Terrence Ruffins – The World’s Youngest Classic Physique Olympian

IFBB Pro Terrence Ruffin – Interview

  • Age: 23
  • Height: 5’5”
  • Off-Season Weight: 190lbs
  • Competition Weight: 163lbs
  • Competition Record: (Chronological order)
  • 2016 IFBB Prestige Crystal Cup 3rd
  • 2016 IFBB Tampa Pro 1st
  • 2016 Mr. Olympia 9th
  • 2016 IFBB Dayana Cadeau Classic 2nd
  • 2016 IFBB Kentucky Muscle Pro 1st

Back Ground

AMJ – How long have you been training?

Terrence The first time I lifted a weight was in middle school for football. I continued here and there for that same purpose until 2012 when I found out about bodybuilding.

AMJ – What or who were your earliest influences in body building?

Terrence In 2012 I really got into bodybuilding. Wanting to learn more about it I bought two magazines; one with Dexter Jackson on the cover and the other with Joel Thomas.

AMJ – When was your first show? How did you do?

Terrence My first show happened in April 2013 I took 2nd in the teen class and last in the open. I weighed in at 144lbs.

AMJ – What did you learn from your first few shows that you think would help newbies?

Terrence Be confident on stage and practice posing. Sometimes shows are so close judges decide by seeing who has condition themselves enough through posing. They see this by checking if you’re shaking and stomach control.

AMJ – What is the highlight of your career thus far?

Terrence Most people would think the Olympia, but the biggest highlight for me so far has been winning my first show at the Tampa Pro.


AMJ – Could you explain your training methodology and give us an example of a workout for your favorite body part?

Terrence I always have a specific goal in mind when entering the gym but I how I achieve that goal is purely instinctual. What I mean by that is, I will have a specific goal, like improve upper chest but the exercise I choose to achieve that goal varies week to week or it may not change for a month or so. I also believe that to bring up weaker body parts you must increase the frequency and move whatever it is to the beginning of the workout. This why I start with calves before every workout.

Abductions/ Adduction 3×12-15
Leg ext 4×10-15 *Last Set (10 reps; 5 assisted rep; 2 forced negatives)
Squats 6×30,20,15,10,8,8 * Last set( drop set)
Hack Squats 4×10 *One rep (go all the way down, then half way up, back down, then all the way up)
Seated Leg curls 4×10-12 *once fatigued add 3-5 partials

AMJ – Are there any techniques that have helped you progress to where you are now?

Terrence Training body parts twice a week is the biggest thing followed by prioritization in my opinion. I also love working with bands/chains and doing forced negatives.

AMJ – What are some of your favorite exercises and conversely what do you think are the most overrated movements people use?

Terrence Favorite exercises Chest: incline hammer strength back-any hammer strength row Shoulders– prone cable laterals Legs-squats & leg ext Biceps-preacher curls Triceps– rope pushdowns.

I think the two most overrated movements would be the leg press & conventional deadlift. I don’t leg press very often and I never deadlift just rack pulls and hyper ext for lower erectors.

AMJ – Do you or have you incorporated any components of power lifting (power body building) into your routine?

Terrence Not really.

AMJ – What type of cardio do you find most effective to lose body fat?

Terrence   I think HIIT training on an arc trainer in conjunction with the steady paced stair master.

AMJ – Which muscle group do you consider to be a weakness? What are you currently doing to bring this up?

Terrence I think my arms and calves are my weakest body parts. I have traveled to train with John Meadows, Matt Porter and the Mi40Gym to learn as much as possible.

AMJ – Are there any particular lifts or movements that you feel exceptionally strong in?

Terrence I love to squat and think that is probably my best lift followed by the bench press.


AMJ – How would you explain your diet during contest prep? Is that the key to the insane conditioning you have achieved?

Terrence Long, slow and steady. Yes I think it is the reason I have consistently showed up in shape. I usually start around 15-20 weeks out.

AMJ – What do you think are some of the nutrition myths that bodybuilders still believe?

Terrence My favorite one is that you’re food has to taste bland for it to work. I’m a southern boy and need a lil seasoning salt on my food or I’ll lose it. Now I understand regulating sodium the last week or so (luckily I don’t have to), but I think people go overboard most of the time.

AMJ – What would be the best piece of advice you could give someone that is putting together a bodybuilding diet to gain size? What about for contest prep?


MASS: Starting out I believed I was overly concerned with what the scale said. This led me to overeating and accumulating tons of unnecessary fat. If I could go back and do it differently I would pay more attention to the mirror and slowly increase my calories accordingly.
PREP: Start a little early. 16 weeks or so is a good starting point. 8 weeks is not enough time for most new competitors to figure out their body.

AMJ – What foods make up the core of your nutrition?

Terrence Right now during the off season it is ground chicken mixed with ground turkey, white sweet potatoes, tilapia or cod, 96% lean ground beef and jasmine rice.

AMJ – What is your favorite clean meal?

Terrence Jasmine rice & fish

AMJ – What is your favorite cheat meal?

Terrence Either sushi or homemade fruit smoothies.

AMJ – What are your top 3 favorite supplements and why?

MPA Supps’ PharmGrade – One of the main reasons I like them is because of the quality of their products. In addition to that is the synergistic effect Phosphatidic Acid & EAAs, namely Leucine, has on triggering mTOR.
Cyclic dextrin – I have noticed a big difference since I’ve added this to my intra workout. It absorbs very quickly but surprisingly doesn’t spike your insulin. It still raises it but it keeps it level for a long period time which is perfect for my training style at the moment.
L-Citrulline – Great for pumps. It’s better at increasing arginine levels better than taking arginine itself!

AMJ – Do you have a coach? Do you coach others?

Terrence Yes Matt Porter he is a great coach and mentor. Yes I do coaching as well people can find me at www.ruffinready.com


AMJ – What are some of your interest outside of bodybuilding?

Terrence I love movies especially Science Fiction. I am a fan of most expressions of art. I have painted, drawn and more recently gotten into photography.

AMJ – Who are your role models/idols?

Terrence My role models in the model building world right now are really just Matt Porter & John Meadows one day I hope to have the reputation as a coach that they do in the bodybuilding world.

AMJ – If you could spend 1 hour with 3 people from history who would they be?

Terrence Tough choice haha, but Jesus, Will Smith, Neil Degrasse Tyson.

AMJ – How do you fare on the Air Force PT test?

Terrence Push-ups, sit ups and the waist measurement are never a problem, my issue is always the run. I usually start practicing 2-3 months out and like to get my weigh into the 170s so that my joints feel good during the impact.

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