John Quinlan Athlete Profile

John is a champion natural bodybuilder who made a successful jump into the world of professional wrestling.
John Quinlan

Quick Stats

  • John Quinlan
  • 10/30/1974
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • 5'10"
  • 190 lbs
  • Many
  • Biceps
  • Dumbbell Concentration Curls
  • Creatine Monohydrate
  • Killer Kowalski Wrestling School (1999)


Competition History

1998 North American Bodybuilding Association:

  • Tri-State Pro-Am Super Natural: 4th-Mens Open Light-Heavyweight Division, 1st-Junior Class (23 Years old & Younger)
  • USA Junior Nationals: 3rd-Mens Open Light-Heavyweight Division, 1st-Junior Class (23 Years old & Younger)
  • Pro-Am America Nationals: 2nd Overall- Junior Class

John Quinlan Pro WrestlerWhat is your background and how did you get started in bodybuilding?

I have been involved with bodybuilding, powerlifting, pro wrestling and modeling over the years since the age of 19.  I have appeared in television documentaries, commercials, art gallery print work and have had my likeness used on children's literature book covers.  I began to really focus on a consistent bodybuilding and powerlifting workout regimen during my college years at Saint Leo University (1993-1994) and Springfield College (1994-1997).

During his time at Springfield, I helped faculty members and classmates with their nutrition and exercise programs as well as training several members of the student body for the 1st Annual Springfield College Bodybuilding Show in the Spring of 1997.  I graduated from Springfield College in May of 1997 with a degree in Movement in Sports Studies.  After graduating from Springfield College, I was a competitive bodybuilder and professional wrestler.  I was a student of Walter "Killer" Kowalski at his famous professional wrestling school from 1999-2000.  I was an active pro wrestler who trained and traveled with my friend Ed Leslie (WWF Superstar Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake) until retiring from the business in the Spring of 2002.

Fitness will always be a very big part of my life.  Today, I still keep myself in top physical condition to the best of my ability and still currently participate in photoshoots and many other fitness related projects.  I got started in physique competitions mainly because most of my friends at Saint Leo University and Springfield College were into fitness.  They were competitive fitness models and bodybuilders who practiced living a healthy lifestyle.  I began living my life in the same fashion especially since I was around these guys quite a bit.  in 1998 they encouraged me to take my diet and exercise regimen to a higher level and participate in some natural bodybuilding physique competitions.

Why do you love bodybuilding?

While I was involved in bodybuilding back in the day there were many things I enjoyed about it.  First of all I must say that meeting and becoming friends with all the great people that I did in the fitness world while I was training was probably the biggest highlight for me.  Everybody shared the same goals, supported each other and had 100% respect for one another.  It was a great atmosphere and a great time for me.  Great memories that I will always have!  One of the greatest training partners I ever had, Manny Catalano!  I'll never forget you my friend while you were here on earth, thank you for all the support and love you showed me during my professional wrestling journey!

During my bodybuilding and fitness training, I always set personal goals for myself.  I worked hard to attain those goals one day at a time until it was achieved.  I apply the same method today in my daily life and it has helped me become a better person and parent.  Bodybuilding and fitness gave me a real sense of personal accomplishment.  The development of my body was a direct result of my own personal training.....nobody else.  My physique was a direct reflection on my strict training regimen and that it what I loved about bodybuilding and fitness!  I would never suffer because of somebody else was lazy, it was all me and I made the most of while enjoying every minute of it.


What is your training philosophy?

My training philosophy is one that I learned during my time at Springfield College.  It is a holistic approach to training.  Springfield College fitness stressed spirit, mind and body.  I learned that the best training involves a healthy level of all three.  As I physically train my body, I also want to properly strengthen myself mentally and spiritually.  This has been my training philosophy ever since and it has helped me become a better person.  My training routines during on and off-season were relatively similar with a few minor variations, although these variations may seem minor on the surface, they were needed to be consistently practiced over the course of 12-16 weeks in order to achieve my desired physical appearance.

In the off-season I would always train with a combination of moderate and heavy weights.  I would generally use an 8-10 rep range with some pyramids of 8-6-4-2 reps to gain some additional strength on those last couple of sets.  Cardio wouldn't be my main focus at this point because I was trying to get stronger but I would still do it to keep my heart rate up at a moderate level.  Couple of times per week was just enough to do the job and not sacrifice any real strength or size.  I would always try to get as much sleep as possible to ensure quality workouts so positive gains would be made every time I trained in the off-season.  In season!  Whether it was getting ready for a contest, a wrestling match or a photo routines all mirrored each other.  The only real difference was the length of time until my set target date.

Natural Bodybuilder John Quinlan

As I stated above, the training is similar with a few slight variations.  I increase my rep range from 8-10 to anywhere from 15-20 and NEVER rest more than 30 seconds in between sets.  My cardio is gradually increased as I get closer to my target date.  Starting out at 30 minutes. per day 3x per week for the first couple of weeks, then 45 minutes. 3-4x per week for the next few weeks and a full 60 minutes. 3-4x per week during the last 2 weeks.  I always go by how I look in the mirror and not what the scale says.  That is only good to check my weekly progress and to make sure I'm not losing too much too fast.  Whenever I am in a training program to cut up and lean out I always stay mentally focused and forget about what "the other guy" is doing.  Consistency is the main thing, if I stay consistent and give 100% of my effort everyday I'll never have any regrets and I'm happy with that!

What's a good workout routine that has given you results?

Monday - Chest, Calves and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Bench Press 3-4 10-8-6-4
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3 8
Dumbbell Flyes 3 8 to 15
Cable Crossovers 3 8 to 15
Calves and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Donkey Calf Raise 3 25
Crunches 3 25
Tuesday - Biceps, Triceps and Calves
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Barbell Curl 3 8 to 10
Dumbbell Concentration Curl 3 8 to 10
Seated Nautilus Bicep Curls 1 To Failure
Exercise Sets Reps
Tricep Dips 3 25
Skullcrushers 3 8 to 10
Cable Tricep Extensions 1 To Failure
Cardio: Treadmill 20 minutes @ 70-85% of your maximum intensity level.
Wednesday - Shoulders, Neck and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Shrugs 3 8 to 12
Standing Dumbbell Front Raise 3 8 to 10
Dumbbell Lateral Raise 3 15
Military Press Behind the Neck 3 8
Neck and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
4-Way Neck Machine - Reps Performed in Each Direction 1 8 to 10
Seated Abdominal Kickouts 3 25
Thursday - Quads, Calves and Cardio
Exercise Sets Reps
Squats (Using Strict Form) 3-4 10-8-6-4
Dumbbell Lunge 3 8 to 10
Leg Extension 3 8 to 10
Exercise Sets Reps
Standing Calf Raise 1 To Failure
Cardio: Exercise Bike 20 minutes @ 70-85% of your maximum intensity level.
Friday - Back, Forearms and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Rows 3 8 to 10
Lat Pull Down 3 8 to 10
Pull Ups 3 Max Reps
Forearms and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Reverse Curl 3 15 to 25
Decline Bench Crunch 3 25

If you have to pick only 3 exercises, what would they be and why?

  1. Barbell. Bench Press.  Your chest is the first thing people look at when measuring the quality of your physique.  This is the "core" exercise for that and all the rest are built around it.  
  2. Barbell Bicep Curls. What is a strong physique without good biceps.....a very important area to focus on.  
  3. Barbell Squats. The most important exercise for building overall strength and symmetry for the lower body to compliment the upper body.

What's the best training tip you could give to others?

Getting the desired physique you are looking for takes time and it doesn't happen overnight.  Be consistent with your training and diet and over the course of time you will gradually attain all of your fitness goals.  Always maintain a positive attitude along the way as well as being open to others advice which can also help you become a better athlete.


John Quinlan NutritionWhat is your philosophy on nutrition?

My philosophy on nutrition is pretty basic, be consistent.  Every time you eat say to yourself, "is this food good for me".  The human body is like a machine, if you put junk into it and don't take care of slowly begin to exhibit negative results and ultimately break down.  People practice bad nutrition habits slowly over time when they are younger and carry these habits over into adulthood.  Before they know it, they are overweight and even obese.  Always be consistent with your nutrition and practice good eating habits from a young age.  This way you will never be too "high" or  too "low".  The hardest thing in the world for somebody to accomplish is losing a very large amount of weight after many years of nutritional neglect.  If you always stay on top of your nutrition and consistently eat right over time these negative effects will never be an issue for you.

Give us a typical day in your off season diet:

  • Breakfast: Protein shake - 2 scoops of whey protein / 1 cup of oatmeal / 1 banana / 1 cup of raisons / 1 cup of total cereal ALL blended together with spring water and crushed ice / 1-2 glasses of water  
  • Mid-Morning Snack: 8 egg whites / 2 slices of German Dark wheat bread / 1 orange / 1-2 glasses of water
  • Lunch: 2 cups of pasta / grilled chicken / garden salad with oil and vinegar / 1-2 glasses of water
  • Mid-Afternoon Snack: Protein shake / 1 apple / 1-2 glasses of water
  • Dinner: Grilled chicken, lean meat or fish / 1 cup of brown rice / steamed vegetables / 1-2 glasses of water

Give us a typical day in your diet (contest prep):

  • Breakfast: 8 egg whites / 1 service cream of rice made with water / 2 glasses of water
  • Mid-Morning Snack: 2 Scoops of whey protein powder mixed with water / handful of blueberries / 2 glasses of water
  • Lunch: 2 grilled chicken breasts / 1 baked sweet potato / fresh steamed green beans / 2 glasses of water
  • Mid-Afternoon Snack: Garden salad (spinach) with 1 can of white tuna on Top / 2 glasses of water
  • Dinner: Baked haddock / steamed mixed vegetables / 2 glasses of water
  • Late Night Snack: 8 egg whites / 1 sugar-free popsicle / 2 glasses of water

What are your favorite meals and foods?

Anything that is fresh and tastes good.  All lean meats and vegetables when cooked with the right amount seasonings taste great!

Favorite cheat food?

Greek pizza with extra cheese.

What's the best nutrition tip you could give to others?

Be consistent with your nutrition.  Always practice good eating habits on a diet you can stick with on a daily basis.  Eating healthy is a lifestyle.  Any diet that you can't be consistent with over the course of time needs to be modified to one that suits you individually to be successful.

John Quinlan Eating habits


What supplements do you use that give you great results? How do you use them?

  1. Creatine monohydrate helped me recover faster from my workouts and gave me some added strength.  I never did a loading phase, just 1-2 scoops with my post workout morning shake.
  2. Vanadyl sulfate always helped keep my muscles full, pumped and vascular while dieting for a show, a pro wrestling match or a photo shoot.  I would generally take 30-50 mgs per day with meals.
  3. Impact 250 always gave me a great pump and kept me strong during my workouts.

What brands do you think are offering the best products at the moment?

Puritan’s Pride is probably one of the best over the Internet right now. 

What do you think is a good off season muscle building stack?

I had good results with creatine monohydrate.

What do you think is a good pre-contest/fat loss stack?

Lipo-6 is a great fat burner on the market right now mixed with vanadyl sulfate is a good fat loss stack. 

Advice For Others

John Quinlan BodybuilderWhat are the 3 best tips you'd give to someone thinking about competing in natural bodybuilding?

  1. Be consistent with your training and diet throughout the year.  
  2. Set your goals and work hard everyday to achieve them.
  3. Be open to other competitors corrective criticism, they have done it longer than you and are usually more than willing to help you avoid some of the early mistakes they made.

What is your best advice for looking your best on competition day?

Stay mentally focused and relaxed.  Be confident in yourself.  You have done everything you can to get your body in tip-top condition and have endured the strict diet and exercise regimen throughout the process.  Just go out there and have fun with it.  Not many people have what it takes to get in this kind of physical condition that you are in today and that is a victory in itself.

How do you stay motivated? What advice would you give to someone who's having trouble staying on track?

The following 5 tips are what keep me motivated and I would pass on to somebody who's having trouble staying on track:

  1. Keep your workouts new and exciting by constantly switching your fitness plan around.
  2. Have fun!  The more you enjoy your fitness routine the greater the chances are that you will stick with it.
  3. Don't just look at your outside physical improvements but the overall health benefits you are gaining from your fitness plan as well.
  4. Make mental notes of your progress, look at all the gains you have made since you started and the positive compliments you have received from others along the way which will really fuel your motivation.
  5. Set realistic fitness goals for yourself and when you achieve them reward yourself for a job well done.

Future Plans

What shows have you got coming up, where can we see you compete?

I currently no longer compete.  After just 1 year of competitive bodybuilding I entered Killer Kowalski's World Famous Professional Wrestling School and never looked back.  It was a great time for me though and I will always have 100% respect for every competitor out there for their dedication and discipline!

What would you like to achieve in your natural bodybuilding career?

Being able to compete on stage like the rest of my friends was my goal from the start and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Favorite Competitors/Idols

Who are your favorite bodybuilders and idols?

I guess if I had to say it would be a bodybuilder named Charlie Moss.  He was the guest poser at the 1st Annual Springfield College Bodybuilding Show back in 1997 that I trained a few of the competitors for.  This guy has competed in show after show, always in shape and the true definition of consistency.

How Can People Contact You?

How can people contact you?

People can contact me at:

John Quinlan Wrestler

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1 Comment+ Post Comment

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Posted Wed, 08/15/2012 - 07:44
john bradshaw

wow man you have lived the dream