I recently competed in the OCB Bodysculpt Open and had a great time! I competed in two classes: the Men’s Novice and Men’s Open, placing first in Novice and second in the Open class! It was a very long day filled with tough posing (literally elbow to elbow - the stage was small and my class was big!), but the final moments on stage made it all worthwhile! The judges were tough and called every mandatory pose from both sides, as well as all the more obscure poses like Hamstring Flex and Double Calf Spike - it's always fun to try balancing on your toes while coasted in oil and staring into bright lights up on a stage in front of hundreds of people! I had lots of friends come out to root for me, tons of online support from the vegan fitness community (thanks so much guys!) and my 8 months pregnant wife Marcella was there by my side for all 14 hours – a guy couldn’t ask for better support! I am repeatedly surprised and humbled by the respect and support provided by the vegan community, it's really one of the major things that keeps me striving to go farther and do more.
The event was held in the Hampton convention Center here in Virginia, and the bodybuilding contest was one of 20 sports (including mixed martial arts, powerlifting, and crossfit) being held under the same roof at the same time. It was an awesome experience getting to compete right next to such a diverse group of athletes, and in front of a huge convention center packed with people, but I may not do a mixed venue like this again in the future. The crowds were so big and loud it was hard to hear the judges call poses, and the lighting was not as good as what you normally have when you compete in a theater. it was still a great experience, there was a lot to do between the times I needed to be onstage, and I got to see behind the scenes of some sports I'm not familiar with!
I always make sure to wear plenty of Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness apparel backstage, and I got lots of
questions and surprisingly positive feedback. Whereas at my previous two contests people reacted with
complete shock, at this show there were a lot of people telling me about their vegan/vegetarian friends
who work out, or just telling me that it was awesome that I compete. It feels like word is spreading!!
As for my placing, I spoke with the judges once the contest was over and they said my proportions were excellent and my main focus should be on improving my lower body definition – a big step up from my show last July when the judges said I needed bigger arms and legs! 6 months of hard work in the gym paid off! I couldn’t have done it without all the very heavy training (especially squats) – which I couldn’t have done without chiropractic treatments, especially Graston and Active Release techniques, that kept my injuries at bay! If you've never tried these treatments I now swear by them!
Now I'm heading back to the gym to work on the still elusive 200lb bodyweight, and I don't plan to compete again until most likely the Fall of this year. Stay tuned for my next appearance on stage!