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|Sam Watt Personal Training||
After a few sets of no less than 15 reps on the squat and the same again on the leg press it was time to up the ante and really put my quads to the test. So I supersetted with 3 sets of the hack squat with a narrow stance (to bring out my outer sweep development) immediately followed by dumbbell lunges (leaning forward to place more emphasis on quads rather than hips). Give it a go for an insane quad pump and to test your ability to handle pain!
Click here - For online nutrition/exercise plans
With just 11 days before I compete in my second bodybuilding contest - the NPA British Finals (yikes!), I'm very happy with both my muscularity and conditioning. I've worked very hard on my weak points and that included a lack of definition in my quads. Therefore, today was my second 2 hour leg workout in 4 days (I don't advocate this for everyone but my body and immune system can handle this). So the workout went like this..........
Seated Leg Curl (4 sets, 15 reps)
nice slow tempo, fully contracting hamstring especially at the end of range
Prone Leg Curl (4 sets, 12 reps, last one being a drop set)
Stiff-legged Deadlift on shrug machine - (4 sets of 13)
nice deep stretch, pausing at bottom of lift to force the hamstrings to work harder
Leg Press - 45 degree (4 sets, 20 reps - 10 wide stance, 10 close stance)
these are a killer but has really helped with my quad outer-sweep development
Barbell Squat (Pyramiding up 200kg x 13)
the is the heaviest weight I've squatted for this prep, the weight felt light - so I thought "why not?"
Hack Squat (4 sets, 12 reps)
pause at bottom to reduce any momentum to work quads harder
Barbell Lunges (2 sets, 24 steps with 60kg)
leaning torso slightly more forward than usual to place more emphasis on quads rather than glutes
Leg Extension (5 sets, 15 reps - last being a dropset)
....followed by some 3 different glute exercise. This is my last heavy leg session before the British, I'll do a light session next week. Feeling very good and can't wait to get onto that stage in 11 days!
I was happy with my strength levels during my back workout today so I decided to go for a heavier than usual deadlift as my final exercise. It felt pretty comfortable, so I think I may push it up to 300kg over the next few weeks as long as my contest dieting doesn't weaken me too much
I constantly see people at the gym trying out funky new exercises that they either got from magazines or friends. Funnily enough the people I see with the best bodies tend to stick with the good old fashioned basic exercises that have worked and stood the test of time. Don't waste your time constantly trying out the latest fad exercises, simply stick to exercises we all know that works, keep perfect form and try to train past the pain barrier on all your working sets to get real results!
Though if you reach a plateau in your training, then by all means switch up some of your training or exercises.
Need to develop more overall shoulder mass? Try this shoulder-press exercise on the Smith machine. Ensure the bar comes to dead stop at the bottom of every rep to fully engage the deltoids. I used roughly 90kg here for 3 sets of 8 reps.
If you want to make the exercise a little harder - don't lock out the bar, this will keep more constatnt tension on the shoulders.
Just had a quick leg session with the emphasis to try to improve my general size and outer sweep mass. I've altered my training style to include a lot more reps and use slightly less weight. Both seems to be coming along nicely. Sam
I'd just like to say a major thank you for the overwhelming support I seem to be receiving from all quarters for my novice body-building performance tomorrow. From friends, gym members, the NPA group and random strangers!
This journey started in February 2013, with a plan to compete at the end of 2014 to give me enough time to gain enough muscle and improve my physique. Then 16 weeks ago I made a snap decision to compete rather than wait for the perfect moment.
Well the moment of truth has arrived and I think I've prepared well, worked very hard and made sacrifices. I've also had great support and invaluable advice from champion body-builders Akin Fagbohun, Dominic Haley and Ricky Moore - thanks guys.
I'll post results as soon as I can and wish me luck!!!
For those of you who were enquiring about when I'll be competing - here are the details.
It's on Sunday 25th May @ Huddersfield Sports Centre, HD1 1TW. The show starts at 1pm but I'll be on stage in the Novice Heavyweight class at approximately 3pm.
Tickets are £14 on the door
Just 4 days to go with the show on Sunday......eeeeek!!!
Today I completed my final chest, shoulder and traps workout after doing legs and back on Monday and Tuesday. I've been re-carbing this week to refill my muscles with glycogen after 2.5 months of depletion. You can see that my face looks a bit gaunt from all the weight that I've lost (20lbs), I've managed to achieve 'the look of death' which I was going for, this probably means I got my dieting right. Though I don't recommend this for my average personal training clients!!
My final training session is on Thursday then I'll be putting my final preparations in place but trying to relax up until the big day.
BLOG: 2 Weeks out
BLOG: 3 Weeks out
With 10 days to go I planned to go no higher than 160kg on squat today but ended up doing 200kg for 12 reps (my best for a while) - I guess the powerlifter in me is not happy squatting sub-200kg per session. I'm very happy to still be handling these sort of weights so close to the show to keep hold of my hard earned muscles. Adrenaline rather than the carbohydrates must be giving me the energy to keep going!
I then moved onto to couple of sets of 50kg lunges for 30 steps and hack squats followed by leg curls. After that I did one hour of cardiovascular training with 20 minutes of high intensity cycling included.
I'm happy with my condition as I've prepared just right for the show (so far!). So I'm looking to just coast into the show now - so it's gentle training, resting up and carb-loading from next week
Click link for - Online Exercise and Nutrition plans
BLOG Update - 2 Weeks Out
BLOG Update - 3 Weeks Out
BLOG Upddate - 4 Weeks Out, My 15 month transformation
Some people have questioned whether I have legs or not - as my wheels have never been on public display before, so I thought it was about time I got them out! The outer sweep could be bigger but the definition is coming on nicely as I drop body fat (another 2lbs in the last week).
8 weeks ago I as 106kg now I'm 97.5kg - that's 1 stone 5lbs lost in that period. I've tightened up my diet from last week - so calories which were between 3300 and 3600 calories is now a strict 2,800 and carbs which were between 250g to 300g carbs is now 210g.
As I've not had a single cheat meal or refeed day in 8 weeks I've decided today is the day to treat myself and increase my carbs upto 400g then it's back to the strict regime tomorrow. If you want results then sacrifices need to be made but I believe it's all worth it in the end whether you're competing, trying to build muscle or lose weight. Now pass me that tub of Hagen Daaz and litre bottle of Pepsi!
Link to 4 Week Update
When I decided to leave my career in Information Technology behind and pursue my dream of becoming a personal trainer, I thought what better way to learn about the body than to transform my own. I decided at the beginning of 2013 that I would enter a body-building competition some time in 2014, that day is nigh....4 weeks and counting to the NPA Yorkshire, on 25th May @ Huddersfield Sports Centre.
It's been an enjoyable, educational and disciplined journey as my knowledge has increased several fold with regards to how the body/muscles work, nutrition to build mass and lose weight. Also, how far would I be prepared to push myself to the limit to achieve my goals as I'd be expecting from my own clients.
Over the 13 months, I've trained 4-6 times per week, every single week without fail except for when I missed 10 days of training in December due to the flu virus. In February 2013 I weighed 93kg, September 2013 - 101kg, January 2014 - 106kg and April 2014 - 99kg. I put on this size due to training hard but in the correct manner, eating between 4,500 to 5,000 calories a day (even when not hungry) and doing this consistently over time. No short cuts.
I'll be looking to transform myself quite a bit yet from the last picture. Watch this space!
With my body low on calories and carbs, feeling lethargic, just completed a full 45 minute intense back workout and only started training deadlifts over the last 4 weeks after a 4 month lay-off......I decided what a better time to attempt my heaviest deadlift since my powerlifting days!
Needless to say I'm very happy with my strength and performance. The keys to performing this lift correctly, is to keep that bar as close to your body as possible, keep your chest up and keep your back as flat as an ironing board.
Maybe a powerlifting competition is on the cards after all this body-building malarkey!
Link to my 240x5 raw squat a month ago
Claire came to see me just 3 weeks ago with aim of losing weight especially around her mid-section, tone up generally and to see results fast. She was doing a couple of 5km runs a week but no resistance training. I explained that if she followed my weight training, high intensity cardio & nutrition plans - designed specially for her and worked very hard she would expect to see fantastic results in less than a month. After our first session, which was a leg/butt workout - she was hardly able to walk for 3 days but came back for more....sorry Claire!
Our first training session was 3 weeks ago, she sent me these pics this evening, 19th April 2014, that's some transformation!
After seeing these results, she's even more motivated to stick to the exercise and nutrition programs and to keep on improving further. Well done Claire!!
Click link for AIJA's 3 WEEK TRANSFORMATION also
Click link for ONLINE TRAINING and NUTRITION PROGRAMS
Dominic Hayley randomly came over and took this pic as I was performing cable flyes today. Didn't realise I looked so scary - with only a face a mum could love!!!
LIKE if you like
As the competition gets closer I've stepped up my cardio to ensure I maintain a calorie deficit to keep burining the fat. I've now dropped down from 106kg to 99kg in about 8 weeks. As the weather was gorgeous and I had some spare hours in between clients, I went for a 15 mile bike ride down the Leeds-Liverpool canal - which took around 1.5 hours.
I calculated that I burned approximately 1,100 calories but listening to Drake's album - "Nothing Was the Same" the time flew by. My next cardio session will be some sort of interval training to max out the heart rate and burn calories post-exercise
LIKE link if you like!
You know the cutting diet is getting serious when the only 'cheat' item on the grocery list is the tin of pineapple!! You should have the seen the funny looks I was getting as I was checking this lot out - surrounded by all the other ready meals, no veg/fruit and sugary/high fat foods. I felt like I was the weird one!!!
I'm happy with body fat percentage 6 weeks out from show. I started cutting about 5 weeks ago and lost 5kg by dropping my calories, adjusting my macro-nutrient levels as well as performing some cardio. I'll be looking for the the same rate of fat loss by tweaking these numbers to get my body fat percentage much lower and get extremely peeled for the competition.
If you like these updates, then please LIKE page!
My client of 4 weeks Becki sent me this message today. Though new to the gym environment I've pushed her hard and she has stuck very impressively to my nutrition plan, now the results are coming after just one month. Another satisfied client - well done Becki!!!
I thought it was funny today when a gym member declared that I MUST be on steroids because my body has changed so much in the last few weeks and it looks like I've put on about a stone. So he was a bit surprised when I told him I've actually LOST 1/2 stone. I also explained that I haven't been taking anything except for less food and doing more cardio!!
After that he then asked for a free diet and training plan, cheeky bugger - though I found it amusing :-)
After squatting heavier at the weekend with 240kg x 5, I decided to also go heavier on the benchpress before I lose some of my strength due to cutting. I was happy with four reps as I had inclined dumbbell pressed heavy in the previous exercise. Just remember - putting on muscle ain't only about doing 10-12 reps, get some heavy sets in too!
I made a video of top 5 female mistakes at the gym it's only right I do the same for the guys.
Click HERE for the top 5 female mistakes
Sam Watt - Champion personal trainer and nutrition advisor