Wednesday, 30 October 2013

You're The Inspiration

People often ask me what keeps me going, what inspires me.  Well I always say the people that love me and are loved in return, but whilst that will always be true my proteges give me a whole different level of inspiration.  This picture is of Abdou, a drug free junior that I coach in Norway .  He has made tremendous progress with my help even though it has just been via the internet and did well in his very first show despite competing against others who were not drug free.  He sent me a lovely email full of genuine praise and thanks but my favourite part was this bit which I have cut and pasted, these are exactly his words. "I was positive and helped other people around me to achieve their goals too. I ate, trained, rested and abstained from anything that could affect me in a negative way - drugs, fast food, women, facebook etc. and that was the reason I achieved my goal."  I love every word of that, a lesson for us all from a dedicated young man, take a bow sir!

Monday, 28 October 2013

Everything Is Great

Prep for my last ever show, The Stars of Tomorrow this coming Sunday at the Beck Theatre in Hayes, is going very well.  I received a massive boost yesterday from super heavyweight Martin Stevenson who has been helping me with my show prep at Olney Health & Fitness.  Martin is meticulous and after watching my posing practice yesterday he told me that I look the best that he has ever seen me.  That is high praise and it meant a lot to me.  I did a 48 hour replenishment diet straight after the Britain and then went back to my show diet, training and cardio plan, it seems to have worked very well.  Relaxation plays an important part in show prep and the best relaxation for me is the 24 hours a week that I have my Granddaughter Lilybelle all to myself.  Here she is, looking as gorgeous as ever, in her new fleece top from my friends at XXXL clothing.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

No Excuses

As usual after a show I have so many people to thank for their lovely messages. The best two were one that said "not bad for someone who's intestines were trying to escape at the time" and another that congratulated me on being the oldest person to bring home a trophy from the finals!  I love the diversity of the compliments and I can never believe just how many people really do care about me.  On that subject the hernia is well under control and not very painful anymore so I will be fine to do the "Stars" but again, thanks for all the concern shown, it means the world to me. Here is a small pic of me and the guys that placed 2nd & 3rd, I'll post the show pics and video as soon as Eric Guy sends them to me but I think that they will reveal that it was my abs that let me down.  While there is an obvious reason for that I would never use it as an excuse and instead I will make sure that they look better for my final show. In the meantime a few more photos can be viewed using this link.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

UKBFF British Finals 2013

Yesterday I placed 6th in the UKBFF British Finals and I'm happy with that even though, as usual, many people came up to me after and said that I should have won or placed top 3 at least.  From my perspective I can tell you that backstage the top 6 of us all agreed beforehand that any of us could have won and the judges made a point of telling the crowd that they had great trouble separating the six of us after the posedown. The quality of the top 6 in all the classes at the finals was the best I've ever seen and I'm just proud to have been part of that exclusive club.  Lets be honest, a few people got to the finals winning small regionals just by beating their mate from the local gym but the Britain really does weed those few out.  I went in just under 17 stone and shredded, I'll post pictures as soon as I have them. One quick word about the venue in Harrogate - awesome!  As for me I will now try to end my career with a win when I do my last show, "The Stars Of Tomorrow" in Hayes on November 3rd.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

The Things We Do For Love

Whisper it quietly but this hernia thing might not be that serious after all. As recommended by my Doctor, I'm living in a hernia girdle which has pushed the lump back behind the stomach wall, it could be ok now or it could pop back out at sometime in the future but with my history of tummy problems that's something that I'm used to living with.  Needless to say, I'm not thinking any further ahead than this weekend, I've worked harder than ever for this, my last ever British final and that will be reflected in my physique when I get on stage. The pressure of the girdle has caused some internal bleeding in my double laperotomy scar but I have been assured that this is not serious and will cover with the dark spray tan that I am having.  It's been a very tough week, what with sorting this out and carb depletion too but for me and everyone else that is competing it will soon be showtime.  So, I'm ready now; lets do this!

Tuesday, 15 October 2013


So, after getting into the best shape of my life, and with just a few days to go to the British finals I woke up to find this. It's yet another hernia, this time right between the two biggest operation scars on my stomach where the stomach wall is just a mass of scar tissue. My doctor, Imran, is a friend and has been very supportive throughout my career, in return I've helped him with his diet and exercise, yes really, I advise Doctors too! He asked me to stop training and forget about competing and to go into hospital straight away to get it fixed, but he smiled when I told him that pain is just weakness leaving the body and it would take a lot more than a mere hernia to make me stop now. He has recommended a few things which I will do up until show time to reduce the swelling but clearly this will make it very difficult to get a decent result now.  It would be very easy to get despondent or even give up but I won't do either of those things, the sign of a true champion is not how they respond to victory but how they respond to adversity, this setback merely proves that I am human after all, it means nothing more than that.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Seven Days

I'm often asked what the last seven days of a show diet is like and how tough it is. Well right now I am incredibly tired, I look like I've aged about 20 years and tomorrow, to make things worse, carb depletion starts. That means cutting down my daily carbs from 100 grams to 50 grams until Thursday evening when I will start a very light carb load so that I keep the deep cuts that I've worked for but also have some energy for when I get on stage.  I'm down to 17stone 2lb and want to lose 4lbs in 4 days just by carb depletion before I start dehydration. I'm confident that going in light and shredded is the way to go. I've had my last bit of relaxation this weekend, I had a brilliant day with Lilybelle yesterday and she stayed with me until this morning when I had to go and do my last leg workout. After that I spent some time with my good friend Kenny, we had a great time and I now feel ready to face this last tough week.

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

When The Going Gets Tough

These are what I call the "hard yards". Just 11 days to go to the UKBFF British finals and the diet is biting now. After reviewing the Midlands show video I've realised that I will have to go under 17 stone to be shredded enough to stand a chance in what will no doubt be my toughest British final ever. I say that simply because the quality in my class at just about every regional show this year has been outstanding. The only way to respond to that is to prepare better than ever before and go on stage with the best package I have ever built, even though I will be nearer to 55 years old than 54 by showtime. In this pic, taken yesterday upon completion of the show prep DVD workout filming, I'm 17 stone 4 lbs, I intend to take 8 lbs off of that before show time, like I said, it's now that the diet starts to bite.  During these "hard yards" I watch different things for inspiration, on Sunday I watched "Seabiscuit" again, that movie will always have a special place in my heart.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

That's Entertainment

Apparently as the weather becomes colder every day and Autumn replaces summer we are all less inclined to go out and more likely to stay at home to entertain ourselves.  Well as the TV isn't that great at the moment and series 1 of Ray Donovan is sadly over here are some videos for you to look at. - the latest preview from the show prep DVD - the official show video of my class from the UKBFF Midlands, courtesy of Eric Guy.  Or if reading is your thing then here's the special feature that I promised you And if you are into blogs then I would highly recommend that you check out this one  If you think that I defy my age you won't believe this lady!  Finally, best of luck to Anthony Joshua on his debut tonight, Anthony is an exciting prospect and with the guidance of Lennox Lewis his potential is limitless

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Forever Young

I do love it when people send me pictures like the one above.  It's great that people take the time out to do stuff like this for me, I really appreciate it, and when I'm told that this is proof that I am actually getting younger then I really feel good about myself!  These are show pictures taken backstage after my wins at the last two UKBFF Midlands Championships, they are taken by the same photographer, Adrian Wooley, with exactly the same set up, but they are taken one year apart and I'm one year older in the pic on the left.  They are in monochrome because apparently that is better for comparisons. I'm not sure about the whole "Forever Young" thing but the picture surprised me a bit. It's good to know that I'm making improvements, I must be getting something right but also it's because this year I have had much less stress after the disasters of last year and the things that have tried to stress me this year have been very easily dealt with.  Moreover, I firmly believe that the resolution of my air purification issue has been a great help too and I've acknowledged that in this latest special feature which I think  you will  find both very interesting and useful

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Hold On Tight

October is here so now the countdown to the Britain really starts!  I'm pleased with the way that I'm holding both size and condition, this photo was taken today after we had shot more footage for the show prep DVD.  We are putting a huge amount of very useful information into the movie for anyone that ever wants to compete or even just get into top shape for a holiday or any other reason and I'm really looking forward to seeing the finished article sometime in November, it will make a great Christmas present for anyone that's serious about bodybuilding.  The hardest part of show prep is of course the diet but one way that I solve my hunger cravings is to make my own protein desserts, the recipe is so popular it has been featured in an "Ultimate Protein Recipe Book" and if you like it you can vote for it in a competition by going to this page so please do so!  Meanwhile, the special feature that I promised about air quality will be on the website by the end of the week and I will post a link in the next blog.