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Strive Forward, Learn, Win!
By: Big Ant
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Hungry to strive forward, to better myself, to learn from mistakes, to stay focused, to stick to my game plan… And all of this makes me hungrier to win.

Winter. Another cold ass Sunday morning. I woke up today “extra” hungry today. Hungry. Not as in six whole eggs and six whites with cheese and ham, three blueberry pancakes, and two bowls of Peanut Butter Captain Crunch (I am 243 pounds, and still have abs and good muscle separation--I can eat this crap for my cheat day). Hungry, as in I have more determination, dedication, and discipline.

Was it a fluke that I won four overall bodybuilding contests last year? Fuck no. I busted my ass in the gym, did not cheat on my diet and completed all of my cardio sessions. You see, I know my bodybuilding peers. All of whom I am good friends with. They have those crazy ass genetics--small waist, round muscle bellies, small joints, don't have to do much cardio to get in decent shape. Now me, I got to do that hated cardio. Cardio, two sessions a day for 30 minutes during my pre-contest period just damn sucks. If you like doing it you are lying. But I have secret weapons my genetically-blessed friends don't have. I stay hungry, and like today, I become even more so.

By the time you read this, I will be getting ready to leave for Columbus, Ohio. The Arnold Sports Festival, formally known as the Arnold Classic Weekend. Yeah, I will see several other pro bodybuilders there who I bump heads with in the past on stage. We will even grab some food together, train together and hang out a bit. But, again, I know these guys. They aren't willing to put in that extra bit of effort to get “hungrier”. Sure they train, diet and do cardio. But for a back workout, selectorized machine rows, one arm cable pull downs, machine pullovers, and some half assed light partial dead lifts is not going to give them that overall trophy.

Shit, I see it at the gym I train at--the guys doing the partial light dead lifts because some cute, young, tight-wearing-pants, low-cut-shirt-sporting hottie female is training glutes on the butt blaster, which is right next to the power rack where they are attempting to do their “deadlifts”. And after they finish their dead lifts, they talk about winning the next bodybuilding contest they enter, “killing everyone on stage”. With that little second grade choir girl workout, they are lucky to place in the Mr. Shop Rite supermarket contest, aisle ten (yeah, that is the junk food aisle).

I know when it is a long-ass day at my full-time job in the PT field, waking up at 4:00 am, leaving to drive to work at 5:00 am, seeing my first patient at 6:00 am and seeing between 12-16 patients/clients a day, getting home at 3:00 pm, sucking down a meal and then I have to train back. Whether I am entering my home basement gym or heading off to the local gym up the street from my house to train back, regardless how exhausted I am, I am going. No, I have to do heavy barbell rows, deadlifts, pull ups, one arm dumbbell rows, T-bar rows, pull downs, low pulley rows, good mornings and hypers. If I don't do these movements, well, that is the difference between first place and the overall winner.

It's like, doing that cardio session when you are drained of energy, riding on fumes because of the drop in carbs you made to your diet to make you achieve that shredded look. When I go to family functions or over a friend's house for a party, I pack my cooler with my meals because I cannot eat their normal food while I am in my pre-contest phase. Or when I am dying of thirst, but can't let a drop of water touch my lips before the prejudging because it might blur my definition. Or leg day on 50 grams of carbs, and the gym is over 100 degrees inside… Still pushing my body past its full potential with heavy squats, leg presses, walking lunges (done outside), leg extensions, leg curls, seated, standing and lying and stiff leg deadlifts…That's being hungry. I am always hungry. Hungry to strive forward, to better myself, to learn from mistakes, to stay focused, to stick to my game plan… And all of this makes me hungrier to win.

Tags: Bodybuilding Life


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Bedrock Training - Beginning bodybuilding Training Manual Kelso's Shrug Book - Paul Kelso expands the shrug principle with dozens of variations that improve muscularity and the competitive lifts. Steve Reeves Bodybuilding Journal: An Analysis