Name: Chris London
Why I Got Started
As an active teenager I was a keen rower. Competing at a high level in the UK meant daily training, cardio and a healthy diet. Following a 3-year stint at University I struggled to get back in to training regularly. I had a few years where I would get motivated for a few months before gradually falling back in to a bad diet and little exercise.
After a bad motorcycle accident in 2002 I was left with a shattered shoulder socket and a broken collar bone. This again naturally led me to fall back in to a normal lifestyle of drinking, smoking, and eating whatever I wanted.
In late 2007 I decided it was time to sort things out and get my ripped physique back that I had lost so many years ago.
My goal was to go against the grain of most guys approaching 30 who end up with the notorious beer gut and to prove it is possible to transform a fat, flabby, unfit guy in to a ripped physique.
How I Did It
I sort out a local hard core bodybuilding gym in Dunstable, UK called The Gym. Mark Etherden the owner turned out to be a long standing UKBFF finalist and had over 16 years experience in building muscle and sculpting a body.
Mark put together a training plan for me to slowly rebuild the strength in my injured shoulder and start transforming the fat to muscle. Initially my plan consisted of getting back to basics and building a strong core so heavy compound movements on all body parts was essential. For over a year I pounded away knocking out 100's reps of squats, leg press, deadlifts, chest press and shoulder press a week. As the muscle started to build I soon noticed a big transformation in my overall body shape. This gave me the motivation to get serious about my training and diet.
Mark and I then put together a strict training and diet plan with the aim of dropping bodyfat to single figures whilst building as much lean muscle as possible. Mark and I trained 5 days per week as I supported him in his training for the 2009 UKBFF finals.
Training with a competitive bodybuilder meant that I was rapidly building a very strong frame. I soon found that pound for pound I was one of the strongest guys in the gym regularly squatting and leg pressing more than guys way bigger than me. This just gave me even more motivation.
By the summer of 2009 I had dieted down and the transformation was massive. Although not carrying lots of muscle size I now had a lean, muscular physique and a six pack! A world apart from where I had started 18 months ago.
Over the next 6 months I used the winter to grow and managed to add on over 5kg of lean muscle bringing me back up to the 75kg I had started out at but looking very different. With the summer of 2010 approaching it was time to diet down again and see just how ripped I could get.
I had an opportunity to do a photoshoot for a potential magazine feature and supplement sponsor so a date was set and I dieted as hard as possible. For 6 months I stuck to a super strict clean diet, high volume training and lots of cardio.
Since the last photoshoot I have not stepped off the pedal and I am now about to do it all again for the UK magazine 'Beef' and an article in Flex. This time we are shooting a feature with Mark Etherden and me in training.
My biggest thanks must go out to Mark for all his support and motivation. I can now say I am pleased to call Mark one of my closest friends and I wish him all the best in this year's UKBFF 2010 finals.
- Whey Protein: 2 scoops with Oats for breakfast, 1 scoop shake during the day
- Whey Isolate: 1 scoop shake upon waking before cardio, 1 scoop shake immediately after training
- L-Glutamine: 5g x 2 per day
- Protein Bar: 1 Post Training
- BSN No-Xplode: 1 serving during workout
- Gaspari SizeOn Pre Contest: 1 serving pre workout
I spent a lot of time fine-tuning my diet. As I train more for condition than huge size I tend to stay very lean all year round. I eat clean all week and reward myself once a week with a meal out where I satisfy my cravings! Normally in the form of Ben and Jerry's! You need to find a diet that's fits your lifestyle! You have heard it all before but preparation is the key.
I have all my meals cooked and boxed up in the fridge the night before so I never miss a meal. I find I must feed my body small meals every 2-3 hours to keep my body burning. This allows me to stay lean and maintain my abs all year round.
Meals Per Day: 6-7
Carbohydrates: 180g - 210g
Water Per Day: 4-5 Ltrs Plain
Carb Sources: Brown Rice, Sweet Potatoes, Wholemeal Toast, Porridge, Oats
Protein Sources: Steamed Chicken Breast or Salmon, Tuna, Egg Whites
Fat Sources: Udo's Oil, Nuts
Meal 1: Pre Cardio
- 1 serving Whey Isolate
Meal 5: Pre Training
Meal 6: Post Workout
Meal 7: Pre Bed
I am currently training to build lean muscle mass and this is my current workout. I mix the exercises up every 3-4 weeks to shock the body. This way it keeps my muscles guessing and they don't become too used to the same movements week in week out.
I train legs twice per week on a Sunday and Wednesday. I find this really allows me to destroy my quads and I have seen huge improvements from high-volume leg training of 100 reps on squats and leg press. This also burns a huge amount of calories each session.
I always warm up well to prevent injury so on top of the routine shown I will always add 2-3 good warm up sets. Sets will progressively increase in weight depending on the exercise. I find I make far more gains being very strict with my form and not trying to show off with how much weight I can move.
I see this all the time in the gym with guys wanting to load machines up to look good then every rep is a cheat rep and they are not actually working the muscle at all. I pride myself on good form and this has been drilled in to me by Mark since Day 1.
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I Have Seen Huge Improvements From High Volume Leg Training Of 100 Reps On Squats And Leg Press.
Cardio: 30-40 Mins/3-4 Times per Week.
Exercise Routine Rotation: Every 4 Weeks.
|TERMS YOU'LL NEED TO KNOW|
Day 1: Chest/Triceps/Abs
- Flat Barbell Bench Press: 5 set of 10 reps (last set slow on negative)
- Flat Bench Flyes: 5 set of 10 reps
- Incline Seated Press: 5 set of 10 reps (drop set on last set)
- Dip Machine: 5 set of 10 reps
- Cable Pushdowns: 5 set of 10 reps
- Close Grip Barbell Bench: 5 set of 10 reps
Day 2: Biceps/Calves
- Standing Dumbbell Curls: 5 set of 10 reps
- Seated Cable Curls: 5 set of 10 reps
- Machine Preacher Curls: 5 set of 20 reps
- Concentration Curls: 5 sets of 10 reps
Day 3: Quads/Abs
- Barbell Squats: 10 set of 10 reps
- Hanging Leg Raises: 5 sets to failure
- Decline Crunch: 5 sets of 25 reps
Day 4: Back/Hamstrings
- Close-Grip Lat Pulldowns: 5 set of 10 reps
- Seated Row: 5 set of 10 reps
- One Arm Dumbbell Row: 5 set of 10 reps
- Pullovers: 5 sets of 20 reps
- Rear Delts Raise: 5 sets to failure
- Hamstring Curls: 5 sets of 20 reps
Day 5: Shoulders/Abs
- Seated Shoulder Press: 5 set of 10 reps
- Seated Dumbbell Press: 5 set of 10 reps
- Side Lateral Dumbbell Raises: 5 set of 10 reps
- Cable Crossovers: 5 sets of 20 reps
- Hanging Leg Raises: 5 sets to failure
- Decline Crunch: 5 sets of 25 reps
Day 6: Rest
Day 7: Quads
Suggestions for Others
My best advice is to set yourself a goal and don't give in! Once you start to see some progress this will motivate you to keep going. Reward yourself once per week with a good cheat meal then eat clean for the rest of the week.
Go back to basics! Squat heavy! Build a strong core and this will really help with burning the fat! Everyone can change if you want something enough!
You need to find a good training partner who will push you on every rep. Don't try and be a show off and squat 180kg and only do a half rep! Drop the weight and get your ass to the floor! Good form is everything.
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