|By Vince “Fitness Financier” Pe|
My good friend, Aric Sudicky, stopped by this month to spend some time with me to chat about all of his latest projects and how he got started on his journey into fitness. If you’re not familiar with his name you only need to open up a fitness magazine and I’m certain you’ll be able to find his image and his unmistakable physique graced within the pages or in one of his many fitness commercials on television.
I’ve worked with so many fitness athletes in my time and I can honestly say that Aric Sudicky has found the perfect balance with fitness modeling and applying his expertise into a career. At Medpoint Fitness, Aric provides customized exercise programs to his clients based on strong ethics, results and use of proven science (http://www.medpoint.ca/fitness/).
Q: Aric, you’ve appeared in countless Canadian and international fitness magazines. You’re also one of the most recognized fitness celebrities out there. When and where did the love for fitness originate from?
Vince, thank you for the opportunity to interview for Strong Athlete.
I have always been a “science guy”, constantly asking questions and learning how to manipulate body composition without the assistance of drugs. This combined with my competitive personality launched me into varsity athletics while constantly learning how to naturally push my genetics to the limit. I started resistance training at age 13 and continued to train throughout my varsity volleyball career. After taking a hiatus from varsity sports I solely focused on growing lean mass, which resulted in earning my first photo shoot and magazine publication. As they say, the rest is history. I have been in 60+ publications since 2007.
My main driving passion these days is helping others using what I have learned over the course of my career. This is why, in my opinion, I have the most rewarding “day job” in the industry!
Q: You competed on stage a couple of times before transitioning permanently to Fitness Modeling. Which show was it and what was the experience like getting on stage for the first time?
I have competed twice, once for FAME very early in my career (where I placed 2nd in Fitness model and 2nd in Muscle Model) and once for Fitness Star when the organization first started in 2009. I won my division, the audience choice award and “best abs” award which was a lot of fun. Unlike the 12 week “lean” phase many are left with after a very high calorie offseason, I signed up to compete on the Monday the week of the show. Always stay in shape! I cannot say that enough to aspiring fitness models.
Getting on stage allowed my competitive side to thrive and also allowed me to personally experience what a competitor goes through during the leaning phase of training. This experience helps me relate to how clients feel physically and emotionally during contest prep.
Always stay in shape! I cannot say that enough to aspiring fitness models.
Q: You are one of the rare male athletes that make a living in our industry without having to get on stage anymore. What made you decide to stop competing and focus strictly on fitness modeling?
Competing is an excellent opportunity to see what you are capable of in terms of dedication and sticking to a strict regime. It also provides the excitement of getting on stage against other elite physiques. I often say to aspiring competitors or current ones debating to continue, “If you enjoy competition, battling on stage and the process of getting there do it! If you want to be a fitness pro or model it is far from necessary.”
That is the truth and why I have no desire to compete again. My passion is to help as many people as possible.
If I may….there are a couple of myths out there to bust with respect to competing:
First, you do not have to compete to be an accomplished fitness model.
Second, 99% of competitors will lose money competing. Just like any other profession, I believe ethical, educated health professionals should be compensated for providing a physique and/or knowledge to the public. Unfortunately far too many people in fitness work for free.
Lastly and most importantly, getting on stage is not my passion. I had a great comment from a 60+ year old client this morning who has lost 40lbs and been removed from 7 medications. “Aric, so many trainers are focused on the demographic they see in magazines but there are arguably millions of baby boomers in desperate need of help!” Changing and in some cases extending a life is a humbling and extremely rewarding thing to be a part of. This is my passion and what I am focused on pursuing for the rest of my career.
Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy fitness modeling, writing and being in commercials; however, even with these endeavors I ensure they also spread a message of health and longevity.
Q: Aric, you are part of an esteemed list of rising male fitness models in the industry. You, Nathane Jackson, Obi Obidike, Rob Riches (and more) are some of the most predominant names in the fitness modeling world today. What is it like to be compared to this very distinguished class of athletes?
Allow me to be the first to admit, I am NOT at the top, especially if the US is considered! There are a handful of California guys especially who are getting booked for a lot of jobs! James Ellis, Max Wettstein, David Kimmerle, Matus Valent and THE Greg Plitt should be added to that list.
I’m humbled to be compared to these guys. They represent a huge following and have all worked extremely hard for their achievements. Training nonstop since age 13 I know what it takes to be in CONTEST SHAPE for more than a decade.
With respect to modeling and making a “top list”, I have had to make a conscious choice between business success and modeling work in recent years. Everything comes down to time and I only allocate so much time to promoting myself as a “model” in the industry. For the last few years, 50+hrs/week I have worked tirelessly to build our medically integrated fitness program at Medpoint. If I dedicated that time to creating modeling/commercial contacts and building a larger social media following I am confident I could be earning the nod for more opportunities of this nature. I am a health care centre manager and fitness professional first, model second.
My passion is to help as many people as possible.
Q: That is an awesome answer, Aric. Very practical and realistic. You recently shot for REPS! Magazine. What was the project for?
This most recent work for Robert Kennedy Publishing was a lot of fun because the times are changing in fitness! In the last few months I have shot for MuscleMag and extensively for REPS. Magazines are aiming for more “athletic” looking guys who can demo more difficult movements, which has led to regular booking for skinny guys like me! Most recently, we shot a combo dumbbell/suspension training feature for the new issue of REPS.
Q: I’ve worked with so many fitness models and bodybuilders and you are one of the most professional fitness athletes I’ve ever met. We chatted some time ago about the great Jason Breeze, fitness photographer extraordinaire, and your first shoot with him. You got sick during the shoot but pushed through. Can you tell us what happened that day?
What a day that was! I became sick 48hrs before an important shoot with Jay we were going to use for multiple magazine submissions back in 2008. I could barely eat or hold water for almost 24hrs for the shoot. I refused to cancel and lose this opportunity so I showed up ready to perform. We managed to shoot for 4+hrs when I started to get the shakes and even Breeze himself advised we call it a day. A few months later our shots were featured in a spread for Maximum Fitness (now REPS). If Michael Jordan can play with the flu, I can model with a stomach virus!
If Michael Jordan can play with the flu, I can model with a stomach virus!
Q: I love it and completely agree. All of our models and athletes should have that same approach and views with their profession! Tell us about your radio shows. You currently host two of them. What is the content of the shows and how did all of this come to fruition?
Radio work is awesome! I am blessed with the opportunity to host “It’s Your Health” with arguably the two best news talk hosts in our region, Al Coombs and Mike Stubbs. Each week I cover a new topic in fitness or nutrition and finish by busting a popular fitness myth. At this point I have been hosting weekly for over two years covering hundreds of topics. You can listen to any MP3 audio file here: http://www.cjbk.com/Channels/MedpointHealthTip/home.aspx
My other segment is the “Medpoint Minute” where I record a 60 second long informative piece that airs on a second station in our area. It is a high energy segment and normally we choose to bust a popular health and fitness myth! For example: are low carb diets necessary for fitness competitors to shed body fat? What about dehydration prior to getting on stage? Perhaps future topics!
These shows stemmed from an initial contest where one host, Al Coombs, worked with me in a weight loss contest against his co-host, Mike, who trained at home on his own. Guess who won the contest? Since then I have stayed on as a regular show host each Tuesday at 4:45pm for AM 1290 in London, Ontario or live online at the link above. This has also become a great way to show potential clients (magazines, commercial production companies etc.) that I am not just a print model, but a health expert who can comfortably speak in a public forum.
Q: You’ve also done a number of fitness television spots. What was it like to first see yourself on television and what was the reaction from some of your friends and family? I know being immortalized on television is a milestone in anyone’s career.
Being on TV is a lot of fun and definitely hit home the first time I saw a commercial air. My family and friends are accustomed to my extremely motivated type A personality and these days expect nothing less. Our dreams are achievable, we just have to reach out and grab them.
Q: Previously mentioned, one of the things you are most proud of is your day job at Medpoint Health Care where you founded Southwestern Ontario’s first medically integrated fitness programs. Can you tell us more about it? How did you get started there?
I have experienced what it is like to work at a “big box” gym with high client volume, many trainers, hard commissioned sales people and often a reduced standard of care. I teamed up with the president of Medpoint in 2009 to create what is now a functioning medically integrated fitness program. Every client is put through a 3hr protocol of medical testing including blood work, lung function, fitness evaluation, Bod Pod body composition test, bone density, 12 lead ECG. You name it, we test it. Using this data our team of experts prescribe exercise and nutrition for personal training. We have changed and potentially saved a lot of lives over the last two years. The power of diet and exercise should never be underestimated if prescribed properly!
We have changed and potentially saved a lot of lives over the last two years.
Q: Aric, I interact with numerous aspiring fitness models. What advice can you give to them so they can mimic some of your success? I feel many are misled into the wrong gigs.
My best advice is to be true to you and honestly answer these questions:
What is your true passion in life? What motivates you?
Are you interested in modeling or competing? (one is not necessary for the other)
Where do you want to be in 10-15yrs and what are you doing? (we can’t model forever)
With these clearly answered you can implement a plan of action, always staying true to your passion. There will always be pressures to be like the guys or girls in magazines, but the reality is publications are often looking for the NEW look. Embrace your physique!
Q: Can you share any future projects that we’ll be seeing you in soon?
I am working on a few projects, one is BIG and will change the way we apply fitness and nutrition knowledge in the industry. I cannot say much more than that, but I am very excited for this launch later in 2012! Back to your passions, this one is right in line with mine! Stay tuned! I also have a lot of images that have been submitted to various magazines, pick up any fitness magazine and you will most likely find me in there.
Thanks again for the opportunity to interview. Please check out Aric’s Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/AricSudicky.EducateMotivateInspire
Vince “Fitness Financier” Pe
Vince Pe, founder of the Fitness Financier, has spent the last ten years in the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He has worked for some of the most prominent sports nutrition companies in North America, dealt closely with the IFBB, NPC, WNBF and WBFF organizations, and managed some of the industry’s top athletes, including Mr. Olympia champions. Vince will be a regular contributor with feature interviews from some of the most interesting personalities in bodybuilding, fitness and martial arts. For more info about Vince, check out his company website at www.fitnessfinancier.com.