The Road to 2800+
The Garry Frank Chronicles
By Anthony Ricciuto
With all the sweat and toil that Garry had put into his training, and let’s not forget his new nutrition and supplementation program, he was primed to do some major damage. Garry has never been so focused and ready to set new standards in the sport of powerlifting. Garry was now determined to set a powerlifting total so unreal it was guaranteed to shock the strength world and have his competitors wishing they took up golf instead. When all was said and done we both knew that the powerlifting world would be amazed at what he was about to accomplish.
The Highest total of all Time
During the next year, Garry was hitting some unreal numbers in the gym and on the platform. In his next big contest, Garry hit an awesome 2640 total. Once Garry saw that 2600 fell like a piece of cake, he wasn’t going to be satisfied until he had a total so unreal it would make even the strongest powerlifters shake their heads in amazement. In no time he bettered his total to 2667 which he did at the WPO finals in November 2003. Again his assault on 2700 was so close yet no cigar. Then at Joe Ladnier’s APF meet he beat his total again with 2673. Again so close but it wasn’t written for him to hit that magic total on this day. Both of us were just itching for it, 2700 was going to go down and we both wanted it in the worst way. Then on March 6, 2004, it happened. Garry came in primed for this contest and he made sure that he wasn’t leaving this contest without his 2700. Even if it was going to kill him he wasn’t letting it slip from his fingers one more time. This was his day as he hit a 1047 Squat, 804 Bench, and an 854 Deadlift for a massive mind-boggling total of 2706. When I got the news from Garry about his record we were both excited as he just did what no man had ever done before. But Garry wasn’t satisfied. He told me that 2800 was in his bones and it was going down very very soon. I knew he could do it and with a little fine-tuning of his nutrition plan, we were on track for his next mega assault. In no less than a few short weeks away on April 3, 2004, Garry did what no man could even imagine. Garry went to the Jacksonville APF Open and smoked a 1085 Squat, 837 Bench, and an 881 Deadlift for an unbelievable total of 2805. No one in the history of the sport that was at the top of their class has put so much on their total in such a short time. To go from 2600 to over 2800 in such a small time span is unheard of. Especially when we are talking about the quality caliber of a lifter that Garry is. When I found out the good news I wasn’t shocked at all because this is what Garry and I had been planning over the last couple of years, it just took the time to nail it on the head.
Garry Breaking Records at Every Competition!
Weapons of Mass Construction
With all the awesome results that Garry has seen over his time working with me one on one, you all must be wondering a little more about his customized nutrition plan also known as The Nutrition XP3 System. Well, I thought I would give you a little glimpse into the world of the man that has set the extreme standard in powerlifting, a standard so high that even the strongest of men cry thinking of handling such super back breaking poundage. I know that most of you must be wondering, “What supplements does the strongest man ever to have walked this planet use in his nutrition plan?” Since I get several emails per week asking this exact question, I thought I would satisfy everyone that has been hounding me day and night. Here I will give you a brief look into what supplements Garry uses to help him build muscle, burn fat, improve his recovery, and most importantly get stronger.
Now any plan without a protein supplement is like driving a car without brakes, it’s a no brainer. Now with Garry, not just any run of the mill protein powder will do. It first must be of the highest quality. There are many good brands out there, but there are also many that I wouldn’t line a cat’s litter box with so choosing the right quality protein is very important. Next are the types of protein that Garry uses. He uses many different sources which include Micellar Casein, Cross Flow Microfiltered Whey Isolate, 520 Whey Hydroslate, Egg White, Bovine Serum, and more. The reason why he uses a large variety of formulas is that each type of protein has a different amino acid spectrum, Biological Value, and the rates of which they hit your bloodstream. A protein supplement should be part of every powerlifter’s meal plan because in today’s hectic life there are very few people that can eat the amount of protein they need on a daily basis without using one. That is unless you were born into a millionaire family, who has your own personal chef and the most hectic thing that you have on your schedule is trying to fit in your massage, pedicure, and hair salon appointment all in one day.
Protein Shakes were A Big Part of Garry’s Supplement Plan!
This is another very important part of every nutritional program. Not using a properly balanced multivitamin/mineral formula is just a plain stupid move at best. Making sure that you don’t have any micronutrient deficiencies is a major concern for the strength athlete so this should not be overlooked in the least. Garry uses a formula that hits the entire spectrum of micronutrients in individual tablets and capsules. Each packet has about 12 tablets making sure that you get everything here needed for maximum absorption. This includes fat and water-soluble vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes to make sure all the pieces of the puzzle are complete. A deficiency in even just one vitamin or mineral can make a big difference in your performance, recovery, and health so avoiding this is a must.
Garry’s Micro Nutrients were Dialed in Perfectly!
So before you crack any jokes about Garry using a fiber supplement here I better warn you it better be far away from him otherwise he may just twist you into the first human pretzel, and that’s if he is in a good mood. Fiber is no doubt the most overlooked nutrient in the powerlifter’s meal plan so it should be part of yours as well. Eating enough fiber will help prevent certain cancers and even help reduce your cholesterol level. So before you lay a smart-ass joke or have some stupid comments, think again. Eating enough fiber in your nutrition plan will no doubt improve your strength and performance but even help prevent many health ailments down the road. One fiber supplement that I really like is one called Fiber Works by a company called Ascentra. This is the same company that makes the NutraSea Herring Oil that I am a big fan of. I mentioned this some time back in one of my columns in regards to different fish oil supplements.
This is a very important part of Garry’s plan. Glutamine is one of the most important amino acids that you can consume. It has a lot of benefits for the powerlifter. This includes cell volumization, preventing catabolism, increases Growth Hormone release, helps improve your rate of recovery, and much more. Garry is a big believer in the power of Glutamine and has been a staple in his supplementation plan. During times of hard training, we increase the dose to best suit his individual needs. You will notice that when you are using Glutamine you will not over train as easily as you can while you are off of it. There are two main forms of Glutamine, which include L-Glutamine and Glutamine Peptides. They are both very good but I prefer the Peptide version for my athletes.
Now everyone under the sun has heard of creatine. One of the things that I do with Garry is cycling his creatine throughout the year. This is a supplement that Garry never took before I introduced it to his nutrition plan. Creatine will help increase your ATP stores thereby increasing your power endurance. You will notice while on it that you will be able to lift more and your reps at a specific weight will also increase. Another very important thing that creatine does is cell volumization. Here it will draw more water, glucose, and amino acids into your muscle cells thereby helping to increase protein synthesis. In layman’s terms, it will help make you bigger and stronger. Garry uses creatine during his pre-contest cycle and stays off of it during his off-season.
Creatine and Glutamine were a Must!
I have praised Essential Fats in my articles for the past 3 years in my column so you must have known that they would most definitely a big part of Garry’s nutrition plan. There are 4 main types of Essential Fats that I use with Garry. This includes Flaxseed Oil, Herring or Salmon Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and last an EFA Oil Blend. I cycle them with him and change them up through different parts of his training cycle according to best benefit him. This will give him a balanced and proper ratio of his Omega 3, 6, and 9 fats for optimal health and performance. For those of you who don’t use them in your plan, this is another big mistake that a large majority of powerlifters make. Your healthy fats not only will improve your performance but they will also help you recover from injuries faster, decrease your body fat level, reduce your cholesterol and most importantly increase your testosterone level. AHH, now I have your attention. Not only will this increase your strength but it will have another benefit as well… an increased sex drive. Well, now I have your attention. I can mention that it will help prevent diabetes, improve your cardiovascular health and even help you live longer. You just ignore my words. I mention that it can increase your sex drive and now I can see a line up of powerlifters at the local GNC buying up the stuff by the caseload.
Good Fats were Essential for Growth and Recovery!
Training “Secret Formula”
This is one of the formulas I developed that is to be taken just prior to and during training. Sorry, I can’t give you the details on this one here but I will tell you that it will make a big difference in your strength and endurance. The purpose of this formula is to provide the body with the right fuels while you train so that your energy reserves won’t bottom out during an intense training session. It will also give you a pump like never before. The amount of blood flow that you will get to your muscle being worked is another added feature. It will also provide the body with nutrients that will induce an optimal environment for increased strength and power output. As you can see here this formula is no doubt a very critical part of the supplementation plan.
Post Workout “Secret Formula”
Now with this formula I know you were probably hoping that I would give you my recipe here but I am not! Sorry but this is saved for my elite clientele. If you ask any of them that have used it they will no doubt let you know that is tastes horrible but the results are well worth it. This is a combination of several different ingredients with many different purposes and actions. These include insulin manipulation, cell volumization, anti-catabolism, protein synthesis, cortisol suppression, hyperhydration, and much much more. I know that you are itching for this recipe but I can’t give it to you so don’t send me a thousand emails trying to pry it out of me. If however, you become one of my clients it will no doubt be part of your plan.
Probiotics and Digestive enzymes
Now with all the food that Garry eats on a daily basis making sure he absorbs it is of utmost importance. When you are eating enough food to cause small countries to go hungry you want to make sure you get the most out of it. It’s not just how much food you take in per day but how much is absorbed. If you don’t think this area of your plan is important then give your head a shake. Probiotics and digestive enzymes are a very important part of Garry’s plan. Without them, there is no way he could process as much food as he does. When you are packing in boatloads of food they are a must to help with proper absorption and to maintain a healthy intestinal tract.
Now again don’t crack any jokes here because you may not make it to your next workout if Garry hears any smart talk. I have pushed the whole “Cleansing” thing in PL USA for a while and finally some of you more intelligent ones out there are starting to get rid of your old ignorant ways. I know I got a lot of slack at the beginning but now a lot of you are coming around. Once you heard that Garry gave it the thumbs up then all of a sudden many of you not only became very interested in it but have incorporated it into your nutrition and health plan. Keeping your organs healthy is a very important part of powerlifting. Remember my purpose here is to educate you to take your total higher but even more important to keep you healthy so you will live to lift as a master’s competitor.
Branch Chain Amino Acids
This is another supplement that Garry is a big believer in. Branch Chain Amino Acids consist of the amino acids Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine. These amino acids are critical to increasing your muscle mass and strength. You probably don’t know this but the BCAA’s constitute 35% of your muscle mass. They are both anabolic and anti-catabolic in nature. They also have a direct relation with maintaining a proper testosterone and cortisol ratio which if you have read any of my past articles you will know is very important. Since the human body can’t manufacture BCAA’s they must be consumed in your nutrition plan. These three amino acids play a vital role in increasing your strength, muscle mass and preventing the cortisol monster from taking over and destroying your valuable muscle mass. These are used with Garry in the last 12 weeks of his pre-contest plan to help repair and replenish the damage that occurs during his crazy training sessions.
Alpha Lipoic Acid
If you read my column monthly over the last few years you will know that I am always looking for that extra edge for my athletes. One very important supplement that I am very big on is ALA and R-ALA. Now, most of you must be wondering what the hell that is. Well ALA stands for Alpha Lipoic Acid. Now don’t get this confused with Alpha Linoleic Acid. This is an essential fat, so these are not to be confused with one another. Now you must be wondering, “What is this thing and if Garry takes it then I better get myself some too?” ALA has many benefits for the powerlifter. One very important thing is that it is one of the most potent antioxidants available. Now if you are not too familiar with this, antioxidants neutralize free radicals in the body, which can down the road, cause disease and illness. One example would be cancer. Now you are getting the picture. There are also a lot more than this super nutrient can do for you. One of the things that I like about this supplement is that it is a power insulin mimicker. It can help increase your level of insulin sensitivity which is something that all powerlifters should take notice of. This powerful supplement is used in Europe by doctors for those diagnosed with Type II Diabetes since it can help control blood sugar levels. It also is very good for protecting the liver from stress and toxins. It can also improve the function of other supplements as well giving it a synergistic effect. This supplement has numerous functions not only for improving one’s performance but also for the long term health of the lifter.
R-ALA is a Potent Anti-Oxidant!
This list would not be complete without Vitamin C to finish it off. I have praised the benefits of Vitamin C for the longest time to powerlifters and it has paid off. Vitamin C has numerous benefits for the powerlifter including increased immune response, decreased Cortisol levels, increased testosterone levels, repairs collagen and soft tissue, reduces soreness, and improves recovery. Vitamin C should be part of all powerlifter’s nutrition plans because of all the positive things that it can do not only for your strength but your health as well. I cycle the amount of Vitamin C that Garry uses throughout his training cycle. If he is training for an upcoming contest or if he feels under the weather then the dose will be higher. During his off-season, we still include it in his program but the dose is reduced.
Vitamin C is Amazing for Cortisol Optimization and Recovery!
Use Your Brain
Now just because I laid out some of Garry’s supplements that he uses when preparing for a contest doesn’t mean that you should all go out and buy everything you read here and start jamming it down your throat in a haphazard kamikaze formation. The supplements that Garry uses are those that were prescribed to him after his Nutritional Analysis. On top of this Garry is continually monitored on a weekly basis with changes made to his plan to suit his individual and specific needs. The dosages that he uses are also not, particularly what you will need. Don’t go out and try to take in 1000 grams of protein or 50 grams of Creatine in a single day to try and copy what you thought you saw here. The only thing that you will do is make yourself sick. The last thing to remember here is that your natural supplementation program will only be as good as your diet. There are many lifters that eat like a garbage disposal yet they pound in creatine and other supplements thinking that they are the magic bullet that will help them get their squat up another 100 pounds in 4 weeks. Supplements will only work properly when your nutrition plan is 100% on the money. This is why that I don’t recommend that you go on a supplement-shopping spree; meanwhile, you live at the local fast-food drive-through.
So here you have it, an inside look into some of the supplements that Garry uses to dial it in for contest day. One thing that you may have noticed but there is nothing super exotic in Garry’s plan. I only include natural supplements in my athlete’s plans that have been proven to produce results. This includes medical studies as well as real-world results. Next month we will take an in-depth look into what Garry eats to prepare himself for those monster lifts. Believe me, you will very surprised about what you are about to witness in the next issue. So hold on to your seats, and get ready to see what fuels this superhuman beast. You are going to be amazed! So until next month, eat clean, train hard and most of all stay healthy.
For those interested in the Nutrition XP3 Kit or those with any questions please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org