If you think UP’s transformation results are ‘too good to be true’, think again.
Iain found out for himself just how real the results are after making this jaw-dropping transformation in just 12 weeks
The 30-year-old Scot was blown away by what he managed to achieve in the first five weeks alone after halving his body fat down to a shredded 7%.
After first doubting what was possible at UP, Iain has gone from strength to strength and built a truly enviable physique in 12 weeks.
“Within the first few weeks I was seeing results that I didn’t think would be possible,” he explains.
“Looking at the split (image) of me at five weeks I was at 14% body fat and I dropped to about 7% body fat. If you had shown me that photo before I started training, I would have paid the money immediately and said ‘just do it.’
“That’s how big a transformation you can get after just five weeks. Obviously, you get more from that once you take that point forward. It gets you hooked. You want to just keep going.”
Senior manager Iain had struggled to get the body he wanted previously after trying CrossFit back in Edinburgh and strength training on his own.
But with the expert guidance of UP’s elite personal trainers he was able to maximise his results in an astonishingly short space of time.
He’s already taking on another 12-week training block to take his strength and muscle mass to an even higher level.
Here Iain explains why his transformation was so effective, the key things he has learned and what has made the difference in finally getting the results he always wanted:
Where were you at fitness-wise before you started your UP transformation?
It was just after my 29th birthday and I used to be quite fit in my younger days – I used to swim for Scotland when I was a teenager.
In my twenties I partied a lot – it was great, but as I was approaching 30 I thought ‘I need to get myself back in shape’.
I did Crossfit in Edinburgh. I was pretty weak at first so I did see some success in the first nine months.
I spent a year working on my own and managed to get pretty fat on a bulk, then tried a cut and it just took ages to lose anything. I just ended up where I didn’t really have the body that I wanted.
I also had a sore back from deadlifting and squatting.
It was just utter frustration. There was so much information online and none of it seemed to work. I didn’t know what to do. I knew I had the discipline. But I needed someone to tell me what the hell to do.
I contacted UP to do the online sessions because I sort of knew what I was doing. But then I worked with Matt and went through the squats and deadlifts just in that first hour and immediately realised ‘I really just need to do this’
I learned so much even in that first hour. It blew my mind. So I said I’ll do 12 weeks and I’ll stop and I’ll do the online programme and touch base with Matt once a month.
I ended up doing a second 12 weeks which I’m just a couple of weeks into.
I’ve already agreed to do another 12-week block after this.
What was it about UP that inspired you to come?
It was a Hail Mary. I saw some adverts online and didn’t believe them. People were just saying ‘It’s impossible for this to happen in 12 weeks. That’s two years of training. This is all lies.’
But I thought maybe these guys really are getting these results.
Maybe it’s not just the standard over-blown nonsense you see in the fitness industry.
I thought why not give it a go. So I thought I’d do the online training and just do a few sessions.
But that first hour…there was just so much information!
I had had a sore back for the best part of a year from squats and deadlifts with the weights I was working at. Then came in here, worked at the same weight and went away without any pain in my back.
That’s what got me – I thought I really need to do this for myself, if not for my back.
When did you first start seeing results?
It was quickly for me. Within the first few weeks, I was seeing results that I didn’t think would be possible.
Looking at the split (image) of me at five weeks I was at 14% body fat and I dropped to about 7% body fat. If you had shown me that photo before I started training, I would have paid the money immediately and said ‘just do it.’
That’s how big a transformation you can get after just five weeks.
Obviously, you get more from that once you take that point forward. It gets you hooked. You want to just keep going.
What’s it like seeing the results of what you’re doing in the kitchen and in the gym getting better week after week?
It makes it all worth it. Taking that frustration away and actually being able to see results means it is so much easier just to keep going.
There will always be gym sessions you don’t want to do, like on Friday nights.
You come in and do your hour then next week you’re like ‘I’m looking a bit better. I’ve lost a little bit more body fat.’
When you see the before and after pictures it’s a constant reminder that this is working.
I think before you train here you can feel like you’re just spinning your wheels and that’s even more frustrating because you’re not seeing any of the progress with what feels like the same amount of effort.
Had you struggled to get results before you did your UP transformation?
Strength came okay in the beginning, but that was coming from a position of being weak. But you don’t start seeing the results that you want to see. Everyone wants that Hollywood body, right? Have big delts, big arms and you want to see the six pack. But I just wasn’t getting anywhere near it.
When you look at other people who were training around you and the coaches, they weren’t either.
In hindsight you’re thinking ‘I’m training with these people but they don’t really have what you’re looking to get.’
You come here and they’re all huge and looking pretty trim all the time. You think ‘these guys obviously know what they’re doing then’ because they’re in such good shape.
What things have you learned that have helped you progress so much?
Proper technique. That’s such a broad statement. But proper technique across all the exercises. Really keeping the shoulders down and locking the back and core in on a lot of exercises. Then actually understanding what you’re doing on one exercise and how it relates to another exercise.
There’s such a common thread and Matt has helped tie that all together so I can feel how the body is in every position – mind-muscle connection.
Actually learning to feel the muscle that’s working and knowing exactly which muscle should be working and how to hit that muscle in several different ways and feel the difference between them, that was a massive thing.
The diet is always the biggest thing. How to cycle carbs properly; timing of the carbs; the actual amount of calories I should be taking in and measuring them, then adjusting as you go on – that was all very new to me.
How does the training at UP compare to anything you’ve done before?
It’s fair to say they kill you here. I remember seeing a picture of Joe Warner after his first session lying on the floor somewhere with his head in his hands.
I prepared for that at the start, but I thought after 12 weeks I’d be fairly used to it. Then you get to the end of the 12 weeks and you’ve still got your head in your hands thinking ‘God! I’m dying!’ And I think it’s worse than it was at the beginning.
They work incredibly hard here. There’s absolutely no let-up.
When you think you can’t be pushed anymore, they will push you past that point.
How do you feel leaving the gym after a hard session?
Initially shattered. But it’s in the 45 minutes after the session when you get the ‘high’.
You get that endorphin rush. Then you get the ‘I just did a PB on my deadlift of 140kg’.
This was never going to happen for me before. I was on 100kg before I came here and I thought that was good. Now I’m doing 140kg and aiming to get 160kg or 170kg by the end of the year.
When you hit those numbers, you’re like ‘that is 50% more than I was doing before’ at a lower body weight as well.
How did you find the diet and did you see real benefits from it?
It is a challenge. The first two weeks were the hardest.
It’s just getting the routine. You’re trying to find foods and meals that you like, which must also fit in with the macros that you’ve got.
Day to day you get into the habit of what you need to eat for breakfast. It makes it easier.
I don’t have to think about what I’m having for breakfast – I know I’m having an omelette.
I have so many different varieties of omelettes now and I appreciate all the flavours in those omelettes now. You know what you’re having for lunch and you can find variety in there, it just takes time to get in the habit of it.
What has that diet done for your performance, energy levels and sleep?
I definitely feel more alert. I definitely get better sleep. I’m more balanced and less stressed. It’s the whole thing. It’s not just about the gym training. It’s not just about the diet. That’s the whole package.
The first two weeks you do have slightly lower energy. Maybe taking those carbs away initially is a shock to the system but then you settle into and bounce back better to a higher level that before.
Have you learned a lot about training, nutrition and your own body?
It’s been a huge education – and on-going.
It’s not like you come for the first two weeks and then you learn everything and you can do it. It’s constantly evolving with more questions.
But rather than searching and spending hours on the internet just looking for answers you just ping a note to Matt (personal trainer) and ask him for the answer which makes it infinitely easier. It beats Google every time!
What’s been the biggest surprise?
The biggest surprise for me has been the diet and managing to drop the body fat so quickly.
That’s the thing for me that has been such a stark contrast to the time before I started at UP. I’d always had a quick metabolism and it was so frustrating to be in a situation where I couldn’t seem to get my weight down because it was never something I seemed to struggle with.
Then suddenly it was almost impossible. So coming here and being able to get that nutrition nailed so quickly… I was showing a couple of the guys from work the before and after pictures after five weeks and they were like mouths open ‘Oh my God!’
You lose a lot of weight from your face. A lot of the guys have heard of UP already so they’re always asking questions; they’re intrigued and they’d quite like to do it themselves. There’s a lot of questions as to how realistic is this stuff. A lot of people worry about the same thing – do people actually get these results?
To people in the office I can show them the pictures and say ‘Yes, they really do get these results.’
How would you say you’ve changed since you first started?
I tend to work quite long hours with the firm and this has given me a hobby and something else to concentrate on outside of work.
It’s given me a healthier work-life balance which is something I’ve never had since my career began. That’s the biggest personal change – actually doing something for myself.
What I really like about that is there’s almost a direct correlation between the amount of effort you put in and the results you get. Sometimes it doesn’t always feel like that in fitness. But I know when I put the work in, I get results off the back end of it because I’m doing the right things now. That’s quite a nice feeling.
What have been the final results you achieved?
Massive weight loss for me and getting down under the coveted 8% and getting the abs.
That was amazing. Second thing, making sure I wasn’t injuring my back on my squatting and deadlift; but my squat and deadlift went up massively as well.
I think at the end of the first 12-week block I was hitting 135kg on deadlift. So that was a 35% improvement and, critically, with no pain.
Then I don’t think I had any lats whatsoever before I started training here. We did a lot of work on those and you can see the flair now.
The biggest thing for me is actually my chest, which was almost nonexistent when I started here. I actually have a chest now.
Would you recommend UP?
Yes. I think the biggest regret I have is that I read about UP for a month and a half before I took the plunge and I wish I’d taken it sooner.
Why would I recommend UP? Because they get results. The biggest problem with the fitness industry is that there are so many people out there who will make promises but I don’t think a lot of them know what they’re talking about.
Coming to train with UP, as long as you put the work in, you will get results. There’s a direct correlation between effort and results.
If you want your own incredible transformation results like Iain, see what our UP Personal Training Plans can do for you.
- We show you the best, we don't show you the worst.
- We show you people who follow the plans, not those who are all talk.
- We show you those who inspire even us with their commitment to their results.
- You cannot get results exactly like these. You are unique and that means you can only get your own best possible results.
- Your results are a function of time spent following the plan; your genetic response to the right exercise and diet program; how hard you train; how consistently you come to the gym; how disciplined you are with your diet; & your starting point.
- Oftentimes the lower your starting point (poor fitness, terrible body composition) the better your results.
- We cannot do the work for you and the results you see here are a testament to the work ethic of our clients.
- Our reputation is that we are the best trainers in the world for helping you to unlock your potential, & we can lead you to the door, give you the key, even turn the handle and push the door open, but we cannot walk through it for you.
In the end the result is down to you.
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