IFBB Pro. Wheelchair Bodybuilder Neil Picone making his pro debut

The path to my bodybuilding career started back in October 2007 when I was paralyzed. I was
competing in a motorcycle track event when something broke on my motorcycle and I lost control
hitting a concrete wall. I sustained 2 broken vertebrae in my neck, 6 broken ribs, and 3 shattered
vertebrae in my lower back. The injuries to my lower are what left me paralyzed from the waist down.

From that day forward I battled to get back to a normal way of life. Months in the hospital, rehabs,
and life adjustments were all a struggle. I am a very competitive person and never had let anything
stop me in the past, and I was not going to let this accident define the rest of my life. While on bed
rest I constantly searched for ways to get back that competitive edge that makes up a large part of my
personality. I finally came across wheelchair bodybuilding, and was instantly inspired by the guys that
competed. It gave me a new outlook and motivated me to get back into the gym and do something

Less than a year (2008) after my accident I was back in the gym and began a basis weekly routine.
Throughout the next two years this routine expanded, and my training became more disciplined
and intense. In 2011, I finally got on stage at the Texas CTS and performed well there. However, the
National Title was always my goal from day one.

With the help from my coach (Steve Ioannou), Team Provo, Greg Peterson (Trainer), and Diamond Gym;
my prep was hardcore, and physically/mentally draining. I busted my butt to bring the best package to
the National stage in West Palm Beach, FL. Winning this show and becoming an IFBB Pro Athlete was a
4 year goal of mine. I had tried to get to Nationals in 2010 and 2011 but never made it due to injuries
and surgery. Winning this past March made it all the struggles in the resent past worth it. To this day
sometimes I still can't believe this dream of mine has become reality.

Now it's time to perform on the professional stage. The IFBB Pro Wheelchair Championships are only
weeks away, and I could not be more driven then I am at this moment. I think I can speak for all the
wheelchair athletes by saying we all want this sport to continue to grow. Showtime, October 13th is
right around the corner. It's time for all the short and long term goals to be tested. Accomplishing
personal goals are more important than winning no matter how you look at the big picture. I honestly
can say that I couldn't happier with the progress I have in and out of the sport of bodybuilding.

I don't look at this accident as the worst day of my life. It was the start of my life. I've learned so much
since that tragic day, and now do more to help others than I ever have. I work closely with a non-profit to help
athletes like me, and constantly give to charities. I'm regularly reminding myself that it could have been
a lot worse. People harp too much on their short coming instead of finding ways to improve them. All
the wheelchair athletes are perfect examples of overcoming the odds, and attacking adversity head on.
This is what I love about the sport; just doing the unthinkable.

I hope others gain the motivation that I have through bodybuilding. If anything becomes of my career in
the sport, I hope that others see that life never stops and to keep pushing towards their goals.

I hope this short bio helps to inform you a little about my situation. It would be great to have the
opportunity to inform the public about the importance of overcoming a tough situation. I'm looking
forward to hear back you guys in the near future. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or
if you're looking for more info.


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Neil Picone Ifbb Pro 
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