2007-Present Doctoral Student in Division
of Nutritional Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana,
2006-07 M.S. Kinesiology
(Sport Psychology-Motor Learning) (Thesis: "The Non
emergence of an
Especial Skill: Good Is Not Good Enough"). CSU Eastbay, CA
2006 CSCS, NSCA
B.S. (honors, deans list) Kinesiology (concentration:
Exercise Nutrition & Wellness).
California State University (CSU) Eastbay, CA
Wilson is the Co-founder and Vice President of Abcbodybuilding.com.
He also is a researcher in the Division of Nutritional
Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois, where he
is completing his PhD in Nutrition with an emphasis on
optimal protein requirements for muscle growth.
Gabriel has an unparalleled dedication to the sport of
bodybuilding, and has devoted the majority of his life to
helping thousands of bodybuilders reach their goals. His
academic achievements are vast, and include degrees in
Kinesiology, numerous publications,
and extensive experience public speaking.
What makes Gabriels’ research so unique is that he has
successfully bridged the gap between science and the sport
of bodybuilding. Indeed, when Gabriel Co-founded this site,
he saw a chasm between bodybuilders – who relied heavily on
experience and anecdotal evidence – and scientists, who
relied purely on laboratory research. Therefore, he engaged
on a personal mission to apply everything he learned in the
lab, directly to his training in the gym; and likewise,
everything he has learned in the gym, he applies directly to
his research in the lab. It is this combination of science
and application that makes the recommendations given on this
site so unique and effective.
with Gabriel Wilson
Who do you admire most as a bodybuilder?
My favorite all time physique is Kevin Levrone. I think he
had the complete package - his delts especially were
amazing. Arnold is a huge inspiration to me as well.
On the natural
bodybuilding front, I greatly respect Layne Norton. He has
done tremendous things for this sport, and has taken a very
similar approach to us, continually striving to bridge the
gap between science and bodybuilding.
Who do you admire most as a scientist(s)
There are so
many great scientists I respect. I'll try to break this down
By far I'd
have to say Jacob is the most talented scientists I have
ever known. Before it's all said and done, he will be one of
the all time greats. He has the ability to completely
dominate academic settings like no one else I have ever
As far as
fellow bodybuilding scientists, Layne Norton again is
someone I have a lot of respect for. From a nutrition
perspective, my mentors Dr. Peter Garlick and Donald Layman
are absolutely amazing - they are living gods in protein
research. I have always had tremendous respect for Dr.
William Kraemer. The research he has done on periodization and
strength training are absolutely spot on, and I'm a big advocate of a
lot of his techniques. In Sport Psychology, I have a lot of
admiration for my mentor Dr. Penny McCullagh. My favorite
sport psychologists are Ed Deci and Richard Ryan; they
invented self determination theory, which in my opinion is
the number one theory on intrinsic motivation. I spent the
majority of my masters program researching their theory and
quite honestly, nothing has had a bigger impact on my life
than this theory. You can read some of my articles by
plenty more I can name, but let's continue with the
What advice would you give to up and coming bodybuilders?
Wow, this is a
difficult one. I guess what I would say to them is that if
you want to succeed in bodybuilding, then you must treat it
like any other occupation you want to be successful in.
Research by Anders Ericsson and Colleagues suggest that it
takes 10 years, or 10,000 hours of correct practice
to become an expert. That's a lot of time. The point is, if
you expect to get huge and shredded overnight, you are in
for a rude awakening. As with any other occupation, it is
going to take years and years of training before your reach
which I wholly agree with is this: bodybuilding is not just
a sport, it's a lifestyle. And the point of this saying is
that if you are trying to find short cuts, then you won't
make it. You must embrace the bodybuilding lifestyle and
make it apart of who you are.
And this goes
back to my research on intrinsic motivation. There is no way
you are going to be able to have the longevity required to
succeed in this sport without loving what you do. I mean you
can, and I have seen people do it, but it is so much harder.
The best rout to go is to actually enjoy everything about it
- training, and even dieting! There is a saying by Arnold
that many people may find quite disturbing, but it depicts
my point exactly:
a fantastic feeling to gain size from pain. All of a
sudden I was looking forward to it as something
pleasurable. The whole idea of pain became a pleasure
trip. I couldn’t tell anybody about it then, because I
knew they would say I was weird. Which wasn’t true, I
had just converted the pain into pleasure - not for its
own sake but because it meant growing. We bragged to
each other about how much our workouts hurt. --- Arnold
I was about to
type 5 paragraphs explaining this from a psychological
perspective lol, but I think my point has been made.
suggestion for now: feedback and social support. Trial and
error learning is a slow and painful process; and social
support is a key component to success in this sport. Luckily
for you, both are provided in endless supply here on
Abcbodybuilding.com. I encourage you to delve into our
articles and ask as many questions as you can in our online
forum. It might take some time and effort, but it will save
you countless hours in the long run. I also advise
interacting with the
ABC Community for social support.
What is the best all around supplement?
amino acid supplements by far. They have completely changed
What advice would you give to someone pursuing an academic
career dedicated to the study of muscle?
Kinesiology is the best rout to go to start your education.
This will allow you to experience courses from all fields of
human movement including nutrition, psychology, physical
therapy, and biomechanics. From here, you can then narrow
your studies into areas that interested you the most.
I also find
that people who get degrees in one field like psychology,
often miss the big picture. You have to look at the body
from a holistic perspective to come to proper conclusions -
this means you must have some understanding of the
physiology, chemistry, and biomechanics of the body - not
just about the mind or the respiratory system. This is
because the body works in sync - nothing is separate.
another reason why the recommendations on this site are so
unique and successful - Jacob and I have a very broad
academic background, and always try to analyze the body
using all fields of research.
Who had the greatest influence on your career?
Jacob and my
parents - the support they have given me can not be
described here in a few short sentences. Absolutely, I would
not be where I am today without their generosity. I'd also
like to give a special thanks to my alma matter CSUEB
University. The teachers there were absolutely phenomenal.
has blessed me with tremendous opportunities - he
clearly has a great plan for my life. I just try to do the
best I can to take advantage of these opportunities and be an
ambassador to Christ in all my actions, hoping that my
behaviors will reflect him.
the other interests in your life?
hanging out with friends and colleagues for social
events. While I have many other interests, it's pretty much
impossible to get into them with my life style. Most people
would be completely overwhelmed by a PhD program as I am
involved in. Add on top of that being an entrepreneur,
co-owner of a company, and two a days in the gym, and that
leaves little time for anything else. But you know what? I
love what I do. I love training, I love my research in lab,
and I love all of our family here on ABC. And that's why
I've been able to run this company now for almost a decade -
I am intrinsically motivated. And God willing, I plan on
changing the face of bodybuilding for another 10 years.
questions? No? Then what are you waiting for - go do some
Protein Metabolism – My current research centers around the
optimal dosage, frequency, and type of proteins to consume
in relation to body composition and performance, in healthy
sedentary and trained populations across age spans.
Body composition and human performance – my overall
interests focus on the effects of diet, training, and
supplementation on body composition (particularly
hypertrophy and fat metabolism) and strength. I am also
interested in human performance, and the effects of
implementing motor learning and behavioral principles on
Intrinsic Motivation – I am absolutely fascinated with
topics related to maximizing intrinsic motivation of the
human being. I have done extensive research on self
determination theory and its sub theory, cognitive
evaluation theory, and believe it is currently the most
accurate theory on human motivation. I have also done
extensive research on many other topics related to intrinsic
motivation including cooperation and competition, goal
setting, administering external rewards, and many others.
Research in Progress
I am currently
optimal protein intakes to maximize skeletal muscle growth.
Our lab believes leucine is the key signaling molecule for
stimulating skeletal muscle protein synthesis; therefore, we
are investigating the efficacy of using leucine as a
determinant of protein quality.
Ostarello, J.Z., J.M., Wilson, and G.J., Wilson.
(2005) Muscle power enhances brain power: A paradigm for
success in kinesiology. Western Society Review.
Simons, J, Wilson, G.J, Theall, S. & Rodriquez, W. A Test of
Parameterization Changes as Possible Explanations for
the Especial Skills Phenomenon
at the 60.5 Foot Distance for Highly Experienced
Baseball Pitchers. Journal of Sport and
Exercise Psychology 2007
Wilson, G.J., Simons, J., Wilson, J.M. & Rodriquez, W.
The Non-Emergence of an Especial
Skill: Good is Not Enough. Journal of Sport and
Exercise Psychology. 2007
Kim, J-S., J.
S-R. Lee, G. J. Wilson, B. Sommer, J. Colon, T. Diah, D.
Mendez, J. D. Kingsley, and L. B. Panton. Acute Timing
Effects of β-Hydroxy β-Methylbutyrate (HMB) Supplementation
on Muscle Strength and Soreness.
Med Sci Sports Exerc
G.J. Wilson, J.M. Wilson. The Effects of HMB
Supplementation on Muscle Tissue Structure and Function,
Future Research Implications JISSN, 5:S10, 2008.
Peer Reviewed Publications
and G.J., Wilson. (2006). Contemporary issues in
protein requirements and
consumption for resistance trained athletes. Journal
of the International Society of
Sports Nutrition. 3(1):7-27.
McCullagh, P., & G.J., Wilson. (2007).
Psychology of Physical Activity: What should
undergraduates students know? Quest. Human Kinetics.
Andersen, M.B., P., McCullagh, and G.J., Wilson.
(2007) But what do the numbers
really tell us? Calibration and arbitrary metrics in
sport psychology research
Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. 29(5):664-72.
Wilson, G.J. and J.M., Wilson, Manninen, A. Effects of
beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB) on exercise
performance and body composition across varying levels of
age, sex, and training experience: A review.
& Metabolism 2008, 5:1 Achieved: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18173841?dopt=Abstract
and G.J., Wilson. A Practical Approach to the Taper.
(2008). The Strength
and Conditioning Journal. 20(2): 10-26.
Simons, J, Wilson, J.M., Wilson, G.J.,
Theall, S. & Rodriquez, W. A Test of Self-Efficacy and
as Possible Explanations for the Especial Skills
Phenomenon at the 60.5 Foot Distance for Highly Experienced
Baseball Pitchers. Research Quarterly of Exercise
and Sport (In Press).
SELECTED SCHOLARSHIPS, AWARDS AND CERTIFICATIONS
2007 University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois
First place, CSU Student Research
CSUEB Graduate Student Research Grant
CSUEB Teaching Assistantship
CSUEB Research Assistantship
CSUEB Graduate Student Grant
2006 Joe Morgan Scholarship for Kinesiology
Associated Students Research Fellowship
CSCS, NSCA Certification
Cum Laud Honors, CSU Eastbay, CA
2005-06 Dean's List all Quarters – CSU Eastbay, CA
MEMBERSHIPS IN PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
NSCA National Strength and Conditioning
ISSN International Society of Sports