Jeremy has changed his entire life over the past three years, both physically and mentally. He’s a stronger person. He leads by example. And– he just completed his 500th workout with AOA Fitness! I hope you can gain something from this story of Jeremy’s consistent effort.
I’ve been blessed to know and work with Jeremy since the fall of 2016. But even before we got linked up, he was listening to my own story just the year before thanks to Andy Morgan‘s Ripped Body Podcast.
On that episode, I was able to share my story about how so freakin’ skinny I was in high school. So skinny, in fact, the largest part of my arms were my elbows. Andy, being the great dude, was overselling me as a coach, and Jeremy thought to himself, “This dude is just like me.”
At the time, Jeremy was working with Andy to lean up. So when the dude came to us, he was already shredded. Unfortunately for Jeremy, Andy was taking a break from coaching. And having remembered that sad, skinny podcast guest named Chase, he made the connection.
I learned a lot about Jeremy: dude is a killer online marketer, he liked playing frisbee, and he loved looking good (I mean, who doesn’t). But just like me, he had been a skinny dude his whole life.
When he reached out in 2016, he had a clear objective: more muscle. He had seen the green, green grass of being shredded, and now he was looking forward to some seasons of moving the scale north of his 155 pound frame.
The Beginning (aka Dealing with Early Injury)
So, we began.
It was a slow start, as Jeremy had a naggin’ shoulder injury during that first phase that would pop up with certain press exercises. In those moments, we would talk through how he was feeling, adjust his exercise selections, and continue the work.
You see, when you begin something like a new workout routine, there will be workouts that groove for you. Then, there are others that totally suck for your body. Now, sometimes those that suck are because they’re new to your body. You just haven’t yet gotten the form down, or your body still isn’t used to the movement patterns. Other times, certain moves can cause actual pain, and I’m not talking soreness. Pain that impedes movement or leaves the joints wrecked.
This is where taking great notes of your workouts is so important. But, just taking notes won’t do. You then have to communicate those notes and feelings to your coach. This will help them analyze and decide what changes or modifications need to be made to your program.
Jeremy was a straight-up gym rat. And since he took such great notes and always gave us good insight on his sessions, we were able to really
craft make the sickest workouts for him.
Here’s an example of one of his first chest workouts that worked around how his shoulders felt:
- DB Incline Bench Press 4 sets x 5 reps
- Cable Crossovers 4 sets x 10 reps
- [Superset of 3 rounds]
- Slow Bar Dips ( to set stop point) 8
- Single arm Chest Press (machine) 8 per side
- [Superset of 3 rounds]
- DB Squeeze Press 8
- Push Up 12
The original plan had barbell bench (changed to DB incline bench press) and a weighted dip (changed to slow bar dips). Both were adjusted to how it felt and what worked best.
We used body part splits A LOT in those first six months– a style most “bro lifters” would be familiar with. During this time, Jeremy grew quite a bit. He was now jumping straight into a “gaining phase”— and that helped a ton after being in a “cutting phase” with Andy.
And, that is an awesome thing you can expect: once you come out of your first cutting phase, the gains you make back are heavenly. Seeing that muscle can really light a whole new drive for a building phase.
The Next Phase (aka Mo’ and Mo’ Gains)
Over the 2017 year, we ran two phases primarily. In the early part of the year, Jeremy was on a power/hypertrophy split (something close to Layne Norton’s PHAT program). During this time, he had 5 workouts per week:
- Two power days, one upper and one lower. These focused on heavy compound lifts with a lower set and rep count.
- We followed these up with 3 hypertrophy days. These focus on building muscle with medium weight, medium to high rep exercises.
An example of one of Jeremy’s Lower Body Hypertrophy Days is below:
|Kettlebell Goblet Squat||12reps x lbs||12reps x lbs||12reps x lbs|
|Landmine Squat||10reps x lbs||10reps x lbs||10reps x lbs|
|Machine Seated Leg Extension||15reps x lbs||15 reps x lbs||15reps x lbs|
|Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift||8 reps x lbs||8reps x lbs||8reps x lbs|
|Dumbbell Forward Lunge||10 reps x lbs||10 reps x lbs||10reps x lbs|
|Dumbbell Single Leg Calf Raise||15reps x lbs||15reps x lbs||15reps x lbs|
|RKC Plank||20 sec||20 sec||20 sec|
The second phase of 2017 was a cutting phase. We used a four workout system with two upper days and two lower days.
This is the formula we’ve used since 2017. In 2018 we did a strength cycle, strength/hypertrophy cycle, and finally a cutting cycle. And that is where we are at today.
Jeremy has just finished up his latest cutting cycle and instead of boring you with the last year of training splits, let me just hit you with the comparison pictures of Jeremy from 2016 and the ones he sent over in April 2019.
The craziest part of these two photos is that Jeremy is only one pound heavier in the freaking before picture.
Let’s go over his body stats from 2016 to 2019.
- Shoulder: 110.4 cm (2016) vs. 120 cm (2019) [4 inches difference up]
- Chest: 92 cm (2016) vs. 99.3 cm (2019) [3 inches difference up]
- Navel: 81.1 cm (2016) vs. 77.5 cm (2019) [2 inches difference down]
- Arms: 30.1 cm (2016) vs. 35 cm (2019) [2 inches difference up]
- Weight: 155 lbs (2016) vs. 154 lbs (2019) [1 pound down]
Jeremy has cycled up and down for the past three years. Adding mass all the way up over 175 lbs, and cutting it back down for his all-time lowest weight. We had cycles that worked well, which we stuck with for a long periods of time. And others that didn’t gel well for him, so we chose to adjust until that fit well enough that we could get to the next phase.
Jeremy has been a trooper through it all and has really locked things down this last cycle. Up next for him with be a hypertrophy phase with a slight surplus of calories. He’ll try to add the mass without the extra fat gain that can typically come so easily after achieving this level of leanness.
I’m super proud to call Jeremy my friend, and he was kind enough to give you a view from his perspective.
"Before working with Chase, I went through YEARS of frustration trying to bulk without packing on fat pounds of body fat and adding inches to my waistline. I was amazed at the service AOA offers, and I felt like I had all the information that I needed to succeed right at my fingertips. After years of hard work only to end up disappointed with the dismal results, I finally learned what to eat in order to gain lean mass without the fat and how many calories to consume each day… which exercises build muscle, what tempo to use, and which exercises to avoid. Chase was there every step of the way to answer questions I had about foods, supplements, and which exercises were best to target a lagging body part. I couldn't be more thrilled with my progress over the last two years. As an added bonus, Chase and I have become friends. I can't express how great it feels to discuss fitness and nutrition with a buddy who truly "gets it." Chase, thanks for everything." -Jeremy
I love sharing these stories because I’m incredibly proud of the people I work with. But more so, there are two other reasons I write about their journeys.
One, doing this gives you the chance to walk in someone else’s shoes. Jeremy’s hard work spans over a few years. It’s a reminder that it took time to accomplish his initial goal of gaining muscle. And just like everyone who has been successful, Jeremy wants to continue progressing. Two, you have an opportunity to see what’s truly possible with the right direction and dedication.
You can make any dream of your come true if you’ll just be deliberate in your actions. Action… that is the first step. Take action.
If there is something that I could help you with, feel free to reach out. Online Coaching | Instagram