I've been training since I was 15 years old. This is in 1979.
No, it won't take you that long. Myself, many others before me, and everybody on the planet will have setbacks whether it's due to training injuries, bad nutrition programs, bad training.
It takes a long time to know your body and what your most effective way to train is. Some people hire trainers, some people do the trial and error method for years (me) many people ruin progress due to bad information, or keep listening to "well meaning" advice. The best advice I can ever give you is to listen to someone who looks like you want to look. Nobody has your answers unless they've done it themselves. You learn by doing what has already worked well for someone else. Listen to your own body because you will constantly change. No one can look at you and give you the "Golden Key", nor can they give you a magic pill or spell. What I'm telling you, is that you need to listen to yourself, be true to yourself and stop listening to everybody else.
I have competed since I was a teenager, winning the Teen Arizona three times, when I turned twenty I started in open competitions. I never did a novice, a natural, or any other "limiting" competition because I wanted to see how I did against everybody, not just a smaller pool of competitors. If you truly want to succeed, you are going to have to be willing to fall down a few times. Yes, it hurts when a lesser physique wins due to bad judging or your own mistakes, but you can always learn from these mistakes See yourself in photos or the mirror, and know what you need to focus on next. This is what continued success is all about and it took me almost twenty years to attain IFBB pro status.
Sure, there's shortcuts. Get a trainer, get a nutritionist, hire a pro bodybuilder and it will shave years off of hit and miss training. But in the end you have to learn and this is what success is all about. I learned by years of hit and miss workouts, and diets. Yes, it took me much longer. When I hired a few pro bodybuilders to talk about my diet and training, I was shocked at what I thought I knew. Turns out I kept banging my head against the wall not being able to turn pro and then finding out learning about nutrition is always continual. You have to keep on learning even if it means swallowing your pride a bit. My body was changing and I wasn't changing my diet to accomodate my needs. I thought I knew it all and I was wrong. As it turns out, you can never stop learning and you have to keep changing your training. When I did, I turned pro!
I have competed steadily over the years since I was a teenager and in 2004 at the NPC USA and got 2nd in the Super Heavy weights and just missed turning pro. I had turned 40 only 1 week prior and decided to enter the Masters Nationals the following weekend also as a Super Heavyweight, and I won the overall and turned PRO! So you can see...it was a long journey!
This is a cool photo from the "Olympia Wildcard" in Las Vegas. It was so packed it was easier to see us on the JumboTron!
RUSTY JEFFERS, FROM 15 TO 50!!
This is when my then girlfriend, now wife of 22 years, Francy and I won the Mr and Ms. Arizona Overall titles and the Mixed Pairs in 1989!
OK so I went a little wild for a while...Gotta have some fun with your bodybuilding, right?
Photo shoot with Brock Elliot here in Phoenix. Like the cap? "TRAIN BEYOND THE PAIN?? Go to my STORE PAGE and get YOURS!
Both above photos were from the Masters Nationals at 40 years old by my friend Socalphotographer who has taken most of my photos in the past several years. The picture at the left was a couple of years ago.
HERES MY MOST RECENT PHOTOS WHEN I WON THE PITTSBURGH PRO MASTERS 2014 AT AGE 50!
COMPETITIONS FROM BEGINNING TO END...
1981 Teen Arizona - Overall Winner
1982 Teen Arizona - Overall Winner
1983 Teen Arizona - Overall Winner
1987 AAU Copper Classic - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1987 AAU Mr. Tucson - 1st Place Heavyweight
1988 AAU Copper Classic - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1989 AAU Mr. Arizona - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1989 AAU Arizona Mixed Pairs - 1st Place Overall with Francy Jeffers
1990 NPC Orange County - 2nd Place Heavyweight
1991 NPC Palm Springs - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1991 AAU Grand Canyon - 3rd Place Heavyweight
1991 NPC Ironman - 5th Place Heavyweight
1992 AAU Southwest Open - 2nd Place Heavyweight
1992 NPC Ironman - 1st Place Heavyweight
1994 NPC Excalibur - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1995 NPC USA - 15th Place Heavyweight
1996 NPC Nationals 16th Place Heavyweight
1998 NPC USA - 9th Place Heavyweight
1999 NPC Los Angeles Championships - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1999 NPC NPC Arizona (had to "requalify") 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
1999 NPC USA 6th Place Heavyweight
2001 NPC Mid-USA - 1st Place Heavyweight & Overall Winner
2001 NPC USA - ?
2002 NPC USA - 10th Place Heavyweight
2002 NPC Nationals - 12th Place Heavyweight
2003 NPC San Diego World Gym Classic - 1st Place Superheavyweight & Overall Winner
2003 NPC Las Vegas Classic - 1st Place Superheavyweight Winner
2003 NPC Nationals - 16th Place Superheavyweight
2003 NPC Western Regional - 1st Place Superheavyweight Winner
2004 NPC USA - 2nd Place Superheavyweight
2004 NPC Masters Nationals - 1st Place Superheavyweight & Overall PRO CARD! ( I TURNED 40 I THINK A WEEK BEFORE THE SHOW)
2005 IFBB Iron Man Pro 12th Place
2005 IFBB San Francisco Pro - 16th Place
2005 IFBB Charlotte Pro - 12th Place
2006 IFBB Masters Pro World - 6th Place
2005 IFBB Mr. Olympia Wildcard Showdown 5th Place
2006 IFBB Masters Pro World Championships - 6th Place
2007 IFBB Ironman Pro - 12th Place
2007 IFBB Sacramento Grand Prix - 11th Place
2007 IFBB Sacramento Pro - 17th Place
2008 IFBB Atlantic City Pro - 11th Place
2009 IFBB Ironman Pro - 16th Place
2009 IFBB Australian Pro - 7th Place
2010 IFBB Australian Pro - 12th Place
2012 IFBB Flex Pro - 15th Place
2012 IFBB Desert Muscle Classic (212 Division!!! 4th Place (I did this 1week after the Flex Pro from 230lbs to 212 in 1 week! Just HAD to try to do it!
2014 IFBB Masters (1st Place!!) My first IFBB win and now I can say I RETIRED ON TOP!!!
WELL FOLKS, THAT'S 48 SHOWS...I THINK THAT'S ENOUGH!