Keith Williams competes this weekend in the 2009 IFBB North American Championships
By Shawn Perine
August 27, 2009
Big Keith Williams has to be considered one of the favorites to win a pro card going into this weekend's IFBB North American Championships in Cleveland, Ohio - especially after his impressive runner-up finish in the super-heavyweight class at the ’09 USA's, this past July.
"I feel great,” says Williams, a former U.S. Olympic Track Team alternate and NFL draftee . “I feel better than I did at the USA Championships. Everyone said I came in my all-time best condition in Vegas, and of course I wasn’t satisfied with the results. So I decided to come in even tighter and more conditioned than I was there. I’ve been training harder than ever and my diet is right on target, so I’ll probably come in a few pounds heavier but drier than I was at the USA's."
More from Williams, one day out from the 2009 IFBB North American Championships prejudging:
"Flex [Wheeler] saw me on Wednesday night and he said I was actually better than I was at the USA's. He said my waistline looked tighter and my legs were fuller. He said that it would be hard for anyone to compete against me because I’m so big and so conditioned."
"In the weeks between the USA's and now people have been talking about how I'm a favorite going into the show. Somebody actually just said to me that I look like I should be competing on a pro stage. I try not to let it get to me though. I'm just looking forward to getting up onstage and showing the judges the improvements I've made since the USA's. If Flex and my big brother Stan [Efferding] say I look better, then I know I do look better. If I keep my focus on showing my improvements, I can't get distracted by talk of being a front runner."
"We cut out cardio early this time around because we didn't want to lose too much size. Instead I had a routine where every day I would get up at 4 am and do walking lunges with no weight, inner and outer thighs, some kind of an extension movement and abs and then do some stretching and calves. Beyond that I've just been pounding away at my posing - pounding, pounding away at the posing. We also kept the carbs up and used the mirror to keep me in check. I know that once I cut the sodium and water things start changing very quickly for me."
ME VS. ME
"Right now (Thursday evening) I'm 254 pounds. Tomorrow night, after I cut the water and sodium I imagine I'll be hitting the stage at about 250. I know I'm going to have much more size than any heavyweight I might face in an overall posedown. So I have to make sure I get to that posedown. That means I have to get past Todd Jewel and Sean Allen, but really I'm focused on competing against myself."
"I don’t sprint very much anymore because I'm around 290 pounds in the offseason. Last year when I was running a bit I started to lose size in my legs, so it's not that compatible with bodybuilding. Sometimes I think how I have a couple more years of football left in me. In fact last year my agent called me and said 'A couple of teams have been asking about you. You sure you don't want to give it one more shot?' and I was like, 'Nah, I'm good.' I played some semi-pro ball with some of my buddies in Minnesota and I was 260 and playing running back. I still had the wheels and could make the cuts but boy oh boy, when you're shifting 260 pounds as opposed to 225, it's a night and day difference."
Be sure to stay tuned to flexonline this weekend as Big Keith makes his bid for the 2009 IFBB North American overall title and a pro card to go with it.