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Mike Coy Interview

Article care of Don Lemmon

Mike Coy is one of the most dedicated, hardest working, goal oriented, striving individuals I know. He came to me as a client and we became friends. He says it's an honor to know me but I feel the same about him. He has everything a man could want or need to achieve anything he sets his mind to. He is onr of the few people I have taken the time to actually teach to become a trainer. Read on. He and I recently hooked up and went through an extensive training routine and nutrition course. I taught him the ropes. Was a good time. You'll see below.

DON: You're on my website with some pretty cool people. Are you excited? Is this more exciting than being Mr Olympia or in a magazine? If yes, are you crazy?
MIKE: Yes, I'm extemely excited about being on your web site.I think it's more exciting than being in a magazine because of all the different people from the different walks of life that your web site reaches out there. Not just whatever type depending on what magazine it is. Crazy? Well...depends on who you ask! I was a pro athlete for a couple of years. I was in the company of some very well recognized people. Wait a minute, maybe I did knock a screw loose!

DON: What was training for professional sports like? What was the schedule?
MIKE: Training was extremely brutal. Needless to say, my body was raked with pain for a long while! The schedules once I started were basically determined by my desire. I wanted to excell so I went out and trained all I could. Five to six nights a week plus weekend mornings. Practically everyday.

DON: What can you tell me about training and diet that you think most people do not realize.
MIKE: I think people dont realize that you dont have to be rocket scientist. Lots of people make it more complicated than it has to be on their own. And I was no exception! Also let me add that most people dont have a clue about the "power" behind separating your foods.

DON: What do you mean power?
MIKE: Separating your foods, regardless of ones' goals, makes the body run like a fine tuned machine. The results are limitless.

DON: Tell me the best, and the worst experience you have ever had in wrestling. Then the field of bodybuilding?
MIKE: Been a fantastic ride. The best thing I've experienced in my life was probably being a regular on T.V. Great experience. Being in front of 7,000 people was pretty cool too.

DON: The worst?
MIKE: I dont have enough time to explain! To sum it up I'll just say the extreme politics and watching people sell them selves out or do 'anything' for a "push". Sad really.

DON: Didnt you just win your first bodybuilding show? And wasnt it all natural?
MIKE: Yes sir, I did. It was held in Visalia, Ca. Promoted by the N.G.A and was very professionaly done. I won my weight class and took a second in the overall, thanks to you.

DON: What all have you done to get here?
MIKE: I've always pushed myself. Always striving to acquire more knowledge. Persistence is a must in any endeavor. And always believe in yourself. That is a definite strength.

DON: What is your weakness?
MIKE: Pancakes! Peanut butter! And not necessarily in that order!

DON: Diet. Tell me about the different fad diets you have tried.
MIKE: Gosh, I've tried so many! The Zone, Jay Robbs "Fat burning" diet, the Blood Type, high protein- low carb- no fat, high carb, just to name a few. What worked? That's easy. The "Know How" plan. By far the greatest means in which to eat. Numerous reasons.

DON: Do you power lift? What can you bench? Deadlift? What different routines have you tried? Split routines, full body workouts, and what really showed the best results?
MIKE: No, I've never power lifted per se. Always thought the possibility lies in there though. I have come to learn that most people never even need to perform these movements even with light weight to excel. I dont bench too often. My best was around 355 lbs. or so for a few of reps. I have always used a split routine for as long as I can remember until now too. I am training on a full body routine you gave me and am absolutely amazed at the results I am getting. Better than any split routine by leaps and bounds.

DON: Whole body? How often?
MIKE: Yea, whole body. Kinda wild huh? YOU put me on it! Seeing as how everyone trains using a split routine I know it sounds bizarre. But you know what? I train just three days a week and make more progress in a month than I used to in a year. Honestly.

DON: What is your dream? Career wise, family, home, car....
MIKE: My dream for a career is to be involved in the fitness world and educate people on the endless benefits of exercise, proper nutrition and supplementation. This is a passion of mine. I would like to have a family some day with that special someone, sure. But materialistic possessions arent the driving force in my life.

DON: Last CD bought, video rented, book read, movie saw and junk food eaten?
MIKE: Uh, let's see. Something 'rock', Lethal Weapon 4, Fabulously Fit by Frank Zane, The Blair Witch Project and my sisters birthday cake! Yum, yum.

DON: Are these the things you do to relax?
MIKE: Relax? I need to work on that! Even when I'm physically inactive, my mind is always going. But a good book is relaxing. So is a good cup of herbal tea. You know what I like to listen to when I want to unwind? Yanni. Very talented man and his music is very unique and beautiful.

DON: So tell me something about you that I do not already know and why you feel it's important everyone knows this about you.
MIKE: That even though I'm energetic and sometimes very intense, I use bodybuilding life style for the Zen-like betterment of character as well as the body. Most people say bodybuilders are ego maniacs, obessive fools and all round bozos and idiots.

DON: Is it true or is it a cliche?
MIKE: This is not at all true. Bodybuilders have the most disciplined lifestyle of anyone. More heart, dedication and desire. Bodybuilders come from all walks of life; doctors, lawyers. Some are idiots yes, some are less fortunate too. But I know many who are in their own mold.

DON: Who says one cant develope the body AND the mind? What supplements do you use?
MIKE: I currently use only good vitamins and liquid minerals, plus essential fats. Creatine only during contest prep at certain times as you suggested.

DON: What was your first and last 'real' job?
MIKE: Construction work.

DON: That has to be rough. A labor job and bodybuilding. How can you do both and progress?
MIKE: It could be. One must consume enough calories and tune in to the body so you can "feel" the overtraining syndromes approaching and adjust as necessary.

DON: You can achieve whatever you put your mind to. Just dont let fear stand in your way.
MIKE: No body thought I would become a pro athlete. But I did. And I quit on my own too. Noboy told me I had too. In fact I could still be. But those same people who said I couldn't also said  "What? Now bodybuilding?" And then I won a contest. Always believe in yourself...even when no one else does.

DON: Tell me about fear.
MIKE: None. Fear. It robs us of our goals, dreams & ultimately the person we wish to become. To realize your potential, fear must be conquered. Knowledge is where true power lies. Gaining the knowledge of the 'Know How,' conquering fear thus achieving victory over one's self.

DON: So why bodybuilding anyhow?
MIKE: Last summer I returned home to the San Francisco bay area after two years. After having experienced the ins and outs of pro sports, I left. I left angry, disappointed and let down. Nothing like having a dream go up in smoke before it is fulfilled. Needing to channel my energies elsewhere, I contemplated another goal. One that held long time interest. Stepping on to the stage in a body building contest.

DON: Eating right and exercising is one thing. Contest prep is all another game. It takes spirit, commitment and probably a vanity obsessed fool to immerse in it. Dont you think?
MIKE: Being the type of person who fully immerses himself into anything of great interest, I read everything I could get my hands on regarding the body, exercise and nutrition. Being confident about getting myself into contest condition, I concluded one day that I wasn't actually taking that "step" and signing up for a show. I was hesitant. Why?? Possibly, fear.... Fear of failure. BUT that is also what DRIVES me. You see, if you never TRY, only then have you actually failed. I think it's easier dealing with the devil we already know than dealing with the devil we don't know. After coming to this conclusion I put my foot down and found a contest, picked a date and made it MY goal. No turning back!

DON: So how long did it take you to prepare, what did you do and what were the goals?
MIKE: I gave myself sixteen weeks to see just how lean I could actually get. I altered my diet to what is popular in most all mainstream magazines nowadays. All I accomplished after six to eight weeks was the most lethargic, low energy leveled days of my life. Like I said, I have a physical job so I NEED energy. But increasing my calories certainly was not an option (that would be going against the "grain" of what the 'experts' say works). But something had to be done. So, I set out to find what exactly the pros did. Hoping it was available.

DON: Where did you look and what did you find?
MIKE: While aimlessly floating around the internet for a while, I stumbled across a rather intriguing site. A site where info was 'in your face,' blunt and to the point. I decided to get in contact with the 'founder,' state my problem and seek direction to achieve my goals. That founder was of course Don Lemmon and the site was called the "Know How". Giving you my diet, you totally restructured it, TOTALLY against the grain of mainstream fitness and other media. I took one look at it and thought to myself, 'What?!? Yeah RIGHT!' But wanna know something? Intuition told me to stick to the diet without variation. I had only eight weeks to go til show time. You told me take it or leave it but decide now. Risky. You bet. Any regrets? Hell no! Don Lemmon patiently worked with me all the way until show time (not to mention answering literally every one of the questions my hungry little mind came up with).

DON: You said increasing calories wasnt an option to you because of what you read in the magazines. What did I have you do first thing?
MIKE: Increase my calories. What was shocking was even though the calories were immediately increased, so were my energy levels and down went my body fat. As I added things I was told I shouldn't to by others 'in the know,' the fat just melted off. Fast! And DAILY! Truly amazing. No gimmicks or snake oil products. Just food, lots of work and a little faith. I no longer consult other people and disagree with everything I hear now.

DON: What happened from that point on? You didnt do any aerobics until almost the last minute did you? And isnt REAL butter fantastic at curbing the appetite?
MIKE: Oh man! Hell yeah! So the day finally came. I was ready. I had had my final conversation with you the evening prior calling from the hotel room. I entered the contest that morning knowing that if nothing else, I followed the diet to a T and I personally did all I could. I was at least finally walking on stage. Like you told me, 'You are a winner for just stepping up on a stage at all. Nobody loses. Remember, no one else in the audience has the nerve to get in their underwear and flex and dance around!' Maybe he is right I figured. I got on stage. A little heavier than I had planned to be. I mean I wanted a weight class lower and you forced me to enter a weight class higher. That is really why I was nervous. I remembered something else you said. 'The difference between a hero and a coward is not how they feel in the face of challenge. It's what they decide to do about the fear that makes them a winner.' Well guess what? I exited that stage that night a champion with the trophy for my weight class and 2nd place in the overall to a man 40 pounds heavier than myself! I really am a winner! Winning my weight class and taking a second in the overall! Holy cow! With Don and his "Know How", I had achieved what fear had at first make seem unachievable. I later realized I had something in my possession of greater value. Not the trophy. Not the knowledge. I had a gained friend.

DON: Thanks bro. It's been fun for sure. Next year it's an NPC event like the Nationals. Deal?
MIKE: Deal.

Don: I flew up and trained you. What was it like?
Mike: That was by far the most brutal, intense training session I have ever had!! More intense than anything I ever experienced before. I was literally trembling when it was over. And it only lasted 10 minutes!

Don: What did you learn about nutrition while I was there?
Mike: I learned lots of specifics. Eating cheese with beef to balance the sulfur and phosphorus for example. Interesting. What foods complement each other. Oh! And to start eating as soon as I make it out to the kitchen. When you awoke, and realised I had been up for a while, you laughingly slapped me on the back of my head and said " You always start eating as soon as you awake, Dillweed! laughs." LOL

Don: How about personal training? What conceptions did I help you realize?
Mike: You gave me different tips on training people of differing ages for example. Body builders vs. the average middle aged adult. Also how to deal with people and their preconceived notions based on all the
false literature that's out there. I learned lots in this area!

Don: Marketing yourself. What about that. Did you pick anything up?
Mike: Oh yea. Different ways in which to advertise, tips on flyers, business cards. Talking with people in a book store, for example, who were looking at different "diet" books. It's all in the approach eh Don?

Don: Yes it is. If you could sum up your goals before our meeting and what they are now, whats the difference?
Mike: That instead of just training people, I now more than ever want to teach these concepts of yours along with exercise. The passion is burning inside of me! THAT'S how bad I want to spread the gospel
according to St. Don. LOL

Don: That's good! St Don. What ran through your mind and what was your impression or... describe our first meeting
Mike: I was excited that we were finally going to meet. I knew we would get along but I feel that you and I really clicked. Our first meeting was at the Musclemania contest. We chit-chatted then did what two health concious people do...we went and ate! laughs. A few weeks later you flew up to S.F and we hung out for a few days. With out going into alot of detail, I was great to have you up.

Don: Thanks bro
Mike: Let me sum up by saying to those people who doubt you practice what you preach....You are definately the real deal. Straight up truth with no bull sh#t lagging behind. I thought I was going to have to
remind us when it was time to eat but that didn't happen once. And you (we) always ate exactly as you preach. Actually you have some nice and simple food combo's. Eggs w/ cottage cheese and Udo's oil! yum yum. (How many eggs DID we go through? laughs ) You're smart, funny and someone whom I am glad entered my life.

Don Lemmon's Nutritional and Exercise Know How

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