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Phil Matthews


Vital Statistics StartEnd
Weight: 95.3kg79.9kg
Body Fat: 29%10%
University student Phill Matthews had just turned nineteen when he realised it was time for a drastic body transformation.

Although always a skinny lad, over his later teen years he noticed the weight had begun to creep on which made him very uncomfortable in his own skin, something he attributes to basically eating too much and not doing enough worthwhile exercise.

Rick Keyworth - Before & After

It wasn't until a sunny holiday with his parents and girlfriend, however, that he realised just how much of a transformation he needed to make.

He told us that before this holiday, he was never afraid to take his top off in the sun, but after seeing himself in a few snaps, he decided to remain covered up.

This proved to be his motivation to dramatically alter his lifestyle and workout routine.

He researched carb cycling, restructured his workouts and completely overhauled his diet, and in just twelve weeks he dropped from 95.3kg (15st 1lb) to 79.9kg (12st 8lb) with just 10% body fat.

Soon his confidence had increased tenfold and he began to love the way he looked. Just one year later and Phill placed fourth in a junior body building competition!

Now, at twenty, he has his sights set on the international body building stage and is hoping to increase his muscle mass with the intent of competing again. He's also hoping to do all this whilst finishing his product design degree!

Here's his story…

Training Routine

Phil Matthews

Monday: Chest

  • Flat Bench Press 4 x 8
  • Incline Bench Press 4 x 8
  • Decline Bench Press 4 x 8
  • Flat Dumbbell Flys 4 x 15
  • Around the world 4 x 20
  • Evening – 1 Hour fast uphill walking

Tuesday: Back

  • Wide grip Lat pull down 4 x 12
  • Close Grip lat pull down 4 x 12
  • Bent over Barbell Row 4 x 8
  • Wide Grip Seated Row 4 x 15
  • Face Pulls 4 x 15
  • Straight Arm Pulldown 4 x 15
  • Deadlifts 4 x 8
  • Evening – 1 Hour fast uphill walking
Phil Matthews

Wednesday: Shoulders

  • Seated Dumbbell shoulder press 4 x 8
  • Upright Row 4 x 12
  • Lateral Raises 4 x 12
  • Front Raises 4 x 12
  • Bent Over Reverse Fly's 4 x 15
  • Shrugs 4 x 8
  • Evening – 1 Hour fast uphill walking

Thursday: Legs

  • Rear Squats 4 x 8
  • Front Squats 4 x 8
  • Walking Barbell Lunges 4 x 12
  • Leg Extension 4 x 15
  • Leg Curl 4 x 15
  • Standing Calve Raise Machine 4 x 15
  • Seated Calve Raises On Leg Press 4 x 15
  • Bodyweight Standing Calve Raises 4 x too failure
  • Evening – 1 Hour fast uphill walking
Phil Matthews

Friday: Arms

  • Standing Dumbbell Bicep curl 4 x 12
  • Weighted Dips 4 x 8
  • Barbell Bicep Curls 4 x 8
  • Seated Triceps extension 4x12
  • Concentration Curls 4 x 12
  • Single arm reverse grip triceps extension 4 x 12
  • Close Grip Preacher Curls 4 x 12
  • EZ Bar Skull Crushes 4 x 12
  • Evening – 1 Hour fast uphill walking

Saturday:

  • 1 Hour fast uphill walking
Phil Matthews

Sunday: Rest Day

Weekly Diet Planner

This was my diet plan at the time of the weight loss. I had two high and medium carb days, and 3 low days (one of these being my rest day).

Once a week on a high carb day I would have a cheat meal, which would normally consist of a main course and a dessert.

Interview with Phil Matthews

So tell us, why did you decide to embark on a transformation?

Phil Matthews - Before and After

To put it bluntly, I got to a point where I felt really uncomfortable with my body. I was skinny as a kid and never felt uncomfortable or awkward but one day I noticed how much weight I had put on. It was during a holiday with my parents and my girlfriend. Normally I'd have happily taken my top off in the sun but I noticed my face had gotten bigger and I became very conscious of the way I looked. I refused to take my top off and that was my wake up call.

I basically ate too much and although I was working out (to some degree!) I put on fat rather than muscle.

How did you begin your transformation?

Firstly, I sorted my diet. I watched the calories and did a lot of research into carbohydrate cycling – [A low/no carb diet with allotted periods of high or moderate carb consumption] – as well as increasing my cardio at night to burn through the fat I'd gained.

I'd never really done any cardio before this. I was a weights person, but although I wanted to loose fat, I didn't want to loose muscle so while I upped my cardio, I kept my weights the same.

How long did your transformation take?

From start to finish - twelve weeks. One year on from this and I was taking part in a junior body building competition in which I placed fourth!

…a transformation doesn't happen when you're just sitting around

What advice would you give someone who is maybe in your shoes but doesn't know where to begin?

Liquid Egg Whites

You need to be determined and commit to your cause. You must desire the change and want to achieve it, after all, what you put in is what you'll get out, a transformation doesn't happen when you're just sitting around.

Also, just get into the gym! If you're not too sure about what to do ask the fitness instructors and get as much advice as you can from the experts around you. You need to be prepared to take the first step so don't put it off until tomorrow, start today.

What three things would you tell people the focus on when starting a journey similar to yours?

  1. Consistency is key
  2. Diet is extremely important for all aspects of your training
  3. It's only through hard work will you achieve the results you desire.

What spurred you on during your transformation?

During my transformation I saw how much I changed, not just physically but mentally too. My confidence increased tenfold and I liked how my body looked. I also admired the physique of the body builder and wanted to achieve it so that's why I decided to continue on with my training.

What was the hardest part of your fitness journey?

Salmon & Nuts

Funnily enough it was staying consistent. I try to get up and in the gym relatively early and fit my training around my university studies.

Ok, and the most rewarding?

Seeing my reflection and witnessing how much of a change there was during those twelve weeks. That was definitely the most rewarding experience I had.

You've chatted about your physiological changes, but what about your personal life? What effect did/does your training have on it?

I'm not going to lie; it's been difficult especially being a university student. That's not to say I don't have a social life or go out for a pint with my mates occasionally but rather than thinking about the short term benefits I now look to the future and think long term. I think about my future and I don't want to go back to being uncomfortable with my body so I train hard and eat well to make sure that doesn't happen.

What was the most rewarding? Seeing my reflection and witnessing how much of a change there was during those twelve weeks.

So what's your long-term goal for your training?

I would like to compete in Body Building and step onto the international stage. I believe I can get there, it's completely within my reach, I just need to keep focused.

You've mentioned that diet is extremely important in achieving a fitness goal, how do you feel about supplementation?

Food should always come first but supplements are there to help you get to where you want to be. They're like the icing on the cake but without the right diet, there's no point in taking them.

What three whole foods do you rely on?

Chicken, Oats & Nuts
  1. Chicken breast
  2. Oats – I generally just enjoy eating them!
  3. Nuts for essential fats

Do you cater for a cheat day every once in a while?

I have a cheat meal (not a whole day!) once a week. I think if you have a whole day it's like taking one step forward and two steps back but by having just one meal it helps to keep you sane! It also gives you something to look forward to each week.

How do you motivate yourself on those lethargic gym days?

I don't get them often but on the occasions I do I find that music really helps get me through a session. It gets me in the mood to train and I also think about my long-term goal. This gives me the drive to push through.

start today don't wait until tomorrow

What are your three must do moves for an all over body workout?

Whey Protein & Olive Oil
  1. Press ups
  2. Dips
  3. Pull ups

The great thing about these moves is you can do them anywhere so there's no excuse not to workout.

Thank you for a great chat, is there anything else you'd like to add?

For everyone who is maybe in the same position as I was – start today don't wait until tomorrow. The sooner you begin your journey the quicker you'll get to where you want to be.

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.