Interviewed by Mike Westerdal
Today I’d like to introduce you to Skip LaCour who has established himself as a leader in the bodybuilding world. In his passionate effort to propel training, nutrition, supplementation, and mental strategies forward, he has authored ten books, produced six videos, and has frequently contributed to several international magazines. He has accomplished all of this and more while simultaneously becoming one of the world’s best drug-free bodybuilders. After reading his HIGHLY recommended new eBook Simple Bodybuilding Nutrition, Skip was kind enough to answer some questions for us!
SL: To make it to the elite level of drug free bodybuilding, you must have a combination of very good genetics, an extraordinary work ethic, be consistent with your training and eating habits, and be intelligent in your approach to training and eating. I believe I had ALL of those components working for me—and that’s why I’m known around the world for what I do and have been for such a long period of time.
If you do not have all of those components working for you, you can still build an admirable physique. You just may have a challenge getting to the elite level.
I had a decent amount of size when I was younger, great shape to my muscles, was strong and athletic. So, I don’t have a “Skinny Skippy” story to tell you.
I do have a story to tell of effective and efficient eating strategies—regardless of what your genetic conditions may be. I can help you make the most out of what you’ve been given—and find ways to overcome what you weren’t. And, that should be everybody’s goal: Become the very best YOU can be. You simply MUST NOT make your journey of toward great physical development a contest between you and other people.
I also have a story to tell of effective and efficient mental strategies. I have a story to tell of work ethic, longevity, and dedication. Those qualities are oftentimes far more important than the specific training or eating strategy a person chooses.
I didn’t even start bodybuilding until I was 27 years old which most people would think is too old to get into bodybuilding and progress as far as I did as a competitor.
MW: That’s some great advice which leads me to my next question. You’re also involved with personal development and your MANformation personal development for men. I’m wondering if the lessons you learned from bodybuilding carry over to the rest of your life? Or, did you take the personal development skills that you teach and apply them to becoming a champion bodybuilder? Which came first—or did they develop together?
SL: I’ve been heavily involved in personal development even since the age of 21. That’s when an employee I managed at my job took me to a Zig Ziglar seminar. That seminar changed the direction of my life.
Many years later, I really started studying the work of Tony Robbins. I became such a great student of his work that he put me in one of his infomercials as an example of success that ran on television for years.
In was in those seminars and workshops that I made of the ambitious goals and specific plans to become the best drug free bodybuilder in the world, help others achieve their personal goals both inside and outside of the gym, and make my living doing what I love to do. At that time, I was a manager for a large grocery store chain.
After I retired from competitive bodybuilding, I became a motivational speaker and conducted seminars about self-improvement. My seminars evolved into my MANformation courses.
When you become more aware of the Alpha Male Leadership characteristics that I outline in my MANformation courses; appreciate how they can affect the quality of your life; learn how to adopt them into your own personality; and practice these skills, you’ll have more options in life. “Options” are all the things in life you REALLY want—and they are far more than all of those things in life that you merely settle for. Money, power, and relationships/sex are examples of the options in life many that men want, want more of, or a better quality what they already have.
MANformation a combination of all of my life experiences—including bodybuilding. Especially handling everything that comes with putting your opinions “out there” as a leader.
In many ways, MANformation is my personal story striving for success in life. It is a culmination of what I learned from the great peak performance coaches and motivational speakers I studied under—and then translated those lessons into my own life. It’s my journey figuring out how to effectively deal with the up and downs; good and bad; high and lows; and everything else that life inevitably put in your path.
My MANformation Alpha Leadership Strategies audio courses have “struck a nerve” (in a good way) in thousands of bodybuilders at every level—from beginners all the way up to advanced competitive bodybuilders.
MW: That course sounds life changing. It’s on my wishlist now and I’m looking forward to learning more. Switching gears, what is the main variable that needs adjusting if you’re a hardgainer and have trouble putting on muscle? What would a hard gainer adjust compared to someone who has more fat to lose?
SL: I really don’t like the “hardgainer label” people choose to brand themselves with. The Law of Relativity states that “nothing has any value unless compared to something else.” So, obviously a person has consciously chosen someone with better genetics to compare themselves to when labeling themselves as a hardgainer.
Why not pick someone who has the same genetics potential as you? Why not pick someone who has worse genetic potentail than you? Everyone could consider themselves a hardgainer if they compared themselves to the “right” person (or, in this case the “wrong” person). Hell, there are plenty of bodybuilders at the elite level who I could compare myself to and then brand myself a hardgainer.
I just don’t see the point of branding yourself with such a disempowering identity–especially in bodybuilding that takes commitment and discipline many times a day and every single day. “Well, I am hardgainer—but I’m going to get to the gym and do this training program—but I’m only going to get average results. Well, I’m a hardgainer but I am going to stick to this diet and stay away from all the food that taste amazing—but I’m only going to get average results.”
Look, we all have what we have. Our job is to make the very best with what we have. You do that by following through with the basics of training, nutrition, AND an outstanding mindset.
The less gifted you are, the more you need to follow through with the physical and mental basics and probably do so for a longer period of time.
MW: That’s very helpful, I hadn’t thought of it that way. Do you have any suggestions for losing body fat while training for strength in regards to nutrition?
SL: You can lose body fat and train for strength at the same time. You do not have to make it and “either/or” situation. You must strive to make it an “and” situation.
That takes a lot of focus and discipline in the gym and at the “dinner table”—but I think most people realize that.
What will separate those who succeed from those who struggle are a person’s eating habits. You have to plan your day in advance and be prepared and organized to eat all of your meals. Eating five or six meals a day works. Following through on a consistent basis is the key to success.
MW: Many athletes want to increase muscle mass and decrease body fat to improve performance in their respected sports. Would you recommend that athletes who practice a sport daily eat in a similar way that a bodybuilder would in order to gain muscle and lose fat?
SL: Yes. It works. It’s all about feeding the body the calories and nutrients it needs throughout the day to help it run optimally.
Eating all of your meals every day and getting enough protein, carbohydrates, and good fats is what you need to do. There is no secret plan—although some plans are better than others. Do what works like a machine. Step up and get it done. It doesn’t matter what sport you play.
Now, if a person isn’t committed to do what they must to build the maximum amount of muscle, get their body fat down to lower levels, and be string in the gym, that’s fine. A person just needs to accept that and stop looking for easy answers and methods to achieve success. You either need to raise your standards—or lower your expectations.
MW: Now that’s a great quote! Skip, is there such thing as a perfect muscle building diet?
After committing and following through with just about any diet, you’ll have the practical experience, knowledge, and momentum to make the necessary adjustments to find out exactly what works best for you. It’s a process. The chances are great that you are not going to find the “perfect diet” for you in your first attempt. But, rest assured, you will have good gains if you stick to it. If your diet doesn’t “work” it could very well be your mindset, execution, and consistency that are the problems.
A healthy, mentally flexible person should say when evaluating a diet plan something like this: “That diet I tried for several months had some great aspects to it. This is what I like about it and this is what I learned. I can take what I learned and make adjustments from there.”
Too many people complain about their diets when they should be putting most of the blame on the person they see in the mirror. (When they are standing in front of that mirror by themselves, of course.)
I’m not saying all diets are the same and any diet is just as effective as any other. I am saying that people make their search for the perfect diet far more complicated that it has to be.
It basically all comes down to five different variables, gentlemen: How many calories; How much protein; How many carbohydrates; How much fat; and how many meals are you going to break those calories into throughout the day.
You need to get the help you need to figure those variables out without driving yourself crazy. You need to get yourself a “coach” and shave time, frustration, confusion, and overwhelm.
MW: To really get results with a meal plan do you have to measure your food and count calories?
SL: I think that measuring your food is very helpful at the very start of your physical improvement journey until you can “eyeball” it. I suggest that everyone measures their food for at least a few weeks – just for the knowledge and experience you’ll gain. I, myself, certainly did that at the beginning of my journey. It’s an extremely helpful exercise and lesson that will provide you with insight that will last the rest of your life.
MW: Thank you so much for your time and sharing your insight with us. Hopefully we can do this again real soon. note: If you’d like to learn more about Skip LaCour’s nutrition planning visit the link below.
By On February 22, 2011 15 Comments
Never in my life have I felt so amazing and useful as a “servant”, supporting people in becoming what I call “The Strongest Version Of Themselves“.
Far from being a cheap promotion for our new training system Lean Hybrid Muscle Reloaded…. I created this blog post to share some of the awesome things that users of our system are experiencing… only 2 weeks after it’s release!!
I am SHOCKED and AMAZED at that same time!
But don’t get me wrong. It’s not that I am shocked that people are burning fat and building muscle at the same time with our system, especially since I used the exact system to create my own personal transformation…. but I am shocked at how many of you are hard core action-takers!!
Not only have you dug right in and started the Hybrid Reloading Diet and Hybrid Muscle Workouts but you have been so diligent as to send us your updates, pictures and videos… also, I am happy to see many of our Hybrid Muscle Tribe Members updating the training logs on the membership site.
So, instead of making this one of those cheesy testimonial sites with fake names and stock photos… I ripped a few posts from my personal Facebook Fanpage and attached some videos that our Hybrid Muscle Militia have been posting and updating us with.
I want to send a very, very BIG thank you to all of our new Lean Hybrid Muscle customers, fans, tribe members and “militia”. You guys believed in Mike and I when people were calling us names and claiming that we were frauds. I ask you… does a fraudulent system produce results and get people as excited as this?
You guys are family now… and we’re fighting to give you everything you need to become The Strongest Version Of YOU!
Keep up the great work!!
One More Thing!! PLEASE KEEP SENDING US YOUR VIDEOS AND RESULTS!! — you can either post your videos on our LHM Facebook Fanpage ; post in the comments area in this blog post; Post on Mike’s Facebook or Elliott’s Facebook; post in the Hybrid Tribe Website or e mail it to moc.liamgnull@elcsumdirbyhnael (we really love getting these!)
By On January 3, 2011 2 Comments
by Mike Westerdal
He’s right across the pond from Elliott and I. We call Tampa Bay the pond, so in reality his gym Elite Strength and Conditioning is a quick 20-minute drive from Elliott’s gym Strength Camp.
Now Chandler initially contacted Elliott and I because he ‘s a big fan of Lean Hybrid Muscle training and has been using the workout system to train high school and college athletes at his gym.
In fact, he’s been testing out our new Lean Hybrid Muscle Reloaded program with some “Guinea Pigs” at his facility.
Ya this is something we’ve been hinting about in our emails lately but we’re not quite ready to let the cat out of the bag yet. We’ll have some data for you in a few weeks and let you know what the scoop is, don’t worry. So far the results have been pretty insane, but more on that later.
Right now I want to hook you up with an pdf and mp3 interview with Chandler Marchman, CSCS.
Now beware! Chandler might be the funniest guy I have ever interviewed!
As you can tell by the pic in this post he has a sense of humor and believes that people learn best when they are also entertained. This interview you are getting free access to is part of my paid Weekly Muscle Building Expert Series.
Since Chandler is training his clients with Lean Hybrid Muscle Reloaded principles I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce you to him in this exclusive interview.
Here’s an excerpt:
Mike Westerdal: So, you’ve talked about some of the guys that influenced you and you’ve spoken about some of these training methods. How would you explain your training methods overall? Are those the main techniques you use or have you adjusted any of it?
Chandler Marchman: A lot of what I said is pretty much I’ve taken what’s worked. I like to think I want to build a strong, fast, explosive athlete with a little bit of…with some gas tank in him as well. So, I look for the guys that are strongest, powerlifters, Strongmen, and I take how they train, throw them in the pot. I go for the bodybuilders, they guys that are able to gain a lot of weight, throw some of that into the pot and do the same thing for the guys that are just trying to get faster. Go to the sprinters, how do they train? Do that, throw it all together, organize it and it’s doing well for me.
But, I’ve got a lot of intensity in the whole aspect of it. One thing, and I know Lean Hybrid Muscle has been awesome with this and it’s just kind of blowing the top off things, proving all the naysayers wrong. The cardio aspect, first off, it just…you know as well as I do, it blows. No one wants to sit there and do 45 minutes of a jog or anything like that. I always tell people, you don’t need that to be lean. If you just want to look good, I mean, Hell I don’t want to spend two hours in a gym. I’d much rather do a 45 minute or an hour workout with some intensity and leave feeling like I did something.
Plus, the great part about it is your results are twice as good in probably half the time. It’s mindboggling that people will continue to do the same things over and over and over again, get the same results and still follow it. It’s just… People amaze me every day. if they would just trust that these principles work, I mean, they work.
Read the full Chandler Marchman, CSCS interview using the link below.
PDF Transcript: http://www.leanhybridmuscle.com/pdf/Chandler_Marchman.pdf
MP3 Audio File: http://www.leanhybridmuscle.com/podcasts/Chandler_Marchman.mp3
(right click and select save target as to download)
By the way if you like this interview you can get 5 more for a buck by clicking the image below:
By On December 8, 2010 No Comments
Our buddy Ryan that trains with Elliott and Mike sometimes jumped on the line with Craig Ballantyne to interview him about Turbulence Training. Don’t forget Craig’s holiday fat loss system is on sale for 75% off right now Lean Hybrid Muscle fans. The recording of the phone call got messed up so we had it transcribed and posted below for you. -Mike & Elliott
RM: Hi guys, welcome to the line. This is Ryan Magin doing an interview for Lean Hybrid Muscle, and today I’ve got a really awesome guest. It’s Craig Ballantyne, the author if Turbulence Training, and a pretty established trainer in…basically the world now, with the internet. Craig, you on the line, right?
CB: Yeah, man. Ready to go.
RM: All right. Craig, thanks a lot for joining us today. I appreciate you taking the time and hopping on the line and helping out all my readers and listeners.
CB: Hey, happy to help.
RM: Good stuff. Well, the first question, how did you get started? What’s your background? How did you get into the whole personal training industry?
CB: Yeah, good question, and like most trainers, I really was the sporty kid when I was a kid, and that’s how a lot of my friends got into it. They wanted to keep training for sports. And so, I started training in my parent’s basement when I was 16 and that led me to a university degree in Kinesiology. And I started training people probably in the mid ‘90s when I was in school.
And then, I did a Master’s Degree in Exercise Physiology. And that’s where I came up with the Turbulence Training program based on interval training that I was using with athletes and the training that I was reading about, the workouts that people were studying, and then also the workouts that I was using with scientific subjects that I was testing for sports supplements when I was in the university.
By On September 15, 2010 25 Comments
This is the place for a free interview that will be did live with Nick Nilsson about his new program Mad Scientist Muscle…on Wednesday night. No worries if you missed it, the replay is available below.
Feel free to submit your questions below in either the comments section or live through facebook.
By On September 1, 2010 2 Comments
Many of you have probably heard of “Skinny Vinny” or Vince Del Monte. Back in the day he was a scrawny marathon runner that went through a growth spurt hitting 190 lbs. Then he hit another plateau. This interview is to find out how he’s been training to break past that genetic barrier and keep on growing. Now he’s up around 210 lbs.
To Learn More About Vince’s Advanced Training Philosophy Visit: http://www.MaximizeMyMuscle.com
In this audio interview mp3 podcast with Vince we’ll discuss:
- The 12 Anabolic Targets (the same methods that Vince used to go from 190-pounds to 210-pounds with no extra fat)
-What is an Anabolic Target? (Straight-talk on why these bust through plateaus)
-100 Rep Muscle (The lynchpin of his curriculum-based program)
-Why Progressive Overload Can’t Work Forever (eye-opening info you must understand)
-Advanced Muscle Building Tips (perfect if you’ve been training longer than years)
-Positions of Flexion (the foundation of Phase 1 to banish slow results)
-Volume Training (find out if it has a place for drug free trainees)
-Overcoming genetics (astonishing insight you got to hear)
By On August 5, 2010 7 Comments
Metabolic and Neural Protocols Redefine Training
Metabolic and neural training are causing a major shift in fitness thinking – which is no surprise based on the amazingly fast whole body results they deliver. Want to know more? Listen to this audio interview I conducted Dr. Kareem Samhouri otherwise known as Dr. K.
In this interview with Dr. K the creator of the Ab Strength Guide we discuss the following topics:
-3D Ab Training
-The Old Way of Training Abs & The New Way
-Metabolic & Neural Training Protocols
-How Important is Nutrition Revealing Your Abs?
-The “After Burn” Effect
-How Often To Train Abs
-Is Equipment Needed To Get Abs?
-Ab Gadgets & Fat Loss Pills
-The Biggest Ab Training Misconception!
After you are done listening to the audio interview be sure to:
CLICK HERE for a free Six Pack Abs Presentation
Right Click To Download
Read more about Dr. K and how is Ab Strength Guide can help you get six pack abs in just 10-minutes a day by visiting this unusual page: http://www.criticalabs.com
By On May 12, 2010 4 Comments
We all know that how we eat and the nutrition we give our bodies has a major role in the amount of fat we can burn and muscle we can build.
The two major obstacles we struggle with when it comes to eating clean are:
1) Being prepared. Once you’re hungry it’s too late to make a good decision.
2) Some of us travel a lot and don’t always have access to high protein healthy foods we like to eat at home.
Speaking of traveling I met up with Dave Ruel the author of the Anabolic Cookbook this past weekend while I was in Quebec City.
Check out the video below as I pick “The Muscle Cook’s” brain and steal some recipes and tips for us.
Enjoy & bon appetit
By On February 17, 2010 3 Comments
Westy, Roman & E-man
Yesterday we sent an email out about Roman’s Final Phase Fat Loss program and got bombarded with questions.
The best way to get them all answered was to get John “Roman” Romaniello on the phone for an exclusive interview.
Roman is a true Hybrid Warrior. How can we say that?
By On January 3, 2010 17 Comments
NN: Hey Mike, thanks for taking the time to talk with me. I heard your boss over at Critical Bench sent you on an extended vacation for stirring up all this controversy lately.
MW: Ya my boss is a real jerk. No, I’m just kidding, I’m my own boss. Most people don’t even know that’s my site. I’m kind of coming out from behind the curtain so to speak to share some workouts I’ve been experimenting with lately.
NN: What exactly do you mean by Hybrid?
MW: It’s pretty cool because it has a double meaning in this case. The general definition of “hybrid” is combining two or more different things. In this case we want to take the best of several training philosophies in order to accomplish multiple goals at one time.
We also have what’s been called the “Hybrid Muscle” which is really what Lean Hybrid Muscle Building is all about.
NN: Okay Mike I’ll take the bait, what the heck is a “Hybrid Muscle”?
MW: When talking about “super hybrid muscle,” we’re referring to a muscle that has essentially been reconfigured, adding mitochondrial density, which results in a bigger stronger muscle with more endurance capacity. This is accomplished by combining cardio and strength training into a single activity.