6 Pack Fitness X BSN Supplements Athlete Ryan Hughes Pt. 1
In honor of our partnership with BSN Supplements and the 6PF X BSN collaborative bag, 6 Pack Fitness sat down with BSN athlete Ryan Hughes and talked about his training regiment, his meal planning efforts and his experience as one of the first pros in the IFBB Physique Division. In part one of this blog series, Ryan tells us how he made the transition from bodybuilding into the physique Division and talks about how he manages to juggle work, play and life in the gym.
You're one of the first stars in the IFBB Physique division. What has that whole process been like and how have the competitions been so far?
It's good. I actually did one amateur show and I qualified for Nationals and then I turned pro at the first National show with Matt Christianer. So, him and I were the first two pros. Since then I've competed four or five times and always kind of in the mix. It's definitely a bit different from competing as a professional bodybuilder, there are some other factors that come into play. It's cool to get on stage at the professional level. When I was doing bodybuilding three or four years ago I thought the only way I would compete on the professional level was as a bodybuilder. I didn't really see that happening. So it's cool to have this division and get to compete on the pro level.
What are the basic differences between the Physique division and others on the professional circuit?
We wear board shorts and it's basically a more aesthetic, attainable physique. The guys that are pros are still big and have a ton of muscle, but it's still within reach for the average person if they were to spend a few years building their physique. Whereas with bodybuilding, the guys are just on a completely different level that isn't really attainable by the average person.
What's been the most difficult aspect of competing for you?
It's just a balance of everything. It's hard to balance. I have a couple of things going on here in New York, so fitness is a part of my life, but it's not everything. It's hard when you're doing the competitions because it almost has to be everything. I still enjoy, I still do it and I love doing it, but it's finding that balance.
With all of that being said, how much time are you spending in the gym on a day-to-day basis?
For myself, I typically train about an hour and a half a day, seven days a week. I still make sure to always have that time for myself, but my entire day isn't spent in the gym like some guys. That's the major difference about me. I do what I gotta do and I get out of there.
What's your current split like?
I break it down to a body part a day. I do chest, arms, shoulders, back and then I recently started splitting up quads and hams to get my legs going. It gives me roughly something to do every single day of the week without repeating and then I start all over again fresh on Monday.
The validation of a pro card means a lot to athletes, but do you remember the moment you went in pro in your mind? Do you remember when a switch flipped and you upped your intensity?
It was right before I moved to Manhattan, I had a 9 to 5 job at a desk and I was also competing. I had to be at work at 7AM, so I would do cardio in the morning at 4:30 and then I would go to the office. Then, I'd get off at 4 and then I'd go to the gym. So basically I'd be gone working from 4AM until 10 at night and I did that for twelve weeks while preparing for my final bodybuilding show and that was when I was trying to take things to the next level. I didn't do much other than workout and go to work for three months.
Do you have any fitness goals for 2014?
Yeah. I'd like to get on another cover and I'd like to win a pro show. Those are usually my two big goals and hopefully I will knock both of them out in the next years.
In Part Two of our blog series with Ryan, we'll discover how he uses his meal management system from 6 Pack and what BSN supplements and foods he recommends for fitness freaks who are just getting their start and those who are looking to work their way to the top of competitive bodybuilding.