“Not until I was better educated did I realize how much sacrifice there was in bodybuilding and how the average person does not understand the degree of it.”
Profile Interview, Bobby Obradovitch
Bobby Obradovitch is a 26-year-old bodybuilder originally from Los Alamitos, Calif, just a little south and east of Los Angeles. He now lives in Huntington Beach and manages a Nutrition Zone store in Laguna Hills, about halfway between LA and San Diego. Bobby’s store was –literally – the very first Nutrition Zone we set up as Big Back Grips dealer. Even before that, Bobby had told us he was an avid Big Back Grips fan. Then we kept bumping into him at Metroflex Long Beach, the area’s most hardcore gym – and it was true. He uses them for practically everything. Since then, Metroflex co-owner Chris Albert started training Bobby for his first competition and we asked if he was interested in sponsorship, and we are officially sponsoring Bobby for his first contest. We finally had some time to shoot some pics and workout videos. And ask Bobby a few questions.
BBG: First, tell us about your first show upcoming. What show, when is it, and most important, what’s it like getting ready?
Bobby: My first show will be April 14th at the NPC Amateur Grand Prix in LA. You hear it all the time, but getting ready for the show for me has been more mental then it has been physical. Don’t get me wrong, my trainer Chris kills me every single workout, but it’s the mental aspect of staying true to the quest that you really have to strive for. Yes, you have to make sure you cook/eat all your meals, get to the gym, get the cardio in – and just handle all the sacrifices you have to make in order to be the best you can. No stone un-turned right? At the end of the day, I love it. You have to want to do it.
Big Back Grips are not just for back.
BBG: We know Chris’s training methods, and he is truly one of the most aggressive, involved and caring trainers we know. Caring as in, “I care enough to make them cry,” is how he sometimes puts it. What’s it like to train under Chris?
Bobby: Before training with Chris, I thought I trained really hard. I was wrong. I’ve been going to Metroflex Gym in Long Beach since last summer, but not until a few months back did I actually contact Chris abouthim doing my contest prep and training me for my first show. He agreed right away. Going into it I was really interested to see his training methods and what it will do to my body. He is not only extremely intelligent with nutrition but he is the same with his training techniques. He has shown me so many different variations of exercises that have improved my physique immensely. One big problem I had with my training was I was mentally giving up before my body was physically ready to give up. Training with Chris has made me go beyond what I thought my mind and body was capable of. Sometimes after his workouts I have to go home and lay down with ice packs on my legs for the rest of the day because I’m that exhausted from the workout. In such a short period of time working with Chris he has been able to put some great size and detail to my legs (which was a main focus) and also more detail to my back. I feel very confident working with Chris and his knowledge seems endless. He’s also one of the nicest guys, really cares about his clients/friends. It’s a pleasure to work with him.
BBG: What are your stats currently? What are you shooting for in April?
Bobby: Well, it’s funny because in the past I was always SO concerned and obsessed about my weight and body fat. It was a mental blockade for me, and I think it was a distraction. I rarely weigh myself or get my body fat tested, but right now I’m 7 weeks out from the show and I’m about 260lbs. If I had to guess my BF, I’d say 10% or under. We will check when it get’s closer to the show. Before the diet, my starting weight was 280lbs. Come April, we talked about me being between the 230 – 240lb range, shredded of course J.
BBG: Of course! So give us a little background on your training history. Was it always part of your life? How much of your life is devoted to it?
Bobby: Well, in high school I played basketball, so I was always fit and in shape. I started to pick up weights at 18 years old. The main reason I did was because I was too skinny with no muscle on me. I always had family and friends call me a bean pole. Ha-ha. After about 2 years I started really getting into “serious” bodybuilding. I loved being in the gym and watching my body transform. That’s when the desire to compete kicked in. My friend and I had gone every year to the Mr. Olympia weekend in Vegas since 2006 and we came home more motivated then ever! I started to see great muscle growth over the years, and possible potential in it. I have a really big frame so I’ve been spending many years filling it out. Before stepping on stage I wanted to make sure I was bringing a very competitive physique. I really do live the lifestyle in every sense of the word. You will find me at the gym on a Saturday night, you will call me and I could possibly be cooking my 6th meal of the day. Ha-ha. I have a loving and supportive girlfriend Lindsey who believes in my goals and dreams. Which is really rare because bodybuilding, let’s face it, is a very selfish sport. I also work and manage a store for the best supplement company in the industry, Nutrition Zone. I’m a blessed man!
BBG: Now we know first-hand that you use BBG for everything. Or nearly so. What did you use before BBGs and why did you settle on BBGs? How do they help your workout?
Bobby: I’ve used them all, weight lifting gloves, lifting straps, you name it. I have really big hands so it’s hard to find gloves, plus they are always tearing and smell after a while. It’s also a pain in the butt to put them on. Weight lifting straps I used for a while but even those would kill my wrists when getting up in the heavier weights. Then, I found the BBGs and I haven’t looked back!! I truly do use them for every workout. They give me better support then gloves, grip strength of straps, and the convenience of them is awesome! I’m even getting my Mom a pair for those tough pickle jars at home! Ha-ha.
BBG: Well, this writer’s mother uses them for that too. So what brought you into the world of lifting and when? What are your goals in bodybuilding beyond April?
Bobby: Once I got into lifting I really got motivated by the way my body could transform and the way it looked. Following the bodybuilding world and the pros, I thought it was awesome because these guys truly looked super-human. Not until I was better educated did I realize how much sacrifice there was in it and how the average person does not understand the degree of it as well. The dedication that is needed day in and day out is out of this world. I think bodybuilding has to be in someone’s heart to do it. They really have to want to do it, and love it at the same time. I really do. As for my goals past April, I will be talking with Chris about that but I definitely want to take a little time off and put on more size. Being that I am 6’3 with a big frame, let’s just say I’m going to have a fun and BIG off-season. Ultimately, I would love to step on that National level stage and try and battle it out eventually. One day at a time, but I’d be foolish if I’m not planning ahead.
Bobby goes for max intensity.
BBG: What is the workout atmosphere like at Metroflex Long Beach? Do you train anywhere else?
The atmosphere at Metroflex is none that I had ever experienced at a gym. Everyone there is not only a close family, but are willing to help each other out and have a HARDCORE workout. We just slap on someone’sIPOD over the loud speakers there and kill it! People are really supportive there, when you’re doing a heavy set of squats or something else, if they are walking by you will hear them screaming at you to push hard! It’s a great place. If you have not trained there and live around the area, you need to check it out. I live in Huntington Beach, so unfortunately it would be a little bit of a drive to train there everyday. So for now, I train there on the weekends. I look forward every weekend on going there. I switch it up, but usually train at 24 Hour Fitness’s that are around my area.
BBG: What about sports outside of lifting?
Bobby: Before settling into my bodybuilding endeavor I was a big athlete and loved playing anything. From basketball, volleyball, hockey, baseball, soccer. I was very active and when someone wanted to play a sport I was there. Being a 280-pound bodybuilder now it can some what slow you down a bit ha-ha, but I try and keep very agile even though I’m much bigger guy now. Right now bodybuilding is my sport of focus if you will.
BBG: What are your biggest accomplishments in your workout history so far?
Bobby: Well, since this is my first show I don’t have any stage accomplishments yet. In the gym though I love lifting heavy, but in a way that benefits me as a bodybuilding. You will RARELY see me in the gym lifting single-rep maxes because I feel that’s more geared towards a power lifter and not a bodybuilder. Let’s just say for a long limbed fellow like myself I have a pretty respectable bench press, and my squats “ain’t” too bad either. J I won’t boast though, maybe leave it for a video sometime! Either way, everyone out there — TRAIN HARD and USE YOUR GRIPS!
BBG: What is your workout schedule like?
Bobby: Right now I am on a 2-day on and 1-day off schedule. Perfect recovery time for me right now! Lately, the workouts have been really intense as we get closer to the show.
BBG: What about your diet?
Bobby: Well, I won’t reveal all of Chris’s Nutritional Secrets, but my protein is extremely high right now. It’s about 12oz. of either turkey or some other protein 7 times a day. I am doing a carb cycle right now and Chris is seeing how my body reacts to different things. I’m pretty moderate in carbs right now. I am a bigger guy so I need it to keep me full. My diet has been changing weekly and sometimes even daily.
BBG: What are your favorite exercises or body parts to work? What do you consider your best body part? Do have a body part that’s especially challenging to make headway on?
Bobby: Right now my favorite body part to train is legs, just for the sheer fact that it is my weaker body part. But they have vastly improved and I feel pretty confident with them, but I really want to put some really good size and detail to them. I definitely need more attention to hamstrings as well. I consider my shoulders to be my best body part. I’ve always had a very broad frame and they have really taken off in size over the years.
BBG: If someone were going to work out with you, what are they in for, what’s your workout style? What would you want from a partner?
Bobby: By nature I guess you can say I love lifting heavy. For the period of time I set foot in the gym it’s about business and really training hard. However, you will ALWAYS see me smiling and having fun though. I believe you should be able to find a split second to laugh and have a good time. Make training fun! Over the past few months Chris has instilled “Time under tension” in a lot of my workouts. Meaning when I’m not lifting extremely heavy, I should be constantly putting my muscles under distress. So a workout partner would probably be looking at short rest periods, heavy weight, putting a lot of stress and focus on the muscle, going to failure on exercises. Last but not least, me screaming at them to push harder and forcing reps out of them, because that’s what I would expect in return. In the past I have found it pretty difficult to find consistent workout partners not because of strength but because of mental stand point. What I mean is knowing how hard to push, recognize when I need help, recognize when my body can go farther, AND staying on a consistent schedule. Not that they were bad workout partners, it’s just we were on two different mental levels, and maybe personal life levels.
BBG: Finally, can you give us your workout for just one body part: back or legs, shoulders, chest or arms, even abs. Just pick your favorites.
Bobby: How about shoulders!
- Standing Military Presses or DB presses – 4 sets, 8-12 rep range
- Superset: DB side laterals/rear delt raises/front raises — All 15 reps, 4 sets
- Barbell Front Raises: 15 reps, 4 sets
- Rear Delt Flys on Machine: 12-15 reps, 3 sets
- And if I still haven’t had enough I will just do a cable side laterals to failure.