Training Tips from Teen Champs

10 NPC Teen Nationals competitors who went pro share their best advice for young bodybuilders.

Per Bernal / Courtesy of Weider Health & Fitness


“Stay consistent. Train smart. Warm up, stretch and use proper form, because nothing will stop your gains faster than an injury. Overall, you need to train for the right reasons. Do it because you love it. If you’re doing it because you think you’re going to get rich and famous, you’ll never get anywhere. You have to have a passion for bodybuilding.”

At 18, Branch Warren won the light-heavyweight and overall 1993 Teen Nationals, in the process defeating 19-year-old heavyweight Jay Cutler. Warren, who has won nine pro shows, was second to Cutler in the 2009 Mr. Olympia.

Chris Lund

Just after his teenage win, Huh poses for Richard Jones.


“I feel as though a lot of young guys just don’t eat enough. When you’re a teenager, your metabolism is ramped up. You can pack away a lot of calories without gaining a pound. That’s one of the advantages of youth, but it can be a disadvantage to a young bodybuilder who wants to grow. I ate eight meals a day, including [protein] shakes, every day. I consumed around 4,000 calories a day in the off-season when I weighed 250, and I kept my carbs in the 400 [grams] to 450 range. You need all those extra nutrients to grow.”

In 2004, Jason Huh beat Gerald Williams in the light-heavy class and heavyweight Steve Kuclo for the overall Teen Nationals title. Since winning the 2010 USA Championships, Huh has competed in four pro shows.


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