After coming off my best meet performance of my career, I am now taking some time to focus on competing in bodybuilding over the spring of 2017. My nutrition coaching is through Cliff Wilson, and I have not yet determined the shows I'm competing in at this time.

For programming and coaching inquires, please email or visit

This isn't going to be one of those sappy 2017 New Year Posts, but rather just lay out the thoughts that have been going through my head for the past few days.

Unfortunately I am going to not be competing in a bodybuilding competition at this time. I've ceased working with Cliff Wilson (nothing against Cliff at all, but I felt that if I couldn't be healthy enough to train, I was not only wasting my time, but his as well) and am focusing purely on myself. I know that I NEED to get healthy. And quite frankly, I've had a pretty good healthy powerlifting career thus far. I've hit some big weights, broken some records, and won some meets. All things I'm incredibly proud of.

However, over the past year or so, I've learned to listen to my body a bit more and not try to push through any limitations I might be having. If I was weeks out from a meet, this might be different, but right now I literally have NOTHING I'm training for except for bodybuilding - which was designed to keep me healthy and give me something else to chase, and that backfired.

So after talking to some special people in my life, we decided that I step down from competing in bodybuilding, and just give my body a break a pick something up when my body feels up and ready for it. Inside my body, I don't wan to quit prepping (that' the athlete in me) but the coach in me tells me it's what's best (thanks Clint Darden!). Right now I've got far more to lose than gain, so I'm taking the high road.

I'll just make a decision on what is best as my back gets better, but I'm already making strides every day to be where I need and want to be.

"Without disappointment, you can't appreciate victory"

My goal right now is simple - get healthy.

I'm not going to be squatting or deadlifting for a minimum of two weeks, but am looking to push this to four or even five weeks if I need to (and think that I might have to do that). Each week I'll reflect back and see what kind of progress I've made, and whether I can just take the bar and begin to work on that squatting pattern pain free.

I don't think this is going to be a HUGE set back, but with nothing planned on my plate as this time (I have some ideas, but that's why I want to take nearly a month of no squatting and deadlifting so if I do decide to pull the trigger I'm likely healthy) it's just what I need to do.

The Conjugate Monster is still on, we're just on a rebuilding stage. So expect to see a lot of exciting upper body training (since this is pain free), and me easing back into some lower body work as my body allows.