I was diagnosed with type one diabetes at the age of 4. Instead of letting the disease control me, I did my best to control it. I stayed active as a kid, played sports as I grew older, and lifted my first barbell at age 16. It does take some extra planning and regular monitoring of my blood sugars, but I am living proof that a person can live a normal life and even the life of a bodybuilder, while being diabetic.
My love for lifting weights was born the summer of my sophomore year. I weighed just 120 pounds and started to lift weights and eat a bodybuilder type diet to build my body up for sports. Since that time I have rarely missed a planned workout. I do take a planned week off every 6-8 months just to give my body a break.
I had achieved some excellent size gains by age 19. I was up to 220 pounds when a veteran bodybuilder, Murrell Hall, who had just won the 70 and over class at the NPC masters nationals saw potential in me. He suggested I try a competition and I entered my first show placing 3rd in the open heavyweights. My love for bodybuilding was born. Since that time I have competed in a number of contests, winning many, and attaining my pro-card in two natural organizations. In this article, I will tell you how I prepared for my latest natural competition, the 2011 NPC Team Universe, where I placed 3rd in the heavyweight division.