From playing soccer in high school to becoming a professional bodybuilder, Shawn Rhoden was an icon in the bodybuilding industry. The IFBB Pro had numerous competitions under his belt and inspired many athletes.
Shawn Rhoden was born in Kingston, Jamaica. He was very athletic growing up, playing soccer and cricket whenever he had the chance.
However, he was small for his age and became unhappy with his physique. Shawn and his family moved to the US in 1990, and it was there that he found his passion for bodybuilding.
Shawn “The Flexatron” Rhoden was born in Jamaica but immigrated to the United States in 1990 when he was 15. While struggling to adapt to his new country, he found an outlet for self-expression in soccer and aspired to be a professional athlete.
In 1992, his cousin introduced him to bodybuilding, which he initially disliked for being “too painful.” However, as his athletic abilities developed, so did his passionate desire to push himself to his limits.
In 1992, he decided to give up soccer and pursue bodybuilding professionally. Although Shawn’s journey to IFBB stardom was difficult, he never let setbacks deter him.
In 2002, his career was put on pause when he sustained a severe tendon injury in his hand. Doctors told him he could never grip it again, let alone lift several hundred pounds.
On top of this devastating news, Shawn’s father, his biggest fan, passed away later that year, leading him to succumb to alcoholism and step away from the NPC stage.
Despite facing these demons, Shawn managed to overcome his struggles. In 2009, he returned to the NPC and earned his pro status after winning the Delaware Open.
Later that year, he made his professional debut at the IFBB North American Championships, where he placed 1st. After a seven-year break, Shawn placed 2nd at the 2016 Mr. Olympia, showcasing his determination and resilience as an older bodybuilder.
He continued to be an active bodybuilder with the ambition to one day win the prestigious Mr. Olympia title, always keeping his motto “Dream to Believe!” close to his heart.
Shawn’s bodybuilding journey began at age 21 when he entered his first competition, the 1996 National Eastern Classic in New Jersey. With the expert guidance of Yohhnie Shambouger, he walked away with the trophy. Unfortunately, the same year, he suffered a back injury, which forced him to take a six-month break from training.
However, Shawn didn’t let setbacks keep him down for long. After recovering from his back injury, he made a strong comeback by entering the 1997 Mid-Atlantic National Bodybuilding Championship.
His perseverance paid off as he secured the Posers Award for stage performance and placed 2nd in the Overall category. In 2010, Shawn appeared in his first professional contest, the IFBB Dallas Europa Super Show, where he faced tough competition and placed 16th.
Undeterred, he returned to the same stage in 2011, demonstrating significant improvement and securing an impressive 3rd place. This achievement qualified him for the prestigious Mr. Olympia contest.
Shawn’s success continued to grow in the Mr. Olympia competition. From 2012-2016, he consistently placed in high-profile matches, including 3rd places in the 2014 and 2015 Mr. Olympia.
At 41, in 2016, Shawn achieved his most significant accomplishment yet, finishing 2nd place in a fiercely contested Mr. Olympia.
On Saturday, November 6, 2021, Shawn Rhoden passed away at 46 due to a heart attack. At the time of writing, an official announcement on his death had not yet been made, but his trainer, Chris Aceto, reportedly confirmed the news to close friends.
Shawn Rhoden leaves a legacy as an inspirational figure in bodybuilding, remembered for his dedication, resilience, and passion for the sport.
Shawn Rhoden Diet and Nutrition Plan
Regarding his diet and nutrition plan, Shawn Rhoden followed a strict regimen during competitions to maintain his impressive physique and present a complete package on stage.
However, during the off-season, he took a different approach, allowing himself to bulk up without meticulously tracking his calorie intake.
Lean proteins were a staple of Shawn’s diet, supporting muscle development and recovery. He likely included sources such as chicken breast, turkey, lean cuts of beef, fish, and egg whites. These protein sources provide the necessary amino acids for muscle synthesis and repair.
Shawn incorporated healthy fats into his meals to meet his daily energy needs and maintain overall health. These fats may have come from avocados, nuts, seeds, and olive oil.
Healthy fats provide essential fatty acids, promote hormonal balance, and aid in absorbing fat-soluble vitamins. Shawn structured his meals around six servings daily, ensuring a balanced combination of lean proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates.
These components provide the necessary nutrients for muscle growth, repair, and sustained energy.
Shawn Rhoden Meal Plan
Shawn Rhoden followed a structured meal plan to support his bodybuilding goals during his prime time.
Shawn Rhoden Meal 1
- Oatmeal 2 cup
- Egg whites 12
- Whole eggs 3
Shawn Rhoden Meal 2
- Grilled chicken breast 250 g
- Brown rice 200 g
- Assorted vegetables 200 g
Shawn Rhoden Meal 3
- Lean steak 250 g
- Baked potatoes 120 g
Shawn Rhoden Meal 4
- Lean ground beef 200 g
- Brown rice 150 g
- Assorted vegetables
Shawn Rhoden Meal 5
- Grilled chicken breast 200 g
- Assorted vegetables
Shawn Rhoden Meal 6
- Protein shake
- Peanut butter
Shawn Rhoden Workout Routine
Shawn Rhoden followed a structured workout routine to sculpt his physique and build muscle mass.
It’s important to note that proper hydration, warm-up exercises, and cooling down by stretching were essential components of his training to prevent injuries and ensure a safe workout session.
Monday: Chest Workout
|Incline Barbell Bench Press||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Incline Dumbbell Bench Press||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Shrug Machine Bench Press (Lying on the Floor)||–|
|Dumbbell Chest Fly (Lying on the Floor)||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Hammer Strength Bench Press||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
Tuesday: Leg Workout
|Seated Leg Extension||3 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Cambered Bar Squat||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Leg Press||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Single-Leg Leg Press||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Hack Squat||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Hip Adduction Machine||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
Wednesday: Shoulder Workout
|Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Seated Barbell Overhead Press||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Reverse Dumbbell Fly||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Barbell Delt Raise||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Standing Machine Shrug||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
|Dumbbell Front Lift||5 Sets, 8-12 Reps|
Thursday: Arm Workout
|Seated Alternating Dumbbell Curl||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Cable Triceps Pushdown||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Incline EZ-Bar Skullcrusher||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Single-Arm Machine Preacher Curl||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|EZ-Bar Forearm Curl||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
Friday: Back Workout
|Bent-Over Barbell Row||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Incline Machine Row||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Close Grip Cable Pulldown||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|T-Bar Row||4 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Wide Grip Machine Pulldown||5 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
|Close Grip Seated Cable Row||5 Sets, 10-15 Reps|
Saturday and Sunday: Rest
- Rest and Recovery