Some adolescent boys dream of becoming a body builder one day, but very few make it a reality. Most fail to deal with the routine of working out hard for the majority of the week while maintaining a strict diet.
Summit High School senior Kyle Day was able to overcome these challenges and accept the necessary sacrifices. Day recently competed in his first bodybuilding competition of his career and walked off with a first place finish at the Organization of Competition Bodies’ Arizona Scorcher bodybuilding competition in Phoenix on Saturday, June 18.
Day, who has lived in Summit County for his entire life, competed in the classic physique teen division, which allowed him to win his first bodybuilding title at the age of 16 years old.
For Day, his passion for bodybuilding and human physique began at an early age.
“I’ve been training — lifting weights — for a little over 3.5 years now,” Day said. “I remember watching ‘Pumping Iron’ with Arnonld Schwarzenegger when I was younger and looking at everything as a physique and its own art form. I wanted to do that.”
Day was so inspired by the men in the 1977 film that he started to do biceps curls at the age of 5 since he was eager to get a jump start on his own physique.
When Day turned 13 years old, he began seriously lifting, sometimes hitting the weights four to six days a week and attempting to shape his body into a body that mirrors Schwarzenegger’s.
Beyond bodybuilding, Day also enjoys powerlifting and cycling, which he routinely competes in when he is not training for another competition.
“I am a bit all over the place when it comes to exercise,” Day said. “It is fun.”
Day could be considered an expert in all three disciplines since he has competed in two powerlifting competitions and was the youngest finisher in the 2021 Triple Bypass and the Mt. Evans Hill Climb road bicycle races.
Despite regularly competing in three different sports, Day says he feels the most fulfillment from bodybuilding competitions.
“Bodybuilding is definitely where I feel the best,” Day said.
In the approach to the Arizona Scorcher competition, Day coached himself using the knowledge he has developed over the last few years to guide him to his desired physique.
Day says he mostly learned how to coach himself through trial and error and research. Day estimates that he has spent 1,000 hours researching common bodybuilding techniques in order to push himself to the best of his ability.
Unlike other bodybuilding categories, Day focused on building a well-rounded body physique that focuses on symmetry, balance and proportion. Instead of looking massive, the classic physique category is more geared towards those wanting to create a proportionate body type.
Despite the research and preparation, Day was still challenged in the hours leading up to his debut bodybuilding competition. He was really nervous for his first competition and the whole week leading up to the competition he was miserable, he said.
Day went without carbohydrates for a span of almost a week and only was drinking 10 to 12 fluid ounces a day leading up to the competition. In other words, Day’s body was screaming from the inside out for more sustenance.
This sacrifice and temporary pain was made worthwhile, however, once Day was on the stage showing off his hard work over the last few weeks.
“It was painful but it was probably one of the best pains I have ever felt,” Day said. “You see the results pretty much instantly.”
Walking across the stage with his first place award was when Day says he felt the most fulfilled by the competition. Day was awarded a first-place ax which he said he raised above his head in an act of celebration during the award ceremony.
“This sets me up beautifully for other competitions as well,” Day said. “I have my foot in the water already. I know how it feels. I know it isn’t going to be easy at all. I love the struggle of it.”
Day plans on spending the summer competing in three bike races before gearing up for future bodybuilding competitions during the late fall.