Tom Venuto October 15th Bodybuilding Competition Details And Photos


Monday, October 17th, 2005. I’ve finally “recovered” from Saturday’s competition (I slept like you wouldn’t believe Saturday & Sunday night, plus a couple of naps in between… it takes a lot out of you!) I also had a couple of good “cheat meals,” but today I’m right back to training and dieting for the next competition October 29th. Before I start blogging this week’s diet and workouts, today I’m simply going to post a few photos and details about Saturday’s show.

As Murphy’s law would have it, the majority of the photographs of the prejudging did not come out too well (blurry, etc), but I’m going to post a few anyway, even though the quality is poor, just to give you some idea what my division looked like.

I won’t mention the name of the photographer (my training partner, Kostas Mar), because I don’t want to embarrass him for his lack of photography skills (heh, heh, heh, Kostas, buddy, you’re still the best training partner, my man).

Fortunately, Richie took some pics of me on Sunday, although the muscle definition was not quite as sharp on Sunday after drinking at least two gallons of fluids and having cheat meal #1: steak and potatoes (I know, steak doesn’t sound like a cheat meal, and wouldn’t have been if it wasn’t for the cheese sauce on top, heh, heh), and cheat meal #2: a jumbo slice of pizza, and a beer. Sunday, of course, I was right back on the diet.

Anyway, I entered the Novice division in the middleweight class. Middleweights is 176.25 lbs and under. By the morning of the contest, believe it or not, I was down to 173.5 lbs. Just to show you how dehydrated you get from all this, I woke up Sunday morning after the show weighing 180.5 lbs. Yeah I gained back 7 lbs of fluids literally overnight. I’m 179 today.

As for the novice division, a couple of people emailed me and wondered how I could compete as a novice since I’ve won so many competitions before. The reason is, I have never won an overall NPC competition. I have won overall competitions in some of the other natural federations (not affiliated with the NPC), and I have won my weight class, but not the overall title in an NPC show, so according to NPC regulations, I still qualify for novice division until I have won an OVERALL NPC title.

This means I can enter the novice division again in two weeks at the Gold’s Classic. This is good news, because a natural bodybuilder has a much better chance in the novice division of a non-tested show than in the open division.

Here’s the top three in the novice middleweight lineup; There are two other guys on stage that got cut off in this photo. I apologize for the blurry photo, but I’m posting this one anyway because it shows the top three: 1st place to 3rd place from left to right (I’m second place in the middle):

Here’s a back double bicep shot of the entire class

And here’s a side chest shot of part of the class:

The short guy in the purple trunks (on the left) was the winner, and it’s pretty plain to see. He was jacked up like a little Franco Columbo! I think the judges made the right decision. I knew going into this show that I had not reached 100%. If I were at my absolute best on Saturday with better conditioning, I may have had a shot at first place by virtue of being more shredded, but on this Saturday, Oct 15th, I was clearly out-muscled.

Again, I apologize for the poor photo quality of these contest pics. I will do my best to get professional contest photos next time.

Here are some of the shots from the gym on Sunday the 16th:

That’s all for today. It’s back to work now! I’m off to the gym to go train back and calves and do some cardio. Two more weeks of this and that will wrap up the contest season and begin the mass-building season. After October 29th, the next show will be summer 2006. I will keep updating the blog through the next show and post the contest results once again.

Until next time, train hard and train natural!

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Comments on Tom Venuto October 15th Bodybuilding Competition Details And Photos Leave a Comment

October 17, 2005

Kev @ 3:17 pm #

Really pleased for you Tom 🙂
good to see you on the stage (as you said some better shots),the gym pics look cool, looking forward to you aiming to nail the next show!
did the extra carbs help at the end then? any change to how your going to prepare that last week for the next show?
are any of the other guys at that show competing in the next one?
as for the olympia, yea its nice to see the sheer size of some of those guys but the determination, dedication, committment & love for the sport that is displayed by the guys competing in the naturals seems far worthier, especially knowing that you have done it off your own back!
keep up the good work Tom, best of luck for the next competition & some better photos, I mean how can we see more striations 😉

Tom venuto @ 3:20 pm #

I’ll be making quite a few adjustments in these next two weeks to improve for the next show. I’ll post more about it in the blog in the coming days. Even bigger improvements will have to be made to be competitive for Team Universe next year.
Yes, there is a good chance that many if not all of the same local competitors will be in the Gold’s Clasic competition on October 29th because these two shows are so close together date-wise and geographically. There’s a good chance that this next contest will have far more competitors too.

G.B.D @ 3:42 pm #

EEk, Awesome Tom Venuto
This is the way a bodybuilder should look like, really AWESOME work.
Btw your’e a very handsome guy don’t you have any plans to become a model?
Tom don’t you have any latspread (front, back) pictures or bicep pose (front back) pictures, from the gym,contest?
please post them, i really admire you.
greetings G.B.D

Steven Wilkins @ 4:09 pm #

I got one word for you: R-I-P-P-E-D. Looking fantastic! You should dominate in the comming weeks!

GRACETOUCH @ 5:36 pm #


Lonnie @ 7:41 pm #

What exactly is the Team Universe?? I know Jeff Willett and Skip go to that event.
You have some big legs man… Keep squatting and dead lifting!

Tom Venuto @ 8:01 pm #

The Team Universe is (arguably) the most prestigious and most competitive amateur natural bodybuilding competition in the world.
You could say it’s the “national championships for natural bodybuilding” and it’s been a long time goal for me just to be on that stage. To place even in the top 5 in my weight class would be an honor.
Team Universe is a National Physique Committee (NPC) sanctioned event and it IS drug tested, although it’s only a 1 year drug free requirement if I’m not mistaken
I will have my work cut out for me. I will be training ALL YEAR (the next 9 months straight) with that one contest in mind.

October 18, 2005

Jessica Britt @ 12:51 am #

It’s good to get back in the game, isn’t it? That’s what I’m talkin’ about! Hard work pays off! Once again, congrats and good luck for your next one. You did awesome! Keep up the amazing work and never, ever stop bein’ you. 🙂

Marc David @ 1:03 am #

A big congratulations! I feel that after following just the training portions of your blog that somehow, I’m sad that these entries will stop, but I’m also scared at what’s ahead!
Team Universe is like Jeff and Skip!
That is a high mark and if there is a guy to do it, I’m putting my bets on you!
This has been great and the anticipation factor has been high. I can’t wait to see where you’ll go next.
Kudos on the win. After following all these entries, you deserved it.

G.B.D @ 5:04 am #

T.Venuto your back is totally awesome.
Got any front bicep and front lat spread pictures from the Gym or contest?

Pete Bessman @ 7:23 am #

Tom, fabulous work there. Very inspirational stuff. That peak on your biceps in the rear double shot is amazing — in fact, I think you beat the first place guy in that pose. Keep up the superb work, and best of luck to you on your next competition.

Bella @ 7:23 am #

Either your socks are really white or have a seriously deep tan…you look FANTASTIC! You should celebrate with more than only 1 piece of pizza – you are a true winner Tom – bring on The Team Universe!!

Lonnie @ 9:25 am #

Team Universe champs Jeff Willett and Skip Lacour are HUUUUGEEEE. I actually modelled my training after good gains and then changed my training for some reason, now I’m not making any gains. I’m going to switch back to a 5-day-split to get cut up like Tom, Skip, and Jeff!

Tom Venuto @ 9:33 am #

Jeff and Skip ARE huge! I’m not sure if either of those guys are still competing in Team U. They may be retired. Skip has been doing the Team U since the contest’s inception and is already a multiple-time heavyweight champ and an overall champ. He may have moved on to other things. Jeff has also won the overall Team Universe in the light heavies, heavies and the overall, and he has now started a gym in Michigan, so I’m not sure if he is coming back either.
Regardless of whether the same guys come back in 2006 or there are new faces, you can always count on the caliber of competition to be incredibly high at the Team Universe. It’s always the best natural bodybuilders in the country and everyone is in shape.
I am a middleweight, so I am comparing my physique more to the guys under 176 lbs like Tito Raymond and Ricky (Tricky) Jackson (or to guys like Dave Goodin and Jon Harris of the WNBF federation). To place top 3 in the middleweight division with a much improved physique, of the caliber of these guys is my goal for next year.

Lauren Muney @ 12:49 pm #

You look so “high-quality!” The natural look is the best. Not too other-worldly freaky… and that’s fine with me 🙂
Best of wishes to you!

October 19, 2005

Moelwyn @ 4:50 am #

Hi Tom, Sorry for not posting anything yet, I’ve yet to look at this site properly but I will catch up! I’m half way through your book. I’ve finally found the missing links to my customised program. You are an inspiration, I turly admire your honest, real and natural approach to fitness and life. You are my role model and I wanted to tell you how AWSOME you look in the pics! You’ve paid the price with dignity and character now reap the rewards! You are a true success. Enjoy the rest of the competition.
P.S. Thanks for introducing me to Brian Tracy! Yours, (visualising daily – “I want to look like Tom!”) Moelwyn Hopkins, Wales, UK

VA Jazzy gal @ 7:46 am #

A few days late – – a heartfelt well done! Tom, what we see is a winner. Your honesty & integrity in training and competing will always define you as a winner. Thank you for taking the time and sharing. Wishing you all the best, in the gym and out. Cheers from VA!

October 21, 2005

Jon Benson @ 4:13 pm #

You know what I think, partna! Rock.
Something I wanted to point out to those of you who either don’t know Tom or have not had the experience of comparing Tom’s blog and writings to other bodybuilders—the man has an utter proclivity toward honesty, both about his products and about his own physique. As a fitness pro, I can’t begin to tell you how rare this is, and how refreshing. Most BBers cannot admit they even need improvement, let alone spell out the strengths of the winner.
Tom, you’re the winner in my book, and you know why—you did it without any amendments to the laws of chemistry.

Doris @ 7:21 pm #

You look awesome!!! In my book you would’ve won. You work so hard. You really are not only physically outstanding, but what you stand for also is extraordinary.
Haven’t had as much time as I’d like to totally follow your whole blog, but you’ve really inspired me over the past 2 yrs to become much better every day of my life. I’m so grateful and thankful that you are such a well-rounded individual, educated, an achiever, disciplined, motivational, inspirational.
From reading your many articles, books, etc., I’ve really learned so much from you. When I get to where I expect to be, I really have you to thank for putting the positive thoughts in my head. Thank you for role-modeling excellence!!!
God bless you abundantly,

October 22, 2005

Jeri @ 5:22 pm #

I can’t express how special it is for you to share these experiences of preparing and fine tuning for competition, Tom. I’m humbled by your dedication and determination. I’ve learned so much from you already, but now while I’m slogging away at my training and ready to chuck it all in I am going to try to remember your pursuit of your own version of perfection and quit the negative thought train.
Thank you for sharing the experience. I think all too often people don’t appreciate the time and effort that goes into preparing for competition. Although you certainly have never led anyone astray on that score it is priceless to have a day-by-day account.
I sincerely hope you achieve your improvement goals for the Gold’s Classic. If anyone can do it certainly must be you! Looking forward to hearing of your success and routing for you all the way.

January 23, 2006

Geoff @ 9:59 am #

The rips you’ve got, incredible stuff man. Not only are you an expert, but you also walk the walk. Impressive.

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