A:Originally born : Brasilia-Brasil!
Raised: Rome-Italy and Santiago de Chile...
Currently Living: Denver-CO
Q:Describe your journey from amateur bodybuilder to IFBB pro...
A:The journey was a long one and it still hasn’t’ ended. I don’t think it ever will. Originally the sport of Men’s Physique did not exist. It was only bodybuilding for the men. Now a days thankfully the NPC/IFBB has the Men’s Physique category in which the athletes are bigger, fully and muscular but aren’t as massive as the current IFBB Pro Bodybuilders. The journey began when I was 17. That’s when I started lifting for the very first time. I have my older brother to thank for that one. Once I transferred from Santiago de Chile to Colorado and I arrived in the U.S., I knew that if I wanted to be the best there would be a lot of sacrifice, sacrifice that I wasn’t ready for and some that were easy to leave behind. In 2010 I was part of the first ever Muscle and Fitness Male Model Cover Search which was somewhat the introduction for the Men’s Physique category. That year I placed 3rd out of 89 other men. Right after that year the MPD division was introduced and I knew that I would fit in it perfectly as I didn’t want to be huge but still wanted to maintain an athletic look to myself. In 2011 I was the 3rd ever Men’s Physique Pro and the first ever Brazilian to turn Pro in this division. Since then I have been in more than 10 IFBB pro shows and at the first 2013 Men's Physique Mr Olympia.
Q:You seem to hold your mass as you drop body fat. What's your key?
A: There’s so much knowledge out there regarding this topic and unfortunately many think and believe you have to be in huge amounts of steroids and growth hormone to achieve this. In all reality all you need to do is keep your nutrition in check; which 80% of athletes on their off-season do not and also monitor your activity level. May seem hard and confusing at first, but in all reality anything that is health and fitness is all habit. Once it becomes habit, you shouldn’t even think about what you are doing. The challenge at first is knowing the exact amount of calories you should consume to grow and the exact amount of calories to lose weight and body fat. Once you have an estimate of these you simply add calories slowly from good quality sources and monitor your weight. If you start gaining too much weight too fast you know you aren’t adding quality muscle so decrease the amount of food on your daily intake. If you remain the same than do the opposite and add a few hundred more calories daily. The key is to slowly add weight and not binge eat everything in sight. The other concept is your activity level. If you don’t gain weight fast then don’t do too much cardio, if you gain weight fast then add a few more sessions of cardio per week. Adding mass is also about keeping your training intense. What does that mean? Means that you have to adjust your volume and intensity for your goals. The body wont’ grow if you don’t stress it and create an inflammation for it to repair itself. Hence it’s crucial to try and give it your best inside the gym to give a reason for the body to grow. Knowing your body over time will help people understand all of this better as you need to be in sync with it and know how to eat for your goals and train for them as well. Another advice I can give the readers is to do their best to stick to heavy compound exercises like: squats, deadlifts, military presses, etc. Exercises that involve large muscle and takes a good amount of energy to move. In the off-season one can eat more carbs so there’s no reason why one shouldn’t be able to lift heavier weights. But I always say, lift smart, not with ego.
Q:Excellent advice. Can you detail your pre contest diet and workout routine?
A:Like any pre-contest prep diet it changes regularly. This is needed in order to keep the body burning body fat. The body is a very intuitive system. It’s got it’s own plans and thoughts, so when you start telling it you need to lose bodyfat and keep muscle it has it’s own plans. For this reason one must always stay 2 steps ahead of it and keep it guessing. I don’t have a strict pre-contest diet as again everything changes from prep to prep but there are a few things I keep as a must all the time.
· I keep my protein intake to 1.3g/ lbs of weight.
· I always consume my larger carbohydrate meals before and after training / for energy and recovery
· I enjoy doing faster LISS cardio in the morning rather than HITT or any type of cardio post training
· I don’t take any type of thermogenics until I am 1 month out from a competition or shot.
· I slowly decrease my calories once my weight as plateaued for 2 weeks straight
· Drink a minimum of a gallon of water daily
· And most important. I worry about myself. I don’t’ look at others and compare , after all it’s my journey, no one elses.
My workout plan always remains the same. Basically. Lift as heavy and smart as I can. Meaning, I worry about three things when I train.
1. FORM - Keep the best form possible when lifting any weight.
2. SPEED - Don't lift or allow the weight to pull you down 2 seconds 'up' 3' seconds down
3. WEIGHT - Choose a weight that allows you to lift with the right form and use the right speed that challenges me.
Q:How did the fitness modeling begin and where have you been featured?
A: My modeling journey began around the same time I started lifting. I wanted to increase my name and I knew that fitness modeling would be a great way to do so. It all started on Facebook, actually. The photographer for Exercise for Men had seen me on there and asked me if I wanted to travel to San Diego and shoot for the magazine. Not only that, but they gave me the chance to write the article too as I was going to school for kinesiology. Now a days, I believe I have been featured in most major magazines like Muscle & Fitness, Muscle & Body, and Muscular Development. That’s not the end of it either, I currently hold 3 covers and other international publications around the globe. Overall I have over 20 nationals ads, 5 internationals ads and more.
Q:How did you hook up with Optimum Nutrition?
A:That was an experience on itself. I remember it clearly. It was back in 2009 when I decided to simply check out what ON products were new to the website. It was about 2A.M. Just one of those night that you go browsing for random things over the internet. As I landed on the Optimum Nutrition website I website I recalled seeing the “Athletes” tab and decided to click on it. At the bottom of that page there was a section were one could submit their application with pictures. So I was l like, “What the hell, why not, got nothing to lose anyway”. Two weeks later I received an email from them telling me they wanted me to join the team/family. One of those unforgettable moments in life, that’s for sure. From there one I have been building my name with them. That’s why I tell everyone, go for it. You never know what can come out of it.
Q:How is the online coaching business?
A: It’s fantastic! One of the best things I could have done. Helping people globally is a satisfaction on it’s own as well. I have coached, contest prepped and helped more than a few hundred people online. I'm most excited about my new project coming out here pretty soon were members will be able to watch my training, eating and supplementation habits. I’ll be teaching people how to train, eat and supplement correctly. Definitely a new step for www.alexcarneiro.com
Q:Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
A:Hopefully alive! Ha ha... I don’t’ ever know exactly what will happen the day of tomorrow and if I start worrying too much where I will be I forget to enjoy the present. However to answer that questions I would like to continue my work with television as I have been currently working with Telemundo having my own fitness segment. Expanding on that would be great. Additionally, now I have a big project with my new website and a new membership section. I would love to be able in 5 years to say it was a great success and have videos being filmed to educate and show others everything I know so it can be passed down the line. Next year I’m going to be competing more so that I can quality for the Mr. Olympia. Honestly as long as I am healthy, alive and happy with life I’ll be happy where I am 5 years from now.
Q:Can you give us all of your social media handles?
Official Website: WWW.ALEXCARNEIRO.COM