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Brandan Schieppati is the founder of Rise Above Fitness and his body transformations and conditioning circuits are quickly becoming legendary. Brandan comes from the unique background of being a successful touring and recording musician with a full-time passion for fitness. He got seriously into fitness in 1998, while on tour with his band Bleeding Through in 2002, becoming notorious for his parking lot work outs while on the road. He sat down to chat with us.
How did you get started in bodybuilding/ﬁtness?
I got into Fitness in 1996 basically when I stopped playing football and Baseball in High School. I use to lift with the team for sports but never went to a public gym until 1996. At ﬁrst I hated it cause I am really competitive with myself and I hate not being good at something. Then I found my groove and had a few good training partners and began to love it. I love everything about the gym. The smell. The weights clinging together and even the shit heads that sometimes venture in. Back then it was the wild wild west. We didnt really know what we were doing and looking back I am glad that I didnt hurt myself.
What is your favorite body part to train?
I love to train my legs. It is something that neglected when I was younger cause I hated training legs in High School sports. Plus I never knew the beneﬁts of training legs until I really started to look at the education of weight lifting. Now I train legs probably 60% of the time. I’d rather have a good strong base then look like a fucking Johnny Bravo lookalike. Or as I call them “cupcakes”
Do you do any other types of training besides weight training?
I occasionally train Muay Thai. I have done Crossﬁt before when it was in its grassroots stages about 6 years ago. I don’t really limit my self to anything and would try about anything that looks intense.
How hard is it for you to get your workouts in and eat right when on tour with your band?
Honestly it isn’t as hard as you may think. I am a creature of habit and can eat the same thing everyday. So if we have a stove and fridge I can maintain eating relatively clean. Tour is all about routine to me. Wake up, eat breakie and drink my coffee and ﬁnd a gym. If I can’t ﬁnd a gym I bring enough equipment to get down in the parking lot to the club or in the venue itself. I ﬁnd that my routine is tighter sometimes on tour and helps the time pass by. The down time of touring can crush a man so I stay motivated. Plus I get to see some cool gyms sometimes.
Can you give us a sample of your routine?
Well my bases is Metabolic Circuit training but I infuse more power/German volume training to my routine. I like the basics. I ﬁnd they just work for me and sometimes when things get cute in the weight room your gains take a shit. So a sample of what I am on now is today for example I did 10 sets of squats reps of 4. On the odd number sets I use 4 second essentric tempo on the down and then the even sets I try to keep it as explosive as possible. I group or “super set” the squats with leg curls. 10 sets of 4 as well and also use tempo on the odds and explosive on the evens. Its a tempo contrast that will pack on power and size but since its metabolically grouped together you get a good heart rate going and stay lean. Then the i’ll mix in some more movements such as box step ups, walking lunges, RDLs stu! like that. Then I always end my workouts with sprint work or HIIT work.
What kind of music do you listen to when you are working out?
I listen to everything. Owning my own gym I have to please the masses. If it is just me then Ill play heavy music such as Pantera or Cannibal Corpse but If people are around I will put on heavy electronic or something Punk.
We all have at least one, what is the most embarrassing song on your iPod?
Oh you mean Justin Bieber!!!!
What does your diet look like when you are trying to get lean?
If i’m trying to get lean Ill constrict my carbs to about 20g Active carbs a day with about 200+ grams of protein and about 40 grams of fat a day. Then twice a week like Wednesday and Sunday Ill have a carb load meal. I just works to my anal lifestyle.
List the top 10 foods we would ﬁnd in your kitchen.
- Lean ground
- Julian bakery bread
- La Tortilla Low carb tortillas
- Almond milk
What kind of cardio do you like best and why?
Sprints because your body never gets used to the shock of sprints.
If you could give somebody only one bodybuilding tip what would it be?
Just have patience. Rome wasn’t built in a day
Tell us about your biggest bodybuilding/ﬁtness inﬂuence?
Henry Rollins,Arnold of Course. Stallone (modern Stallone), The Rock.
Favorite cheat food?
Donuts by far.
Do you take any supplements?
I use Muscle Pharm products. Assult, Combat, Amino 1, Armour V, L-carnatine.
What does the future hold for you?
I hope to start franchising Rise Above Fitness. Im proud of what my gym has become in 2 years and I want to be world wide. I also Plan to grow the Apparel side of Rise Above Expand that with the gym. I just want to inspire people to get o! there asses. Especially the people that might think the gym has no place for them. I welcome all.