Posted 11 May 2014 by Interview:

Eric Leto

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How and when did you start training?

It all started when I played basketball back in the day. The team trainer pushed all the players to do some weight lifting to enhance performance. As soon as I got to work out, I enjoyed it all: the pump, the feeling when you are sore and of course the results which come very fast at the beginning. As I had more pleasure lifting weights than playing basketball, I dedicated all my leisure time to that amazing lifestyle. I started to take it really seriously competing at a national level as a junior bodybuilder. I never stopped working out since that day. It’s been 8 years since then. I have achieved a lot on my journey here. I can definitely say that, for me, it was the right path to follow. I am glad I did it. There is no regret at all: from the moment I adopted a bodybuilder’s lifestyle until today. I have improved in every single way and my vision of life has never been as expansive and complete as it is today.

What mistakes did you make as a newbie?

As a newbie I wasn’t aware that nutrition was a big factor in the body transformation, so I just cared about training regularly at the gym and nothing else. Just when I started to stagnate after a few months working out, I questioned myself about the whole bodybuilding concept. After gaining interest on the healthy Lifestyle, I got it on track and never left it until today, 8 years later. Just remember, healthy nutrition is the key for an outstanding physique.

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We know consistency is key, what tips would you give to
anyone struggling to stay consistent?

You have to set yourself short and long term goals to stay consistent continuously. Just by way of example: when you enter a path without knowing where it will lead and take you, you will be questioning yourself too much after a while and 90% of this sensible situation, you will fall in to the gap of failure. You need to know exactly where you are going, be it a competition, or a photo shoot, or even just a personal body achievement (by achieving more muscle mass, getting leaner to a certain body fat). You need to know what kind of objectives you want and plan to achieve them.

Do you listen to music whilst training?

I do listen to music when I train, especially when I train alone (often I train with a partner). I like to put on some chill out music when I work out, as it eases my mind and gets my concentration better during the whole work out. The best channel I can recommend is majestic casual, they have every kind of inspiring chill out mixes; funky, lounge, electro, pop, dubstep. Otherwise, I generally listen to rock music, old school rock is my favorite one, naming some bands;  AC/DC, Iron Maiden, Kiss, Gun’s n’ Roses and Black Sabbath.

What do you think about when you have to dig deep
and push out that last rep?

I always think about the moment I step up on stage, or the moment I will be in front of the camera, I imagine my ideal physique in that special moment, that will be achieved if I work my butt off and push out that last rep ‘til I can’t no more. What really helps as well is thinking about your haters, who think and especially hope you will not be successful.

How far ahead do you plan and prepare ahead your
nutrition and training if at all?

It usually depends what I’m preparing, if I am preparing for a competition, I’m planning 8 weeks in advance, I set up all the nutrition plans for the whole period, changing every week, decreasing calories or doing carb cycling. Often when I get booked for photo-shoots that occur a few days later, I have to adapt an adequate nutrition to get the leanest I can for it, so the best for me is to stay the leanest possible all year round. Don’t want to lose any opportunity that might be offered to me.

What are you most proud of?

I am very proud of all that I have achieved until now, the people that I could inspire and motivate during all these years. Through my hard work and dedication, I showed people that you can achieve anything in life just by being perseverant and following your passion. Hard work in an intelligent way always pays off.

Do you bulk and cut or stay lean year round?

I stay lean all year round, as a fitness model you have to keep up your shape to get continuously work. You get opportunities all the time for jobs, shows, competitions and appearances, so bulking is not appropriate for a fitness model. Sometimes it is hard to manage healthy eating during all the year, but you have to know what you really want in life. Indeed, I allow myself one cheat meal per week, where I dine out with my girlfriend and friends.

What types of cardio do you do?

I split my cardio into HIIT (high intensity interval training) and LISS (low intensity steady state) sessions; 2 HIIT sessions and 4 LISS sessions in total per week.

  • HIIT Session: (bicycle or treadmill) 20 mins.
  • 5 mins warm-up.
  • 6 sprints of 45 seconds (12-14 mph) in total with 1min30 of walking (4.5 mph) in-between.
  • 5 mins of cool down.

I usually do HIIT sessions only on ‘rest days ‘ or ‘cardio days’, as it burns a lot of glycogen stored in your muscles.

LISS Session: (Stairmaster, bicycle, treadmill, cross trainer)

In general, I don’t do more than 30 minutes of LISS cardio after a Workout; the intensity of the cardio is moderate, where I try to maintain a heart rate of 125-140 bpm.

In my opinion the most effective cardio is the one made after a heavy weightlifting, the ratio of fat burned in the latter session is very high.

What is your training routine like?

Workout routine

What is your diet when trying to get in peak condition?

During peak week, I cut down dairy products, fruits, any kind of fats and wheat aliments. I eat 4 times a day white fish with green leafy vegetables, day by day I decrease my carb intake until the last day before the show/competition/photo-shoot, and then I do a carb up until ShowTime. During that whole week, I drink 2 gallons of water and avoid any carbonated drinks.

1st day of the week I start with 150 grams of carbs and decrease it by 20 % each upcoming day. One day before, I eat every 2 hours 50 grams of carbs until the event to look fuller and harder. (white fish and vegetables remain in the carb load period).

Who are your favourite athletes, bodybuilders or fitness models?

My all-time favorite bodybuilder and idol is Arnold Schwarzenegger, and my favorite fitness model is Greg Plitt.

What supplements do you use if any?

I mainly take Isolate Protein, BCAA’s, Arginine and Multivitamins as supplements.

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What top 3 tips would you give to anyone wanting to get CutAndJacked?

  1. Train insanely hard and eat healthy.
  2. Stick to the 90/10 Diet, where 90% of your nutrition is clean and 10% pleasure, to follow and achieve a successful long-term physical goal.
  3. Find an inspirational physique and plan an adequate workout routine and nutrition to achieve it, step by step, never lose focus on your goal, NEVER!

Eric Leto


Born: 1986 (28 years) , Weight : 175 lbs , Height : 5’9’’

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