Wills Falade: Grow through what you go through

At Reflex, we value mental health just as much as physical health. Science tells us that exercise and mental health are intertwined and we believe that making quality sports nutrition isn’t just about enhancing body condition, strength and fitness but also about helping reach goals, enhancing wellbeing and ultimately making people feel good 

We've reached out to Reflex Ambassador Williams Falade, for a quick Q&A around his experience with professional body building and how it impacted his physical and mental health.  

Hi Wills, thanks for chatting with us. So, tell us about your bodybuilding background, when did you start and how did you get into it?

I started working in a gym, I kept seeing people around me that looked really good. I wanted to know how they did it, how they looked so good? So, I started asking people in the gym some questions. They told me they compete and that was the end of that! I wanted to try a bodybuilding show myself to see if I could get my body looking like that as well.

Sounds amazing! So tell us about your competitions? What's your most memorable one for example? 

Okay, so the first one would probably be the first worlds I did, I had just become a pro about 6 months prior to that. I just had in my mind that I was going to become the next world champion, so literally the next worlds I was there - I didn't even wait! 😂

It was a good and a bad experience for me, in my head I strongly believed that I went there as a winner. But I ended up coming back with second place, which was kind of daunting for me - I managed to knock the world champion out of his place, but I didn’t get the title that I wanted. So, yeah mixed feelings there when it comes to my first worlds.

So physically that sounds very challenging, how did it impact you mentally?

It definitely changed my mindset, in regards to how, it wasn’t an 'infection' but in some ways it was more of a cure. At the time I had started to compete I had a lot of things going on in my life so competing just gave me something to focus on other than what was happening in my life...

Okay, as a follow on to that when you’re in competition mode, how else does it impact your life? Work/life balance? Socialising? 

It stops all of that - just puts me down this single path, all the troubles of the world seem to be second hand when you're doing a show. Your main focus is on the show and how you're going to look for the show.

It sounds quite selfish but yeah, lots of people do this as it helps them to get out of that mental state that they are in, if they are in a really bad place prepping can really help to give you a focus and forget about everything else. 

Focus on something that is actually good for you! 

And, how does it feel when you win?

When I win now? It just feels normal. But when I first won it felt like a relief! The reason being I always knew I was a winner, I always knew I was a champion. Every time I competed I was one of those guys who always thought he was getting cheated! So you know, I didn’t actually celebrate when they said first place - I just thought... finally guys you’ve finally realised 😂

Ok, so on the other side of the coin, how does it feel when you lose?

Disappointment. I've tried to give up a lot of times. The people around me told me that giving up is for a loser’s game, I strongly feel like the losses made me stronger because it allowed me to come back, and made me look for that unturned stone as they say. I feel like I eventually upturned all my stones, so my losses were bad at the time, but I feel like they were definitely a big help to me.

What is it like after the competition?

After the competition, I like to think that I am different than people because I still carry on with the competition lifestyle because I'm used to it. It's very easy to just cut it off as soon as they finish a competition, go back to the world of living - eating what you want, doing what you want, I am not like that. I continue for at least 6/7 months on the plan I am doing at the time of my show! 

Champion mentally right there! If anything, what would you do differently?

If I could do anything differently... Good question I don't think there is anything I would do differently, I'm one of those believers that not everything happens for a reason but you grow through what you go through, so the more I go through the more I grow ♥

If you did a different profession?

If I did a different profession? It's very hard to say, because before I went into fitness, I always wanted to go into acting and I think I would’ve done great in that as well 😉

What advice would you give to someone young starting out? 

If you're young and you're just starting out... don’t rush it. You have plenty of years to perfect yourself, when you tend to rush it you do things that harm your body or your mental state.

So I would say take each day as it comes, Rome wasn't built in a day, neither will you be. So, go for competitions that are realistic - don’t go for the world competition where everyone has been training for 25 years as you could be disappointed. 

If you found this useful connect with Wills - @williams.falade