25 Apr My Fitness Transformation: How I Train, What I Eat & Everything in Between
I’ve been working out since I was about 18-19.
Actually that’s not true, it was when I was in my early teens that I started doing a bit of exercise with my Dad.
He’d come wake me up early, turn the fan on (so it was cold and I had to get up and get warm) and we’d do a heap of pushups and sit-ups first thing in the morning.
But that wasn’t very serious of course and I wouldn’t even say I knew what I was doing really until I was getting closer to my mid 20’s.
But over the last 5 years or so I’ve learnt more and got a more serious with it.
I’ve learnt a lot more about training styles, health, food intake, carbs, protein, cardio etc etc blah blah blah…
That’s a lot to take in especially if you’re a newbie.
And over the last few years I’ve gone from wanting to try and be ‘massive’ to now trying to have more overall health, symmetry and have a more balanced lifestyle with fitness.
So for this post I wanted to show you what I’ve been doing over the last 6 months to achieve the little transformational look in the photo above. (Even though the above transformation was over 3 months).
So let me break it down as best I can and hopefully this inspires you to get fit, be healthy and achieve your own fitness transformation.
Watch the video here or keep reading:
What I’ve Been Doing to Achieve My Fitness Transformation
My Training Style
My training style has always been reasonably similar over the years but over the last year or so I’ve focused more on hypertrophy (basically good looking aesthetics and size all mixed together).
As opposed to just wanting to be ‘bigger’ when I was in my mid to late 20’s.
So how has this changed how I train?
A few years ago I came across a very cool online trainer called The Natural Transformer (Joel Bushby).
He even goes to my gym.
Joel’s been on the cover of numerous fitness magazines, he’s got well over half a million Facebook followers, around 150,000 Instagram followers etc etc…
You get the picture, he’s famous.
I’ve been following him ever since I heard of him. He’s also a very entertaining guy on his social media so I’m sure that helps with his popularity.
So a while ago I took one of his online training programs and started incorporating his style of training into my routine.
This is when I started to get a bit more creative with my training, mix it up a bit and start doing more drop sets, supersets and less-done moves than what most bodybuilding style trainers would do.
Several years ago I had the mentality that I just had to keep lifting heavier and heavier to get bigger, not realising the damage that could be done to my body by letting my form get a bit ‘loose’.
Thankfully that has changed. I still lift heavy that’s for sure (for me anyway) but now it’s more controlled and my form is far better.
As a result of this (and many other things I’ll mention below) I now look and feel better than I ever have before.
So now I still stick to a bodybuilding style of training but I incorporate a lot of super-setting (eg: doing another different exercise after another).
And I focus more on feel, stretch and mind-muscle connection.
So a week of training could look like this for me (although I’m always changing it up):
- Monday: Legs, abs and cardio
- Tuesday: Back and triceps
- Wednesday: Cardio
- Thursday: Shoulders and cardio
- Friday: Chest and biceps
- Saturday: Off and/or outdoor cardio
- Sunday: Off and/or outdoor cardio
As you can see my cardio is sprinkled throughout the week. Sometimes I’ll do some nearly every day, sometimes I’ll take a day off here and there.
More on cardio further down below.
So with my training above, it’s usually always super-setted too.
So on Tuesday for instance I’d do one back exercise set and then go straight to a triceps exercise set.
I usually always just do 3 sets of each exercise.
Reps vary. Usually at the start of a workout I keep it around 6-9 reps.
But then some other times I’ll start off with a rope or machine exercise and do 15 reps to get some feel and ‘pump’ into the muscle.
But usually as I do each different exercise I progressively do more reps.
So if for the first exercise I start at 6-9 reps, then the next exercise/sets I’ll go for around 8-10 and then the next exercise/sets around 10-12.
Again this depends on how I feel that day, where I’m at in my training cycle, whether I feel like lifting heavier etc etc…
I won’t go into what exercises I do as it’s reasonably mainstream and you can look them up online.
I use a lot of the usual types of exercises and throw a lot of different twists into them here and there.
Here’s just a few of the main ones: t-bar deadlift, dumbell row, incline dumbell press, overhead shoulder press, lateral raises, tricep body dips, tricep cable extensions, incline bicep dumbell curls, squats, walking lunges, etc etc… the list goes on and on…
Nothing too crazy although I do mix up the angles, styles, etc a lot.
The biggest thing for me has been incorporating more of The Natural Transformers training exercises into my routine.
The cool thing about his exercise routines is they sometimes use several different muscle groups and they keep you ‘on the ball’ so to speak.
Not to mention it mixes it up and hits muscles from different angles than you may be used too.
Plus this also means you can get your workout done quicker and still work all body parts.
First of all I don’t like to call it a diet as that insinuates that its temporary and that you’re going to go back to where you were before.
I just like to call it my normal eating routine.
So the biggest change I’ve made here over the last while is I do Intermittent Fasting (Google it).
This is basically where you only eat during an 8 hour window each day, and the other 16 hours you are fasting.
So for me, my last meal is at about 6-6:30pm at night, so that means my next meal isn’t till 10-10:30am the next day.
Now most people won’t wanna do this. They’ll think it’s too hard.
But it’s definitely worth giving a try.
The idea behind Intermittent Fasting is that it’s supposed to burn more fat because your body goes into a fasted state, thereby using your body fat for energy, which it’s then supposed to burn off.
That’s the basic idea of it but there are many more benefits to it that I am definitely not qualified to talk about here but I highly recommend you look into as it’s been a big benefit for me.
Ok so what food do I eat?
For many years I put food into containers with chicken, broccoli and rice every day…
And because I’m a lazy cook, it always tasted pretty average. Hence I now don’t like to eat that meal anymore haha.
Not to say that that isn’t a good meal to have, it really is.
I just ended up getting over it, although I would go back to this in the future if someone else cooked it and it was mixed up a bit from day to day.
So now because I don’t eat until around 10:30am each day that first meal is a reasonably big one.
Here’s what I’m having at the moment:
First meal of the day around 10am
- 4 rice cakes with a fairly large amount of cottage cheese on each one
- Protein shake
- 2 eggs cooked in the pan
- Small bowl of muesli and yoghurt
- Sometimes a few spoonfuls of peanut butter
Second meal of the day around 2pm (Lunch)
- 2 eggs on 2 slices of high protein rye bread (its around 15 grams of protein for 2 slices)
- Protein shake
Third meal of the day around 6pm (Dinner)
- Some kind of meat, usually chicken, beef etc
- Veges, chips, rice, pasta
The first 2 meals of the day usually stay pretty consistent for me but dinner time can vary massively.
Sometimes its super clean with just meat and veges, other times its more indulgent with some meat, maybe some pasta, hot chips etc etc…
As you can see, I’m not massively strict with my eating.
Although if you want to make big fitness transformation then I highly recommend you do.
I do always try to keep it as healthy as possible but I do let myself have some snacks, lollies and chocolate here and there.
Obviously if I was trying to get a bit more leaner and ripped this would change a bit and I’d stick to less carbs.
I do however focus on trying to always get in enough protein.
For myself, I’m around 83 kilos as of writing this and I aim for around 150-160 grams of protein.
So roughly about 2 grams of protein for every kilo of bodyweight.
I’ve never been a huge supplement taker. I’ve always tried to get my proteins and good stuff from vitamins and food.
But over the last few years I’ve slowly been investing in a few things here and there but I am still by no means someone that takes many.
Basically this is all I take:
- Protein powder
- Vitamins: Fish oil tablets, magnesium, zinc, vitamin c
And on the odd occasion I take some:
- And sometimes some fat loss type tablets if I happen to buy something
But yeh basically I take nothing. Especially compared to some people anyway.
I actually want to start changing this though especially as I get older.
There is still several other things that I’d like to have on hand all the time instead of just taking them here and there.
Now I mentioned cardio briefly above and this is something I’ve definitely started doing more over the last year or so.
I used to never do any several years ago and hence was always quite ‘solid’ looking with no real great definition.
Now I do more and lately I’m trying to mix it up with walks, mountain climbing, hiking, stair climbing etc etc…
Usually my cardio is done in the gym (even though I’d prefer it to be outside) on the stationary bike.
I do this; one because its quicker and two, because I can read a book and learn at the same time.
It’s not crazy high intensity cardio on the bike but it’s also not a walk in the park either.
But if I do have more time to go outside then I like to mix it up with the odd high intensity stair climbing session or walks on the ocean front here where I live.
By doing this I’ve made a massive difference to how my body looks.
I now can see my muscle shape better, I feel better, I have more energy and it’s given my body a better overall aesthetic look.
Depending on how strict I’ve been with my eating at the time, I usually try to do cardio (whether its at the gym or outside) at least 5 times a week.
Obviously I try to incorporate that into my outdoor adventures that I get up to as well.
This is something The Natural Transformer does a lot of too, integrating his fitness into his daily life which I think is the best and most fun way.
So how do you balance all this?
I guess this all sounds like a lot but when you’ve been doing it for over 10 years it’s not that hard really.
I just try to treat it like it’s something I HAVE to do.
Once you have a plan or follow one (like The Natural Transformers) you’ve just gotta think about when you’re going to work out, how often and what your body goals are.
Figure out when you have the most time, the most energy and the most inclination to actually get the workout done and go for it.
Going from shredded to not shredded and back again
I’ve gone through several periods where I decide I’m going to get super ripped and do, but then once I achieve it, I tend to go back to having a little more body fat.
Which is absolutely fine and I’ve found this to be more sustainable. (Again this just depends on your goals).
But I think whatever you aim for, just remember why you’re doing it.
You need to make it so that it’s not sooo hard to maintain.
If its hard to maintain then you’re going to dread the gym, healthy eating etc etc…
You still need to integrate it into your daily lifestyle and if you do then you’re going to find it more enjoyable to keep what you’ve worked for.
Anyway that’s just the process I’ve been using the last few years to achieve my little fitness transformation and it’s been working pretty well for me.
I’m sure something pretty similar will work for you too, but again this depends on your own body and your goals.
I hope this has helped in some way to inspire you to get fit and looking (and feeling) great!
Now go get fit 🙂
Click the pic below to check out The Natural Transformers programs
(Use my coupon code to get 10% OFF anything you order: ADRIAN10)