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We have talked with 206 athletes who mention bodybuilding.

Dave Cunningham
Dave Cunningham (male, 33)
How I Maintain an Impressive Fitness Model Physique after 17 Years of Training
I have been interested in bodybuilding since my early teens and although I massively admire the physiques that they built, that’s not the direction I wanted to take my physique.
Daz Hallett
Daz Hallett (male, 49)
How I Won Mr. Universe, Got Surgery and Then Won Mr. Universe Again
Outside bodybuilding my other hobbies beside my family is most outdoor sports golf, riding my bike playing pickle ball with the other guys in my community. They are individual sports like bodybuilding, which means it’s all down to me to succeed to put the dedication and work in.
Kevin Weiss
Kevin Weiss (male, 48)
How I Have Competed in Both Bodybuilding and Powerlifting for 20+ Years
I competed in bodybuilding from the ages of 15 and 39 and powerlifting from 19 to present. I won the drug tested nationals in bodybuilding in 2003 and the world powerlifting championships in 2014. My best lifts in competition are 240kg squat, 177.5kg bench press, 272.5 deadlift as a 93kg M1 lifter. I currently hold the national bench press record of 165.5 in the 83kg M1.
Stu Yellin
Stu Yellin (male, 46)
How I Went from Competitive Bodybuilding to Being an Experienced Coach
When I was competing, I would usually go about 25 lbs over my stage weight and still feel comfortable. It was soft enough that my strength was good, recovery good, able to cheat a little in terms of not adhering to a strict plan every day, but still lean enough that my insulin sensitivity was good and I still looked every bit the bodybuilder if I took my shirt off.
Ivan Blazquez
Ivan Blazquez (male, 40)
I'm a Vegan Bodybuilder and Triathlete. This Is How I Compete in Both Sports at the Same Time
My name is Ivan Blazquez and I’m 40. I live in New Orleans, Louisiana. Regarding major accomplishments this has been a banner year. I’ve currently competed in 49 bodybuilding shows dating back to 2005.
Caleb Blanchard
Caleb Blanchard (male, 32)
How I Went from Being Undersized to IFBB Pro Bodybuilder, Online Coach and Personal Trainer
Being athletic but undersized was what initiated my weight lifting/bodybuilding career. I played roller hockey as a teen and tried out for football once but needed more strength and mass to play with the same degree of physicality as the other elite players. Once achieving that, I began to focus more on the weight room and a long term goal of being an Olympian.
Shelli Beecher-Seitzler
Shelli Beecher-Seitzler (female, 46)
How I Earned My WNBF Fit Body and Masters Figure Pro Cards in Less than Half a Year
Additionally, I work with pro bodybuilder and promoter, John Nickerson, to learn the exact poses necessary for INBF competitions.
Tyrone Bell
Tyrone Bell (male, 38)
How I Went from Stuntman to Full-Time Bodybuilder and WBFF Fitness Model Pro
That opened doors for me to train other celebrities on other big budget film and TV shows. It also opened the doors to work with Bodybuilding.com, appear and contribute in Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, Muscle & Fitness and other major main stream health and fitness publications.
Nigel St Lewis
Nigel St Lewis (male, 39)
How I Don't Make Excuses and Compete on the Highest Level as a Natural Bodybuilder
Admittedly, I was incredibly naive but bodybuilding excited me and training was never a chore. Find something you love doing, you’ll never work a day in your life, unfortunately despite my success as a natural bodybuilder, I do have a full time job as a business owner, but you get the point.
Nick Staro
Nick Staro (male, 26)
How I Came Back Strong after a Motorcycle Accident and Placed 2nd in Mr. Hellas
I love bodybuilding and everything about it: Diet, training, coaching, etc. When I have any free time I produce music. 
Eli Bernard
Eli Bernard (male, 25)
How I Combine Fitness and Bodybuilding with Nursing and Modeling
When it comes to what I like most about fitness and bodybuilding is the fact of how much work you can put into it. It teaches you to be patient, and work hard from a physical and mental standpoint. A sculpted body cannot be bought, which is another aspect that makes it more meaningful.
Helge Nilsen
Helge Nilsen (male, 20)
How I Went from Gamer to Aspiring Bodybuilder and Got Really Fit in Just 2 Years
Hello! My name is Helge Nilsen. I am a 20-year-old Norwegian aspiring bodybuilder and I have been working out since January this year.
Antti Plaami
Antti Plaami (male, 35)
How I became a Natural Vegan Powerlifting Ultra-Endurance Athlete and Coach
Some what of a fascination to the image of the golden years ”Silver-era” bodybuilding before steroids and upgrading that including endurance and all around strength.
Rishi Kunal Joshi
Rishi Kunal Joshi (male, 29)
I'm a Supercomputing Engineer, Vegan Powerlifter, Bodybuilder and Fitness Coach. This Is How I Work, Train and Eat
For bodybuilding competitions, I take somewhat of an opposite approach and may take certain movements out as my body fat drops. This isn’t to “bring out the cuts” or some other bro reason, it’s a leverage issue – it gets hard to squat properly when the belt breaks your lower ribs!
Alex Buffone
Alex Buffone (male, 24)
How I Train, Eat and Prepare to Be the First Male Vegan Athlete on the Mr. Olympia Stage
My love for fitness and bodybuilding started when I was 13 or 14 on my way to Italy. I saw an issue of Muscular Development in a magazine stand, with the famous quad stomp picture of Jay Cutler and thought to myself: “Wow. I want to look like that.”
Brian Dobson
Brian Dobson (male, 62)
How I Train Hard, Set Lifting Records and Keep My Abs at 62
Dealing with this knee has been a challenge for sure, if I could get my legs back decent I would consider bodybuilding again.
Chad Havunen
Chad Havunen (male, 40)
How I'm Gonna Comeback to Pro Bodybuilding, Mr. Olympia and Battle of the Godz after a 5 Years Hiatus
I am a professional bodybuilder and have competed in 27 bodybuilding contests, I have 3 different pro cards with natural federations.
Ingrid S. Clay
Ingrid S. Clay (female, 39)
I'm a Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer, and Plant-Based Chef. This is How Fitness Has Become My Meditation
I am a group fitness instructor, personal trainer, and plant-based chef. In addition, I am a bodybuilder and aspiring triathlete. I’ve been training for over ten years.
Paulo Cavalcante Muzy
Paulo Cavalcante Muzy (male, 40)
I'm a Busy Medical Doctor and Bodybuilder. This Is How I Train, Eat and Recover
Whether a patient is a housewife or a bodybuilder, we offer solutions that can be done specifically for their cases with the purpose to give each one the chance to become the best version of themselves.
Eva Tretjakova
Eva Tretjakova (female, 42)
How I Juggle Being Mom, Wife, Fitness Instructor and Bodybuilding Champion
Since May 2018, I have competed in five federations and nine shows: Nifma, PCA, RIBBF, NABBA/WFF, PURE ELITE. I placed four times in first places, two second places and one third place in bikini masters +35, and obtained my Pro Cards, with the NABBA/WFF and PURE ELITE.
Zack Belknap
Zack Belknap (male, 27)
I'm a Vegan Bodybuilder. This is How I Build Muscle with Plant-Based Diet
I trained for fun until I was about 22 years old and then I really began training with the intent of becoming a bodybuilder. I first started competing in bodybuilding in 2017 and by 2018 I had earned my professional status with the WNBF, and in April 2019 I won my pro debut.
Tshireletso Madibo
Tshireletso Madibo (male, 30)
How I Made the Choice to Keep Training Even When Things Get Difficult
When I was 17, I fell in love with fitness and bodybuilding so that’s 13 years of consistency and hardships. I totally fell in love with the physique. Arnold Schwarzenegger was the inspiration. I just loved how big and ripped he was.
Rishiraj Kapur
Rishiraj Kapur (male, 40)
How I Went from Being Overweight to Living the Bodybuilding Lifestyle and Becoming a Fit Dad
Bodybuilding/Training is not just limited to the gym, it’s a lifestyle for me. The sport has helped me to cultivate a better environment not just for myself but for everyone attached to me. Weight training gave me purpose in life and this passion of mine distinguishes me from the crowd.
Jae Griggs
Jae Griggs (male, 37)
At 237 Lbs, I'm One of the Biggest Vegan Bodybuilders. This Is How I Eat, Train and Get Big
Lifting was always a part of the sports I was involved in — football, track, and even boxing. But it wasn’t until about five years ago when I made choice to start competing in bodybuilding. I fell in love with the challenge of pushing my body and doing something that I only dreamed of as a kid.
Beth Castell
Beth Castell (female, 31)
How I Compete in Bodybuilding to Prove You Can Build Muscle on a Vegan Diet
I have competed in five bodybuilding competitions in the last two years and was fortunate enough to take away a stack of hardware.
Samantha Shorkey
Samantha Shorkey (female, 37)
I'm the Host of Jacked on a Beanstalk. This Is How I Became the First-ever Vegan WNBF Bikini Pro
My biggest “client success story” was a meat eater turned vegan who won Bodybuilding.com’s $200,000 12-Week Transformation Challenge, beating out 345,000 contestants worldwide. Read the full story on how we did it here.
SuzAnne Llano
SuzAnne Llano (female, 49)
How I Started Competitive Bodybuilding at 40 and Fell in Love with the Discipline and Commitment
I have a partner who is super health conscious, vegan, bodybuilder, tennis player, skier, etc., you must have a supportive mate who understands your quest for health and wellness and be on the same playing field or it will never work.
Nick Wright
Nick Wright (male, 28)
How I Moved on from Bodybuilding and Got into Serious Powerlifting
I went on to become the FIRST drug-tested teen bodybuilder on the COVER of a fitness magazine in 2010 at 19! I even had Converse recognize me and send their support with free shoes for a long while.
Taylor Patterson
Taylor Patterson (male, 34)
How a Back Injury Forced Me to Focus on Mobility and Flexibility in the Gym
I also welcome everyone to join the Powerplantbody Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness Facebook group. It’s full of other people just like you looking to achieve their goals on a vegan diet.
Kristyn Mahoney
Kristyn Mahoney (female, 25)
How I Went Vegan, Replaced 50 Lbs of Fat with Muscle and Became a Pro Bodybuilder
I had a few amazing coaches between 2015 when I started my journey, until about 2018 when I finally decided to get serious. I signed up with a competition coach and began prepping for my first bodybuilding show.
Eric Leto
Eric Leto (male, 33)
How I Became a Vegan WBFF Pro Fitness Model and European Vice Champion
My passion was always Fitness/Bodybuilding since age 19 after playing eight years of basketball. I had my first competition then where I got first in Junior’s National Bodybuilding. Since then I haven’t stopped training and competing.
Ric Drasin
Ric Drasin (male, 75)
How I Stay Strong and Keep Training at 75 (after 59 Years of Training)
Besides bodybuilding, I have been doing pro wrestling. I did wrestling along with bodybuilding from 1965 to 2001. Had to retire after I tore both quads in 2001.
Fábio Veras
Fábio Veras (male, 42)
This is How I Stay Fit and Motivated After 25 Years of Competitive Bodybuilding
I started as a competition bodybuilder and as a personal trainer and now I’m the CEO of Center of Physical Excellence where I manage a team of professionals including medical doctors, nutritionists, physiotherapists and personal trainers.
Lars Besand
Lars Besand (male, 43)
How I Trained to Become the Strongest Man in Denmark at 105 Kg
I think that my major accomplishment in this sport of bodybuilding is getting up everyday and never giving up, and making sure that all my students keep developing into the happiest Vikings in the world. Besides that – I’ve won Denmark’s strongest man -105 kg and Masters, Jutlands.
Amine Aminov
Amine Aminov (male, 29)
How I Finally Started Bodybuilding after Quitting 3 Times
My first bodybuilding training was in 2007, when I was looking to gain more weight because I was skinny. My first experience was not too long (just for three months and then I left) and I returned in summer 2008 and I left again.
Dani Taylor
Dani Taylor (female, 33)
How I Lost 90 lbs in 18 Months by Going Vegan and Lifting Weights
I am a competitive natural bodybuilder in the figure category, so my training changes whether I am in preparation for a competition or if I am in the off-season.
Ben Palocko
Ben Palocko (male, 31)
How I Gained 45 Lbs, Became a Fitness Model and Promix Nutrition Ambassador
Seeing the improvements first hand and especially hearing compliments from family and friends just kept me pushing harder and wanting more. Hockey led me to bodybuilding, and although it will always hold a place in my heart, bodybuilding is my new passion and something I will do for the rest of my life.
Carla Hampshire
Carla Hampshire (female, 58)
I'm 58, Pro Bodybuilder, Author, and Grandmother. This is How I Stay Fit
I had a voracious appetite for everything related to bodybuilding and nutrition. I learned and progressed quickly. My trainer mentioned to me one day that if I continued training this way, that he could see me competing as a bodybuilder in a couple of years. He had just lit a fire inside of me. Could I? Should I?
Alex Carneiro
Alex Carneiro (male, 31)
How My Motivation Has Changed the Way I Train, Eat and Recover
3rd IFBB Pro Physique in the History of the Division 1st Overall CA and CO Physique Champion in History 1st Latin IFBB Pro Physique Top 10 Mr Olympia Physique Finisher 55+ International Fitness Ads 5 International Fitness Covers I have been training for 13 years now and the reason I started was because I was passionate about the world of bodybuilding.
Victor Egonu
Victor Egonu (male, 30)
How I'm Planning to Win the Drug-free Bodybuilding World Championship next Season
Also, competing as a drug-free pro bodybuilder having to train the way I do, as great as it is, it takes a serious toll. My CNS (central nervous system), joints and overall energy takes hits from the level of training I have to do to reach my goals.
Rick Ryan
Rick Ryan (male, 62)
I'm 62. This Is How I Train, Eat and Recover for a Contest Body Fat Percentage of 4.9%
So I guess running and wanting to improve my body was what drove me to bodybuilding later in life – it is never to late to start. In my younger years I water skied.
Anthony Catanzaro
Anthony Catanzaro (male, 48)
I'm the Superman of Fitness. This Is How I Keep Training after Getting Parkinson's Disease
I have won numerous fitness and bodybuilding championships, but my biggest challenge has been battling Parkinson’s disease for the last 7 years. I was diagnosed in 2015, and since then my life has changed dramatically.
Giacomo Marchese
Giacomo Marchese (male, 25)
I Co-founded Vegan Proteins and Plant Built. This Is How I Train, Eat and Recover
Not only is veganism not hurting my gains, I feel that it only serves to bolster performance and recovery. A vegan bodybuilder tends to gravitate to more nutritionally dense foods which is an obvious win for both their health and their athletic endeavors.
Francesco Grezza
Francesco Grezza (male, 25)
How I Trained, Lost 45 Kg and Got Ready to Open My Own Gym
Bodybuilding has become a fundamental part of my life, it has led me to improve not only physically but also mentally, it has shaped my character through pain and suffering.
Michael Habibi
Michael Habibi (male, 27)
How I Went from Skinny Fat to Vegan Personal Trainer and Fitness Coach
For an experience bodybuilder make sure you plan and track your work outs, increase your volume over time. Stay away from drop sets, and incline sets.
Shane (male, 35)
How I Prepare for the Classic Physique Division after 20 Years of Training
The best thing about bodybuilding to me is how I can sculpt my body and the discipline it take to reach certain goals!
Klaudijus Simutis
Klaudijus Simutis (male, 19)
How I Got a Very Aesthetic Physique (It All Started with Dragon Ball Z)
I would recommend that the main source any new bodybuilder should use is YouTube as it is where I got a lot of information from when I was starting out.
Faisal Ali
Faisal Ali (male, 20)
How I Lost 30 Kg and Got Lean by Dieting and Doing Smart Gym Workouts
I keep myself motivated by watching bodybuilding videos and looking at my pictures when I was so heavy (126 kg). I think about how I managed to lose all that weight.
Marko Drobac
Marko Drobac (male, 18)
How I Gained 25 Kg of Muscle Mass by Training 5 Days a Week
I wish I had a bodybuilding/fitness company, maybe some gym stuff, supplements or even my own sweatshirt and shirt company.
Dennis Okello Mbira
Dennis Okello Mbira (male, 25)
How I Gained over 15 Kg of Lean Muscle Mass by Going to the Gym
However, we hope that within 5 years we will be in a position to compete in the local bodybuilding contests. To achieve this, we always try to beat our own personal records and set new ones.
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Hacks and Routines

The most mentioned hacks and routines amongst the bodybuilders we have talked with.

Rest Days
Foam Rolling
Leg Day
Fasted Cardio

Diets and Diet Hacks

The most mentioned diets and diet hacks. Some are negative. For example alcohol mentions for most athletes mean mentioning no/very little alcohol 👍

Cheat Days
Ice Cream
Fast Food
Gluten Free


The most mentioned supplements amongst the bodybuilders.

Whey Protein
Plant Protein
Fish Oil
Beta Alanine
Protein Bars
Energy Drinks
Casein Protein

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