Today I want to share with you a great transformation story that I think will inspire many of you. This is the story of Will Cook, who started out as an average overweight guy and decided to take charge of his health one day by following a healthy bodybuilding lifestyle. Below is his story:
What inspired you to make the change in your lifestyle that allowed you to lose the weight?
Disgust! I hated myself so much when I was at my obese peak. Mind you that peak consisted of 354-lbs. and 45% body fat! I was 21 years old and had a tough time with girls in high school and was only getting harder after. I had no confidence and only got by, by having a large sense of humor and a desire to make people laugh so it would keep the attention from what they were all “really” thinking(in my mind) how fat i was. My self esteem was non-existent either. So on February 28 2004, I had my best friend take before pictures of me to solidify this was the beginning of the rest of my life. The very next day, March 1 2004, I walked in the gym and the rest is history!
Can you explain what your training looked like?
It’s funny to reflect on now, but it started with me going and doing 30 mins of weights and 20 mins on the stationary bike on my hour lunch break Monday thru Friday. Weights consisted of mostly the Cybex circuit and messing around with free weights from time to time, when eventually I got to know everyone, I had plenty of guys showing me the ropes and giving advice. Eventually gravitated to mostly free weights.
Can you explain what your diet looked like?
Ashamed to admit I was a diet fad junkie! Atkins mostly, but also South Beach. Mostly protein in general. Very few fruits, veggies or carbs. Attributing to me losing alot of muscle during this initial weight loss. When I got down to 205-lbs I was still over 20% body fat! Wasn’t until I found bodybuilding that I learned the true value of dedicated nutrition! When i did my first show i stepped on stage at 204-lbs and 4% body fat. 16% of the fat mass was burned and put back on in the form of lean muscle. Diet is most important!
What supplements did you use and why?
Pretty much consisted of only whey protein and fat burners. [Lee’s note: For a premium quality whey protein try our new IsoLeanPro here.] Mostly because my main goal was weight loss no matter what it took. 2-3 shakes a day and fat burners to sweat good during workouts. Nothing fancy.
What kept you focused throughout the journey?
Shear will and determination to keep moving forward. Constantly watching the scale drop week by week, month by month gives you such gratification, you just want more and more. That’s how I got the nickname “The Way,”first because my names Will and second, I’ve always used the mantra “Where there’s a will, there’s a way and I’m right here” to push myself. So the “The Way” had manifested itself.
What kind of goals do you have now?
After becoming your quentisenchel gym rat for a few years, I found bodybuilding. Bodybuilding has become a enormous way of life for me. I started reading the magazines in early 2009 and was obsessed after reading so much a year later started to try to train like a bodybuilder. Was immediately in love and had the training part down, just a heck of a time with nutrition. Flash forward to August 2011, I met a local bodybuilder at the gym who had been an accomplished Mr. Michigan middleweight. We hit it off and began working together. We decided to try the 2012 Mr. Novice Michigan Championships on St. Patricks’ Day for my first show. I ended up winning the heavyweight class and was pushing hard for the overall. It was over from there, I was bit by the bodybuilding bug and currently in my off-season for the 2013 Mr. Ohio.
What message would you like to give others that are in the situation you were in before?
Patience is number one! You must set small goals and reach them and repeat. Fitness goals should be a marathon or lifestyle, not a race. Lastly, perseverance is key. You will have times where you plateau and have thoughts of giving up. That’s when you persevere and work twice as hard the next weeks. Use plateaus to explore and try new exercises or training styles, it also keeps fitness fun and challenging, rather then monotonous and annoying. Believe in yourself!
~ Sincerely, Will “The Way” Cook
Amazing story Will! Keep up the wonderful work!
And for all of you remember, that I am here to help. Be sure to check out the sample diets and workouts below if you are in need of a nutrition and training program.
For sample diets => https://www.labrada.com/yourgoals
For weekly workouts => https://www.labrada.com/forum/muscle-building-workouts/
Yours for a Lean Body,
Your Lean Body Coach™