Posted 13 December 2011 by Interview:

Matus Valent

How and when did you start training?

I have been sporty since childhood. I played soccer and then later I switched to volleyball, which I played at a high level for 9 years. I started to work out thanks to my dad (a former bodybuilder) when I was around 14 years old in his basement where he had his own, private hardcore gym. My first years of training was focused on getting in better shape, and gaining strength to perform better in my sport. When I was 24 years old (born 1981) I started to treat my workouts the way I do now, as a fitness model, competitor and athlete. I don’t do much other sport these days, I just focus on improving my physique. I also have a Master’s degree in physical education and sport.

What mistakes did you make as a newbie?

I don’t think or feel I made any mistakes as a beginner. I had lots of great tips and guidance from my dad, which helped a lot. Of course I wasn’t training the same way I train now. With all sports it is a process of learning and knowing your body better with time. I know I have much more experience and knowledge now, but I don’t feel anything I did as a newbie was a mistake, plus I have been reading M&F and Flex magazines since a teenager so got I got allot of great tips from those publications.

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

This is very true. Consistency and dedication are probably the most important elements in achieving the dream body you want. If you do everything 120%, but don’t last more than 1 or 2 months, it really has no long-term effect. The whole idea of fitness and working out is to make it your lifestyle, something you feel and want to do almost on a daily basis, to see the results, to be motivated and to try to improve. I am sure everyone who trains hard can see after a period of time some results. Those physique improvements motivate me to train and diet even harder, to get better, to see the ‘payday’ of my hard work and hours spent in the gym. All of it is in your head, if you want to see progress and feel good about yourself you need need to stay consistent.

Do you listen to music whilst training?

Here is my Top 15 songs:
Europe – The Final Countdown
Ladytron – Destroy everything you touch
Ladytron – Ace of Hz (Tiesto remix)
Journey – Separate Ways
Scorpions – Still Loving You
Depeche Mode – Try walking in my shoes
Prodigy – No Good
Eminem & Lil Wayne – Drop the World
Shiny Toy Guns – You are The One and Don’t Cry Out
Silversun Pickups – Panic Switch
30 Seconds to Mars – Hurricane
Rammstein – Du Hast
Milk Inc – Never again
Edward Maya – Stereo Love
Linkin Park – Lying from You

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

Thinking about how my competition are training. I know everyone at the top gives everything into their training, that’s why I want to push beyond 100%. My success and results come from hardwork at the gym so I want to make sure I stay on the right track and train as hard as possible.

Free weights vs machines what do you feel are the pros and cons of both and which do you prefer?

I prefer machines and I always have. Maybe I am just used to them, but for me they work better. Maybe I am just not a hardcore bodybuilder. For example I train chest for 31-35 sets in one training, I do about 6 exercises, but never touch dumbbells. And I think pecs/chest is my most developed and signature body-part. I know free weights have their pros and are involving more muscles and stabilizers for a better result, I just feel everyone has their own system and way to train, for me I am a bigger fan of machines. I do use free weights in several occasions, during my biceps, triceps, shoulder workouts, I am aware of its advantages.

What are you most proud of?

I am really proud of having a Master’s degree, school was always my #1 priority, the goal was to finish and earn a University degree. Also my journey to USA after school, how I came with one bag of clothes and couple hundred dollars, how I worked for $6-$7/hr with no off days, those are the moments I will never forget and will remind me that all I have achieved was thanks to myself without any outside help, through hard work and dedication. My volleyball results, my fitness modeling victories, magazine covers & commercials, those are also my moments I am very proud of.

Do you bulk and cut or stay lean year round?

As a fitness model I am almost the whole year in very lean shape, but I do have 3 periods a year when I add weigh gainers and creatine into my supplementation, when I focus on increasing size, and putting on few pounds of muscle. I do feel my training system is closer to a bodybuilder than a fitness model, who most of the time stay at 170lbs and are in a ‘plateau’ shape all year round. My goal is still to improve and it’s not possible with 52 weeks of strict diet.

What types of cardio do you do?

Since my workouts are about 2 – 2.5 hrs long every session I feel like I am burning quite a lot of calories when lifting weight, that’s why I don’t do any cardio. When very close to my super lean conditioning, contest or photo-shoot I do 2x a week about 20minutes of Elliptical, just so my head feels like I did the effort to burn few extra calories.

What is your training routine like?


Monday: Chest, Biceps 

Flat barbell bench press 8 sets
Hammer strength flat press 4 sets
Pec-deck 5 sets
Dips 4 sets
Cable crossovers 5 sets
Smith machine incline barbell press 5 sets

Seated dumbbell preacher curls 5 sets
Scott bench machine curls 5 sets
Standing EZ barbell curls 4sets
Seated dumbbell hammer curls 4 sets


Tuesday: Legs

Smith machine squats 7 sets
Leg extension 8 sets
Leg curls 5 sets
Leg press 4 sets
Standing machine calves raises 5 sets
Seated calves raises 5 sets


Wednesday: Back,Triceps

Pull-ups 4 sets
T-bar bent over rows 4 sets
Cable pull downs wide grip 5 sets
Seated cable rows 4 sets
Cable pull downs close grip 3 sets
Bent over lateral dumbbell raises 3 sets
Seated machine rows 4 sets
Hyperextensions 3 sets
Shrugs 3 sets

Narrow (close) grip bench press 5 sets
Triceps cable pull downs super-setting with dips 5 sets
One arm reverse cable pull downs 5 sets
Triceps (rope) cable pull downs 3 sets (light 20 reps)


Thursday:Chest & Biceps

Same routine as on Monday


Friday: Shoulders, Calves

Incline machine shoulder press 5 sets
Lateral shoulder press on machine 5 sets
Standing dumbbell front raises 5 sets
Bent over dumbbell lateral raises 3 sets
Standing EZ barbell front raises 5 sets
Standing dumbbell lateral raises super-setting with shrugs 5 sets

Leg extensions 5 sets
Standing calves raises 5 sets
Seated calves raises 5 sets

I train abs at the end of each workout, usually around 16 sets
Flat bench crunches with weight 3 sets
Flat bench leg raises 3 sets
Crunch machine 3 sets
Kneeling twist machine 4 sets (2 sets each side)
Roman chair leg raises 3 sets

I don’t work out Saturday & Sunday, those are my rest/recovery days

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

When I am getting closer to the peak day, for a photoshoot, contest or any other reason I start to manipulate with carbohydrates, taking 3-4 days with almost none, following 1-2 days of no sodium diet. Even my calories intake is pretty low, focusing on chicken breasts, red meat, egg whites, small amount of nuts. I also supplement with fat burners to increase my metabolism and few days before the goal date I add water pills, such as Dandelion root, Uva Ursi, Diurex which helps with my final touches.

Who are your favorite athletes, bodybuilders
or fitness models?

In general I admire driven athletes, whose focus is 150% on their sport and results. Among my favorite and active athletes I would pick Kobe Bryant, Michael Phelps, Usain Bolt. My Top bodybuilders would be Arnold, Frank Zane, Ronnie Coleman, Markus Ruhl and the very impressive Phil Heath after this years Mr.O victory. I don’t really have any favorite fitness models, I have few good friends in the industry, but no one I would put on a pedestal.

What supplements do you use if any?

I use a wide scale of supplements in my training regiment. Key for me is a high quality protein, aminos, creatines (monohydrate, kre-alkalyne), pre-workout drink, nitric oxide, testosterone booster, beta-alanine, glutamine, the whole scale of vitamins & minerals.

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

1. Choose and follow the right combination of hard training, strict diet and smart supplementation.

2. Stay consistent and dedicated, everything takes time.

3. Know your own body, but also learn from other bodybuilders and fitness models.

Weight 200 -220lbs, Height : 6’3”


Twitter: @thematusv

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