Programme: Strength & Conditioning

Thomas’ goal was to put on some muscle. He had always been skinny, but that wasn’t something he wanted.
“There is a real sense of accomplishment in what I’ve actually managed to do”, he said. “The self confidence boost this has given me too…. I’m more happy in my own skin”. Thomas just wanted to gain muscle, but we set a target of 3kg weight gain initially. The aim was for most of this to be muscle


Half a stone


+4 inches


+2.25 inches


8 months


The first activity in his programme was our ‘Set up for Success’ induction. This comprised:

  • Taking measurements and photographs to benchmark Thomas’ starting point.
  • Benchmarking his daily calorie expenditure.
  • Setting a goal. We set this as 3kg weight gain.
  • Setting an initial level for his calorie intake. We set his calories at 250 above maintenance levels. This should allow him to gain weight steadily but not so fast that a lot of the gains would be fat.
  • Providing coaching on food intake. This included food theory and diet construction.
  • Constructing an exercise programme consisting predominantly of weight training.


We keep a constant dialogue with clients to enable them to get the most from the programme. With Thomas we made the following observations and took the following actions:

  • Thomas was able to accommodate a higher calorie intake almost immediately.
  • Thomas took a while to adapt to a new style of training, finding it quite intense in the early sessions. But he always put maximum effort into his sessions and, once his body was used to it, Thomas made excellent gains.
  • We had to keep increasing Thomas’ calorie intake as the weight gain slowed, eventually topping out at close to 4,000 calories a day.


The exercise programme had the following elements:

Cardiovascular Exercise

Thomas continued to go for a jog a couple of times a week and play badminton occasionally. This helped to:

  • Keep his heart, lungs and vascular system strong.
  • Improve his ability to burn fat as a fuel.
  • Maintain good health markers and resting heart rate.

Weight training to

  • Enable him to gain muscle.
  • Strengthen and tone his upper body in particular.
  • Develop a better ‘V’ shape – wider chest and shoulders whilst maintaining a slim waist.

“I really enjoyed pushing myself….admiring what I’d actually managed to achieve… that’s probably the best feeling I’ve had”


Before   After

Thomas McCarthy Before and After Right

Before   After

Thomas McCarthy Before and After Front

Body Stats

Thomas put 4 inches on his chest, 2.5 inches on his legs and over 2 inches on his arms. He looks chunkier and more toned.

Thomas McCarthy Chart

Weight Gains

Thomas gained half a stone of muscle and very little body fat, his %body fat only increasing from 16.7 to 17.1%.


In terms of strength gains, Thomas’ front squat went from 21kg to 70kg, his deadlift from 37kg to 85 kg (more than his bodyweight) and his bench press from 25kg to 50kg


Thomas gained half a stone of muscle, put 4 inches on his chest and over 2 inches on his arms. He has enjoyed receiving compliments about the way he looks and has boosted his self confidence. He feels more comfortable in his own skin and has taken away the knowledge to be able to maintain or continue to build his physique.

“People in my workplace have actually complimented me. Some of [my shirts] are a little harder to get into, that’s something they’ve noticed too, that’s something I feel quite a joy in hearing”

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