28/06/2016 – A Year Ago To Date…

It was a year ago to date that I did my first competition and that’s whats led me to type up a blog post…


I need to go right back to the beginning of when I started lifting weights. I have hundreds, if not thousands of pictures, notes, weights, measurements, food diaries, videos and so on from over the years. I use these to monitor myself and to see how far I have come. I honestly look at myself in the mirror and see the same old George that I used to be. As sad as it sounds, I rely on my notes to prove to myself that I am on the right, yet long path.

I needed a year to take it easy and that’s what I’ve been doing. I’ve been consistent with training, yet relaxed and enjoying other aspects of life too. I will push every single day now for the next 12 months and see what I can do to my body. I owe this to myself and I am going to make some changes to the way I approach the sport from a personal point of view and I will also progress and hopefully help others along the way.

I go to the gym, punish myself with a bland boring diet, do cardio every day, sleep, dream, focus and so on, to see how I can change things to better myself. I also have a huge passion for helping others and I strongly believe this is what will separate me and other personal trainers that just do it because it’s an easy option in life. I do everything through passion and I can hold my hand up and say that I am just as passionate about my goals today, as I was when I started dieting 7 or 8 years ago. I have broadened my knowledge along the way, I have dieted, gained strength, changed my physical, as-well-as mental approach to life and I am happy to feel this way after 6 years of 100% natural bodybuilding. I feel that my place in this sport will be to represent the average person and I have documents that people can freely read and see that I have so much passion in myself and I will put equally as much passion into helping them too. Unless they take the piss.

The old pictures were took on the very first day I started to lift ‘a weight’ the other pictures are today in the gym. I looked at the pictures on my phone today from the gym and I felt so disheartened with how poor I look. All I could see was the old me and it messes with my head a lot. I then found my first pictures and realised that I am progressing. Granted it’s slow progress, however I have stuck to my guns and have done what I set out to do.  The next year I have to stay focused and follow my heart. I have my diet in place that I hope to stick to for the next year. I still don’t eat meat or fish, yet if I really fancy some meat I will have it. I just don’t want it and that’s that.

Fortunately the hard part is done. I feel that I can put all the last 6 years together and have a good shot at reaching a few new goals over the next 12 months. I don’t look at it in any other way than a lifestyle. I don’t really have to try to do any of it, as it just happens. I still have my short term goals and I will post about that over the next few weeks, and there is also my dream goal to discuss over the coming months and then there’s the very long term goal which I’ll discuss when I’m old and battered. hehe

I motivate myself and I think this is very important. I see to many people relying on short cuts and big words to impress others, when it’s in fact their ego talking and not passion. I’m working towards bigger things in life and I will keep pushing until I fulfil my dreams. (remember this is a fitness blog and I try to keep it fitness related. I have much bigger dreams in life with my family etc, just this is strictly my blog talking about me)

What has changed in 1 year?

  • The main thing must be my diet. I’ve discovered a lot of new things and cut out fish/meat.
  • Had 6 months off supplements.
  • I’ve noticed more people are asking for help with diet training etc.
  • Had a few mentally challenging months after the show.
  • Explored more aspects of the sport.
  • I’ve found everything to be easier in general.


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23/06/2016 – 22 May 2010

The bottom pic is a very quick random shot during sets today and I quite like it. It’s straight off the camera and with no filter, adobe, tan, shave and that clearly shows… HOWEVER, I like the picture and decided to dig back through my archives and find my very first back pic that I took a week into lifting. It’s exciting to know I still have the same passion I do now as I did back then, but this is not about that…

So, I compared the 2 pictures for an obvious look at when I started compared to now. From doing this I decided to type up a quick blog post (which is this) with a short explanation of how long it’s took me, why it’s took so long, and what is the point as beer and pizza are better…

How long has it took me? 

6 years.

Why the hell has it took 6 years?

Because I started with no knowledge at all, yet I thought I knew everything. It took me  years to figure out how to lift to the best of my ability and nutrition plays part of it. I spent years changing my taste buds, shirking my stomach, learning, talking, reading, watching and so on. This all took time to process as I didn’t understand it well enough to utilise it at the point in time, but I was on the path to progression. The hardest part was diet. I never used a PT, I never took steroids.


Pizza and Beer?

I had it last week.

Granted I gave up a lot at certain points, due to taking it as serious as I could. That’s part of my journey though and I wouldn’t change it. I guess I just had to have a temporary break from things I enjoy at times. The good part is, I can relax a bit now and I hope to never sway too far wrong, as I programmed my brain to not allow it. I think my body fat will always be a subconscious issue with me.

Do I regret losing all those years for that? 

If it was a chore, then maybe. Not a single day has been a chore for me to be honest. I sort of do it on auto pilot now. It’s a lifestyle. It is part of my life and 3 hours a week isn’t all that bad really…


I never want to compete again. I hate it. Although I will leave my options open. Yet if I do compete, I still hate it!

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16/06/2016 – Passion vs Ego

For the best part of the last 12 months I have simply been plodding along with no real interest in the sport at all. I didn’t watch any videos, wasn’t interested in Mr Olympia, my diet was about 60% right, my training wasn’t full on every session and I generally went to the gym on auto pilot for most of the time. In the last 2, maybe 3 months I have got my head back in the game and this is what leads me to this blog post and what I want to note down.

I’ve tried dieting or going flat out at the gym many times, even though I really didn’t want to do either. This is a set up to fail in all aspects of what I do. I found that when I tried to do something, yet I really didn’t want to, or didn’t really care about it, I always failed. However, when I set out to do something and I really want to, then I will succeed, this is where the passion comes into play.

For the last few weeks, I have tried to clean my diet up and drop the body fat. I WANT to do it and I am very passionate about doing so. Once I click and do it for passion, I step into a zone and I push harder in the gym and develop a type of eating disorder that programs my head into sticking to my diet without any issue at all.

I have been to kids parties, cooked a BBQ down my families and bought the kids all sorts of treats without even thinking about snacking on them. I wont even lick the knife after making them a sandwich or whatever. This is because I am passionate about my goal. It’s my goal, for me, with no stress, no competition, no outside reason, it’s just for me. As it’s just for me, I can only fail myself and I wont let that happen. I’m not completely dialled in with my diet, I still have my milk and so on, I just know what I’m doing.

In my opinion, too many people are doing it for reasons other than passion. They preach that they have knowledge or qualifications and yet they are crying that they cant eat such and such. If you really are doing it for passion then these snacks or whatever wont even pass your mind. When I fancy snacks, I know I’m not doing it through passion and I’m trying to force myself to do something I don’t want to do. Especially when I’m over 10% body fat.

The last 2 weeks I have set a diet and stuck to it 100%. It’s been no problem at all, as I have my goal in mind and I will conquer it through passion. I’m just carbing up now or refeeding and I wont touch a cheat meal as I’m eating for knowledge on my body and not for enjoyment. HOWEVER, I’m planning on having a few beer the weekend and socialise with a friend that I see only a couple of times a year. I’m certainly not putting this side of my life on hold, as it’s what life is. I’ve done all the bits that require me going out for a meal and taking tubs of food and all this for what? I’m only doing it for myself. I already know I can discipline myself if I really need to, I just don’t understand why I would need to right now. I know that I can get close to my competition condition within 2 weeks of diet if I need too, so I’d like to think I’m about 4-6 weeks from where I really would like to be. Just for the record, the first show I can think of doing is September, so that’s certainly not my goal for now.

So, passion is when I do something I do that feels right in the heart. I don’t crave for things and I always have 1 more rep in the gym. Ego is when you are trying to impress others and you really don’t want to be doing it, just because folk feel the need to prove something to others.

That’s my opinion on myself anyway and I do believe this. Always do it for you, challenge yourself, stuff everyone else…

14/06/2016 – My Training Routine

I was just talking to a friend and decided I have a few things I’d like to note down and here’s the place for me to do just that…


Everything is a very basic plan of what we do. The reps stay the same but the exercises change.

Day 1 – 


  • Incline dumbbell press 3 sets. 12 rep weight, 8 rep weight, 6 rep weight
  • Hammer Strength Press – 8 reps weight, 6 reps weight
  • Peck deck – 12 reps weight, 8 reps weight


  • Smith machine press – 8 reps, 8 reps
  • Side dumbbells – 12 reps, 8 reps
  • Front dumbbells – 6 reps alternating (12 total for both arms) x2


  • V bar press – 15 reps, 6 reps
  • Iso machine – 12 reps

Day 2


  • Narrow pronated pull downs – 12 reps, 8 reps, 8 reps
  • Pull overs – 8 reps, 8 reps
  • Hammer strength pull downs – 8 reps, 6 reps
  • Seated row – 8 reps, 8 reps
  • Rear delts cables – 10 reps, 8 reps
  • Barbell row – 10 reps, 6 reps
  • Shrugs – front x 12, back x 12, front x 12


  • Standing alternating curls elbows back – 8 per arm, 8 per arm
  • Flat floor cable curls – 10 drop 10 drop 10


  • Leg raise – 15
  • Ab cable crunch – 15
  • Ab crunch – 15

Day 4 



  • Extension – 12 reps, 12 reps, 12 reps
  • Press – 12 reps, 12 reps
  • Hack squat – 12 reps, 12 reps
  • Barbell squat 20 reps, 8 reps


  • Flat curls – 12 reps, 12 reps
  • Seated curls – 12 reps drop set
  • Stiff leg deadlift – 12 reps


  • Standing – 15 reps, 12 reps
  • Seated – 15 reps

After day 7, it’s back to day 1.

45 minutes training per session. Get in and get it done is our idea.

Carbs before bed usually.


The first set of any day, is always a light weight to get some blood flowing and that’s it. After that, it’s all out on every single set and rep to failure. I don’t really do a warm up set for every exercise, I just do a weight that I can hit 8 reps for and then to finish it with a beyond failure set on every exercise.

Chest incline – 12 reps with 22.5kg dumbells – 8 reps 35kg to failure – 6 reps 42.5kg to complete safe failure.

Safe = lower them down to my chest and not throwing them from head height.  


I try to do this religiously every morning before anything. I do 40 minutes at walking pace only.

I know for a fact that cardio with a poor diet will NOT make me lose body fat. I’ve been running tests on myself with this for years and I know I’m right. A good diet with cardio is the only way to shift the fat for me.

All this means nothing unless you train the way we do. We have some tricks that we use together and they make a little difference. These are things we will try with others when we train with them…

I also know that no matter how hard I try to diet or bulk, it’s virtually impossible unless my brain really wants to do it. When I say I want to bulk, yet I know my body doesn’t want to, I will fail without doubt. When I set a solid goal and focus on it, I will achieve anything I want to. I certainly have my goals in motion now and despite my meat and supplements being removed, I already know I will conquer my goal… because I’m following it through passion. 


To get cut or at least progress with my meat free diet and no supplements. It should be interesting to see how if find it. I can tell you that I really enjoy supplements and they do help, I just chose the clever idea of dropping them to gain knowledge.




24/05/2016 – Back First Sets

After looking at myself yesterday at the gym and comparing myself to how I were this time last year. I’m clearly holding a lot of body fat. When I used a supplement stack, ate meat and had my head in the game last year, I feel that my strength has gone down a bit and I’m expecting to be much lighter this year with the body fat I had last year.

What is the point in doing what I’m doing then?

Knowledge. To learn, discover, find ways around obstacles. I have nothing to prove to anyone but myself and once I get all the answers I’m looking for, I hope I can utilise everything I’ve found, to better myself mentally and physically. There’s also the other aspect of helping others reach their goals.

Here’s a short video of the first feeler sets on back day. That’s all I do for abs at the end for now. On my second sets I add a bit more weight and much more aggression, hence why the phone went off as I need my training partner. I wanted to update my blog every 2 weeks or so and I will do a similar thing in another 2 weeks. Just so I can see what I’m doing and where I’m heading.


22/05/2016 – Going On a Bit…

Let’s start this by being honest and fair. I like to call myself a bodybuilder, I train like a bodybuilder, I even train legs! However, given the fact that I’m not on any anabolic chicken, I’m never going to compete with folk that use enhancements. I have no problem with that at all and it’s my problem not there’s. Fundamentally, I’m going against everything that the sport promotes/requires. (and my body clearly shows this) I don’t have meat, fish, supplements, steroids and I train with my wife. (there’s nothing wrong with that by the way as she would give half the men a run for their money, especially the effort she puts in) I have decided to do it this way as I crave for knowledge and as long as I’m in no rush to see changes, I can discover things with my own body in my own time.

So, now that I’ve gave myself a pat on the back for trying to make it harder for my myself, I would like to talk about a few things…

People ALWAYS ask, where do you get your protein from? Quite naturally I avoid this question. Why should I be taking the hard and long path to give them the answers and let them pass the information on to boost their ego or to sell on?! This is my own little thing and something that will make me feel good in my own little way. If anyone is bigger than me, they clearly already have the edge over me. I find it quite funny how they ask me when I’m much smaller than them.

How do I balance my macros (protein/carbs/fat)? 

I usually do this with a plastic fork, sometimes I forget my plastic cutlery and have to use my finger though. On a serious note, it’s easy. Yet, why would I consider sharing this information with folk if I haven’t pushed myself to see if it actually works first. I’ll share this information in my own time, even if I fail reaching my goals. There’s plenty of information on the internet I guess, it’s just what’s true and what’s making money.

I can easily get over 200g Protein, less than 80g carbs and 30g fat. Getting more carbs and fat is even easier.

My goals?

To be like I were in my last show when I was on every supplement, 100% dedicated and ate meat religiously, but without anything I just mentioned.

So what’s this thing I’ve discovered?

Ok, this is my fun bit. I can play on the park. Obviously the most important thing in my life, is my family. I was with the kids on the park the other day and I have plenty of energy to run around and play. There’s a steep twin bar climbing frame on the park that the kids slide down. For no other reason than to play about, I tried doing pull ups, letting go of my hands in between movements and working towards the top. As pointless as it sounds, I discovered that I have definitely made the right choice by staying natural whilst my children are young. Granted, this is my way of justifying why I have stayed natural and skinny for now.


I’ve already decided I want to compete at some point. I’m just deciding if I should do my own real thing, which is to take photos in the gym at my own leisure without any pressure at all, or go up against part time natural bodybuilders on stage and feel dwarfed* or to go in a federation that clearly uses enhancements, just so I can do my own thing and take away the stress of the actual competition. All I genuinely want are my photos on stage that I can keep in my archive and compare myself over the years to see exactly how and what is going on with different ways I try things.

*I have never said anyone in a natural show is on steroids and I quite frankly don’t care. If they are on steroids or have been and compete in a natural show, they are already losers in my eyes. But I wont even mention anything about this on my blog…

The last year.

If I see any difference in terms of muscle growth it is down to being consistent and nothing else. If I do see any sort of positive growth, I will be very pleased, as I’m going against almost every principle promoted. Not intentionally, just as a challenge for myself that I enjoy. This is another reason why I am small and I know this.

My plan

My blog is what I use to track certain points along my journey and everyone can see what I’m doing. I have no secrets that I have to hide. You can click through the links and see how I’ve changed and what path I have took. My plan is to eventually help others achieve their goals through hard work and they can hopefully trust me, as I know how different things affect my body and I can relate to them when they hit rock bottom and feel they need to give up. I ain’t talking about helping folk at a professional level, I’m talking about genuine folk that have goals and aims they want to achieve.

Also I will have years of notes that people can look at and see my background and see that I’m not one of these people who pass the online PT course and try to tell everyone everything and yet they look terrible and keep asking others for help themselves. But again, I won’t talk about that on my blog…

I also note down all my foods, and gym progress. It will all help me one day and it already does.

I never say I’m vegetarian as I don’t know if I want to cut out meat long term. I’m 100% sure I want to be meat free for now, yet if I decide to step it up a level, I think it may be important to add meat back to my diet. I will compete meat free before I consider going back on it though.


Back when I started, I had no idea about nutrition at all. I though bicep curls would make me a bodybuilder (I guess some folk still do) the changes I have made over the years have been small and have took a long time. I remember when I swapped chippy chips for home fried chips and then to oven chips and then to jacket potato and so on. This alone took months if not years, as I had no idea what-so-ever about nutrition. I certainly didn’t have a clue what protein was let alone what it did.

I remember buying my first tub of protein from Holland and Barrett. At the time I thought of it as a steroid type product. I was afraid to use it and followed the instructions to the exact letter. I remember using a knife to scrape the excess off the scoop as I didn’t know if it would cause me harm. It’s funny looking back at it, but at least I did it all myself! This make me now wonder if everything in the sport is over complicated (for a basic level like myself) and that’s why I enjoy the challenge.


Let’s be fair, if people buy, people make. I’ve used many gimmick products that I see folk praising up and I buy into it to find they are absolutely rubbish. I wont name them as I don’t want to upset folk directly, but let’s just say that, chalk, straps and a GOOD QUALITY belt is all I need. I have knee straps that I never use, however a good belt like the DY one I use is essential for me. I have bought many in the past and they haven’t even been worth keeping in my gym bag. Obviously I have my own opinions and others will disagree, I just try not to buy into all the junk now, HOWEVER I find these steps I took to be essential from an exciting journey point of view and from an experience point of view. The discovering stage is great fun! Now I feel boring and miserable without all the products that make me feel and look like an Olympic champion.

If I had an opportunity to get free stuff from promoting something I thought was rubbish, I would avoid it at all costs. I don’t feel that I need to do that, for what I want from the sport right now. Things change though and If I do ever have that opportunity, I would have to let people know the situation.

Oh last things

All natural bodybuilding shows should have natural folk running them in my opinion.

I believe (which may not be true) that 99% of the athletes promoting products have never even used the said product. It all looks good in marketing and that’s business. For an example, if you want a true idea of how things work, I have had certain foods that I have had religiously and they have helped me through some rough craving times. I certainly don’t look anything like the athletes promoting the products. At least they have put me on the right path though, as they are a brilliant alternative to the junk I was eating.

And if folk are on steroids, it doesn’t matter if you use a little or a lot, steroids are steroids.


BodyPower 2016 Pro Show + Round up

Another year and another excuse to catch up with friends and to meet new ones. This year has been different for us as we went to went to watch the BodyPower Pro final on Friday night, which was excellent! Parking was free and right next to the venue (always a win) the crowd were buzzing and the atmosphere was great! There were a few exciting times such as Ronnie Coleman being in front row and having everyone sing him happy birthday, Kai Greene coming along and Phil Heath having a little banter with him and the crowd being a great support with banter and praise. I’ve linked a few videos below which may give you a better idea of how it went down.

Saturday was chilled with family and on the evening we went to the **new** Temple Gym (19 Kenyon Street, Jewellery Quarter, B18 6AR) This was a great night, mingling with new folk, catching up with friends, making future plans for a big meet up, experiencing the new building and soaking up the vibe. All the old and best equipment is now set up there, along with a seriously good sound system and some top of the range cardio equipment. You will understand when you visit the place. Follow them on instagram and you will see how some other big names have already been throwing their weight around. Temple Gym Instagram

Sunday was again different, as I decided to take my boy and my eldest daughter. I went with the mind set that I would follow them around and let it be all about them experiencing what I enjoy, as I’m sick to death of doing what they want to do. hehe. They really enjoyed it and it was definitely a good experience. I knew I wouldn’t be able to queue to meet the athletes due to the little one getting bored and with this in mind, we kept it casual and it was fun. I guess some folk may complain about every stand trying to out do the next stand by turning the music up as loud as possible, but this was great as it sounded crisp and it worked well. It’s when they have awful sound systems that makes me feel uncomfortable.

I’ve put some of the pictures up below to look back on as I do every year. It’s been a cracking weekend and I always look forward to this show and as far as shows go, it’s definitely the one I hope to attend every year. Great line up of athletes and just generally buzzing! I have so much more to add once I sort it out…



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End of Year 2015

End of 2012 can be found here…

End of 2013 can be found here…

End of 2014 can be found here…

new year





2015 has been a great year looking back. Here’s a recap for myself and a place for me to keep things a little more organised for my reference….








I never got around to doing a post on Dr Zaks gym. Perhaps I need to revisit there in 2016…



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