Q: What advice do you have for people just starting a bodybuilding project, in terms of setting realistic goals?A: Give yourself ample time - 12 weeks. Then break the 12 weeks down into more manageable goals. For instance the short term goal will be the first 4 weeks, then medium term goals will be 8 weeks. Log all your results so that you can see what worked for you and what didn’t. Bodybuilding is all about finding that winning formula what works best for you and your metabolism.
Q: How did you get into bodybuilding?A: I was always into sports as a youngster and unfortunately was injured at the age of 14, which meant I was bed-bound for a few months, I gained weight and wanted to do something about it once I was fully recovered, so I started the gym after school.
Q: Do you have to have a certain body type to get into bodybuilding or is it a case of using what you've got well?A: I believe anyone can bodybuild it’s just sometimes easier for people with good genetics than others. That being said even those with great genetics do still have to put the time, dedication and commitment in to build their body successfully.
Q: How hard is the training?A: The harder you train, the quicker and the better the results you will see. Obviously you would need to nail the nutrition side first as that’s around the 80% mark for how you look and feel. Only 20% is actually training. Every session should be to your maximum in my opinion.
Q: Do you have any nutrition tips?A: The more natural and organic the product, the better it is for you. Introduce a good amount of protein through every source possible like red meat, white meat, fish, eggs etc. Try to keep your carb intake to complex carbs and get a good amount of fibre in your diet. Little and often throughout the day is best so you’re effectively grazing instead of having three big meals. This will be good for your metabolism and will make it work more efficiently.
Q: What’s your favourite muscle part to exercise?A: My shoulders - I love the feeling of being able to isolate the anterior, medial and posterior head. Also once the blood is in there it gives the wide-shouldered, tapered-waist look which is what every bodybuilder wants. Plus it’s my strongest muscle group, haha!
Q: What's the hardest muscle group to train?A: I find that I really struggle with calves as I had an injury in 2010 which slightly damaged my nerve in my left calf. This makes my training slightly harder and I sometimes struggle to get the stimulation I want. I’d say calves are my weakest muscle group.
Q: How do you avoid injury?A: It’s very hard to avoid injury if you are training seven days-a-week as the body doesn’t get enough time to rest and recover. So I have 1-2 rest days in a week. I also warm up with light weights and target the surrounding muscle group/joints before going in and lifting heavy straight away.
Q: Recovery is important - what are your top tips to ensure muscle recovery and growth?A: Make sure you have plenty of sleep, ideally eight hours minimum a night and give yourself two days rest in a working seven-day week. Five days is ample to train every muscle part.
Q: How do you deal with the DOMS?A: Add more protein in to your diet and introduce BCAAs (branch chain amino acids) and glutamine around your training. These are great supplements to reduce fatigue whilst training and to speed up the recovery process from the broken -down muscle fibres.
Ryan Terry is an ambassador for USN UK.
Advice is for information only and should not replace medical care or recommendations. Please check with your GP before embarking on exercise or nutrition regimes for the first time.