The Peaking Phase

By: By Jeff Williamson
Magazine 12 #1

I’m fresh off an overall bodybuilding victory at the Motown Classic in Flint Michigan and I’m still pumped and ready for more! Today I start my final Phase (III) prep for my main show of the year, the MidWest States in Chicago November 18th I plan on being in the best condition of my life when I step on stage in Chicago. Dieting, food preparation, eating, training, aerobics, and posing all have to be planned and fit into the daily schedule... believe me this stuff is a 24 hour 7 day a week job!

Jeff one arm bicep curl
Before I give you the details of my Phase (III) training, I thought I might take you through a typical day in the life and times of a pro bodybuilder who has a family and full time job. Training for a bodybuilding competition while managing the family obligations and job responsibilities can be tricky but with a little planning, it can be done.

Let’s get right to it–upon dragging myself out of bed, I stumble to the kitchen to the coffee pot where I get my first cup of coffee and take a handful of Muscle Synergy and some Muscle Mass (BCAA’s). I then take my coffee and hit the treadmill for about 45 minutes of low intensity aerobics. By this time my two boys are waking up and getting hungry their Mom is usually at work by this time so it’s up to dear old Dad to get some grub in the little rug rats. Anyway, once I’m off the treadmill I take the food orders and whip up something for the little dudes. After they’re fed, I fill my tank with the first meal of the day.

My first meal consists of 6 egg whites, 6 ounces lean protein and a grapefruit. Once we’re all finished eating, I drop the boys off at school and head to my regular 9 to 5 job. Upon arriving at work I get a second cup of coffee and settle in for the day (check e–mails, prioritize work stuff, etc’).

I always take my 2nd (mid morning) and 4th (mid afternoon) meals to work with me. These two meals consist of an MRP (meal replacement powder) called Ultra Size. I have the luxury of living about 5 minutes from work so I always go home around noon where I train for about 20 to 30 minutes which is quickly followed by meal number 3 (8 ounces of chicken and 2 cups broccoli).

Around 5:00 I leave work and go straight home where I prime my body for my main workout of the day. I take another handful of muscle synergy, put some Glutamine Select in a bottle and head outside to my garage where I train. I normally train for about 1.5 hours in which I always pose between sets. People seem to freak out when I tell them I train at home, but it’s all a matter of staying motivated, knowing how to train, and having passion for something you love.

As soon as I am finished training, it’s time for my 5th meal of the day which consists of 8 ounces of a lean protein source and 2 cups of low carb vegetables. By this time the family has already eaten and it’s time to sit down with the boys to help them with their homework. Once homework is done, it’s time to relax... either play with the kids, read, or watch some TV. I eat my final meal of the day (2 scoops of Ultra Size) around 9:00. Come 11:00 I am ready to hit the sack! I need my beauty sleep so I can get up early and do it all again!

There you have it, a normal day in the life and times of a pro bodybuilder who has a family and a 40 hour/week job. Now I will outline my Phase (III) workouts, and give some more detail to the diet and supplementation.

Jeff onstage Twisting Bicep Back pose

Phase (III) Training

Before I go into my Phase 3 Training program let’s review what I did in Phase (I) and (II). Phase (I) started about nine months out from my target contest. I trained 4 days a week with mostly power movements primarily focusing on increasing strength and power. Rest between sets was not really measured as I wanted to lift as heavy as possible not caring about the time between sets. I normally performed the entire workout in one session.

I started Phase (II) about 12 weeks out from my target show. In Phase (II) I switched to more training sessions and used mostly bodybuilding exercises but still focused on lifting heavy and building muscle.

Now, in Phase (III) starting 6–8 weeks out I do almost all bodybuilding movements with higher reps than in the previous Phases. Exercises are performed slowly and controlled. Rest between (normal) sets was about one minute. Rest between giant sets was a little longer. I trained every day taking one day off every ten days.

I was not too concerned with the amount of weight used on each exercise; especially on the giant sets or drop sets. Focus was on squeezing the muscle. Flexing, stretching, and posing though out the workout. Attention to detail was foremost.

Day #1 
AM – Abs, Calves, Treadmill
Noon – Back – I rotated 2 different back and leg workouts
PM – Bi, Rear Delts

Day #2 
AM – Chest
Noon – Shoulders
PM – Triceps

Day #3
AM – Abs, Calves, Treadmill
Noon – Quads
PM – Hamstrings
First Rotation – Leg Workout
Squats 			3x10
Leg press  		3x15
with feet positioned wide and high
Leg extension	4 x 20 x15 x 10 x 10
DB walking lunge	2 x 20 steps each leg

Leg curl 		4 x 10
Reverse Hyper	3 x 15

Second Rotation Leg workout – Giant Sets: 3 sets – 10 reps each exercise.  No rest between
exercises (one big giant set).
NOTE: Better have a trash can available if you have eaten within the past few hours.
Front squat
Hack squat
Leg press
Leg extension
Barbell lunge

Leg curl 		4 x 10
Reverse Hyper	3 x 15

First Rotation – Back workout
Pulldowns to Front 	2 x 15
Pulldowns to Rear 	2 x15
T–Bar  		3 x 10 – 15
Stiff Arm Pullovers	2 x20
Barbell Shrugs	3 x 20 x 15 x 10

Second Rotation Back workout – Giant Sets: 3 sets – 10 reps each exercise.
No rest between sets (one big giant set).
Incline DB Row – performed on a free standing incline bench.
Barbell Row
Seated Pulley Row
Chins – * not great form but squeezed the lats as much as possible.

Incline DB curl	3 x 20 x 15 x 10
Concentration curl    2 x 15
Hammer curl 	2 x 12
Reverse cable curl 	3 x 20 x15 x 10 (performed on the seated pulley row machine)

Lying db raises         3 x 20 x 15 x 10 (on my side on the bench)

DB Bench   	3 x10
Incline Flyes 	3 x 15
Decline Barbell         3 x 10 x15 x10
Pec dec 		2 sets x 15
Cable Work              2 x15 (bent over, one arm at a time)

Skull Crushers 	    3 x 10
DB Extensions 	    3 x 10
Reverse Pushdowns 	    3 x 10

DB Press 3 Drop sets – 10 reps each NOTE: Reps performed slower that normal.
DB Front raises 	    3 x 15
Cable Lateral raises 	    3 x 15

Standing raises superset with seated raises 3 x 20

Cable crunches, Roman chair, leg lifts – each exercise performed for 1 minute in one giant set.
3 sets with 1 minute rest between sets.

Phase (III) Nutrition – Peaking Phase

Meal 1: 6 ounces chicken or turkey, 6 egg whites, grapefruit
Meal 2: 2 scoops Ultra Size, 1 tbsp Flax oil
Meal 3: 8 ounces chicken, 2 cups broccoli
Meal 4: same as meal #2
Meal 5: 8 ounces lean protein, 2 cups low carb vegetables
Meal 6: Protein pudding (2 scoops Ultra Size and just enough water to make a pudding texture) or 6 egg whites w/1 cup omelet vegetables, or protein pudding
Carb up meal on Monday and Thursday

My three–phase nutrition and training plan got me into the best shape of my life in 2006 at age 39. I went on to win the overall at the Mid West States Natural on November 17. My plan took discipline as you can see. That final Phase (III) peaking diet was really rough. But, I’ve learned after a decade of competition that to get in peak condition you have to pay the price. With the right training and nutrition program you can continue to gain muscle while you gradually get in shape. Then to really get ripped you have to do some serious dieting but with the right supplement program you can maintain and refine your lean muscle mass as you strip off that last and most important of all per cent of body fat.

If you don’t have my Phase (I) and (II) programs, they are online at In this series I’ve presented some insight into my lifestyle and showed you that a real person, with a real job and family (including six children) can still achieve his bodybuilding dreams. I want to wish you good luck in your next show and hope that I have helped you to realize by my own example that ’where there’s a will, there’s a way’. All it takes is a plan, a progressive training program, good, basic bodybuilding nutrition, and the best of the best supplements to achieve lean muscle gain with maximum fat loss.

Further Reading:
Phase (II) Training and Nutrition

Phase (I) Training and Nutrition for the 2006 Midwest States

NNM 12#1

© Beverly InternationalBack to top