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Final things...

Update (August 2003)...

Update (Autumn 2004)...


Hi everyone,

I started training a few years ago after being into distance running for a few years.

After suffering a chronic hip joint injury I was forced to re-evaluate my training goals & decide that it was about time to add some muscle to my bones.


After a couple of years training I have succeeded in putting on about 40 pounds of muscle & I'm looking at putting on about the same again over the next few years.

My main problem at the moment is (as you can see) my shoulders & arms. I badly need extra mass to give me proper balance, so I plan on really pushing, first delt development, then working to add some real arm size.

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My Training

Luckily, I've had the help of some of people like Robbie Hazeley & Pat Reeves to offer advice, support & motivation as my training has progressed. Robbie has especially helped with training advice on how to develop larger shoulders & I can't thank either of them enough for all their help. Also a special mention must go to my good mate (& virtual training partner) Joni who I e-mail all the time, he has been a great help in helping me achieve the goals I've accomplished so far.

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At the moment I'm doing 4 days a week training (2 days on, 1 day off, 2 days on, 2 days off). My training has varied over time & at the moment I'm doing Monday - legs, Tuesday- back, chest & triceps, Thursday - shoulders & biceps, Friday - legs (although this is only for a 6 week cycle). I vary isolation exercises a bit, but I usually stick with certain compound movements like the squat, deadlift, dip, shoulder press (using barbell, dumbbell, seated or standing), bench press (incline, flat, dumbbells or barbells), pullovers, chins, pulldowns, bent over rows (barbell, dumbbells), are a few of the regulars.

My regular training involves part of the time using power style training (low reps & bigger rest intervals between sets), & part of the time doing higher rep sets with less rest (in cycles). I still consider myself very much a novice at strength training & I'm still learning new things all the time & I'm looking forward to making some real gains over the next couple of years, as I mature as a strength trainee.

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My diet

Diet has been a real challenge for me. My naturally high metabolism has been boosted by years of distance training that focused on zero muscle & ultra-low body fat. Slowly over the last few years I increased the frequency of my eating & increased my protein intake, so now I eat 6 times a day (minimum - this includes protein shakes), & at night I mix a couple of small shakes that I refrigerate & drink if I awaken during the night (I don't always awake during the night, if so I'll just have them during the next day). I try to eat fairly high raw-food & try to eat a salad most days (although I'm nowhere near a raw-food trainer), I also take B12 supplements & eat sea vegetables most days. I also eat linseed meal (flax seed) that I grind in a coffee grinder everyday (usually morning & last thing at night in a protein shake). I've also taken to having a can of coconut milk on training days (another easy way to up my calories a bit).

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Final things

I'm a bit late coming to the world of strength training, but I intend to catch up fast. As you can tell I haven't learned the art of posing, nor am I in great shape for photos as I'm on constant mass building for the next few years I don't expect to cut-up for a long while yet as I'm in need of mass more than anything at the moment (I'm also pale as anything, as these pictures where all taken on April 10 2003 & I am still suffering the effects of a long, cold winter!). Hopefully, as this page continues you will see a marked improvement in my physique.

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Update (August 2003)

It's been a bit of a stressful few months & training hasn't gone as smoothly as I'd have liked, as things outside the gym have intruded. But, never the less, I've decided to put up a few pics of me taken in Aug '03 in the lead up to attending the Vegan Festival in London in September.

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Well here they are & you can make up your own minds if I've improved, stayed the same or regressed over the past few months.

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Update Autumn 2004


Training changes...

Dietary changes...



I found these pictures that I had planned to put up in the Autumn of 2004 but, being me, I forgot where I put them!

There are only 3 shots but I think it gives you some idea of how things are going (i.e.very slowly :-).

Training changes

Over the course of the Autumn/Winter I had decided to move towards more bodybuilding as I kind of realised that my genetics don't seem to head me towards real strength, but if I can get a bit of size & some symmetry then maybe I could look ok?

As a result of this decision I have been experimenting with various routines to see how they fare. A few I experimented with are POF (Positions of Flexion), Triple drop style of training, Pre-exhaust & various combinations. I have kept the exercise choice pretty much the same, with the big moves of the squat, deadlift, incline bench & shoulder press forming the foundation of the routines. I also worked with both 3 & 4 days splits to see how I do with various volume loads doing the trials (as the intensity of the systems can vary somewhat).

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Looks like I'm ready for the firing squad!

For the first part of 2005 I intend to use a variation of a pre-exhaust, triple drop system. Doing the isolation moves first, then the compounds after, using a triple drop on each exercise (a triple drop is like doing say 8 reps with as heavy as you can manage, then lowering the weight so you can just do 8 more, then finally lowering a third time & aiming at 15 reps. All done without a break in-between).

Dietary changes

Since these pictures have been taken I have added some body-fat just to see if this aids me on my quest for size. The main changes I've made to my diet are really in quantity. I stick to a lot of fresh fruit & vegetables, with salad or steamed vegetables playing a large part of my meals. I do aim at relatively high intake of protein with protein drinks & protein with every meal. At night I drink a protein shake, calcium & vit C pill, also first thing in the morning I have protein, with EFA's & a multivit/min & often B12. I rate coconut milk as good source of calories for those who find it hard to put on weight (NOT for those with cholesterol problems though!). My main change has actually been the inclusion of much higher amounts of Vit C daily (1 to 3 grams a day). The rest is just a matter of getting all the good quality calories you need to grow in 6 or so feeds everyday!


I will take some pictures in Spring 2005 in which I may not be in such a lean condition, but hopefully have a noticeable increase in muscle mass.

Check back then and see how things are moving along!

Grow arms grow!

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