This Guy Lost 54 Pounds and Completely Shredded in 6 Months

This Guy Lost 54 Pounds and Completely Shredded in 6 Months

At 46, Austin Cowburn felt his training was “directionless” and he began to gain weight. This former runner and marathon runner wanted to overcome his injuries and find the best of himself. Here’s how he did it.

Running has always been my favorite exercise. As a young man I joined several running clubs and even finished quite high in the New York City Marathon in 1995. I spent weeknights and Saturday mornings on the track or in a pool . Cardio is familiar to me and growing up I stuck to it. Looking back, I realize that I didn’t have the understanding and technique to really benefit from weight training.

After a few years of training without direction, plus two injuries and rehab, and poor diet, I gained weight. It ignited other nagging injuries, which made me feel like I just wasn’t at my best. I felt lazy; my favorite clothes didn’t fit as well and the new ones seemed smaller than I expected. I wanted to get back to marathons, but to do that I need to be fitter, stronger and healthier. So I contacted Ultimate Performance Manchester for help.

We started with the basics: monitoring and being consistent with my diet. I went from eating lots of high calorie foods, at all times of the day, to something much more sustainable. I would appreciate a mixed berry smoothie in the morning with protein and three scrambled eggs with spinach mid-morning. Mid-afternoon and evening, I ate lean meat chili, mostly ground turkey meat, with lots of vegetables, including peppers and tomatoes, and rice. I also enjoyed a low-fat, high-protein yogurt in the evening mixed with banana, honey or chia seeds. On weekends, I could indulge in a good steak.

We often overlook the impact dieting can have on mood, energy levels, and your ability to train hard and perform at your best. Changing what I ate really reminded me of the importance of a fundamental diet.

I trained three times a week at the gym, usually from 8 to 9 a.m. I loved doing it first thing in the morning, which really set me up for the day. I would also run four times a week. I really had my love for running during this period: my distances increased and I had no injuries. I didn’t even have any pain afterwards. Training, losing weight and getting my body right has really helped me regain my fluidity of movement.

It has also helped with my energy level and my sleep. I felt mentally sharper, more productive and more creative. People told me my skin was glowing. Everyone was extremely positive and kind inside and outside the gym, complimentary and genuinely encouraging. My family was very proud and surprised with the results, and I felt like the best version of myself.

In six months, I lost 24.6 kg (54 pounds), dropping my body fat percentage from 28.2% to 11.6%. I went from an extra large to a medium. I kept training, and now I’m eating more and building muscle mass. I’m looking to sustain my gains and also increase the number of exercises I have in my toolbox.

It’s great to be able to say that better training has helped me avoid injuries. The more I trained, the more I wanted it and my stamina skyrocketed. I am happier, more relaxed and more motivated; I just feel better about myself.

I think anyone can do it, and if you’re on the fence about it, go for it. Set clear goals and seek help, whether it’s a professional trainer or just a friend who will hold you accountable. You don’t have to change everything all at once; I advise you not to put too much pressure on yourself from one session to another. Enjoy your exercises; make sure you rest and refuel properly.

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