Heritage Park Fitness owner Michael Allan Sheppard has been intensely training to prepare for the 2013 National Physique Committee USA Championships in Las Vegas.

He recently competed at the July 25-27 event, and placed 11th. Sheppard entered the competition in the Super Heavyweight class for those weighing more than 225.25 pounds.

“It was very hard, but last year I was 16th near the bottom, and this year I am 11th,” he said. “I put in a lot of work to make my physique better by bringing my legs and arms up, to polish my body. I will now get ready to do a deadlift only at the Europa and the from there the nationals in November.”

Sheppard was among hundreds of NPC national level competitors who traveled to Las Vegas in hopes of snagging the coveted International Federation of BodyBuilding and Fitness professional status.

“This competition is known as one of the toughest pro-qualifying competitions in the NPC,” he said.

“A record-breaking number of contenders came to this show, which made for an exciting show.”

Sheppard continues to receive support from staff and members of his gym in Harker Heights. He is working to add 5-10 pounds of muscle mass and compete in the national competition in Florida in 16 weeks.

The USA and national competitions are two of the most prestigious bodybuilding championships and have brought top athletes such as Flex Wheeler, Phil Heath and Chris Cormier to the forefront of the sport.

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