I started lifting weights at home when I was 16. My older brother (then 18) had been lifting for a year or so and made some pretty solid gains, so I wanted in. The only thing was, I felt too skinny to actually go to a gym, so I got some weights and basically lifted in my room for 6 months before getting my first membership. Looking back now I realise how stupid that was.
Pretty much all of them. I didn't train back at all for the first six months and barely trained legs for the first three years! I suppose the main thing I did wrong though was in regards to my nutrition. I made the common error of assuming that a 'healthy' diet was also a diet that would be conducive to obtaining the physique I wanted. Obviously it's going to help, but you really need to get a grasp of your TDEE and macronutrient requirements from the very beginning if you're going to optimise gains. That was something I had no idea about, and so I probably ate far more protein than necessary and generally far fewer calories, which resulted in it taking me a lot longer than it could have to reach the point I'm at now.
I personally think there are two things that drastically improve any individual's chances of staying on track. The first is sticking at it long enough to see your first bit of progress. That's the hardest part because for a few weeks, maybe even a month or two, you will be putting in a lot of effort with seemingly little reward. There's nothing to it, you just have to stick it out and have faith that what you're doing will pay dividends. Once you see that first bit of progress, whether it's fat loss, muscle gain or improved performance, it's inifinitely easier to stick with it and stay consistent. The second is allowing yourself adequate time off to relax and do something you enjoy doing (other than going to the gym). I think that if training is the only thing you do in your spare time, you're more likely to become one of these people who gets in a perpetual cycle of extremes, absolutely hammering the gym 7 days a week for a while then falling off the wagon and abandoning it for a couple of weeks, and so on and so forth.
Basically anything with a filthy bassline, mainly deep house. If it makes me pull a face like I've just stubbed my toe when the bass comes in, I'm all over it. Some examples on my playlist at the moment:
Joey Harmless - Act So Shady
Martin Ikin - What You've Done
MORRT - Be There (Rektchordz Remix)
Honestly, nothing. I'm literally thinking about something every waking second, but when I'm struggling to get out my last rep it's probably the only time that my mind is completely blank. No idea why that is.
I stick to a training programme that I'll write for myself in blocks of about 4-8 weeks. I generally stick with the same training split, but go through periods of differing rep ranges, volume and intensity. As for nutrition, I don't really plan much at all. I eat whatever I want for breakfast, check where my macros are, then have a little less freedom for my next meal and so on throughout the day. That results in me just having to tailor my final meal so that my macros are hit for the day. Aside from that, all I really consider is getting an adequate amount of fibre, plenty of micronutrients, and attempting to roughly evenly distribute my protein intake across my meals.
That's a tough question. Particularly because I don't think I've achieved anything that's anywhere near what I'm capable of yet. Right now I'm probably more proud of who I am as a person than any single achievement. I think I'm a pretty good dude, but my best is yet to come.
I attempt to do both. I bulk and cut, but try to stay as lean as possible whilst bulking. It's hard because it requires patience, and we're all so used to instant gratification, but really it's the only way to do it in my eyes. There's a natural limit to how fast one can gain muscle, and anything beyond that is fat, which means you're going to have to spend longer cutting. Cutting isn't much fun.
I don't do much cardio, but when I do it's HIIT, maybe once a week or so. I don't have the attention span for anything long distance.
I work on a 4 day training split. As I mentioned earlier, my sets/reps and rest periods vary depending on which phase of my programme I'm in at the time, but currently it looks something like this:
When dieting my macronutrient/caloric intake depends on my weight, how lean I am and how great the caloric deficit I'm in is at the time. Generally though I stick with foods high in satiety and low in calories. I pretty much stop eating rice, pasta etc and replace them with white potatoes. The difference in satiety when comparing a portion of each containing equal calories is astounding. I'm also an absolute fiend for 0% fat greek yogurt as I find that can really fill me up for fairly few calories, so I go through a fair amount of that. Aside from that I probably eat more fruit and veg when I'm on lower calories than I do when bulking. I have a voracious apetite so I've really got to make choices that my stomach will thank me for. Protein sources tend to be the standard chicken, eggs, whey, fish, greek yogurt & cottage cheese.
Year of birth: 1990