My diet consists of whole low-fat proteins, fresh and frozen vegetables, whole grains and legumes (beans). consume over 120 grams of protein per day which is derived from chicken breast, ground turkey, egg whites, whey protein, tuna, and lean red meat. I try to eat a minimum of 1/2 Ib. (sometimes 1lb.) of vegetables, and grains such as oatmeal, brown rice, and legumes like beans and lentils. My diet consists of 2,000-4,000 calories a day, depending on whether it is the off-season or pre-contest time. You can see my personal diet cookbook here on the web at my Bits & Bytes Cafe.

The key to being in shape is to use food as fuel, not as pleasure although there are hundreds of ways to prepare wholesome food to taste good without using excess fats and sugars. My meals are weighed, counted and planned and timed at contest time. I eat every 2 - 3 hours because eating actually speeds up your metabolic rate and causes your body to burn it (fuel) in regulation and as needed. Excess fats, sugars and empty calories (that have no minerals or vitamins) end up stored as fat. But lean wholesome foods get used by the body much like gas for your car. That's why starvation diets don't work. If you starve your body of its fuel, it stops working properly and ends up hoarding its fat stores for fuel and not burning it. Everything from your brain to your blood needs the vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, proteins and even the fats that are found in good nutritious foods. The next time you go to eat a candy bar read the label to see exactly how much you are actually "feeding" your body. Then read what a serving of oatmeal will do for you. And you won't experience a sugar crash of energy or have added cellulite to the back of your thighs.



* It Works! Don't Go Without!



I try to train something everyday, whether it is a body part or just doing cardio. My training schedule is never the same. It can go from 5 on 2 off to 2 on 1 off, 2 on 1 off. Rest is just as important as the training I am realizing - without proper recuperation you can't get anywhere. I never train the same either, except I always use one basic power movement, and 2 isolation movements in my program. The rep range is usually 3 - 20 reps per set, trying to attack both slow and fast twitch muscle fibers. The main key to all training is "getting to the muscle". I concentrate on form and muscle contraction. I lift as heavy as possible; effectively. I'm a believer in stretching and posing between sets, it keeps the muscles growing, creates muscle separation and keeps me from getting blocky (keeps my physique feminine and stream-lined).

I have added slow, continuous tension reps and negatives to my workout. It has helped me put on 5 extra pounds of lean tissue during this off-season and increase my weights. Using these slow concentrated reps really puts the emphasis on the muscles being worked. It forces you to use your strength and not momentum. I think it is a great program, especially for the natural bodybuilder.

At 43 I am happy to say that my strength has actually increased over time. I have never been strong, only strong-minded, and strong-willed. It takes time to build muscle maturity, I never understood that as a beginner but now I know what muscle maturity is. One of the most positive aspects of muscle mass is the ability to eat constantly and stay at 15% bodyfat year round.




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