Road less traveled: Bodybuilder decides on taking alternative path – Iron Mountain Daily News

Iron Mountain graduate and bodybuilder Evan Geronimi, who now weighs around 160 pounds at 5-foot-10, has competed twice in the Men’s Physique category. He took second in a small show in Green Bay in 2020 and then won the Novice Class at a bigger event in Minnesota (pictured above) in his second attempt. (Courtesy photo)

IRON MOUNTAIN — In high school, Evan Geronimi wasn’t all that different from many prep athletes.

Geronimi competed in a few different sports — in his case it was football, basketball and track — and did the accompanying weightlifting and aerobic training that was assigned.

And, after the 2018 graduate of Iron Mountain High School matriculated to Michigan Technological University, Geronimi stayed on the well-trodden path. He adjusted to collegiate-level study, acclimated to living away from home with the accompanying freedoms and lived for the weekend.

But Geronimi quickly tired of that path. Starting in his sophomore year in 2019, Geronimi changed his life habits.

“In my freshman year, I met a group of kids … that are really good friends now and we got together and that’s how we spent our weekends,” the 22-year old said. “But then after that, it didn’t really interest me anymore.”

Then one day, cliched as it sounds, Geronimi looked in the mirror and didn’t like what he saw. He stopped “partying and stuff like that” and made a decision to transform his lifestyle. He began to learn about the importance of proper diet, rest and stress management and began weight-training in earnest.

He had decided to become a bodybuilder.

“It was really me diving into Google and YouTube and forums like and websites like that,” said Geronimi, who is about to begin his fifth and final year at Tech en route to earning a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. “Stuff that really interested me more than just going in (the gym) and lifting as heavy as I could.

“My freshman year I was just in the gym, in and out, and then my sophomore year was when I really put it all together. I started eating right and sleeping right, and that’s what really pushed me into, just a goal. And bodybuilding just seemed like the best fit for me.”

The decision to make such a change and the reality of doing so are a gulf apart. But Geronimi adapted to the strict regimen of weighing foods, eating the proper amounts of protein, carbs and fat and extensive weight-training and exercise.

Geronimi said his daily diet now consists of about 2,900 calories, which includes 210 grams of protein, 350 grams of carbohydrates and 98 grams of fat.

He said that weighing his food – an extreme exercise in patience for many — has become second nature to him.

“It’s become weird for me not to weigh food now.”

Geronomi said he limits his sugar intake to about 40 grams per day, only occasionally giving himself a treat like French toast with dark chocolate on top.

An example of his diet includes a breakfast wrap with egg whites and vegetables, a lunch of rice combined with lean beef or turkey, a pre-workout snack of a wrap with vegetables, a post-workout snack of rice cake, oatmeal or cream or rice with protein powder and fruit and then a final meal of a “really big” salad with vegetables and meats.

He begins each day with an immediate intake of water to start his metabolism. But to show that Geronimi is still like most of us, he is not above a cup or two of coffee.

“I do that, too,” he said laughing. “Water then coffee.”

But does he miss an evening of burgers and beers?

“Sometimes I miss it, like being able to go out and eat whatever. But then there would be no point in doing any of this.”

Geronimi’s lifestyle change has also given him the opportunity to compete again, this time as a “natural bodybuilder.” Natural because competitors train without using steroids.

Geronimi said initially the temptation to partake in steroid use was strong, but he knew a healthy lifestyle does not include using such substances.

Along with the healthy living habits, Geronimi weight-trains extensively. He trains in the afternoon, after he finishes his course work and classes in the morning. He said he varies between a pull session (back, shoulders and biceps) and a push session (chest, shoulders and triceps).

Geronimi also works on his legs, and then does an arm-specific workout, which also varies by muscle group. He finishes his session with 15-20 minutes on the treadmill, and on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays he adds abdominal training.

Geronimi said the whole workout takes between 2 and 2.5 hours.

If all this sounds a bit obsessive, Geronimi doesn’t argue.

“Very much so,” he said. “But to compete in a show, and if you want to place in a show, you pretty much have to. It consumes a lot of your time.”

Geronimi, who presently weighs around 160 pounds at 5-foot-10, has competed twice now, in the Men’s Physique category. He took second in a small show in Green Bay in 2020 and then won the Novice Class at a bigger event in Minnesota in his second attempt.

Pursuing bodybuilding has also allowed Geronimi an outlet for his competitiveness, which had been in hibernation since high school.

“I think that’s one of the reasons I did it because I didn’t play any sports in college and there wasn’t really anything that I had to compete in. I missed it, and then I fell in love with health and lifting and it kind of just tied in pretty well.”

Now in his fourth year of bodybuilding, Geronimi’s next show is scheduled for April 8, 2023 in Bloomington, Minnesota. His aim is to finish first overall in that show so he can obtain a pro card and move up from amateur status.

“And then hopefully I can take it as far as I can,” he added.

In the meantime, Geronimi’s emphasis on health, training and bodybuilding has already offered many lessons, one of which he has already handed down to his younger brother Ayden and others in high school.

“Don’t mess with drugs (like steroids). I tell my brother never to do that. I had that temptation, too, when I started because you recover a lot better and it helps your muscles get bigger over time. But I focus on my health and that’s just completely the opposite.”

Jerry DeRoche can be reached at 906-774-2772, ext. 247, or at

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Maggie Valley police officer wins bodybuilding competition | Sports | – The Mountaineer

Maggie Valley police officer Logan Wood, 33, won a bodybuilding competition in June in Wilmington.

It was Wood’s first body building competition, and he won best in his weight class (191 pounds), overall classic physique and true novice.

“I trusted my coach, followed his plan and the process going into my first competition,” Wood said. “I think it went perfect for the both of us.”

Wood’s coach, Tom DeFloria, is a three-time professional international federal bodybuilder. DeFlorida has been coaching for 10 years and took on Wood as a student about a year ago.

Wood is a Waynesville native and a graduate of Enka High School. After high school, he worked as an electrician but later became a police officer.

Now, he serves as a member on the SWAT and K-9 units for the Maggie Valley Police Department.

Wood and his wife, Oxana, have four children, but that didn’t stop her from joining him at the competition to cheer him on.

“My wife is looking into body building as well. She wants to do her first competition,” said Wood.

Bodybuilding is a sport that isn’t for the weak. Wood said it takes time and preparation.

A competitor’s body has to be the healthiest during training and conditioning for the 12 hours before competition. Competitor’s bodies face a high level of dehydration and carb-loading before reaching the stage.

“I weighed in at 191,” Wood said. “It’s been a couple weeks and I’ve already gained 35 pounds back.”

Throughout the training months, Wood has to maintain a strict diet, which he described as a constant state of starving. That includes drinking three gallons of water and doing one-and-a-half hours of cardio before he begins his lift session.

Working on the SWAT team and K-9 unit, Wood needs to be in shape for the job.

Even before working with the police department, he’s always been interested in lifting and has liked working out. His favorite lifts are incline bench press and deadlift.

Working full-time at the police department, a father of four and, now, a competitive bodybuilder, Wood’s schedule is very strict. He works all-night shifts and trains and enjoys family time during the day.

Wood has lifted everyday since joining the SWAT team, saying that it feels weird when he misses a day. Even going back to eating regular has been hard on him.

“It was very rewarding. I put in a lot of hard work for that single competition and put my body through a lot. I probably won’t do another for another year, and I might do the same one again in Wilmington,” said Wood. “It taught me a lot about perseverance and mental toughness. This first competition and year were meant to be trial and error.”

Samson Dauda Shares His Bodybuilding Origin Story – Muscle & Fitness

Bodybuilding has become a global sport. When you watch the Olympia, there are many nations from around the world represented by the athletes in all 11 pro divisions. One example is the “Nigerian Lion” Samson Dauda. He lives in the United Kingdom now, but he is from Nigeria originally. He told Isabelle Turell on the Fit Rockstar Show that he actually had no awareness or knowledge of it when he decided to compete for the first time.

“I was playing rugby for the town I was living in at the time, and the guys I was in the changing room with would say ‘wow, you have a great physique on you. Have you ever thought about competing?’” Dauda recalled. “I was like, ‘what are you talking about?’”

After numerous suggestions from a variety of people, Dauda spoke to local gym owner Chris Jones about it. After Jones explained the prep process, Dauda opted not to pursue it at that time. Then, he saw the 2013 Mr. Olympia contest, which was won by Phil Heath.

“I was just blown away by it. I was like oh my god,” Dauda told Turell. “It just kind of caught me at that point, and I was like ‘ok, you know what? I want to do this.’”

His first show came in April of 2014, and he told the host that it was a big event for his town. Dauda competed in the beginner competition early in the day. It took him several minutes to undress and take the stage. Once he did, it didn’t take him long to feel at home.

“It just felt so natural to be on there, you know,” said Dauda. After winning the show he originally entered, the promoter invited him to compete with the main class of that show. Dauda agreed, even though he had doubts of success.

“One of the promoters came to me and said ‘I think you can win this class.’ I was like ‘are you out of your mind?’”

The promoter wasn’t out of his mind, and he was correct in his assessment. Dauda won that contest, and the rest would be history. Dauda is now viewed as a possible Mr. Olympia contender, and his fanbase is growing by the day. Dauda shared more about his story and career so far in the sport in this episode. You can see this and all episodes of the Fit Rockstar Show by going to

Every Winner of the Chicago Pro Bodybuilding Show – BarBend

Bodybuilding fans and followers know that the two biggest titles in the sport are the Mr. Olympia and the Arnold Classic. After that, there are a series of titles that rising competitors hope to win to put their name on the proverbial map. Examples of these shows are the New York Pro, the Arnold South America, and the Tampa Pro

Another title on the radar of many competitors is the Chicago Pro. The show has an inconsistent history in the 20th century, but it has been an annual showcase since 2012. The  Men’s Open winners of this contest will be familiar names to many people. Below is every winner of the Chicago Pro bodybuilding show:

Chicago Pro Bodybuilding Show Winners

There are ten champions of this contest going back to 1988. There was an 18-year gap in between, but only three men have won multiple titles so far in its history. One of these winners went on to become an Arnold Classic champion while two more are established names of the 2020s.

[Related: Watch The Stoltman Brothers Train With Bodybuilder Nathan De Asha]

1988: Phil Williams

In 1988, Lee Haney dominated the sport as Mr. Olympia to become a mainstream star. Because of that, many competitors in that era sought to make a name for themselves. The inaugural Chicago Pro featured many of Haney’s competitors of that year, including the legendary Albert Beckles, Gary Strydom, Bob Paris, and even current renowned trainer Charles Glass.

However, Phil Williams was crowned as the first Chicago Pro champion — the only pro win of his career.

  1. Phil Williams
  2. Gary Strydom
  3. John Hnatyschak
  4. Albert Beckles
  5. Bob Paris
  6. Lance Dreher
  7. Ronald Matz
  8. Dan Smith
  9. Hayritten Dinger
  10. Paul Jean-Guillaume
  11. J.J. Marsh
  12. Charles Glass
  13. Bill Grant
  14. Ron Teufel
  15. Luis Freitas

Williams never took to the Olympia stage. Williams retired in 1996 after placing 15th at that year’s San Jose Pro Invitational.

1992-1993: Porter Cottrell

After a four-year gap, professional bodybuilding returned to Chicago in 1992, and it was well-received by the fans. The second rendition of the Chicago Pro would be led by two-time champion Porter Cottrell, who won both the 1992 and 1993 titles.

1992 Chicago Pro

  1. Porter Cottrell
  2. Thierry Pastel
  3. Kevin Levrone
  4. Henderson Thorne
  5. Milos Sarcev
  6. Kevin McGaunn
  7. Mauro Sarni
  8. Ray McNeil
  9. Flavio Baccianini
  10. Bob Paris
  11. Ronnie Coleman
  12. Darrem Charles
  13. Patrick Lynn
  14. Allan Ichinose
  15. J.J. Marsh

1993 Chicago Pro

  1. Porter Cottrell
  2. John Sherman
  3. Milos Sarcev
  4. Mauro Sarni
  5. Henderson Thorne
  6. Ronnie Coleman
  7. Jim Quinn
  8. Chris Duffy
  9. Joe Spinello
  10. Kevin McGaunn
  11. Thierry Pastel
  12. Thomas Varga
  13. Jason Marcovici
  14. Tony Pearson (tie for 13th)
  15. Vernon Gauthier

Like Williams, Chicago was his first pro victory. Unlike Williams, Cottrell went on to win five shows during his career, and he competed at the Olympia twice. His best placing came in 1994 — finishing fifth. Cottrell retired in 1999.

1994: Mike Francois

The 1994 Chicago Pro featured two past Arnold Classic champions and a future Arnold winner. 1989 Arnold winner Rich Gaspari and 1990 winner Mike Ashley hoped to secure a victory in the Windy City, but it was not meant to be. Gaspari finished outside the top 15, while Ashley placed 10th. The champion was Mike Francois, who also won the Night of Champions that same year. 

  1. Mike Francois
  2. John Sherman
  3. Alq Gurley
  4. Nikolai Yasinovsky
  5. Darryl Stafford
  6. Jason Marcovici
  7. Juan Marquez
  8. Ian Harrison
  9. Joe Spinello
  10. Mike Ashley
  11. Kevin McGaunn
  12. Jim Quinn
  13. Thomas Vargo
  14. Sammy Ioannidis
  15. Bob Weatherhill

Francois went go on to win the Arnold in Columbus, OH, in 1995.

2012: Essa Obaid

The Chicago Pro was absent from the pro bodybuilding calendar for 18 years following the 1994 show. It made it’s return in 2012, and nine men competed to become a part of bodybuilding history. Essa Obaid of the United Arab Emirates claimed the win.

  1. Essa Obaid
  2. Fred Smalls
  3. An Nguyen
  4. Grigori Atoyan
  5. Adorthus Cherry
  6. Manuel Lomeli
  7. Erik Fankhouser
  8. Valentine Jabes
  9. Alexandre Nataf

This is the only win of Obaid’s career thus far. As of 2022, he was still an active competitor.

2013-2014: Roelly Winklaar

Obaid hoped to defend his title, but 2009 Arnold Amateur winner Roelly Winklaar made quite a name for himself as the 2013 season came around. Known for his tremendous arm development, Winklaar was considered a future Mr. Olympia contender.

Those who felt as such may have considered Winklaar’s back-to-back victories at the Chicago Pro as validation. He dominated the stage in both 2013 and 2014 and placed third at the Olympia in 2018. Of course, Winklaar has not yet won the grandest title in the sport but has racked up 11 pro victories as of 2022. 

2013 Chicago Pro

  1. Roelly Winklaar
  2. Lionel Beyeke
  3. Bill Wilmore
  4. Essa Obaid
  5. Justin Compton
  6. Lee Banks
  7. Stefan Havlik
  8. Keith Williams
  9. Constantine Demetrious
  10. Jeff Beckham
  11. Craig Richardson
  12. Jonathan Rowe
  13. Ken Jackson
  14. Mike Liberatore
  15. Jojo Ntiforo

2014 Chicago Pro

  1. Roelly Winklaar
  2. Jojo Ntiforo
  3. Essa Obaid
  4. An Nguyen
  5. Akim Williams
  6. Marshel Herman
  7. Jonathan Rowe
  8. Dan Decker
  9. Constantine Demetrious
  10. Bill Wilmore
  11. Maor Zaradez
  12. Keith Williams
  13. Timothy Gallard
  14. Eboni Wilson
  15. Brian Yersky

[Related: Chris Duffin Shares His Survivor Mentality and How To Build Resiliency]

2015: Jon Delarosa

The Chicago Pro lineup in 2015 presented established pros and young blood clamoring for the crown. Many insiders predicted that Akim Williams would stand atop the podium, but Jon Delarosa showed up in his best condition ever up to that point. Upstart Michael Lockettt shocked the field, finishing as the runner-up. Williams took third.

  1. Jon Delarosa
  2. Michael Lockett
  3. Akim Williams
  4. Kevin Jordan
  5. Renaldo Hairy
  6. Brad Rowe
  7. Jeff Long
  8. Marshel Herman
  9. Mike Dragna
  10. Timothy Gaillard
  11. Keith Williams
  12. Brad Adams
  13. Eboni Wilson
  14. Michael Ely

2016: Dallas McCarver

Dallas McCarver’s size and charisma captured the hearts of many fans around the world. His immense strength was compared to the great Ronnie Coleman, and there were hopes that he would rack off a string of Olympia wins for himself in the years to come.

The 2016 Chicago Pro was McCarver’s second pro win and there was little doubt that he owned the stage at that contest. Lockett ranked as the runner-up for the second straight year. Unfortunately, the potential that so many had seen in McCarver was left unfulfilled due to his passing in 2017 at the age of 26.

  1. Dallas McCarver
  2. Michael Lockett
  3. Brandon Curry
  4. Johnnie Jackson
  5. Sasan Heirati
  6. Akim Williams
  7. Andrew Hudson
  8. Fred Smalls
  9. Rafael Jaramillo
  10. Paulo Almeida
  11. Timmy Gallard
  12. Ken Jackson
  13. Eddie Bracamontes
  14. Zdenek Voprada

2017-2019: Michael Lockett

After two second-place finishes in the previous two years, Lockett finally claimed his first Chicago Pro title in 2017. There must be something about Michael’s in Chicago — Michael Jordan three-peated with the Chicago Bulls twice and took six NBA championships. Michael Lockett performed his own three-peat by defending the Chicago Pro title in 2018 and going back-to-back-to-back in 2019. He would only win one pro show outside of Illinois — the 2016 Vancouver Pro.

2017 Chicago Pro

  1. Michael Lockett
  2. Luis Rodriguez
  3. Kevin Jordan
  4. Charles Griffen
  5. Regan Grimes
  6. Josh Wade
  7. Henri Pierre Ano
  8. Fred Smalls
  9. Paulo Almeida
  10. Marc Arthur Dautruchee
  11. Lloyd Dollar
  12. Tomas Kaspar
  13. Dusty Hanshaw
  14. Grigori Atoyan
  15. Eddie Bracamontes

2018 Chicago Pro

  1. Michael Lockett
  2. Sergio Oliva Jr.
  3. Justin Rodriguez
  4. Sergey Kulaev
  5. Brad Rowe
  6. Kevin Jordan
  7. Keith Williams
  8. Matt Kouba
  9. Seth Shaw
  10. Jon Delarosa
  11. James Culbertson
  12. Derek Upshaw
  13. Lionel Brown
  14. Marc Arthur Dautruchee
  15. Igor Gostiunin

2019 Chicago Pro

  1. Michael Lockett
  2. Charles Griffen
  3. Essa Obaid
  4. Lucas Osladil
  5. An Nguyen
  6. Sergey Kulaev
  7. Samson Dauda
  8. Josh Wade
  9. Sibusiso Kotelo
  10. Slavoj Bednar
  11. Dorian Haywood
  12. Eddie Bracamontes
  13. Justin Rodriguez
  14. Marc Arthur Dautruchee
  15. Julio Cesar Balestrin Freitas

2020: Akim Williams

The COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns began in March 2020, and many contests were canceled as a result. The Chicago Pro remained but was held in Atlanta, GA, due to Illinois safety restrictions. Several veterans competed with hopes of qualifying for the Olympia, which had been moved to Orlando, FL.

Akim Williams was the last man standing. He carried that momentum into Orlando to a sixth-place finish at the Olympia — his highest placing to date.

  1. Akim Williams
  2. Justin Rodriguez
  3. Maxx Charles
  4. Nick Walker
  5. Eddie Bracamontes
  6. An Nguyen
  7. Mohamed Shaaban
  8. Phil Clahar
  9. Camilo Garzon
  10. Josh Wade
  11. Mohammed El-Emam
  12. Joe Seeman
  13. Shawn Smith
  14. Johnnie Jackson
  15. Ken Jackson

2021: Hunter Labrada

The 2021 Chicago Pro was also held in Atlanta in 2021 due to COVID restrictions. Ten men jumped into the show to attempt to snag the Olympia qualification that came with the win. Many felt that Winklaar would claim victory over upstart Labrada, but Labrada showed superb definition and outlasted the man from Curacao. Labrada went on to finish fourth at the 2021 Olympia.

  1. Hunter Labrada
  2. Brett Wilkin
  3. Maxx Charles
  4. Mohamed Shaaban
  5. Roelly Winklaar
  6. Hassan Mostafa
  7. Zack Merkel
  8. Justin Maki
  9. Matt Kouba
  10. Slavoj Bednar

2022 Chicago Pro Winner?

After two years in A-Town, the Chicago Pro will return to Illinois in 2022. The contest is scheduled to take place on the weekend of July 22-23, 2022 in Tinley Park, IL. As of this writing, the rosters have not been released, but if the past contests are any indication, we may see another competitor score their first victory and add their names to the list of Chicago Pro winners.

Featured Images: @roellywinklaar, @hunterlabrada on Instagram

Joe Rogan Rubbishes the Notion Arnold Schwarzenegger “Couldn’t Compete With Today’s Bodybuilders” – EssentiallySports

Some fans of bodybuilding have an opinion that Arnold Schwarzenegger couldn’t compete with the bodybuilders of today. However, veteran UFC color commentator Joe Rogan denies this. In a recent episode of his globally popular podcast, Rogan was of the opinion that Schwarzenegger looked better than most bodybuilders of these days.


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In episode #1841 of The Joe Rogan Experience, Rogan was in conversation with stand-up comedian Brian Redban. While looking at a picture of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rogan said, “If you look back at like Arnold, look at that picture of Arnold up there. They say that he couldn’t compete with today’s bodybuilders. But honestly, I think that looks better.


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The veteran color commentator further added, “He looks f*****g fantastic… He looks like a super-strong giant man.” Pointing towards a photo of Schwarzenegger doing the double bicep pose, Rogan said, “He looks f*****g fantastic. I mean, obviously, he’s a bodybuilder. No question about it. But I think that’s like a healthier look, a better look for a bodybuilder.”


Why is Joe Rogan So Important to the UFC?

about 2 years ago

Joe Rogan’s admiration for Arnold Schwarzenegger is heartwarming to see. However, the UFC commentator did not stop here. He also reacted to another legend in bodybuilding.

Joe Rogan reacts to Ronnie Coleman

Ronnie Coleman is arguably the greatest bodybuilder to live. Coleman, in his bodybuilding career, won eight Mr. Olympia titles. And Joe Rogan was clearly appreciative of Coleman.


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Looking at a photo of Coleman, Rogan was astonished and appreciative of Coleman’s size. The podcast host said, “Look at the size. When he was in his prime, he was f*****g gigantic. Just mass.”

Rogan also spoke about how Coleman injured his back because of lifting heavy weights. Rogan said, “Ronnie Coleman was known for lifting really, really, heavy weights, which is how he wound up injuring his back, He had like every disc in his back fused.

Watch This Story: UFC Schedule For July 2022


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Ronnie Coleman has appeared on Joe Rogan’s podcast. On the podcast, the duo spoke about bodybuilding, Coleman’s career, and many other things. Both Coleman and Rogan seemed to have a great time doing the podcast.

Do you think Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime would compete with bodybuilders of today? Comment below and let us know your valuable opinion.

2022 Mr. Big Evolution Pro Bodybuilding Show Preview – BarBend

The 2022 Mr. Big Evolution Pro is scheduled for Saturday, July 9, 2022 in Estoril, Portugal. Ten of the IFBB Pro League’s 11 divisions will hold contests to determine who qualifies for the 2022 Olympia, scheduled for Dec. 16-18, 2022 in Las Vegas, NV. The only division that is not represented is the Wheelchair division.

The headline division at this show is the Men’s Open. Thirteen bodybuilders will take the stage. The roster for that contest is below in alphabetical order:

2022 Mr. Big Evolution Bodybuilding Roster | Men’s Open

  • Morgan Aste
  • Tim Budesheim
  • Roberto Buonomo
  • Peter Klancir
  • Sergio Lima
  • Pablo Llopis Munoz
  • Andrea Muzi
  • Cem Nazim
  • Andrea Presti — Reigning Champion
  • Fabio Romagnolo
  • Sarham Sarhan
  • Vladyslav Sukhoruchko
  • Antonio Valero Tuinenburg

[Related: Dana Linn Bailey and Regan Grimes Build Their Lats at the Mecca of Bodybuilding]

Favorites to Watch

Below are three athletes who could make waves in Portugal when they step on stage.

Andrea Presti

Presti is the defending champion at this contest. That victory in 2021 was his first pro win and the only pro victory thus far in his pro career. He’s competed three times in 2022 — scoring a pair of second-place finishes in the New York Pro and Orlando Pro, and a seventh-place rank at the California State Pro.

The Orlando contest was less than one week before the show in Portugal. If he can maintain his conditioning while traveling overseas, he will be in position to go back-to-back.

Tim Budesheim

Budesheim was the runner-up to Presti in 2021. That contest was when many fans became aware of Budeshiem for the first time. This will be his first competition in 2022, so he may come back bigger and better.

The matchup between Budesheim and Presti will be an interesting one. Budesheim’s proportions are good, and his overall symmetry makes his physique stand out. If the German can get rid of the water beneath his skin to reveal maximum definition, he stands a good chance of winning this show.

Andrea Muzi

Muzi placed fourth at the California Pro in May 2022. The fifth-year pro from Italy is still hunting for his first pro win and an Olympia debut.

Muzi appeared bigger than years past when he competed in San Diego, CA. He will need to be shredded to have a chance to win this show. He’s certainly capable of that, and the other contenders shouldn’t sleep on him.

[Related: Watch Bodybuilder Brett Wilkin Conquer a Heavy Back Training Session]

Other Divisions

The athlete rosters for the other nine divisions are below. In total, over 140 IFBB Pros will represent 35 different countries, making this a significant international contest. All winners move on to the Olympia while top five finishers will earn Tier 4 points towards the Olympia Qualification System. The top three finishers in that system at the end of the season will also move on to the Olympia.


  • Steve Benthin
  • Andrea Bolzoni
  • Marco Cardona
  • Raphael Chevailler
  • Pasquale D’Angelo
  • Hameed Juna
  • Michael Schneider
  • Daniel Sticco

Classic Physique

  • Oman Naser Alden
  • Keivan Alichi
  • Aldin Alijagic
  • Julio Cesar Almiento
  • Nestor Martinez Carbonell
  • Julian Castano
  • Pedro Miguel da Silva Ferreira
  • Ethan Gohari
  • Issa Al Hasani
  • Paulo Henrique
  • Philipp Jendreiek
  • Mohammad Mahmoudi
  • Luis Garcia Martinez
  • Fabian Mayr
  • Giovanni Randazzo
  • Marco Ruz
  • Norbert Zakar-Balogh

Men’s Physique

  • Mahmut Alan
  • Welington Rodrigo de Souza Barbosa
  • Anthony Bessala
  • Ali Bilal
  • Daniele D’Onofrio
  • Furkan Er
  • Febo Gambacorta
  • Ali Jaffar
  • Burak King
  • Damian Kujtkowski
  • Benedikt Lukas
  • Ruben Marques
  • Filipe Martins
  • Elton Mota
  • Paulo Nunes
  • Manoj Patil
  • Abisai Pietersz
  • Jessy Pigury
  • Sidy Pouye
  • Kenny Privet
  • Nelson Rodrigues
  • Manuel Santalucia
  • Tristan Van der Bijl
  • Leonardo Vecchiato
  • Dawid Wachelka

Women’s Bodybuilding

  • Alcione Barreto
  • Claudia Mocciaro
  • Branka Njegovec
  • Yesenia Garcia Speck

Women’s Physique

  • Birgit Andersch
  • Ilaria Armeni
  • Lena Frenkel
  • Amandine Kolly
  • Barbara Menage
  • Manuella Monteiro
  • Sanna Nupponen
  • Alida Opre
  • Paloma Parra
  • Elena Aviles Romero
  • Caroline Alves dos Santos
  • Marina Schermer


  • Corrine Elizabeth Bean
  • Alix Small


  • Alessia Amore
  • Ayra Bahar
  • Oyku Basar
  • Pamela Colombo
  • Rahel Cucchia
  • Glynis Van Drunen
  • Manon Dutilly
  • Ashley Felperin
  • Nadine Claudia Huber
  • Sara Kinnvik
  • Gabriela Linhartova
  • Adela Ondreyovicova
  • Carmen Penalvar
  • Hannah Prause
  • Lena Ramsteiner
  • Paula Ranta
  • Sophia Sammee
  • Roberta Visintainer


  • Giuss Abbate
  • Anastasia Gonzalez Andreu
  • Jasmi Aprile
  • Cheila Baronet
  • Solidea Bellia
  • Debora Boff
  • Kristina Brunauer
  • Claudia Clemente
  • Noemi Cosentino
  • Martyna Derlat
  • Lucy Edwards
  • Ivanna Escandar
  • Liana Giannamore
  • Stine Hansen
  • Cassie Hunter
  • Noemi Lavacca
  • Lucrezia Marchi
  • Chloe Margraitner
  • Eszter Oczella
  • Rosario Asala Orihuela
  • Camilla Porfito
  • Lisa Reith
  • Jule Schwabe
  • Anna Setlak
  • Rukiye Solak
  • Eleonora Sundas
  • Giuditta Taccani


  • Sandra Colorado Acal
  • Lauren Barton
  • Jessica Basso
  • Leonida Ciobu
  • Daniela Deiana
  • Tracy Eden
  • Maria Gongora
  • Houda Hmini
  • Anzhelika Ispodnikova
  • Carina Marques
  • Lisa Meiswinkel
  • Catia Moreira
  • Debora Paula de Oliveira
  • Pernille Mindahl Ramussen
  • Synara Santana
  • Catarina de Sousa
  • Nerilda Garcia Strey
  • Carly Thornton
  • Simara Walter

Featured image: @andrea.presti_ifbbpro on Instagram 

Bodybuilding Federation names 10-member CAC team – Antigua Observer

3 body
The Antigua and Barbuda Amateur Bodybuilding and Weightlifting Federation named a nine-member team for the CAC Championships

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The Antigua and Barbuda Amateur Bodybuilding and Weightlifting Federation (ABABWF) has named a nine-member team to fly the country’s flag at this year’s Central American & Caribbean (CAC) Championships slated for later this month in Barbados.

National bikini fitness champion, Makiva Elvin, headlines the selections with Dwayne George and Steve Simon both set to compete in the bodybuilding division. Brad Benjamin (men’s physique), Duncan Corbin (men’s physique), Jameel Knight (classic) Yvette Butler (bikini), Kayla Joseph (wellness) and Shaquille Thomas (classic), round off the selections.

The CAC championships will also include a major professional event open for Bodybuilding, Classic Bodybuilding, Men’s Physique, Bikini, Wellness, Women’s Physique and Women’s Figure.

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Y3T Training Explained — Is Coach Neil Hill’s Bodybuilding Workout Muscle Magic? – BarBend

Size matters not…except for when it does. Y3T, or “Yoda-3-Training”, is the brainchild of renowned bodybuilding coach Neil “Yoda” Hill. Hill — whose coaching pedigree contains names like Flex Lewis, William Bonac, and Zach Khan — developed Y3T as a means of growing serious amounts of muscle through brutish workouts centered around high repetition counts.

You may already know about Y3T, whether it was passed along to you by your workout partner or having stumbled upon it by mere chance. Either way, before you dive into any pre-written plan, you should be armed with the knowledge to succeed at it.

torso musculature
Credit: ALL best fitness is HERE / Shutterstock

Is Hill a wizard in the weight room, or is Y3T more madness than genius? Here’s the skinny on how Y3T could help get you jacked

What Is Y3T Training?

There are plenty of unverified templates floating around online that claim the Y3T name. However, you can only be sure you’re getting the tried-and-true version from the man himself. In a promotional article for Muscle and Fitness, Hill laid out how he designed Y3T and what, in his mind, makes it so successful.

Y3T is a nine-week training plan broken up into a trio of three-week microcycles. As you work through each of the three weeks, your focus in the gym shifts from low-rep compound lifting to high-rep isolation work.

  • Week 1 contains mostly compound exercises performed with heavy weights and low reps.
  • Week 2 is a mix of heavy compound training and some supplemental high-rep isolation work.
  • Week 3 is almost exclusively isolation work and very high-rep, extended sets. 

Make no mistake — when Hill says high repetitions, he means it. Y3T has you take multiple sets and exercises well beyond the 20-rep mark during its third week, ensuring that your muscles are burnt to a crisp by the end of each session. 

What the Science Says

In Hill’s words, the magic of Y3T largely involves inducing large amounts of sarcoplasmic hypertrophy. For the uninitiated, hypertrophy — the biological process that generates muscle growth — is generally considered to have two distinct components.

Myofibrillar hypertrophy is the result of your actual muscle fibers thickening as a response to external resistance. Conversely, sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is a phenomenon wherein the sarcoplasm (the fluid that fills the space within a sheath of muscle) swells and volumizes. 

Hill notes that Y3T will bring about visual changes within a few weeks. However, much of what he conflates as legitimate muscle gain may be the result of localized and transient edema. Temporary muscular swelling is a common byproduct of intense resistance training, especially in new trainees. (1)

Further, Hill also endorses Y3T’s ability to induce growth by encouraging high amounts of glycogen to exist within muscle tissue, helping it to look more swollen and full. However, most research supposes that, even under extreme clinical conditions, high glycogen concentrations are temporary at best. (2)

However, a 2020 narrative review on the matter did acknowledge that sarcoplasmic hypertrophy may be possible in humans as a result of resistance training. The researchers noted that much more data is needed before it can be convincingly argued as something worth pursuing. (3)

So, does Y3T have the backing of the scientific community at large? Not exactly. Is Hill’s real-world industry expertise and decades of bodybuilding experience at the highest levels still worth something? It sure is.  

Who Should Try Y3T Training

Y3T probably isn’t the best choice for every single gymgoer on planet Earth. Still, Hill’s pain-inducing training style is popular in the ranks of serious bodybuilders the world over. You don’t have to own posing trunks or a pro card to give it a whirl, though. 

Intermediate to Advanced Bodybuilders

Dedicated physique enthusiasts are among the best candidates for Y3T training. As a bodybuilding coach (and former competitor before a knee injury forced him to find a way to gain muscle without lifting heavy all the time), Hill’s approach to resistance training centers entirely on adding muscle

Y3T’s overall design reflects that goal. A mix of heavy and light “pump work”, exercises pushed to their limit, and heaps of targeted isolation work all make Y3T a solid choice for muscle-minded gymgoers

Note, though, that the sheer intensity of the program makes it somewhat inaccessible for beginners. When you’re just starting out, you’ve no reason to rely on intricate training styles or complex programs. You also might not be able to tango with the rigors of the work in a safe manner. 

Those Looking For a Change

If you’ve got a few years of training experience under your belt, there’s no harm in giving Y3T a go, especially if one of your main goals in the gym is hypertrophy. 

Hill’s approach to periodization isn’t groundbreaking. Plenty of popular programs begin by developing one quality or focusing on one area and shift toward different set or rep schemes later on. However, Y3T takes the concept of “high reps” about as far as it can go. For that alone, it earns points as a breath of fresh air in the gym


Going to the gym isn’t about beating yourself to a pulp for its own sake. However, there’s something to be said for gritting your teeth and buckling down on a program that promises to make you question how tough you really are

Since there are more ways to test your physical limits than seeing how much weight you can lift for one rep, you might consider giving Y3T a go if only as a barometer of your pain tolerance.

man performs t-bar row
Credit: Fotokvadrat / Shutterstock

Hill promises that the culmination of each microcycle will be excruciating. There’s no shame in wanting to rise to that challenge, simply to see if you can

Nutrition for Y3T Training

As with any good bodybuilding program, you can’t expect to harvest the gains of Y3T if you slack off in the kitchen. Proper nutrition is key for all gymgoers, physique-oriented or otherwise. If you’re running Y3T specifically, you should have a specific game plan from the get-go. 


Hill says that you should have had at least one full meal in your belly before embarking on a Y3T workout. This is likely of higher importance during Week 2 and 3 in particular, when the extremely high number of repetitions will require you to be well-fueled before you start.


Any heavy or intense training session might call for some mid-workout nutrition. If you’re working with extremely long sets of high repetitions, you have even more of a reason to get some intra-set calories in.

Although Hill notes that you should keep your rest times short during Y3T, you’ll probably still have enough time to sip on a sugary drink or eat a meal replacement bar that can inject some much-needed carbohydrates to fuel your next few sets. That said, it’s not mandatory. 


Your approach to post-workout nutrition is the same under Y3T as any other training plan. To maximize your recovery potential, you need at least some protein in a reasonable time following your workout, and some carbs may help as well. 

Diligence about your post-workout nutrition will also ensure that you recovery adequately and can proceed through the Y3T program without having to take a premature break. 

Sample Y3T Training Program 

Understandably, Hill’s Y3T training plan isn’t readily available online in full. That said, he has outlined a sample Week 3 that elegantly displays what he really means by “high-rep training.” 

Below is an example of what the set-rep scheme for each body part might look like during the third week of a Y3T microcycle. Hill notes that true high-rep training also comes with a lower overall number of sets. 

“If you’re able to do 20 sets of high-rep training, it’s not intense enough,” Hill notes. He also recommends keeping your eccentrics to two seconds and your rest periods around 90 seconds. 


  • Leg Extension: 3-4 x 12-15, followed by a triple drop set with 20-25 reps.
  • Leg Press: 1-3 warm-up sets, followed by a triple drop set with 25-30 reps.
  • Dumbbell Walking Lunge: 2 x 20-30 total steps. 
  • Barbell Squat: 2 x 20-25

Note: When it comes to technique, Hill recommends that you not lock your knees out on leg extensions to keep the load on the quads and help prevent injury. 


Note: Hill advises that you actively tense your hamstrings and glutes before each set to increase muscular activation while you work.


Note: Hill emphasizes the importance of working with lifting straps during a back workout like this. You don’t want your grip to be a limiting factor.


Note: Hill suggests that you avoid locking out your elbows on the pressing movements to ensure that the tension of the weight remains on your pecs. 


Note: Hill stresses the importance of the mind-muscle connection on shoulder movements. You shouldn’t be afraid to work with less weight if it helps you feel your delts more.


  • Cable Pressdown: 4 x 12-15, followed by 3 drop sets of 20-25 reps.
  • Dip: 3 sets to failure with the most reps possible.
  • Overhead Cable Extension: 3 drop sets of 20-25 reps.

Note: You should minimize shoulder movement during these exercises as much as possible to isolate your triceps, Hill says.


  • Barbell Curl: 4 x 12-15, followed by 3 drop sets of 20-25 reps.
  • Preacher Curl: 3 x 20-25
  • Straight Bar Cable Curl: 3 drop sets of 20-25 reps.

Note: To increase biceps engagement, keep your upper arms tucked to your sides and externally rotate your wrist as much as possible.


  • Seated Calf Raise: 4 x 12-15
  • Leg Press Calf Raise: 3 drop sets of 20-30 reps.
  • Seated Calf Raise: 3 drop sets of 20-30 reps.

Note: Hill stresses that you shouldn’t bounce your ankles at the bottom of your reps, to prevent elastic assistance from the Achilles tendon. 

When it comes to intensity, Hill’s Y3T plan isn’t for the faint of heart. While most intensity-based parameters for hypertrophy would have you slowing down or approaching failure approximately 80% of the way through your set, Hill says that you should hit that breakpoint much sooner in a Y3T workout:

“By approximately half way through [the set], you should be reduced to having to use rest-pause,” he says. 

woman performs lateral raise
Credit: Vladimir Sukhachev / Shutterstock

With that in mind, if you’re going to dabble in Y3T, you might consider bringing a training partner with you both for safety and to help with motivation if needed. 

May the Mass Be With You

It’s hard to make a stronger endorsement of Hill’s Y3T training than simply recognizing what he’s done for an athlete like Flex Lewis. Lewis has won an astonishing seven consecutive Mr. Olympia 212 titles, along with various other accolades over the course of his career. When it comes to getting a career bodybuilder in stage-winning shape, Hill is a force to be reckoned with.

For the layperson physique enthusiast, the value of Y3T is less clear. The programming is extreme, the reps are high, and the prescribed intensity isn’t for the faint of heart. Further, many of Hill’s claims regarding the physiological effects of Y3T are yet to be corroborated by credible research.

That doesn’t mean Y3T isn’t worth a shot, though. It’ll burn like hell and probably teach you a thing or two about yourself in the weight room. 


1. Damas, F., Phillips, S. M., Lixandrão, M. E., Vechin, F. C., Libardi, C. A., Roschel, H., Tricoli, V., & Ugrinowitsch, C. (2016). Early resistance training-induced increases in muscle cross-sectional area are concomitant with edema-induced muscle swelling. European journal of applied physiology116(1), 49–56. 
2. Hansen, B. F., Asp, S., Kiens, B., & Richter, E. A. (1999). Glycogen concentration in human skeletal muscle: effect of prolonged insulin and glucose infusion. Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports9(4), 209–213. 
3. Roberts, M. D., Haun, C. T., Vann, C. G., Osburn, S. C., & Young, K. C. (2020). Sarcoplasmic Hypertrophy in Skeletal Muscle: A Scientific “Unicorn” or Resistance Training Adaptation?. Frontiers in physiology11, 816. 

Featured Image: ALL best fitness is HERE / Shutterstock

Top Shotta owner wins bodybuilding title in first attempt – The Herald-Times

Taneisha Henline, left, celebrates after she was announced the overall winner in Figure at the 2022 NPC Natural Indiana Championships at Beech Grove High School.

Taneisha Henline wanted something new in her life.

She came to the United States from Jamaica in 2014, and has owned and operated the Top Shotta Jerk Chicken food truck in Bloomington since 2018. But after a few years, she sought a passion beyond her food truck.

Growing up in Jamaica, Henline always wanted to go to the gym, but it wasn’t affordable. Fast forward to 2020, her husband, Eli, encouraged Taneisha to join him at the gym to lift weights. He, too, thought it would be nice if they could enjoy a shared activity away from the truck. So she gave it a try.

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And she never stopped.

Though her first time at a gym was March 17, 2020 — one day before the Planet Fitness shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic — she found alternatives. She kept exercising.

It made a difference.

Taneisha Henline stands outside her Top Shotta Jerk Chicken food truck.

“When I first started in 2020, I just wasn’t happy with where I was,” Henline said. “I used to think I couldn’t. I was like, ‘I’m not too sure about where I’m at, being comfortable being in my skin anymore.’ And that’s not really a big part of me because you want to be happy about all of that. And then after working out and seeing the changes in my body, I’m more confident in myself and everything I’ve (done).”

Henline cycled through a few gyms before finding Iron Pit, where she felt like she fit in. After a while, she started seeing the results she wanted. Thanks to the weightlifting, along with a disciplined diet, she lost fat and added muscle. People would compliment her physique, and tell her she should compete.

Preparing for a challenge

Competition wasn’t in the picture when she started working out, but she was intrigued.  After researching different shows in the area, one in particular caught her eye: the Natural Indiana Championships through the National Physique Committee (NPC) at Beech Grove High School in Indianapolis.

This competition strictly prohibits any performance-enhancing drugs, while some other shows allow them. Henline had no interest in using steroids or other PEDs, and didn’t want to compete against people who did. So she entered this one in early May, with the show set for mid-June.

Taneisha Henline worked out at Iron Pit Gym as she trained for the 2022 NPC Natural Indiana Championships at Beech Grove High School.

She’d already developed a gym routine that didn’t cut into her time running the food truck. Her training would change for the competition, and there were days she felt sore while cooking her jerk chicken. But it didn’t impact her business.

“I’m in the gym by 6:30-7 every morning. So I set a time that I’m there, and then I go home and start my day from there,” Henline said. “It didn’t really impede anything for being able to be on the truck. Sometimes I would’ve wanted to be there a little earlier, but I would have to sacrifice that because I know I wanted to win this competition.”

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In preparing for the show, Henline changed the way she lifted weights. She focused on some different exercises, but mostly, she altered the patterns of her sets. She previously performed drop sets — stacking sets with little rest time until she couldn’t complete another repetition, and then removing some weight and repeating.

But for the show, she switched to the double progressive system — meaning she’d stick to a specific number of sets each week, but increased that number at the same weight for a few weeks, and then going back to the initial number with a little extra weight.

Her diet changed from eating at a calorie deficit to a calorie surplus to keep on as much muscle as possible. She still ate healthy — heavy on green vegetables and protein, while only eating carbohydrates two days a week. This was all in an effort to build a symmetrical figure Henline said the judges looked for.

Taneisha Henline flexes her muscles as she trained for the 2022 NPC Natural Indiana Championships at Beech Grove High School.

Henline practiced her posing for the show itself — essentially a beauty pageant. She didn’t work on stage presence, trusting that her personality would shine through as is.

After all the preparation, she was ready for the competition. She’d kept this endeavor a secret from everyone at Iron Pit until two days before. She was nervous, but trusted the effort she exerted through the training process.

“I tried to be mindful and aware that I can do this, I put in the work, and there’s no need for me to freak out. If I do everything that I need to do, then I’ll be calm as a cucumber, and that’s exactly what happened,” Henline said. “I didn’t leave anything for the last minute for me to be freaked out about. I made sure that everything was on point.”

A special moment

Henline stood on the stage at Beech Grove in disbelief.

She’d entered the show hoping to win at least one of the two Figure divisions she competed in — Class B and Novice. She knew she’d done all the hard work to get to that point, but didn’t know what would happen in the big moments.

Henline was stunned.

When her name was called out three times — once for each division, and once for the overall Figure winner — she wondered if she’d heard correctly. 

Taneisha Henline, middle, reacts to hearing her name called as the overall winner in Figure at the 2022 NPC Natural Indiana Championships at Beech Grove High School.

“In my life, a lot of things did not go my way. Even though you can feel as if you deserve it, it doesn’t mean you’re going to get it,” Henline said. “I felt like maybe this could be my thing and go my way. But I didn’t want to think that way and then it wouldn’t (happen). And so I just tried to remain humble the entire time and focus on what I can control.”

As the emcee announced her victory, Henline looked over at her husband to the side. She saw his demeanor shift from a nervous back-and-forth pace to jumping for joy. They met backstage moments later, and shared a tearful embrace. Eli was the one who coached her through his journey.

He was the one who encouraged her to take up weightlifting in the first place, and stood by her side as it turned into a strong passion.

“He was just so proud of me,” Henline said. “He walks up to random people on the street and tells them that I’m Miss Indiana. He was on cloud nine. It was a very good moment. It was a special moment for us.”

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Looking head

Henline is already looking ahead to her next competition, through the same organization at the same location in November. While this competition was Miss Indiana, the November show is Miss Indianapolis.

But she’s already feeling the positive effects of the changes she made in her life. The experience was big for Henline, both physically and mentally. It helped her continue letting go of her difficult childhood in Jamaica and opened up a new world for her.

“It’s been amazing,” Henline said. “Working out has a new meaning to me, and winning has a new meaning to me. Little girls, there’s hope; you don’t have to be your (childhood) trauma. It’s a part of you, but it’s not all of you. Everything around the show showed me that I’m a bada**. It’s been a great experience.”

Follow Herald-Times sports reporter Seth Tow on Twitter @SethTow, or email him at Forms Partnership With Retail Ecommerce Ventures – SGB Media, the online fitness store, has struck a deal to partner with private equity firm Retail Ecommerce Ventures (REV).

Terms were not disclosed. specializes in dietary, sports, and bodybuilding supplements. Its platform includes an e-commerce store with private label and third-party brands, its Bodyfit fitness coaching app, and a BodySpace and Forum online community with over 15 million registered members.

Founded in 2019 by entrepreneurs Tai Lopez and Alex Mehr, Retail Ecommerce Ventures has purchased a number of brands that were failing with a focus on switching to a digital-only approach. Its portfolio includes Pier 1, Radio Shack, Dressbarn, Ralph & Russo, Stein Mart, Franklin Mint, Modell’s, MentorBox, FarmersCart and Linens ‘n Things,

Retail Ecommerce Ventures’ team of e-commerce veterans are expected to bring their domain expertise into substantial operational roles within and help build upon the company’s online footprint.

“We couldn’t be more excited to become partners in the platform. My dad was a professional bodybuilder, and this is a brand I have been passionate about for nearly two decades,” said Lopez, executive chairman of Retail Ecommerce Ventures. “This company’s history is only in its first inning, and at a time when there’s so much noise and confusion on the internet,’s trusted content, products, and community are more valuable than ever.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Retail Ecommerce Ventures into the family”, said Karl Walsh, CEO of “Their expertise in e-commerce, digital marketing, technology, and community-building is a significant value-add to our platform and will further catalyze our growth both domestically and internationally. At, we are stewards of a legacy that supports individuals building their bodies and their lives – and this relationship will enable us to achieve our mission at an even greater scale.”