Fitness Success Stories
Lifetime of Lifting Produces Archery Gold
To many involved in the sport of bodybuilding, the name of Roy Rose will be familiar as the articulate and polished man at the microphone during the '90s, emceeing world-wide at the IFBB's World Titles, amateur and professional, and at the Ms. Olympia.
Not so well known outside his own country of Australia is a career of outstanding sporting achievements, including state honors in cricket, his country's national sport, and equally successful endeavors as a basketball player, rugby footballer and a competitive professional sprinter. His crowning achievement was representing Australia in archery at the 1976 Olympics - until 2002.
Roy returned to the sport of archery after almost three decades and, in the past two years, amassed over 40 state and national records in his age division and, at 62, won two gold and two bronze medals at the 2002 World Masters Championships, where he defeated the legendary Hans Wright, one of archery's all time greats.
Roy (on the left) with Hans Wright, World and Olympic record holder in the '60s and '70s -- the finest archer of his generation, now 66
Roy's weight training began in the '60s, became more rigorous when he was selected for the Australian Olympic team, and continues to the present day. He and Clarence Bass became friends two decades ago and they have been discussing weight training, aerobics and diet ever since. He visited Clarence and Carol in Albuquerque in 1992.
Roy's physical condition proved a major weapon in his recent quest for World Championship honors. Many competitors in his age division were literally "old men" and as such, were not really competitive; even the top aspirants, in most cases, were surprised at his physical well being. Some even amiably questioned his age.
"As the four days of shooting progressed my years and years of weigh training really began to pay off," says Roy -- with gold medals in the field archery events shot on the final two days. Archery is not essentially a strength sport, being regarded by the elite as more a mental challenge, but the reality of pulling back 40 pounds and holding steady to aim continuously, for a number of days, clearly introduces a major fitness aspect for master-age competitors.
Considering that Roy commenced his archery career in the '60s as a 160 pound, 5-foot-9, rather lean young man, pretty much devoid of muscle, his present day 188 pounds, 45 inch chest, 16 inch arms and calves and a very acceptable 33 inch waist, show what can be achieved with conscientious training and a sensible diet. "Surprisingly, at this point," says Roy, "my strength levels are just about as high as ever, and the benefits of weight training are obviously not just the winning of world archery titles, but in having a great feeling of well being, and pretty much able to do everything I could 30 years ago - still far too quick for my grandchildren over a 50 meter sprint!!"
Good on you, Roy. Keep training and competing. (See below)
Senior Aussie Archer Conquers New
Our longtime Australian bodybuilding friend Roy Rose has appeared on the page before (see above). Roy, now 66, has had a lifetime of success in sports, most recently in a comeback performance in archery. He represented Australia in archery at the 1976 Olympics and, after three decades away from he sport, took up the Olympic recurve bow again in 60, amassed over 40 state and national records in his age division and, at 62, won two gold and two bronze medals at the World Masters Championships. Well, he's back again, in a more competitive division--with a compound bow.
In mid-2005, Roy switched to the Compound Bow Division, a more heavily populated area of the sport, and even more competitive with a multitude of top class archers. Because the cam or wheel system on the compound bow allows the archer to hold a decreased weight at full draw, it is a logical and extremely efficient weapon for veteran shooters, and hence the competition both nationally and internationally is widespread and intense.
In a division for 55 year-plus competitors, Roy was an old newbie and an underdog. His physical strength appeared less of an advantage, and his reputation as a world champion recurver didn't count for much against long-term compounders of vast experience.
The compound bow shooting process, which incorporates the use of a metal release aid, as opposed to the Olympic bow's finger release, requires a very different touch, although many of the requirements of the recurve bow--stance, follow through and mental stress--remain.
Roy draws back the compound bow. Note the thickness of his arms.
Listen to Roy talk about his experience in the new division:
"Many archers of my vintage take up the compound bow because it allows them to continue in the sport they love, but their goals are usually recreational in nature; the competitive side remains for those who have spent many years (in some cases their whole archery lives) as compound bow devotees.
"My intentions, however, were certainly not recreational. I probably don't have a recreational bone in my body. Looking on my age as of little consequence against mostly non-lifters, I set about mastering this new challenge, confident that I could be competitive. I knew, of course, that my aspirations would take a monumental degree of focus, time, hard work, and very conscientious practice."
Now, in just one year with a compound bow, Roy has defied the odds of stiffer and younger competition bringing his ranking into the top few in Australia, winning regional and state honors, and (in April 2006) producing a surprising (to competitors who see the art of compound precision as a journey of many years duration) elite score of 1300 in the Australian Capital Territorial Championships.
"I am a realist," says Roy. "I do concede that age is a factor at this time in my life. But I firmly believe that continued training and sensible diet allied to a strong mental approach can yield very considerable results which defy the conventional premise that one should adjourn to the rocking chair, accept physical disintegration, and prepare to meet one's maker."
Right on Roy. Keep challenging yourself!
Runner Sees Dramatic Change in Leanness
Dear Mr. Bass,
I am not sure if you remember me, but I wrote you in August of 2000 regarding my then goal of running a marathon and I wrote you again this year when I moved to Georgia and started the Clayton Regional Law Enforcement Academy.
Now that the hassles of moving from Idaho to Georgia, starting a new job, and buying a new house are behind me, I have seriously shifted focus from distance running to more mass-building/strength training, along with stretching for flexibility. I have also been taking Krav Maga (a defensive tactics course) and have cut back my running to just two sessions per week of intervals on the treadmill, based loosely on your treadmill program in Lean for Life. As a police officer, I still need to maintain my speed and ability to run, but I also need size and strength.
If you remember, I ran the Portland Marathon on October 1, 2000 with a horrible 13%, which was confirmed by Dr. Vernon Hoeger at the Human Performance lab at Boise State University on September 15, 2000. It is a shame that 13% got me an "excellent" rating back then.
Before I changed my focus from distance running to more pure fitness, I ate a typical "runner's diet." Like most recreational runners, I committed the sin of excess by eating anything and as much of it as I wanted of pasta, pizza, and burgers knowing that the mileage I was doing (upwards of 100 miles per week) would burn away all those calories. Though I was putting in all those miles, I never seemed to get as lean as I wanted.
Now that I am a police officer, the need to be in the best shape possible was no longer a luxury to dream about, it was something that my life could very well depend on. So, with my wife's blessing (she's from Denmark, a country well-known for it's cheese and pork industries), I switched from the above "runner's diet" to a more "Ripped" style of eating, that you recommend: whole grains, unprocessed foods, fruits and vegetables. I also followed the conventional wisdom of eating more meals, but smaller quantities and started drinking two whey protein drinks mixed with skim milk each day.
The most important part, though, is that I got serious about the third prong of the Ripped approach and began to follow a well designed program of weight training based on things not only from your Ripped books, Lean for Life and Challenge Yourself, but bits and pieces of wisdom from a range of people from Mike Mentzer and Arnold to Covert Bailey, George Sheehan and other "non-bodybuilders." Before, my training consisted of only a haphazard schedule of push-ups, sit-ups and pull-ups and miles and miles and miles of running.
Although I do not have a human performance lab test to confirm the exact results, since my switch to a more "ripped" style of eating, weight training and much less running, my leanness has improved dramatically. (MY best guessimate is that bodyfat is now around 6-7%). I weigh only one pound less than I did when I ran the marathon, but my waist measurement is an UNBELIEVABLE 5 inches smaller! (from a waist size of 36 to 31). I can see the obvious difference in my arms and legs (I can almost make out an ab or two). I was what Covert Bailey called "Thin-fat." While I was fairly healthy, I was more "skinny" than I was lean. I am wearing smaller clothes now, but I am in much better shape.(My Karate instructor, who usually greets me with "Hello, Officer," last night added, "Hey, you look like youíve been hitting the weights." What an ego boost!)
The irony is that I used to think bodybuilders and weightlifters were "heavy" and "sluggish-looking" but Iím in better shape, not only in looks and clothes size, but I feel more energetic, much more light on my feet, now that I am hoisting iron!
My weight program is currently four days a week, based loosely on things from Ripped 1,2, and 3, Lean for Life and Challenge Yourself. I am looking forward to training "even less" than I do now and still improving.
Tell that to all those runners who think that running makes them lean! I had been a hard-core endurance athlete (triathlons, biathlons, running, bicycle racing) for most of my life and I have never achieved this level of "pure" fitness and have never gotten anywhere near as lean as I have since I started eating "ripped" and hitting the weights. I have made these improvements in only 14 weeks! And it is all your fault! Look for the bill in your mailbox for my new wardrobe!!
above- about 179lbs,
13% bodyfat....around May of 2000
Thank you for the opportunity to share my "success" with your readers. Although I am hesitant to use the word "Success" as it seems to indicate to me the end of something and I am just really only starting out on the path total fitness. Following your footsteps, I have absolutely no doubts I will make it!
I'll keep you posted on my future "successes" as well!
With much respect and with many thanks,
R. Mark Williamson
Transformed by Evo Lifestyle
One day my Uncle (overly honest sometimes) looked at me and said, "You're fat!" I replied, "What?, I'm getting fat?" he said, "No, you ARE FAT!" Coming from him I new he was telling the truth, no one else had said anything, and I just didn't notice. That day I went home, took a look in the mirror and decided to make a change. I was around 25% bodyfat and my waist was a burly 38 inches!
I tried everything on the market to lose it quick. Pills, Drinks, Fads, Ab Rollers, etc. I got fatter. I would exercise half-heartedly a couple days per week and think I was improving. I would justify my trips to the fast food joints by thinking I was "bulking-up" (I was bulking up all right) or I would say, "I worked out today I'll burn it off!!!!
One evening I was watching a program on PBS or the The
Learning Channel, one of them. And there was a special about the human
evolution. It compared humans of today to our ancient ancestors, stating that
our physiologies are almost identical but our rate of disease had increase and
our muscular density and our overall level of conditioning and sensitivity to
our environment had dramatically decreased. There was a reference to the
work involved in obtaining the three basic needs: food, clothing and
shelter. The hunter and gatherer had to work for these needs. Modern
day man has these readily accessible to him therefore we have added a fourth
basic need....Exercise. They had to exercise to obtain their needs,
we do not. They ate small amounts of food during the day whenever they
found it, they had to track and sprint to catch food, they built shelters with
their bare hands, and hunted animals to make their clothing. They were
rarely idle and their diet consisted of foods that grew naturally or had to be
caught. I tease people now that ask me how to eat, I say "if it
didn't grow naturally 5000 years ago or if you don't have to catch it don't eat
it!" How much ice cream would you eat if you had to make it from scratch?
On February 15th 2000 I began to implement this lifestyle.
Doing anything in my power to mimic it in today's society. I walked
everywhere I went, sprinted instead of jogging, eating fish instead of red meat,
consuming small meals of fruit, veggies and legumes throughout the day,
sometimes eating up to 8 times. My workouts consisted of multi-muscle
work-outs (Deadlifts, Squats, Barbell Rows, Snatch etc) and I stuck with it. Before too long I was feeling great, looking better and most importantly,
thinking more clearly and efficiently. My mood was enhanced dramatically
and my energy level rose almost TOO high. I was drinking nothing but lots
and lots of water and before long my 12 hour work day became a 6 hour work day.
I was never hungry. I could not wait to exercise. My body had
On May 9th, less than 90 days later, without killing myself
physically or depriving my caloric intake, my weight had dropped to 165 pounds,
my waist was under 30, my squat over 400 pounds and deadlift just under 500.
My muscles were strong yet lean and my confidence went through the roof.
I have maintained a bodyfat of under 10% and I continue to get stronger. The day
someone at the gym told me my abs looked awesome and asked what I was doing?...I
cried. I share this with all your readers not to say "LOOK WHAT I
Yours in Good Health,
Ripped Enterprises, P.O. Box 51236, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Copyright © 2006 - 2021 Clarence and Carol Bass. All rights reserved.