July 12, 2021 9 min read
If you’re into bodybuilding or weightlifting, you have likely heard of professional bodybuilder, powerlifter, and fitness legend CT Fletcher.
With several championships under his belt and an outstanding physique in his prime, you’re probably wondering just how he achieved all his accomplishments.
Sure, his high-volume, high-intensity workouts are no joke, but what about the fuel for all those killer workouts?
We know you’re here for the supplements, but taking a look into Fletcher’s life can provide a better understanding of his training and fitness techniques. Furthermore, Fletcher’s life events may surprise you and even motivate you in your own journey to greatness.
Fletcher, born in 1959 in Arkansas, grew up in Watts and Compton, California. He was a member of a highly religious family and grew up highly involved in the church. His father, a preacher, was often physically abusive to Fletcher. Fletcher would eventually become involved in gangs and had little hope for an academic career. Because of this, Fletcher turned to the Army at the age of 18.
Joining the Army was nothing short of an amazing event in Fletcher’s life. During his time in the Army, his love for fitness and training blossomed, providing him with the first stepping stones towards greatness. You may be surprised to know Fletcher’s first love was actually karate and martial arts.
It wasn’t until 1980 that Fletcher would first begin strength training, getting him interested in bodybuilding and later, powerlifting. Through Fletcher’s childhood abuse, the top athlete was able to develop a mental toughness and drive that allowed him to become legendary in his discipline.
Fletcher turned his bad upbringing into a motivation for extreme success. His accomplishments include being a three-time World Bench Press and World Strict Curl champion. In his early sixties, Fletcher, nicknamed “Superman of Compton” still hasn’t stopped striving for greatness.
These days, he works hard running his Iron Addicts gym, focusing on his work with iSatori, and staying highly active on social media. You can find him on his Youtube channel, where he has over 1 million subscribers and a huge collection of inspiring fitness videos where you can watch CT Fletcher workout and talk about fitness.
CT Fletcher is the first to admit he’s made a myriad of mistakes, his past dietary habits being one of the biggest ones. In an attempt to get as big as possible, Fletcher ate fast food meals incredibly often. He definitely lacked knowledge then, but was mostly focused on winning competitions rather than being the epitome of health.
These poor dietary choices led to Fletcher needing what would turn out to be an incredibly complicated open-heart surgery. This convinced Fletcher to make huge life changes. He turned from burgers and fries to a diet plan rich in nutrients, including:
As you can see, Fletcher prioritized protein for reasons we’ll get to later. Additionally, and just as important, Fletcher was no stranger to carbs and made them a big part of his diet. Despite what you may think about carbs, they are an essential part of every athlete’s life.
You’re probably wondering how Fletcher’s diet matters in the context of this article. It was around the time of Fletcher’s big diet changes that he also began utilizing the power of supplements.
A high level of fitness is often achieved through a combination of diet, training, and a well-formulated supplement stack. CT Fletcher used a wide array of workout supplements to aid his extreme gains and wins.
Supplements are really the cherry on top of all the hard work you put in through diet and training, here are some of the various supplements Fletcher used to enhance performance and gains:
Pre-workout is a highly popular and widely used supplement. This supplement is taken before a workout, hence the name. While no two pre-workouts are made the same, the typical main ingredient is caffeine, making pre-workout a great tool to use if you struggle with sluggish and tiring workouts.
Many pre-workouts come in a flavored powder form, which can make taking it before your workouts a fun treat. However, you can also get pre-workout in pill form. Some pre-workouts are the equivalent of having three cups of coffee, so it isn’t for the faint of heart.
Of course, if you’re highly sensitive to caffeine, there are a wide variety of pre-workouts to choose from.In addition to caffeine, pre-workouts typically contain creatine and beta-alanine, both of which can boost athletic performance.
Beta-alanine is used for enhanced muscle endurance, helping you push through to the very last rep of each set. Don’t be deterred by the science-y sounding name, this supplement is actually naturally occurring within our bodies.
Beta-alanine aids in the production of carnosine, which is found in your muscles and helps your muscles regulate the amount of acid that is produced. High levels of carnosine keep the acid levels in your muscles lower, allowing you to work hard for extended periods of time before becoming too tired.
While beta-alanine is not known to increase strength, working out longer can lead to more efficient and effective gym sessions, especially if you tend to leave the gym early.Beta-alanine is not adequately studied, so many of the potential benefits are unproven or unknown.
However, there is some evidence that beta-alanine supplements are especially helpful to older people, aiding in muscle retention and movement.
BCAA stands for branched-chain amino acids and refers to the 20 amino acids needed for protein synthesis. Some of these amino acids are not naturally produced by the body, relying solely on a healthy diet for intake.
However, as we all know, a perfect diet can be very difficult to achieve, so BCAA supplements work to fill in the gaps. BCAAs have a variety of amino acids and therefore a large variety of benefits. Some benefits of BCAAs include:
Another amino acid, L-citrulline is a naturally occurring and non-essential amino acid. Non-essential means the body can produce this amino acid on its own. However, you can take more L-citrulline to potentially boost performance in the gym.
L-citrulline is converted into l-arginine and nitric oxide in the body, both of which aid in several heart functions. It is no surprise that CT Fletcher takes these supplements, as he has suffered from heart issues in the past.
Next to pre-workout, creatine is one of the most popular fitness supplements. Why? It has several proven benefits to exercise and health. Like amino acids, creatine aids the body in muscular endurance. Additionally, it can even protect muscles from deteriorating and losing volume.
Creatine works within the muscle cells to increase the production of phosphocreatine, which provides your muscles with adequate energy to do lots of hard work. When there is extra unnecessary creatine in the muscles, it is converted into ATP, or adenosine triphosphate, which further helps the muscle maintain energy for lifting.
This increased energy of the muscle allows you to lift longer, increasing the potential for muscle gains. Creatine also helps the muscle fibers regenerate, which aids in hypertrophy. Creatine can also help the muscles retain water, so they are well-hydrated and have a fuller appearance.
Creatine has also shown to protect the brain and positively contribute to neurological processes.
Creatine is often found in pre-workout supplements, but it can be taken on its own if you aren’t a fan of pre-workouts or feel like you need an extra boost.
So, if you’re in the gym doing Fletcher’s famous “Armed Warfare” arm workout, try using creatine before or after your workout to see the benefits for yourself.
Vitamins are really just an essential part of every diet. However, we tend to come up short in our intake. Vitamin deficiencies can lead to many health problems, thus affecting our ability to perform in the gym. Vitamins, also referred to as micronutrients, aid the body in several vital functions.
As an example, vitamin A alone promotes healthy bones and soft tissue, which includes muscle tissue. Each vitamin has a role that helps our overall health. Other important vitamins for athletes include:
Many vitamins help the body feel energized when paired with a good diet. This can increase output in the gym and, therefore, increase your potential for massive gains.
You could take individual vitamin supplements, or utilize multivitamins, which often contain several essential micronutrients in one pill. While it is best to source your vitamins from your food and environment, it is understandable if you come up short.
You may be surprised to learn that protein is made of amino acids. Protein is a necessity for muscle repair and recovery, which leads to muscle growth. When lifters pump iron, they actually create small tears in their muscle fibers. Amino acids work to repair these tears and build the muscle stronger so it can sustain more stress.
You’re probably wondering if high-quality tasty protein powder exists, why should I bother with BCAAs? The truth is, while BCAAs are a great supplement to use, they not quite as complete in amino acids as protein is and for best results should be used in tandem with protein supplements. However, those in a calorie deficit may find BCAAs more macro-friendly.
Let’s be honest, you’re here because you’re inspired by one of fitness's greatest legends and you probably wouldn’t mind looking like him. The main point in this article is not CT Fletcher’s fully detailed workout plan.
However, every great diet and supplement stack is complemented by the perfect workout routine. If you need some CT Fletcher-stye lifting inspiration for the gym, here are some of the best lifts to focus on:
With all the various types of supplements available to you on the market, we can’t blame you for feeling a bit overwhelmed when it comes to formulating your own stack. CT Fletcher has a lot of credit in the field, so looking to his stack for inspiration is a great place to start.
CT Fletcher is an incredible athlete and an inspiration to us all. Striving to be like Fletcher is no easy task but a great goal nonetheless. Getting to Fletcher’s level of fitness takes knowledge of his methods in diet, exercise, and supplement intake.
Supplements are a great tool for fueling your body. Pair them with a great diet and killer mass-building program and you’ve got the perfect recipe for making massive gains, getting you on your way to getting ripped like Fletcher.