This is my typical Off-season training split
Usually my session last 60min - 90min training once per day. On the lead up to competitions I may add in extra sessions if I feel I need to improve on particular areas
Pre-contest I switch to the following split below.
|Chest / Triceps||Rest||Back / Biceps||Legs||Rest||Shoulders|
|Chest / Triceps|
|Barbell Bench Press||3 x 8 -12|
|Seated Chest Press (Hammer Strength)||
3 x 8
4 x Failure
4 x 12 -15
|Bent Over Cable Flyes||
3 x 15 -20
|Skull Crushers||4 x 10 -15|
|Tricep Pushdown||8 x 10 (Pyramid Sets)|
|Back / Biceps|
|Barbell Bent Over Row||
4 x 6 - 10
|Seated Cable Rows||
4 x 10
6 x 8 -15
4 x 10-15
6 x 8-12
|Straight Barbell Curl||
6 x 8-12
|Cable Bicep Curls||
4 x 16
|4 x 10-15|
4 x 20 (10 Each Leg)
6 x 8-12
|Leg Extension||10 x 10 (10sec rest between sets)|
|Hamstring Curl||4 x 8-15|
|Hack Squats||6 x 10-15|
|Standing Hamstring Curl||
4 x 10-15
|DB Shoulder Press||
5 x 8-12
|Military Press||5 x 6-10
|Lateral Raise / Bent Over Lateral Raise||4 x 10-15 (Super Set)|
5 x 8-15
4 x 10-12
For me, muscle size and condition is my main priority. Strength is nice but it’s not my main focus. I prefer to focus on getting the maximum pump from a workout, using controlled and concentrated movements, isolating every muscle contraction and this is not possible when doing your max weight every time. However, I do enjoy throwing a few heavy workouts into the mix every now and then to keep my strength up and to add some variety into my training.
My personal preference is to use the stairmaster as my main source of cardio, doing a low intensity workout to reduce muscle breakdown but keep the cardio up. If a stairmaster isn’t available, I would do some sprints, short high intensity bursts for about 10 - 15 mins
My favourite alternative cardio is to do tractor tyre flips - they give a great burn, uses the full body and also helps build your explosive strength. Also, who doesn’t enjoy throwing around a massive tyre?
Bench press - Probably most men’s favourite exercise. For me, my chest is one of my strongest areas so of course, I love to work it! The bench activates my chest muscles at the start of my workout, gives a great pump and gets me into the zone for the rest of my workout, filled with blood and ready to smash the session.
Military Press - An excellent upper body exercise that activates the core as well as the shoulders and arms.
Squats - Awesome lower body exercise that should be a staple part of anyone's leg workout. Again, it activates and strengthens the core, your legs of course get an incredible workout and for me, going low and deep is the best way to maximise the contraction and get the most out of each rep!
I don’t strictly follow any particular programs or intensity techniques to be honest. I go to the gym, I get stuck into my sets, keep my rest times low between sets (15-30 seconds ideally) to keep the muscles activated and stave off fatigue and cramp.
Obviously, my workouts aren’t always the same, so sometimes I’ll throw in some “HIIT” sessions to mix it up - these do help to add another dimension to the workout, giving my body another challenge and get the heart racing.
My back was and to a degree is still my biggest weakness. When I was younger and less experienced, I would try to lift too heavy with less than strict form, not maximising the reps and so on. I made the same mistakes a lot of other guys do which was to focus too much on the front - chest, biceps, shoulders - the posing muscles - and didn’t worry too much about my back, until I hit around 17/18 and realised the importance of having a well proportioned overall physique.
I have also recently had a back injury, injuring my lower erector spinae due to a fallen arch in my right foot which caused an overall imbalance - one day during squats, it just clicked and that held me back considerably - I was in mid contest prep at the time as well!
The adjustments I have had to make as a result of my injury were to firstly rest, but then when I recovered I had to drop the weight and added isolated movements to help build muscle density. I use slow and controlled rep movements with static holds for maximum contraction.
In terms of nutrition, my diet definitely becomes more relaxed in the offseason and I become a lot more sociable again! I still aim to get my macros in each day, but if I want to have something else like a burger or ice-cream, or a mountain of chocolate then I’ll have it! I still have to have a life at the end of the day, but I do it in moderation so as not to destroy everything I work for.
In terms of bodyfat percentages, in the offseason I currently like to maintain about 10% give or take. If there were more opportunities in Northern Ireland, then I’d most likely sit around the 7-8% mark to be able to get myself photo-ready in a shorter space of time.
Daily protein intake, at least 1 gram per lb is essential. I always tell clients you dont eat for the flavour, you eat the healthy foods for the benefits of the body. I endlessly hear ‘i cant eat this because i dont like it’ my response is, man up, eat it and succeed!
Meal 1: 8 whole eggs + 100g (uncooked weight oats)
Meal 2: 100g potato + 200g mince + handful of veg (brocolli / aspargus etc)
Meal 3: 300g chicken + 80g (uncooked weight rice) + handfull of veg
Meal 4: Cheat Dinner (chinese / gorment burgers / roast dinner)
Meal 5: 8 whole eggs + 100g (uncooked weight oats)
Meal 1: 5 Whole eggs + 40g (Uncooked weight) of porridge oats
Meal 2: 40g whey protein + 30g flaxseed
Meal 3: 200g Lean Fish/ Turkey + 80g (uncooked weight) brown rice
Meal 4: 40g whey protein + 30g flaxseed
Meal 5: 200g Steak/ Salmon + 100g sweet potato + green vegetables (broccoli, asparagus, green peas)
Meal 6: 150g Tuna + 30g Cottage Cheese
I tend to find within the first 2 weeks of the new prep or diet, the body is still used to the bigger portions and will be hungry after a meal. I dont increase my portion or eat more, i simply make myself busy and it will distract me from the hunger. Theres no magic cure, everything is natural and theres always ways of achieving.
This is a tough one… I love a MASSIVE, fat burger with fries, onion rings, the WORKS!
I have recently been fortunate enough to become part of the 5% Nutrition Team as a sponsored athlete. Of the 5% supplements my favourite of the range would be:
All of the supplements are vital in terms of recovery from workouts.
Too be honest, I like to keep everything simple. You can not go wrong with simple clean eating, experiment and make healthy alternatives to change up the menu of plain foods.
IIFYM is good for some people I guess, but I would rather go old school, eat clean fresh natural food and make results that way. I can notice changes immediately over the period of 1 week when I start dieting. People say because i'm young my ‘metabolism’ is super fast, or that i'm a genetic freak. I just call it a gift!
Simply a good friend of mine who competes was in my college course for personal training, and he got me started when i approached him about bodybuilding and fitness competitions.
I then competed in my first local show ‘NIFMA’ simply for the experience of being on stage. I ended up winning overall and then got addicted and wanted to take it further. Since then I have been hooked into the fitness scene and wanted to be even better once I knew I had potential. As each year goes on, im learning more and more about the industry and setting new goals that I want to achieve.
Throughout the past year I have noticed massive changes and only being 21 its starting to look hopeful that I could actually get somewhere in life with my fitness due to the feedback and fan base I have managed to build so quickly.
In 5 years:
I would like to see myself known worldwide as a leading men's physique athlete and follow the path of the current athletes in the game. Jeff Seid is a prominent figure and I would like to achieve something similar. It is important to have your name out there at an early age as an athlete, but I also want to take on worldwide roles with online personal training, and continue to grow my reputation as an ambassador for Rich Piana 5% Nutrition. I currently have no sponsorship deal but I have been approached by small companies. I am happy enough to wait till a company that we can both help eachother approaches.
Another goal by 5 years is to be on the IFBB Olympia stage competing with the best. I would also love to be working with a top fitness modelling agency, taking on different photoshoot opportunities.
Everyone needs a role model. When I first started i didn't know many people in the industry. Now as i have been around for the past year i would say Ullises JR has the physique I admire and gives me something to aim for. He is a true genuine athlete and an inspiration.
I actually dont have time to follow many sports here as I am always on the move. If I lived in America I would happily follow American football. A sport i would have loved to play as a kid, but living in the UK, I never had the opportunity.
I have recently returned to some social ‘Ten pin bowling’ and shooting to keep distracted from the whole fitness life. Living and breathing it all the time can get tedious and sometimes boring which takes the fun out of it, so i like to change it up and take on different sports I enjoy. Eventually I will take on kick boxing as its a sport I love.
I say to people 'Only you can make it happen, no one else can do it for you. If you believe in yourself then aim to be the best you can’
I want everyone to know, that just because I am 21 and doing all this doesn't mean I don't have a life outside of competing.I still socialize nearly every weekend even during a contest prep, I just don't drink alcohol.
I like to be very humble and its what I am known for back home. I compete because I love the sport and I hope everyone can see how much it means to me and I love hearing all the positive feedback and comments. Everything on my social media is seen and respected!
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