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Gareth Young


Vital Statistics Before Current
Height 6’ 6” 6’ 6”
Weight 134kgs 99.4kgs
Bodyfat 36% + 14%

For a long time, 35-year-old Gareth Young convinced himself that he was happy with the 21 stone bulk on his 6’6” frame, but once his three kids arrived and he stopped being able to keep up, he knew that a change had to be made.

You see, Gareth was one of those guys who’d typically say each week, “I’ll start working out on Monday…”

That Monday took 15 years to arrive.

Since it did, however, Gareth has gone to great lengths to overhaul his lifestyle. He ditched the junk, hit the gym and lost a brilliant 3.5 stone in 9 months!

Then, in January 2016, he set himself a challenge to get “shredded” by the start of April, so he upped his commitment to his diet and workouts.

12 weeks later and Gareth slashed his body fat from 20% to 6% and dropped an incredible 20.5kg achieving his dream bod in the process!

Now, his sights are firmly set on the amateur bodybuilding stage…

Gareth - Before & After

Training Plan:

Diet is easily responsible for 70% of my results and the training has helped it along.

Key 1:  Fasted cardio every day.  I do 45mins steady pace (can always talk is a good measure) on my exercise bike that is parked in my lounge in front of the TV.  Only allow myself water, so this is done before Meal 1 above.

Weight training when cutting is more about time under tension, good quality reps and form.  Not slinging around weights or trying to kill yourself.  Check your ego at the door and don’t be shy lifting lighter weights but making every rep count.  I do this 4-5 times per week example:

  • Monday: Legs
  • Tuesday: Chest
  • Wednesday: Back & Abs
  • Thursday: Shoulders
  • Friday: Arms (and why not, Friday is Arms day…)

Saturday and Sunday I still get up and do my cardio above and the kids are up anyway.  We also try to get in a walk with the kids, some type of sporty activity or go to the park etc. active rest basically.

Meal Plan:

Each meal is spaced about 2.5hrs apart.
 
I have used some of Muscle Food’s Freshly Prepped Meals for these as I am a father of 3 and a Director in the company I work for, so VERY busy!  As a result, I like to either have everything prepped and ready so I don’t fall off the wagon. 

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Interview with Gareth Young

Hi Gareth, thank you for taking the time to chat with us! So tell us, why did you decide to undergo a transformation?

For a long time I’d convinced myself I was “happy” with being a big guy and being 6’ 6” meant I could carry a bit of weight. However, having two young kids certainly tests your fitness and being active with them was something I always wanted.

When I started struggling to keep up and everything became a chore, I decided to get my backside moving.

How did you go about it?

During the past 12 weeks I have been on a super strict diet focusing on a very controlled balance of carbs, protein and greens for fibre (the Tuna burgers are the best Meal Prep).

Having such a passion for ALL foods, though, the cravings got hold of me about half way through the challenge and made me doubt why I was even doing this.

Gareth before his Transformation

But, with good people around me supporting me and the ease of having food available from Muscle Food meant that I kept busy and ate what generally satisfied me.

What's been your biggest achievement to date?

The last 12 weeks have been the biggest change, I’ve lost:

  • 44.5lbs / 20.5kgs
  • Dropped from 20% body fat to 6%
  • 1.5" off my neck
  • 5" off my chest
  • 8.5" off my hips
  • 8" off my waist

How do you maintain your motivation?

I keep all of my ‘before’ pictures to compare my progress and remind me what happens if I let this slip. I have a wonderful wife who encourages me and I’m very lucky to have a good circle of friends who keep me focused and at the very least accountable.

What mistakes did you make at the start of your transformation and how did you fix them?

In the earlier days I found it too easy to have too many cheat meals and try to justify them with training, as I said this doesn’t work.

Before then I’d always say “Well I’ve had a busy / tough start to this week, so I’ll start Monday”…… Monday never came for 15yrs!

How has your passion for fitness affected your friends and family?

So many people want to know how I’ve done it, how can they get the results. They genuinely expect some miracle, quick fix. That’s not how this works and if it did, it wouldn’t be sustainable. You have to want it for yourself and FULLY commit to it.

They’ve seen my passion and my focus completely alter and I’m always asked for advice which is always the same “You’ve got to WANT this”. Very often they don’t want it enough ;-)

What top tips would you give to those wanting to start a transformation of their own?

Gareth before his Transformation
  1. 1.     Set a specific, measureable and timed goal. 
  2. 2.     Set down what you want to achieve and by when. 
  3. 3.     Seek advice from people who have been through the same
  4. 4.     Fully commit to making the change. 

I was fat for 15yrs so sticking to a strict plan for 12weeks isn’t that long (once you’ve done that 12 weeks I promise you won’t go back).

What's the best advice you've ever been given?

Diet:

“You’re a grown man, no one will stop you cheating or eating what you like.  BUT, would you rather finish this challenge knowing you’ve given it everything, or be sat there wondering ‘if only I hadn’t done this’ or ‘I wish I hadn’t done that’…  COMMIT!”

Training:

Donna after transformation image

Who has been your greatest inspiration?

Kris Gethin.

Also, I joined Bodyspace and the people on that forum are fantastic and become you fitfam… great for motivation and inspiration.

Gareth before his Transformation

If we were to open your fridge today - what would we find there?

A LOT of:

Favourite cheat meal?

Pizza.

Must have Muscle Food goodies?

Top 3 favourite exercises and why?

I’m all about “time under tension” slow and perfect form:

  • Pec deck fly – slow and big squeeze at the top.  Great to pump out the chest
  • Low pulley row – full stretch to flare the lats then straighten lower back and squeeze your elbows back at the top of the motion
  • Super/set close grip EZ bar bicep curl with tricep v-bar pushdown – just feed your ego with this one, everyone loves a good arm pump!

Favourite body part?

Arms or legs.

And the one you think still needs a bit of work?

Back and mid/lower abs.

After His Transformation

Cardio – oh yes, or no way?

ABOSULETLY – no.1 key to my success has been fasted cardio. 

First thing in the morning, before breakfast I complete 45 mins at a steady pace (i.e. always able to talk) on my exercise bike in front of the TV.  The time flies.

What's next for you?

To continue building more muscle and achieving some more personal best records.

How do you find the time to juggle a busy family life, work and gym?

Everyone is different so you make time, not excuses. 

I have 3 kids (10, 6 and 13 weeks) a full time, very mentally intense job.  Instead of “chilling out in front of the TV for 3hrs in the night, get your ass to the gym I promise you’ll feel more chilled after a good work out. 

Also, go to bed on time and get up earlier to fit in your fasted cardio – I thought this was going to make me more tired but it actually gave me more energy (on top of my healthy diet).

What's your secret to losing those last few stubborn pounds?

Diet! Chicken or Turkey; lean no fat, clean carbs; sweet potato, brown rice. Ditch the dairy and sugar.

What's next for you?

Build a little muscle and maybe an amateur bodybuilding competition end of the year

Gareths Three Year Transformation
Muscle Food Final Thoughts

Every transformation story featured on Muscle Food outlines that a good diet and a good workout plan are essential to achieving the results you desire. All transformation stories, exercise routines and diet plans are provided by the customer and have not been checked by a nutritionist or doctor. Results may vary for different individuals.