Confidence, Commitment, and Ultra-40

By: Tom House
Magazine 8 #3

Tom House Fall/2002 Contest Placings:

2002 Milwaukee Regional Musclemania
  • 1st place Masters Overall
  • 1st place Novice Division
2002 Midwest Fitness Festival Musclemania
  • 1st place Elite/45-55 age group
  • 2nd place Welterweight Open Division
    (losing to the eventual overall winner)
2002 NPC Northern Natural Classic
  • 1st place Masters Overall
  • 2nd place Middleweight Open Division
2002 NPC North Star (NQ) (non-tested show)
  • 1st place Masters/40-49
  • 4th place Middleweight Open Division
Rita, None of this would have been possible without your help and caring. Thank You for making my dreams happen.

If there was one Beverly product that I simply would refuse to let anyone take away from me, it would have to be those liver pills

The quality of the supplements was always discussed, but the real beauty of Beverly was the people involved

Rita Kaya Beverly staff member
I had read about Rita Kaya on the website, but had no idea how instrumental she would be in helping me achieve my goals

I had no idea that I’d let it happen, but at just 48 years of age, I’d allowed myself to become a spectator.

Yes, I was extremely busy, in fact not a day went by that I didn’t wish I had at least a couple more hours to get to everything that needed to be done. I was spending sixty-plus hours a week managing a fitness equipment company, I was turning away new clientele in my personal training business due to time availability, and I lived in and maintained some rental buildings that the bank owned, yet were kind enough to let me pay the taxes and put my name on the title.

Tom House front double bicep
Are you stuck at the 10 percent bodyfat barrier?
I was until I contacted Beverly International

I had been competitive all of my life in everything from athletics to motor sports, but I’d now reached a point of complacency. Sure, my businesses were demanding, but had become routine. My training clientele were progressing, but they had become satisfied with their progress, which diminished the sense of accomplishment I derived from their success. Even my buildings seemed to remain in constant "maintenance mode". In other words, I was working very hard at standing still … there was no progression, no personal growth taking place.

I’d been training since my late twenties. Granted, there were several breaks over the years, some long term. Still, the world of fitness had become my lifestyle and my livelihood. The "mystique" of bodybuilding had become my passion. I never passed up an opportunity to go to a show. The more shows I attended; the greater became my desire to try it myself. I knew this was something I really wanted to do, at least once in my life. I’d had many false starts where I’d send for entry forms and competition packs, but something else always came up … or rather I allowed it to.

Finally, when I turned 45, I made the decision. I would compete in the Masters Division of the Mr. Minnesota. I began to lay out my plan. The timing was right, so I decided to also participate in a twelve-week transformation challenge as I was getting into contest shape. Training would be no problem. This was my background. I was already eating five or six "bodybuilder’s diet meals" each day. I strictly followed the transformation sponsor’s suggestions regarding supplement usage.

Tom House Before Beverly
lat spread after Beverly
Here is my "before" photo. I did my best to look my worst - several weeks of "holiday eating", "potbelly posturing", and an "unkempt" appearance. I kept getting stronger and more muscular as the contests approached.

The twelve weeks seemed to fly by. My before and after photos did show a marked "transformation". But there was one minor detail that was really bothering me. My "before" photo was taken after several weeks of "holiday eating", a bit of "potbelly posturing", and a definite attempt to present an "unkempt" appearance. In reality, I had not made near the progress indicated in the photos. I was still at 10 percent bodyfat. I felt lethargic and looked nowhere near ready for a bodybuilding contest.

The show date crept closer and I began to worry. My body was not changing … I’d discovered the way to a 10% bodyfat physique, but not a contest ready physique. When I cut calories, I lost size and strength. If I maintained my food intake and trained harder, I still looked soft and bloated. I put my tail between my legs and found myself once again, in the audience for the 2000 Mr. Minnesota … a spectator.

I tried to maintain my 10 percent bodyfat physique, as I continued to follow my supposed "quality" supplement regime, and began a new quest to find out what went wrong.

My search ended the day I accidentally stumbled onto a site called I found myself spending every spare moment devouring the information presented there. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but there was something different here. Sure, there were some very impressive photos on the site, but the athletes weren’t all HUGE! … Many of the smaller guys looked GREAT!! I was amazed at the condition they were able to achieve, and still maintain the appearance of impressive muscularity. I could also tell that many of the athletes featured were obviously NATURAL trainers … This is one area where I will not even consider compromise

The company responsible for these successes was Beverly International Nutrition. I recalled reading briefly about Beverly in Bill Phillips’ Sports Supplement Review a few years back. My best recollection of his analogy of Beverly was that it had been around since the stone ages of bodybuilding, and something about "liver pills".

I did not know if this was the same company that Phillips had seemed to minimize, but I knew I’d spent a truckload of MY money on one of the companies he’d supported to this point, and I was getting more and more excited about what I was seeing on this website.

I decided to take the next step, and actually contacted some of the people about whom I’d been reading. These were "real people", and their testimonials over the phone were even more impressive than they were in print. The quality of the supplements was always discussed, but I was surprised to hear that the real beauty of Beverly was the people involved. The fact that they make some of the finest products available on the market is not enough for them, their customer service, accessibility, and eagerness to help the average guy is what really convinced me to give them a try.

I placed a small order, and took advantage of their free fax-back service for a personalized diet. I was surprised at how quickly my request for a diet was processed. I had read about Rita Kaya during my research on the website, but I had no idea how instrumental she would be in helping me achieve my goals.

I’m one who is unable to make multiple changes at the same time in my fitness program, so I decided to start simple. Initially, I made just two changes. I substituted Beverly’s Ultra Size for my current pre-packaged "meal replacement" (three times a day), and I substituted Beverly’s Muscle Provider for my current "major label" whey protein powder. I made no other changes in my training, food intake, or schedules.

Within just a couple of weeks, I felt a difference. My bloating, and digestive issues had all but disappeared, and my pants were beginning to fit looser in my waist. I later learned that this was a result of removing the "fillers" and cheaper grade proteins there were used in my previous products.

I gradually made the full transition into Rita’s recommendations, and within a couple of months, had my bodyfat tested at a little over 8 percent … I was not only getting leaner, I was NOT losing muscle, in fact I was getting stronger!

By this time I was placing regular orders with Beverly (it was beginning to appear on my clients’ shelves as well). Everything I had heard in my "fact finding" about Beverly’s customer service, I found to be understated. They simply were not to be believed … from taking the time to courteously answer ALL of my questions (or one of my clients’), to their consistency in deliveries, their endless supply of literature for distribution to customers, to even remembering me on my birthday and holidays. This is not just a supplement company; they are like an extended family of people that care.

It all clicked. I finally had found a source of information in which I placed my full CONFIDENCE. I trusted Rita completely to help me make the physical changes that I would need to make in order to successfully compete. Now, all I needed to do was to follow through with it … It was up to me to make the COMMITMENT.

Knowing myself as I do, I knew the larger the COMMITMENT, the more motivated I would be. Now remember, I had never even been backstage at a bodybuilding competition, and had no idea what went into competing other than what I had witnessed from the audience. I looked over the contest schedules and settled upon five show dates. All were between mid August, and early November. Now when I say, "Settled upon five", I don’t mean five to select from, but I intended to DO ALL FIVE … As they say, ignorance is bliss.

I contacted Rita with my plans, and after a slight hesitation, she resounded with a very supportive Well, we better get to work! … We were off and running.

I won’t go into detail here about the meal and supplement schedules Rita put me on, as they are very much like many already posted on the Beverly site. However, if there was one Beverly product that I simply would refuse to let anyone take away from me, it would have to be those “liver pills”, that I remember from my first association of the name, Beverly International.

Almost from the very beginning, I discovered that by “chewing” my ULTRA-40’s, I could also satisfy my biggest weakness … my need for CRUNCH. I absolutely loved and craved, chips, nuts, anything I could chomp on. After everyone of my Beverly prescribed nutrient dense feedings, I would reward myself with my "dessert" … a nice handful of ULTRA-40s!! … Rita suggested six with each meal, but I am sure I seldom would have less than double that amount. I have seen ULTRA-40 described as "The perfect bodybuilding food", and often times if I found myself unable to meet a feeding, I would tide myself over with a handful of my favorite "treat". I never went anywhere without my bottle of ULTRA-40, I had them stored away everywhere. Often I would awake in the middle of the night, with binge on my mind … ULTRA-40’s to the rescue. They saved me many a night, as I stood there eating them by the fistful, as if eating a bag of peanuts, or M & M’s! Rita would often break into a chuckle during our Tuesday evening strategy sessions whenever I unfolded the latest tale of my ULTRA-40 escapades … of course, she would always responsibly stress the importance of moderation … in between chuckles.

    [ Editor’s note: Please do not think we are trying to convince you that Ultra 40 tastes like candy. On a diet, a small number of clients, like Tom, have expressed that they enjoy chewing them. ]

I was getting tremendous positive feedback and encouragement as the show date approached. However, I did have one very real concern … how was I going to apply my Pro-Tan alone? Necessity is the mother of invention … If the COMMITMENT is there; you can always find a way. I discovered that a precisely bent spatula with a foam brush taped at the correct angle, works very nicely for applying Pro Tan to almost all areas of the back … add to that a few strategically placed mirrors, and VOILA!! … I am proud to say, I applied every stroke of all 24 coats of Pro Tan that I used over the course of four shows. COMMITMENT is a very powerful thing.

One of my five shows ended up being cancelled, but I was able to satisfy my COMMITMENT to myself, to Rita, and to my sport, by not only competing in all four of the remaining shows, but also winning a Masters class in each of them.

I was no longer a spectator … I remind myself everyday that life is far too short to spend it watching someone else pursue his or her dreams. There is no doubt in my mind that constantly supplying my body with the nutrients it needed through Beverly supplements while on the proper caloric restricted diet, was the key that had been missing before. I cannot thank Rita and the entire Beverly International staff enough, for making their knowledge and experience available to me.

On a bit of a side note … my allegiance to Beverly International for "personal reasons" has turned out to be one of the best business decisions that I never intentionally made. I have always made what I thought were the finest QUALITY nutritional supplements and fitness apparel available to my clients, now I KNOW that I do … Beverly International is the EXCLUSIVE nutritional supplement line at the House of Fitness.

Should anyone have an interest in contacting me for any reason … I am located in Duluth, Minnesota, and can be reached at (218) 727-2721 or by writing [email protected]

As the note on my refrigerator reminds me … We weren’t born winners or losers, we were born to be choosers … I guess that’s why we have Beverly International …

Related articles:

Dave Draper
Supplements and Steel: Desiccated Liver

Jim Heflin
I decided to include Liver Tabs in the Beverly International line of supplements.

Tom’s Pre-Contest Training Strategy

The criterion I set for my contest preparation training was quite simple. I wanted to use safe, basic movements that I enjoyed doing. This was not the time for a lot of experimentation, or for subjecting my joints and connective tissue to new movements.

As I was designing my precontest training program, I read an article in Body Muscle Journal titled "Non Steroid Basic Training". The article was primarily designed for adding muscular size, but the format appealed to me. I know that contest preparation is hardly the time to think about growth, but I saw this program as a way to continue to lift heavy, while still keeping the intensity level high. The thing I liked best about this program was alternating opposing muscle groups in a push/pull style of training. This, I felt, would allow me adequate rest between subsequent sets for each bodypart, while at the same time keep the rest between consecutive sets very short, for higher intensity. I followed the format for bodyparts as illustrated in the article, only making minor changes in exercise selection and placement of one of the rest days. My schedule looked like this:

   > Monday: Chest and Back
   > Tuesday: Legs (Light)
   > Wednesday: Rest
   > Thursday: Shoulders/ Biceps and Triceps
   > Friday: Legs (Heavy)

I followed this through the entire contest preparation period, and even between contests. I continued to plan progression into every workout, even if it was just one more rep on only one exercise. During the last couple weeks prior to the show, I would also ‘drop set’ the final set for each muscle group, further increasing the intensity. I intentionally placed my leg workouts on the days following my carb loading meals, since that is usually when I felt the strongest, and then followed legs with a day of rest. The rest day was an ideal time to incorporate stretching and to practice posing, as it seemed to minimize muscle soreness, and help increase muscle separation.

Despite being on a low carb, restricted calorie diet, an amazing thing happened. I actually set ALL TIME personal bests in terms of the weight I was using (for reps). Four weeks out from my second show, with bodyfat levels under 7 percent, I was the strongest I had ever been in my entire life.

If there was any doubt as to the reason for my strength increases, it came to light several weeks after I finished the fall competition season. I decided to make a couple changes in my supplementation program, just out of curiosity. I eliminated my “Muscle Synergy Stack” – eight Muscle Synergy, four GH Factor, and one-half teaspoon Beverly Glutamine - that Rita had suggested for me, and cut my Ultra-40 intake back. My strength soon started diminishing. A couple of weeks later and despite being twenty pounds heavier, my strength level was less than it was during my contest preparation mode … now THAT was an eye opener!

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