• Name: Derek Holt
• Age: 23
• Height: 5’10”
• Weight (Contest): 165 lbs.
• Weight (Off-Season): 170 lbs.
• Body Fat: 8%
• Hometown: Albuquerque, New Mexico
• Gym: Defined Fitness, Charter Fitness, Home Gym
• Profession: Student, Aspiring Fitness Model
2. What got you started in bodybuilding/fitness?
I first started focusing on fitness in high school when I was about 17 years old. I was really interested in martial arts and found a book by Bruce Lee called Art of Expressing the Human Body. This book introduced basic weight training for efficiency and muscular endurance and strength. This book was the beginning of an amazing journey of self-discovery and perseverance.
3. What keeps you motivated to train?
MIRRORS! Seeing self-progression in a reflection is such a huge factor in realizing what to work on and how to accomplish it. Forums and online information sites like MuscleDog.com help SO much by giving bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts connect with one another to share experiences and training tips. Above all, the strong desire to exceed my own limitations and expectations of myself is the biggest motivator in my life.
4. What workout plan has worked best for you?
I have always been a fiend for new exercise programs and variations in training methods. The routine I recently practiced was a mass-building routine found in a popular fitness magazine, MuscleMag. The first four weeks are four sets of 6-8 reps, with an emphasis on the big three: squat, deadlift and bench press. Weeks five through eight will be three working sets in the 10-12 rep range. Any new routine that pushes my body and mind to their limits!
5. What is your philosophy about cardio?
Cardiovascular health is JUST as important as muscular size and definition. The heart and lungs are both major organs that need exercise too! Long cardio sessions are what separate the weak from the dedicated!
6. What is your philosophy about weight training?
Resistance training is essential in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, especially us bodybuilders! It’s NOT, however, about who can lift the heaviest weight. Bodybuilding is about FEELING and CONNECTING with the muscle through your mind, and stimulating those fibers as best as possible. Slow and controlled repetitions will always lead to greater progression than just throwing around heavy weight any way your body can.
7. Do you prefer HIIT or steady state cardio?
I just started doing HIIT cardio for 30 minute sessions on off days and it is a KILLER! HIIT burns more body fat than steady cardio. The mistake that most people make nowadays is to stay on their cardio machine for an hour or longer! So much more work can be done in a much shorter time with High Intensity Interval Training.
8. What are your top 5 favorite exercises?
Incline Dumbbell Presses (chest)
Dumbbell Lateral Raises (shoulders)
Cable Crossovers (chest)
Bent Over/Cable Row (back)
Reverse Curl (biceps)
9. What is your philosophy about nutrition?
Nutrition and rest are two overlooked aspects of training, and both hold as much importance as training itself! I have always been a fan of eating, just like most Americans, but I tend to eat a little healthier than the overweight majority. Vegetables, meats, and nuts/legumes are my top three foods for energy and bodybuilding. In anyone’s training they need to make nutrition just as important as their training in order to see substantial gains.
10. What nutrition plan has worked best for you?
I’ve never really been ON a nutrition plan but the best things for me have been protein shakes in the morning and right before bed. I also make sure I take a multi-vitamin and a vegetable supplement in case I don’t reach the daily dosage of greens.
11. What is your favorite cheat food?
Candy of course. My favorites are skittles and hot tamales. I could eat an entire box if I’m not careful.
12. What is your favorite health food?
My favorite health food is STEAK or well-cooked chicken and veggies. I’m also a HUGE carb freak. I love my breads!
13. What supplements have given you the greatest gains?
GNC’s AMP Protein is pretty good for AM and PM shakes. Pre-workouts like Jack3d and LG Science’s Anadraulic Pump have given me some extra energy in the gym that is very much needed at those dragging points in the session.
14. What does your pre and post workout nutrition consist of?
Right now I’m taking a break from supplementation in order to begin a supplement log for USP labs on Bodybuilding.com. Pre and post workout nutrition just consists of a protein shake both before and after training for greater protein absorption for my damaged muscles. Carbs are GREAT for pre-workout.
15. Which tools have helped you most with your nutrition and training?
Taking college nutrition courses, also NSCA’s books like Essentials of Personal Training for proper execution of all bodybuilding movements. It has also helped in making calculations such as body fat percentage and my micro and macronutrient intake.
16. Have online resources (social networks) helped you in your training? If so, what are they and how have they helped you?
Yes of course! I am so glad there are social networking sights strictly for training and fitness/nutritional information. Connecting with fellow bodybuilders that have similar goals is just one way to make sure you have a constant flow of outside motivation.
17. Where is the first place you turn to when looking for training / fitness / nutrition advice?
I usually read the latest bodybuilding magazines with the most information given out by actual professional bodybuilders and trainers. MuscleDog.com is a great site with hundreds of fitness and bodybuilding enthusiasts willing to answer any questions I have regarding training and proper nutrition.
18. Who are your favorite fitness/bodybuilder competitors or role models?
Kai Greene—the 2010 Mr. Olympia! Bruce Lee was also one of the most defined and progressive bodybuilders of his time.
19. What obstacles have you had to overcome (injury, illness, relationships, etc)?
I’ve had a few minor injuries when I first started. Doing Parkour and Freerunning always put your body at risk but I have been extremely fortunate to not have had any severe complications with my health to inhibit my progression as a bodybuilder.
20. What was the biggest mistake you made when you first started training?
Improper form while lifting was my biggest mistake when I first started training. Most lifts I never even tried because of lack of education—important lifts like squats, deadlifts and bench presses. I also wasn’t as consistent as I should have been and didn’t make gains as fast as I could have.
21. What tips would you give to a beginner?
Connect with other bodybuilders! It is really easy to lose motivation when you’re first starting out and after you’ve accomplished your “new” gains. Keep a log of your training and possibly your nutrition in order to track your progress better and see how far you’ve come along. Above all, don’t EVER give up on yourself or your goals.
22. What are your future fitness goals?
I’d love to compete in the near future. My main goals right now are to see my ABS perfectly and drop my body fat down to abnormally low levels!
23. Where can we find you on MuscleDog.com?
Check out my profile and be sure to add me as a friend when you find me. Be sure to check out my fitness stats and photo gallery there as well, where my transformation pics are uploaded.