My Transformation

Current Stats (2016):

  • Age: 28
  • Bodyweight: 89 kg / 196 lbs
  • Height: 178 cm / 5’8”

On this page I will share some more in-depth backstory on my own physical transformation over the years: how I went from skinny to less skinny. I will also discuss my nutrition evolution over the years.

2004: The Skinny Starting Year

I started my ambitious athletic journey in 2004, at the age of 16, as a skinny, unhappy and unathletic kid. This Shot of my at the time:

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Skinny me, early 2004 (60 kg / 132 lbs) – about to start my athletic journey

After discovering the acrobatic freestyle movement martial arts tricking through an internet search, I decided I wanted to try this sport. I wanted to get stronger, more flexible, look better and feel better. I wanted to improve myself, and I was inspired and motivated to do everything I could to become a more powerful version of myself.

This was the exact video that made me go “that’s it, I want to do this stuff”.

2005-2006: Gathering knowledge

Together with tricking I got into weightlifting (“fitness” at the time) so that I could work towards the stronger body I desired. I was hungry for knowledge and spent a lot of time reading about how to train. Soon I discovered that training alone would not be enough to reach my goal – nutrition played a very big role in this physique, performance and health game too! So I started reading more and more about improving physique and performance through nutrition.

Nutrition-wise, I got rid of the terrible snack behaviour that plagued me (and a lot of kids/teens these days). I started feeling better when I switched to healthier food choices and more consistent eating habbits. I was eating 5-7 small meals spread throughout the day, had a relatively high protein intake spread throughout these meals, and consumed plenty of the known “clean” and “bro” foods. I became interested in supplements too, and started using some when I thought my diet was “fine”.

My physique and physical performance improved slowly but steadily. Relatives and friends of mine started asking me questions about nutrition and health, because they noticed I was changing for the better. I felt good.

2007-2008: Growing, Studying Dietetics & Birth of StormTricks

Investing time in learning about “proper” nutrition and training changed my life in many positive ways. I felt more people could benefit from knowledge like that – and I found a lot of satisfaction in helping people (mainly friends and family) on these topics.

Eventually I decided I wanted to devote a large portion of my life to helping people through their nutrition and training. So, I started studying dietetics in 2008. Thanks to the fact I gathered a lot of nutritional knowledge prior to starting my dietetics course, everything went smooth. In 2012 I’d become a certified dietitican.

In 2008 I also created a personal webpage about tricking, training and nutrition – StormTricks. Here I would share my stories (tricking videos) and experiences on how I improved my body and conditioning over the years.

stormtricks

2009-2010: Dirty Bulking

My interest in strength training and getting bigger and stronger kept growing. I started eating a lot of food, back then I thought this would “maximize my gains”. Early 2010 I weighed in at ±88 kg – the heaviest I had ever been in my life. My bodyfatpercentage was pretty high too (around 15% or higher). So in 2 years I managed to gain some good muscle mass, but I gained quite a lot of fat too – just because I was gorging on food to get big. I also started to grow my hair out because I wanted to look like a heavy metal viking.

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Early 2010: ±88 kg / 194 lbs, at my heaviest and highest bodyfat level 

From 2010 up til early 2011 I was fluctuating a lot between the 84-88 kg. I was getting bored and slightly fed up with my almost religious eating habits of eating 6-8 smaller meals a day, having a big breakfast, spreading my protein intake evenly throughout the day, etc. I felt like a robot at times. But I kept it up, until I stumbled upon Intermittent Fasting in 2011.

2011: Intermittent Fasting and Getting Lean

Early 2011 I stumbled upon a “new” way of dieting for me: intermittent Fasting. It pretty much went against everything I thought was right about nutrition; skipping breakfast, only eating 2-3 big meals per day, etc. So obviously, I was quite skeptical. Being the curious and adventurous type, I decided to experiment with it.

One year later I could conclude that Intermittent Fasting has been the most successful nutritional experiment I had ever done. I managed to obtain the lean physique I wanted. I also enjoyed this way of eating when I got used to it. Larger and more satisfying meals & a lower meal frequency suited me. Following an IF protocol allowed for flexibility and structure at the same time.

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Early 2012: 78.5 kg / 173 lbs and 8-9% bodyfat

2012: Getting at my Leanest

I kept doing IF and got really lean. Yes – it took me a while before I realized IF was not magic – and that it mostly boiled down to caloric intake and the energy balance. In 2012, I decided to get as lean as possible. I started an extreme IF fat loss experiment – and it was quite tough. I was shredded at the end of that cut, but I also developed a bad relationship with food.

I wanted to stay shredded and have visible abs all the time. Because of this, it was really hard to progress strength-training wise – simply because I wasn’t giving my body the nutrients it required to recover & grow. I kept stagnating and eventually regressing – all for the sake of “abs and aesthetics”.

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Mid 2012: 76 kg / 167 lbs and 6-7% bodyfat. “Finally shredded”.

Thankfully I can now look back on these experiments and reflect on it as valuable learning experiences, because I don’t suffer from the “have to stay shredded forever” mindset any longer. Nowadays I prefer to eat for performance. That doesn’t mean I want to get fat: aesthetic powerbuilding is here to stay, forever!

2013 + 2014: Flexible Dieting & Consistency

In 2013 I felt that the restrictive feeding/fasting times were becoming a nuisance for me. They did not fit well with my varying work-times at that point in time. So I slowly started moving away from a strict Intermittent Fasting clockwork approach to a more flexible approach.

Ever since then I’ve simply been doing what is probably best described as “flexible dieting” – monitoring my caloric and macronutrient intake and keeping track of relevant statistics (bodyweight, strength levels, progression, etc.). It all boils down to energy balance and personal preferences after all: eating windows are silly.

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My physique in 2013 (±79kg / 174 lbs). Don’t mind the pig on the shelve.

As I mentioned above, I managed to move away from the “stay shredded forever” (<8% body fat all year ’round) mindset, as I experienced increased appetite-related problems (being a bottomless pit) and training stagnation. I don’t obsess as much over maintaining leanness all year round anymore, and look at more important and fun things – like training progress, enjoying life and a more healthy relationship with food. I hover in the 10-14% bodyfat zone and have found good consistency for myself.

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2014: Carrying a bit more bodyfat, but stronger and feeling good. Bodyweight ±81kg / 178 lbs.

2015 and onward: Bayesian Knowledge Gains

In 2015 I got the “Bayesian Bodybuilding Flu”: aka, I got hooked on really evidence based approaches to training + dieting that would help me get to the next level, strength and muscle building wise. And with great success: I burst through a lot of plateaus and am continuing to make gains.

So what are my nutrition habits like nowadays? I eat when I feel like it, and since I don’t like to eat early (not hungry + a lot of other things to do in the morning!), I simply don’t have an early breakfast. I track my calorie and macronutrient intake, have a low meal frequency (3 meals a day: lunch, dinner, pre-bed), save the bulk of my calories/carbs for post workout and later on the day and have a “flexible feeding window” from 13:00-01:00. This way of dieting has been great for me, and it’s something I might just keep on doing for the rest of my life.

Training wise, I’ve become very fond of the high frequency full-body approach. I basically train every bodypart 6-7 times a week and carefully monitor my weekly volume per muscle group.

And that’s my transformation over the years – physique and nutrition wise. What are my goals now? I simply want to enjoy life, get stronger and look good – and help people achieve the same!

viking-progress2

An amusing final comparison. Yup, viking progression over the years: present!