Height: 173cm / 5’ 8 feet
Weight: Off season: 70-74kgs, Competition weight: 64-66kg
When did you first start training?
I was always very sport orientated when I was younger, I played sport daily at every opportunity and loved it. Football, cricket, golf, tennis and snooker were my main sports. I played football, cricket and golf to a fairly high level. I dabbled in everything I could try my hand at, and people always called me the all-round sportsman.
I began gym based training to aesthetically improve my body when I went to University in Chichester to study Sport Science (with Dane and Hayley). First year it was just to fill in gaps between lectures and drop some body fat (which I didn’t do as the Uni lifestyle certainly took over). In my second year I took things more seriously in the gym and cleaned up my diet, I saw results and was hooked. When I graduated University I had my heart set on working in a gym alongside the sports coaching I was doing. I got a job working for Virgin Active back in my home county of Essex and made it my priority to further my knowledge in nutrition and exercise. I studied nutrition and exercise at every opportunity and made it my forte. I qualified as a National certified level 3 Personal Trainer in Dec 2012 and now Personal Training is my full time occupation.
How often do you train?
I generally train 5 times per week, some weeks can be 6 and some 4. I exclusively weight train unless I am in a cutting phase where I add in a little cardio towards the end of the cut, which is predominantly ‘HIIT’ (high intensity interval training) of 5-15 minutes duration.
How long do you train for?
My weight training sessions last between 40-60 mins. I never like to go over the hour mark due to my quite busy schedule and like to keep the intensity high, so this always feels enough. If you don’t feel you have had enough of a workout in an hour, you aren’t working hard enough in my opinion, but this does depend on the type of training obviously.
What are your goals?
My goals for 2014 are to continue building my Personal Training business and make a name for myself. Have my clients achieve their goals and believe they have the best Personal Trainer they could have asked for.
My training goals personally, are to add muscle to my frame so I can bring a better overall physique to my next competition which I am targeting around May 2015 to hopefully qualify for the British finals.
Which is your favourite muscle group to train?
My favourite muscle groups to train often changes but I have always liked training triceps and I don’t mind chest and shoulders too (I sometimes train all those in one session on ‘push days’ so like that workout!). I hate the pain of training legs and how draining it is pushing yourself to your limits but it is the most important so I never miss leg day! The feeling after is always the best and most rewarding.
Can you talk through your weekly workout?
My weekly workouts are always different, it keeps my body guessing and stops me ever getting bored. I generally like to train each body part twice a week or every 4-5 days and train in all the repetition ranges, incorporating heavy lower rep, moderate and high rep with supersets, drop sets, giant sets, rest pause sets and adjusting time under tension.
A typical split I would follow if training Mon-Fri might be:
Monday- Deadlift, back and (hamstrings dominant) legs
Tuesday- Chest, core and calves
Wednesday- Shoulders, arms
Thursday- (Quad dominant) legs, core and calves
Friday- Chest and Back
Do you follow a particular diet?
I don’t follow a particular diet, I track my macronutrients and calories and push them as much as I can to keep my metabolism as fast as possible. I always like to experiment with my body and see what works for me and what could work for my clients. I always aim for 1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, around 20-30% of calories from fat and the rest are filled with carbs. I keep my diet 90% clean, filled with high quality protein sources such as meats, fish and eggs, complex carbs like sweet potatoes and oats, and healthy fats from nuts, eggs and some dark chocolate sometimes. I use the odd treat to fill the rest of my macros for the day and to enjoy the little things.
I like to eat every 2 and a half to 3 hours and find this works best for me and allows me to hit the total numbers I want for the day. I eat a lot of food so this way I am full all day even when heavily dieting and never go too long without a meal.
I refeed with a high carb day (once per week) mainly when dieting that could be anything from 300-450g depending on the stage of my cut or bulking phase and how my body is looking and responding. I generally fill these carbs with whichever foods I want. I do cheat occasionally as I am a big food lover, pizza and anything sweet like ice cream or chocolate is my favourite so when I am not looking to be losing fat I normally use a cheat meal of whatever I want once a week or fortnight.
What supplements so you take?
I have never a big supplement user as feel your diet is all your really need but recently I have added some more to see how my body responds. I use a multi vitamin and cod liver oil with breakfast, whey protein with dextrose and creatine post workout and BCAA’s while I train. I also have casein (slow releasing protein) for recipes before bed and to help me get a nice chocolate fix without the guilt.
What music do you listen to when training?
I listen to a wide range of music when I train but I prefer to listen to old school garage, hip-hop, R&B and whatever I like that is currently in the charts at the time. I like to get in the zone and have some music that will motivate me when I’m training.
Who do you look up to or admire?
I don’t particularly have a role model who I inspire to be but to just be the best that I can be and improve myself. I always look up to my parents who have always supported me and helped me my whole life, so I am very grateful to them and admire the type of people they are. In the fitness industry I do admire Ryan Terry and what he has achieved last year, he has an amazing physique!
What is your best achievement?
The achievements I am most proud of are my achievements on the sports field. Scoring a hat trick in a county cup final which we won on penalties I will always remember. Taking 7 wickets for 18 runs in a cricket match as well as holding 3 club batting partnership records. But more recently (November 2013) I stepped on stage for the United Kingdom bodybuilding and fitness federation (UKBFF) and competed in the Men’s Physique category. It was something I never envisaged myself doing, so it was very satisfying to step on stage with some of the best physiques in the country and the mental and physical challenge I put myself through to get there.
What advice would you give anybody who wants to start training?
Be patient and consistent! Results don’t come over night, but with some dedication, hard work and consistency you can achieve the body you desire. The most important thing is your nutrition, I can’t stress this enough, make sure you eat for your goals. If your goal is to put on muscle then make sure you are in a calorie surplus (consume more calories than you burn) and get enough protein (1g per pound of bodyweight is enough). And if your goal is to lose fat then make sure you are in a slight calorie deficit and make the right food choices, most importantly in regards to the amount and types of carbs you are eating. Stick to mainly compound exercises like squats, dead lifts, bench press, pull ups/downs, rowing movements and over head press. And lastly, NEVER SKIP LEG DAY!