contest prep Steps And best cardio for fat loss

Nicknamed “The Pro Creator,” Hany Rambod has been constructing championship-winning physiques for the past 20 years. His ground-breaking FST-7 Training System has helped his clients win a total of 10 Olympia titles. Rambod also has the distinction of having trained two Mr. Olympia competitors, the only trainer in history to do so! Rambod’s roster of champions includes the seven of the past eight Mr. Olympia winners in Phil Heath (2011-13) and Jay Cutler (2006-07, 09-10).

Fascia Stretch Training

FST stands for Fascia Stretch Training and the 7 refers to the seven sets performed usually as the final exercise for a target body part. However, “sevens” are more than just a pump set. They are one detail of a full system designed to elicit maximal hormonal response and muscle hypertrophy


watch the youtube video above and share your comments about it with us….


here is the transcript of the video:


hany: what’s up everyone this is the truth podcast i’m your host hani rambod and we’re here to do a Q/A are you ready dave?

dave: i am ready again as always top seven questions or just seven questions around various topics

hany: we’ve been getting more questions on the youtube so basically i know you told me you were going in and hunting to see questions so guys if you want questions answered make sure you go in

there and comment and let us know what you want to see so that we can discuss it whether it’s a subject regarding competition or whether it’s something that has to do with training and we’ll go ahead and wrap a Q/A around it.

dave: yup this one specifically deals with contest prep but i mean again when you’re dieting for a show and you’re dieting to get in shape or just doing a cut i mean you can take bits and pieces of this notes and apply it to your regular life so i mean either way we’re gonna i mean we’re just gonna dive into these questions and then you just people that are listening dissect it the way you wanna dissect it as it applies to your life but contest prep here we go

number one for people doing their first show how do you know if there’s a they’re in a proper striking distance with a show date so for instance a 19 body fat person

is that an appropriate 12-week prep for males what about females what’s the appropriate starting point?

hany: okay that’s a good question. the way that i like to be able to build out my preps is i break them down by the pros and amateurs and the major difference is that with pros going into a pro show or from this most cases now it’s usually olympia it’s we’re trying to always be about building into a show like growing into a show with body parts because they’re so advanced in terms it’s not a body fat thing with the amateurs or if it’s somebody that’s just trying to do let’s say a photo shoot, you have what we call the executives that are getting ready for photo shoot and they’re like hey man i’m trying to do a cut  what we want to do is build a program that you don’t have to diet for six months because you’re not going to get a good result of what that physique is going to look like whether you’re a male or one male or female going into a show when your body fat’s too high so what we do is i break it up into two sections a subsection which is like a pre-cut and then going into a prep and the difference is something like let’s say the 19% BFP that you said what i would do is i would create a pre-cut and that pre-cut could last anywhere from eight to twelve weeks and then you’re gonna have a set amount of time off after that to let your body rest and your adrenals rest and then going into a prep because if you have too high of body fat and you go straight into a prep and you just continue to do this endless prep your body will stop responding. you’ll only be able to drop a certain percentage of body fat and that’s it you’ll never get you’re never going to get shredded you’re never going to get really conditioned so the key is to be able to get within that striking distance and that striking distance isn’t a percentage for me because i very seldom check my athlete’s body fat  i just go by a look but if we had to put numbers to things because a lot of people like numbers what it would be like is that hey let’s get into the low teens or let’s get into like the high single digits depending on if they’re bodybuilding or whether they’re men’s physique so you’re not trying to just get their body to not have love handles anymore you’re trying to get them literally get that inner muscular fat out so you need to get to that point where you can work on intramuscular fat and not this is just the sub-q fat

dave: that makes a lot of sense for sure i mean  i really don’t have anything to say that’s just a master class and uh getting ready for anything .

number two what is your advice to handle peak week mental physical rest preparing uh your week to be as least stressful as possible

hany: oh well i just went through this with a good client at  you know and a better friend dave rienzie he just ended up competing a couple of days or probably less than a week ago now because he did npc masters nationals and the mental physical rest, i haven’t worked with somebody that’s an amateur getting ready for a show to try to qualify for a pro card in a while it’s got to be at least four or five years because i’m always working with the olympia guys or the you know national like a pro guys you know whether it was hadi choopan getting ready for the regular shows um whether it was 212 or then when we moved him up to the open class to vancouver then you know phil get ready for the olympia or whether it was Andrei deiu getting ready for his pro debut it was that level because it’s been a while since you know i was the pro creator  because of the fact that that’s how i started off is that working with people that were trying to get their pro cards and back then it obviously was much much harder to get a pro card than it is now because you had a lot fewer divisions and you had less qualifiers now in certain classes you’re as good as top two and whatnot but the reason why i’m bringing dave up is because when you said mental it during that peak week being calm is really really important and all you coaches that are listening to this or watching this are going to realize who i’m talking about because you have your set clients that are super chill and super super calm like dave, dave is super charm just super chill and he’s the most even keel guy i know actually and now that we’ve actually been able to do a prep together and he hasn’t done a prep for six years and he had four surgeries he had two shoulder surgeries and two knee surgeries and he went into this um men’s classic bodybuilding division um classic what do they call it classic physique classic physique right i still a lot of people so call it classic bodybuilding because i like classic bodybuilding  it’s because it’s still bodybuilding  you know and i think physique is physique but anyways that’s just my personal opinion um but what he was able to do with being able to focus on the show make the adjustments it was a master class on keeping calm  and just following directions and not second guessing and like i said a lot of coaches know and some of the even athletes know how they can be anxiety ridden to the point where you’re creating your own obstacles and you’re your own worst enemy right and that cortisol starts to spike and guess what happens. it’s an invitation for somebody we know we talked about (tooth fairy’s cousin) he’s a tooth fairy’s cousin okay and it’s uh  the [ __ ] up fairy and she comes sometimes she comes a little sooner than you think too it’s not just the night before when you’re trying to dry out we’re talking about like you know weeks and weeks ahead and what happens is you’re creating an environment of chaos and people tend to wear their diet and when they need to wear their diet whether it’s you know you know what i’m talking about   you can be that way sometimes and when you wear your diet it really creates an uncomfortable situation not just with your own physical being you know your literally your body’s ability to burn body fat and try to recover and grow and do all the things that it’s supposed to do but it also creates a tornado effect around you and those type of people come in like a tasmanian devil and just [ __ ] [ __ ] up and for it literally it’s just it’s just self-sabotage  because that anxiety is not being distributed in the right way or burned out and then you know in terms of burning it off and being able to control it in a positive manner so what you do is you create this destructive path right so when we talk about peak week it really doesn’t start at peak week it starts before you even start writing getting ready for a show it starts with setting up an environment that understanding you’re making an understanding within your family your work your all the other environment you know the full for your full eco slash just ecosystem that you work within on a daily both business wise professional and in your family and personal and you need to be able to get everybody on board or those people that are not on board you need to like excommunicado them like you need to push them out and keep them out because they’re going to be a negative influence in your prep and those people are the ones that are going to be sabotaging you and trying to you know like get you to go out and party or drink or eat or whatever  or you’re or they’re going to be people that are just naysayers and you know you know the guys that smile and give you a high five at the gym but they really don’t get you know they want to see you like not even be in the top 10.  and those are the type those type of people so at the end of the day it’s creating this whole ecosystem and environment of positivity and staying super calm and bringing it back to dave he was able to do that and then what he did was able to execute the whole plan and he’s not the biggest guy he wasn’t the roundest guy he weighed in just under the limit for his class which was like 195 196 which his limit was 197 and he competed six seven years ago in bodybuilding but what he did was he was able to really execute and be able to hone in on the details that were going to make him better and each time he was able to do that it was like turning a screw that made him a little tighter a little tighter and was able to get something out of it because it’s not about how busy you are when you’re doing something or how painful it is to do cardio or diet or how miserable you are it’s the result you get out of doing those make those minor changes to get major results  and that’s where you want to be able to really lock in with a coach / contestant or you know an athlete that you’re working with i should say and be able to get the maximum results and luckily out of 25 or however many people he competed against he won pro card and i became the pro creator again because otherwise i think my pro creator card was going to expire you know he renewed it  i really needed it and so again congratulations to dave. he was able to execute with again four surgeries all these issues all kinds of stuff man that happened to this guy and he was able to uh to really bring it so again it was a pleasure working with somebody like that who can take that information and be able to actually utilize it and then it makes you want to do more for that person and be able to connect more because you see them actually applying it so that’s what’s really cool about that

dave: so it’s as equal mental as it is physical you have to go in with the right mindset

hany: actually it’s even more mental than it’s physical because the guys that are around we talk about this the guys that are gifted they were less likely to apply themselves because they never really had to  the ones that feel like they bring in the genetics and the hard work those are the ones that become super exceptional.

Dave: these are gems two in take notes people normally peak week is crazy for you as a coach who’s your most calm client?

Hany: oh that well that was just probably dave dave  man that was easy that was a roll up in one

Dave: what do you what’s your most difficult prep?

Hany:oh geez uh last year hadi choopan.because there were so many outside stresses. the fact of getting him here you know hit four years previously never was able to get here and then we finally got him here then when we got him here he doesn’t speak english he’s deaf where he has to read lips  he has to read lips in farsi and not like my americanized farsi. my broken farsi that i learned growing up  you know because i can’t read and write farsi so for all those that keep messaging me and you know on instagram and they think that i can read what you’re saying no no i can’t read any of it um but it was the most difficult prep because of all of those things then it was also layering in people that could help its handlers like literally helping him with getting food getting him to the gym or here or there to meet me because i was still running a business i still had you know other people that i had to work with a lot of different things that i had to do but i think that um that one comes to mind because it was probably the most recent but also because it was difficult in so many ways and things that i had no control over like the state department   immigration you know all of those things you know other countries uh you know governments um multiple governments and right now we’re going through the same thing right now  you know everyone’s asking me where where that’s at and it’s honestly it’s even more difficult this year because of covid and the political climate than it was before  so we’re he’s still prepping and he’s bigger and he’s better than he was last year in my opinion and but at the end of the day it’s one of those things where we’re just hoping we can get them here because we have all of the trials and tribulations that we had before plus covid  so we’re just looking forward to it but  so but that was definitely the hardest

Dave: did you have the decision made already or did you wait to see what he looked like when you finally got him over here between 212 and open class?

Hany: i waited till he got here and then took a look at what it was yes.

Hany: it was one of those things where it was like pull down try to go for the win with the 212. and pull down or try to maximize what it is and when i really spoke to him and we sat down and we talked he really said he was very emotional actually about it he says the mr olympia is going after the sandow  and at the end of the day that’s what you’re chasing and that’s what he wanted to chase and i think obviously he made the right decision  (he was top three right?) .a lot of i think  well not only that i think shaq went online saying that he thought he should have won  so big shaq big big shout out to big shaq all right diesel uh um  so that’s that’s that’s how that went all right

number four i see this a lot on show days why are people always laying down in the back especially with their feet does this help water retention?

Hany: yes and no  absolutely like getting off your feet is just going to help with you know not swelling up because especially if you’re on your feet for quite you know if you’re on your feet for a couple of minutes you know don’t piss sitting down you know okay my coach said because he’s you got those clients and you guys know who i’m talking about whether it’s you as an athlete or whether you’re a coach you have these situations where you turn around and you say something and you got to be so specific man because they’re going to turn around and you’re like hey man stay off your feet and you’re like hey what are you doing there and they’re like pissing sitting down and you’re like do you really need to do that oh man i got to stay off my feet bro and so um  that being said you need to make sure that you stay off your feet  (specially heavier they are right?)  well or does it matter no it doesn’t matter i think either way the rule goes either way i mean obviously if you’re doing men’s physique you don’t got to worry about it you’re worried you’re wearing uh trunks you know you’re wearing board shorts  so you don’t have to worry about it as much so you’re like i’m getting water with my legs i gotta put my feet up then i’m called [ __ ].

Dave: okay i mean it was a question you see it all the time and i don’t think anyone really has an answer to it apart from like the people that are actually part of it so..

Hany: so the simple answer is yes there is something to it so you want to try to stay off your feet as much as possible because you can get some swelling in your legs the longer you stay up especially when you are on a cold floor and you have you know i always tell everybody always bring flip-flops always bring flip-flops and you’ll have some guys and they’re literally getting on stage with socks on because their feet were cold they didn’t bring flip-flops and then they forget and i i’ve seen it all i’ve seen them go up on flip-flops i’ve seen them wear socks and try to get up on there. it’s a  so the key is to try to minimize how much you’re on your feet  and make sure you have something because those floors can get really really cold.

number five what is your favorite cardio machine for prep? because i know there’s a lot of people that avoid stairs because they they don’t want their legs to waste away or whatever. there’s no running in bodybuilding typically because of an injury risk and they’re too heavy to be running around anyways but what’s your favorite cardio machine for prep?

Hany: that’s actually not true.  okay so let’s try to dive into  some myth busting here. there’s times where i’ve had olympia level people run.  now how they run and where they run. i’ve had i’ve had people do it man i’ve had people do it and how they run where they run all of those things now are they going on long distance runs no no but you know i have had my athletes sprint i’ve had them do things where we’ve done uphill runs in sprints stuff that’s going to help with blood pulling and being able to really work the pump into the cardio i’m a huge advocate of the step mill i started having people use stepmil 20 years ago i’m probably the reason why ronnie coleman used stepmill because i had ronnie coleman’s girlfriend start using them so he bought one for her and he actually this is actually a true story what happened was alti was getting ready for a show and i was having her do the step mill he started using the stepmil and this is back in 2003 where he came in his heaviest so again did he lose his legs in 2003 no exactly but he liked it so much when he was doing cardio that he ended up buying two because he could do cardio with her and had him right in his a home gym so he could roll out of bed do whatever he whenever he you know he was supposed to do his cardio but he started using the step mill because i had alti using it and then when he started using it he started seeing more detail and he liked it so much that like i said he ended up buying two of them so favorite cardio piece of cardio equipment stepmil now do i use it all the time with all my clients no but it’s not because i’m worried about them losing their legs…

Dave:where is that even coming from?

Hany: that’s just from different people that just are being lazy and it’s just again this is all about myth busting  and it’s not it’s a matter of what’s best for them but i had jay using it in two thousand like..

Dave: he has three of them at his house

Hany: you know and we would go back and forth between stepmill and we would go back and forth between treadmill and stepmill and it’s one of those things that we’d always have to worry about his legs being flat especially because he had one leg that we had injured a long time ago and that was his um right leg and that was you know smaller than his left and we would always have to worry about that but that never was a problem even though we would use a step mill and we would just go back and forth just so it wouldn’t beat him up too much especially if we were doing longer cardio sessions and we would mix it up between treadmill and step mill but it didn’t it wasn’t a problem whatsoever.

Dave: right perfect myth busting number five  took care of some of those  

Hany: and for all you ladies out there if you are um doing cardio there are gonna be times where it’s gonna be much more actually beneficial for you to be able to do cardio on a run because sometimes they do start with higher body fat percentages and they have to come down and it does burn more calories so when you’re when you’re running versus just like a walking on a treadmill especially you know you see how the bodybuilders like to do it oh man 2.8  i mean and they’re holding onto the sides and that’s all you know that’s weak but so you’ll see some of the girls and some of the prep coaches will use running especially in the beginning to get them to get that body fat down  before they start to really um start to prep maybe it could be like the pre-prep that we talked about it could be i would be building that up into a system  and where the architecture of the program and the blueprint would have that designed into it to be able to get closer to that next level that my next milestone  that i’m trying to get them into to then leapfrog them into a prep

Dave: got it got it

number six will taking aminos break my fast before cardio? it’s another myth busting situation

hany: it’s yes or no yes it will but does it [ __ ] matter because at the end of the day what you’re trying to do is also minimize muscle loss. so the benefits you get out of taking an amino like obviously i recommend amino chemical my products because i like the eas i think the east do um do a great job with being anti-catabolic and i put it in in between meals but at the end of the day using that and trying to minimize that muscle loss how much are you gaining from that versus going into it completely deprived with body fat loss i feel that there’s more added benefit for muscle preservation  than there is in terms of body fat being possibly you know not maximized in terms of body fat loss being completely going in an empty stomach without any kind of aminos. so i feel like you’re actually doing yourself a disservice by doing that

dave:all right well this ties into number seven because they were kind of the same a little bit this is more of an uh exaggerated question off of six kind of like six a but

number seven benefits of taking branch chain amino acids or essential amino acids then extending your fast and then doing cardio with food versus fasted?

Hany: okay everybody knows i’m a huge advocate of doing fasted cardio. now there are times where whether it’s off season or whatnot i’ll add the in cardio post workout and again depending on the client and anybody who’s ever worked with me will tell you that there is no cookie cutter method it’s literally going off of what i see in regards to the pictures. at the end of the day when you’re adding in the bcaas eas ,  bcaas the way i like to stack my bcaas is like i created a product called aminoject. the aminoject got bcaas with five full grams of glutamine one gram of citrulline one gram of betaine um and then you have electrolytes in there that works really really well when you actually mix them with protein because you get a one plus one equals three effect because you get a synergistic effect that’s why i like mixing it in when there’s eaas as well now the ea’s could be from food it could be from isolate it could be from any of those type of products um and then the eaas which shown that really help with recovery and create more like an anabolic environment i like sipping that throughout the day during the workout in between meals two to three times a day so um and obviously i’ve added hydration factors in with the amino chem as well as putting in a also s7 to help with blood flow so that’s what i did with the amino chem now people don’t really understand how it works it’s more important to eat than take any of these supplements. food is your number one just go-to for. then when you add in supplements just like they say supplements is to supplement your diet to help with being able to accentuate the recovery and to build more muscle and (not replace your diet) no no and a lot of people go well i didn’t eat i’m just going to take a scoop of aminos and that’s wrong that’s not that’s wrong food would come first then if you can afford it then you want to be able to add it in and so eaas i feel are super important but if you’re already getting enough eas then the bcas will help complement the eaas to make them even more effective  so that’s why they’re still both products and not when you say oh well ea is because bcaas are in eas well yes but when you’re turning around and you’re adding in some added benefits of the other ingredients and you’re you’re that’s where you’re like i’m already getting the eas for my isolate but if i’m adding in the bcaas with it the studies show that  you’re going to get even more out of it than you would if it’s just one or the other.