No Nonsense Guide to Excellence

Part One – The Off Season

By: Jeremiah Forster
Magazine 6 #4

For more about Jeremiah's Guide to Excellence
- Part Two - The Gaining Phases:
No Nonsense Guide to Excellence

How many times have you read, Beverly International took me from a struggling bodybuilder to a champion in the matter of a few months? Well, first off are these stories true? Yes! I know! I was one of the Beverly International Amazing Transformation stories in Vol. V, No. 3 of the No Nonsense Newsletter.

But what happens next? You’ve just attained the best condition of your life. Where do you go from there? Well, that’s what I’m going to do in this series of articles. I’m going to tell you what I did to go from a good local light heavy at 195 lbs when I won my class at the Ohio championships to weighing in at 215 at the 2000 NPC Nationals in New York. I’m going to tell you exactly what I did to improve on my best ever condition and bring me to a new level that I could only of imagined in my dreams!

Bodybuilder Jeremiah Forster

This transition happened in less than a year and a half. There’s no doubt in my mind that it was my strict off–season diet and even more so my evolving Beverly International supplement plan that was responsible for my remarkable improvement. Before I tell you what I did I’ll give you one of the keys right up front. I cheated on my diet only three times during the entire eight months chronicled in this article. My worst body fat reading during the entire 16 months following the 1999 Ohio was 6.8%. Maintaining my condition throughout this entire time period, while following meticulously set out diet and supplement programs allowed me to compete 20 lbs. heavier this year – harder and leaner than my best ever previous condition at the 1999 Ohio.

The date was June 12, 1999 in what was the biggest accomplishment in my bodybuilding career to that point. I proudly stepped off stage with a class win at one of the toughest state shows in the country. I proudly wore my Beverly International T-shirt that evening and enjoyed myself maybe a bit too much. The next morning I arose with a new confidence and pride in myself and in Beverly International. I did not reflect on my win too long however I was already thinking about what was next, I am a perfectionist and never satisfied so I was happy with my physique but I knew it was just the tip of the iceberg.

A few days later Su (my soon to be wife) and I had dinner with Roger and Sandy. That evening I disclosed a revelation to Roger that I believe made a big difference in how he was to formulate my various nutritional and training strategies. I told Roger that I’d tried nearly every diet and training program on the market. Not for just a few weeks but I had given 100% to each one for the recommended length of each.

I’ve been bodybuilding since I was 13 years old. Since that time IŠve tried literally every workout and nutrition program in the magazines or on the market. (What was really cool was that Roger seemed to know something about all of them.) I used the Cybergenics program when I was 15; a year later I purchased the Bio Phase program from Larry Scott. Long before Bill Phillips had EAS or Muscle Media or Body for Life he had a tiny company that sold a course called Powerbuilding and a then revolutionary supplement called Creatine. At age 18 I sent away for both. I was the first person I knew to try creatine (this was back in 1993).

So why was this so important to Roger? It proved I was a true Beverly Believer, not because it was my only frame of reference, but because I had tried everything and nothing even approached the success I experienced following the Beverly International program.

Working part-time at Beverly now, I realize that it is essential for the client to be extremely dedicated and very open-minded - Roger now knew that I had these qualities and that I had a complete trust in him. Therefore he was able to pull out all the stops. He told me that to get to the next level we would have to do some things that may seem unconventional.


Phase 1 July 1 – August 15, 1999

In late June 1999 I started on the first phase of my off-season diet. I don’t think either of us could predict just how much improvement I was about to make. My diet at this point was very similar to a contest diet but slightly higher in calories. Roger’s reasoning behind this was my body had just been through a tremendous amount of stress during contest prep and it was time to back off a hair, stay lean and recuperate. I started on a moderate supplement regimen and while continuing to train but with a slight decrease in volume.

My supplement program included a Super Pak, 6 Mass Aminos and 6 Ultra 40 with each meal and 1 Ultra C and 1 Beverly International Antioxidant in the morning and evening.


Meal #1
8 oz. 93% lean beef, chicken breast or turkey breast 
3 egg whites, 1 yolk
1/2 grapefruit 

Meal #2
Protein Drink: 2 scoops Muscle Provider, 1 scoop Egg Protein,
4 TBS Heavy Cream, 6 frozen peach slices or
frozen strawberries or
9 oz can tuna or 8 oz Chicken breast 
3 egg whites, 1 tomato

Meal #3
8 ounces chicken or very lean beef
Salad with 2 TBL Vinegar and Oil dressing

Meal #4
8 oz chicken
2 cups vegetables

Meal #5
Protein Drink: 2 scoops Muscle Provider, 
1 scoop Egg Protein, 4 TBS Heavy Cream, 
6 frozen peach slices or frozen strawberries

Meal #6
8 oz. 93% lean beef, chicken breast or turkey breast 
3 egg whites, 1 yolk
1/2 grapefruit 

Every 3rd day I ate the following carb load meal in place of my sixth meal: 1.5 cups oatmeal (measured before adding water), a 10 oz. sweet potato, 1 banana, 1 cup vegetables, 1 TBS butter.
Phase 2 August 15 to October 15, 1999
In mid August, two months after the Ohio, when the majority of competitors were getting blown up and fat I was staying mean and lean. Because I followed a strict post contest nutritional program and kept my weight and body fat down, I was now able to switch to a higher calorie diet.


Meal #1
8 oz beef (93% lean)
4 whole eggs
½ grapefruit

Meal #2 
2 scoops Muscle Provider
1 scoop 100% Egg
6 TBS heavy cream
1 TBS Safflower Oil
5 oz frozen strawberries

Meal #3
8 oz beef
3 egg whites
2 cups spinach or other leafy green vegetable (or salad)
1 TBS olive oil, 2 TBS cider vinegar or 2 TBS Newman’s Own oil and vinegar

Meal #4
2 scoops Muscle Provider
1 scoop 100% Egg
6 TBS heavy cream
1 TBS Safflower Oil
5 oz frozen strawberries

Meal #5
8 oz beef
2 cups vegetables
1 oz walnuts

Meal #6  
2 servings Mass Maker, 1 TBS cream, 12 oz water 
Or: 8 egg whites or small (4 – 5 oz) chicken breast, 
8 oz sweet potato, 1 cup rice, 1 cup vegetables, 
1 TBS sesame oil Or: 
1.5 scoops Muscle Provider, 1-cup oatmeal, 
1 TBS natural peanut butter, 1 small banana, and
a 6 oz sweet potato or 1 cup rice or beans

Supplements:
Super Pak w/ meal #1, 1 Ultra-C before training & before bed 
6 Mass per meal, 6 Ultra 40 per meal
1 TBS Flax Oil and 2 Anti Oxidant daily

Roger kept warning me that no matter how clean I was eating, my body would eventually start adding fat. Late October came and the wall Roger warned me about hit me smack in the face with a simple bodyfat test. Without cheating once my body fat had increased by a per cent while my weight remained stable.

Phase 3: Mid October - December

Now came a real test for my Beverly International supplements. Could I defeat my body’s attempt to add fat while at the same time retain the new muscle tissue I had built over the past two months?

We had to decrease my calorie levels but in order not to burn too much muscle I decided my only option was to increase my supplement intake. I experimented with a new approach taking Amino Acids during my training, a total of 20 -30 Muscle Mass Branch Chain Amino Acids (10 before training and 4 more every 10 minutes during my training session).

The results were remarkable! In just five weeks my bodyfat had decreased 11/2 points. I achieved a quality look that I only dreamed about before the experiment. I looked a million times better already.

Here is the diet and supplement program I used from October 15 to December 1 to maintain lean mass, improve my weak points and lower my bodyfat by 1.5 percent.


Meal # 1
9 egg whites
1 cup oatmeal or 2 servings Cream of Rice or
Grits 1 rice cake

Meal # 2
5 oz lean meat (chicken, fish or turkey)
1 cup rice
1 cup vegetables

Meal # 3
5 ounces lean meat
10 oz potato
1 cup vegetables

Meal # 4
5 ounces lean meat
8 oz. baked potato or yam
1 cup vegetables

Meal # 5
5 oz lean meat
1 cup cooked rice
1 cup vegetables

Meal # 6
9 egg whites
1 cup oatmeal or 2 servings Cream of Rice or Grits
1 rice cake

For a meal replacement I combined 1 serving Mass Maker + 1 scoop Ultra Size in 12 oz water whenever it was inconvenient to prepare a whole food meal.

Jeremiah taking Muscle Mass
I experimented with a new approach taking Amino Acids during my training, a total of 20 -30 Muscle Mass Branch Chain Amino Acids (10 before training and 4 more every 10 minutes during my training session).

As you can tell by the simplicity of my diet the supplements were really the key to my improvements during this phase. Here is my advanced supplement program:
I realized during this phase that my training was in need of an overhaul. I’d been training on a basic every body part once a week mode for some time. Now, with the urging of Roger, and help from Larry Schweer and Charles Poliquin, I completely restructured my training. I realized there was not just one, correct way to train. Here is the training cycle that I used during this phase incorporating high volume, supersets and time under tension:

Four Days On – 1 Off, then start over on Day 6.
Day #1 - Chest / Shoulders (30 total sets)
Day #2 - Back (27 Total Sets)
Day #3 - Legs / Calves (26 total sets)
Day #4 - Biceps / Triceps (24 Total sets)
Day #5 - OFF
Day #2, #4 &. #5 Abs / Lower Back
Day #1 - Additional High Volume Calf Workout

Here as an illustration of how my program looked:

Day #1: Chest / Shoulders
Tempo 3-1-2 example: 3 seconds negative, 1 second pause at bottom and 2 second positive

I started with the flat Bench Press and then followed with the DB Shoulder Press. I performed all sets of Bench Press, then all sets of DB Shoulder Press. The rest of the training program consisted of supersetting a chest exercise with a shoulder exercise. I rested 90 seconds between each set of Bench Press and DB Shoulder Press, then 60 seconds after the completion of each superset.

Bench Press – 5 sets, 3-1-2 tempo, same weight for each set, choose a weight that allows a maximum of 12 reps on your first set. My sets might go:

 


12 reps (315 lbs) 
11 reps (315 lbs) 
 9 reps (315 lbs)
 8 reps (315 lbs)
 5 reps (315 lbs)

DB Shoulder – 5 sets, 3-1-2 tempo same weight for each set, choose a weight that allows a maximum of 12 reps on your first set. Remember the tempo and rest intervals between sets are more important than the number of reps you can get. Stick with the prescribed tempo and rest intervals.

Super Set #1 DB Incline Press / Lateral Raise 2-1-2 tempo; 60 seconds rest after completion of each superset. Start with a weight for each exercise that will allow 10 reps. Complete a total of 4 supersets. The reps will decrease as the sets progress. Again, stick with the prescribed tempo and rest intervals above all else.

Super Set #2 Crossovers / Bent over Lateral Raise 4 supersets - same tempo and rest interval as Super Set #1. Start with a weight for each exercise that will allow 12 reps on your first set.

Finishing Exercise: DB Pullovers 12 reps first set, same weight all 4 sets, 3-1-2 tempo, 60 sec rest all sets.

The combination of a revised training program and innovative supplement program allowed me to do something totally unexpected. I actually became stronger at a time when I was simply trying to maintain lean muscle and fight muscle breakdown.

The more sophisticated my training and supplement programs became the more my muscle quality increased. I was adding lean mass and keeping my bodyfat low!

Phase 4: December to February

During Phase 3 I was able to stymie my body’s propensity to store bodyfat. Now, I would attempt to add some lean muscle and a little bodyweight while I maintained my low bodyfat level.

I took a break from the time under tension training procedure and went back-to-basics. I cut down on the number of exercises I did but increased the number of sets for each. I concentrated on basic movements, kept my reps between 8 – 12 and continued to limit rest intervals between sets to 90 – 120 seconds. The best way for me to increase muscle during a higher calorie phase is to increase the total volume of sets I do on a particular exercise - not just the amount of weight I am lifting. I continued my 4 on 1 off split, training my whole body over a 4-day period then taking a day off and repeating the cycle.

I had kicked my calorie and supplement intake up a notch and my body responded beautifully. I added a new item to my supplement program: Bev ZMA! Wow that product is awesome! I have never taken anything that has given me the recovery time ZMA has. Since my calorie level was now at a higher level I switched from Muscle Mass BCAAs during training to Mass aminos. I found that loading my muscle tissues with Beverly International’s Mass Peptide Bonded Aminos during training allowed me to bring up weak points in my physique in just six weeks that in the past would have required an entire year of training.


Meal #1
2 whole eggs + 4 egg whites
8 oz. 93% lean beef 
1 TBS Flax Oil

Meal #2
Protein Drink: 2 Scoops Muscle Provider, 1 scoop 100% Egg,
4 TBS whipping cream (2 oz.), 6 strawberries and
12-oz water

Meal #3
5 oz. Turkey or chicken breast and 5 oz beef
(ground sirloin, round or filet)
Large salad with 2 TBS. Low Cal Dressing

Meal #4
Protein Drink: 2 Scoops Muscle Provider, 1 scoop 100% Egg, 
4 TBS whipping cream (2 oz.), 
6 strawberries and 12-oz water

Meal #5 
10 oz. Chicken breast 
8 oz sweet potato
2 cups vegetables

Meal #6 
10 oz lean meat
Large salad with 2 TBS. Newman’s dressing or
2 cups vegetables Or: 8 oz. Lean meat, 4 egg whites,
2 cups vegetables, 1 oz walnuts

Supplement Programs
Super Pak w/ 1st meal , 6 Ultra 40 w/ every meal, 
6 Mass Aminos per meal,  1 TBS. (15 g) L- Glutamine before and
after training, 1 Ultra C and 1 Antioxidants in the AM and PM
35 to 40 Mass Aminos during each training session
3 ZMA 30 minutes before bedtime on an empty stomach

In early January with my wedding rapidly approaching Roger suggested that this would be a good time to back off training volume and lower calories. I reduced my sets, trained just 4 days per week and followed the Phase 1 diet listed at the beginning of this article. My supplement program remained the same as above but with the reduction in calories I replaced the Mass aminos once again with Muscle Mass BCAAs during each training session. Remember, this diet was about 800 calories more than my previous contest diet. Now I was using it to cut up for my honeymoon! The end of January came two days before my wedding I was 215 at 5.0%, the Muscle Mass and ZMA added another level of muscle maturity that I had never seen before.

Photos taken on my honeymoon looked like contest photos and illustrate that the past 8 months had taken my physique to a whole new level! Still, so far I’d just been setting the stage for the phenomenal results yet to come. My metabolism was changing with my body and it was just waiting to explode. In the next No Nonsense Newsletter I’ll illustrate the next phases of my diets where we incorporated state of the art nutrition and supplement programs for serious gains in size and muscularity.

– Part Two &n The Gaining Phases
No Nonsense Guide to Excellence