The Journey From Transformation to Competition

By: Tom Roehl
Magazine 9 #1

Beverly puts its resources into research and development of effective supplements in the real world.

I now have the body at 44 I wanted when I was 17.
What a feeling of accomplishment!
I depended on Ultra Size and Muscle Provider, for the majority of my protein supplementation. No other protein supplement gives me the "pump" I get with Ultra Size and Provider.

As I hugged my wife Teri after the contest that night, tears of pride streaming down her face, I couldn’t help but think how far we had come. Teri was the first to make an amazing transformation. Seeing her change rekindled a dream in me that had been lost for 20 years. And now we stood there, together, holding the Mid States Masters Championship 1st place trophy.

I have to laugh when I think back to our first date twenty-five years ago. We attended the Mr. Wisconsin State Fair Contest. Teri was there too at the Jr. Mr. Milwaukee contest, consoling a very discouraged 18-year old after my first and only other bodybuilding competition.

Tom Before imageTom Roehl after image

Poor nutrition, lack of exercise, and neglect had taken its toll over the years. I was 248 pounds and pushing size 40 pants (left image). I weighed 166 pounds at 5.3% bodyfat the day of the Mid States Masters.

I became interested in bodybuilding when I was 15. I was working bussing tables, things were a bit slow, and Wide World of Sports was on the TV in the bar across the room. It was the Mr. World contest in Columbus, Ohio. This was the contest where Arnold beat Sergio Oliva for the first time and planted the seeds for future Arnold Classics. I was psyched; I wanted to look like this. The next day I rode my bike several miles to the newsstand and purchased my first bodybuilding magazine. Dave Draper was on the cover posing with a Weider arm blaster. I discovered a "new world" that day. Many years have passed yet the feeling of that "discovery" has remained with me to this day.

I went to a local gym to get started on my quest for a new body. When I found I could not afford the membership fee I talked the owner into letting me clean the gym and write a little gym newsletter in exchange for a membership. I spent many hours working out and just hanging out in the gym at a time when I could have been hanging out with the wrong crowds. Instead I learned the bodybuilding requirements for success that translate over into the skills necessary for success in all aspects of life - self-discipline, hard work, and persistence.

I spent countless hours studying the training routines of my heroes, guys like Steve Reeves, Arnold, Frank Zane, Vince Gironda, Mike Mentzer, Bill Pearl? I tried every routine and drank every popular weight gain formula trying to add muscle. Boy they tasted horrible back then! But I was determined! And from 130 pounds at 15 years old, I’d gone to 170 pounds when I entered that first contest, the Mr. Jr. Milwaukee. This contest that closed an early chapter of my life was held late in the evening after completion of a daylong Olympic weightlifting event. Their idea of a stage was a spotlight hung over a basketball hoop at the local YMCA.

Now my career and other activities took precedence over my bodybuilding. I’d built a small home gym in our first home, but still my workouts went from more and more infrequent to non-existent. Oh, I’d get on a roll every once and a while after picking up a new bodybuilding magazine, but something else always "came up" and I’d quit working out again.

It’s easy to look back now and see how easily it happens. A big gulp Mountain Dew and several large chocolate chip cookies was just the start of my "normal" day. I’d follow that with plenty of fast food, biggie sized of course, stress eating, and a desk job. It all added up over the years.

Journey & Transformation
I still have a lot of room for improvement! Real Transformation to me, like bodybuilding, is a lifelong process of continual growth and development – Spiritually, Physically, Mentally & Emotionally.

Teri gained weight right along with me. The funny thing is we really didn’t seem to notice what was happening. I wonder, "How could we have let ourselves go that far downhill!" Yet, I don’t think our story is all that unusual. I believe most of us fall in to a "comfort zone" where gradually and subtly we gain several pounds of fat a year and don't really notice it... until something triggers an emotion strong enough to create change.

Teri’s trigger came one hot August evening. She tearfully confessed she was just not happy with the way she looked. I must admit I was not only surprised but couldn’t understand why she felt the way she did. I agreed to put a training program together for her and supported her efforts. Teri went from a size 14 to a size six by Christmas that year. As her transformation continued, it ignited a spark inside me. One week in February as I was trying on some new pants, it hit me hard. I realized I was now either going to have to buy a size 40 or do something about my body. The one time skinny kid had ballooned up to 248 pounds!

I went to work and lost 20 pounds in 12 weeks. I felt better than I had in years, and with the fire inside re-lit I wanted more. It was then I stumbled upon my eventual coach and mentor, David Greenwalt, author of the Leanness Lifestyle. It’s no bull, no hype, real world approach to physique transformation was a big departure from other bodybuilding material I had read. I entered the "Body For Life Challenge", lost another 20 pounds and received honorable mention in the contest.

I became active in the BFL forum on the net and helped others learn what I had discovered. Online, I met BFL champion, Hank Johnson, a Beverly user who convinced me to enter a new transformation challenge. As I prepared my plan for this challenge I remembered how all of my early bodybuilding idols used tons of liver tablets. I stumbled upon Beverly as I did a search for desiccated liver tablets and Vince Gironda. I felt I needed more energy so I added Beverly’s Ultra 40 to my supplement plan along with Muscle Mass BCAAs. The results speak for themselves! I became a national transformation champion in my category over 40.

Although Teri was now a size 2 petite and maintaining comfortably, I was at a turning point. It was very hard for me to "maintain" without a clear cut "WHY". I was finding it difficult to stay focused and started going back to my old habits. David picked up on this, and challenged me to enter a real bodybuilding contest.

I started training for the Mid States Classic at 187 pounds and 13% bodyfat. Since this time I was getting ready for an actual bodybuilding contest I added one more key element - Beverly! I was very impressed with Beverly’s No Nonsense approach and decided to contact them direct. Jeremiah was my Beverly coach. He and was very straight forward, honest, and eager to help. My support group also included Coaching Club members and the great group on the Beverly Discussion board. For you who like all the details I’ve listed my exact training, diet and supplement programs for the show at the end of this article.

Fast forward to the morning of the contest...
  It had been almost four years since I unknowingly started the journey that led me to fulfill my childhood dream. It all started by just wanting to lose a few pounds, yet something inside of me was still unfulfilled until the morning of the Mid States show. When I looked in the mirror I knew in my heart, no matter what the results later that day, I had finally become a bodybuilder!

I can not thank my wonderful wife Teri enough for leading by quiet example, never pushing me but always believing in me and always loving me. I also want to thank David, Jeremiah, the members of the Coaching Club, the group on Beverly’s Discussion Board, and the folks at Beverly! Your willingness to inspire and share your knowledge with others really has made my dream a reality and made a big difference in my life! And I cannot say enough about the Beverly Supplements. When anyone asks me, Beverly is the first on my very short list of supplement companies I recommend without hesitation. The effectiveness of Beverly speaks highly about the quality and research put into each and every product Beverly produces. And the customer service is the very best!

BEVERLY WORKS whether you are doing a physique transformation or competing in a bodybuilding show. For me, the combination of Beverly and The Leanness Lifestyle was the one two punch I needed! Make sure you check out Bev-Soluions for a wealth of information.

Contest Diet and Training Strategy

My base diet consisted of lean meat, poultry, fish, cottage cheese, fruits, and vegetables. I really limited all processed foods and junk food except I did have two "controlled splurge" meals per week. During this "baseline" period my macronutrient ratio was Protein - 30%, Carbs – 50%, and Fat – 20%.

As the contest drew nearer I cut my splurge meals to one a week, then I slowly limited the portion size. Example: let’s say I chose pizza. At 16 weeks out my portion size was four slices; 12 weeks out – 3 slices; 8 weeks out – 2 slices; and 4 weeks out – 1 slice.

My protein ratio also increased each week. At 4 weeks out it was 50–55% Protein, 20–30% Carbs and 15–20% Fat. I ate a variety of foods but this is an example of what I ate at 3 weeks out.

Teri & Tom Roehl
My wife Teri was the spark that lit my fire to make a change. She went from size 14 to a size 2. Then it was my turn.

Meal One:
5 egg whites, 1 whole egg, and ½ grapefruit or 2 Scoops Muscle Provider and 1 Scoop Ultra Size 6 Ultra 40 Liver, 4 Mass Amino, 5 grams Creatine, 5 grams L–Glutamine, 1 tablespoon Udo’s Special Blend, 1 Super Pak

Meal Two:
4 oz. cottage cheese, 1 peach, 1 serving Fiber One or 1 ½ Scoops Muscle Provider and 1 Scoop Ultra Size, 1 serving Fiber One 6 Ultra 40 Liver, 4 Mass Aminos, 2 Lean Out

Meal 3:
6 oz. chicken or 5 oz. tuna, 1 ½ cup mixed steamed vegetables 6 Ultra 40 Liver, 4 Mass Aminos, 2 Lean Out

Meal 4:
1 ½ Scoops Muscle Provider plus 1 Scoop Ultra Size, 4 Strawberries 6 Ultra 40 Liver, 4 Mass Aminos

Meal 5:
4–6 oz. lean beef, 4 oz sweet potato or 1 ½ cups mixed steamed vegetables 6 Ultra 40 Liver, 4 Mass Aminos, 5 grams Creatine, 5 grams L–Glutamine, 2 Lean Out

Workout Supplements

Prior To each workout: 1 Energy Reserve, 2 Lean Out During each weight training session: I take 25 Muscle Mass BCAA’s approximately 5 tablets every five minutes.

Following each session 5 grams of Creatine, 5 grams of Glutamine, 1 Ultra C

Prior to 4 weeks out I used the Online Periodization program that David designed. Here’s how it works: You select your exercises and test for your 10-rep maximums. The program then automatically generates a challenging, progressive 12-week periodized routine for you.

At 4 weeks out I used a training protocol designed around an old Vince Gironda routine called "A Muscle Has 4 Sides." You choose 4 exercises for the same muscle group and do a cycle with 10-20 seconds rest between exercises. It is brutal. Then you wait at least four hours and perform the same routine again later in the day. Each bodypart is trained this way once a week. This program was very effective in bringing out my definition for the show.

Here’s a sample workout for chest and biceps:

Bench Press 1 x 10 - 12
Weighted Dips 1 x 10 - 12
Incline DB Bench 1 x 10 - 12
Cable Flyes 1 x 10 - 12

Rest 3 minutes at the completion of each cycle. Perform 3 cycles total. You may need to decrease your weight 5% or so each set to stay in the 10-12-rep range. Increase the weight for each exercise when you can complete 12 reps on all three sets.

Rest 5 -10 Minutes; then do Biceps
DB Hammer Curl 1 x 10 - 12
Scott Cable Curl 1 x 10 - 12
DB Curl 1 x 10 - 12
Reverse EZ Bar Curl 1 x 10 - 12

Rest 3 Minutes and perform the cycle again for a total of two cycles for biceps.

Shower up, then come back at least four hours later and perform only one cycle for each of the same body parts worked earlier that day. Really focus on the burn in this workout.

Monday: High Intensity Interval Cardio for 12-15 minutes followed by Larry Scott’s Ring Of Fire Ab Workout.

Tuesday: Shoulders

Wednesday: 20 minute Moderate Intensity cardio followed by 8 Minute Ab Routine.

Thursday: 40-60 minute Low Intensity Cardio Followed by 3 sets Of Ab Ball Crunches and 3 sets of Hanging Leg Raises.

Friday: Back/Triceps

Saturday: Legs/Calves

Sunday: Chest/Biceps