With any physical activity, there is a level of dedication needed in pursuit of success. The chase for that euphoric moment when a goal has been attained, can be considered the ultimate high for any athlete. Success and winning are the ultimate achievements to all the hard work done towards that end goal. This could not be truer for Staten Islander Mike Giliotti; master trainer and owner of Intoxx Fitness in Oakwood. Now, after placing several times, Mike has won the prestigious IFBB Pro Card in the Men’s Body Building Over 35 Middle Weight Division, a title that is in the top league for this sport. BELLA NYC sat down with Mike to discuss his weighty victory.
Mike, congratulations on your victory! I know this title has been long coming, to begin, tell us what attracted you to the fitness industry and ultimately participating in these competitions?
The fitness industry I started when I was 15 years old, and that’s going back 20 years. It’s something that as a child I grew up loving. When sports didn’t work out in high school and college I kind of just gravitated towards the gym to work on myself and I never looked back. As far as competitions go it just forces you to break out of your comfort zone and brings your level of discipline as high as possible, taking you places you never thought were possible.
Who is your Inspiration?
I guess from a body standpoint it was always Arnold Schwarzenegger because that was the generation I grew up in. But from a standpoint of idol I wouldn’t say I have any one specific that jumps out. Probably all the top movie guys.
Considering the number of times you have entered the Men’s Body Building competition, how do you maintain your drive to succeed?
This sport involves a subjective panel of judges. There is no specific action that is done that ultimately causes you to win. You’re getting judged on what they like that particular day. There where definitely times when the process was frustrating, but throughout my career I have learned that I have to focus on being my best self and hope the judges agree with me. I did get defeats in the process, but this is something I truly have a love and passion for and defeat never steered me away from competing.
Mike, what is the best advice you have ever received?
I would have to say that more that anyone giving me good advice, it would just be my faith. That’s really helped me in terms of staying grounded and realizing that everything has a purpose, and even though today may not have been a good day, if you continue to work for something it will all work out in the end. Having faith has helped me tremendously.
Entering these competitions must certainly affect your self-esteem, so how does it feel to have won?
The sense of achievement is gratifying. The amount of discipline, consistency and effort, you can really look back on and see what you have accomplished. For contest prep it usually takes between a three and four month period to prepare. In that time you really have to dedicate your whole life to this one day. This one day only consists of ten to fifteen minutes, so this is something that you really have to want and throughout the whole process you really can’t let off the gas once, since it’s just a constant state of focus and pushing. It’s great.
Lastly, how do you define beauty?
Physical beauty is something I am connected to from an aspect of what I do, but I do believe in everyone being their best self no matter how they interpret that. People should strive to be their best. Internal beauty is just as important and the person you become, the person you are, can truly shine through any physical aspect. It really is how you present yourself as a whole.
By Lesley Santillan