Joshua Hibbert is an award winning athlete coming up in the competitive world of Bodybuilding. Straight out of Edmonton, AB, he is one of Tuffhouses original reps for the TuffSports line. Josh has overcome a number of obstacles and challenges to achieve professional status at Bodybuilding. In between his vigourous workouts and travel. He is a full time welder & handyman. Tuffhouse had the opportunity to sit down with Josh and discuss everything from what it takes to train as a bodybuilder to his favorite comic book characters. Here’s what we learned from this real life Superman….
Name,age & profession/sport?
Josh: Joshua Hibbert, age 35 professional natural Bodybuilder.
Where are you from?
Josh: I was born and raised in Edmonton.
How long have you been Bodybuilding?
Josh: This November will be my third anniversary.
Who’s your biggest role model:
Josh: I don’t have just one. I’ve always grown up watching wrestling, Arnie movies & Stallone. The old icons of action movies. Because I compete naturally, and those guys didn’t, it’s different. I still look up to them and some of their work ethics. It’s just a little different.
What inspired you to become a bodybuilder?
Josh: A good friend of mine that I met and started training with just convinced me to try doing some dieting, I was very large I was about 305 pounds I was a pretty big guy. I tried it, just cutting some things out, minor things while we were working out together. I noticed a lot of changes. I noticed I was able to keep up with my strength, I looked better, I felt better. Naturally after about 6 months of that (he had been competing off and on for about 25 years at the time) he said, you should try doing a show. I said, I don’t know about that. As far as actually dieting and having to stick to something. About another month or so I said huh? Whatever! We’ll give it a try what’s the worst that could happen!? If about halfway through if I don’t want to do it I’ll just stop. So I did it , it was hard, it was a big change having to know what I was doing and to follow such a stringent program. But I did it, it was quite an experience. I enjoyed it. It kind of gave me that bug where I wanted to do it again. My first time there was a lot of slip ups & meals that weren’t supposed to be there. The second time I was like well I did it this good and changed. 305 pounds down to 220, so 85 pounds in a year. I felt great, it was the best I had looked as grown man. So I was like what happens if I do this again and really stick to it. So then I tried it for my second time around. Things were a lot different and by then. I was just hooked on doing it and just enjoyed it.
What sort of diet plan or regimen do you stick to while training?
Josh: It’s all given to me by my coach, so it changes as to where I am with my show & where I am with my progress. There’s more food in the beginning, then things change and taper off. Not lots, but there’s minor adjustments to everything. My diet will change with my trainings. I’ll go from just eating the same things all the time to eating more food on certain days. It is less food on other days to coincide with what’s going on at the gym. All that changes and it just changes based on how my body is responding. This time around we didn’t do a diet, he just said I’m all caught up and I don’t need to. I’m in a better spot leading into it. So basically it just changes all the time. Lower amounts of carbs or none for periods of days. It’s great to have a coach because I get told what to do and I follow the plan.
Where do you see yourself going in the future in the sport of bodybuilding?
Josh: Continuing upwards. Going into my ninth or tenth show I think it was, for my third year I had gotten out of just doing shows locally. Last year I traveled to Calgary three times. I earned my pro card status & my Elite status, from two different organizations. In November, for just under five weeks, I’m going to Toronto to go for another pro card I qualified to compete for. If I get it, I qualify to compete for world championships. I made it onto an International stage, in two years and now I’m going for an International one in three. The pro cards allow me to go compete, the one would be in the states, the other one I believe would be in five countries, Australia, The UK and others. It opens a lot of doors, you can add travel into it, make a trip out of it. Definitely getting out of my element with the distance traveled and the caliber. It’s a whole fitness expo weekend. It’s probably the biggest thing I’ve had a chance to be at or be a part of. The goal is to get sponsored, get picked up by a company or two & get paid to do what I love doing. I work and I have a career but to do this and have the opportunity, who knows where it could go.
Where can fans gain access to you online & your upcoming events?
Josh: November is going to be streamed online, I know the whole weekend is going to be streamed. As soon as I get that information I’ll be able to share it. Not sure if it will be cost issue or not, hopefully not. There will be a way to see this one. It does suck a little bit when you go away and you can only send stuff when you return. It will be nice that it’s live so anyone in Edmonton will get a chance to see it. I have my Facebook account under Joshua Hibbert, I have Instagram Biggs2332. The show that I’m doing is with ultimate fitness events and their website is ‘ufeshows.com’. The event is the world championships. The event involves conferences, seminars, workshops etc.
What’s the most challenging thing about the sport?
Josh: Every aspect of it is pretty challenging, I mean dragging yourself to the gym every day, even when you don’t want to. Especially now that you’re getting into that phase where the foods down. I’m feeling the lack of energy. Consistency I guess with the rest of your life. I work, I’m a Red Seal Welder. I have to be on the ball if I leave I’m going to take a whole lot of stuff with me. If I’m working I might have 12-14 hour days. I have to get my stuff done even though I just want to sleep. So there’s that, and just sticking to it. I mean I rarely seldom have a day when I’m like “why am I doing this? Is it worth it?” I’ve had em’ and really I just kind of push myself through it. I’ve never left the gym and not been happy I hadn’t went. Most of the times that I haven’t been motivated to go at all ended up being the more intense crazier times that I’ve pushed myself. There is a point where you want to keep going but you shouldn’t. I’ve been lucky with this, I want to do it right I don’t like doing things half ass. I’m easily self-motivated in that regard. There’s a point if I’m too sick I won’t go, but if I have a little sniffle that’s not enough to hold me back. If my day gets cluttered and I’m running behind & I don’t have a lot of time to work out I don’t have the luxury of saying “well I just skip it and do it tomorrow” because I’ve eaten the food to go to the gym. I’ve been to the gym at midnight, one in the morning to get it in. Because that’s what I’ve got to do.
Have you ever been seriously injured and how do you avoid injury?
Josh: Not directly related to the bodybuilding. I did have a hernia that was discovered last year. It was something I had had for some time because I had felt it, but I didn’t know what it was. In the middle of getting ready for my show in November last year I ended up going in for routine surgery to have it taken care of. Unfortunately I had complications & ended up hospitalized, I had a blot clot. I was out of the gym for four to five weeks, in the middle of my twenty week prep which could have really damaged me to the point where I couldn’t compete. I didn’t tell too many people, a couple best friends knew. I just kind of followed doctor’s orders, when I was able to come back & slowly get back at it I did. I had a goal of at least doing the show. I didn’t expect to do very well, with such a gap in the middle. I just wanted to be able to do it for myself to say I wasn’t going to let that dictate what I had already planned to do. I was lucky. I took it easy coming back but I got back into it pretty good. My diet took care of me through it so I didn’t lose too much as far as conditioning or size. I ended up having my best show to date in November, where I won my pro card and was in the best shape I had ever been in.
Do you have any nicknames?
Josh: Biggs, has kind of been one since I have been a kid. It’s off a videogame, NBA Street. He’s one of the characters, so that’s kind of stuck with me. I’ve used it as e-mails, my Instagram & what not since the junior high days. I get called all kinds of nicknames in relation to big things. Hulks and gorillas and monsters and what not. Nothing really sticks one person might have a name for me. But that really is it!
As one of the original reps for Tuff Sports what do you think we could do as a record label to inspire and represent Athletes?
Josh: Just the support, if somebody’s trying to do something and it helps to get them some type of exposure. In my sport that’s a big thing, when you want to be talked about and noticed. If you want a clothing line or a supplement line backing you, having support and getting your name out there is a definite bonus and just even getting people to see it. If you guys could put out the link for my show and more people watch it, it helps the sport in general & helps people see that people from Edmonton are going all the way out there to do these things. Any athlete would be in need of help for financial sponsorship or something given to them that helps them in what they’re trying to achieve. We don’t get paid for most of these sports until we compete. I’m a professional bodybuilder and essentially at this show I could win money, but there are a lot of shows I do that I don’t. It costs me money to do it. All the training, the gym fees, the coaching, the supplements, the food. The food is biggest one. It’s kind of a sport that you pay to play. Anything that can alleviate that to any degree is always a benefit. I think for any sport that would be beneficial. I’m lucky in this sport I don’t have sporting equipment, really I don’t wear much onstage. Luckily with my job I have a lot of benefits which get used to the max because of how hard I am on my body. Anything that can make it a little easier for people to compete. If it means getting them somewhere or like I said just getting them some exposure is always going to be helpful.
Do you have one favorite go-to song that really amps you up to train?
Josh: I can’t really say I have one song, I have a lot on my phone. I listen to a lot of internet radio just because of the wifi and it streams so it kind of changes up. I’ve kind of outplayed my playlist on my phone, I have an ipod. There’s no one song, there’s lots. I don’t mind some good old school DMX or Busta Rhymes or some high energy techno music. It just kind of depends, I like to have different music playing.
What do you do when you feel yourself losing motivation and what do you traditionally do to focus?
Josh: Just remember why I’m doing it, how much I’ve put into it, what I want out of it. No one’s going to really get on me if I say “Ah it’s too much, screw it I’m done” or “I’m taking the year off” or whatever. I want to do it, I know there’s going to be moments like that, I just keep pushing through. I kind of was tired today, but I got into the gym and five, ten, fifteen minutes and it’s gone. I do what I’ve got to do. Sometimes life gets in the way. The other night I had to leave in the middle of a workout because somebody came to my house I had deal with and speak to, I did go back. I know what I want to do with it and I know it’s all on me, however much I put into it and stick to it and be consistent with it, is what I’m going to get out of it. Anything I don’t go at fully at, at the end of the day, if I don’t come out on top, those are going to be the things that are in the back of my head. “Remember those times you pissed around and didn’t train or had weak session?”. I don’t want those doubts in my head. I remember being at my best, giving it my best. If somebody was better, well kudos to them. But I have no reason to say I could have done better.
What was your most memorable moment competing?
Josh: Either the very first show, walking out, it was at the Winspear center in Edmonton. The last time I had been there was walking out on the stage for my graduation. So it was kind of fitting that I was back in the same place for something as big. Definitely the first day getting out there, was pretty memorable. Just getting through the jitters, then coming back in the evening and feeling like I own the place. Also last November, winning my pro card, after the summer of surgery and thing that I dealt with. To actually come out and be as good as I was and get that recognition. Getting it in the mail was pretty nice. It’s mounted on my wall now.
How do you feel about the Edmonton music scene?
Josh: I try to get out to as much as I can, event wise. I think it’s doing better than it has in the past and growing, which is a good thing. It can always grow more, it can always be more. Unfortunately my thoughts on the current state of music in general are not the greatest. I personally listen to the old-school channels on my Serius, I almost can’t stand anything that’s come out in the last few years as far a commercial stuff. I do like to get out to the shows and I do enjoy them. I was at the CUT Hip Hop awards, the pre party for that, a couple other local things. I try to get out when I’m not training or working.
What’s your motto in life?
Josh: It’s never too late to re-write your own story