’s where it was used by the champion lifters to build strength and size. After a thorough warm-up you’re going to do a total of 9 sets of squats each training day! Start with a heavy set of 5 reps. Rest as long as you need, then add 10 lbs and do 4 reps. Keep adding 10 lbs per set as you do a set of 3, then 2, and then 1 rep. Now, reverse the process. Take 10 lbs off and do 2 reps. Keep reducing the weight by 10 lbs and adding one rep per set as you do 3, then 4, and finally 5 repetitions.If you can squat 300 lbs for one rep, here’s what your sets should look like for the first week: warmup, then 240x5, 250x4, 260x3, 270x2, 280x1, 270x2, 260x3, 250x4, 240x5. Then each Monday start your first set of 5 reps with 5 or 10 lbs more than you used the previous week. You won’t believe how much size and strength you’ll add in six weeks.

Squats will be your only leg exercise for the next six weeks. Old school or new school squats are the premier exercise for acquiring growth and power. But you must train them hard and religiously.


After your squats are completed take a 5-10 minute break, then hit arms. Old school arm training means heavy weight, lots of sets, and lower reps than you might be used to. Select three bicep exercises and three tricep exercises. For example: EZ Bar Curl, Incline DB Curl, and Concentration Curl, Pullover and Press, seated EZ Curl Bar Extensions, and Tricep Pushdowns. You don’t have to pick these exact exercises, choose your own, but once you pick your exercises stay with the same ones for the entire six weeks.

Now, you are going to warm-up a little, then pile on the weight and do five repetitions of the first tricep exercise, let’s say the Pullover and Press; when you complete your set walk slowly over to the EZ Curl bar and complete a set of curls for five reps. Then rest for just about one minute. Repeat this until you complete 4 or 5 sets for each exercise. Your reps are low, so the weight must be heavy and you’ll have to do multiple sets to really stimulate growth.

Set up the weights for your next tricep exercise and bicep exercise and follow through in the same manner as before until you complete another 4 or 5 sets each. Then complete the remaining two exercises in the same way.

This is a type of training that you are probably unfamiliar with because it has gone out of vogue, not because it was ineffective, but it was hard work and only a limited number of trainees can stick with it for the entire six weeks. Muscle magazines became very popular just about the time these workouts were producing great results. But the magazines couldn’t promote this type of training, they had to find something more glamorous to promote, even if it was less effective. Thus, one of the most effective training systems in the history of weightlifting became extinct. Well, that’s not going to keep us from getting the gains in size and strength we’re after, is it? Let’s move on to part 2.

Workout Part 2

Some bodybuilders of the past did both parts of the workout on one day. They trained two or three days per week and did the entire workout Parts 1 and 2 on each of those days.

EZ-Bar preacher curl bench with moderate grip. Accentuating negative (slow down movement) will focus more on the biceps with a relaxed grip. To focus on forearms (Brachioradialis) tightening and reverse the grip elbows firm against the preacher bench. While attempting to complete each rep, you feel the need to rise out of the seated position reduce the weight. Continue the strict prayer seated position.

Legs and Upper body

A more suitable alternative, while staying within the old school system of three workouts per week (usually on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday evenings), is to alternate the two parts. One week Monday and Friday will be squats and arms, Wednesday will be squats and upper body. The next week Monday and Friday will be squats and upper body with Wednesday squats and arms. And yes, you’ll do squats on every workout day.

Start with the same squat workout that you did in the previous workout. The reason we start with squats is simply because by the time you have completed your upper body work you will be too tired to do justice to such an essential exercise as the squat. Use the same weights for your squats each workout for a week, then add 10 lbs to the bar the next week for each set.

You can choose your own exercises for upper body, but as a suggestion only, alternate Bench Press and Chins or Pulldowns for your first series. Perform them just like you did the arm exercises, 5 reps on the bench press, walk slowly to the lat machine and perform 5 heavy reps, then rest for about one minute and repeat until 5 sets of each have been performed. Your next two exercises might be High Incline Presses to hit both upper chest and shoulders and Bentover Rows.


This workout program is hard and heavy. It will produce great results but you must work it from three standpoints † exercise, nutrition, and rest. We’ve covered the exercise portion † now for the diet. To gain size and strength you are going to have to eat a lot of nutrient rich food. If you are already are eating a lot, you’ll have to eat more. That’s how you gain.Be sure to include plenty of protein, vegetables or salads, and complex carbohydrates with every meal. A protein supplement is invaluable. Ultimate Muscle Protein, Muscle Provider, or Mass Maker will provide the highest form of protein available. If you like milk, mix your protein shakes with milk instead of water during this bulking phase. Add peanut butter or nut butter to your shake and eat nuts throughout the day. Nuts contain extra protein and healthy fats. The extra calories combined with these heavy workouts will result in superior muscle gains.

Rest as much as possible. Make an all-out effort to sleep at least 8 hours per night. More is better. If you can, relax a little more during the day. (I know, easier said than done, but at least make the effort.)

This is a rigorous workout and it is common to run short of energy. Up-Lift will work wonders for you. Take 2 scoops in cold water about 10 minutes before you start training, then another scoop or even 2 scoops when you complete the squat section. It is really important that you squat each workout day, and the addition of Up-Lift will allow you to continue to train hard and heavy sets on every one of the remaining exercises. Train at night? Don’t worry Up-Lift won’t keep you up. You’ll only be training 3 days a week, so two containers of Up-Lift should take you through the entire six week program.

As I mentioned at the start, this is not a course for beginners to follow; only the bodybuilder with some experience should attempt this schedule. However, if you qualify, train hard and religiously, fuel your body with plenty of food and Beverly protein supplements, rest as much as possible, and give this routine a dedicated six weeks, it is a sure fire muscle building plan to improve your size and strength.


Training Days: M-W-F
Monday: Part 1
1. Squats: 9 x 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 reps
2. Triceps Pullover and Press 4-5x5
3. EZ Bar Curl 4-5x5
4. Seated EZ Curl Triceps Extension 4-5x5
5. Incline DB Curl 4-5x5
6. Tricep Pushdowns 4-5x5
7. Concentration Curl 4-5x5
Wednesday: Part 2
1. Squats: 9 x 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 reps
2. Bench Press: 5x5
3. Lat Pulldown: 5x5
4. High Incline Press: 5x5
5. Bentover Row: 5x5
- repeat Part 1
Then start the following Monday with Part 2.

Movement of the dumbbell is in sync with your breath, as the dumbbell is raised in-hale to maintain a slight arch while looking forward Alternate as above for 5 sets of 5 reps each. You really do not need to add a third combination. Don’t add any more exercises; you’ll only slow down your progress. Work each set as heavy as you can and that’s all you’ll have to do for your part 2 workout.

The Sky Is the Limit with the Right Training, Nutrition and Supplementation

At a Glance: Kathy Kiefer

Age: 51

Occupation: Client Manager/Contract Writer for a healthcare software company

Family: Married for 28 years and have 2 fabulous kids, Ryan-27 and Heather-25

Current Residence: Potomac Falls, VA

Years Training: 28 years active; 6 years of competitive training

Height: 5′6″

Weight: (Off-Season)140lb / (Contest)125lb

Favorite Fitness Meal: Oatmeal and chocolate UMP

Recommendation regarding Beverly Supplements: First of all, have peace of mind knowing these supplements are tried and true, standing the test of time. I have used the Beverly supplements for six years experiencing great results, both with training outcomes and the fact that I have a sensitive system and have never had a compatibility issue with anything from Beverly.  To maximize muscle, you need to dial in on the optimal stack for you and your training so you have the option to call Beverly and talk to a consultant.  They are super helpful and just a phone call away.

Music:  For cardio, I listen to podcasts about health and bodybuilding.  My current favorite podcast is “Muscle Expert Podcast” by Ben Pakulski.  I don’t listen to anything during my strength workouts because I focus on the mind/muscle connection and the task at hand.  During post workout recovery time, I will frequently listen to classical, spa, or meditation music to come down from the workout and let the mind and muscle growth begin.

Most Inspiring Book: My favorite right now is “Maximum Muscle Bible” by Christian Thibaudeau and Paul Carter.

Hobbies and interests outside bodybuilding:  Gardening, shooting at the range and playing with my dogs.

Words to live by:  “Panic slowly”, Dr. Lincoln Gray, distinguished professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders at James Madison University.

Regardless of Age or Disability

It has always been about strength and competition for me. My father built us a barn in our back yard and I got my first pony at the age of seven. From that point, it was immediately about how many hay bales I could throw/stack, how many 50lb bags of feed at a time I could push in the wheelbarrow, etc… I started competing in horse shows immediately. Shortly after that, I became a trainer for dozens of ponies and horses, which continued until I was 21.

All or nothing was my mantra. In 1990, I replaced the 24/7 horse lifestyle with marriage and had two fabulous kids in the following years. I joined a gym to fill the strength and movement passion that I had developed during my horse years. I had this dream of being a bodybuilder but wasn’t sure how to go about it. There wasn’t much info out there in the late 1980’s/early 1990’s, and no Google, but the dream had taken root.

And then something went wrong, very, very wrong. I received the diagnosis that I had Multiple Sclerosis. I had a couple of exacerbations, one of which in 2001 left my right ankle, quad and hamstring permanently damaged (can’t lift it well or hamstring curl it).

Typical of me, I plowed forward and laser-focused 100% on my kids, as they had stellar athletic careers from a very early age. I coached fastpitch softball during my daughter’s early years and then spent the rest of her pre-college years traveling the country with her while she played in softball tournaments most weekends.

My biggest mistake was writing myself off. I saw myself as “worthless” and “broken.” I couldn’t run. I couldn’t jump. I couldn’t play sports. My list of “couldn’ts” was endless. And I had gained too much weight from doing not much.

When my daughter, my youngest child, left for college in 2011 I had a large amount of spare time on my hands. I had no more softball practice, games, workouts, training to take her to. I had time. I needed a replacement.

And then something went right, very, very right. I changed my perspective. Instead of focusing on what I couldn’t do, I decided to set out on a new adventure called “what can I do”. 90% of my body was still fully functional and being held prisoner by my 10% of disability. Well, a leg is maybe more than 10% but this is how I conceptualized it.

I was a bumbling tripping mess who could not walk on a treadmill without holding on for dear life. But I persevered and hired a personal trainer at my local Gold’s Gym. My goal was not weight loss, but just gaining function. However, I figured out how to lose weight along the way and dropped 60lb in just six months. I honestly had NO idea I had that much to lose but did not argue with that result!

With the rapid weight loss and progression from lifting weights, I was hooked and living full-on in the bodybuilding lifestyle. And my physical disability was diminishing! People started telling me I should compete. Wait, what?? I had written that dream off years ago. But why not go for it. I got an online trainer for my first competition and that is where I got introduced to Beverly Supplements. I jumped right into Super Pak, as well as Glutamine Select and UMP daily. These supplements made an immediate impact on my performance and development, and I am still taking them today. Other Beverly supplements come and go in my program depending on where I am in my competition prep schedule but are just as impactful for me when it is time to add them in each season.

After my first few competitions in 2013, I fell in love with the challenge of the stage. It was then that I had fortune of finding an incredible competition prep trainer I could work with in person – Jason Fuller with Xtremely Fit. I am not a typical client with my unique training limitations, but Jason works through this. We train all year round and he has seen me through several shows each year including the thrill and excitement of competing at the NPC Masters Nationals in 2016 and 2017. Currently I am full steam ahead- body under construction working for the 2019 Figure competition season. I am so pleased with the significant progress I make each year. Although disability and age are not in my favor for stellar results on stage, I am living my dream. Every day. And Beverly supplements have helped me every step of the way.


Note: I have some food intolerances and sensitivities so this may seem boring, but I just don’t need variety. I have a formula of simple food that provides me with optimal performance and that is all I need. The food stays pretty much the same all year; the amount is adjusted depending on the time of year.

5 days week

Meal 1: ¼ cup oatmeal, 5 egg whites, spinach, grated ginger & cinnamon

Meal 2: ¼ cup oatmeal, 3 oz. cod, ½ c blueberries

Meal 3: 4 oz. wild salmon, ½ cup rice (black or jasmine), 1 c broccoli

Meal 4: 3 oz. cod or haddock, ½ cup blueberries

Meal 5: 5 oz. wild salmon, ½ cup rice, 1 cup Brussels sprouts or green beans

Meal 6: ¼ cup oatmeal, 2 oz. cod, tsp fish oil

2 days week

Meal 1: ½ cup oatmeal, 2 eggs, 1 cup cauliflower

Meal 2: 3 oz. cod or haddock, ½ cup green beans, ½ grapefruit

Meal 3:4 oz. orange roughy, 1 cup green beans, spinach

Meal 4: 5 oz. orange roughy, ½ cup blueberries

Meal 5: 4 oz. wild salmon, 2 cup broccoli

Meal 6: 3 oz. cod, 1 cup broccoli & spinach, tsp fish oil

UMP is substituted for a protein in any of the above meals, added before or after a workout, or as a treat before bed.


Dawn Reichley

Kathy NPC Masters Nationals

Supplement Schedule

  • Density – I take Density starting 8-10 weeks out from a competition. I take 3 with breakfast, 3 with lunch, 3 pre-workout and 3 before bed and continue for a few weeks post competition to get rebalanced and transition back into a more plentiful diet.
  • Glutamine Select – I take a scoop after morning cardio, after lunch, and again after workouts. It is a great midday pick-me-up and gives me assurance I am getting the BCAA spike and some glutamine throughout the day.
  • Mass Aminos – I take 3 with breakfast, 3 with lunch, 4 pre-workout and 3 before bed during off season, and replace with Density 8-10 weeks before a competition
  • Quadracarn – I take 3x daily during contest prep season to assist with leaning out, on the same schedule as Density starting 8-10 weeks out and then a few weeks post competition.
  • Super Pak – I take daily with breakfast. I train super hard and have a narrow diet with various food sensitivities and intolerances and I know Super Pak has me covered. I think of it like back when I was pregnant. If I missed taking my prenatal vitamin in the morning I was exhausted and doomed for the day. Super Pak is like my prenatal vitamins! A must have!
  • UMP – I take as a meal replacement, around workouts and sometimes as a treat before bed. This is a fast acting and sustained release protein but it goes way beyond just the need for protein. UMP is an incredible fit for my training and lifestyle. It is the best tasting, best textured, easiest to blend, easy on my stomach, no bloating protein supplement I have ever found. I add just enough water to stir into a pudding and that is it. It is so easy to travel with. Just put a scoop of UMP in a Ziploc bag, along with a bottle of water, a disposable coffee cup and a plastic spoon and take to meetings, car rides, ball fields, airplanes, everywhere! It has truly been my simple go-to for years. My favorite flavors are chocolate and graham cracker. Sometimes I blend them together, sprinkle with espresso granules or sprinkle with cinnamon. I keep it simple.

Cardio Schedule

Note: We believe with my age and disability, I do best to keep moving and move often. I have a sedentary desk job so high frequency of workouts and movement are key.

Morning: Fasted cardio every day, most often using the stepmill. Yes – every day, all year. Duration is usually somewhere between 25 and 50 minutes, just depends on the time of season and competition prep. I use this time to absorb into a podcast to make dual use of this wonderful time each morning. It provides a great mental flow of energy, as well as the desired training effect. After cardio, I do some body weight functional training and mobility work like bosu squats, walking lunges, and band work for back and shoulder mobility. I also add some ab work a few mornings a week.

Pre workout: Row for 10 minutes.

Post workout: Depends on time of year. Sometimes we add additional cardio during prep season.

Training Schedule

Lift 6X per week, group conditioning 1X week, Bikram Yoga 1X week, and graston/ART (soft tissue mobilization and active release technique) 1 or 2X week.

Most lifting sessions are 5 sets of 12-15 reps each, although we periodize reps and have heavier sessions with 8-10 reps and lighter sessions with 20 reps. However, most leg work is in the high rep range.

Monday & Thursday – I train with Jason and most of these days are a mix of back/biceps on one day, chest/triceps on another, and shoulders added in. Most often, I have a training partner so we super set or giant set many of our movements. Drop sets are also used. This training split is very effective as we hit body parts several times during the week with a variety of exercises and angles. On Tuesdays, we do group conditioning following the workout.

Wednesday – Leg workout with Jason, again a mix of quad/ham/glute each week. Typical movements are squats, lunges, leg extension and seated ham curls.

Thursday – Bikram Yoga

Friday – Shoulder workout, usually consisting of barbell or rack presses, as well as high rep supersets and drop sets with cables or dumbells doing front raise, lateral raise and rear delts.

Saturday – Back workout usually doing rack pulls, and a variety of pull ups, pull downs and row variations. And sometimes I add another yoga session.

Sunday – High volume leg workout with squats, leg press, hack squats and reverse hack squats.

Presentation Tips

Understand the criteria for the organization you are competing in. Deliver what the judges expect to see. But most of all, be yourself. Practice, practice, practice several times a week for weeks leading up to your show. For several weeks out, I wear my heels around the house, I cook in them, do chores in them. With my disability, walking in heels is very difficult so I just make heels part of my daily routine. Don’t be shy about shooting video of your posing practice. Watch yourself over and over. I have also found it helpful to set an interval timer onmy phone to practice quarter turns. Smile, be confident and deliver your package that you have worked so hard to prepare. Be on point with your suit selection, tanning, makeup, nails, jewelry and hair. This is as much a beauty contest as it is a physique contest. Don’t cut any corners. And just shine.

Final Thoughts

I have competed in many Figure shows, a few each year for the last six years. I have learned that every competition preparation is different, so keep an open and flexible mind and be ready for the curveballs that are always coming. Keep educating yourself on the process and keep learning. And remember it is you vs. you, keep working hard, be consistent. The stage has taught me so much about self-confidence and self presentation which has translated into my everyday life and to my job. It has forever made a positive change in my life. But most important for me, is my time in the gym each day. That is where the real win is. Each day is like Christmas morning, you never know what package of delight will come with that day’s workout. I am stronger and more fit and better than ever, better every day. With the right training, nutrition and supplementation the sky is the limit regardless of age or disability.

Dawn Reichley

Bodybuilder to Men’s Physique Competition


At a Glance: Steve Mousharbash

Age: 28

Occupation / Education: Self-employed; bachelor’s degree in Building Construction Management, Minor in Business.

Hometown: Jacksonville, Florida

Height: 6′0″

Off season weight: 210; Competition weight: 185

Years training: 12 years

Favorite Bodybuilding Meal: Steak and sweet potatoes with cinnamon and stevia What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly International supplements before? I have always recommended UMP, Muscle Provider and Glutamine Select for building muscle. For fat loss I recommend Lean Out and 7-Keto, they are the safest and most effective fat burners out there.

In your CD player: It seems that I get asked this question at the gym just as much as what supplements I take and what I eat. I like a mix of things. When pumping iron, I like something upbeat and heavy, on the the stairmaster I listen to classical piano. When I am on the track doing sprint and agility work, I like to listen to hip hop. Long distance runs, country or jazz.

Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: Sitting down at the piano and playing

Most Inspiring Book: The Bible

Words to live by: 4.Phil 4:13: I can do everything through him who gives me strength.


When I reflect on my life, I am forever indebted to teachers, coaches and mentors who offered their wisdom, encouragement, training and guidance.

I grew up in a very structured and disciplined household. My mom was an educator who believed in excellence. She taught me to always strive for a balanced life. She emphasized that having a good head on your shoulders was far more valuable than just being great at sports.

Here’s How I Did It nutrition and physical training

Still, I did play sports from the time I could walk all the way into college, but, because of her I also learned how to use time management to keep my grades high. I also took piano lessons for 10 years. Learning how to manage sports, grades, piano, and other interests at a young age helped mold me into what I hope is a disciplined, well rounded individual.

Good grades through high school supported my admission to the University of North Florida and I graduated cumma sum laude with a B.S. in Building Construction Management and minor in Business Management. I was fortunate to obtain experience in construction project management while in college. Recently, I have been able to transfer those specific skills, problem solving ability, and hard work into co-founding a business in fine art brokerage, transport and exhibit installation.

Regular participation in athletics required maintenance of proper health, nutrition and disciplined physical training. I was always intrigued by the effects of diet on athletic performace and musculature. I maintained a daily workout routine through college along with a full time job. But it was only when I was asked by a friend to cook his food to help him prepare for a show that I became interested in competing in bodybuilding myself. I decided to get as muscularly big as possible, and did just that. I ate like a machine and used just about every product that Beverly International offered to prepare for the 2010 all-natural MuscleMania Universe show in Miami, FL. I placed third of eighteen competitors in my weight class. But, I felt like a moving wall walking around at 240 pounds. I not only found it difficult to run, but realized that all of a sudden I was intimmidating to many people, even my friends.

Lucky for me, I found out that the NPC was starting a "Men’s Physique" division, basically the "beach body look" in 2011. It seemed like a good fit for my fitness goals. I stopped lifting for mass and started lifting for conditioning, targeted my Beverly International supplement program to fat loss and lean muscularity, found a good trainer, and by using HIIT training; I dropped fifty pounds (240 to 190 pounds) in five months and felt fantastic. I placed first in the Men’s Physique division at the 2011 Dexter Jackson Classic. Now I had demonstrated that Beverly International products work both for gaining mass and for chiseled reduction to achieve specific results.

More on the NPC Mens Physique Division and How I Did It

I think the Men’s Physique division is a great fit for me, and in fact, anyone because it promotes living a healthier lifestyle and it allows you to stay in great condition all year round! I also feel the Men’s Physique division is more of what society is leaning towards as far as a leaner, healthier physique is concerned. One thing that really stood out for me is the comradery of all the competitors. In bodybuilding it seemed like everybody wants to one up you. In Men’s Physique everyone is supporting each other and it’s like we’re just a bunch of friends going out on stage to have a blast! I encourage anyone that has ever thought about competing to start in the NPC Men’s physique division. There are some great guys to get to know and it is quite possible you will create many long term friendships along the way.

After submitting my article to Beverly International, Sandy asked me, How many pounds did you have to lose to get into Men’s Physique contest shape?

This was an interesting question. My first competition in the Men’s Physique division was May of 2011. I knew the judges were going to be looking for the beach body look, a great six pack and a nice chest and arms. I started my prep in December, 2010. I focused on losing extra bulk that I didn’t need or want for Men’s Physique. I dropped 50 pounds in 5 months, going from 240lbs to walking on stage in May at 190. I placed 6th and was happy with the placing considering I had no real idea of what the judges were looking for. I later had an opportunity to ask the judges how I could improve. Their response was that I was too muscular and that they wanted me to tone down some to where I resembled a physique competitor rather than a pure bodybuilder.
I took their critique to heart, lost another five pounds and placed first at the Dexter Jackson Classic.

Here’s an outline of my contest prep:

6:45 am-7:45 am:
7-Keto, Lean Out and Super Pak; then cardio, Stairmaster, or treadmill.

8am MEAL 1:
½ cup egg whites and 1 scoop Muscle Provider; 1 cup oatmeal (dry measurement), and 2 tablespoons Peanut Butter, 1-2 cups coffee (45-50 grams protein, 60 grams carbs, 18-20 grams fat)

10 am MEAL 2:
6 oz. chicken breast or fish, 1 cup rice, 1 tablespoon olive oil (36 grams Protein, 60 carbs, 10 grams fat)

12:30p.m. MEAL 3:
6 oz. chicken breast or fish, ¾ cup rice, 1 serving veggies (green beans, spinach, cucumber, asparagus, or broccoli)

1 serving of 7 Keto and Lean Out, Ultra 40, Energy Reserve and Up-Lift

workout, then 30 minutes of cardio; I consume a mixture of 2 scoops of Muscle Provider and 2 scoops of Glutamine Select while doing cardio.

3:00 pm MEAL 4:
6 oz. lean ground beef or 6 oz. lean steak, 1 cup rice (36g Protein, 60carbs, 12-16g fat)

5:30 pm MEAL 5:
6 oz. Fish (Salmon 2x/week), ¾ rice, 1 serving veggies (green beans, spinach, cucumber, asparagus, or broccoli), 1 serving of Ultra 40 (36g Protein, 45carbs, 4-8g fat)

7:00 pm Supplements:
1 serving of 7 Keto and Lean Out, Ultra 40

8 pm MEAL 6:
6 oz. chicken or fish, ½ cup of rice (24 grams Protein, 30 carbs)

10:30 pm MEAL 7:
2 scoop UMP protein shake, 2 tbsp peanut butter (50 Protein, 12 carbs, 20 grams fat)

10:45 pm Supplements:
Probiotic, vitamin c, melatonin, Lean Out

As you can see from my diet, I enjoy using all of Beverly’s products; it just depends on the goal I am trying to achieve at that time, whether I am trying to bulk up, or just trying to get shredded. Beverly offers all the products I need! I like to keep things simple; that way I know where I have to make changes and when. That’s why I like Beverly’s products... they keep it basic and list all the ingredients so you know what you’re taking. They don’t have these secret proprietary blends where you don’t know what you’re putting into your body, or even if the product will work or not.

One thing I’ve found now that I’m a competitor at the National level – it doesn’t save you any money by trying to buy cheap products. It’s been my experience that I have had to take much larger quantities of the cheaper products to get even close to the same results that I was able to achieve when using Beverly products. If you’re interested in trying the Men’s Physique division, I definitely recommend investing in Muscle Provider, Glutamine Select, Lean Out, 7-Keto, Super Pak, Quadracarn and Density. As for my schedule with these products, I have found that all of them are best used starting 12 weeks out at small dosages and then adding more of each as it gets closer to show time. Every physical body is different, I have learned many of these techniques by building a good data base for myself, historical data is always great to have, and it gives you something to work from.


Abs, chest and arms are especially important for Men’s Physique. I always start with abs, but more specifically, with obliques. From obliques I move on to 3 different types of abdominal movements. I then perform 3 different movements of calf raises, completing 3 sets for each movement. Once I’ve completed my exercises for abs and calves I then move on to biceps and triceps. I always work bis and tris together and superset each movement.

In a total workout I complete 4 different movements for biceps and triceps and at the end of each movement I do one burnout set to failure.

During contest prep, I generally train 6 days a week, Monday through Saturday.

A typical schedule would be:
Day 1: Abs Calves Bi’s Tri’s
Day 2: Abs Calves Chest Back
Day 3: Abs Calves Legs Delts


Tips for Your Men’s Physique Prep

Board Shorts: I think the brand and color of shorts should be something that complements you, different manufacturers shape and cut the shorts different. As for myself, I was trying to find shorts that would fit my legs and come in enough to fit my waist... No luck! I still had to get my shorts tailored in because of my waist to thigh differential; my waist during contest time gets down to around 27 inches. They just don’t make off the rack shorts like that!

Tan: Before you walk on stage it is very important that you have a nice coat of tanner on. One of the good things about the Physique division is that they are going for a more natural look, so being extremely dark is unnecessary. I generally start tanning several weeks before and then go with 2 coats of Pro Tan. I’ve always used Pro Tan and never had any problems. Carb Load: My carb loading process changes every time I hit the stage. It is much different from how I carb loaded for bodybuilding. When I was bodybuilding I used much heavier carbs. For Men’s Physique I like to stay with lighter carbs such as rice and then switch to sweet potatoes for the last few meals.

Pump Up: My pump up generally takes 5-10 minutes. I don’t want to pump up too much. Pumping up too much causes me to appear too big. Because of this I mainly focus on staying tight. I start with push-ups and then move on to side shoulder raises and then finish with a quick set of biceps and triceps.

Contest Day Bag: PACK YOUR COOLER, you need salt-free rice cakes and peanut butter to get you through the prejudging. You never know the schedule, but these two staples will see you through. Keep a clean towel, it is sometimes slippery with everyone’s oil on the floor and you don’t want it on your feet. You also will need your I-Pod to listen to your music and help you stay relaxed and focused while you wait. Pack hairspray/gel, posing oil or any other preparation products you may need. Make sure you wear loose clothes and flip flops because your tan will bleed onto whatever you are wearing.

Final Thoughts

I have learned to embrace change and try new things, set goals, establish a reasonable routine, schedule it and hold to it even when it becomes difficult. Success comes from hard work, good management, and perseverance (and still more perseverance). Meet all your obligations in life, not just those concerned with your fitness. It’s not just about lifting or doing that extra 10 minutes of cardio, it’s relative to how you carry yourself outside the gym as well. Will I go the extra mile and show up at work on time? Will I make sure to take care of all my obligations without being overwhelmed by other obstacles?

So, it’s not just about being the best on stage it’s about being the best you can be in life too! With your mind strong, your body on point and your spirits high you can achieve anything!

Dawn Reichley

Muscle Building MATH

“There are no shortcuts to muscle development except the intelligent use of dietary principles and the willpower to make it happen,” says John Balik 1 (retired Publisher of Ironman, and one of the first contest prep coaches). You have the willpower. We will provide an intelligent strategy to do it correctly. Get ready to bump your nutrition plan up to a serious level.

Back in the Beginner Program, you kicked things off by watching what you ate, taking in more frequent high-protein meals, adding some more veggies each day, and including some basic supplements. Since you have advanced to an intermediate stage, you are able to push your body to even harder training, so the impact you place on your muscle groups and (more importantly) on your nervous system and metabolism is even greater. Your nutrition needs to be more scientifically directed. We need to calculate starting amounts, test them out, and provide necessary adjustments after viewing the results your unique body has on this program.

“Building a great physique takes time – years, not months,” says Mr. Olympia Lee Haney. 2 “It takes hard work and dedication, both in the gym and in the kitchen.” Grab a pencil, notepad and calculator so we can get to work!

Your maintenance calories

The first decision is your daily caloric level (how many calories a day to encourage muscle growth and workout recovery without causing an increase in body fat). To determine your daily food intake, we must base that on your bodyweight, somatotype, metabolic rate and your goals.

Our starting point will be 15 calories per pound of bodyweight. For instance, if you weigh 200 pounds (200x15) that equals 3,000 calories a day. The starting point for women is 13.5. This is a very simplified way to come up with your daily food intake, and it is fairly accurate for many lifters. But let’s look at how we can personalize things. In the following example we are going to use a male is an example, but for females just remember that your starting estimate is 13.5, rather than 15.

1) Your Somatotype: What is your body type? Although nearly everyone is a bit of more than one somatotype, here is a brief explanation of the three types described by William Herbert Sheldon, Jr. in the 1940s.

  • Ectomorph (small bone-structure, thin body)
  • Mesomorph (naturally muscular build)
  • Endomorph (thick bone structure, tendency to gain body fat)

If you feel that you are a skinny ectomorph, add one to your starting point (from 15 to 16 calories per pound of bodyweight daily). If you are a muscular mesomorph, keep the starting point for now at 15. If you are an endomorph, with a slow metabolism and excess body fat, subtract one from your starting point (from 15 to 14 calories per pound of bodyweight). If you lean just moderately towards ecto or endo, you can go with just a 0.5 adjustment (to 14.5 or 15.5).

2) Your Metabolic Rate: Ectomorphs tend to often have fast metabolic rates. Endomorphs tend to have slow metabolic rates. Mesomorphs tend to be in the middle...but if you feel that yours is very fast add oneto your starting point. If you feel it is slow, subtract one. If it is moderate, go with the 0.5 increase or decrease.

3) How physically busy is your day? Genetics are not the only factor that comes into play. As you would imagine, someone that sits at a desk for most of their day does not burn the same calories as someone that loads heavy crates on a truck or chops wood for ten hours a day. Using the list below, rate your physical calorie-burning lifestyle and make the subtle adjustments listed, if necessary.

  • (long work hours, very physical tiring work, until bedtime)
  • +1 4(pretty busy and tiring at work, fairly relaxing in the evening) +0.5
  • 3 (moderately hard work some of the time, relaxing half of the time) −
  • 2 (some hard work but mostly easy stuff) −0.5
  • 1 (sedentary or just desk work, relaxing at home) −1

Here is an example
Let’s say that you are 150 pounds. You consider yourself definitely a skinny ectomorph. You have a slightly fast metabolism but not enough to feel like you need an adjustment. You do have a hectic warehouse job, which wears you out a bit. Here is your starting point:

  • 15 (average starting point in “Daily Calorie Intake”)
  • +1 (ectomorph)
  • − (metabolic rate not too fast)
  • +0.5 (works fairly hard, about level 4)

16.5 x 150 pounds = 2475 calories a day

You have now determined a starting point for your daily calorie level. The chart below should help you with some math.

BWT 12 12.5 13 13.5 14 14.5 15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18
120 1440 1500 1560 1620 1680 1740 1800 1860 1920 1980 2040 2100 2160
130 1560 1625 1690 1755 1820 1885 1950 2015 2080 2145 2210 2275 2340
140 1680 1750 1820 1890 1960 2030 2100 2170 2240 2310 2380 2450 2520
150 2250 2340 2430 2520 2610 2700 2790 2880 2970 3060 3150 3240
190 2280 2375 2470 2565 2660 2755 2850 2945 3040 3135 3230 3325 3420
200 2400 2500 2600 2700 2800 2900 3000 3100 3200 3300 3400 3500 3600
210 2520 2625 2730 2835 2940 3045 3150 3255 3360 3465 3570 3675 3780
220 2640 2750 2860 2970 3080 3190 3300 3410 3520 3630 3740 3850 3960

Adjustments Based on Experience

As your diet progresses, we need to see if an adjustment of your body composition requires us to change your caloric level after two weeks. If you have gained weight and it is mostly body fat, reduce your caloric intake by 1 per pound of bodyweight (if you were at 14.5, drop to 13.5 calories per pound of bodyweight). If you are losing weight, and it seems like it may be muscle, then increase your caloric intake by 1 per pound (such as jumping from 16.5 to 17.5 calories per pound of bodyweight). We want your body to experience a noticeable change so a half-point adjustment is not necessary. A one-point change in calories is still fairly subtle.

How much of that daily calorie level should be protein?

Your daily calorie intake is made up of protein, carbohydrates, and fat intake. It is best to think of these as two major nutrition areas – construction (protein) and energy (carbs and fat). Protein turnover (the balance between protein synthesis and protein degradation) is a primary concern. Hard training will increase the breakdown. Protein, quality food, and intelligent recovery will support muscle growth. We’ll start with protein, we need to determine the amount of protein consumed daily. The main factor is your goal as far as body composition.

Which of the following goals fits you?

  • Muscle building starting point
    1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight
  • Muscle building and fat burning
    1.75 grams per pound of bodyweight
  • Advanced level training
    2 grams per pound of bodyweight

“If you train [hard], you are going to absolutely break down the muscle tissue,” says retired pro Milos Sarcev. 3 “You are going to lose all of those amino acids. If you do not replenish it, you are going to get smaller than previously.” One gram per pound of bodyweight is the minimum for the average person involved in weight training. For those trying to build muscle, 1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight is a good starting point. Those whose primary goal is to burn body fat or that have found that they have added an exceptional amount of strength and muscle during the beginner program, can consider going to 1.75 grams per pound.

While some experts think a slightly lower protein level is acceptable, Sarcev agrees with some other expert coaches that two grams per pound of bodyweight is required at the advanced level. For now, you should progress at one of the two lower amounts, with 1.5 being the best intermediate level for most.

BWT 1.5 1.75 2
120 180 210 240
130 195 227.5 260
140 210 245 280
150 225 262.5 300
160 240 280 320
170 255 297.5 340
180 270 315 360
190 285 332.5 380
200 300 350 400
210 315 367.5 420
220 330 385 440

So, if you are a 170-pounder wanting to continue building your physique as an intermediate, 255 grams of protein daily should be a major goal of your daily nutrition intake.

The energy macros

Once you know your daily calorie intake and your daily protein intake, we need to do the math to see what will be our start-up energy macros (carbohydrates and fats). The balance that we find most efficient is dividing your energy macros into 30-50% carbohydrates in proportion to 50-70% fats.

Let’s say you are a 210-pound lifter that determined that 15.5 calories per pound of bodyweight was going to be your start-up.
210 (bodyweight) x 15.5 = 3255 calories a day
210 x 1.5 grams = 315 grams of protein a day
315 x 4 = 1260 daily calories made up from protein
3255 (total calories)
− 1260 (protein calories)
= 1995 >(energy (carb and fat) calories)

Math tells this lifter that they have 1995 calories devoted to energy macros. We need to determine how many of those are devoted to carbs and how much is devoted to fat intake. A good starting point for most lifters would be a 40% carb to 60% fat intake. With this calorie amount, we would get 798 calories from carbohydrates, (divide that by 4), and 200 grams (we will round up) consumed daily. For fat intake, they get 1197 calories from fat (divided by 9, since fat has more calories per gram than protein or carbs), and 133 grams of healthy fats.

CARB TO FAT RATIO Carb calories (grams) Fat calories (grams)
30% carbs / 70% fat 598.5 (150 gr) 1396.5 (155 gr)
40% carbs / 60% fat 798 (199.5 gr) 1197 (133 gr)
50% carbs / 50% fat 997.5 (249 gr)  997.5 (111 gr)

As you can see, we also list some slightly altered starting point adjustments – one providing slightly lower carbs and the other a slightly higher percentage of carbs to fat. What should you consider before choosing? Do you have a high body fat level (over 24% for men, over 34% for women). If so, then a slightly reduced carb (30/70) energy macro level might be a good idea. Are you sensitive to carbs? Again, this would be a good reason to start at the 30/70 balance. On the other hand, are you lean and thin-skinned with a fast metabolism? Do you feel that you are weak and rundown if you go on low carbs? If those are the case, then you should consider the 50/50 balance as a starting point. Most people should start out with the 40/60 ratio.

I threw a lot of information your way, and it gets a bit complicated because you need to do the math since I want it to be as personalized as possible. When you are done jot down your number of grams of protein, carbohydrates and fat. Multiply the grams of protein (x4), carb (x4), and fat (x9)...and add them all together. Does this equal your estimated calorie starting point? Hopefully, you added it all up correctly!

Best protein sources

With that formula, you should now understand the basis of a starting diet program. The next step is planning how the grams of protein, carb and fat will be spread throughout your menu. “Eat more but smaller meals throughout the day,” says Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates.4 “I eat 5-6 small meals spaced every 2.5-3 hours apart.” This strategy obviously worked for him and hundreds of thousands of other gym-goers.

The number one rule will be to consume protein frequently throughout the day in multiple doses. “To grow, you need to maintain a constant surplus of growth nutrients in your system,” says IFBB pro Henderson Thorne.5 “This means tipping the scales towards protein, with support from adequate carbohydrates for energy to avoid the scavenging of protein for that purpose.” Protein will be the most important nutrient to each of the meals, regardless if your primary goal is building muscle in the off-season or maintaining muscle while dieting off body fat.

Common whole food sources for protein at each bodybuilding meal includes red meat (beef, buffalo/bison), chicken, turkey, fish, eggs or protein shakes. Dairy products (milk, cheese, cream, yogurt) are also protein sources but need to be limited for some people, due to intolerance (milk allergies).

Protein shakes serve two primary purposes. They provide higher quality protein sources (if made by a trustworthy company) and allow high-protein intake with less time spent in the kitchen. At the very least, you need to include one protein shake a day, although at least two shakes daily makes more sense. You should go with either Ultimate Muscle Protein (UMP) or Muscle Provider.

Muscle Provider is a whey protein hydrolysate and isolate blend that is very quickly absorbed. This makes it perfect for right after your workout. “Hydrolyzed, what does it mean?” says retired IFBB pro and contest prep expert Milos Sarcev.6 “Hydrolyzed is broken down. Hydrolyzed whey is very rapid. It is high quality and I would use it immediately after a workout and you can use it anytime you need quick amino acids.” UMP is sustained-release 80:20 blend of casein:whey (this means it provides some immediate quality protein and also a slow, extended protein source which is good before bed or anytime during the day).

Swedish and Scandinavian Champion/IFBB pro Mats Kardell says,7 “All serious bodybuilders follow high-protein diets, and most also supplement their diets with amino acid capsules or concentrated protein powders.” This should come as no surprise since a high level of essential amino acids in the bloodstream limits muscle breakdown and boosts muscle growth.

The customer-base of Beverly International has experienced great results by adding desiccated liver and amino acids intake throughout the day. This philosophy goes back decades driven by ahead-of-his-time contest prep trainer Vince Gironda.8 “Keep your body constantly supplied with protein so you are in an anabolic or growing state,” said the Iron Guru. “That means that you should keep your body saturated with protein...and the way you do that is have liver tablets every three hours.”

Mr. America winner Dale Adrian agrees.9 “Desiccated liver, in my opinion, is one of the most valuable supplements a person can take, not only for bodybuilding but for anyone, especially those involved in strenuous sports.” The advancement of amino acid tablets, with the highest being peptide-bonded aminos for maximum absorption, allows for great results from a small serving of 3-5 Ultra 40 desiccated liver tablets with 3-5 Mass Amino Acids.

The ideal protein intake daily would include two to four whole food protein servings, and two to three protein shakes, backed-up by liver and amino tablets (3-5 tablets, 5-6 times a day). This obviously varies by how often you can, need to, (and prefer) to eat daily. The other addition would include free-form amino acids (Density, Muscle Mass or Muscularity) during and after training in order to encourage optimal growth and Glutamine Select sipped during training.

Choosing carb sources

“You need to earn your carbs,” says top training expert Charles Poliquin.10 “Various factors will determine how many grams of carbohydrate you can afford to consume. The most relevant are: your levels of muscle mass, the volume and intensity of your training, your percentage of body fat and your insulin sensitivity.”

We will divide our carbohydrates into three categories: starchy carbs, fibrous carbs and fruit/berries.

Common diet choices of starchy carbs include potatoes, rice (white, brown, basmati, jasmine or wild), yams or sweet potatoes, oatmeal, cream of rice, or grits. Starchy carb choices are best placed near training. Red beans and rice are a good combo since the lentils lower the glycemic index and the combo of the two provides a better amino acid balance. Quinoa is an ancient grain that blends protein with a carb source. Couscous tends to be lower in calories than rice or quinoa, contains protein, and is a good flavor variety. Sweet potatoes and yams have a lower glycemic index (particularly if boiled rather than baked).

Fibrous vegetables are also beneficial due to being major sources of vitamin, minerals, and fiber while having psychological value (you can eat a lot if you wish!). “Raw and steamed vegetables are basically free calories for bodybuilders,” says Ms. Olympia, Kim Chizevsky.11 “The benefits they give your body more than compensate for the calories and carbohydrates you’re adding to your daily nutrition.” Common choices include broccoli, green beans, Brussel sprouts, spinach, kale, asparagus, bell peppers, onions, cabbage, and green salads.

We mentioned the final carb category as being fruit and berries. These need to be chosen wisely. Avoid fruit juice as they remove the fiber, decrease nutrients, and make it an extremely high glycemic index beverage. Fruit that should be limited for this reason includes: apples, oranges, bananas, cherries, grapes, mangoes, pears, melons and pineapples. Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries are low in carb calories, high in delicious flavor, and provide an antioxidant reward. Tomatoes (which we often forget are fruit) and grapefruit also are low in carbs and high in nutrition.

Healthy fat consumption

It seems that eating fat would make us fat. However, the truth is that using fats as an energy source does not necessarily promote the storage of fat. High calories and carb levels often encourage body fat increases. Consuming high calorie intakes of both energy macros (carbs and fat) together will also encourage an increase in body fat. Proper fats are needed for health (hence the phrase essential fatty acids).

Excellent fat sources

Beverly’s EFA Gold will ensure that your essential fat needs are covered. Three softgels per serving (once or twice daily) will ensure a healthier balance of proper fats. EFA Gold includes fish oils (EPA and DHA), flaxseed oil, borage seed oil, and a great supply of vitamin E, omega-3, omega-6, and omega-9 fatty acids.

Other healthy fat sources are avocados, macadamia nut oil, coconut oil, organic red palm oil, healthy nuts (macadamias, almonds, walnuts, pecans, brazil nuts and cashews), grass-fed butter, and extra virgin olive oil.

Prepping and scheduling your meals

We will be putting the same type of planning into our food intake. When we categorize different food combinations here are the most common meal groupings.

Protein Shake

Lean Protein/Starchy Carbs/Fibrous Vegetables: This common meal involves mixing together a protein source, some starchy carbs, and fiber-rich veggie sources while keeping it fairly low in fat. Some examples would be:

  • grilled chicken, rice and broccoli
  • sirloin steak, sweet potatoes and asparagus
  • ground beef, quinoa and steamed kale

Lean Protein/Healthy Fats: Quite simply, this is often a typical nutrient-rich but low-carb meal (often to kick off your morning) to drive your daily growth while continuing your fat-burning. Some examples would be:

  • steak and eggs
  • omelette (with turkey bacon, cheese, and mushrooms)
Lean Protein/Salad or Fibrous Vegetables/Healthy Fats: These meals are often later in the day, low in carbs, fairly high in healthy fats, high in (an almost unlimited quantity of) fibrous vegetables. This provides calories, amino acids, fiber, vitamins and minerals, while encouraging the use of body fat and healthy fats as primary fuel sources. Some examples would be:

  • flank steak over mixed green salad, with mac nut oil and red wine vinegar
  • grilled chicken, steamed veggies, EFA Gold
  • ahi tuna grilled over kale and veggies with coconut oil

These are examples. You should personalize your menu based on your goals, preferences, and the number of daily meals you prefer. Some people might like to eat five times daily, others prefer seven or eight meals a day (especially those pursuing weight gain or heavyweight and super-heavyweight men). The basics are: two or three protein shakes a day, half of the meals whole food protein and starchy carbs, a couple meals protein foods and healthy fats (with salad or fibrous veggies). The starchy carb versions are near the training session. On non-training days, they will be placed on the same times they would occur during training days. You have protein throughout the day (boosted by amino acid/desiccated liver if you want to maximize growth).

Against much conventional wisdom, you should consider limiting starchy carbs early in the day. The reason for this is that our body wakes up with a fat-burning process in place using fats as its energy source. Your energy level should be strong and you will be in a state in which you are burning fat. You need to avoid consuming large amounts of starchy carbohydrates (or even more so simple sugars) while consuming protein and healthy fats (steak and eggs or a cheese omelet).

It is best to schedule your starchy carbs around your training, with no significant amounts of carbs in the other meals. For most people two servings is ideal. If you feel the need to have three servings of starchy carbs, you can consider smaller amounts (but still keep them no more than one serving prior to the gym and two servings after training).

The exception would be those with fast metabolisms trying to gain lean weight on their thin body. This ectomorphic crowd may need more starchy carb meals and should choose Mass Maker Ultra as a twice daily protein shake (one scoop of MMU and one scoop of UMP). In fact, this group will require more daily meals (and snacks) in general.

Serious supplements to increase your gains

In addition to the meals and protein shakes, other supplements should be placed in your schedule. A basic multi-vitamin/mineral such as Super Pak or FitTabs should be a part of your breakfast. EFA Gold should be included at least once daily (with breakfast is a good idea) to balance your essential fats. Glutamine Select is a great workout beverage to be sipped between sets, containing not just glutamine, but branched chain amino acids in a powdered form to mix with water.

Charles Poliquin says, “In the recent past, I found that 40 grams of essential aminos with an additional 40 grams of BCAAs worked best to increase my gains in the gyms,”12 Famous nutrition guru and protein expert Dr Eric Serrano recommends consuming BCAAs during your workouts. He suggests a dose of .25 – .35 grams of BCAAs per Kg of bodyweight.

This is why some of the optional supplements, if you want to take Intermediate training a bit further..., would include branched-chain amino acids during training and before bed...either Muscle Mass or Muscularity. Density are high-quality essential amino acid tablets (and are definitely even more useful to those on a lower calorie diet). Muscularity has some added compounds in order to help spare muscle loss from hard training and reduced calorie dieting. If fat loss is a primary goal, Quadracarn is also a great addition providing four different versions of carnitine which helps fat loss, testosterone production and physique enhancement.

Supplements to Increase Your Gains beyond the Intermediate Level

Aminos & Liver Throughout the Day

Mass and Ultra 40 (aminos and liver)

Take 3-5 tablets of each with (or between) meals. The goal is 1 tablet of each for every 10 lbs of bodyweight daily.

Optional: Density (essential amino acids) – 3-5 tablets three times a day.

BCAAs During Workouts

Muscle Mass – Take 3-5 tabs every 10-15 minutes during your workout until you reach your target goal. 1 tablet per 10 lbs of bodyweight will give you the .25g dosage recommended by Dr. Serrano.


Glutamine Select – Mix 2-3 scoops in your water bottle and sip throughout your workout.  Can be stacked with Muscle Mass, 3 scoops of Glutamine Select equates to 10 Muscle Mass tablets.

Fat Loss, Testosterone Production and Physique Enhancement

Quadracarn – Take 3 tabs three times daily on training days and 3 tabs twice daily on non-training days.

Essential Nutrients

Super Pak – pack per day with breakfast; or FitTabs – 2 tablets with breakfast and 2 tablets with dinner.

EFA Gold (essential fatty acids) – 3 softgels with 1 or more meals daily.

So there is a very comprehensive diet, explained in detail, to take you from the Beginning Bodybuilding Phase all the way up to the Advanced Phase in your future. As an Intermediate bodybuilder, you will learn the precise amount of protein, carbs and fat to get in the best shape possible. Keep in mind that you need to check your bodyweight and composition every two weeks. This will tell you if you need to increase or decrease your Daily Calorie Intake. As you pack on more muscle, you will need to keep each powerful muscle fiber well fed. You may also learn that you need to adjust the balance of your carb-to-fat ratio to find out what works perfectly for you. This diet gives you a great starting point.

1) Balik, John. “The Nutrition Counselor,” Muscle Builder/Power, May 1979
2) Haney, Lee. “Ask Lee,” Flex Magazine, February, 2017
3) Sarcev, Milos. “Secrets of the Pros” video series
4) Yates, Dorian. “Get Lean (Supplemental Guide),” Muscle & Fitness, September 1993
5) Thorne, Henderson. “Eat for Growth,”
Flex, December 1994
5) Sarcev, Milos. “"Sports Nutrition Seminar” (YouTube 7/28/13)
7) Kardell, Mats. “Flex Notes: Protein Supplements,” Flex, December 1989
8) Gironda, Vince. “Vince Gironda Nutrition Copyright Robert Torres” (YouTube 3/7/2014)
9) Adrian, Dale. “Dale Adrian Raps on Developing Symmetrical Legs,” (not certain of publisher or date)
10) Poliquin, Charles. “My Take on Carbs”
11) Chizevsky, Kim. “Ask Ms. Olympia,” Flex, January 2001
12) Poliquin, Charles. “Protein Intake for Strength and Mass Gains – Updated”

My first year in Figure

At a Glance: Michelle Brown

Age: 37

Occupation/Education: RN, Manager of Case Management at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. I am also currently pursuing my Doctorate of Nursing Practice at the University of Cincinnati.

Family: Mother of three beautiful girls- Madisyn (17), Brooke (9), Kylie (7). Husband- Derrick.

Current Residence: Crittenden, Kentucky

Years training (total): 3

Height: 5′ 5″

Weight: 140 (Off-Season), 130 (Contest)

Music: While in the gym, I listen to everything from 90’s old school rap to Metallica.

Most Inspiring Book: How Full is Your Bucket? By: Tom Rath and Donald Clifton
This book discusses how the smallest interactions with others affect relationships, productivity, health, and longevity. It helps you increase the positive moments in your life while reducing the negative.Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding:I enjoy spending time with my family on our farm and watching my girls play basketball!

Words to live by: She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future (Proverbs 31:25).

Comprehensive look at my best nutrition, supplement, and training programs

Growing up, I was an active athlete participating in cheerleading, gymnastics, and softball. Upon entering college at Northern Kentucky University, I made the cheerleading team and cheered for the Lady Norse in 1998!

Throughout this time, I was always able to eat whatever and whenever I wanted without fear of gaining weight. McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Subway were my main fast food choices while enjoying college life.

In 1999, I became a teen mother of a beautiful baby girl. As a single mother,
I worked night shift as a Registered Nurse. My poor eating habits and fast food became an even bigger staple in my life. Exercise and fitness were the furthest thing from my mind.

After meeting my husband, having two more amazing daughters via cesarean section, and reaching the “Over 30” mark, my fast food habits and lack of exercise were starting to show in my abdomen and legs. I was gaining too much weight, too fast!

In October 2013, at the age of 33, I stepped on the scale and discovered that I had reached my top pregnancy weight (and this time I wasn’t pregnant.) I was devastated. I made a commitment right then and there to begin a healthy journey to lose the weight.

Three months later, I started attending spinning classes at my local gym, Body Works Gym in Dry Ridge, Kentucky. I also began a crash diet where I consumed only 700-800 calories per day. After a few weeks, the owner of the gym, Justin Baker, encouraged me to attend his nutritional class and start weight lifting/training. Justin customized a meal and supplement plan along with a weight lifting program to fit my goals. By May, I had lost 30 pounds and reduced my body fat significantly!

I enjoyed watching my body change. I was losing fat and adding muscle. I also found that lifting provided stress relief which made my whole life better. I had also begun helping others as they embarked on their weight loss journeys.

After a year of progress and addition of new muscle, Justin encouraged me to train for a competition. I began to train for my first figure competition in May, 2015. Since then I’ve competed in seven contests in 2015 and 2016. Before I get into my results I’d like to give you a comprehensive look at what I’ve found to be my best nutrition, supplement, training and cardio programs.

My daily nutrition plan

Daily Meals

The way my diet changes depends on my physique and how close I am to being stage-ready. Here’s a plan that has worked great for me and I’ll bet that it will work for you too.

Meal 1 (5:30 am): 3 egg whites; – cup plain oatmeal mixed with – scoop of UMP (Cookies & Créme – yum!).

Meal 2 (9:00 am): 2 scoops of Chocolate or Cookies & Créme UMP as a shake or mixed as a pudding. To make UMP into a pudding add 2 scoops of UMP and a little water in a small bowl. Mix. Add a little more water and mix again. Do this until the pudding is the desired consistency. I will usually mix as a pudding if I am in a meeting at work and do not want to distract from the meeting by shaking my shaker bottle!

Meal 3 (12:00 pm): 6 oz. chicken breast, turkey breast, tilapia, or tuna; 2 cups spinach or salad; 2 tbsp. Newman’s Own Lite Balsamic Dressing; 4 oz. sweet potato.

Meal 4 (3:00 pm): 2 scoops of UMP Cookies & Créme made as a shake or pudding.

Meal 5 (6:00 pm): 6 oz. chicken breast, turkey breast, tilapia, or tuna; 2 cups low-carb vegetables (broccoli, asparagus or green peppers).

Meal 6 (9:00 pm): 3 egg whites with 1 whole egg. I have chickens that we raise on our farm and enjoy eating farm fresh eggs!

Water intake: 1 gallon of water throughout the day. Water intake is important to stay hydrated. Water intake changes/ increases the closer you get to peak-week and throughout peak-week itself.

Supplement Schedule
Ultimate Muscle Protein – Meal replacement for meals 2 and 4 and added to my oatmeal at meal 1
Super Pak – One packet daily with meal 2
7-Keto MuscLean – 3 capsules with meals 1 and 3. (Daily total: 6 capsules to reduce body fat and optimize lean muscle mass.)
Lean Out – 3 capsules with meals 1, 3, and 5. (Daily total: 9 capsules to reduce body fat.)
Muscularity – 4 capsules with meals 1, 3, and 6. (Daily total: 12 capsules, BCAAs assist in building lean muscle mass with co-factors for blood sugar regulation and diet support.)
Density – 4 tablets with meals 1, 3, and 6. (Daily total: 12 tablets used to achieve a firm, lean look to the muscle.)

Training & cardio

Weight Training Schedule

Monday: Arms

  • Barbell Curls 3x12
  • Superset: Tricep Pushdown & Lying Cable Curls 3x12
  • Superset: Skull Crushers & Preacher Curls 3x12

Tuesday: Back

  • Chin-ups 3x12 Deadlifts 3x12
  • Dumbbell Row 3x12
  • Straight Arm Pulldown 3x12

Wednesday: Legs

  • Squats 8x12-15
  • Leg Press 2x50
  • Leg Extension 3x12
  • Calf Raise 3x20

Thursday: Shoulders & Traps

  • Shoulder Press 3x12
  • Tri-Set: Side Raises 3x12
  • Front Raises & Bent-Over Raises 3x12
  • Superset: High-Pulls & Reverse Pec Deck 3x12

Friday: Chest

  • Superset: Bench Press & Dumbbell Flye 3x12
  • Superset: Incline Press & Decline Press 3x12
  • Superset: Raised Feet Push-ups & Pec Deck 3x12

Saturday: Glutes & Hamstrings

  • Lying Leg Curl 3x12
  • Stiff-Leg Deadlift 3x12
  • Weighted Walking Lunges 3 laps around gym

Sunday: Rest

Abs: Done during or after weight training every day

  • 60 second Planks
  • 100 Sit-ups
  • 48 Decline Sit-ups with Russian Twists added (until I feel the burn)
  • 12 Hanging Leg Raises
Dawn Reichley

Cardio Schedule

HIIT Training before Weight Training

During contest prep, each of my weight training sessions begin with HIIT training. This is primarily to preserve muscle and burn fat. I typically stick to two forms of HIIT which include the treadmill and the elliptical.

Treadmill: Set the treadmill to intervals. Warm-up by walking at a moderate pace for 2 minutes. Increase your pace to sprint (for me, that is about 10 mph) for 45 seconds. Slow your pace to moderate and walk/rest for 15 seconds. Repeat for 10 minutes making your total including warm-up 12-15 minutes.

Elliptical: Warm up by pedaling moderately for 2 minutes; gradually increase the resistance to a relatively difficult setting. Once warmed up, sprint for 20 seconds and rest (pedal slowly) for 10 seconds. Repeat for a total of 10 minutes for a warm-up and sprint total of 12-15 minutes.

Additional Cardio after Weight Training

Each weight training session is followed by 10-20 minutes of cardio on the elliptical or treadmill. On the elliptical I increase my resistance every 2 minutes so that I am at the highest resistance possible during the last 3 minutes of my session. On the treadmill, I set the incline to the highest possible setting and walk at a moderate pace (4 mph) for the entire duration.

Off-Season Walking: It is important to build muscle in the off-season while keeping fat off. To achieve this I walk at a moderate pace on the treadmill for 20 minutes, 3 days per week following my weight training.

Presentation tips

Posing and presentation are crucial in competition. Presentation can make or break you on stage. The judges do not see you in the gym, they only can judge what you present to them on stage. They do not take into account the time, sweat, diet and work that a competitor puts in every day to build their physique. During prep, I pose for a minimum of 20 minutes every day. During off-season, I continue to practice and tweak my presentation/posing 1-2 days per week. I recommend that bikini or figure competitors practice in their competition heels so that they become comfortable wearing them. Looking natural and comfortable on stage is essential. Smiling is also a big part of your presentation. A smile can be a sign of confidence, beauty, and poise. The judges want to see that you are having fun! “A smile is the best makeup a girl can wear.” ˜Marilyn Monroe

My results

In August 2015, I competed in my first show, the Kentucky Open presented by Gene and Tina Goode. This was a great show for both experienced and novice competitors! Gene and Tina are amazing promoters that put on an amazing, coordinated, seamless show consistently every year. Surprisingly, I took home FIRST PLACE in the Master’s 35 and over Figure division!

In October 2015, I also competed in the Tricky Jackson Classic (2nd place Master’s). In November 2015, I competed in the Kentucky Muscle (5th place Novice).

During my off-season, I focused on building my quads which were identified as one of my weak areas. To accomplish this, I stopped all of the excess running I had been doing and limited my cardio to just 3 days per week.

The building season and minimizing cardio paid off as I began to achieve higher placements in my next few competitions. In March 2016, I competed in the Northern KY Grand Prix (3rd Open, 1st Master’s) and in April 2016, I competed in the KY Derby (5th Open, 3rd Novice, 3rd Master’s).

In October 2016, I competed in the KY Muscle (5th place Open, 4th place Novice, and 2nd place Master’s.

For the final show of the season and 2 weeks after the KY Muscle, I went to West Virginia to compete in the Grand Prix where I brought home 3rd place in Open and 1st place in Master’s and the OVERALL Master’s title!

In conclusion

The best advice that I could give to anyone working towards fitness goals is to trust the process. Diet and exercise are only half of the battle when trying to reach your goals. Dedication, determination, and the will to succeed are all mental challenges people face in their journey. Results are not accomplished overnight. You must dedicate your time and focus on the end and consistently stick to your plan in order to achieve your goals.

Dawn Reichley

From Size 14 To Size 6 My First Figure Competition

I don’t know about you, but I’m a dreamer. Starting as a little girl, I’ve sat around daydreaming about all the things I wanted to do. The problem is, I’m a dreamer, but not a dream chaser. Some say that keeps me grounded, but I say it’s lead me to be comfortably complacent in life.
I know that God wants us to be our best in every facet of life, love, friendships, work and health. We’ve all been given an incredible capacity to achieve continually, better ourselves and learn daily. Although this is what I knew in my heart, it wasn’t the way I was living.

I was taking the easy road when it came to my body. I’d look in the mirror and critique every inch of my body wishing it looked different… knowing that it took more than wishing. It took discipline and focus; two things I had deep down, but always let self doubt defeat.

I’ve been through all the ups and downs of dieting – losing it, then gaining it back. Even though I was a tennis player in both high school and college, I’ve always been a size 10–12 and at times a 14.

My senior year of college, 1999, I trained for and ran the Walt Disney Marathon with my mother for the Leukemia Society. I completed the race and was very proud of my accomplishment. Yet, in terms of body size and composition I didn’t lose a pound during my training. I was still 170+ pounds and probably 28% body fat.

I’ve been through all the ups and downs of dieting – losing it, then gaining it back.

That same year I met Todd and after a whirlwind romance we were married. I had worked hard on my lifting and diet and had gotten in what for me was pretty good shape. A year later, Todd and I opened Bluegrass Fitness Center, in Harrodsburg Kentucky. Now as hard as it may be for you to understand, just because you own a fitness center doesn’t mean it’s easy to get fit. In fact, Todd and I found it very difficult to get back to training consistently after opening the gym. “Working out where you work” wasn’t working out for me!

We opened a second fitness center in Elizabethtown, KY and did start training, but our diet program was unconscious eating and weekend gorging. We’d usually do OK during the week, but would eat pizza, wings and more every weekend. Even though I was training fairly consistently, my body started creeping up in size. Last year, I had to break out my "BIG" jeans and that was not something I was too happy about.

My sister, Shelley had made some great strides working with Beverly for her figure contests and I thought maybe it was something I’d be interested in doing as well. My problem was I really didn’t believe I could do it. It was hard enough to lose 2 pounds, much less the 25 or 30 I needed to lose to compete. I thought about calling them for help, but honestly I was scared. I’d known a lot of ‘fit’ people who used Beverly, including my sister, Shelley, and I was afraid that I couldn’t measure up.


Tara NPC Northern Figure contest warming up before going on stage

After my visit to Beverly International, I was pumped up and ready to go.

I said to myself, "They won’t want to see me, I’m too fat. I can’t do it." Then I’d become disgusted with myself and decide to call. Finally, after a lot of back and forth I made an appointment. Todd and I made our way to BI for our first appointments. I remember that day very clearly; I was so nervous!! Todd and I were greeted like we were old friends. I weighed in that first day at 173, I had a lot of fat to lose and now I had a plan that would work, if I followed it.

I left pumped up and ready to go. I had a goal to do a show in six months. The first few weeks were great. Then I started to slack. The weekends would come and I’d gain back a pound of what I’d lost the week before. I knew in my heart I wasn’t following the plan like I needed to.

Six months passed and I was still a good 10 pounds from where I needed to be. I’d started at 173 pounds and 22 percent body-fat, now I was 164 pounds and 18 percent; progress, but I knew it wasn’t enough. And I had only myself to blame. The realization that I could run a marathon but not stick to my diet for more than a few weeks at a time brought tears of frustration… and a new resolve.

I made the decision to really change, to quit playing around with my diet and this time stick to it, perfectly. And I did for the next 15 weeks! I never felt better in my life. I got my weight down to 145 pounds and my body-fat to 13 percent body-fat.

I also finally attained my goal of competing in a figure competition and looking like I belonged there at the 2005 KY Muscle Open Figure Championships where I placed fourth out of 19 in my class. I WAS THRILLED!

For now I plan on one more competition, the Northern KY this spring, then Todd and I would like to start a family.

I’ve learned so much throughout this experience; not only about dieting and working out, but about myself. I’m now stronger physically, mentally and spiritually than before.

I want all of you who have dreams of competing or even of just looking your best to know you’re not alone. I know how difficult it can be, especially when it seems so easy for others. Believe me, it wasn’t easy for me; but whenever I felt weak I would pray and ask God to give me the strength I needed to complete the immediate task at hand. I believe God wants us to continually challenge ourselves not only spiritually, but also mentally and physically to be our best. As it says in 1 Corinthians 9:24, "run in such a way as to get the prize."

I could never have achieved my goals without Rachel Wade. Rachel was there for me through all my ups and downs. I have to admit I broke down on her and Angie, my trainer, a couple times during the course of my contest prep. Todd was great and very supportive. He kept saying, "It’s not the end results that matters, honey, but the journey to get there." What a philosopher. Thanks baby!

Todd, my husband, was great! He kept reminding me, "It’s not end result that matters, but the journey to get there".

Tara’s Diet 16 Weeks Out
Supplements: Ms Power Pak, 3 Ultra 40 and 3 Mass Amino Acids with each meal, 2 Lean Out per meal, and 3 EFA Gold with meals 1 and 5.
Meal #1: 1 whole egg and 5 egg whites; 3 ounces 93 percent lean beef, chicken or turkey; ½ cup oatmeal
Meal #2: Protein Shake: 2 Scoops Ultra Size or Ultimate Muscle Protein mixed with water to desired consistency
Meal #3: 6-ounce lean protein source; 4-ounce sweet potato or ½ cup cooked brown rice; 1 cup vegetables or salad
Meal #4: (same as meal #2)
Meal #5: 6-ounce lean protein; 2 cups vegetables
Meal #6 (Occasionally): 1 scoop Ultimate Muscle Protein, enough water to make it pudding consistency and topped with 4 tablespoons Cool Whip (yum!)
Tara’s Diet 6 Weeks Out
Supplements: Super Pak; 4 Ultra 40 and 4 Muscularity BCAAs with each meal; 3 EFA Gold with meals 1 and 5.
Special Fat Loss Supplements:
Lean Out – 2 caps with each meal 7–Keto MuscLean – 3 caps in am & 3 in p.m. GH Factor – 4 caps in a.m., 4 before training or an afternoon meal, & 4 before bed (all on empty stomach – taken final 5 weeks) Energy Reserve – 2 tablets before training and before each meal.
Training & Recovery Supplements: Glutamine Select – 1 scoop before and after training
Muscle Mass – 5 tablets before training, and 5 every 8 minutes during training until I reached a total of 25
Joint Care – 3 caps with meal #1
Digestive Support: Multiple Enzyme Complex – 1–2 tablets with each meal
Meal #1: 3 egg whites, 1 scoop UMP or MP, ½ grapefruit
Meal #2: 2 scoops protein brownie mixture: 1 scoop Ultimate Muscle Protein Vanilla + 1 scoop Muscle Provider Chocolate
Meal #3: 5-ounce very lean meat, 2 cups veggies topped with red wine vinegar
Meal #4: Same as meal #2
Meal #5: 5-ounce very lean meat or 10 egg whites, or 6-ounce whitefish or 3 egg whites and one scoop UMP or MP, 2 cups veggies (ate lots of spinach). I love egg white and spinach omelets!
Mondays and Thursdays: In place of my 5th meal, I had this version of the Beverly carb
Meal: ¼ cup oats, ½ cup brown rice, 1 cup veggies, 4-ounce sweet potato, and 1 tablespoon butter.