If there ever was a testimonial that keeping a healthy lifestyle “WILL” save your life, and help you recover quickly, this is it. I have had the pleasure of training Ian for the last year and have yet to meet a more dedicated and hard working person. Towards the end of last year his whole life was turned upside down. Here is Ian’s inspiring story…….
I’ve always kept a training diary and that’s how I know that on 25th September last year I weighed 10 stone and 9 pounds with 10.5% body fat. I’d had a little bit of pain in my stomach that morning but was feeling pretty strong and trained with weights just like normal. At the time I had recently deadlifted 140 kilos which was just over twice my body weight, was using 27.5 k dumbbell for concentration curls and could throw out 15 dips whilst wearing a 30k weight around my waist. I trained most days and had a personal training session with Barry every Saturday morning where we would work on big volumes of reps.
After my weights session I decided to do a quick run and that’s where the trouble started. At seven minutes in, that little bit of pain and become absolute agony, so I walked a bit and it went away but if I tried to run I was in agony. It turned out that I had a twist in my bowel which was nothing to do with the exercise I did and talking to the consultant later, does ‘just happen.’
I spent ten days in hospital and underwent a pretty major surgery to remove the twist, resulting in a ten inch scar right through my abs. When I got home in early October I was down to just 9 stone 11 pounds. I then spent three months not being able to go to the gym but after a few weeks could walk a lot and for the last six weeks was able to start doing some light abs work as the biggest risk is the scar splitting and strong abs will help to prevent that.
And so it was on 2nd January I started to get myself back into training. I measured everything before I started and these were my stats:
Weight : 11 stone 3 pounds
Body fat: 15%
Waist: 31.5 inch
Chest: 38 inch
Upper arms: 13.5inch
Forearms: 12 inch
Neck: 15.5 inch
Thighs: 21 inch
Calves: 14 inch
I knew that I had to just keep on keeping on and all would be good in time. I had a bit of a plan that I wanted to be back where I was by December when I would turn fifty.
When I started back I couldn’t really do a pull up or a dip and I reckon I could lift between half and two thirds of my previous weights on most exercises.
I began a programme that worked Back and Biceps, Chest and Legs and Shoulders and Triceps with abs and calves being worked each day. Effectively I started on drop sets with quite a lot of reps and on the second set I would then drop the weight and keeping going and on the third set drop the weight again and keep going. It all felt like a battle. I would mix it up with German Volume sets of two exercises for ten reps and doing each for ten sets with a minute rest between each set. I was taking on board about 1.2 grammes of protein per pound of body weight each day which was, if anything, the biggest challenge. I would supplement this each day with a bit of running for cardio. Each Saturday I would do my personal training session with Barry which was superb motivation; I wanted to make progress each week.
Well it’s now the end of February and how far have I come in two months! I am back to using exactly the same weights as before my illness with the only exception being the deadlift, where I am just being a bit cautious as it’s always felt like an exercise where I am trying as hard as I can and I’m still protecting my scar. But I clearly need to set new targets to reach before December!
I have measured everything again and pleasingly the things I wanted to go up, have, and the things I wanted to go down, have as well.
Weight : 11 stone
Body fat: 10%
Waist: 30 inch
Chest: 40 inch
Upper arms: 14.5 inch
Forearms: 13 inch
Neck: 14 inch
Thighs: 21 inch
Calves: 15 inch
I’ve managed a snowboarding trip and have another coming, and now I’m building new targets for the future. Obviously I want to deadlift twice my weight again, but also want to just push it all as much as I can.
I suppose there are a few morals to my story. I am sure being reasonably fit helped me get back to good health again, age is not an excuse for not trying as hard as you can to achieve whatever you want, training diaries are useful to track progress and motivate and life is full of surprises!
I am very grateful for all the support I have had. Barry is great at motivating me to keep on pushing and squeeze out that extra set. The 0630 training buddies are great motivators and a great laugh as well and keep me turning up day after day. Finally, Anthea is as always a star and so patient as I head to the gym day in day out and works hard there herself when her busy life allows her to.
I wish Ian the best of luck for the future and will continue to push him every Saturday morning to reach his full potential.
This is Ian’s workout from this morning it gives you an idea of how far he has come in a very short time.
With only 15 secs rest between each set duration 40-45 minutes.
8×8 Pull Ups with 10kg plate around waist
8×8 Spider Curls
8×8 Hammer Curls
8×8 Reverse Curls
8×8 Close grip dips with 10/15kg plate around his waist
8×8 Cable 2 arm tricep pulls
8×8 Scull Crushers
*8 sets of 8 might be the most effective set and rep combination ever developed for rapidly building muscle fiber size while simultaneously shedding body fat. It is called the “honest workout ” because of the pure muscle fiber size that can be achieved on it.