January RX Muscle Member of the Month: Guruhonza
Happy New Year! Welcome to 2014, Rx Muscle, and welcome to the first Member of the Month for the new year!
Guruhonza is a longtime and well respected Rx Muscle member who has played host and liaison to Dave Palumbo & Co. on more than one occasion. Let's learn more about the guru!
(Pictured above: Honza and IFBB Pro Clarence De Vis)
You have one of the best usernames. What’s the origin of Guruhonza?
Haha, Thank you! Good question. If I only knew that “guru” is such a popular word in bodybuilding I would never use it as my username. My name is Jan - John. But in Czech republic we also say Honza - Johnny. And guru word. One day in school we had a lesson about Hinduism and I was the only student who knew anything about it. I was able to describe several words and guru was one of them. Friend of mine started calling me guru after that lesson and I was left with that nickname. Probably a year later when I signed up for one online game I needed a cool nickname and I put my nickname and my name together. Guruhonza was born.
Do your friends call you Jan or Honza more frequently?
Honza. It’s sounds much better and Jan is almost too “formal”.
Where were you born and where do you currently call home?
I was born in Kutna Hora 22 years ago and I’ve lived here ever since. Kutna Hora is very old medieval mining town founded in 13th century (Gothic times). Kutna Hora or Kuttenberg is also part of Unesco and if anyone wants to visit Czech Republic Kutna Hora is definitely place to go. I spend most of the time in Brno (second biggest city in Czech Republic) where I study at Masaryk University.
I’ve tried Spanish, German, and French -- How many languages do you speak?
Other than Czech and Slovak language, which are very similar I can speak English, of course. I studied French for four years but teachers were not that good and I was able to learn only basics. I think I could understand what someone says but I could not talk to that person as well as I can in English.
How were you introduced to the sport?
It’s boring. Friend asked me one day if I want to go to gym with him and I said yes. I went there with no expectations. I was not even interested in building my physique. But right after I did my first set of bench press... I fell in love with lifting. So, yeah. Bodybuilding for me is mostly about my love of weights. That’s why I love those training videos of Kai, Evan or Jose Raymond. As for the sport of bodybuilding, when I do something I want to do it as well as I can. I read about it, I try new things and I am looking for progress and self-improvement. In bodybuilding it means searching for websites where you can learn everything you Google. And those sites often offer results from bodybuilding competitions and pics from that show. That was my introduction. I saw some pics leading up to 2009 Arnold Classic and I knew that I wanted to follow that contest. I wanted to know who wins it.
How did you discover Rx Muscle?
I wanted to follow that 2009 Arnold Classic. I Googled “arnold classic webcast” and Rx Muscle was right there. I signed up. Logged in. Found play-by-play. Made my first posts and I guess that’s the beginning. I’m glad I can be part of its great community. Members like RichDC2 are worth following because of inspiration you get just by reading their journal.
And what is your favorite part of the iron game – strongman, bodybuilding, Men’s Physique, Bikini, etc.?
Dave Pulcinella loves Bikini and I understand why. Those women are like the hottest thing living. But it’s not iron game. It’s beauty contest that spikes ours male hormones.
I always followed strongman, powerlifting, weightlifting and bodybuilding but bodybuilding is my favorite part. It goes beyond everything. It’s something so hard, painful and demanding that only 0,1% can do it. I admire that. It makes me follow it and think about my life in a way that I always have to do my best in everything I do. Because if I fail it’s on me.
Do you train at a gym on campus or in town?
I actually tried working out at a gym on campus, but I can train there only arms and hamstrings. There’re shitty machines and dumbbells up to 88lbs. No squat rack or power rack. I train in several gyms in town. I switch it up every 3 months or so.
You’ve played host and Rx Muscle liaison on more than one occasion. What has been the most fun you’ve had during these events?
I think watching people just as passionate about bodybuilding as I am. Dave, Aaron, Roman Fritz, Chris Aceto... Bodybuilding is the most interesting sport behind the scenes and that’s what I enjoy the most. Last year I had an opportunity to attend FIBO and be part of something creative. It was also my first experience with a really huge expo and it was so much fun. Everyone who has that memory of their first expo knows how cool it is.
What are some of your favorite memories of FIBO?
When I start from the beginning it’s gonna be my first experience with Expo. It was Thursday at 1 p.m. and there was no need for athletes to be there. Well, guess what? Victor Martinez was there all day! I was so impressed with that.
I've witnessed Victor do the same at the NPC Maryland. He's been there talking with fans as they stack chairs and close the building down after the show.
I was able to meet people I talk to regularly on boards. Eric from Universal allowed me to train with him and G Diesel in a local gym - Muscle Gym. Universal team was there, too! It was so inspiring to me. And a few minutes after we arrived Roman Fritz brought Dave to the gym, too. It was so much fun. I had a friend with me and he was able to do a cool video.
I also filmed Roman’s posing and everyone in the gym was really impressed. It was my idea to shoot the video and it got really popular. Almost 25,000 views for an amateur bodybuilder.
And all my dreams about real girls were crushed by those fitness chicks at the Expo. I’m so glad I was able to control myself. lol Nice!
What is your goal so far as the weights go?
I want to achieve a physique I can be proud of. I realized that being “fat/off-season” bulking bodybuilder is not for me. I can look in the mirror only if I’m lean. This means a few years of lean bulking and eventually getting on a level with physique guys. But with crazy quads. I am a huge fan of bodybuilders with freaky striated quads and I want that too. My focus is also on strength movements. I am not sure how strong I can get one day but it feels damn good to be the strongest guy in the gym. That’s usually the case with me. I lift the biggest weight if our strongmen are not there too. That’s also kind of weird because it has not been 5 years since I started lifting. People here do not focus on nutrition and their training usually sucks. It’s not hard to be above average after 18 months of solid training.
Would you share your greatest success in the sport so far?
I hate those questions. I hate when people tell me that I am “good” at something. I am a cocky person, but I don’t brag. I did interviews with pro bodybuilders or top amateurs. But almost anyone can do that. You just have to try. I’m not sure what would be considered the greatest success. For me it’s about improving myself every day. Thanks to bodybuilding I have the discipline to work harder, do more things, learn new things and be better every day. Friend of mine told me today that I am weird because I’m not materialistic. And that’s why I probably won’t be able to answer this question.
What I am proud of? I helped maybe 10 people with something that helped them. Article in published magazine, training video for big website or helping with sponsorship deal. And I interviewed probably 20 people and gave them exposure on a websites I write for.
Can you tell more of the work you do on behalf of your fellow athletes? You just mentioned getting an article published in a magazine and a training video. Were you author and videographer or did you coordinate the article and video, connecting the athletes with the creative teams?
I basically talk to who is responsible for the magazine/website I want the athlete to be published at. If it’s an article I write it myself and it’s usually copy+paste into magazine. So I can actually say that my text is several times in MD magazine.
If it’s video for any website I talk to “video guy” of that website if they are interested in publishing video of that athlete. It’s an exposure for the athlete and views for the website. Because I help European athletes they usually have to find someone who shoots the video. But it was never problem.
What has been one of your greatest disappointments?
I do not think of something as disappointment. For me it’s just another part of this world. Bodybuilding is not a fair sport and maybe that’s disappointing. There are judges, sponsors, genetics, drugs, science, money… and hard work. And something you can try so hard and it doesn’t have to be enough. And if it’s enough there are still people who will put you down because of something they are jealous of. In this sport it’s really hard to be happy. To have a really happy life and be able to spend quality time with your family.
Can you tell us about your family? Do you have brothers and sisters? Do you get home very often or is Masaryk University far from home?
My family is basically my mother, my brother and mother’s half of the family. My parents are divorced and I don’t talk to my father. He’s exacty what I do not like about people.
I come home every one or two weeks. It depends on my school schedule. I go home by train and it takes 3 hours to get from Brno to Kutna Hora.
I have always trouble eating healthy when I’m home because my mother makes the best food. Or should I say pastry. I know RichDC2 spend summer in Poland and he loved European pastry! I have to resist every week. You can imagine how hard it is to get in single digit bodyfat!
I believe you! :-)
What’s your favorite part of Rx Muscle?
Muscle Central. I am bodybuilding fan and you get bodybuilding news at Muscle Central and there’re always so many people with different opinions. I like that.
I spend my time in the journal section too. Top 3 journals belong to these 3 members: RichDC2, Dadup and D-NUTZ.
And radio shows too! I listen to most of Rx Muscle radio shows. It’s such a useful thing. I can listen to them on my iPhone on the bus, at the supermarket or when I wait for my class in school.
Big shout out to Bryan Hildebrand and Mike Johnston. RX Power Hour is my Rx Muscle radio show of the year!
I've seen you post on Rx Muscle Forums about UFC. What do you say was the best fight ever?
You expect me to remember that? Okay, it’s not hard for me. UFC 139: Shogun vs. Henderson. Five round war with so many moments where one fighter could finish his opponent. This is actually the only fight I ever watched twice.
What would you do to improve the site and Rx Muscle Forums in particular?
Gosh. I have no idea. Maybe having a top national judge (anonymous) who would discuss results of every contest and give people his honest assessment. Sometimes results are kind of weird (Charles Dixon in 2012, Kevin English winning NY Pro 2012 or placing well this year at Mr. Olympia) and people deserve to know if it’s based on something or if it’s just politics.
I also think RxMuscle would benefit from article contests. It’s such a great way to get new writers. Great articles = traffic. And you never know if there’s someone who can write such good articles that Dave would have him as a paid writer for the website.
Recently, in the one thread started by Tammy Patnode, I saw your post about social media. You’re on IG, Twitter, Facebook and more. Which do you prefer and why?
Facebook. The best navigation, history and people know how to use it correctly. It saves a lot of my time and money because I can talk to people for free and online.
Who have you met who has exceeded your expectations?
I learned not to expect anything from people.
Almost everyone in this sport is also huge fan. Athletes appreciate when you talk to them because without fans they would not make a living out of their passion. They remember the day when they visited their first expo and talked to their hero. This is what I like. It’s fun. If you want me to tell you one person who surprised me it’s Rich Piana. He’s such a cool dude! He talks to everybody about everything and takes time. I think he’s really smart, too. And I’ve never seen bigger arms!
And a big shout out to Eric Schwartz from Universal Nutrition. That guy and company he represents are so good for the sport.
Has there been anyone you’ve met who was, like, “Wow. Really?” Not asking you to call anyone out, but – without naming names – what did they do that was surprising?
I could say names but I don’t want to cause anything bad. I think there’s enough negative people and I don’t want to be one of them. But to give you an answer, I was not allowed a press pass for a contest this year because I wrote on the internet my opinion on who should have won in another competition. One thing led to another and I was without a press pass. Same problem had several people I talk to regularly.
Who is someone you look forward to meeting and perhaps picking their brain? Someone you’d love to learn from as a mentor or just an interesting person to have a beer with?
I don’t drink, Curt. I could probably have whey hydro shake with that person, though.
There is one bodybuilder left I always wanted to talk to in person but he seems to be everywhere where I am not. And it’s not that hard for him. It’s Jose Raymond. I talked to Evan last year at FIBO and it was really cool conversation. I think talking to Jose would be similar.
What top 3 questions would you ask Jose Raymond?
I have no idea. I never think of any questions before I meet the athlete. But I think it wouldn't be anything bodybuilding related if I had only 3 questions.
As far as picking their brain. Everyone. I am huge fan of term “guru” and people like Chris Aceto, Dave Palumbo, Chad Nicholls or Oscar Ardon would teach me a lot. I learned now I am also very interested in Matt Porter’s work because his results with clients make him the best prep coach in the business.
What do you do for a living? Are you a full-student, entrepreneur, trainer, or an actual guru, Honza?
I am a student. I study at Masaryk University - Faculty of Sport studies.
“Faculty of Sport studies” is your area of concentration at university?
It’s the only university I am able to study and stay healthy mentally. People around me would love me at Law school or some kind of economy based university but I am all about doing only things I love doing.
When will you graduate?
Hopefully in 18 months.
And what's your ultimate career goal?
I have no career goal. I just want to live happy and healthy life with many options and opportunities. I believe I can create opportunities for myself. Ultimately, I’d love to make my money exactly how I do it right now. Write online articles, work between Czech - English language and help athletes however I can. I can help with their prep or be their manager. After graduation I’ll be definitely qualified to do that. I think I helped a few people and I want to keep doing it. I always liked the idea of doing several smaller things and keeping my mind challenged all the time. And if there’s one big future - good for me. If there’s not a big future I can handle it too. I can take care of myself right now.
I am making money by writing online articles about bodybuilding, powerlifting and strongmen. It gives me enough money for food, accommodation and doing things I love.
I am writing for two websites and I’m about to start writing for a third website which will be only bodybuilding articles and I’m very excited about that.
When there’s an opportunity I translate texts from English to Czech.
What websites do you write for? Three sites? That’s very impressive!
I am writing for www.osvalech.cz which is website focused on strongman, powerlifting, training, nutrition and supplements. I cover strongman competitions and important Czech bodybuilding shows. My favorite part is interviews with athletes. I do them via e-mail most of the time but I did some on video too. I was so nervous!
New website is www.aktin.cz it’s a website focused on bodybuilding, natty bodybuilding, fitness and MMA. I’ll start by the end of 2013 and my job should be bodybuilding news and interviews. Finally! =)
Third website I cannot share at this moment.
Who is one hero or mentor you’ve learned from?
When I started lifting I always asked one friend for advices. His name is Jirka. He helped me with training always for something specific and importance of the nutrition. He is no coach but his knowledge is great.
In general I try to learn from everything I experience or everyone I meet.
Is your friend and mentor Jirka a fellow student or someone from the gym, bodybuilding websites or elsewhere?
I knew him from sports camp but he also studied at the same Gymnasium (comprehensive school). He was strongest dude in a school gym and knew several bodybuilders and almost all strongmen in Czech Republic. He is only two years older than me but he was lifting weights since 13 years old. I started when I was 18.
What supplement company or brand does it right?
I’ve been using products from one company for the last 2 years. It’s called Smartlabs. It’s a Czech company and they have only supplements that have some science behind them. No BS pre-workout formulas and so on. Only proteins, creatine and amino acid products like Leucine, BCAA and so on.
But if you ask me about U.S. companies I am huge fan of Universal Nutrition. I think they are the coolest fan friendly bodybuilding supplement company out there. Their athletes are good human beings and what they do for the sport is amazing. And I have a crush on Callie Bundy.
I think she is absolutely adorable. I hope they take her to FIBO with them. I would probably spend so much time looking at her.
Thank you, Guruhonza for letting Rx Muscle learn more about you! I wish you success and have no doubt -- given your determination and persistence -- that you'll achieve just that.