Take Us Through the Life of Phil. Who Are You and What Do You Do?
I’m a full-time Graphic Designer. I’ve been into bodybuilding for the last 6-7 years. I’m in the process of creating a website that will be my personal blog, a place where people can come and get an insight into what I do everyday and to learn about living my type of lifestyle. You can visit the website at philrayho.com.
How Did You Get Started on Training?
In 2005 I was at an unhealthy peak. I partied basically 3 times a week and had zero nutritional knowledge. Food was just something that kept me full. I had my own business out of my garage of airbrushing murals on show cars and bikes. I’d eat fast-food literally for every meal of the day, smoke every 15 minutes, and munch on mi-goreng at late hours of the night while in the garage. I had chest pains which brought me to visit my GP and at that point had a huge wake up call. From there its snowballed.
What Does Your Training Routine Look Like?
My routine is like a power ranger, it’s always morphing.
Here is a sample routine:
- Incline Dumbbell Flyes – 4×10
- Incline Dumbbell Press – 4×10
- Flat Barbell Press – 4×10
- Cable Machine Flyes – 4×10
Tuesday: Triceps and Calves
- Cable Rope Pulldowns – 4×10
- Incline Skullcrushers – 4×10
- V-bar Pulldowns – 4×10
- Weighted Bench Dips – 4×10
- Standing Calve Raises – 4×10
- Seated Calve Raises – 4×10
- Leg Extensions – 4×10
- Squats – 4×10
- Leg Press – 4×10
- Lunges – walk 4 laps around the gym
Thursday: Delts and Abs
- Machine Press – 4×10
- Dumbell Press – 4×10
- Bent-over Rear Cable Lateral Raises – 4×10
- Seated Dumbbell Lateral Raises – 4×10
- Bench Leg Raises — 5×10
- Roman Chair Leg Raises — 5×10
- Crunches till failure
- Pull-ups – 4×10
- Deadlifts – 4×10
- Bent-over Dumbbell Rows – 4×10
- Hammer Strength Machine Pulldowns – 4×10
- Bent-over Rear Cable Lateral Raises – 4×10
Saturday: Double Up Day
What Does Your Diet Look Like?
At this point I follow a paleolithic-style diet, and I say style because I don’t follow it 100%. I cycle in carbs on weekends and also use simple carbs to refill glycogen after depleting, say if there’s a day I would like to appear full such as a festival or photoshoot. For those that are unaware, a paleolithic diet consists primarily of meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, eggs and nuts. It is taken from the theory that cavemen lived off this diet that was high in saturated fat and proteins, and minimal in carbs. Nutritionists these days have really given a bad report against saturated fats and red meat over the last decades. For the bodybuilding community, red meat is a meal staple, filled with vitamins, iron, minerals and also creatine. What we should really be eliminating in our diet are grain products, excess sugar, vegetable oils, legumes and dairy, some which are at the basis of todays food pyramid!
Today I made Moroccan Chicken, one of my favourites as it’s easy to make, keeps for a few days in the fridge and taste awesome.
- 1 kilo of lean chicken breast
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1⁄4 cups fresh cilantro leaves, minced
- 3⁄4 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, minced
- 1/3 cup lemon juice
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Combine the lemon juice, garlic, cilantro and parsley in a bowl. Season to taste and add the chicken pieces, coating them well in the marinade.
- Place in a baking dish, skin side up and let marinate in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours.
- Preheat your oven to 350 F.
- Cover the baking dish with foil and cook for 1 hour, turning twice during that time.
- With the skin side now up again, uncover, change the oven temperature to 375 F and cook for another 30 to 45 minutes, until the skin is golden brown.
- Serve with all the juices, add a side dish of greens. or pack into lunch boxes and refrigerate for later.
What Supplements Do You Take?
How Do You Stay Motivated?
I think once you fall in love with this lifestyle, the motivation stems from within. That doesn’t mean theres days when I seriously cannot be buggered getting up at the crack of dawn to train. At times like those theres an unlimited amount of sources to get motivated, youtube videos, music that psyches me up, images of great bodybuilders, looking forward to getting that skin splitting pump, getting my heart racing and a big sweat happening during my cardio session, the thought that missing this session would make an otherwise perfect gym week IMPERFECT. I can really go on forever. If you have the hunger for something bad enough, you wont stop until it’s fulfilled. If you chose to go back to sleep, it’s not really a hunger for the bodybuilding lifestyle that you have, it’s probably just a craving, in that case this isn’t for you, go back to playing video games.
Any Tips For Those Who Are Just Starting Out?
Knowledge is power. Figure out what your goal is first and learn as much as you can about how your going to get there. Don’t train, eat or supplement without first knowing exactly what your doing. Buy magazines, read net articles and pump your brain with knowledge. In my opinion they key elements to progress is training, nutrition, rest and supplementation. Speaking hypothetically, if each of these bases is a few meters, and you cover each one flawlessly, then your already 10 meters infront of the regular Joe Blow and your physique will speak for itself. However if you’re not going to cover these bases properly, ie you only get 5 hours sleep because your out partying or what not. Or you think that munching on a chocolate bar when nobodies watching isn’t going to make a difference, then your going to look just about 70% of the other guys going around that lift, a little muscular, a little fat…. nothing special.
What’s One Thing You Learned From Your Years of Training That You Want to Share With Your Fans?
I still find it hard to grasp the concept that I actually have “fans”. But one thing I do want to get across is theres going to be times when you just want to throw in the towel and not train. You start looking for excuses not to go to the gym. “Oh I trained hard yesterday so I deserve a rest today” or “my nose is runny I might be getting a cold, I should stay home and eat lollipops and cookies”. It’s these times when you need to ask yourself how badly you really want this?
“Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those
who hustle.” – Abraham Lincoln
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