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NOVEMBER 2018

GIANT JOHAL GAINZ

THE

GYM CHEF COOKS

THE

KEVIN LEVRONE’S

STEROID

MR. OLYMPIA ROUND-UP

ENCYCLOPEDIA www.flexonline.co.uk

BUILD AN X-FRAME

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INSIDE THIS MONTH

NOVEMBER 2018

IN EVERY ISSUE

40 ARNOLD PRESS

6 NICK ORTON

Build shoulders worthy of the Governator with this rotational shoulder blaster

14 KEVIN LEVRONE CONCLUDES

44 THE GREAT PROTEIN SCANDAL

Kevin Levrone shares his verdict on the Mr. Olympia results from the Las Vegas stage this year

FLEX investigates whether you’re being misled by ‘protein’ packaging

COVER PHOTOGRAPH BY SIMON HOWARD

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48 THE GYM CHEF COOKS Try out these delicious recipes courtesy of The Gym Chef

58 500 CALORIE FEASTS Feast for under 500 calories AND hit your macros!

64 PLANT PACKED PROTEIN PHOTO CREDIT: EDGAR ARTIGA

Can plant-packed protein get you jacked? FLEX investigates

66 OAT-ILY DELICIOUS Sweet, tasty and wholesome ideas for the sweet tooth, from CJ’s Pick ’n’ Mix Oats

C

GIAN ove r S t o T

At 6’5 JOHAL Gr y IFBB ”, newly cr AINZ S o Pr o Ja u p e r H e av w n e d y know mie Christi weight s a th ing or an -Johal makin two gg mainta ainz! Here’s about ins his ho enorm w he frame ous …

68 THE STEROID ENCYCLOPAEDIA An A-Z of chemical assistance vocab

16 TWEAKS TO BECOME A FREAK: BICEPS EDITION These five novel moves will decimate your bi’s to take them to new heights

22 BUILD HUGE LEGS IN FOUR MOVES Want bigger, stronger legs? The hit them with these foundational exercises

26 QUICK TURN-AROUND Lagging back? Use this workout to transform your weakness into a strength

28 DEAN ON GAINS The four-times World’s Strongest Man shows you how to blast through sticking points

30 BUILD AN X-FRAME Want that coveted x-frame physique? Follow this 12-week plan to carve it out

38 A MODEL APPROACH Hoping to build the body of a magazine cover model? Take the advice of two-time Arnold Classic men’s physique champ Ryan Terry

74 MOVING ON UP How women’s physique competitor Shanique Grant blossomed and overcame bullying

78 TO BE FRANK 76 TRAIN SMART We compare the latest fitness trackers on the market

76

Three-times Mr.Olympia Frank Zane shares what helped him stand out on bodybuilding’s biggest stage

86 LEGS LIKE BOWMAN British champ Rob Bowman Taylor shares his leg routine for gainz that speak for themselves!

94 NATURAL GAINZ Gavin Gibson knows a thing or two about growing naturally…

102 POSE LIKE A PRO IFBB Physique Pro Femi Billyrose shows you how to make the most of your aesthetics on stage

106 HUCK FINN The adventures of Huck Finn Barbell

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PHOTO CREDIT: PER BERNAL

PHOTO CREDIT: SIMON HOWARD

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


CHAIRMAN, PRESIDENT & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER David Pecker

UK EDITION CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Nick Orton

www.flexonline.co.uk

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Nick Orton EDITORIAL UK MANAGING DIRECTOR Carl Walker e-mail: c.walker@bodypower.com EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Danni Levy e-mail: d.levy@bodypower.com EDITOR Darren Nicholhurst e-mail: d.nicholhurst@bodypower.com

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President of the IFBB Professional League JIM MANION Founder and Chairman Emeritus JOE WEIDER (1920–2013) We assume no responsibility for returning unsolicited material, including but not limited to photographs, artwork, manuscripts and letters. Membership on the Editorial Advisory Board does not imply endorsement of any product or service advertised in this magazine. Views expressed in advertisements and editorials are not necessarily those of FLEX or the Editorial Advisory Board. Reader discretion is advised. Please consult your doctor before beginning any exercise or diet programme, or when making changes in an existing programme if you have any doubts about your health status.Every care is taken to assure the accuracy of the information in FLEX, but no responsibility can be accepted for the consequences of actions based on the advice contained herein. BodyPower Publishing Ltd makes every efort to ensure that the advertising contained in FLEX is derived from respectable sources. It does not, however, assume responsibility for the advertisements, nor any claims and representations made therein, nor the quality or delivery of the products/services themselves. Editorial articles relating to food supplementation and sports nutrition reproduced in this issue of FLEX, are for information purposes only and are not intended to solicit or otherwise promote any commercialised product containing the mentioned supplements. FLEX is distributed on an international basis. To the extent permitted by law, Weider Publications, LLC, a subsidiary of American Media, Inc and its ailiates: BodyPower Publishing Ltd, do not accept liability for the efects of reported supplements or products, legal or illegal or any loss, injury or damage caused by their use. It is the responsibility of the individual to abide by the laws and dosage allowances speciic to their country of residence. Always consult a doctor before commencing supplementation or changing dosages. Some supplements may not work efectively outside speciic dosage ranges and may potentially cause harm if taken in excess. Not all supplements, combinations of supplements, or dose ranges of supplements may be suitable, safe or efective for everybody.

Copyright © (2018) BodyPower Publishing Ltd. Published under license from Weider Publications, LLC, a subsidiary of American Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. ‘FLEX’ is a trademark of Weider Publications, LLC, a subsidiary of American Media, Inc. and may not be used or reproduced without the permission of Weider Publications, LLC. The information in FLEX is intended to educate. Do not substitute it for the advice of a qualiied health care practitioner.


FROM THE CEO

By Nick Orton

were diagnosed last year, which seemed a huge number. The STI with the highest prognosis was chlamydia, this made up 62% of cases. Chlamydia is difficult to identify as it sometimes doesn’t exhibit any symptoms, so regular testing is essential. Gonorrhoea was the next most ‘popular’ STI, accompanied by Genital Warts and Genital Herpes. All in all, a pretty gross picture, so be sure to wrap up in the heat of the moment!

Sex, mobility, death, destruction… and bodybuilding

I

’ve had a strange few weeks. First there was sexual health week, so being the thorough professional that I am, I did the research on this area with a google search, ‘sexual health’. Who could have predicted the images that appeared! But it did show me that I must work on my flexibility, as it’s an important part of staying fit and healthy. Mobility training is something that most of us overlook, but (and certainly if you want a job in the porn industry) it is useful for reducing the risk of injury. Funnily enough, sexual health week did prompt me to develop

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

the health monitoring area at BodyPower expo (10th – 12th May), which offers visitors a range of health checks, and now features a walk in clinic for general concerns and a sex clinic for testing and advice. For sheer entertainment value, I am arranging a live show in this area, which is sure to make you cry with laughter… Once I’d waded through the search result images, none of which were at all suitable for publication, I found out some shocking facts - 422,147 sexually transmitted diseases

Death and destruction featured heavily too, although this was confined to the premiere of RedCon1, the zombie action movie, which is superbly produced and now out on general release. If you like action, gore and zombies, this is one for you - I know the main guys behind the film and I couldn’t help but be inspired by the journey they had taken to get the film made. It took six years, but they never gave up, and remained positive throughout. One of the partners is a great guy called Mark Strange. He’s a fitness guy and really epitomises everything that many of us strive to be, and I’m sure that fitness training helps with his mental focus and his ability to achieve. And bodybuilding…the season for competing athletes has stepped up another gear this year, with a plethora of shows to take part in, and a wide variety of classes, so that pretty much anyone could step on stage, given they are in the right condition. It’s a positive development and shows that fitness and the competitive side of our sport is booming – if you’ve never been to a show, you are missing out, they are great events and really inspirational for fitness enthusiasts.

Nick Orton CEO BodyPower @nickorton22


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GIANT JOHAL GAINZ ///

BY DANNI LEVY

///

PHOTOGRAPHS BY SIMON HOWARD

At 6’5”, newly crowned IFBB Super Heavyweight Pro Jamie Christian-Johal knows a thing or two about making gainz! The 33-year-old from Nottingham took the win at the San Marino Pro qualifier in September, hitting the stage at 20 stone 5 pounds!

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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“I’ve been lifting since I was 16,” begins Jamie. “I did my first local show in 2009 as a classic bodybuilder. I then progressed to the UKBFF in 2011 and won the classic bodybuilding category weighing in at 15 stone.” In 2012, Jamie moved onto the BodyPower qualifier, once again taking the win, before resting in 2013-14 to make improvements and pack on mass. “I came back in 2015 as a super heavyweight after taking two years out to gain size,” says Jamie. “I did the Zack Khan Classic and won- this time weighing 18 stone. I’d put on 3 stone of muscle and people were starting to take notice of me.” At the British Finals that year, Jamie came out top spot, having packed on another ½ a stone between the two shows. “I came in at 18½ stone for the British,” he says. “It was then I really started to take myself seriously.” Jamie decided to leave the fire service in order to pursue his dream of turning pro. “I knew that if I wanted to step it up a gear I’d have to put everything into it,” he says. “I bought my gym, Ikeston Gym and Fitness and followed my passion night and day.” Two years on, Jamie returned to the stage this year for the San Marino Pro qualifier and made a huge impact at 20 stone 5 pounds.

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


“When I stepped on stage I felt the best I ever had,” he reflects. “I won my pro card and achieved my dream of turning bodybuilding into a career. I was chuffed to say the least.” Jamie has been supported throughout his prep by wife Katie, although he says he keeps her out of his prep kitchen. “My wife is amazing,” he says. “She’s really into her fitness too and we train together often, but I don’t let her prep my food as I have OCD and if it’s a gram over or under I freak out. I weigh 20 stone 12 now, I have gained more since the show and I will continue to do so.” Maintaining such a large amount of mass doesn’t come cheap food wise! In fact, Jamie even enjoys pizza on prep! “It’s funny, because my coach Phil Viz is from New Jersey and in the US all the sizes are different, so when he told me to have a ‘regular’ pizza I was ordering a 14” Domino’s and later realised he wanted me to have a 16-18”,” Jamie laughs. “That’s some dream for comp prep right!” The measurements difference didn’t always go in Jamie’s favour when it came to US translation though. “In peak week, Phil told me to have 3 gallons of water a day, which in UK terms means about 15 litres, so I was drinking more than I could handle,” says Jamie. “I later realised I should have been having 10-12 litres in UK measurements, which of course made things a lot easier! I generally stick to 6-8 litres throughout prep then increase to 10-12 for the final week. “Peeing so much isn’t easy though. I keep a jug by my bed, much to my wife’s disapproval. In Italy I had a nice apartment and the beautiful vase I found on the mantel piece came in extra handy the night before the show! I did do the laundry for them to rid the place of fake tan though!” Jamie has two children, Ella, 12 and Harley, 9. “Harley is extra popular at school because his mates all think his dad is a superhero,” jokes Jamie. “My kids both love what I do. My whole family are so supportive. Prep can be hard but because I need so many calories Katie and I still have regular date nights, plus of course the regular Domino’s pizza takeout!” Jamie currently trains for up to 2 hours a day, or 10 hours a week. “I have been training too much really,” he says. “I want to train more intensively and for less time. I’m going to aim for 5 hours a week total as opposed to 10. I’m also going

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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JAMIE’S TRAINING SPLIT Monday - Pull Tuesday - Push Wednesday - Rest Thursday - Legs (quad focused) Friday - Pull Saturday - Hams/glutes Sunday - Rest

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to start a brisk early morning walk before meal 1, which is proven to wake the body up and help you to mentally prepare for the day. I’d recommend this for anyone, even when bulking.” So what does the future hold for the charismatic muscle tower? “I still have gaps to fill,” says Jamie. “I’m going to have 2019 off and grow again. I want to add another 2 stone to my frame and hit the show at 22 stone in 2020 for my pro debut. I will see what 2019 brings in terms of progress and weight gain. I guess I’m going to have to find a 20” pizza somewhere! “My ultimate dream is to win the Olympia. I never truly realised my potential until I got my pro card, but that really opened my eyes up to how far I can take the sport. At 6’5” you’re never really looked at seriously, but when I gained so much so fast people started taking notice of me. “In 2020 I want to qualify for the Olympia. As a marketing tool I guess my height makes me really different and helps me to stand out. It’s unusual for someone so tall to pack on so much mass and be able to stand up with and compare to the super heavyweights, but I’ve achieved that.” What exactly does Jamie feel will make him stand out on the world’s biggest stage…his lats! “I have 31” inch thighs which is bigger than most people’s waists, but the thing I’m known for is my lat spread,” he says. “I think it’s because I’m so tall with such big thighs that my shoulder to waist ratio makes that x-frame look so much more impressive. People say no one will ever touch my front lat spread. I call it the superman pose. Fingers crossed it’ll win me the Olympia!” Instagram: @ akathegiant

GIANT PORTIONS

Jamie consumes a whopping 8,000 calories a day to maintain his current bodyweight. His daily diet looks like this... MEAL 1 500ml egg whites 30g whey 100g oats Banana 40g cashew nut butter MEAL 2 10oz mince 1 cup rice Veg

MEAL 3 400g Greek yoghurt Banana 30g Gaspari Precision whey 2 pop tarts PRE-WORKOUT Rice Krispy Square INTRA-WORKOUT Gaspari Glycofuse and 20g Gaspari HyperAmino

MEAL 4 Cereal Whey MEAL 5 10oz steak 2 cups rice Veg MEAL 6 500g Greek yoghurt 30g nut butter Whey

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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THE 2018 MR. OLYMPIA IS OVER AND THE NEW CHAMPS HAVE BEEN CROWNED! Kevin Levrone shares his views on the results, exclusively with FLEX...

///

BY DANNI LEVY

Kevin Levrone

Shawn Rhoden: 2018 Mr. Olympia Kevin says: “I never thought Shawn would take the title, because he wasn’t even on the radar! It was such a shock win, he just came out of the dark.

“Shawn totally deserved to win, 100%. He still has some work to do to bring his upper body up in line with his legs. In my opinion, if he can pack 8-10lbs onto his shoulders, back and triceps he will be untouchable. I don’t think anyone would ever beat him if he made those small tweaks. “I know Shawn personally and he’s humble and a great champ. He has a vision to go out and help others and implement a structure of empowering other people. I hope he steps out in public as our champ and presents himself as the bodybuilding star he is.”

Flex Lewis: 2018 212 Olympia Kevin says: “I wasn’t surprised at all to see Flex retain his title. He has great balance, size and shape to his physique. In my opinion, no one can get close to Flex.”

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Shawn Rhoden pictured at the 2017 Mr Olympia

T O P L E F T : R A FA L B O R U C H / R I G H T : P E R B E R N A L

“Phil Heath, Big Ramy and Dexter Jackson were on everyone’s likely list and yet out of nowhere came the guy who placed 5th last year.


PER BERNAL

Flex Lewis pictured at the 2017 Mr Olympia

Instagram: @kevinlevrone NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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N P C AT H L E T E

INDONY JEAN BAPTISTE BIRTH DATE: 31st March, 1990 HEIGHT: 5'7" WEIGHT: 94kg (contest); 111kg (off-season) RESIDENCE: Amityville, New York TWITTER: @jb033190

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Tweaks TO

Become A

Freak BICEPS EDITION These five novel moves will decimate your bi’s to take them to new heights. B Y E R I C “ M E R L I N ” B R O S E R // P H O T O G R A P H S B Y E D G A R A R T I G A

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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W When someone asks you to “make a muscle,” you

don’t roll up your trouser leg and flex your calf or hunch over and show off your traps—you flex your biceps, dammit. And that’s why I’m never shocked when I witness average gym rats screaming and cursing during sets of curls, training their bi’s with more intensity than they do any other body part. It’s the quintessential muscle, the mark of a guy who lifts. Everyone wants a nice pair of sleeve-huggers, and that’s fine by me. With that said, here are a few good ways to tweak basic curling movements to make them more productive for you—and to ignite a new jolt of growth. Hit them hard, hit them often, and enjoy the gains that come. Now, get to work! THE MOVEMENT:

Incline Dumbbell Curl THE TWEAK:

Keep your hands and wrists rotated outward. THE EXECUTION:

Sit on an incline bench set to about 60 degrees with a dumbbell in each hand. Rotate your hands and wrists outward (as far as your shoulders will allow) so your forearms are facing away from you. Curl the weight until the biceps are fully contracted. Hold the squeeze for 1 second before slowly lower-

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

ing back to the bottom. Make sure arms are fully extended before beginning the next rep. THE RESULT:

By rotating your hands and wrists outward while curling on an incline bench, you will force the biceps to stretch hard at the beginning of every rep, flooding them with more nutrient-rich blood for faster recovery and growth. Additionally, you’ll better target the inner head of the biceps in this position.


THE MOVEMENT:

High-cable Curl THE TWEAK:

Use the lat pulldown machine. THE EXECUTION:

Attach a short straight bar to the pulley of a lat pulldown machine. Secure your legs under the pads and then grab the bar with a shoulder-width grip, arms fully extended. Keep your torso upright as you curl the bar down and back behind your head. Make sure to flex the biceps hard at the contraction point for 1 to 2 seconds before slowly returning to the start position. THE RESULT:

Because the elbows are up by the ears when performing this movement, the biceps become a less powerful flexor of the forearm. This forces the brachialis, found underneath the biceps, to become more active, helping ignite more growth in this muscle. Increasing the mass of the brachialis also pushes the biceps muscle higher, creating the illusion of a better “peak.�

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THE MOVEMENT:

Standing Barbell Curl THE TWEAK:

Hold the barbell with your wrists flexed downward. THE EXECUTION: Baptiste curling away with mentor IFBB Pro League bodybuilder Maxx Charles.

Grab a preloaded barbell that’s lighter than you would normally use with a shoulder-width grip. Curl the bar until your biceps are fully contracted, keeping elbows tucked in. Keeping the wrists in the same position as the ascent, slowly lower the bar back to the starting position. THE RESULT:

Cocking the wrists downward removes the forearms from the equation, making the biceps work harder. Even though you can’t lift as much weight using this method, the increased tension on the muscle will result in more hypertrophy. THE MOVEMENT:

Barbell Curl THE TWEAK:

Perform the move seated. THE EXECUTION:

Sit on a bench that has an adjustable incline and set it to about 80 degrees. Grab a loaded straight bar with a shoulder-width grip and sit down on the bench, holding the bar just above the tops of your thighs. Curl until the biceps are fully contracted, hold the squeeze, then return to the starting point. Do not rest the bar on your thighs for the duration of the set. THE RESULT:

These keep constant tension on the biceps. And because you’re perfoming only a partial curl, you can use pretty heavy weight. Personally, I love to occasionally finish off my biceps workout with this movement. 20

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


THE MOVEMENT:

Seated Concentration Curl THE TWEAK:

Use a “hammer� grip when curling. THE EXECUTION:

Holding a dumbbell in one hand, secure yourself on a preacher bench, with your upper arm resting on the

pad. Very strictly curl the dumbbell, with your palm facing in, until you feel your biceps contract. Hold for 1 to 2 seconds and then slowly lower the weight back down. THE RESULT:

Like the lat pulldown curl, this

variation places the biceps in a weaker position, causing the lesser-used brachialis to come into play. The hammer grip even further activates the brachialis. All in all this is a sick move for bettering your biceps peak. NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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Build Huge Legs in Four Moves Want bigger, stronger legs? THEN hit them with the following foundational exercises. By JOE WUEBBEN P h o to g r a p h s by I A N S PA N IER

THE PARETO PRINCIPLE (aka the “80/20 rule”) states that, in a given area, roughly 80% of your results are accomplished by 20% of your efforts. If we were applying this to leg training, then squats, lunges, step-ups, and deadlifts would fall into the 20% of exercises producing 80% of your lower-body gains (more or less). All those leg extensions and leg curls are fine, but they’re likely not your true thigh-developing linchpins. What you’ll find here is a Pareto-inspired leg workout that provides a bit more bang for the buck than your standard leg day routine—variations of lunges, squats, step-ups, and deadlifts, and nothing else. Consider this your 80/20 leg day. If you’ve got time later in the week (and aren’t crushed by this workout), then knock yourself out with leg presses, leg curls, and the inner-/outer-thigh machine. 22

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

REVERSE LUNGE Performing reverse lunges with a loaded barbell on your back allows you to handle more weight than you could with, say, dumbbells or kettlebells. This translates to more weight lifted over time for bigger and stronger legs.


GOBLET SQUAT Think of the goblet squat as a modified version of a front squat. Keep your torso upright and maintain a tight core, and keep the dumbbell up against your body so it doesn’t pull you forward.

JUSTIN RODRIGUEZ Height: 5'9" Weight: 109 kg Residence: New York, NY Contest History: 2018: Arnold Classic, 7th; New York Pro, 3rd; Chicago Pro, 3rd; Tampa Pro, 4th

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STEP-UP Perform step-ups with either dumbbells or a barbell; when in doubt, go with dumbbells, since they’re a slightly safer option. Plant your foot on a bench or box, heel first, not the ball of the foot.

TRAINING

LEVEL UP DIRECTIONS: Warm up with five to 10 minutes of low-intensity cardio followed by one to two sets of light leg extensions and one to two sets of light lunges. EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Reverse Lunge

3

10 per leg

Goblet Squat

4

8*

Step-up

3

10 per leg

Romanian Deadlift

3

12

*Start light and increase weight on every set.

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ROMANIAN DEADLIFT Standard deadlifts can’t be beat when it comes to building strength. However, starting each rep from the floor takes the tension off your muscles for lackluster hypertrophy. The Romanian deadlift, in which you don’t set the bar down, is a better option for muscle-building purposes.

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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BY MICHAEL BERG

Quick Turnaround

Bumstead worked hard to bring up his back in time for the 2018 Mr. Olympia.

Lagging back? Here’s the workout that 2018 Mr. Olympia Classic Physique runner-up Chris Bumstead used to transform his weakness into a strength. THE 2018 MR. OLYMPIA Classic Physique runner-up, Chris Bumstead gave current defending champ Breon Ansley a real run for his money at Olympa this September however as fate would have it came in 2nd place behind Ansley for a second consecutive year. Bumstead boasts trademark development for the division. A casual glance at him reveals wide shoulders, a tight waist, every body part sculpted and polished, making it all the more surprising when the 6', 225-pound Canadian claims a certain imperfection. “People are often confused when I say my back is a weak point, due to my crazy lat flare in my front poses,” Bumstead says. “The truth is, there’s a big difference between width and density when it comes to training back.” Here, the 23-year-old outlines the back training plan he’s using in the lead-up to his Las Vegas showdown, designed to obliterate every weakness in his rear view—real or imagined.

OUT OF SIGHT

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FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

LIGHT IS RIGHT “To really activate my back muscles, I need to focus on the contraction, using a lighter weight in order to see improvements,” Bumstead says. He’ll start with one to two heavy exercises and then do isolation-style moves like cable rows and pulldowns.

ON THE BUTTON On close hammer-grip pulldowns, Bumstead uses this technique to alter the target: “For the first 10 reps, pull the handle down to your belly button,” he explains. “You should feel an amazing lat contraction. Then let the weight hang above you without letting go of the handle, stretching for 15 seconds. Then complete the set to failure, pulling the handle down to just below nipple level.”

TRAINING

CHRIS BUMSTEAD’S BACK WORKOUT EXER CISE

SETS

REPS

Deadlift or Rack Pull*

6

6–12

Bentover Barbell Row

4

10–12

Shovelhandle Cable Row

4

10–12

Close Hammer-grip Lat Pulldown

4

12–15

Wide-grip Lat Pulldown

2

15

Dumbbell Pullover

2

10–12

Back Extension

2

To failure

* Bumstead rotates between deadlifts and rack pulls. When doing either move as his first exercise, he’ll do 6 sets, pyramiding up the weight until the final set, when he’ll go to “complete failure” at 6 to 8 reps.

STEVE SMITH

“I had one of those ‘gym bro’ mentalities, thinking, ‘I can’t even see it, why bother working so hard on it?’ ” admits the 2017 Pittsburgh Pro and Toronto Pro Classic Physique champ. “So my back was an issue when I started competing.

The more competitive I got, the more I was driven to bring up my weak points.”


Dead-on Gains The four-time World’s Strongest Man shows you how to blast through sticking points.

AS AN INTERNATIONAL Strongman champ, I am frequently asked about how to break through deadlift plateaus. Lifters have three main sticking points when it comes to the deadlift: They have trouble getting it off the floor, they can’t get the bar over their knees, and they have issues locking out the bar at the top. Fortunately, all these trouble spots can be improved. Here’s how to deadlift better.

OFF THE FLOOR

JA S O N B R E E Z E

Stay tight as you begin the movement to avoid losing power. Also, if your flexibility is bad, it may be preventing you from getting down into the optimal position. This is why stretching is critical—even for Strongmen and powerlifters. More flexible 28

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

hips, glutes, and hamstrings allow you to sit lower for better leverage. Try these three moves.

1

SEATED BOX JUMP

Start in a seated position on a bench with another box on the floor in front of you. In one explosive movement, launch out

of the seated position and jump up onto the box in front of you.

2

DEFICIT DEADLIFT

Performing deadlifts while standing on a couple of plates increases the distance that you have to pull the weight, which can help with flexibility. Use lighter weights on all sets.

3

ACCOMMODATING RESISTANCE Attaching

bands or chains to the bar will teach you to pull harder. It will also help you build power off the floor.


BY BRI A N SH AW

AT THE KNEES The best way to beat this plateau is by pulling the bar off a stack of plates. It’s also very beneficial to add chains or bands for more resistance the entire way through the move.

THE LOCKOUT It’s always terrible to fail when you’re a matter of inches from completing the lift. If this happens to you, your upper back is most likely the weak link. Try these two moves for stronger lockouts:

1

BENTOVER ROW Rotate between using a barbell and dumbbells. Make sure when you do this exercise that you pull the weight to your upper abdomen to build upper-back strength where you need it.

2

SHRUG Going heavy when you shrug can translate to bigger traps and improvements with your deadlift. Rotate between sets using barbells, dumbbells, or shrugs with a frame or farmer’s walk implement.

in this position, which is why they’ll use straps. But working on your grip strength or simply progressing with only this grip will lead to a stronger squeeze and bigger forearms.

GRIP IT AND RIP IT Try these three grip variations during your next deadlift sesh. DOUBLE OVERHAND This is your standard deadlift grip, in which you hold the bar with a shoulder-width grip, both palms facing you. Most guys are weakest

SWITCH This variation has you gripping the bar with one palm facing you and the other outward. You can hold more weight this way, but over time you will develop imbalances in your traps. HOOK Master this grip— which is a standard overhand grip with your thumbs tucked into your fists—and you’ll never drop the bar again. Be warned: It’s painful at first, as you squeeze your thumbs. So be prepared to embrace the pain.

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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30

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


BUILD AN

Want that coveted X-frame physique? Follow this 12-week plan to carve it out. BY M&F EDITORS

FRAME IF BODY TYPES correlated to the alphabet, which letter would you like to be? You could almost immediately rule out the “O,” which feels like the most amoebic of shapes to assume. Another vowel body type you’d want to avoid is the “I,” perhaps for more obvious, dimensionbereft reasons. One has to look toward the end of the alphabet for a designation more worthy of the muscle-seeking masses who thumb these pages. Sorry, Dr. Jones—in this case, “X” definitely marks the spot. The X-frame has become as much of a colloquialism as has ever existed in the world

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

31


of physique building. That’s because it mimics—albeit to a metaphorical extreme—the proportions one seeks to achieve. To say one has an X-frame suggests that one has thick hanging lats, well-capped deltoids, a tight waistline, and the kind of bellowing quads that can only be had through regular DAY 1 EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Standing Dumbbell Press

4

15, 12, 10, 8

Wide-grip Upright Row

4

12, 10, 8, 8

Standing Lateral Raise

4

15, 12, 10, 8

Straight-arm Pulldown

3

10

Seated Row

3

10

dates with the squat rack. The road to an X-framed physique is paved with sweat, hard work, and weekly, crippling bouts of delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS). But if you’re ready to prep yourself mentally, the payoff will be well worth the hassle of avoiding stairs for a while. Read on for the particulars on how to slant your training to emphasise your X-centric body parts. X PROGRAMMING This is a 12-week plan broken down into a five-way split to be performed in three-on/one-off, two-on/one-off fashion. This means five dedicated days of training per week with two days of rest. Each body part is trained once per week with the exception of shoulders and back. These two body parts

are of primary importance to creating an X-frame and will require extra attention. It’s not quite two full workouts per week, though. One of the two workouts for back and shoulders is comprehensive, but the other can be viewed as a “touch-up” workout, designed to encourage blood flow into the body part during an off day for additional recovery as well as some bonus detail work. This method has been shown in clinical studies to be effective for jump-starting growth. The movements chosen may appear to be basic, but the subtleties— wide grips, unique angles, and lots of pump-inducing supersets—will prove to be more than enough in your quest for an X-frame. All it’ll take is some serious dedication and a whole lot of hard work.

Start light on this move, ensuring that you feel every rep working the target muscle. As the reps lessen, add weight to overload the deltoids. As the load increases, still perform these with good form.

32

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

P R E V I O U S S P R E A D : P E R B E R N A L . T H I S PAG E : C H A R L E S L O W T H I A N. O P P O S I T E : P E R B E R N A L

Standing Lateral Raise


DAY 2 EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Rope Pushdown Superset with Alternating Dumbbell Curl

3

12

3

10

Machine Dip Superset with Hammer Curl

3 3

To failure 8

Incline EZ-bar Extension Superset with Incline Dumbbell Curl

3

10

3

8

Forward Crunch Superset with Reverse Crunch

3

20

3

20

Machine Dip Using a machine instead of your own body weight allows you to achieve two things. First, you can use more weight, so you’re applying a greater stressor to your triceps. Second, you can keep your form tighter throughout the movement.

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

33


Hack Squat Removing the balance aspect of free-weight squats lets you focus on contracting your quads—and just your quads—with heavy weight.


Alternating Front Raise Listen: It’s OK to use a little body English to get the weight up to shoulder level. The caveat being that you need to go heavy and hard.

DAY 3

PER BERNAL

EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Smith Machine Squat

3

15, 12, 10

Hack Squat

3

12, 10, 8

Leg Press

3

10, 10, 8

Leg Extension

3

15, 12, 10

Leg Curl

3

15, 12, 10

Stiff-leg Deadlift

3

Seated Calf Raise

DAY 4 EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Wide-grip Pulldown (to front)

4

15, 12, 10, 8

Wide-grip Pulldown (to back)

4

12

12

Wide-grip Row

4

10 12

15

Bentover Lateral Raise

2

3

10

2

12

Angled One-arm Lateral Raise

2

Standing Calf Raise Donkey Calf Raise

2

10

Alternating Front Raise

2

10

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

35


Incline Dumbbell Flye

X-ceptional A review of outstanding X-frame athletes.

STEVE REEVES

DENNIS WOLF

IAN HARRISON

The OG X-framer was made famous by starring in Italian sword-and-sandals movies of the ’50s and ’60s.

The big bad Wolf’s most notable win was the 2014 Arnold Classic.

Harrison’s X-frame credentials won him the 1989 British overall championship at age 20.

CEDRIC MCMILLAN

The X-Man’s frame justified that accolade and was good enough for fifth at the 2005 Mr. O.

McMillan always emphasise aesthetics over freakiness and eked out a victory at the 2017 Arnold Classic.

TONY FREEMAN

FLEX WHEELER Your humble scribe dubbed Wheeler “the Sultan of Symmetry.” He won four Arnold Classics (’93, ’97, ’98, ’00) and was twice a Mr. O runner-up (’93, ’98). —Peter McGough

44

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

DAY 5 EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Incline Bench Press

3

12, 10, 8

Flat Dumbbell Press

3

12, 10, 8

Incline Dumbbell Flye

3

10

Cable Flye

3

15

Forward Crunch Superset with Reverse Crunch

3

20

C H A R L E S L OW T H I A N. WO L F & F R E E M A N ; B I L L C O M S T O C K . M C M I L L I A N : J. M . M A N I O N. W H E E L E R : R O B E R T R E I F F. H A R R I S O N : C H R I S L U N D . R E E V E S : C O U R T E S Y O F S T E V E R E E V E S I N T E R N A T I O N A L

Move over, bench press, the dumbbell flye actually better isolates your chest, since it takes the deltoids and triceps out of the equation. Do this move slowly, stretching the muscle at the bottom of the rep.


Terry keeps his waist tight with moves like crunches and hanging leg raises.

1

SKIP WEIGHTED SIDE BENDS. “This exercise, in

which you hold a dumbbell in one hand and bend over to the side, will build your oblique muscles, but that will thicken your lower obliques—which in turn gives you a wider waist.” Instead, opt for Terry’s favourite ab exercise: hanging leg raises.

2

EXPLOIT YOUR OVERNIGHT FAST.

“I do my a.m. cardio in a fasted state—I don’t eat or drink anything beforehand or during except water. That helps my body use stored fats as energy instead of readily available food that would be in my system if I had breakfast first.”

3

COMPOUND YOUR EFFORTS. “Compound

A Model Approach Hoping to build the body of a magazine cover model? Take the advice of two-time Arnold Classic Men’s Physique champ Ryan Terry. ///

BY MICHAEL BERG

///

PHOTOGRAPHS BY STEVE SMITH

THERE’S NO SHAME in admitting it—we’d love to have the stunning shape and etched-from-granite muscularity of Ryan Terry. A two-time Arnold Classic Men’s Physique champ (2013, 2017), Terry not only represents the ideal for the division but also boasts a body everyone can appreciate. Thankfully, the 29-year-old homegrown talent is as approachable as he is proportional, and he shared his tips with us on everything from sculpting a small waist to staying lean year-round to the one ab move you should steer clear of. 38

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

exercises, which employ multiple muscle groups at once, are essential when trying to build a good physique and should be a regular part of your training routine. For example, deadlifts and squats are both great for not only strengthening your legs and back but also benefiting your core and supporting muscle groups.”

4

GIVE A LITTLE TO GET A LITTLE. “You

can’t spot reduce if you have a problem area that’s not getting lean—the body just doesn’t work like that. So you’ll have to be willing to sacrifice a little muscle when you get really deep into a diet.”

5

GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK. To sustain the

diet necessary to be lean year-round, Terry finds ways to maintain moderation. “For instance, you can try to eat clean for five days of the week and then relax your diet on the weekend.”


Arnold Press Build shoulders worthy of the Governator with this rotational shoulder blaster. ///

BY CHRIS DOHERTY

The Move

Start Position Dumbbells at shoulder level, with palms facing you Holding the dumbbells in a seated or standing position, engage your abs and glutes, keep your back rigid and chest up, and maintain a neutral head position.

l

Drive the dumbbells overhead using your shoulders, rotating your hands outward throughout the movement so you end with your palms facing forward.

l

Finish Position Arms fully extended overhead, with palms facing out Inhale through your nose into your belly and reverse the dumbbell path to lower

l

40

the weight back to your shoulders. l Maintain tightness in your glutes, abs, and back.

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

Where It Hits Deltoids and traps WHEN TO DO IT:

At the beginning of your workout with heavy weight, or to finish off your delts at the end of your workout with light weight. HOW MUCH TO DO:

3 sets, 6 to 8 reps Z E L L E R / Š F I T N E S S P U B L I C AT I O N S I N C . / C O U RT E S Y O F W E I D E R H E A LT H & F I T N E S S

Named after the legendary man who popularised them, Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Arnold press nails the front, side, and rear deltoid heads as well as the middle and upper traps. In other words, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better all-around shoulder builder than this exercise. Start with a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder level, with your palms facing your head. Exhale through your stomach as you push the dumbbells overhead while simultaneously rotating your hands outward so your palms are facing forward at the apex of the move.


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SEXUAL ROULETTE?

///

42

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

BY SUNIL SANDHU

T

The vast majority of us think we are educated when it comes to safe sex, but the STI rates are still climbing in the UK. Britain is on the brink of an STI crisis, in 2017 chlamydia made up 62% of cases. Chlamydia is difficult to identify as it sometimes doesn’t exhibit any symptoms. However, some indications that chlamydia exists include pain when passing urine, pain or bleeding during sex and pain in the stomach or pelvis. Gonorrhoea was the next most familiar STI, accompanied by genital warts and genital herpes. A huge proportion of us won’t know that you can get a sexually transmitted infection from oral sex. This is rather familiar – we are exposing ourselves to, gonorrhoea, genital herpes and syphilis. Chlamydia, HIV, hepatitis A B & C and genital warts are also an element. Albeit these are less common and carry a lower risk. The under 25 age bracket remains the most likely age group to contract STIs, but STIs can affect all age groups. Lack of condom use and no signs of infections are among the most crucial

PHOTO CREDITS: ISTOCK

BODYPOWER 2019 TO HOLD SEXUAL HEALTH SCREENINGS

hat second you saw your biology teacher put a condom on a banana, safe sex has more than likely never been that great a distance from your mind. In 2017 an astounding 422,147 sexually transmitted diseases were diagnosed in England. While screening figures fell.


causes in today’s world. The use of dating apps has erupted making the chances of having a sexual partner readily accessible and it would seem, casually more acceptable. Consequently, STIs are being passed on more speedily. So, time to review our sexual knowledge and use the precautions given to us to keep us safe. There are many questions that will always crop up from, “can I get an STI if I have cold sore” to “can I get an STI from a toilet seat“. Just to confirm, you can’t get an STI from a toilet seat. But you can give your partner herpes (a cold sore), from kissing. If you are sexually active then it’s vital to get regular sexual health check ups. There are clinics up and down the country, even at BodyPower. Going for a health check is even more important if you have just started sexual relations with somebody new, or if you have had a number of sexual partners in

a short period of time (it happens). Getting tested keeps you and your partner safe. It prevents you from infecting any future partners with an STI and if you have picked up anything then it can prevent any irreversible damage. If you don’t get checked, things like chlamydia can lead onto infertility and infections such as herpes and genital warts have no cure, simply treatments for symptoms. So it’s vital to get checked! Results are coming in much quicker, some results, such as those for HIV can come back within 15 minutes. Some STIs will require a laboratory testing. This means it might take a few days before you get the results, but don’t let this put you off getting screened. In the interim try and refrain from sexual activity without using a condom. BodyPower 2019 will be offering free and confidential screenings. These screenings

will be held in our Health Screenings area of the show. You can get tested for anything you may be concerned about and ask any questions you have. The screenings will be held from the 10th-12th May 2019. There will be some questions that will be asked and they might make you feel a little uneasy, but they’ve heard it all before and they’ve seen it all before. Nurses and doctors are not there to judge you. You will be asked questions pertaining to the number of sexual partners you’ve had and the types of sexual activity you engage in. Try and answer as honestly as you can so that the clinic staff can give you their best quality of care and advice. It is important to tell them any symptoms you may be experiencing and any concerns you might have about your sexual health. The process is simple, this can all be done for free and just to reiterate, it’s completely confidential. Sunil Sandhu NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

43


BY CARL WALKER & DANNI LEV Y

The Great Protein Scandal! “In the age of car manufacturers falsely reporting emissions, and political titans involved in election fiddling you might think the fitness bubble was miles away from a global scandal... but as you will read, ‘HIGH PROTEIN’ doesn’t always mean you’re getting a lot of protein....”

W

44

e all know consuming protein helps us to build and maintain lean muscle, whilst also burning fat. High protein diets have become so popular in recent years that it’s no surprise mainstream food manufacturers are jumping on the bandwagon. Terms like ‘protein packed’ and ‘high protein’ decorate the shelves of many a snack aisle, but are these claims substantiated scientifically?

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

Sadly, in many cases the answer is no! Whilst the European Commission states that on all packaging…

‘HIGH PROTEIN’ A claim that a food is high in protein, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer, may only be made where at least 20% of the energy value of the food is provided by protein. and…

‘SOURCE OF PROTEIN’ A claim that a food is a source of protein, and any claim likely to have the same meaning for the consumer,

may only be made where at least 12% of the energy value of the food is provided by protein. …some brands are loading these products with sugar and additives and the actual protein content is not that impressive at all! Not exactly the post-training snack your body needs! FLEX dug deep to find out which products are worth a nibble on, versus those that should remain shelved!


PHOTO CREDIT: ISTOCK

551% more protein for less money... are you being misled by “Protein” packaging

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

45


 The verdict Whilst this product just about makes it into the ‘source of protein’ bracket, 3.9g of protein is not going to burst your biceps anytime soon! There is more protein in a bowl of cooked oats! * (myfitnesspal.com based on a 40g serving)

Bar size: 28g Protein content: 3.9g Calories per bar: 119 Calories from protein: 15.6kcal Percentage of total energy of product derived from protein: 14%

normal bones. Nature Valley Protein is high in protein.

Special K Special K offer a whole range of protein meal bars and protein snack bars. They also sell bars that do not carry any protein claims on the packaging.

Special K Protein Blackcurrant and Pumpkin Seed Bars  The claim Special K Protein has been specially designed to give you the strength you need to make the most of every day. This bar is a source of protein, which contributes to the maintenance of muscle mass. It is made with a nutritious combination of ingredients that are a natural source of protein, nuts, seeds and almond butter. 46

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018

Nature Valley Protein Peanut and Chocolate Bars  The claim Nature Valley Protein Cereal Bars contain 10g of protein and are high in fibre. Nature Valley Protein Cereal Bars are the perfect on-the-go gluten free snack for any time of day. When hunger strikes, get your Nature Valley Protein Peanut & Chocolate bar, containing 20% of your daily protein needs. This gluten-free better for you snack has 40g of carefully selected ingredients, like wholesome natural peanuts, tempting chocolate and luscious peanut butter, making it a great on-the-go snack for your next adventure. Protein contributes to the maintenance of muscle mass and of

10g of protein LTA British tennis official snack bar Gluten free High in protein and fibre No artificial colours No preservatives Protein contributes to the maintenance of muscle mass and of normal bones High in protein Bar size: 40g Protein content: 10.2g Calories per bar: 198 Calories from protein: 40.8 Percentage of total energy of product derived from protein: 21%

 The verdict These bars fall into the ‘high protein’ bracket at 21%, but they do contain 6.2g sugar per bar! The protein is derived from nuts and soy making them suitable for vegetarians, but for those who train, 10g protein is definitely not 20% of your daily needs! Not a horrendous snack but once again, this ‘protein’ bar isn’t going to pump up your pecs anytime soon!


THE BOTTOM LINE Arla Protein Strawberry Yoghurt  The claim

20g protein per pot. Pot size: 200g Protein content: 20g Calories per pot: 140 Calories from protein: 80 Percentage of total energy of product derived from protein: 59%

We think it is wrong that consumers are being shown branding that highlights the word protein in such a stand out way on packaging that misleads the consumer into thinking the product is a healthy alternative. In the example above, the Special K Protein bars are 169% more expensive than a regular bar in their range, and include 1 bar less per multipack. Putting the sugar and calorie content discussion to one side and focusing on the protein claims to look in more depth at these products, per 100g, you get 8g of protein more, but at well over twice the price.

BREAKING THIS DOWN FURTHER: Special K Protein Total Multipack Weight: 112g - Protein Content: 15.6g Special K “Regular” Multipack Weight: 107.5g - Protein Content: 6.5g

LET’S TAKE THE PRICE: Price per g for the protein version of the product is £0.024p Price per g for the “regular” version of the product is £0.009p....

 The verdict This product contains a decent amount of protein and at 59% of the energy value of the total product, that’s an impressive ratio! It does contain added sugar, but all in all as a fruity snack it beats most of its supermarket competitors.

Roughly 2p per gram vs. less then a single penny per gram. Now let’s compare this to a market leading protein supplement on sale at many retailers, USN BlueLab Whey - on sale at www.thesupplementstore.co.uk at the time of printing for £42.50 for 2kg of product. Per g of the product works out at £0.021p - still less than the “protein” bar, but not far off you may think... until you also examine the amount of protein you would get in this product. To make the comparison easier let’s adjust the USN product to match the same total weight of the Special K multipack, which is 112g and contains 15.6g of protein. The equivalent of the 112g of protein powder from USN would include just over 86g of protein....a huge difference of over 70g more in the USN product to what you would get from the box of bars and for a lower price!

Tesco Finest High Protein Loaf  The claim

Seeded protein loaf Slice size: 33g Protein content: 5.10g Calories per slice: 89 Calories from protein: 20.4 Percentage of total energy of product derived from protein: 24%

 The verdict This product does cross into the ‘high protein’ threshold as more than 20% of the total energy value comes from protein. However, it does also contain caramelised sugar to enhance the taste. If you fancy a slice of bread and want a respectable amount of protein, you’re better off sticking some tuna in a roll! Products listed on www.tesco.com and www.thesupplementsstore.co.uk

To summarise, the USN product gets you 551% more protein with a saving of over 12% on the price! We are calling for the end of brands misleading consumers by simply adding the word “protein” onto labels. Whilst the products highlighted do indeed contain protein, and more than the counterpart “regular” products, FLEX disagrees that brands such as Kellogg’s should be able to make protein the prominent word on the packaging, when the product still contains a small amount of protein. Whilst EU legislation does form some preventative measures in terms of companies misusing the word protein, it does not take into account total protein content, only the protein percentage of the energy value of product. Where a product like a cereal bar weighs such a small amount, the consumer is often receiving a tiny amount of protein when compared to their total daily requirements. By and large, complete food products and specialist supplements such as the USN example contain a greater amount of protein than hyped up snacks with pretty packaging. Don’t retire the tupperware just yet! Products listed on: www.tesco.co.uk EU legislation at: ec.europa.eu NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

47


The

Gym Chef FOOD COMPANY

Recipes TANDOORI EGGS This quick recipe is really tasty, healthy and very easy to whip up on a busy evening or for lunch. It’s got a beautiful warm kick, topped with extra chilli and fresh coriander as a garnish. Serve with warm chapati or bread.

INGREDIENTS SERVES 2 1 level tsp The Gym Chef’s Tandoori seasoning mix 6 eggs, beaten 2 medium tomatoes, de-seeded and roughly chopped 1 onion, finely diced 2 garlic cloves, finely diced A small knob of butter Garnish with finely chopped chilli and coriander Serve with warm chapati or bread

METHOD PREPARATION TIME: 5 minutes Cooking time: 5 minutes 1. Place a small knob of butter in a pan and let it melt. 2. Add the finely chopped onion and garlic to the melted butter. Cook for a minute or until they colour nicely. 3. Add one teaspoon of The Gym Chef’s Tandoori seasoning mix to the pan and mix well. 4. Add the freshly chopped tomatoes to the pan and mix. Leave for 30 seconds to cook with the spices. 5. Beat the eggs and put them in the hot pan. Using a wooden spoon, mix the eggs into the mixture. The eggs will scramble quickly. 6. Once the eggs are cooked through, serve them in a bowl. Sprinkle with finely chopped chilli and coriander and serve with a warm chapati. 7. Enjoy 48

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


THE MACROS

251

18 g

CALORIES

PROTEIN

16 g

13 g

CARBS

FAT

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

49


PERI PERI CHICKEN WITH HERBY QUINOA This tasty recipe requires a little pre-planning but it’s very simple to prepare and cook. The spicy peri peri chicken is complemented by the lemon and herb quinoa, making it a perfect warming healthy evening treat. THE MACROS

50

189

25 g

CALORIES

PROTEIN

9g

6g

CARBS

FAT

FLEX | NOVEMBER 2018


INGREDIENTS

FOR THE QUINOA

SERVES 2 2 medium sized chicken breasts (approx 80-100g each)

60g dry quinoa 1-2 tsp The Gym Chef’s Lemon and Herb seasoning 120g runner beans, trimmed and sliced into 2-3cm chunks 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped finely

FOR THE PERI PERI MARINADE 2 tsp The Gym Chef’s Peri Peri seasoning 1 tbsp olive oil Juice of half a fresh lemon

METHOD PREPARATION TIME: 10 minutes Marinade time: at least 1 hour Cooking time: 30 minutes 1. Place the marinade ingredients in a ziplock food bag or bowl and combine. 2. Add the two chicken breasts and make sure they’re well covered. Ideally leave to marinade for a few hours, all day would be fine,

but a minimum of 1 hour. Potentially prepare in the morning before work and it will be perfect marinading away until you’re home. 3. Once marinaded, place the chicken fillets on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. 4. Heat the oven to 180˚C (fan) and when up to temperature, put the chicken fillets in the centre of the oven. Check after 20 minutes, however they should take around 25-30 minutes to cook through. 5. Put 300ml of cold water into a pan and bring to the boil. 6. When boiling add the quinoa and set a timer for 10 minutes. 7. Meanwhile, prepare the runner beans. 8. After 10 minutes, add the beans to the pan for a further 5 minutes. All the water should be absorbed by the quinoa after this time. 9. Finely chop the parsley. Mix the parsley and 1-2 tsp of The Gym Chef’s Lemon and Herb seasoning into quinoa just before serving. 10. When the chicken is ready, slice and place on top of the quinoa. 11. Enjoy!

NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

51


SPICY BEANS ON SWEET POTATO Within half an hour you can whip up this simple vegetarian dish which will keep you full all afternoon or evening. It’s a perfect lunch or easy dinner, very healthy and full of spice thanks to The Gym Chef’s Smoke and Spice seasoning. Topped with yoghurt and coriander, this dish the ultimate Autumnal comfort food. THE MACROS

52

386

18 g

CALORIES

PROTEIN

68 g

3g

CARBS

FAT

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INGREDIENTS SERVES 4 1-2 tsp The Gym Chef Smoke and Spice seasoning 2 large sweet potatoes (approx 300g each) Half an onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, diced or crushed 400g can of chickpeas (drained weight 240g) 400g can of black eyed beans (drained weight 235g) 400g can of kidney beans (drained weight 240g) 1 heaped tsp tomato puree 2 medium tomatoes, diced chopped roughly 400g tin of tinned tomatoes

1 tsp Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce Salt and pepper 1 tbsp chopped coriander

GARNISH Chopped coriander Spoon of yoghurt

METHOD PREPARATION TIME: 5 minutes Cooking time: 30 minutes 1. Prick the sweet potatoes and place them in the microwave for 8-10 minutes to pre-cook them. 2. Meanwhile, add diced onions and garlic to a hot pan with a little spray oil. 3. When the onions are translucent and browned, add 1-2 teaspoons of The Gym Chef’s seasoning, depending on how spicy you like things. 4. Begin preheating the oven to 180°C (fan). 5. When spices start to smoke, add chopped fresh tomatoes and tomato puree. 6. After a minute, add tinned tomatoes, chickpeas and beans. Stir together. 7. The sweet potatoes should be cooked now. Add them to a baking tray with a few teaspoons of water and put them in the oven for 15-20 minutes. When a knife slides through them easily, they are done. 8. Meanwhile, add coriander and Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce to the bean mix and leave to simmer while the potatoes finish cooking. 9. When the potatoes are ready cut them in half and serve a half per portion. Top with beans, a spoonful of yoghurt and roughly chopped coriander. 10. Enjoy.

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CRISPY POLENTA CHICKEN SALAD Autumn shouldn’t be a time to ditch the salads and polenta a trendy ingredient at the moment plus it’s a brilliant gluten free alternative to breadcrumbs. These chicken bites are marinaded in a smokey yoghurt, coated in polenta and served with a spicy mango chutney dressing that packs its own punch. A healthy, easy to prepare meal that needs a little forward planning.

INGREDIENTS Serves 2 2 medium sized chicken breasts (approx 80-100g each)

FOR THE MARINADE 3 tsp The Gym Chef’s Smoke and Spice Seasoning 3 tbsp natural yoghurt Juice of half a fresh lemon

FOR THE POLENTA CRUMB 50g dried polenta A pinch of salt 1/2 tsp The Gym Chef’s Smoke and Spice Seasoning

FOR THE DRESSING 1/4 tsp The Gym Chef’s Smoke and Spice Seasoning 2 tbsp mango chutney 2 tbsp natural yoghurt

SALAD SUGGESTION Baby leaf salad Diced cucumber Spicy sweetfire baby beetroot 54

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METHOD PREPARATION TIME: 10 minutes Marinade time: at least 1 hour Cooking time: 20 minutes

1. Place the marinade ingredients in a ziplock food bag or bowl and combine. 2. Cut the chicken into bite sized chunks and add to the marinade. Make sure they’re well coated. Ideally leave to marinade for a few hours, all day would be fine, but a minimum of 1 hour. Potentially prepare in the morning

before work and it will be perfect marinading away until you’re home. 3. Cover a baking tray in baking parchment and heat the oven to 180˚C (fan). 4. After marinading, put the polenta in a wide bowl and add the spice mix and a pinch of salt. Using a pair of tongs, roll each piece of chicken in the polenta until covered. Place each piece on the baking tray. 5. Cook the chicken in the oven for approx 15 minutes or until they are cooked through. 6. While the chicken is cooking prepare a salad. Pictured is a baby leaf salad (baby spinach, baby red chard and baby dark red leaf) with cubed cucumber and baby spicy beetroot cubed. 7. To prepare the dressing, put the ingredients in a bowl and combine. 8. When the chicken is cooked (the pieces won’t change colour too much like chicken covered in breadcrumbs would), bring all the elements together. 9. Enjoy!

THE MACROS

277

26 g

CALORIES

PROTEIN

34 g

4g

CARBS

FAT

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TANTALISING TURKEY BURGERS These herby turkey burgers are an easy, healthy alternative to your traditional beef burger. The patties are packed with lean minced turkey, cannellini beans, courgette, fresh herbs and of course, The Gym Chef’s Summer BBQ seasoning mix. Topped with avocado and homemade chunky raita, is there a better way to enjoy the darkening, colder evenings.

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INGREDIENTS

METHOD

Makes 6 burgers BURGER (makes six generous patties) 2 tsp The Gym Chef’s Summer BBQ seasoning mix Half a courgette, grated finely 200g of cannellini beans 500g lean minced turkey 1 heaped tbsp of fresh finely chopped mint 1 heaped tbsp of fresh finely chopped coriander A pinch of salt and pepper 1 egg white 1 tsp olive oil Sunflower spray oil, for cooking

1. Add the cannellini beans to a large bowl and mash roughly with a fork or potato masher. 2. Add the grated courgette, mint, coriander, salt, pepper, egg white, olive oil and seasoning mix to the bowl and combine well. The mix should be quite wet. 3. Once combined, add the minced turkey. Bring everything together carefully with your hands. The more the turkey is handled, the higher the risk of it being tough when cooked. 4. Cover a baking tray with cling film. Form 6 round patties and place them on the tray. 5. Allow at least half an hour rest in the fridge to firm up. 6. After half an hour, heat a pan, get it really hot. Spray the pan with low calorie oil, such as sunflower oil. 7. When hot, gently add your burger patties. They are quite fragile to begin with so only turn occasionally. 8. Cook the patties for around 10 -12 minutes until they begin to brown and are cooked through. Set aside and rest while you prepare the raita topping. 9. If you wish to oven bake your bread rolls, pop them in now. 10. For the raita topping, combine all the ingredients in a bowl. 11. Slice some avocado and build your burger. 12. Enjoy with a side salad or on its own.

HOMEMADE RAITA FOR TOPPING 3-4 tbsp of natural low fat yoghurt Quarter of a cucumber, diced small 4-5 large mint leaves, finely chopped Half a teaspoon of olive oil Pinch of salt 6 burger rolls - ciabatta rolls used the example above. Avocado, thinly sliced, also added as extra topping PREPARATION TIME: 10 minutes Fridge rest: 30 minutes Cooking time: 15 minutes

THE MACROS

161

20 g

CALORIES

PROTEIN

11 g

4g

CARBS

FAT

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500 CALORIE FEASTS Getting multiple nutritious meals down needn’t be a problem when you can feast for under 500 calories AND hit your macros!

CHARLES DEVELOPED THESE #500CALORIEFEASTS WITH DISCIPLINE IN MIND. Each of these recipes comes in at around the 500 calorie mark and contains least 30 grams of high quality protein. Whilst many muscle building meals can be quite bland and leave you feeling as if you’re missing out, these flavoursome dishes make eating an enjoyable experience. /// BY CHARLES TOWNEND

HIGH PROTEIN STRAWBERRY PANCAKES Let’s look at starting the day with a good dose of protein and slow digesting carbohydrates. The great thing about these pancakes is that they can be batch made and frozen ahead of time.

FOR THE TOPPING 50 gms Chopped Strawberries 50 gms Fat Free Yogurt (Optional) Calorie Free Sauce

INGREDIENTS FOR 4 MEDIUM SIZED PANCAKES 1 Whole Egg 2 Egg Whites 80 gms Fat Free Cottage Cheese 75 gms Porridge Oats ½ Teaspoon Of Cinnamon

METHOD v Place whole eggs, egg whites, cottage cheese, oats and cinnamon in a food blender. Blend until batter is a lump free smooth texture. If the batter is too thick, it can be thinned out with a little almond milk. v Spray a small frying pan with 1 kcal spray and heat until the pan is smoking. Pour ¼ of the mixture into the pan and cook for 30-60 seconds or until the batter is semi-set. Flip the pancake and cook the other side for another 30 seconds. v The 4 pancakes can be topped with the yogurt and chopped strawberries, along with the calorie free sauce.

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Macro Split – Calories – 480kcals Carbohydrates – 54 gms Fat – 11 gms Protein – 34 gms Fibre – 9 gms Sodium – 184 mg


SWEET CHILLI PRAWN PASTA Mixing whole grain pasta with a low-fat protein source makes this a great choice for anyone looking for a tasty meal whilst keeping their calories in check. Using wholegrain pasta can add a huge hit of fibre to your daily intake.

INGREDIENTS FOR 1 PORTION 300 gms (Cooked Weight) King Prawns 60 gms (Uncooked Weight) Wholewheat Pasta 200 gms Chopped Tomatoes 50 gms Frozen Peas 25 ml of Blue Dragon Sweet Chilli Sauce 1 Clove of Crushed Garlic (or 1 spoon of garlic paste) 1 Chopped Red Chilli (or 1 spoon of red chilli paste)

METHOD v Bring a pan of water to the boil and add the pasta. Let this come back to the boil then turn down the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes. v To a frying pan, add the prawns, peas, chilli and garlic and cook for 2 minutes over a low heat until the prawns turn pink. Add the chopped tomatoes to the prawns and cook for another minute. v Drain the pasta and add to the frying pan along with the tomato prawn mixture. Toss the mixture together and final add in the sweet chilli sauce. Serve with a side salad.

Macro Split – PER PORTION Calories – 538 kcals Carbohydrates – 65 gms Fat – 2 gms Protein – 53 gms Fibre – 7 gms Sodium – 1130 mg

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HIGH PROTEIN TANDOORI CHICKEN SKEWERS

dish. There is a little preparation time in this, so I would look at marinating the chicken overnight to ensure a well-developed flavour.

A lower calorie, higher protein alternative to the conventional Saturday night takeaway. The baking of the skewers eliminates any need for cooking oil and reduces the calorie content. If you have no skewers then the recipe can still be used as a regular curry

INGREDIENTS FOR 1 PORTION

Macro Split – PER PORTION Calories – 375 kcals Carbohydrates – 18 gms Fat – 5 gms Protein – 66 gms Fibre – 4 gms Sodium – Minimal Serve with 125gms of Basmati Rice for another 140 Kcals

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150gms (Cooked Weight) Chicken Breast 160 gms Cherry Tomatoes (approx. 10) 150 gms Sliced Courgette 150 gms Fat Free Yogurt

2 Cloves of Garlic – crushed (Or 2 teaspoons of Garlic paste) 2 Chopped Chillies (or 2 spoons of Chilli paste) 2 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon 1 Teaspoon Cumin 1 Teaspoon Coriander 1 Teaspoon Paprika 1 Handful Chopped Coriander Leaves

METHOD v In a large bowl, mix the yogurt, spices and lemon juice and stir into a smooth paste. Chop the RAW chicken into equal sized pieces, approximately ¾ inch square. Add the chicken to the spiced yogurt mix. Cover this with cling film and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour. v Remove chicken from the bowl and place one piece on the skewer, follow this with 1 tomato and 1 piece of courgette. Repeat this process until all chicken is used. v Pre heat the oven to 200 celsius or Gas Mark 6. Place the skewers on a baking tray and cook for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, rotate the skewers and return to the oven for another 10 minutes or until cooked. v Use the chopped coriander as a garnish. v This can be served with rice for an extra hit of carbohydrates.


MUSCLE BUILDING CHILLI CON CARNE A little adaptation on the familiar chilli con carne. By using turkey as opposed to beef (optional), you can reduce the fat levels and calorie content, whilst keeping the protein high. A great tasting main meal which can be batch cooked in advance. INGREDIENTS FOR 4 PORTIONS 800 gms Low Fat Turkey Mince (sub 3%) – this will cook down to approximately 650 gms 1 Can (400gms) Chopped Tomatoes 1 Can (400gms/240 gms drained weight) Kidney Beans 150 gms Chopped Onions 2 Cloves of Garlic (crushed) 1 Teaspoon Chilli Powder 2 Teaspoons Cumin Powder 2 Teaspoons Ground Coriander 3 Tablespoons Tomato Puree 1 Beef Stock Cube 1 Teaspoon Oregano

METHOD v In a large non-stick frying pan, cook the turkey mince and onions over a medium heat. Cook this for 5 minutes until the mince start to colour. To this add the garlic, chilli powder, cumin and ground coriander and cook for another 2 minutes. Dissolve the stock cube in 200ml of hot water and add this to the meat and onions, along with the chopped tomatoes and drained kidney beans. Add the oregano, stir well and cover with a lid. Simmer for 30 minutes until the meat is cooked and the onions are soft.

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Macro Split – PER PORTION (Using turkey) Calories – 350kcals Carbohydrates – 20 gms Fat – 3 gms Protein – 58 gms Fibre – 6 gms Sodium – 188 mg *Serve with 150 gms of Cauliflower Rice for an extra 70kcals

Charles Townend is a personal trainer at L1 Performance in Leeds. Instagram: @Team_T_Charles


BY ADAM BIBLE

Can Plant Protein Get You Jacked?

Or are you better off sticking with an animal-based protein like whey? OPENING ARGUMENTS Defence

Protein is protein, no matter where it comes from. Your body (and muscles) don’t care about the origin of the protein macronutrient that you’re ingesting after a hard workout. It will be utilised the same way. This is why there are plenty of vegetarian bodybuilders and strength athletes who have excelled at their particular sport on a plant-based diet. Prosecution

Sure, protein is simply a molecule that helps build up bones, muscles, and tissue, but all protein sources aren’t equal. The amino acids that make up protein are important, and not all protein sources contain a full batch of the essential aminos our bodies need for optimum performance. Animal sources usually contain all the essential aminos, whereas plant-based powders have to have them added, which can be less effective.

EVIDENCE

G E T T Y I M AG E S ; P E R B E R NA L

A 2013 study published in Nutrition Journal had 24 guys lift weights and supplement with either whey protein or rice protein (at a high dose) for eight weeks. Researchers found no difference in metrics like muscle thickness, fat loss, strength, and power. Some claim that soy protein can affect hormone levels in men (and spur breast growth), but recent research by St. Catherine University in Minnesota showed that soy protein isolate had no effect 64

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on any levels of the hormones tied to reproduction in men. Research in Journal of the American College of Nutrition in 2013 found that when whey was stacked up against soy supplements after resistance training, those taking whey ended up with almost double the lean muscle mass gains. A recent study from Florida International University looked at MMA fighters who supplemented with either whey or rice protein during intense training. They found no significant differences in body composition after six weeks.

VERDICT THERE ARE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PROTEIN SOURCED FROM ANIMALS AND PROTEIN DERIVED FROM PLANTS, BUT THEY AREN’T SIGNIFICANT ENOUGH TO RECOMMEND ONE OVER THE OTHER. With whey protein, you’re getting a complete profile of aminos, but a multisource plant protein powder can cover the bases.

SENTENCING Go with whichever you prefer. Some guys say that whey protein upsets their stomachs; if that’s the case for you, go with whey-free protein. Either way, try to get in about one gram of protein per pound of body weight per day.


OAT-ILY DELICIOUS

CREATE THESE SWEET FEASTS FAST WITH CJ’S PICK ‘N’ MIX OATS BY DANNI LEVY PHOTOGRAPHS BY PICK ‘N’ MIX OATS ///

///

‘Sweet, tasty and wholesome’ We recommend using the following ratios with ingredients. (Macros may vary depending on brand of protein powder used) • Oats 2 : 1 Protein Powder • Add water, unsweetened coconut milk or unsweetened almond milk Eg – 20g Oats, 10g Protein Powder, 5g of Toppings + 50ml of Milk would create the following macros • 164 Kcals / 12g Protein / 18g Carbs / Fat 4g

Peaches and Cream Protein Oats Ingredients • Peach and Cream Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Peach Sweets Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

CJ’S PICK ‘N’ MIX OATS would love to hear how you get on with the above recipes, or if you have any inspiration for them, they love trying out new recipes. Instagram: @picknmixoats www.picknmixoats.com 66

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Oats Ingredients – • Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Peanut Butter Candies Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice


Strawberry Cheesecake Protein Oats

Raspberry Pop Protein Oats

Ingredients – • Strawberry Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Lotus Biscoff Biscuits Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

Ingredients • Raspberry Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Popping Candy Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

Chocolate Caramel Millionaire Shortbread Protein Oats

White Chocolate and Cherry Protein Oats

Ingredients – • Chocolate Caramel Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Zillionaire Cake Pieces Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

Ingredients – • White Chocolate Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • White Chocolate Drops • Dried Cherries Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

Birthday Cake Protein Oats

Apple Crumble & Custard Protein Oats

Ingredients – • Birthday Cake Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Hundreds and Thousands Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice

Ingredients – • Apple Crumble Protein Powder • Scottish Jumbo Oats • Custard Cream’s Recipe – Mix all together with liquid of choice NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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THE F LEX

STEROID ENCYCLOPEDIA

From testosterone to “bitch tits” to HGH—here are the most popular drugs and terms used in the bodybuilding community, broken down. BY MICHAEL WEINREB /// PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAVID ARKY

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HAT FOLLOWS IS A LIST OF

commonly used steroids, performance enhancers, and terminology in the bodybuilding community. Nearly every one of the compounds on this list is illegal to possess without a doctor’s prescription. Most steroids used by casual bodybuilders are often acquired from underground sources without any verification of the product’s efficacy. There are few long-term studies on steroids, so most information is anecdotal, not scientific fact. But there is more medical knowledge about the acute short-term effects. “We have to educate people,” says Thomas O’Connor, aka the “Anabolic Doc,” who specialises in patients seeking recovery from anabolic-steroid use. O’Connor does not advocate the use of any of these drugs and has dozens of horror stories from patients to support his position—including, in extreme cases, death. But he also knows that he cannot stop people from experimenting. And Fakhri Mubarak, a prep coach who speaks openly about his own steroid use, strongly recommends finding a health professional you can work with if you do choose to use performance enhancers.

ANADROL

ANAVAR

“A cheap bulking [oral] steroid but with many serious downsides,” Mubarak says. Gains are often due to water retention, and “you’ll lose more than half your gains after ceasing.” ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: An “old-school” steroid originally prescribed to help with weight gain after surgery or infection and occasionally to treat osteoporosis or hormonal conditions. “This one’s a monster,” O’Connor says. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Puiness and water retention, gynecomastia, acne, rapid weight gain, stomach pain, and many others, including high cholesterol and stroke. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: No longer than eight weeks. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 50 to 100 milligrams (mg) daily.

■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY: “One

■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

of the best anabolic steroids for cutting overall,” Mubarak says. An oral steroid often stacked with Winstrol or testosterone. The general consensus among bodybuilders is that women better tolerate it than they do some other steroids. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: Originally prescribed for weight gain, recovery from burns, and osteoporosis. “It’s known to be one of the weaker and less toxic steroids with minimal side effects, depending upon dosage,” O’Connor says—but it’s also one of the more expensive ones. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: High blood pressure and lower HDL (or good) cholesterol, acne, hair loss, depression. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: Eight weeks, often stacked with testosterone. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 10 to 50mg daily, sometimes up to 80mg.

ANDROGEN: Any hormone that promotes male sex characteristics, such as testosterone. Steroids that bodybuilders use are generally referred to in academic texts as “anabolic androgenic steroids.”

ARIMIDEX ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

Not a steroid but viewed as an ancillary drug meant more “to combat or mitigate various oestrogen related side effects” like gynecomastia and bloating, Mubarak says, and is occasionally used during post-cycle therapy as well. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: One of a family of oral anti-oestrogen drugs, it’s most often used as a treatment for certain forms of breast cancer. “These drugs are massively dangerous because they deplete your HDL cholesterol profile,” O’Connor says. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Heart issues, fatigue, headaches, high blood pressure, hot flashes, joint pain or osteoporosis, depression. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: 2 to 6 weeks. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 0.5 to 1mg daily. AROMATISE: The process that converts testosterone into oestrogen. Aromatising above and beyond normal male oestrogen levels when taking steroids can lead to increased fat around the waist, gynecomastia or other feminine characteristics, and other more serious health issues. BLENDING: To combine steroids with other drugs.

CLENBUTEROL ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

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liver problems, water retention, enlarged prostate, loss of appetite, depression, low sperm count, as well as life-threatening conditions like liver cancer, stroke, and heart failure. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: Up to 12 weeks. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 200 to 600mg per week.

DIANABOL One of the oldest and most popular performance enhancers, it increases testosterone levels and promotes muscle growth. It also has numerous—and oten serious—side efects—so some bodybuilders have begun experimenting with alternate versions. “When you think of bodybuilders of the ’70s, this is the one,” O’Connor says. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: Originally used for muscle wasting and anaemia. Cheap and mass building. “Very toxic to the liver,” O’Connor says. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Water retention, gynecomastia, acne, hair loss, liver damage, infertility, depression, sleeplessness, testicular shrinkage, potential serious heart issues. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: 4 to 6 weeks. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 30 to 50mg daily. ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

muscle mass. Used oten by women. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: An oral antiasthma medication in certain countries, clenbuterol can “unlock fat and muscle tissue cells throughout the body,” says steroid researcher Victoria Felkar. It’s also dangerous enough that it’s been banned for use in bulking up livestock. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Jitters (“clen shakes”), sweating, headaches, nausea, muscle cramps, insomnia—and if used too often or too long, it can result in high blood pressure and serious heart issues. “This is like drinking 10 cups of coffee or five Red Bulls,” O’Connor says. “Some people have ended up in the emergency room because of it.” ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: Oten two weeks on, two weeks of, to avoid building a tolerance. 70

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■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 20 to 40

micrograms (mcg) daily CYCLE: The time during which a particular steroid is taken, usually followed by a similar amount of time off the cycle.

DECA-DURABOLIN An injectable steroid that originated back in the ’70s, usually taken with testosterone. Used for building mass. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: Used clinically—though not frequently— for serious conditions like cancer, anemia, and AIDS. “It’s a pretty bulky drug,” O’Connor says. “It’s not a cutting drug.” ■ SIDE EFFECTS: “Deca-dick” (erectile dysfunction, particularly if taken without adequate testosterone), gynecomastia, acne, ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

EQUIPOISE An old-school injectable bulking steroid that “increases appetite and stamina,” Mubarak says. Usually stacked with testosterone. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: A testosterone derivative originally tested on humans, equipoise (EQ) is used in veterinary medicine, particularly on horses. When you buy it underground, O’Connor says, it will often say “not for human consumption.” ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Lowered HDL cholesterol, muscle tears from overuse, impaired sexual function, acne, gynecomastia, hair loss, oily skin, aggression, elevated blood pressure, increased appetite. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: 8 to 12 weeks. ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

G A RY P H I L L I P S

If using, Mubarak says: “Get your blood work done every four months and see an organ specialist once a year.”


HGH (HUMAN GROWTH HORMONE) ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY: “May stimulate the

body to break down fat,” Mubarak says, and can have a “synergistic effect” with steroids to promote leanness, O’Connor adds. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: Not actually a steroid, HGH is an injectable protein that is approved for use for certain children as well as adults. This is the No. 1 drug used at anti-aging facilities. Extremely expensive, but doesn’t cause male sexual side effects, according

■ HOW IT’S DOSED:

300 to

400mg per week.

to O’Connor. Questions about both its long-term safety and its effect on athletic performance and anti-aging have yet to be resolved. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Nerve, muscle, and joint pain, swelling, high cholesterol, tingling or numb skin, carpal tunnel syndrome. It may also increase the risk of diabetes by “blocking the effects on insulin,” O’Connor says, and may contribute to the growth of cancerous tumours. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 2 to 4 international units (IU) daily is the most common amount for anti-aging, and up 10 IU for bodybuilding purposes.

“Juicing” refers to using injectable steroids.

OESTROGEN: The female sex

hormone. GEAR: A slang term for steroids, syringes, and any other steroid-related equipment. GYNECOMASTIA: Also known as “bitch tits,” it’s usually brought on by a hormonal imbalance from taking steroids, though it can also occur naturally. HCG: Human chorionic gonadotropin, a hormone often used in post-cycle therapy to normalise hormone levels and stimulate testosterone production. NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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INSULIN: Used by diabetics but co-opted by bodybuilders to gain bulk and increase stamina, sometimes as part of a “kitchen sink” stack of steroids, insulin, and HGH. “People take insulin before and ater training,” O’Connor says. “I had one patient who used to steal it from his grandmother.” Mild side effects include bloating, but misuse of insulin can also lead to heart problems and hypoglycemic shock, which can be fatal.

PROVIRON ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

Generally not cycled on its own, it’s an orally active form of DHT (dihydrotestosterone), and DHT is “what makes muscle hard,” Mubarak says. It’s also believed to prevent anti-estrogen from forming. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: An oestrogen steroid, O’Connor says, used for post-cycle therapy or added to a cycle

to prevent oestrogen conversion. Bodybuilders (most of whom don’t consider it a steroid) believe it can mitigate the sexual side effects of other steroids. ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Generally mild but include headaches, fluid retention, sexual issues, depression. and irritability. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 25 to 50mg daily, Mubarak says.

JUICE: A slang term for injectable steroids. POST-CYCLE THERAPY: The use of various compounds to attempt to normalise the body from a hormonal perspective after a steroid cycle. PROHORMONES: Compounds that convert to anabolic hormones—the most wellknown being androstenedione, which was found in baseball player Mark McGwire’s locker during his record 1998 home run hitting season. These compounds were made illegal under the Designer Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 2014. “Your body converts it to a steroid in your liver,” O’Connor says. “They can actually be more devastating than actual steroids.” PYRAMIDING: Slowly escalating your steroid use until you reach a peak midcycle, and then tapering down after that. SARMS: Selective androgen receptor modulators, or non-steroidal drugs that grow muscle. A recent study by the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that many of these products contain unapproved substances, hormones, or even steroids. 72

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SHOT GUNNING/“BLAST AND CRUISE”: Taking steroids

inconsistently, or “blasting” on low-dose steroids and then “cruising” into a cycle. STACKING: Using multiple steroids at once, often in conjunction with other drugs. SYNTHOL: This is not a steroid but rather an oil injected into muscles to increase muscle size or change the shape of muscles. Synthol is technically legal, but some reports have shown that it can have a permanent deforming efect on muscles, as well as a number of other side efects, ranging from skin ruptures to infection to nerve damage.

TESTOSTERONE ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

“Test” is considered “the base of each steroid cycle,” whether you’re cutting or bulking, Mubarak says. There are three major types: cypionate, enanthate, and propionate, all of which can be used for cutting, he says. Additionally, enanthate can be used to add lean muscle mass. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: “Everyone uses testosterone,” O’Connor says. “The problem with it is that you’re going to crash. That’s why people wind up doing post-cycle therapy.” ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Gynecomastia, bloating, high blood pressure, cholesterol issues, testicular atrophy. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: 10 to 12 weeks for a newbie user.


500 to 600mg per week for a middleweight person (165 to 198 pounds).

■ HOW IT’S DOSED:

TRENBOLONE ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY:

Considered one of the most effective steroids by bodybuilders, “tren” (an injectable) is divided into two types—acetate and enanthate. “It helps you lose big amounts of body fat and gain big amounts of muscle mass,” Mubarak says. “It will give you some aggression, too.” ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY: Another drug used on animals, it’s “the strongest one on this list,” O’Connor says. “It causes a very hard, grainy, non-bloated effect. It’s a steroid on steroids. Also, it’s massively toxic and debilitating to sex.” ■ SIDE EFFECTS: “Tren cough,” a severe cough that usually comes on immediately after injection, “tren dick,” or low sex drive, high blood pressure, night sweats, gynecomastia, acne,

hair loss, insomnia, anxiety, rapid heart rate, aggression, decreased cardiovascular endurance, kidney and liver issues. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED: 10 weeks maximum. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED: 300 to 600mg per week.

UG: Slang term for the unregulated underground labs where most steroids are manufactured. Often, the “lab” can be something as simple as a room in an apartment or just a bathtub.

WINSTROL ■ WHAT BODYBUILDERS SAY: An oral and injecta-

ble steroid that works for cutting, Mubarak says, but it “can also be included during bulking cycles, as it increases muscle mass and hardens the appearance of your body.” Often stacked with Anavar and testosterone propionate, this is the drug that Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson tested positive for during the 1998 Olympics, sparking the prohibition on steroids in the United States. ■ WHAT EXPERTS SAY:

“This is a big cutting drug,” O’Connor says. “It devastates the lipid [cholesterol] panel, and I see tons of muscle tears.” ■ SIDE EFFECTS: Dry joints and acne are common side effects among bodybuilders, Mubarak says. Others can include hair loss, liver damage, cholesterol issues, mood swings, sexual dysfunction, and testicular atrophy. ■ HOW IT’S CYCLED:

6 to 8 weeks. ■ HOW IT’S DOSED:

10 to 50mg daily.

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BY MICHAEL BERG

Photograph by Chris Nicoll

Moving on Up How 2018 Women’s Physique International champ Shanique Grant overcame bullying—and blossomed into a formidable women’s physique competitor. SINCE SHE STARTED competing in 2014, Shanique Grant has been a dominant force— first earning IFBB Pro League status at just 19 years old in the figure division, then switching gears to women’s physique, where at the age of 22 she claimed this year’s Women’s Physique International crown. Grant exudes confidence, a hardearned right after surviving a few tough trials growing up. Born in Kingston, Jamaica, she relocated with her family to New Jersey at age 4. There, she took up running for eight years through high school, focusing mainly on the 55-, 100-, and 400-meter races, as well as the high jump. But instead of being celebrated for her athleticism, she was bullied. “I was a super skinny runner who got beat up weekly for no reason,” Grant recalls. “It led me to a very dark place. My friends left me because I was a target. I fell into a depression. Track let me disappear into my own thoughts.” Then, at age 18, Grant found herself in the hospital. Her kidneys TRAINING

GRANT’S REAR-DELT AND BACK BURNER EX ERCI SE

Cable Facepull With Rope Superset with Cable Pull to Chest*

S E TS

RE P S

4

15

4

15

*In this superset, the first move— pulling the ends of the rope toward your face—focuses on the rear delts, while the second move hits the middle back muscles.

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were failing from years of junk food. Her doctor told her that she had to add weight to her 105-pound frame and suggested she hit the gym. She cleaned up her diet, began pumping iron, and got hooked.

“I fell in love with the discipline and just having complete control at that one moment when lifting,” she says. With the help of coach John Casalena, Grant secured her pro card—after only three shows—at the 2014 NPC Nationals. Her well-developed muscularity made women’s physique a better fit, and now Grant—who is also returning to school to pursue a career in law has just bagged the most prestigious prize in the sport. In her women’s physique Olympia debut, Grant took first place fighting off some stiff competition.. “Whatever I put my mind to, I will make it happen,” Grant says. “I have a saying on my wall: ‘It’s going to be tougher than ever. Some days will be harder than others. Just hold your head high, get it done, leave no stone unturned— focus.’ ”

SHANIQUE GRANT Birth Date: 10th August, 1995 Height: 5'7" Contest Weight: 67 kg Residence: Chicago, Illinois Website: shaniquegrant.com Instagram: @therealfitnessbeauty


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TRAIN SMART! BY DANNI LEVY

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To Be

Frank Three-time Mr. Olympia Frank Zane shares what helped him stand out on bodybuilding’s biggest stage. BY ROGER LOCKRIDGE

Of the 13 men to have won a Mr. Olympia title, Frank Zane has cemented his legacy in more ways than one. In addition to being the fifth bodybuilder to secure an O title (he won three, actually), Zane boasted a 190-pound masterpiece of a physique that became the standard of aesthetics. His combination of presentation, symmetry, and conditioning was enough to claim victory over several major names of the Golden Era, including Arnold Schwarzenegger, whom he defeated at the Mr. Universe in 1968. And since he’s the godfather of aesthetics, we asked Zane to bequeath 10 of his favourite training tips so that you, too, can carve out your ideal body. SNAPSHOT

Birth Date: 28th June, 1942 Height: 5'9" Weight: 84kg (contest); 91kg (off-season) Birthplace: Kingston, Pennsylvania Career Highlights: 1968 Mr. America, 1st; 1968 Mr. Universe, 1st; 1977–79 Olympia, 1st; 1982 Mr. Olympia, 2nd Instagram: @officialfrankzane

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PUMP CHASING

Early on, the flat bench press is good for building pec, delt, and triceps mass, but its usefulness doesn’t last. Currently, I train my pecs only once a week, and I start each workout with the incline bench press—and using dumbbells with a neutral grip allows for a better stretch. Then I move on to the pec deck. If you don’t have access to a good pec deck, then dumbbells on a slight decline are your best option. For the pec deck, I keep the reps in the six-to-12 range, working up in weight and down in reps. Parallel dips on a dip machine are also great. I do higher reps for this exercise, about 15, 12, 10 reps as I increase weight.

Follow the pump. I remind myself to do this whenever I train my triceps. It’s also my reasoning for working tri’s right after chest—to take full advantage of the ample blood flow already in that area. The triceps make up two-thirds of your arm mass, which is why they deserve more time and focus than their counterparts, the biceps. Three of my favourite exercises for tri’s include closegrip bench presses, pushdowns, and overhead dumbbell extensions. I suggest performing these three moves twice per week. Go with reps in the 12-to15 range so that you can really focus on getting ample blood flow to the muscle.

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Dumbbell Incline Press Lie down on a bench adjusted to 45 degrees, with a dumbbell in each hand, palms in. Press dumbbells up until over chest, twisting palms out, then lowering them back down.

ANNIHILATE YOUR ABS I always did a lot of ab work—as I neared a show, I would perform 1,000 reps of various ab moves, for a total of 30 minutes. I liked to superset crunches with leg raises—which I did in the now hard-to-find Roman chair—

P R E V I O U S S P R E A D A N D T H I S PAG E : Z E L L E R / © F I T N E S S P U B L I C AT I O N S I N C .

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SKIP FLAT BENCH


GA R DN E R/COU RT E SY OF W E I DE R H E A LT H & F I T N E S S

Hanging Knee Raise performing 50 reps of each. Then I would do hanging knee raises and seated twists.

STRETCH OUT Optimal blood flow is a key to growth, as it floods the muscle with more nutrients for better

recovery. To help this process, I performed a stretch for the body part I was working between each set. After a set of cable rows, for example, I’d perform a two-arm lat stretch. [Grab on to a sturdy object with arms fully extended and lean into it.] This also

Hang from a pull-up bar with a shoulder-width grip, legs and arms fully extended. Bend your knees so they’re 90 degrees. Then brace your core and raise your bent legs up toward your chest.

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enhances your flexibility, which will help keep you injury-free.

DON’T PROGRAM HOP

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FOCUS UP When I’m in the gym, I’m not thinking about anything other than getting a damn good workout. I never wanted to talk to anyone during a workout, especially if I was training for something, because that’s a distraction. I went as far as to always try to go to the gym when there was hardly anybody

Seated Twist You’ll be hard-pressed to find it nowadays, but Zane credits his ab development to the Roman chair. To mimic one, sit on a bench, perpendicularly, with your feet wedged under heavy dumbbells. Then lean back.

Z E L L E R / © F I T N E S S P U B L I C AT I O N S I N C .

This whole concept of changing your training regimen every month never appealed to me— the reason being that you never get good at anything. If you want to improve at something, you have to do it a lot—after all, the basis of learning is repetition. And that’s what you do in the gym; we’re educating the muscles by doing a lot of sets and a lot of reps.


Z E L L E R / © F I T N E S S P U B L I C AT I O N S I N C .

Though competitors, Zane and Arnold would train together at Gold’s Gym in Venice, CA.

there. Or, if there were people around, they were other serious gym goers. At Gold’s Gym in Venice, California, in the late ’60s and early ’70s, if you went to the gym at 6:30 or 7 in the morning, the people there were serious about their workouts. There was no talking, no noise, and no distractions. By 9 a.m., all the loud mouths wandered in. Fortunately, I was on my way out by then.

MAINTAIN TO GAIN The idea of maintenance is to prevent regression while improving weak points. Therefore, you shouldn’t focus too much on your strong points—

working these areas once a week is enough, just to get a good pump. So I recommend hitting your lagging body part three days in a row, followed by three full days of rest. Since this type of training is extremely taxing, you shouldn’t do it for more than three consecutive weeks. It’s also important to gauge your intensity accordingly, so don’t do as many sets to start. Doing four to five sets of the specialisation exercise you choose works well in the beginning.

DIET SMART Throughout my career, I was never a big carbohydrate freak.

There were always fewer carbohydrates in my diet than there was protein. I kept protein at one gram per pound of body weight, usually between 190 and 200 grams per day. My carbs stayed between 70 and 150 grams, and fat made up around 25% of my total calories. I never went above 3,000 calories. I’d just get fat doing that. The way I did it was a seasonal approach. I would train hard in the summer and peak in the fall. I would go into maintenance mode in the winter and build back up in the spring. I wasn’t peaked all the time, but I always stayed on top of my nutrition and supplementation. NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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MASTER MOTIVATION

SET REASONABLE GOALS To make consistent progress, you should set sensible goals.

Frank Zane’s Training Split DAY

EXERCISE

Day 1

Back, Biceps, Forearms, Abs

Frank Zane’s Back, Biceps, Forearms, and Abs Workout EXERCISE

SETS

REPS

Day 2

Abs, Thighs, Calves

Lat Pulldown

3

10

Day 3

Chest, Shoulders, Triceps, Abs

Bentover Barbell Row

3

10

Day 4

Off

3

10

Day 5

Cycle Repeats

One-arm Dumbbell Row Low-cable Row

3

10

Behind-theneck Pull-down

3

10

Straight-arm Pull-down

3

10

Dumbbell Concentration Curl

3

10, 8, 8

Low-incline Dumbbell Curl

3

10

One-arm Cable Curl

3

10

Alternating Dumbbell Curl

3

8

Reverse Barbell Curl

3

10

Wrist Curl

3

15

Crunches Superset with Leg Raise

5

50

5

50

Hanging Knee Raise Superset with Seated Twist

5

50

5

50

If you’re just starting out, then aiming to compete on the Olympia stage—let alone win the contest—is probably too lofty. Adding an inch to your arms in three months is doable and also gives you focus in your training. But don’t sacrifice yourself to your goals to the point where you can’t be happy in the moment. Because if you’re always striving for something you don’t have, what does that say about right now? Try to have both.

Zane works his hammies as bodybuilding icon Joe Weider looks on.

Hamstring Curl Zane trained his legs only once per week, but when he did, he attacked them with ferocity. This intense training style, applied to all body parts, helped him achieve perfect balance.

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T H I S PAG E : C O U RT E S Y O F W E I D E R H E A LT H & F I T N E S S . O P P O S I T E : B O B G A R D N E R / C O U RT E S Y O F W E I D E R H E A LT H & F I T N E S S

Motivation is based on two things. When you start out, it’s a different kind of motivation. Most people begin to work out in the gym because they don’t like where they’re at and they want to improve. That’s called deficiency motivation. That’s good motivation to start with. Then, after you do it for a while and you’ve made improvement, you’re motivated to keep going because you want even more improvement. That’s the best kind of motivation to have if you’re going to keep doing this— to get rewarded for what you’re doing. Give yourself a reward, and I don’t mean eating junk food or doing something that’s contrary to your goals. Reward yourself in a positive way.


One-arm Cable Curl Standing perpendicular to the cable pulley allows you to better isolate your biceps.

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BY DANNI LEVY

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PHOTOGRAPHS BY SIMON HOWARD

IFBB ATHLETE, BRITISH CHAMPION AND OWNER OF THE MUSCLE UNIT GYM ROB BOWMAN TAYLOR SHARES HIS LEG ROUTINE FOR GAINZ THAT SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES! Rob hits legs from all angles alternating between quads and hamstrings then finishing on calves. He trains legs 2 x a week during prep for condition, especially in the glutes and 1 x a week off-season. 86

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LEG EXTENSIONS

3 x warm up sets of 20 REPS 2 x working sets of 12 REPS (3 second slow negatives)

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PENDULUM SQUATS (FOOT POSITION HIGH TO ISOLATE HAMSTRINGS)

2 x 8-10 warm-up sets 2 x 6-8 heavy working sets (controlled negatives)

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LEG PRESS (FOOT POSITION LOW TO ISOLATE QUADS)

4 x sets of 10 REPS 1 x 8-10 REPS max weight set followed by a 50% de-load in weight and dropset to failure

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SEATED CALF RAISES, SUPERSET WITH BODYWEIGHT STANDING CALF RAISES

4 x 15 of each

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HACK SQUAT (TOES OUTWARDS)

2 x warm up sets of 10-12 REPS 2 x working sets of 10-12REPS On the last set de-load the weight by 50% and drop until failure

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STANDING HAMSTRING CURL

STIFF LEG DUMBBELL DEADLIFTS 2 x warm up sets of 10-12 REPS 3 x warm up sets of 20 REPS 2 x working sets of 12 REPS (3 second slow negatives)

2 x working sets of 8-10 REPS On the last set de-load the weight by 50% and drop until failure Instagram: @therealmuscleunit NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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NATURAL

GAINZ ///

BY DANNI LEVY AND DARREN NICHOLHURST

///

PHOTOGRAPHS BY SIMON HOWARD

GAVIN GIBSON knows a thing or two about growing naturally. The 36-year-old WNBF Pro from Bedfordshire recently took the classic physique win at the 2 Bros Ben Weider Classic.

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What made you choose to stay natural? I didn’t really ‘choose’ to be natural per se. When I started bodybuilder ten years ago I didn’t know much about it to be honest and my coach back then was natural. We trained with other natural guys and I was winning shows! The more I got into the natural scene and continued to win natural shows, the less I wanted to do anything else. Getting chemical assistance isn’t something I particularly want to do. Now I’m competing with the IFBB my physique carries quite well. I don’t have to be a 100kg bodybuilder now that there’s a classic physique class. There are horses for courses. How does your diet differ from an assisted athlete? I know quite a lot of guys who are assisted and diet wise there’s not a lot of difference. They can probably get away with eating less protein and less carbohydrate because the fullness is retained through the anabolics. I do have to be more careful coming into a show because if I’m 2-3 days out and holding a lot of water then I’m in trouble. But diet wise there’s not much difference. As a small child, were you sporting or did you have family that was? Yes I was a swimmer from a very young age. I remember my dad having me do squats, sit-ups and press-ups in the living room and I must have only been about 5 years old. I was athletic at school but swimming was always my main sport. Competitions for young kids didn’t exist so I was regularly swimming against and beating kids a few years older than me so the squats paid off! Then I switched to semi-pro football in my late teens, which ended with an injury and then moved onto MMA. The gym was the backbone to all of it though, so it was a natural progression continuing that path into bodybuilding. Who was your first inspiration and why? We didn’t have social media back then so I never really aspired to be like anyone. I just kind of did me. When I got into bodybuilding properly though the old Jay Cutler DVDs were my favourite watch. Also, I guess I always wanted arms like the opening scene in Commando, where Arnie is carrying the tree stump over his shoulder. Everyone knows that scene...(if they’re old enough). Why did you first start lifting weights? It was purely to assist my other sports. When I got older it was because I wanted to look good. It wasn’t as fashionable to go to the gym back then.

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When did you pick up your first copy of FLEX mag? Two weeks out from my first show in 2008. I bought a copy for some reading material to pass the time backstage and Ronnie Coleman was on the cover. I remember thinking, ‘that’s one big dude!’ How long did it take you to achieve your physique? Im still trying to achieve it, I don’t think we are ever happy. But I’ve been in gyms for about 20 years now. And I think swimming from such a young age and the other sports I’ve partaken in have helped me along the way. What do you believe is the best advice to give a newcomer to the sport? Good advice from the off is always a good place to start. You don’t want to waste years doing the wrong thing. Train, eat and rest correctly. It sounds cliche but it’s so true. Not everyone wants to be a full-time bodybuilder and that’s fair enough, but if you’re really serious then acknowledge that sacrificing parties and nights out are a must. Oh, and don’t blame politics when you don’t win but your mum says you looked the best! What is the best thing that you’ve learned from someone else along the way? I think along the way, I have learned what NOT to do. I think that has helped me progress far more than what TO do.

How do you structure your food, what’s your meal plan? Off-season I eat 6 meals a day. I used to get BIG in the off-season, but you can’t do that as you get older and keep bringing condition and gaining muscle. The height of my off-season diet may look like this: MEAL 1: 150g steak, 100g oats with almond milk MEAL 2: 180g chicken, 80g rice, green veg

allows me to eat more too- which is always a bonus! What do you think will happen regarding how the bodybuilding/physique competitive world will go? It’s a double-edged sword. Being a competitive bodybuilder, I think the increased number of shows and classes does dilute the talent pool. But at the end of the day, business is business and the finals of all the federations will still have the best athletes there. It also gives a lot of people a platform to get fit and healthy.

MEAL 3: (pre-workout)10 egg whites, 1 bagel with peanut butter INTRA-WORKOUT: 1 scoop Gaspari Nutrition Hyper Amino and 50g of carbs through HBCD (Glycofuse) MEAL 4: (post-workout)1.5 scoops Gaspari Nutrition Precision Whey, 100g cream of rice, 1tbsp of nut butter MEAL 5: 180g turkey mince, 350g white potato, green veg MEAL 6: 150g beef mince, mixed veg, 4 rice cakes with cheese spread What’s your training schedule? 6 days on, 1 day off. It’s been like that for a long time and personally it works for me. It NOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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From a gym owner’s perspective, apart from putting up with the odd first-time competitor ‘know it all’ it’s better for business the more mainstream it becomes. Independent fitness industry business owners need to embrace it in my opinion. Where do you see yourself career wise in 5 years time? I guess just making continual improvements. Bodybuilding isn’t my life but it’s the backbone of my business. I’d like to see my gym bigger, i’d like to still be competing because I want to, not because I feel I need to. To be at the top of my game is always my end game. So maybe the Olympia? How do you balance your work life with prep when you’re tired and drained in the last stages of your diet... Any advice for others? It’s very hard. If you’re really in condition and really low, it’s difficult for everyone. I try and do family days out so they don’t miss out. The wife can do all the running around with my son and at least I’m there to see everyone have a good time. Just remember

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that competing is your choice not theirs, which is easier said than done. If you feel you want achieve something then I think you should go for it. It’s not for everyone but if it’s what you’re passionate about, loved ones should understand and support it.... at least once! To be the best you will have to make sacrifices. Understand that people will not understand this or accept it. Try not to shut yourself away. Get friends and family involved where you can and they will come around. Who or what gives you the drive to be a competitive athlete? I think it’s been engrained in me since I was doing sit-ups in my front room… it’s that desire to be the best- something that all athletes should have in whatever sport. And ultimately now my life has changed I want to be a good role model for my children, to show them that hard work and discipline pays off. I want my wife to be proud of me and I want to set an example for my gym members that the gym is the right place to progress your physique.

Do you have any wise words that you may have been given or feel you can share with FLEX readers? Do not rush your progress! It’s a marathon not a sprint.


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NATURAL TRAINING GAINZ

Ez bar nice-curl 4 sets, 8-12 reps Superset with close grip lying dumbbell presses

MONDAY - BACK

Bicep curl 21’s Superset with over head rope extension

Lat pulldown (grip varies)

2 warm-up sets, 3 working sets, 10-15 reps

Iso seated row

4 sets, 8-12 reps

Low pulley row, wide grip

negatives, 4 sets, 12-15 reps

4 sets

Hanging leg raises

5 sets, 20 reps

Rope ab crunches

5 sets, 20-30 reps

SATURDAY - HAMS AND GLUTES

T-bar row

2 warm up sets, 3 working sets, 6-10 reps

Laying hamstring curls 2 warm-up sets, 4 working sets, 8-12 reps

Deadlifts

2 warm up sets, 3 working sets, 6-10 reps

Seated hamstring curls

4 sets, 12-15 reps

Kneeling iso hamstring curls

4 sets, 10-15 reps

Straight leg dumbbell deadlifts

4 sets, 15-20 reps

Iso low row

4 sets, 10-15 reps

TUESDAY - CHEST Dumbbell press (alternate flat

2 warm-up sets,

and incline chest weekly)

Slow negative wide step reverse lunges

4 sets, 10-12 reps on each leg

4 working sets, 8-12 reps Glute kickbacks

Iso incline press

4 sets, 12-15 reps

Flat iso press

4 sets, 12-15 reps

4 sets, 20 reps on each leg

SUNDAY - REST Cable crossover

negatives 4 sets, 12-15 reps (Superset with wide hand press ups)

Pec flies

4 sets, 12-15 reps

Wide dips

3 sets, 8-12 reps

WEDNESDAY - QUADS AND CALVES Leg extension

3 warm-up sets, 4 working sets 12-15 reps, last set, century drop set (10x10)

Superset with standing calf raises

4 sets 10-15 reps, negative pauses

Hack squat Leg press

4 sets, 8-12 reps 2 warm up sets, 4 working sets, 15-20 reps

Pendulum squat

4 sets, 8-12 reps

Superset seated calf raise

4 sets, 12-15 reps

Wide stance squats

4 sets, 15 reps

Superset with standing lunges or sissy squats

4 sets, 20 reps

THURSDAY - SHOULDERS Standing side dumbbell raises

3 warm-up sets, 3 working sets, 15-20 reps

Superset with bent over rear delt flies Dumbbell front raises (single arm) Superset with seated dumbbell shrugs Iso banded shoulder press

4 working sets, 10-15 reps 4 working sets, 20 reps

2 warm-up sets, 3 working sets, 8-12 reps Seated side partial raises: 4 sets, 15-20 reps (or to failure)

Rear delt flies

4 sets, 12-15 reps

FRIDAY - ARMS AND ABS (Superset Session) Single arm dumbbell curls Superset with rope pushdowns

4 sets 10 reps (each arm) 12-15 reps

Rope bicep hammer curls 4 sets 15-20 reps Superset with Hammer Strength tricep pushdown

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After all that, what do you do to relax? That’s all about family time, cinema, dog walks, that kind of thing, anything where the heart rate is stable. And now that my son is 5 we can actually do a lot more together which is just awesome! What are your personal hobbies? I’m into my bikes and have a few. I love to ride off-road and on-road. I also love snowboarding, anything to get the adrenaline going and make you feel a little uncomfortable. I enjoy living my life. Do you have any obsessions? Trainers, food and food challenges..... in no particular order! Instagram: @newibgym


DOWNLOAD THE DIGITAL EDITION OF FLEX UK


Front Pose The front pose allows for some freestyle movement. FEMI SAYS: “When I hit a front pose, I like to twist my hips slightly to the sides to create the illusion of a tiny waist. Don’t forget to hold the abs in!”

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POSE LIKE A PRO! PRO Whether you’re starting out in bodybuilding, or you want to hit certain angles to the best of your ability, posing practice is crucial and can mean the difference between taking top spot and being left in the wings. IFBB Physique Pro Femi Billyrose is renowned for his polished posing routine. He shared his tips exclusively with FLEX.

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BY DANNI LEVY

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PHOTOGRAPHS BY SIMON BARNES

Front Lat Spread The front lat spread is a standard pose in which the lats are spread to reveal that v-taper. FEMI SAYS: “I like to hold my abs in when performing this pose in order to make my waist to shoulder ratio more visible.”

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Side Triceps Side triceps is a pose in which one arm is held straight whilst flexing the triceps. FEMI SAYS: “Squeeze the obliques in to give your physique that extra aesthetic edge.”

Most Muscular A standard bodybuilding pose in which competitors show the judges how muscular, vascular and full their physique is. FEMI SAYS: “When performing the most muscular, I hold my abs in, breath out and then hold my breath to make me look more vascular. It’s just like doing a vacuum so practice these in the gym before show day!” 104

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Back Lat Spread A standard pose in which the lats are spread to reveal that V taper look. FEMI SAYS: “With this pose I lean back to reveal more of the back thickness and I also flex my hamstrings and calves to give that overall muscle flow.”

Back Double Biceps A pose in which both biceps and back are flexed with competitors backs turned towards the judges. FEMI SAYS: “In this pose I like to lean back to create a shadow effect on my back and I also squeeze my lower back to add more details to it.”

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The Adventures of

Huck Finn Barbell

Tom Finn’s crazy combo of powerlifting stunts and alcohol consumption earned him more than 100k Instagram followers. But that’s got nothing on his greatest feat: recovering from a gruesome pectoral tendon tear to routinely bench 226kg plus again. B Y S T E V E M A Z Z U C C H I // P H O T O G R A P H S B Y S A N D R O M I L L E R

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Finn performing his Insta-famous 226kg beer bong bench press. Do not try this at home!

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After a pec tear, Finn is back to benching 250 kg. At right: Finn deadlifts 265kg while his dad (left) sips on some suds.

Most larger-than-life legends don’t begin with the jettisoning of a coffee table. But that’s 108

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the first thing Tom Finn, aka Instagram’s huckfinnbarbell, mentions when relating how a rascally kid from tiny Sycamore, Illinois, evolved into a benchpressing, booze-chugging social media sensation. Are you sitting down? Because the tale of this modern folk hero’s rise, fall, and comeback is a doozy. These days, well over 100,000 followers gasp, laugh, and/or shake their heads when Finn downs his favoured Miller Lite or

Tito’s Vodka...or dons high heels or drops trou...while hefting ungodly amounts of weight, accompanied by melodic country music and punctuated with his trademark sign-off, “OK, bye.” But the seeds were sewn when the devoted husband and father was just a teen. As an eighth grader, the future all-state outside linebacker/ fullback already nicknamed “Huck” simply wanted to bulk up for sports. So his old man hatched a genius plan. “We moved the coffee table out of the living room and put a weight bench in its place,” Finn recalls. “And we’d come home from football practice, and my dad would be drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon and teaching me how to bench. He always said, ‘Build the chest, f*** the rest,’ and that’s how I got started. I’d eat my dinner off that bench. I just wanted to become strong as hell and look good naked!” By his junior year of high school, Finn could bench more than 181kg. As he grew into manhood and his numbers kept climbing, the legend spread. When it reached the ears of Ernie Lilliebridge Sr., the renowned powerlifting coach


did not hesitate. “He’s like, ‘That guy could be one of the best powerlifters in the world—tell him to come to my gym and train with us,’ ” Finn says. “So I went over there, and three months later I totalled 920kg at 100kg, one of the best totals of all time.” Sponsors came calling. The first, Clique Nutrition, encouraged him to join Instagram and promote the brand. In the summer of 2014, he did—and spent more than a year building a small following. Then, a breakthrough. “I’m a prison guard, so I’m in a tower one night on third shift, bored as hell,” he remembers. “And

I’m like, ‘Well, what am I good at? Bench pressing and drinking beer. Let’s put it together—I’ll bench 226 kg, and, at the same time, I’ll do a beer bong.’ So I did, and it just f***ing took off from there.” Finn realised he’d struck a nerve. What followed was a whirlwind of increasingly insane stunts. Such as bench pressing a goat 108 times to break the Cubs’ World Series curse, onearm deadlifting 226kg while crushing a brewski, and bench pressing 226kg on fire in the back of a moving pickup truck. There was also that time Finn fell while deadlifting 226kg on a StairMaster and had to have his

finger sewn back together, but that boo-boo pales next to the fingertip he lost to a dumbbell in college, which birthed a one-ofa-kind tradition. “All my old trophies are at my dad’s house on a mantel,” he says. “There’s a shot glass up there with my pinkie tip, all black and shrivelled up. Every Thanksgiving we take a shot of Wild Turkey out of it.” Finn says he rarely rehearses his antics, reasoning that “even if I screw up, it’s gonna be a good video,” and his goofiest ones now regularly garner six-figure view counts. But ironically enough, the lift that nearly ended his career wasn’t goofy at all. Two years ago, while filming at Mark Bell’s Super Training Gym in Sacramento, California, Finn attempted to benchNOVEMBER 2018 | FLEX

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press 258kg. “I came out of the hole and felt like I’d been hit by lightning,” he recalls. “I knew I was f***ed.” He’d torn his pec tendon clean off the bone, leaving his right arm limp. After an MRI confirmed the damage, a surgeon painstakingly reattached it. But that procedure was only the beginning of the journey back, one that commenced with what Finn describes as “probably the most depressing time ever.” Confined to his home for a week, Finn sat on the couch, drinking vodka, “because I didn’t wanna drink beer to get fat,” and listened to country music until he could get back into the gym. Even though he could do only lower-body work—and even though his wife, Karen, had to do “everything” for three months—Finn found solace in strength training and healing in the PRP (platelet-rich plasma) shots he drove six hours down to Kentucky each month to get. The procedure involves drawing a patient’s own blood, spinning it around in a centrifuge to separate the plasma, then injecting it into the injured area to promote healing. One thing he never lacked, though, was his trademark fire and lust for life. “Mark said no one could come back from an injury that affects the pec tendon and lift 226kg again,” Finn says. “And that just motivated me. I’m like, you know, ‘Fuck you. I will prove him wrong. I’m Tom Finn and you’re not’—that’s pretty much my motto.” Little by little, Finn rehabbed, and he began to bench-press again, alongside the three other compound movements—squat, deadlift, and overhead press— that make up 80% of his regular workouts. (See sidebar.) And just like when he was a teenager, the numbers climbed. Now he’s back to a 249kg bench press, 110

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and his Instagram page is as wild and boisterous as ever. The maniac is back. And still, we’re left with a couple of questions. First, on a scale of one to André the Giant, what’s his actual booze consumption like? Finn eats like a bodybuilder 85% of the time, but come the weekend, “I’ve drunk a case of beer so many times I couldn’t count,” he says. “I’ve brought my own cooler to many parties.” Second, now that he’s quieted the haters by bouncing back from an injury many believed to be insurmountable, what are his

major ambitions? “My goal has always been to bench 272kg at 100kg,” he says. “And my other goal is to drink 24 beers before noon. My dad owns that record, and you can’t start till, like, 8:30 in the morning— you’ve got a small window. My friends have tried it and all failed. I have yet to try it, but I will one day, and I’m gonna beat it.”


Build the Chest, F*** the Rest

Finn relaxing on his tractor at his home in Big Rock, IL.

Finn lives up to that halfjoking motto with intense upper-body workouts like this one once a week. Keep the weight between 85 and 90%.

FLAT BENCH: 5 sets of 3 reps

Need a Lift, Bro?

Make it happen with Finn’s tried-and-true, if sometimes unconventional, powerlifting pointers.

1

PULL FOR POWER

“Squeeze the bar really hard in your hands when bench pressing, and try to pull that bar apart,” Finn says. “That’s gonna activate your back more. You wanna pinch those shoulder blades back, grab that bar, and bend it. Look at your hands now and where your shoulders are set—your arm length is probably two inches lower for your bench lockout than it would be if your back was flat. That’s a huge difference; an inch on your lockout could cost you 20 pounds.”

2

TOILET TRAINING

“When you squat or deadlift, take in that big air [deep breath], and then push against that belt you’re wearing before you pick up the weight,” Finn says. “Push like you’re gonna take a f***, like you’re pushing out, hhrrrnnnnnnnggggg. That’s gonna give you more leverage and a little pop out of the hole when you lift.”

3

TUNE IN “I get fired up by listening to country music. Most people listen to rock or rap or hip-hop or heavy metal. I’m listening to, like, old Conway Twitty. The first time I ever benched 226kg, I was listening to ‘Country Boys Can Survive’ by Hank Williams Jr.” Our takeaway? Find the prelift music that gets you pumped and crank it.

4

GO IN HEADFIRST

“When I bench, especially when I max, I always try to line my forehead up with that bar. Then I kinda touch it with my head, and then sometimes I just go so nuts, I head-butt that bar as hard as I can, cut myself open, and start bleeding everywhere. I just kinda black out, it clears my head, and I’m good to go. And then my wife’s always upset when I come home and I’ve got a big bump on my head. She’ll be like, ‘Ah, you hit your head on the bar again, you idiot!’ ”

Finn says: “I love dropsets at the end of my flat bench work: 142kg for 25 to 30 reps and/or 102kg for 50 to 60 reps, one or two times a month. This helps for speed off the chest. I rest three to five minutes between all top sets for flat bench and one to two minutes with all other lifts.”

CLOSE-GRIP BENCH: 3–5 sets of 10–20 reps Finn says: “My thumbs are just touching the smooth part of the bar.”

INCLINE BENCH: 3–5 sets of 10–20 reps Finn says: “I will occasionally throw a beer bong in for one set for fun and hydration. Once or twice a month, I will switch from barbell to dumbbells for variety.”

DIP: 3–5 sets of 10–20 reps Finn says: “Sometimes I’ll spend an hour just doing dips. Not counting reps or sets.”

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