James Hurst 2x IFBB Olympian HandsomeMuscle Talks With Nutritionbeast.com

If James Hurst also known as ‘HandsomeMuscle’ hasn’t been on your radar lately, he should be! James has been zeroing in on his diet and is getting ready getting to take the stage at the Baltimore Grand Prix and Fitness Expo. James credits his amazingly shredded physique to making every calorie he eats count. This top pro has a bright future ahead. Find out more!

  • Hometown: San Diego, California (the 619)
  • Current Location: San Jose, California
  • Height: 5’9”
  • Weight: 175 lbs
  • Age: 29
  • Favorite Lift: Dumbbell Row
  • Favorite Car: Tacoma (my Taco)

Social Media:


For those unfamiliar with you, can you tell us a bit about your background and how you got involved in the fitness industry?

I started out as a ‘skinny’ kid in San Diego where kids made fun of me and called me ‘stickman.’ Going into high school, my mom bought me a weight bench, and I spent every day with my 15 pound ‘Body by Jake’ barbell set; things progressed from there. After that, I decided I would look great in a pair of board shorts, and the rest is history!

What were your biggest challenges when you first started training?

My biggest challenge was and is still is, not eating enough. That’s where I can honestly say that The Protein Cookie Company’s Protein Cookies come in handy. Not to mention, they are oh so delicious!


Congratulations on your recent engagement to IFBB Pro Michelle Mein. How did the two of you meet, and tell us about your wedding plans?

Michelle and I met when we both thought we were in great shape, half naked at a pool party in Vegas. (Laughs) What happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas. I moved to San Jose, California a year after we started going out, and six years later we are getting married. We are getting married in beautiful San Diego, California in February 2017.

The two of you are getting ready to take the stage at the Baltimore Grand Prix and Fitness Expo. How is your training and diet going, and will you be making any adjustments prior to the show?

We’re both training just as intense as ever, and we’re both focused on beating our last physiques. Everything is really coming together for the both of us! And in all seriousness, as far as the adjustments we have made, we are actually both eating more. For my meals, I have added two Protein Cookies daily from The Protein Cookie Company. And Michelle has added one Protein Cookie to her meal plan daily as well.

What’s the one thing you are looking forward to treating yourself to after the competition?

Cheez-Its! Extra Toasty Cheez-Its to be exact! (Laughs) I am going to eat the whole box and not share! (Laughs)

How did you become involved with The Protein Cookie Company? And what do you love most about the company?

I tried The Protein Cookie Company’s Cookies when Michelle brought them home from one of her shows and loved them!. When The Protein Cookie Company asked me to be a part of their team, I was more than happy to join them! I love to represent a product and company that I believe in.

Which Protein Cookie is your favorite, and how do you fit them into your meal plan?

The Classic Chocolate Chip Cookie from The Protein Cookie Company is my favorite. Right now before I weight train, I eat two Classic Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies.


Are you able to incorporate The Protein Cookie Company Cookies when prepping for a show?

Absolutely! I even include them in my meal plan all the way through my contest prep.

What does your current training look like?

My training varies, but I do push twice a week, pull twice a week, and legs once a week.

Who has the better abs, you or Michelle?

If I don’t say Michelle, I’m sleeping on the couch. (Laughs)

What is your secret to your incredible abdominal development?

For me, diet is the key. Cardio and my go to ab exercise, hanging leg raises also help; I can hang like a monkey all day! (Laughs)

What does your current diet look like?

James Current Daily Macros:

  • 3000 Calories
  • 338 grams Carbs
  • 263 grams Protein
  • 67 grams Fat

What’s the one food you couldn’t live without, and how do you handle cravings?

I couldn’t live without Burritos from Lolita’s in Chula Vista! Call me crazy, but I really don’t get cravings.

When traveling for shows, do you prep your meals ahead of time? And what are some snacks that you pack for your long flights?

I’m fortunate enough to have a meal prep service provide me with my meals. Thank you, FlexZoneMealPrep! I pack my meals in baggies and of course I pack lots of Protein Cookies from The Protein Cookie Company!

What supplements could we find in your kitchen?

You would find the entire line of Global Formulas in my kitchen.

  • Protein
  • Fat Loss
  • Pre Workout Stimulants
  • BCAA’s
  • Joint Support
  • Fish Oil
  • Essential Vitamins and Minerals


Why lightning bolt tattoos?

Well, being from San Diego, California we have the Chargers football team, and I was their mascot. (Laughs) I’m a big fan of the Chargers.

Tell us about your dog.

Michelle brought our dog Max home from the shelter without telling me. She told me that she’d seen the cutest puppy, but forgot to tell me that she was adopting him. As soon as I saw him, I immediately fell in love with the little guy.  (Laughs) He is really smart and so lovable. He is just as goofy as me, and I consider him my son! (Laughs)

What are your hobbies and interests outside of the fitness industry?

I really enjoy exploring new food joints and watching movies.

What do you love most about living in California? And what do you recommend is a ‘must see’ if someone comes for a visit?

I definitely love the diversity and the weather of California. I’d say a ‘must see’ is San Diego, of course. I would also recommend San Francisco, Carmel, and Napa too!

Photo credit: Noel Daganta

Be Social!

Connect with The Protein Cookie Company!


Did you love this interview? Leave a comment below and share it with your friends.

Looking for personal, 1-on-1 help with your diet and training? Let Nutrition Beast help you reach your goals and be your best self by checking out the services page!

Beastly Blessings!



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here