You have no items in your shopping cart.
A Story to Tell by Charles Anderson
|It was spring, 2001 in Federal Way, Wa. Where I began my quest to get in shape and gain some muscle onto my 5'7', 150 pound frame. I had no intention of becoming a bodybuilder; I just wanted to look like a professional wrestler, namely Triple H! I had no intention on standing on stage, in my underwear, in front of hundreds of people and flexing my muscles, that was not my goal. While training at Bally Total Fitness in Federal Way, WA, all that changed. While working out one morning, I spotted two guys posing and flexing in the mirror on the lower level of the gym and I remember saying to myself....."Look at these fools, what the h** are they doing", little did I know, I would be doing the same thing the following year.|
|A few months went by and I was still walking around the gym with that "Deer in the Headlights" look until I ran into the biggest female I had ever seen in my life and I got up the nerve to talk to her. I asked her..."Are your Ms. Olympia?", I remember seeing her in Flex Magazine, and she answered me in her thick Ukrainian accent, "Yes I am", it was Valentina Chepiga, working out in the same gym in Federal Way that I was!!! I was so happy and wanted to impress her by showing her I was able to lift heavy weights, at the same time, I had no clue as to what I was doing!|
|One afternoon, that same guy that was posing in the mirror walked into the gym, a full 20 pounds heavier than he was 2 months prior and I asked him, "How did you do that, how did you gain that much muscle???", He replied, "follow me, I will help you", he became my best friend, Elias Clark.|
|Fast forward, in 2002, I moved to Anchorage, Alaska and began my quest to become a bodybuilder like my best friend Eli and I ran into Froilan Brandt and Rodney McDonald of Max Muscle Anchorage and they began to help me prepare for the 2002 Anchorage Bodybuilding Championships where I won my class at my first contest. In 2003, I wanted more and did that same contest again and won my class again!|
|I was on cloud nine at the point until 2005 and I ran into the big league, THE EMERALD CUP in Washington State. I placed 7th in the open middleweight class and in 2006, I place 6th in that same class, that's when my life changed forever. May 2006, after having numerous nose bleeds, and chest palpitations, I decided to go see a doctor for a checkup. The doctor sent me to a specialist for numerous test and evaluations where the cardiologist told me, you have heart disease and things are not looking good for you. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a condition in which the heart muscle becomes thick. The thickening makes it harder for blood to leave the heart, forcing the heart to work harder to pump blood. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is often asymmetrical; meaning one part of the heart is thicker than the other parts, which my left side is thicker than the right side.|
|I was told I had 3 month to live unless I changed my current lifestyle and my way of working out so I did. It was 5 long years before I made a full recovery and after talking to all my doctors, I was cleared to compete again with no restrictions. That’s when I began my 8 month quest for the 2011 Alaska State Championships in Anchorage, AK. I sought the help of then, a longtime friend who had been helping me the entire 8 months, when, 2 weeks out from the show, I was at my all-time best, ripped to the bone and headed to an overall win, when the unbelievable happened. The week of the show, my body started rejecting everything we were doing to it, nothing was working to get that 2 weeks out look back, so I took drastic measure to win. At the poor advice of this person, I went 3 days with 32oz of water with pushed me into severe dehydration and my body shut down.|
|The Friday before the show was the worst I had ever felt in my life, this is when the heart attack began to make it way through my body. Saturday, the day of the show, I couldn't eat, I had lost all of my definition and cuts, I was so dry and thirsty I couldn't see anything, everything was hazy and foggy but I keep going. After being announced 4th place, I went to the hospital and was told I was having a heart attack. My liver had shut down, my kidneys were not functioning, and my heart was getting ready to stop beating. My eyes had turned red and yellow and I was hospitalized for 4 day, trying to get everything back in order and it took 5 days to be rehydrated.|
|My cardiologist came to my bed side and looked me in my eyes and said, "Bodybuilding is over for you, you almost died Charles!, now you have congestive heart failure (CHF)!!!".Congestive heart failure (CHF) is generally defined as the inability of the heart to supply sufficient blood flow to meet the needs of the body.|
|I had no clue that what i was being put through by my "then" trainer was killing me slowly but surely, so I sat in that hospital bed knowing I would never compete again. I asked my doctor, "what can I do that will not cause any more damage to my heart?” he said, "your already lean, just stay this way...do modeling or something"........this is when I thought, hmmmm, Men's Physique!!!!! I asked my doctor and he said "GO FOR IT"!!!! Now, I'm 100% healthy, won my first Men's Physique contest 3 weeks after leaving the hospital and I’m on my way with my best friend and trainer Shawn Wolfe to the 2012 NPC Emerald Cup!!! This man, Shawn Wolfe has been my backbone, my strength and he guides me to be the best MAN, not just athlete I can be, W4L!!!!!!|
|I will always have congestive heart failure but I learned a valuable lesson. Listen to your body, listen to yourself, you know you better than anyone else. Your health and well-being is more important, don't listen to bad advice, surround yourself with winners like my W4L family, and you too will become a winner.|
|Thanks for reading......
Charles Anderson, NPC Men's Physique Competitor
You must be logged in to post a comment.
click here to log in