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Welcome to D.T.P!!

My story of how I was introduced to Dramatic Training Principle or D.T.P…

It was about 4 years ago and I had never heard of Kris Gethin or his training plans before. I was just a casual gym goer doing the odd set here and there to get by. I wouldn’t say I ever really challenged myself in the gym before in regards of seeing what my body could really do and how to overcome pain and negative thoughts in my head telling me to stop….until this one particular day…

I walked into the gym and it was pretty quiet as it was during the early afternoon. My mate (Rob) who was the owner of the gym started chatting to me and as he normally did he asked me what I was going to train that day. I said I wasn’t really sure – again this was when I never really had a plan to follow I just made it up as I went along. Rob said that he had read and tried a new training method called D.T.P. and if I was up for it he would put me through it. “Ok, Why not” I said, not having a clue what was about happen!

“We are going to do biceps and triceps” he said as he picked up an empty EZ-Curl bar. He set it on the floor in front of me and loaded it with a 1.25kg plate on each side. “Are you taking the piss or something?” I said as I looked at him pretty confused. Whilst I am by no means strong I can certainly lift an EZ-Bar (about 5kg in weight) with a couple extra kilos on. “Just trust me”, he said with a rather odd smirk across his face. I picked the bar up and set myself ready to curl this bar he had set up for me and looked at him for instruction……”First set, 50 reps!….Go”. I laughed at him “Yeah Ok” I said in a sarcastic manner. He laughed as well then pulled a serious face and said “50 reps….lets go!” I then realised he was being serious so my laughing soon stopped. I was a typical 3 sets of 10 -12 reps kind of gym goer so anything over this seemed ludicrous!

Anyway I looked at the light bar in my hands and thought it should be quite easy…….I was wrong. As I worked my way through the reps he would correct my form telling to stand up straight, keep my elbows in, try not to swing the weight up etc meaning the exercise was getting harder and harder. By the time I hit 30 reps my biceps were on fire. By 40 I could barley lift the bar anymore. Rob continuously shouted in my ear to keep going and get the reps done. I finally hit 50 reps and near enough dropped the bar to the floor as my arms just stopped working…..”Follow me” he said as he walked across the gym to the cable machine. He clipped on a straight bar and said “tricep pushdowns….50 reps lets go”. I think I swore at him but he didn’t care and told me to start. I gripped the bar and started doing the reps, all the time my biceps feeling more pumped and worked than ever before. The tricep extensions felt a little easier but still by the time I hit 50 reps they were pretty shot.

I dropped the bar and shook my arms out trying to revive them and get some kind of feeling back. Rob wandered across the gym again back to the EZ-curl bar and added another couple of 1.25kg plates to each end. I had already worked my arms way beyond what I had ever done before that so I was dreading what he was about to make me do next. “next set 40 reps…lets go” he said grinning from ear to ear. I just looked at him blankly and asked if he was being serious….of course he was!

This brutality went on for the next 20 mins or so of him shouting at me to get the reps done before he would add more weight to the bar and the cable stack and tell me the reps to do. Sets of 30, 20 and 10 all followed and how I managed to get through them is beyond me….I think its almost a blur. I hit the last couple reps of tricep extensions and dropped the weight and dropped to my knees rubbing my arms trying to find a position to hold them in so they didn’t hurt as much.

“How was that?” Rob asked giggling to himself knowing full well how I felt. Then he hit me with the bombshell….”We aren’t finished yet….that’s only halfway!”. I think I swore at him again! “Are you joking?” I asked still trying to revive my arms. “Very serious” he said, “we go back up in reps now!” I think I nearly cried when I heard that! Rob always was a good motivator though so I soon got back up to my feet and started the torturous reps back up the pyramid. The heavier sets were not as bad as the higher rep lighter sets. The higher reps just felt like someone was holding a blowtorch against my arm and I could barley lift my water bottle up to my face to take a drink.

“47……..48……..49……..50!” that was the first time I have ever willed myself to count that high! Those last few reps on the final sets of 50 were absolute agony and I think I was down to just the weight of the EZ bar by then as well. I didn’t care what weight I was “trying” to lift I just wanted to get the reps done. As I finished I just sunk to the floor and sat there for a while as Rob was just happily laughing and singing to himself about the pain I was in. Whilst I was sat on the floor I asked him about what we had just done and he explained it was by a guy called Kris Gethin and it was called D.T.P training…..I knew I wasn’t about to forget that name for a while!

The next day I went to the gym with my arms in bits but deep down I felt really good about what I had achieved. I had learnt to push my body beyond what it was capable of and whilst it may hurt and feel like torture at the time the feeling of accomplishment after was even better and made it all worth it! I spent the next few days on the internet researching and reading about Kris and D.T.P. I then fell upon Bodybuilding.com and his 12 week hardcore trainer. From this point onwards my view on the gym and how to train was completely different. I undertook the 12 week hardcore trainer and got into the best shape of my life.

I cannot thank Kris enough for the knowledge and motivation he has given me through his programmes and writing. I have in the years since followed his hardcore trainer twice, his muscle building trainer twice, his 4 weeks to shred twice and of course his D.T.P trainer several times. D.T.P and its various forms play a vital part in my training and always will as it is such a versatile and good way of training especially in times when you don’t have very long to train.

I would urge anyone to give D.T.P a go and see how it can benefit them. I have added a picture of my various transformations I have gone through following Kris’ programmes.

transformations

My Transformation Blog – Day 43 – Legs

I didn’t have to be in work today until the afternoon so I decided to train in the morning. Today was leg day and after my poor effort last week I was a bit nervous going in to it as I did not want to have another poor session. I met one of my mates at the gym so we both trained legs together which was a real help as it meant I had a reason to push harder.

I wasn’t able to follow the session exactly as the plan said as the gym I was using did not have the right equipment so I just did the best that I could. The session went like this:

  • Leg extension – 3 sets 10 -12 reps
  • Hamstring Curl – 3 sets 10 – 12 reps
  • Barbell box squats – 4 sets 20 reps final set was a triple drop set
  • Leg extensions – 3 sets 15 – 20 reps final set was a triple drop set
  • Hamstring Curl – 3 sets 15 – 20 reps final set was a triple drop set
  • Walking lunges – 1 set to failure

The squats were a real test as they showed how unconditioned I am at the moment. After each set I was gasping for air and going slightly light headed. I wasn’t breathing properly as I was doing the squats so I didn’t have enough oxygen in my system to recover. I managed to use a better weight than last week which I felt good about and having my mate there to push me on helped to get through the tough reps. The fourth set was really tough as the drop set didn’t give me much time to recover and I literally went to the point of failure and had to drop the bar on to the safety bars.

I then went back to the leg extensions and they really burned the quads. The final drop set was torture and I had to get up and walk around the gym to stop them from cramping up. I went on to the hamstring curl straight after and my quads were just on fire that I had to get off the machine and do some foam rolling to try and help my quads. I pushed my hamstring to failure but they never feel as bad as my quads do.

I finished with a set of weighted walking lunges around the gym just to completely finish the legs off……which they did! I had to lie on the floor for a while to try and feel a bit better as I thought I was going to throw up!…..I didn’t!

I’m happy I managed to push some better weight and have a much better session than I did last week. I forgot to weigh myself this morning but I will do it tomorrow and see where I am at. At the end of this week I will start a 4 week shred programme ready for my holiday at the end of April.

My Transformation Blog – Day 42 – Catch up & Shoulders

I have been extremely lazy with regards to writing this blog everyday. I’m not sure what it is but I just seem to either forget about it or just not bother which is a bad habit to have and I really need to get out of it! I haven’t posted for about 5 days and I have been quite busy in that time.

I finished by training off last week on the friday. I was going to train chest and back on the Thursday but I was feeling so sore from the previous session especially my legs that I decided to take a rest day. I trained chest and back on the Friday in my garage at home. I had to do it quite early in the morning and make it quite quick as my girlfriend and I had to catch a bus to London for the weekend.

Friday afternoon we got on a bus and travelled about 3 hours to London in order to meet up with her sister and brother in law for his birthday. We got some food at a BBQ place and then went to a concert at the Brixton Academy to watch “Fat Freddys Drop”. It was a good night and I do recommend the band if you look for them on You Tube.

Saturday was spent walking around London doing a treasure hunt which was quite cool as you got text messages and had to figure out puzzles and riddles in order to find certain places. It took us a couple of hours to complete and we walked a good 3-4 miles around london so that was my cardio for the day. My girlfriend and I then had to catch the bus home that night as we had a christening to go to on the Sunday for my god daughter.

We got home around 2am but then the clocks went forward so we only had about 4 hours sleep before having to get up to go to the church for the christening. It was nice to be chosen by my mate to be the god father again (I am also god father to their first child) I do try and take the responsibility seriously although I usually just play games and mess about with them! We then spent sunday afternoon having a meal and then going over to see my girlfriends new baby nephew.

Bank holiday Monday we spent the morning having a lie in as we were both pretty tired from our long weekend so it was nice to catch up on a bit of sleep. The afternoon we went to a local quarry as I had been given a Zip Wire experience for my birthday last year. It was good fun although it was over with quite quickly. I got some footage on my GoPro so I will try and edit a video and maybe link it on here.

I trained shoulders and abs in my garage Monday night as I felt I had to get something done as my diet had not been great over the long weekend. It was only a quick session but it was pretty tough as this week really starts to apply the DTP (Dramatic Transformation Principle) sessions. The session went like this:

  • Barbell Shoulder Press – 5 Sets – 50, 40, 30, 20 ,10 reps
  • Dumbell Rear Raises – 5 Sets – 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 reps
  • 10 sets of sit ups to failure

I also did 10 mins of sprints on the spin bike to get some cardio in. It was a good session but I think i have pulled a muscle in my right shoulder as it is quite sore in some positions. I will just try and massage it a bit and try to not stress it too much this week.

I hope to stay in track with these blogs now as they do help to push me in my workouts and keep myself going with the programme.

Spin Class 23/03/2016

I didn’t do my class last week as I was off work with the flu so I knew whatever I did for today’s classes I would struggle a bit with my fitness. I decided to come up with 3 10 minute challenges to give the class. So after a good warm up the challenges went like this:

  • Challenge 1:
    • As many rounds as possible in 10 minutes of 500m Seated sprint, 200m Seated Climb, 500m standing sprint and 200m standing climb. For this challenge they have to watch their own distances and change whenever they reach the required distance for each discipline. I set the class the target of trying to complete 3 full rounds within the 10 mins.
  • Challenge 2:
    • Every minute on the minute – Seated hill climb and every minute on the minute come up out of the saddle and sprint as hard as you can on the same gear for 10 seconds. Return to a seated position and continue until the 10 minutes are up. Try not to change the gear down at all unless you physically cannot turn the pedals.
  • Challenge 3:
    • Sprint for distance – Seated sprint 40 secs, rest 20 secs, standing sprint 40 secs rest 20 secs and repeat for 5 sets. This is just about sprinting as fast as possible for each sprint with limited rest. I told the class to set themselves a target distance to try and achieve within the 10 minutes just so they had something to aim for.

Overall the challenges worked well and everyone seemed to enjoy them. It brings out the competitive nature in a lot of people and so they tend to push a bit more.

Let me know how you get on and if you have any 10 minute spin challenges of your own!

My Transformation Blog – Day 38 – Arms

Although it wasn’t a great session yesterday my legs are pretty sore today and i’m sure they are only going to get more and more sore as the next day or so goes on! It shows you don’t always need to do loads and loads of work in order to hit the muscles properly.

Today was a Biceps and Triceps workout and it was a straight forward DTP (Dramatic Transformation Principle) workout. It went like this:

  • Straight Bar Cable Curls – 5 Sets of 50reps, 40 reps, 30 reps, 20 reps and 10 reps superset with…
  • Rope Cable Pushdowns – 5 Sets of 50 reps, 40 reps, 30 reps, 20 reps and 10 reps
  • Dumb Bell Curls – 5 sets of 10 reps, 20 reps, 30 reps, 40 reps and 50 reps superset with…
  • Skull crushers – 5 sets of 10 reps, 20 reps, 30 reps, 40 reps and 50 reps

The session only took me about 45 minutes which was good as I went to the gym straight after work and i had a few errands to do before I returned to do my spin classes in the evening. The exercises themselves felt pretty good, I am definately a lot leaner than I was as my veins were popping out all over my arms.

The skull crushers are not one of my favourite movements as I usually feel the weight through my elbows rather than the triceps. I gave it a go though and lightened the weight slightly so that I could focus on the muscle and it seemed to work. I played around with the technique a bit but eventually found a way to hit the muscle more than the elbows.

I enjoyed the session and after the disappointment of my leg session yesterday it was good to bounce back and have a good arm session – so good that i couldn’t shake my protein shake up after as my arms were so pumped.

Cardio for the day was my two spin classes in the evening which very nearly killed me! (check out my spin session in my other blog post). My fitness has suffered a bit but it will come back slowly…..I hope!

My Transformation Blog – Day 37 – Legs

I was really looking forward to todays legs session as I haven’t been able to train legs for over two weeks due to me being ill and the way my sessions have fallen. I enjoy leg days for the challenge and to see how far I can push myself. The session was the following:

  • Leg Extension – 3 sets of 20 reps superset with…
  • Lying Hamstring Curls – 3 sets of 20 reps
  • Barbell Squats – 4 Sets of 30 reps, 20 reps, 10 reps, 10 reps
  • Walking Lunges – 3 sets of 30 steps
  • Leg Extension – 3 sets of 10 – 15 reps superset with…
  • Lying Hamstring Curls – 3 sets of 10 – 15 reps

As much as I was looking forward to this workout I just could not get myself in to it. I felt very weak either from the lack of training legs or I still haven’t recovered fully from being ill although i’m sure I have. The barbell squats were what really pissed me off. I didnt have that much weight on the bar at all but my legs were failing quite quickly and I just didn’t feel very strong at all. It just played on my mind from there on so ruined the rest of the session. I should have changed to the leg press and tried that instead but it was being used so I couldn’t get on it. I went back to the leg extension and hamstring curl machines just because I knew I could get a good contraction in the muscles and take them to failure.

I called the session quits there as my mind was just wondering and getting more and more annoyed about the squats so I was starting to become a bit unproductive in the gym. I drank my protein shake and left the gym.

You do get days like that, you might not be able to work as hard or as heavy as you feel you are capable of but the idea is (unlike what I did) and not let it get to you. Just leave the exercise and try something different instead. If it really isnt your day then just draw a line underneath it, leave it at the gym and come back stronger another day!

My Transformation Blog – Days 35 &36 – Shoulders & Abs

I am posting for yesterday and today in one post as I didn’t do much yesterday so didn’t have much to write about. I was working all day so didn’t have chance to train, I just did some cardio throughout the day and that was it pretty much!

Today I finally managed to get back into the gym and throw some weights about and I was really happy about it! The session was shoulders and abs and went like this:

  • Side raises – 50 reps, 40 reps, 30 reps, 20 reps, 10 reps
  • Side raises – 5 drop sets of 10 reps
  • Barbell shoulder press – 3 sets of 10 reps super set with…
  • Dumbell shoulder press – 3 sets of 10 reps
  • Banded face pulls – 3 sets of 10 reps
  • Dumbell rear flyes – 3 sets of 10 reps superset with
  • Weighted sit ups – 3 sets to failure

The 12 week hardcore transformation programme that I am following is now in week 8 and is starting to incorporate DTP training. For those that don’t know DTP (Dramatic Transformation Principle) is a training protocol created by Kris Gethin and follows a pyramid style of training. It is really tough if you get the weights and rest periods correct but it is also a really good way of getting through a session quickly. The whole of the session above only took me about 40 minutes to do.

The high reps were tough but I managed to get through with some decent weight and pushed myself as hard as I could. The burn you get from high reps is really bad but at the same time gives you such as good feeling! Shoulders hurt more than anything else I think but they will take quite a battering before they hurt. I finished the session with 20 mins on the spin bike just to get some cardio in. I weighed myself again this morning and I was 12 stone 10 lbs so I have lost quite a bit of weight in the time I have been ill so I will just do cardio once a day at the moment just so I don’t lose too much weight.

I’m really glad I am pretty much back to normal and can hit the gym again. It really helps to focus my mind and get away from everything else going on. Leg day tomorrow which will be interesting!!