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Dr. Horner Takes on Body Building – 100% Naturally

Posted on August 1, 2022

Over the next three months, Dr. Mike Horner is training for a body building competition, with nothing but consistent hard work, healthy nutrition, and an expert team at the Panorama Institute 

“What’s something you’ve never done that you’ve always wanted to do?”  For Dr. Michael Horner, that question launched a five-month journey of disciplined training and nutrition for a natural body building competition.  He’s currently in month three of training, with 11 weeks to go until competition day.  With the help of his wife, his coach, and the Panorama Institute Team, Dr. Horner is determined to push his body to the limits the right way. 

Originally, Dr. Horner’s wife came up with the idea of competing in a fitness competition.  She’d always wanted to try a competition, but wasn’t sure if she would be able to because of a previous back surgery, not to mention the high level of commitment with two little kids to keep up with.  The solution: the Horner’s decided to take on the challenge together and keep each other accountable in the training and nutrition planning. 

Unlike most competitors, for Dr. Horner, it’s primarily about the health journey and training instead of the competition day.  “I’m not a stage guy,” says Dr. Horner.  “For me, it’s the challenge and a different experience. I wrestled D1 in college at Penn State, and for the past 20 years, I’ve been missing that challenge.”  

But according to his coach, Steve Hess and Chief Performance Officer at Panorama, Dr. Horner has been bringing 100% effort since he started training with him three years ago.  “One day when we were training, I saw that he was dragging a little.  When I asked him what was up, I saw he was wearing a 40-pound vest underneath his shirt,” Steve remembers.  “When I train Dr. Horner, I’ve got to put reigns on him.  That’s what makes greatness.” 

Dr. Horner started training 21 weeks out from the competition date, October 13th, and after religiously following Steve’s nutrition plan and workouts, he’s already made impressive progress.  He’s dropped from 8% body fat to 6% body fat and has gained 5lbs. of muscle, all 100% naturally. 

A common misconception about body building, is that in order to be competitive, everyone who participates takes performance-enhancing drugs.  Dr. Horner specifically chose to participate in the OCB competition because it’s all natural.  “Not only do they drug test you, which may only reveal drugs used in the past few weeks or months, they actually have you take a polygraph graph test to ensure that no one has taken banned substances for at least the past 7 years, if ever,” Dr. Horner explains.  This lifestyle choice only increases the importance of proper training and nutrition. 

“The workouts are the easy part, the diet and the time is the hard part,” says Dr. Horner.  Take clean eating, and then go one step further.  Dr. Horner and his wife have cut out all processed foods, and stick to a diet of lean meats, rice, veggies, and fruit.  “I’ve never truly dieted before, and now I’m counting calories, macros, and weighing out salmon and cups of rice. Later on, it’s even more intense because you’re measuring water and sodium intake,” he describes. 

To gain muscle, Dr. Horner is aiming to eat six meals a day, which requires extensive time for meal prep. Instead of trying to cook that much food every day, Dr. Horner and his wife often make five days’ worth of food in advance.  “There’s no way I could do this without her,” he emphasized. 

At the end of the day, the key is consistent, hard work over an appropriate period of time, and the right coach guiding you through it.  

Over the course of the next 3 months, Dr. Horner and the Panorama Institute team will be documenting his training, nutrition, and best practices when it comes to training and living a healthy lifestyle.  Join us by following Panorama’s Instagram and Facebook pages to join the journey.