From pro basketball player in his youth to a short period in the army. Lazar Angelov has had his ups and downs, but one thing remained, and that’s his love for training and keeping fit.
With years of hard work, he’s made a lasting career in the world of fitness and modeling. With no signs of him stopping, we’re sure there’s still a lot more to come from Lazar, and this is his story:
|Full Name: Lazar Angelov|
|Weight||Height||Year of Birth||Nationality|
|205 - 215lbs (88.5 - 93.0kg)||5'9" (175cm)||1984||Bulgarian|
|Bodybuilder, Model, Personal Trainer||2010|
|Weight||205 - 215lbs (88.5 - 93.0kg)|
|Year of Birth||1984|
|Profession||Bodybuilder, Model, Personal Trainer|
Lazar has risen to the top of his game and battled through many tough situations. Attaining a body like Lazar’s and a world class reputation doesn’t come easy. He’s achieved world recognition for having one of the best bodies in the industry.
Not only that, Lazar’s created a successful business helping others achieving their goals of obtaining their dream body through his online personal training.
“When you really, really want something, nothing can stop you from achieving it.”
Lazar’s inspiration to get fit and strong came from watching a lot of action movies, he grew up wanting to emulate his big screen heroes. Later on, he got into basketball and weight training. He would complete two sessions of basketball training, one in the morning and the second in the afternoon, the weights session would be in the middle of the day. Lazar didn’t know anything about nutrition at the time, a couple of times he actually passed out. “I was too tired and I didn’t recover properly.”
Lazar then went to the Army for one year. After his service, he got out of shape and was struggling with which direction he wanted to go in life. This is where Angelov got inspired to get serious about strength training and bodybuilding. “Since fitness was my second passion behind basketball, I decided to put all my effort into it and that was the turning point for me.”
“I would say I’ve had some very tough periods in my life, but I have gone through them all and I am ready to overcome anything that life throws at me. To me life is like a bench press – if I don’t push the weight, it will fall on me. This is why I have to overcome each challenge life throws at me and to move forward.”
No Easy Ride
Going through his fair share of tough times when he first started out. He worked two jobs, one as a personal trainer in the daytime and a security guard at night. They didn’t pay well, but he kept on pushing and focusing on his goals to creating his physique of greatness.
He admits that it was hard work, and there were long periods of little or no rest, just work work work, but as we can see, his hard work paid off. “It was hard because I didn’t get enough rest, but it ‘was worth it. When you really, really want something, nothing can stop you from achieving it.”
“As an ectomorph, I was naturally pretty lean and I also did a lot of aerobic exercises during the day, so I couldn’t gain muscle mass back then.”
Achieving your dreams is no easy task, says Lazar, but maintaining what you’ve achieved, and the hours you’ve dedicated to making your dream into a reality, is just as hard. It’s not as easy as sitting back after the hard work is done, it takes just as much effort to maintain what you’ve created.
“Most people believe that once you have achieved the body that you always wanted, everything else comes easy after that. Well actually the hardest part is maintaining your physique over a long period of time. It costs me as much effort to stay in this shape as it cost me to achieve it. I have to give 100% all the time and if I start living like most people do I quickly get out of shape. A lot of people think that they give it their all, but they are actually far from that; they say they do everything at 100%, but things still don’t work out for them.”
Intensity for Ectomorphs
In terms of training itself, Lazar likes to train heavy and with a lot of intensity. This is regardless whether he’s cutting or bulking. He suggests that if you’re someone with an ectomorph body type, then you should be using heavy weights to maintain good muscle density.
There’s generally no set rule for Lazar’s training routine for days of the week, he’ll listen to his body (like most true professionals,) and if he needs to rest he’ll rest, and if he needs to train a certain muscle group, he’ll make sure he targets that area. This comes with years of knowing your own body and what works best for you.
Lazar will always incorporate basic exercises such as squat, bench press and deadlift in his training routine. But will always try to make them different each time to provoke new muscle responses.
“Only after they have seen how a single day of my life goes, they find out that the effort that they put in is about half of what is actually needed.”
Keep it Simple
Lazar says that he’s seen a lot of personal trainers constantly changing up their workout programs to stress the muscles in different ways, hoping to provoke new responses and growth. But as Lazar says;
“They use different techniques, which sometimes take them away from the basic principles, which are that the range between 5 and 8 repetitions is the best for achieving muscle hypertrophy and that increasing the weight in a certain exercise also stresses the muscle.”
Lazar advocates making very small changes but will always maintain the basic form of bodybuilding and the basic principles, such as compound exercises and muscle hypertrophy.
A typical workout week of Lazar’s looks something like:
Day One: Chest/Abs
- Flat Bench 4×8
- Incline Bench 4×8
- Decline Bench 4×8
- Pullover 4×8
- Hammer Press 3×8
- Dips 3x failure
- Weighted Sit Up 4x failure
- Hanging Leg Raise- 4x failure
- Side Bends 4x failure
Day Two: Back/Triceps
- Bent Over Row 4×8
- Deadlift 4×8
- Pulldowns 4×8
- Pull Ups 4×8
- Cable Row 4×8
- Shrugs 6×10
Day Three: Delts/Forearms/Abs
- Military Press Behind The Neck 3×8
- Machine Press 4×8
- Lateral Raises 4×8
- Weight Plate Front Raises 4×10
- Dumbbell Front Raises 4×8
- Reverse Pec Deck 4×10
- Reverse Fly’s (on incline bench) 4×8
- Weighted Sit Ups 4x failure
- Hanging Leg Raises 4x failure
- Side Bends 4x failure
- Side Crunches 4x failure
- Wrist Curl Behind Back 4x failure
- Reverse Wrist Curl Over Bench 4x failure
- Close Grip Bench Press 4×8
- Pushdowns 4×8
- EZ Bar Skull Crushers 4×10
- Cable Kickbacks 4×8
- EZ Bar Curls 4×8
- Wide Grip Curls 4×8
- Hammer Curls 4×8 (each hand)
- Concentration Curls 4×8
Day Five: Legs/Abs
- Squats 4×12
- Squat (to bench) 4×12
- Bulgarian Squat 4×12
- Quad Extensions 4×16
- Stiff Leg Deadlift 4×12
- Leg Curls 4×16
- Glute Kickbacks 4×20
- Calf Machine Raises 4×20
- Seated Calf Raises 4×20
- Leg Press Calf Raises 4×20
- Weighted Sit up 4x failure
- Air Bike 4x failure
- Side Bends 4x failure
- Barbell Twists 4x failure
Day 6 and 7 are rest days.
Lazar likes ordinary cardio for fat loss, including sprints on occasion. But he’s not a huge fan of doing cardio in the gym, he says; “I just don’t have the mood for that.” He’ll much prefer to get outside in the fresh air whilst burning the fat.
When he likes to run, Lazar will run the same distance each time but will try to beat his previous time. When it comes to HIIT, he will sprint for 100 meters then walk for 1 minute. Although cardio is an important part of his training, Lazar doesn’t like to do cardio for long periods of time, as he says that he’ll lose too much muscle mass.
“I don’t do cardio for a long period of time because that causes me to lose a lot of muscle mass. Also, I try to avoid some types of HIIT, which have more arm movements because that also causes me to lose muscle mass.”
For ectomorphs like himself, Lazar suggests that you shouldn’t do cardio for more than 20 minutes at a time to avoid losing too much muscle mass.
Bulking and Cutting
Lazar will bulk during the winter when his body fat goes up to around 10-12% and will lift very heavy weight to try and increase his muscle mass by a couple of pounds. He says, “every year I try to increase a little bit of quality muscle mass. When a person has reached his genetic potential, it is very hard to gain more muscle mass; without using anabolic steroids of course. Beginners put on muscle mass very fast because their muscles take any type of pressure on them as a type of stress.”
As Lazar’s diet is mostly low in carbohydrates all year round, he likes to keep his fats high, both saturated and unsaturated. This, he says, helps to keep his testosterone high, which in turn, helps to burn fat and retain muscle mass.
There was a time where he would diet using the ketogenic method, but as that method reduces muscle mass as well as body-fat, he now prefers to go for very long periods on a low carb approach to get the best results.
Lazar’s daily diet looks something like:
- Meal 1: Oatmeal, Eggs, Peanut Butter & Grapefruit
- Meal 2: Rice, Chicken & Broccoli
- Meal 3: Pasta, Tuna Fish & Avocado
- Meal 4: Rice, Chicken
- Meal 5: Salmon & Green Salad
- Meal 6: Cottage Cheese & Broccoli
Idols and Influences
Mr. Angelov motivation comes from his fans, they inspire him and keep him motivated to push harder each year to maintain his amazing physique. His motivation also comes from his clients who he’s helped transform their bodies and lifestyle. Seeing these results only makes Angelov want it more.
What we can learn from Lazar Angelov
There are a few pieces of advice that Lazar likes to give to anyone in need of inspiration, and that’s;
- Be patient – “Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
- Keep going and stay consistent with training and your goals.
- Don’t give up. Life’s hard, make sure you overcome your obstacles and keep going forward.
As we’ve seen, Lazar didn’t have it handed to him on a plate. There were times where he worked two jobs with very little money and even less rest. He kept going and made his dream into a reality with hard work and persistence.
With the same work ethic, patience and drive, you too can have your very own physique of greatness.