Interview Conducted By Bob Kupniewski
Bob: First and foremost could you tell us a bit about yourself, what you do, your accomplishments (Contest History) and your credentials?
Austin: I am 21 years old and live in Delaware, Ohio. I currently manage the personal training program at Metro Fitness in Delaware. I am a fulltime student taking classes online towards my B.S. in Nutritional Sciences. I also have a handful of nutritional clients that I coach mainly via email.
–2009 NGA Steel Valley Classic: 3rd Place Teen
–2010 NPC Natural Michigan: 2nd Place Teen
–2011 NPC Natural Pennsylvania:
1st Place Men’s Open Welterweight
Overall Men’s Open Champion
1st Place Men’s Novice Lightweight
Overall Men’s Novice Champion
–2011 NPC Mid-Atlantic Grand Prix:
1st Place Men’s Open Welterweight
1st Place Junior Men
–2012 NPC Team Universe
4th Place Men’s Open Welterweight
Bob: What is your generic guideline for training? Do you feel there should be a major difference between pre-contest and offseason regarding volume, frequency, and intensity? If So explain?
Austin: I utilize the Mountain Dog Training principles by John Meadows. I started this style of training about 1.5 years ago and haven’t turned back. This style is a combination of varying volume, high intensity, unique exercises and training sequences. Currently, John designs my training programs. I follow this style of training in both offseason and pre contest. However, the volume does vary and taper down some close to a show.
Bob: What is your general stance on nutrition as far as macro composition in any of your clients diets? Do you differ them much between pre-contest and offseason?
Austin: The answer to this is dependent on the person. I myself tend to be sensitive to carbohydrate but my body utilizes fats quite well. This tends to be true both pre contest and offseason. However, when it comes to getting in great condition, both fats and carbohydrate are often taken low while protein is left higher. Typically for a client I will start them with a diet depending on my assessment of their body type then make adjustments from there. For an ectomorph I usually keep their protein moderate, carbs moderate to high and their fats low. I’ve found my mesomorph clients to do well on most approaches. I deal with many endomorph clients and many of them do well on higher protein, low carbs and moderate to high fats. I do utilize carb cycling with some clients as well.
Bob: What different things do you utilize on your clients as far as refeeds and cheat meals go, and what are your thoughts on utilizing those in both (offseason and pre-contest)?
Austin: I usually allow my clients a cheat meal each week. Many of them are general nutrition clients so this is for sanity and social purposes mainly. If I am utilizing a carb cycling approach with a client I will often give them a high carb day or reefed. Again all of this depends on the client. Refeeds are typically used in the pre contest phase because the person is in a deficit whereas I employ a cheat meal during the offseason phase.
Bob: Do you believe in Intermittent Fasting and other non-generic meal patterns? Do you have to eat a certain amount of times per day to eat and why? It seems Meal Frequency is thrown around a lot lately with a ton of different research being published on PUBmed? Your stance?
Austin: I think approaches like IF and other non-generic meal patterns will work for most people. There are always exceptions and everyone reacts differently but for the most part these approaches work. Personally, I have not used a fasting protocol but I have varied my meal frequency and noticed no difference in body composition. I have eaten as many as 8 meals per day and as few as 4. I like the lower frequency because the volume of the meals increases. The only issue I find with lower frequency is choosing the right food sources. Bloating is an issue with the high volume in some cases.
Bob: What are your generic guidelines of Pre/Post workout nutrition?
Austin: I treat pre and post workout nutrition just like the rest of the day. I typically have a meal 1.5-2 hours before my workout and my post workout meal is my next scheduled meal. I am not big on the PWO window. I do feel it is important to eat after a workout but I don’t think you must consume a “witch’s brew” of a post workout shake to take advantage of your workout.
Bob: What is your stance when in a caloric surplus what do you believe in should be the minimums you should meet regarding protein, carbohydrates, and fats and why? Does any macronutrient trump others as far as protein sparing?
Austin: I explained most of this above. The breakdown of macro nutrients depends on what works best for the individual. Most will say carbohydrates will help keep glycogen stores full therefore sparing protein. However, as I mentioned above I do well with fats and can maintain fullness and muscle mass with fats and little carbs.
Bob: What is your general philosophy on food sources regardless if the individuals is in a caloric surplus or deficit, the phrase “Clean Eating” is thrown around a lot. Could you shed some light on research or any information regarding utilizing different sources in the offseason or pre-contest?
Austin: I feel as long as you get all the necessary micro nutrients then food sources can be varied. Sure there are certain foods that are not going to benefit you but as long as you eat fairly clean and meet your macro nutrient requirements then you will notice little to no difference in body composition. I feel that food choices should be based on what makes you feel the best both physically and mentally. Some foods are a trigger to some but may not be to others. Digestions issues can also be a problem with certain foods so those should obviously be avoided. The mental aspect is also important. As I mentioned, some foods are triggers and can make the individual feel guilty or trigger other mechanisms that cause hunger or cravings. Just like many other aspects of nutrition, food choices should be based on the individual.
Bob: What Supplements do you consider “Staples” or those that should be utilized on a daily basis? Also what supplements do you feel have their benefits in the offseason and pre-contest that should be considered or you utilize for a particular reason?
Austin: My staple supplements are as follows:
-Multi Vitamin (with 1st meal)
-Creatine Monohydrate (5g daily)
-Glutamine (15g daily)
-Natty Nutrition Slin Trol (with carb meals)
-Joint Support Supplement
-NTBM’s Whey to Build Muscle
-NTBM’s DAA powder (3g daily)
Bob: What is your motivation and inspiration? What first got you interested in bodybuilding or nutrition?
Austin: I participated in wrestling for 7 years and after graduating I looked to bodybuilding to fill my competitive void. I have always been one to try to do things others usually cannot do. Bodybuilding not only is a great challenge but it teaches many important lessons in organization and discipline. The nutritional aspect is intriguing to me because of all the science involved. I enjoy constantly learning and experimenting with nutrition. Bodybuilding teaches practical application of this information.
Bob: What are your future goals? Any specific things you want to accomplish?
Austin: I try to take this sport one day at a time. My current goal is to earn my natural pro status in the NGA and compete as a professional. I find myself constantly pushing my goals higher and higher.
Bob: If there was one thing you could go back and change throughout your career what would it be and why? What impact do you think you could re-write in your past to improve on who you are today?
Austin: The only thing I would do differently is start this sport sooner!!
Bob: Thank you for your time and effort in this Q&A Session, if there was one last tip you could give to those who are reading/following what would it be and why?
Austin: “Embrace the grind”