Third-year human-kinetics student Samuel Dixon, a six-year veteran of body-building, is the perfect example of an accomplished athlete with the drive and determination needed to practise a sport that requires tremendous personal discipline and focus.
Indeed, while juggling full-time studies, a steady girlfriend, competitions, a strict diet, a job at Hyperforme Nutrition and a demanding training regimen, Samuel managed to earn the title of IDFA Pro only two years after setting his sights on that objective.
International Drug Free Athletics (IDFA) is among only a handful of body-building federations that promote the sport as an entirely healthy and natural discipline. Though he could easily succumb to the pressures of competing and take the easy road by consuming certain substances, Samuel is determined to produce his results through nothing other than personal effort.
“It’s important for me to keep my values in mind and the reasons I’m doing what I’m doing: because it’s a sport I like and it’s a lifestyle I like—it’s not necessarily about winning, but about being the best that I can with the capacities I have,” explains Samuel, who wants to open his own fitness studio in a few years. “If you cheat, you betray yourself. In my own mind, I wouldn’t have any credibility if I did that.”
A typical day for Samuel looks something like this:
5 a.m.: out of bed for an hour of cardio training
Breakfast: 2/3 cup of oatmeal, eight egg whites and one whole egg
Morning: courses at uOttawa
Daytime diet: four meals made up essentially of asparagus, tilapia, grilled chicken and broccoli
Evening: 90 minutes of weight training
Supper: five rice cakes and a protein drink
9 p.m.: bed time
Not surprisingly, Samuel long ago eliminated alcohol and late-night outings from his routine. “I’m not interested in heading out to the clubs. I prefer spending time with the people I like, going to bed early and heading to the gym the next morning,” says the athlete, who has even been sponsored by Blue Star Neutraceuticals. “Even during the tougher moments, I’ve never considered quitting, because you learn to discipline yourself as the years go by.”
Still, few people would be able to follow the path Samuel did to get to where he is and to perform at the level he does today. “I started training six years ago and I was hooked right away. The sport is actually an amazing science, so on top of working out every day, I had to start reading everything I could on nutrition and fitness,” he adds. “It’s a huge personal challenge that calls for rock-solid discipline 24 hours a day.”
Samuel would be happy to answer your questions or your requests for personal training through his email.
If you know a student who has done something interesting and who would be willing to share his or her story with the University community, please contact Nadia Gervais, E-Communications Officer.