"Now, he’s got potential." How often have we heard that? In bodybuilding, someone who has potential [to go somewhere in the sport] must possess above-average genetics, mental drive and extreme discipline. Every once in a while, a few hidden gems take advantage of the above formula, and evolve into a champion athlete.
When I first competed against Tommie Robertson 10 years ago, not only did I think potential, I thought he could be a serious winner in a very short period of time.
Most people who don’t know Tommie would never guess what a great bodybuilder he is until he strips down.
This is because he does not walk around in clothes that are two sizes too small!
Previous articles about Tommie:
| Tommie’s Back and Hamstring Workout |
| High protein low carb diet |
Fast forward to 2002. My premonition was true. Not only has the 29-year old become a great bodybuilder, he is now a Drug Free Professional!
As BodyMuscle goes to press, Tommie’s next show will be Florida (June). In preparing for this show, I was able to dig a little deeper in to Tommie’s training and nutrition plans. The following summarizes that discussion:
- Tommie’s training is body instinctive. In other words, he trains based on his perception of each body parts recovery. Especially preparing for a show, it is vital to critique your physique and to bring up weak areas while maintaining strengths.
- In the off-season, Tommie trains 5 days/week, hitting each body part twice/week. In pre-contest mode, he adds a sixth day, and performs aerobic training 3-5 days/week.
- Tommie has a ‘quiet’ personality. He does not brag, but physique-wise, I can tell you he is one of the thickest guys around! He is very balanced top to bottom and front to back, with an especially good back and freaky hamstring development. In the future, he admits that he wants to be even ‘crisper’ while still maintaining his size.
- Tommie uses a variety of techniques and angles in his weight-training regimen, as a result, he uses several different exercises. Variables that are manipulated include pre-exhaustion, iso-tension between sets, change in rep speed, repetition number, and rest between sets.
- Sample workout for chest:
Hammer Strength Incline
180 x 10, 270 x 10, 360 x 5 (plus three forced reps)
Incline Barbell Press
135 x 12, 205 x 10, 275 x 6, 305 x 2 (plus 2 forced reps)
80 x 10, 100 x 10, 120 x 8
85 x 3 x 10
70 x 15, 90 x 12, 110 x 10, 130 x 10
- Tommie started working with Beverly in 1995 in preparing for the Ohio Valley and NPC South District (in which he won the overall). He is impressed with the quality.
- He cites the following reasons why Beverly has remained his company of choice:
- Quality of products; commitment to all levels of competitors; the personal attention they provide to every customer; they are brutally honest on the assessment of your physique. We both also agreed that they are just great people to work with
- Tommie’s supplements change from week to week based on how he looks, but staple items include Mass, Super Pak, Muscle Provider and UMP
- While Tommie doesn’t keep track of his calories per se, in the off-season he consumes between 40-50% carbohydrate, 30% protein and the rest is fat. In his pre-contest dieting, he adjusts calories and macronutrients weekly, although his protein never drops below 2 grams/pound (roughly 360-400 grams/day).
He follows a basic training and nutritional routine. He works 8-10 hours/day at a blue-collar job, is a single guy who likes to have a social life, and wears clothes that actually aren’t two sizes too small.His goals are modest, yet realistic: "My short term goal is to place in every show I do, while my long term goal is to compete until it is no longer any fun."It is obvious that his down-to-earth approach has paid dividends. For those of you trying to establish your own bodybuilding goals, Tommie offers four important tips that worked for him:
- Be patient and persevere!
“Gains in muscle and strength do not happen overnight. My first show I weighed 138, and I hope to compete at 180 this year.›
- Keep your ego in check!
“Never train with sloppy form. Use a weight you can handle. Avoid injuries to ensure better gains.”
- Seek out help from others.
"Never be afraid to learn new exercises, techniques, etc. Get objective critiques on your physique and focus on things you may have overlooked." (Tommie credits Dalon Myricks and Tricky Jackson for helping him).
- Plan ahead!
“If you are doing a show, don’t wait until the last minute. Plan to plan. The further out you start with diet, posing, and tanning, the easier it will be. Start practicing your posing early in the pre-contest mode.” It has been inspiring to see the changes Tommie has made.
1992 Mr. Miami 1st Bantam
1992 Northern Kentucky 3rd Lightweight Teen
1992 Ohio Valley 4th lightweight
1993 NPC Mr. Miami 1st lightweight
1993 NPC Mr. Cincinnati 1st lightweight
1993 NPC Metro 2nd lightweight
1994 NPC Ohio South District 2nd lightweight
At this point Tommie started with Beverly
1995 NPC Ohio Valley 1st lightweight
1995 NPC Ohio South District 1st lightweight OVERALL
1995 NPC Natural Ohio 1st lightweight OVERALL
1996 NPC Battle of Champions 1st lightweight
1996 NPC Kentucky Derby Extravaganza 1st lightweight
1996 NPC Team Universe 7th lightweight
1997 NPC Indianapolis 1st middleweight
1997 NPC Junior Nationals 3rd lightweight
1998 NPC Bluegrass 1st middleweight OVERALL
1998 NPC Ohio 1st Middleweight
1998 IFBB North America 4th Welterweight
1999 NPC Team Universe 6th middleweight
1999 IFBB North America 1st Welterweight
2000 Drug Free PRO GALAXY 1st
2000 Drug Free PRO UNIVERSE 4TH
2001 Drug Free Heart of America 2nd
2001 Drug Free PRO GALAXY 2ND
2001 Drug Free MAXIMUM PRO INVITATIONAL 1ST
2001 Drug Free PRO OLYMPUS 1ST
|Date:||Bodyweight||% Body fat||Pounds Lean Mass|
Tommie’s nutritional approach to consistent improvement is based on the common sense edict: don’t fix what isn’t broken and if progress stops make a change.
His approach this year to get things jump-started (note: he’s gained more lean mass over the past 7 months than the previous two years) is to alternate gaining and hardening phases during his in-season diet. Tommie follows the cutting phase diet for two weeks, then increases calories and incorporates a post training recovery drink, Mass Maker, the third week.
- Here is what it looks like:
- CUTTING: 1st Two weeks
- Meal #1
- 10 oz. very lean beef (or 6 oz chicken), 6 egg whites,
- 1 cup omelet vegetables 1/2 cup oatmeal before cooking, 2 Flax Oil Capsules
- Meal #2
- Protein Drink: 2 scoops Muscle Provider, 1 scoop 100% Egg, 16-oz water
- Meal #3
- 10 oz. chicken ½ cup oatmeal (or 6 oz sweet potato before cooking).
- 2 Flax Oil Capsules
- Meal #4
- Protein Drink: 2 Scoops Muscle Provider, 1 scoop 100% Egg, and 16-oz water
- Meal #5
- 10 oz. 96% Lean Beef, Fish, Turkey, Chicken Breast
- 2 cups vegetables
- 2 Flax Oil Capsules
- Meal #6
- 12 oz. fish (look for fat grams = 1 – 3 per 4 oz serving)
- (or 6 oz chicken), 6 egg whites, 1 cup omelet vegetables
- 2 cups spinach or salad
Monday and Thursday as a 7th meal:
1.5 cups oatmeal (precooked) or cooked rice, 10 oz. sweet potato, 6 oz. banana, 1 cup vegetables, 1 Tbsp butter at the end of the day - no supplements with this meal
GAINING: 3 rd Week
Meal #1 2 whole eggs + 4 egg whites 8 oz. 93% lean beef or other meat 3/4 cup oatmeal before cooking Meal #2 3 Scoops Ultra Size, 1 scoop 100% Egg, 18 oz water (Optional: 4 frozen strawberries or 1⁄2 banana) 2 cans tuna or 6 oz other meat + 1 piece fruit (not banana) Meal #3 10 oz. chicken (before cooking) or other meat 8 oz. sweet potato or 1 cup rice 2 cups vegetables Meal #4 3 Scoops Ultra Size, 1 scoop 100% Egg, 18 oz water (Optional: 4 frozen strawberries or ½ banana) or 2 cans tuna or 6 oz other meat + 1 piece fruit (not banana) Meal #5 10 oz. sirloin steak (lean) or other meat 6 oz. sweet potato or small baked potato 2 cups vegetables Meal #6 10 oz. steak or chicken (before cooking), 2 cups vegetables
On workout days – (as a 7th meal)
5 scoops Mass Maker in 14–oz. water or 10 egg whites + 1–½ cups oatmeal2 Antioxidants