KY State Overall Bodybuilding Heavyweight Champion

Training for 25 years

Dave Uhlman
Magazine 19 #4

My fitness journey has had a lot of ups and downs. Some amazing moments and some I’d like to forget. When I started training 25+ years ago I was a short chubby kid who was very self-conscious. I got into training to change the way I looked and improve my confidence. Life was good for the first 15 years. I made continual progress gaining nearly 60lbs of muscle over that time span. As I progressed, training and eating came to rule pretty much every minute of the day. I had some contest success with several class wins including the 2002 Mr. Ohio super heavyweight class. However, I was the big muscular guy who lacked that really dialed-in look needed to win the overall.

Never Give up Never give In

I’d train like an animal and eat the same way. Prep was always tough for me because I couldn’t wait for it to be over so I could get back to heavy training and eating. No regrets though. Well that’s not 100% true. The old saying If I knew then, what I know now..., definitely comes into play. I ultimately paid the price for always training heavy no matter what my body was telling me.

Over the next 10 years I had 5 rotator cuff tears (some I tore twice), a re-attached bicep tendon, a partial pec tear, herniated disc, and many other minor injuries. I lost 30lbs of muscle. I suffered mentally as well with bouts of depression, sadness, and a loss of hope. My worst moments came after a surgeon told me to find another sport and recommended that I never train again. But I never gave up.

Dave Uhlman KY State contest

In January, 2013 I made a pact with myself to get down to a low bodyfat for my 40th birthday. By the end of June I had gotten close to the 7% mark. Thoughts of competing started to resurface but I wasn’t sure if my body could do it again. I stayed at 7% or below for almost a year and in April, 2014 I pulled the contest trigger and committed 100%. I knew I wouldn’t have the same amount of mass as in the past, but my goal was to surpass my previous best condition by 10x’s. I also was determined to enjoy the entire contest prep process (including all the ups and the downs) as it could be my last time on stage. I hooked up with friend and fellow prep coach, Jason Theobald of Scooby Prep, to make sure I got to the stage in my best condition ever. Here’s my final 15-week prep schedule. Remember, I was starting at 7 percent bodyfat and was already within striking distance.

Diet

Each week I’d follow my base diet (see below) for 5 days. I had a LOW DAY (usually on Sunday when I didn’t train) where I ate the same foods as the base diet, but cut the carb portions in half. I also had a refeed day. It was similar to my base diet but calories were raised to between 4300-4700, the carb portions were increased, and until 4 weeks out I could substitute some foods I really liked at a couple meals. For example, I had cereal post training as my carb source, a Chipotle burrito for another of my meals, and made Ezekiel pizzas with low sugar sauce, fat free cheese, pineapple, and mushrooms. I loved my refeed days!

Here is an example of my base diet. I used a food scale to measure each portion so that we could make minor tweaks weekly, or sometimes even daily.
Upon Awakening: 2 scoops of Glutamine Select, 2 Energy Reserve, and a fat burner
30-35 min of fasted low intensity cardio each morning on a recumbent bike
Meal 1: 370 grams liquid egg whites, 3 pieces Ezekiel bread, 180 grams of blueberries, 1 organic brown rice cake, 5 grams natural peanut butter, Walden Farms maple syrup, 4 Fit Tabs
Meal 2: 82 grams UMP, 1 organic brown rice cake, 5 grams natural peanut butter
Meal 3: (pre workout) 220 grams grilled chicken, 220 grams jasmine rice, 80 grams sweet corn, 2 organic brown rice cakes, Walden Farms spicy BBQ sauce, Pre workout supplements: 12-14 Muscle Synergy tablets, 2 Energy Reserve, 1 fat burner
During workout: 2 scoops Glutamine Select, beta alanine, citrulline malate, creatine (note: Beverly Creatine Select, Up-Lift, and Fast Up provide effective doses of beta alanine, citrulline malate, and creatine.) Meal 4: (post workout) 90 grams cream of rice, 5 organic brown rice cakes, Walden Farms caramel sauce, 82 grams UMP
Meal 5: 82 grams UMP, 7 grams natural peanut butter
Meal 6: 210 grams grilled chicken, 1 can green beans
Snacks: Sugar-free Jello and more green beans if hungry which was every night

Training schedule

Dave bicep curl
I trained 6 days a week for the shows. Usually Sundays were my off day. Since I had several surgeries and physical limitations I incorporated more moderate weight for my workouts. I kept intensity high and rest times to a minimum. I’m a huge believer in slowing the movement down and feeling the muscle. I used a lot of pause techniques, drop sets, and almost always did super sets. Again more volume and time under tension was key for my physique and bringing out detail in the muscle.

Here is a sample of the type of training program I used most of the time.

Monday & Thursday: Chest, Biceps, Abs
Monday & Thursday: Chest, Biceps, Abs
Superset Group 1:
Incline DB Press: 15,12,10,8,8
Standing DB Curls: 15,12,10,8,8
Flat Bench Crunches: 5 x 25
Superset Group 2:
Cable Crossovers: 15,12,12,12,12 with a 10 second hold at end of each set
Cable Curls: 15,12,12,12,12
Floor Planks: 45 seconds for 5 sets
Superset Group 3:
Hammer Strength Incline Press: 15,12,10,10
Hammer DB Curls seated: 15,12,10,10
Roman Chair Knee Ups: 4 x 20
Superset Group 4: Incline DB Flyes: 15,12,10,10
Preacher Bench Single Arm Curls: 12,10,8,8
Pushups: 4 x 20 (hold at bottom for 10 sec on each set)
Tuesday & Friday: Legs, Calves
Tuesday & Friday: Legs, Calves
Superset Group 1:
Leg Curls: 20,15,12,10,10
Standing Calf Raise: 25,20,15,15,15 (stretch and squeeze between each set!)
Superset Group 2:
Leg Extensions: 20,15,12,10,10
Seated Calf Raise: 20, 15, 12, 12, 12 (stretch and squeeze between each set!)
Step Ups: 15 each leg with Dumbbells
Superset Group 3:
Squats: 20, 15, 12, 10, 8
Wall Sits: 45 seconds after each set of squats
Superset Group 4:
Leg Press: 15, 12, 12, 12, 12
Step Lunges: 5 sets of 20 each leg with 20-30lb Dumbbells
Wednesday & Saturday: Back, Shoulders, Triceps, Traps
Superset Group 1:
Pulldowns to front: 15, 12, 12, 12, 12
Cable Straight Bar Pushdowns: 20, 15, 12, 12, 12
Standing Side Lateral Raise: 20, 15, 12, 10, 10
Superset Group 2:
Barbell Deadlifts: 12, 10, 10, 10, 10
Lying DB Skull Crushers: 15, 12, 12, 12, 12
Seated Shoulder Press: 15, 12, 10, 10, 10
Superset Group 3:
Single Arm Row: 15, 12, 12, 12, 12
Dumbbell Kickbacks: 15, 12, 12, 12, 12
Single Side Lateral Raise: 5 sets of 12
Superset Group 4:
Cable Rear Delt High Row: 20, 15, 15, 15
Under Grip Pulldowns: 15, 12, 12, 12
Palms Facing Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 12, 10, 10, 10
Superset Group 5:
V-bar Tricep Pushdowns: 20, 15, 15, 15
Front Dumbbell Shoulder Raise: 4 sets of 12
Underhand Single Cable Tricep Pushdowns: 15, 15, 15, 15

Cardio:

In addition to my morning low intensity cardio, I also included two 15 minute High Intensity cardio sessions each week. I used the elliptical for my HIIT sessions.

Posing: I practiced my posing quite a bit. I think having muscle control is important and knowing what poses are your best and how to hit them properly is key. My back poses were some of my best, so I really keyed on glutes and hams, not just my back in these poses.

One Week Out – A Major Setback

As if training around major injuries wasn’t hard enough, I suffered a huge blow a week out from the 2014 KY State. I had a routine massage to help with recovery and keep my muscles loose, as I had done for the previous 12 years, and something bad happened. Several capillaries burst and my left pec swelled 5 times its size. Within 2 days bruising covered one quarter of my left pec and left side. 15 weeks of contest prep, not to mention 9 years waiting to get back on the stage, were in jeopardy. At 3 days out I decided to do the show regardless of all the bruising and inflammation. Well it all worked out and I won 3 classes (Masters 40+, KY Open heavyweight, KY State heavyweight) and the Overall KY State for 2014.

Dave mixing Ultimate Muscle Protein

Closing Thoughts

This prep was my favorite to date. Mentally I was engaged from the first minute of prep all the way through the final posedown of my show. It really helped that I had taken those 6 months back in 2013 to get down to 7% bodyfat and kept it there for a year. So when I started prep late April this year I was in a great spot to start. I was able to eat WAY more food, have more energy, and even put on some muscle getting ready for the shows. I believe if you are smart during the off season and keep bodyfat levels down then prep is more enjoyable and you have a better chance to get that super lean look without killing yourself. In closing, I want to key on one major point. And that is you can never give up on yourself or your dreams. No matter what obstacles come into your path you have to push on and not give up. I try to teach this to my clients and prep athletes. This last contest prep has taught me a lot about myself. I am stronger than I have ever been. Not physically by any means but mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. This sport can bring you so many wonderful things all you have to do is believe and Never Give Up. Never Give In!

Sandy digs deeper with Dave, one of our Beverly longtimers
1. When did you first meet up with Beverly International? What brought you into the Beverly cult?
I first discovered Beverly International in 1994. I knew I needed some help with supplements for my first contest so I asked around to see what others recommended. A lot of people were using Beverly so I gave it a shot. I used several Beverly products for that show and have been hooked ever since. I continued to put on muscle through the diet even though I was still learning the nutrition part of contest prep.
2. What changes have you seen through the years that you can contribute to using Beverly International?
The biggest change is gaining muscle. When I decided many years ago to use Beverly supplements I made a choice to go all in. Not just take the supplements here and there with no plan. I used them in the amounts and consistency needed to make huge changes. And it worked. Between 1994 and 1998 my contest weight rose from 175lbs to 218lbs while I was way leaner on stage. The biggest addition was the Beverly supplements during that period.
3. What is your favorite product?
It is tough to pick just one so I’m going to pick two. The combination of Ultra 40 and Mass aminos were a mainstay throughout my muscle gaining years. I took upwards of 40 of each a day, 5-6 with every meal. While bartending for many years I always had 2 small cups by my register. One contained Mass Aminos and the other, Ultra 40. I would take a few of each every hour that I worked. That along with my Beverly shakes ensured I always had killer nutrition all night long. I can’t tell you how many times people asked what kind of pills were in those cups!
4. Do you have a favorite protein recipe?
First, there are literally hundreds of killer recipes using UMP out there. I’ve never seen a protein used in so many ways to make tasty meal replacements. With that being said here’s one that’s quick and easy but tastes great!
Quick, Easy UMP Goodness.
  • 2 scoops chocolate UMP
  • 2 tbsp shaved coconut
  • 2 tbsp slivered almonds
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • ½ cup steel cut oats

Mix all ingredients in a bowl with just enough water to make a paste. Put in the fridge or freezer to cool.

5. How do you feel Beverly International compares to other companies in the industry?
Beverly is much more accessible to their customers than other companies in the industry. They have always been grounded and approachable no matter how successful they’ve become. They use the best ingredients to formulate their products. They don’t go the cheap route that so many other companies use.
I just want to say that I would not have built the physique I have without the help of BI supplements. I truly feel they have made a definitive difference in my quest for gaining lean mass and losing fat all these years. I also want to thank Roger and Sandy for all they have done for me over the years and truly am blessed to have had a relationship with them all these years!
6. What is something that sticks out in your memory about your association with BI?
What I remember most is Roger and Sandy’s willingness to help. For many years Roger helped me with my contest prep and he would always take time to regularly meet with me for updates and posing. He always cared how I progressed and put forth a lot of his time to help me. I learned a lot about nutrition during those sessions which I carry on to this day. I don’t know of many large business owners who would sacrifice their time like that. He always would and I’m still grateful for it.
7. Tell us a little more about yourself. What things are really important to you?
First and foremost my faith and family are at the top. I’m blessed with an awesome wife, two beautiful sons, and a great family that has always backed me and my dreams. Second, my business and helping others is very important to me. I’m lucky to have a job that I can help people not only achieve their best but in some cases overcome huge lifelong battles. To be part of a journey with people who are changing their lives to be more healthy and happy is awesome.
I have had my training and nutrition business, Elite Personal Training and Contest Prep, for 17 years. I offer in person training to clients in the Greater Cincinnati area and also online nutrition and training programs for competitors and non-competitors from all over the U.S., Canada, and several other countries. I work with all types of people with many different goals.

Mass Building Workouts

Dave states that he is training lighter now with more volume (more exercises, more sets, and more reps) than in the days when he was adding pounds of muscle to his frame. Many of you may be interested in the kinds of programs he used when adding nearly 60lbs of muscle to his frame. His starting bodyweight was 175lbs and he built it up to a relatively lean 235lbs over his first 15 years of training. Throughout his building phases his favorite supplements were (and still are) Mass Aminos, Ultra 40, and Muscle Synergy. Here are two mass building workouts you can try. One is for an advanced novice bodybuilder (6 months or more of training), the other for the intermediate who has been training regularly for at least one year.

Advanced Novice Mass Building Workout

Monday & Thursday: Chest, Back, Shoulders Start with 2-3 sets of Sit-Ups or another abdominal exercise. 15-20 reps should be fine. The idea is to get some ab work in and start the blood flowing.

ExerciseSets  Reps
Bench Press6  15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 5
Bent Row6  15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 5
Standing Presses5  12, 10, 8, 6, 5
Calf Raises5  15, 12, 10, 8, 6

Tuesday & Friday: Legs, Biceps, Triceps Start with Leg Raises or another abdominal exercise.

ExerciseSets  Reps
Squat6  15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 5
Straight Leg Deadlift4  12, 10, 8, 6
Barbell Curl 5  12, 10, 8, 6, 5
Close Grip Bench5  12, 10, 8, 6, 5

» Set/Rep Strategy:
You’ll be using a Pyramid Set/Rep scheme. That means you’ll add weight each set while reducing the reps. Here’s an example of how you might incorporate the 6 sets / 15-5 reps for the Bench Press:

  Set #WeightsReps
  19512
  213512
  316510
  4 1858
  520010
  6 2105

When you can get all 5 reps on your final set in good form add weight to sets #3-6 on your next workout. If your workout calls for 5 sets of 12-5 reps, you’ll use the same procedure but your 1st set will be 12 reps instead of 15.

» Dave Uhlman
Blast Workout For Herculean Muscle Quality

How He Went From 289 pounds to 238 pounds of Hard Mass!


Dave At A Glance
Age: 41
Occupation: Owner of Elite Personal Training and Contest Prep
Family: Married to my beautiful wife, Susan for 7 years and two amazing boys, Braylon – 5 yr old and Aston – 1 yr old Current Residence: Union, KY
Years training (total): 26
Height: 5′11″; Weight: 212 (Contest)
Favorite Bodybuilding Meal: There are quite a few! Jasmine rice, corn, organic rice cakes, grilled chicken, and Walden Farm’s Spicy BBQ. Mix it all up and enjoy! Favorite supplements: For my last contest I used Beverly’s Muscle Synergy, Fit Tabs, Glutamine Select, Multiple Enzyme, Energy Reserve, and UMP. All of these were used to give me added energy, help ensure no muscle loss, increase absorption of foods, and as far as the UMP, it gives me a great treat when my sweet tooth is calling!
What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly supplements before? If you are trying to gain muscle then Ultra 40 and Mass Aminos, and Muscle Synergy for a great pump during training.
Music: I listen to either Techno music while training or very relaxing and chill music when driving. Usually Pandora is on and gives great mixes for either.
Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: I love to hang out with my wife and kids. It might not sound exciting but just being with them and having family time is the best. I also do an out of state fishing trip each year, usually in Florida. I love relaxing and being on the ocean!
Words to live by: Never give up. Never give in. You are never too old or beat up to reach your ultimate goals. Believe in yourself, have faith, Bust Your Butt and anything is possible!