How David Got Gradually Leaner In The Build Up To Christmas

David, 40, QBE

Hey it’s Vlad! And I’ve got a great story to share with you. I’ve recently had a pleasure to work with David who I’ve known for almost a year now. About 6 weeks ago I had an opportunity to sit down with David over a coffee at Caffe Nero on Fenchurch Street talking about my exciting Online PT idea. To cut the story short, here’s what happened:

David's lost 1.5kg of bodyweight and 5cm in his waist in his first 6 weeks.

That’s pretty good. Especially for someone who’s already in a pretty good shape (77,5kg) and goes to New York for a week during the second week of his Online PT programme to celebrate his birthday. Which means that together with his jet lag that’s about 10 days of a major setback. And being real, that makes David a pretty big achiever. He lost 1.5kg of fat, 5cm off his waist, kept his muscle mass and increased his strength all in 6 weeks.

Let's See How We Did It

Defining goals and motivation.
After an initial consultation David got his own tailor made workout programme with food guidelines and I got an understanding of what matters to him, what motivates him and how to support him to meet his goals.

No face-to-face PT sessions.
We’ve kept in touch online exclusively with no face to face sessions. David has his programme to follow and I’ve got to make sure he’s in the best place to do so.

No crazy or long workouts.
We started with a combination of lifting with a bit of cardio and the focus would be on big compound movements. The workouts fit David’s preference and are challenging at the same time.

Bodyfat: 2,1% lost, Squats Starting: 37.5kg - Now: 80kg, Shoulder Press Starting: 20kg - Now: 40kg, Leg Press Starting: 80kg - Now: 130kg, Cable Rows Starting: 30kg - Now: 45kg, + maintained and slightly increased strength on chest

David has the flexibility to do things on his own schedule.
And if you’ve seen my work you know that’s the point. I’m here to make sure that people can consistently get the results they want without compromising their lifestyle or making any drastic changes. It’s about sustainability. David goes to gym whatever time of the day suits him, eats whatever he wants reasonably according to his goal and organises everything on his terms.

David was very diligent right from the start.
Despite commuting for work and having a generally hectic schedule, every week, we would have a check-in to assess what had been working and what could be improved. David managed to make some progress every week with the exception of his New York trip where he managed to minimise the impact almost perfectly. He made no excuses throughout, stayed disciplined and kept his eyes on the goal even though he travelled and was busy in general.

We did not use a strict diet plan.
With straightforward, simple to understand rules about carbs, fat and protein ratios, David could make the right choices wherever he was. No crazy diets, no crazy supplements. And thanks to that he was also able to lose fat (left pic.) and maintain his muscle mass (right pic.)


Maximum flexibility. On his terms. Empowering and not prescribing. David is happy with the way it’s going, feels great and looks forward to more progress in the following weeks.

David’s Perspective On Things

David – I have been working in an office for around 15 years now, working in an increasingly demanding environment involving long hours, overseas visits and trips overseas.  Whilst I have always had one eye on my weight and health, I was very much aware of the slow but steady weight gain across the years, and the corresponding expansion of my waistline.  Ultimately this lead a a situation where I was approaching my 40th birthday nearly 2 stone heavier than I had been at the start of my career (along with 4 inches more on my waist)

I’d known for some time that I wanted to sort out this situation, partly for appearances, but also for my health:  I didn’t want to accept that I was going to get out of breath easily, feel tired and just generally let my body lapse into middle age.

Over the years I joined a few gyms, following the latest fad workout regime I’d found online or In a magazine.  It always followed the same pattern – intense activity for a few weeks, notice a bit of progress then get bored, loose the point of what I was doing then give up and carry on with the slow weight gain.  Like many others, I knew basically what I should be doing, but just struggled with sticking to it.

The approach of the big 4-0 really focused my mind:  I wanted to sort this situation out in a more sustained way than I had ever done before.  I had taken a few PT sessions over the years in gyms, but I found these generally uninspiring and not really any more use than the routines I found in magazines, but with the added difficulty of having to fix on specific days and times in a working schedule which needs a lot of flexibility.  None of it really struck a chord.

Do You Want To Transform Your Body And Enrich Your City Life?



I then read the Sets In The City book by Vlad:  for the first time it seemed like there was someone out there who really understood the competing demands of trying to be a success in the city, whilst achieving a fit and healthy lifestyle.  I met with him and realised here was someone who could really inspire me to achieve my goals.  However, for me the traditional model of PT sessions still didn’t feel right.  Vlad then suggested his online training with access to an app where I’d track my workouts and progress. The app is extremely user friendly and easy to use. The workouts Vlad gave me are uploaded in there with the history of my previous workouts.

The real bonus for me is the flexibility:  I can go to the gym exactly when I want, and can change this at short notice, yet still with the tracking of my progress and encouragement/support from a trainer who understands my objectives, and knows his stuff about health, fitness and nutrition.

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With this approach I feel like I have real ownership of my lifestyle and can plan it in a way which works.  After 6 weeks I could feel the difference and know that this is an approach which can work for me for the long term.

Asking David About His Experience

So David, well done for completing your first 6 weeks. How do you feel right now compared to 6 weeks ago when we first spoke about this?
Great -  already feel fitter, with more energy, and trousers are less tight!

Just for anyone who’s reading this to understand what has your training and progress been in the past?
I used to follow training programmes I found online, in magazines, or ones that my friends were on, but none of them really stuck. I’ve also had a few PTs, but honestly I’ve never really found someone who I felt connected with what I wanted to achieve. What I struggled with, was getting consistent results. Generally I would enjoy a few weeks of progress, then stagnation, then sometimes it would even reverse. Having said that, I’ve not really been doing a lot to deal with this. I would let it happen until the next time I decided to try and blitz it. And then the same cycle would just happen all over again. I found that my biggest obstacle to getting better and more consistent results was a lack of focus, pure and simple. Along with needing to believe that I could actually achieve what I wanted to. On top of that, like many others in the City, I have a pretty packed schedule, so balancing my training with my lifestyle can be a bit of a challenge. I know each week how much training I want to do and try and make sure I stick to that – it might mean some workouts at lunchtime, in the evening, or even 20 minutes with a skipping rope at home. What I try to do is not to pressure myself for specific times etc., but just to include all I want to do in the week overall. 

What was the pivotal moment that made you think ok let’s do this?
I guess that would be the first chat I had with Vlad, as well as reading his book. I was really struck by how Vlad’s approach is completely different to any other trainer I have ever spoken to. In the past, PTs I’ve had time with, have only really given me generic programmes, and I have never felt that connection with my goals, and that those goals relate to my whole life, not just my training. Meeting Vlad as I was approaching my 40th birthday was perfect timing.

What’s the most important factor for you when training?
Flexibility is key, And being answerable to myself but knowing someone else is there keeping track, providing support and encouragement.

What about Sets In The City Online PT contributed to your achievements? What are your thoughts about the programme?
What I liked most about Online PT is its flexibility, and how easy it is to use. The most important thing I’ve learnt from this, is that slow and steady progress makes a big difference as the weeks tick by. I would really recommend this to anyone who has a busy life but who is keen to keep in shape on their own terms, with some professional support / encouragement / knowledge. While the programme has helped change my fitness routine and diet, more importantly, it has kept them consistent, which is what I always struggled with.

What is the greatest value Online PT has brought to you?
Being able to keep my exercise consistent, but in a flexible way,

What are your top 3 pieces of advice/tips for people in a similar position that you were in?
1. Decide for yourself what you want to achieve, and understand WHY.
2. Be realistic about what time you can give to it and make a plan
3. Stick to it – flexibly! At the end of the week if you have done the amount of exercise you were planning to do that’s great, even if it’s not when you were expecting or you had to change what you were going to do.

Explore Other Successful Body Transformations

Hadrien, 27, EY
Hadrien’s now trained with me on two separate occasions and on both of them succesfully shredded a lot of fat while building his upper body and core strength. What’s remarkable is that he’s achieved his great results along with going to some great parties during the weekends.
Hadrien’s ultimately managed to go from 22% body fat down to 7,4%.

Check Out Hadrien's Transformation Story