Can the Average Jane or Joe really create a body that pretty much every fitness pro would envy?
Of course. But they’ll need to use the right kind of training and have the right mental game plan to make it happen.
Your results will only pack as much of punch as the force you put into the effort.
This is why I’m always searching for new ways to keep my training fresh, on-point, and as productive as possible.
In Part 1 of my Reveal The Steel overview, I gave a quick peek at how my own training has evolved over the course of a few weeks, since I’d been using Clint Nielsen’s fitness course.
I sent Clint an email, and he was cool enough to let me interview him for you guys.
Cue the Questions and Answers…
Intro: Clint, I wanted to start by saying Thank You for taking the time to answer these questions for the Home Fitness Manual.
Thanks Mitchell, I really appreciate the opportunity.
Question 1: First off, what’s the Number One thing someone should start doing “today” to get in shape?
I think for anyone looking to improve themselves physically, they need to be realistic when it comes to body transformation.
It’s fantastic to have aspirations and use people in the fitness industry as well as Hollywood actors to aspire to—but you need to keep your expectations in check.
I talk about this in the book, and it’s easy to make considerable progress with pretty much ANY program out there— but the key factors that MAKE the difference are that once the you hit a plateau, or become disheartened by a sudden ‘slow-down’ in progress, that you realize it, and have the ability and knowledge to make adjustments required to move forward.
The path to an awesome physique is a long one and you need to be persistent for the results to come. I try to outline ways in which you can constantly remind yourself to keep moving forward and let nothing stand in your way.
Question 2: In Reveal The Steel, you talk about never fully seeing the results you always wanted. What was the catalyst that helped you to find your foot hole in your own training, and start seeing those long awaited results?
I guess coming to terms with genetic potential ‘without assistance’ was a real import one. I think John Barban said it well and I quote: “The gap between what you can do naturally vs what you’re exposed to in media is what fuels much of the obsessive compulsive diet and fitness habits of people looking for a non-drug solution for a drug induced look.”
That holds so true to me (especially in my early years when I bought a lot of trashy fitness magazines.
Besides completely lowering my expectations, there were a couple of REAL catalysts. The most important one was just ‘eating less’. I forever struggled with my body-fat levels; seemingly never able to obtain a six-pack or any kind of lean state.
The solution was quite simple: I was just eating too much and too often.
The other important factor was training less often, but with more intensity — I used to frequent the gym a minimum of 5 days a week and spend at LEAST an hour plus doing sh*tloads of isolation exercises etc. I guess my programs were typically body building focused, or created partially from things I found in mags.
Don’t get me wrong, I put on some serious size and strength, but if I took the shirt off, I was hardly the epitome of good-health.
Question 3: I don’t think I’ve ever met someone who doesn’t want to get a super cut six-pack. How often do the abs need to be worked to really get them looking sharp?
Although I definitely agree that ‘abs are made in the kitchen’, once you get down to body fat levels where your ‘abs are indeed visible’, it is then I recommend working them a little more often.
Too many gym-goers will train abs every single day in the hope that it will shed their belly-fat and reveal a nice shiny six-pack underneath — not so. Spot reduction is a myth.
I recommend training abs a couple of times a week, and then when you’re trying to ‘peak’ for events/competitions, you can double that amount to really define the mid section.
However for most people, it just isn’t necessary to be training them so often.
Question 4: How can the average person really develop a body that’s on par with guys like Daniel Craig or Joe Manganiello, and ladies like Anne Hathaway or Megan Fox?
First off I’d say that genetics does come into play to some degree, but I’d argue a lot of us have never hit our own ‘genetic peak’ nor know how to reach it.
No doubt, the people you’ve mentioned have full time personal trainers and permanent dietitians (as well as a requirement to hold a certain ‘look’ in order to score movie roles), but that doesn’t mean they’re necessarily what I’d call ‘gifted’.
For most of us, it’s much harder to critique our own lifestyles subjectively — to know what we’re doing incorrectly. Are we eating the right way for our goals? Are our workouts effective?
For the ‘mega stars’, a lot of these factors are taken out of their hands and placed into the hands of the team that surrounds them to make sure they’re at the top of their game.
As for the rest of us, we need our OWN will power and a strong desire to change—one that doesn’t rely on a modelling job, or a movie role to make sure we achieve it.
If you couple a strong desire with solid training and nutritional advice there’s absolutely NO reason as to why you cannot achieve the physique of any one of them.
Question 5: A good portion the program is focused on Strength (+Fat Loss). Have you seen this as a major issue people seem to struggle with the most?
I tend to focus on the strength and fat-loss areas as I see them as the big two that have been the most important to me in my own career.
Fitness enthusiasts often forget that when you lose a considerable amount of body-fat, you’ll ‘appear’ significantly bigger. I’ve lost track of the amount of times I’ve heard in the gym over the years after shedding 5 pounds that I look like I’ve ‘bulked up’.
The visual illusion of strength gain coupled with body fat reduction is quite the force to be reckoned with.
Question 6: On your blog (Crude Fitness) you suggest the Reverse Pyramid Training format when lifting weights. This is very much the flip-side to what most people are taught in resistance training. Can you give a run down of how this can create the path for boosting strength?
I’ve talked about RPT a lot in the past because I’ve found it a solid method for maintaining/building strength whilst trying to reduce body fat. It’s been around for quite a while, and may have lost focus in light of other methods for strength-gain, but people like Martin Berkhan have bought it into public focus once again.
The reason I choose to use it? Quite simply, it’s been so effective in my own results and those of my beta-testers that I made it the foundation of the ‘first stage’ of Reveal The Steel.
RPT is kind of like ‘forced adaptation’ in that your muscles will be fresh and ready to undertake your ‘heaviest’ load at the very start of any exercise. So it completely makes sense as to why it’s effective, and I’ll continue to promote it for the long term.
Question 7: How often do you change up your own workouts?
I change them more often than I probably should!
At the moment I’ve been using Reveal The Steel as my training program which sees me changing it up every 4-8 weeks depending what stage I’m at. This is the third time through RTS and I think it’s testament to how good I truly think it is.
It probably sounds cheesy to say I use my own program, (and I’m not trying to push it onto everyone, because quite simply not everyone out there will find it appealing) but for me, it keeps me the way I like to look and gives me enough variation and freedom to keep my physique the way I like to keep it
Question 8: You’re a big fan of Intermittent Fasting, just like myself. Is there any takeaway advice you can give someone who’s interested in fasting while training?
There’s a bunch of different ways to tackle IF when coupled with training. I’d recommend reading the works of Martin Berkhan, Brad Pilon and co. to get an understanding of what’s going to work for you in the long term.
Each method works on it’s own merit.
In terms of it’s effectiveness whilst training, I’d say the results for myself and others have been significant – Strength in the gym doesn’t suffer (training whilst fasted) and I maintaining sub 10% body-fat levels year round is definitely possible.
Kind of a no-brainer for me personally, so I implore you to at least give it a go.
Question 9: What’s your favorite exercise (weighted or bodyweight) to perform?
Weighted dips for sure. Nothing quite like strapping heavy loads to your waist and busting out a set of 10.
Other than that, it’d have to be pretty much any tricep exercise (close-grip bench to diamond pushups). Too many favourites
Question 10: What’s the one quote you call up when you need a bit of inspiration?
It’s a quote by Russel Warren that I use all too often! — “Obsessed is a word the lazy use to describe the dedicated”.
Clint…Thank’s so much for Answers. I know the Home Fitness Manual community appreciates it!
Win A Free Copy!
Clint was such a great sport during the whole interview process that I got him to give 1 FREE Copy of Reveal The Steel to the Home Fitness Manual community!
To enter at a chance to win that free copy, all you have to do is simply head over to the Reveal The Steel Sales Page, and then answer this one easy question in the comment area on this post:
“What do you think about this program, and how could it help you change your life?”
Here are the rules:
- Enter your comment about Reveal The Steel before the end of the day on Thursday, August 23.
- Good, thoughtful comments will definitely get higher consideration. I only want to give this away to those who will really use it, and who really want it.
- Early entries will get special consideration.
- On Friday, August 24th at noon (PDT-since I’m in the West Coast) I’ll pick the one (1) lucky winner and contact them via email.
- The winner will receive 1 free copy, and they’ll be announced in next Monday’s post and newsletter.
- Oh, and good luck!
Even if Reveal The Steel isn’t for you, I still recommend you at least follow along and read the comments shared by everyone. It should be pretty inspiring to see everyone’s readiness to make positive change happen.
Thanks for your time, as always.