How did PJ Braun get started with bodybuilding?
I grew up in New Fairfield, CT, where I played football for as long as I can remember. I joined the Pop-Warner league in fifth grade and when I got to High School, I already had NFL aspirations. There was one problem with this dream; I wasn’t big enough to play with the big boys. My mom made the suggestion for me to call my biological father and ask for his help because he wanted to be a bodybuilder at one time and he could probably show me how I could improve.
I never saw my father because my parents were divorced when I was eight, and he had a new family. I made the call to him anyway and he was exited to teach me what he himself loved. I remember being happy just to spend time with him, I had missed him so much through the years. He would pick me up from school and take me to the local gym, needless to say I was hooked. I loved everything about training; I read every book and bodybuilding magazine that I could get my hands on, plus, I got to bond with my father. For Christmas that year, he gave me his childhood weight set, ancient shit you’ll never see in a gym, but I put it in my bedroom and I would workout constantly…When I was bad, my parents wouldn’t ground me, they’d take away my weights!
One day my father didn’t show up at school to pick me up for our workout, I walked to the gym that day. He didn’t show the next day either, so I called to see what happened and he explained that he wouldn’t have time to train with me anymore, but he said I would be just fine on my own. I was broken-hearted, he had abandoned me AGAIN! My tears quickly turned to determination, and I couldn’t stop thinking about something my father had said to me… “there’s always someone bigger and better”. I decided that I was going to be the biggest and the best!
Where does your motivation come from?
I have a strong and overwhelming desire to be the best that I can be in everything in life. I don’t think there is anything cooler than being able to say you’re the best at something weather its chess, fencing, swimming,dancing, etc…
What workout routine has worked best for you?
I respond well to volume! A typical leg workout for me would look something like this:
Lying ham curls- 6 sets of 15
Seated ham curls 4 sets of 15-20
Standing single leg ham curls 4 sets of 12-15 reps
Squats- 3 sets of 5-8 and 3 sets of 8-10
Close stance leg press- 5 sets of 20-25 reps
Db plié squats- 4 sets of 15-20
Leg extensions 5-7 sets of 15-20 reps
All done at a very fast pace.
If you have to pick only 3 exercises, what would they be and why?
Squats- works your entire body like no other, great for packing on muscle and burning calories, deadlifts- another great exercise for building muscle and burning calories. Db side lateral raises- you can never be TOO WIDE!
What is your diet like?
Off season I eat whatever I want, I have a fast metabolism. My current precontest diet at 4 weeks out is
Meal 1- 25g pro liquid egg whites and 8oz ground turkey with 3 slices ezekeil bread and a grapefruit
Meal 2- 10oz white fish and a cup dry measure white rice
Meal 3- 50g whey isolate and 50g karbolyn with 20g glutamine (post workout)
Meal 4- repeat meal 2
Meal 5- 10oz lean ed meat and a cup asparagus
Meal 6- 70g whey and 1 tbs all natural Almond Butter
They say that the pre and post-workout meals are the most vital meals for the day, what do yours consist of?
When trying to cut down do you prefer to use HIIT or just normal cardio?
HIIT but I do mix it up based on how you feel. Ihave most of my clients do HIIT as well
What is your supplementation like?
Evening primrose oil
Alpha lipoic acid before all carb meals
L-Carnatine in tartrate form before cardio
Glutamine post workout
I use all the products by my sponsor IRON MAG LABS
I never like quoting others. I don’t find inspiration in things others say that I have never met or have not effected my life. Sometimes someone close to me will say something profound. One day my good friend Evan Centopani said to me, “outside circumstance are dictated through inner thoughts” that stuck with me deeply.
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