Body Transformation: Brian Turner Packed On 45lbs Of Muscle

Categories: Articles Motivation
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Before Stats
  • Age
  • Weight
    135 lbs
  • Height
  • Body Fat
After Stats
  • Age
  • Weight
    180 lbs
  • Height
  • Body Fat
Editor's Note: Everyone is different and these results may not be typical for the average person. To achieve these results you need to be willing to put in the work both in the gym and in the kitchen. Use this transformation for motivation for you to make the changes you want!
In a little over a year Brian Turner packed on 45 pounds of muscle, staying shredded and maintaining his low bodyfat percentage.

Lifestyle Prior To Change

I was always involved in athletic sports but never lifting. I would spend a lot my free time that wasn’t used by sports by playing video games.

Brian Turner flexing his abs.

What was your low point or turning point?

At the end of my sophomore year in high school and during the summer that year I was getting extremely tired of hearing people tell me that I was “too skinny” and that I needed to “put some fat on those bones”. Especially that last one, because when has it every been appealing to put fat on? Those comments kindled a fire of motivation inside of me.

Were there any unique challenges or circumstances that made your transformation particularly difficult?

I’m a tall guy and therefore I was not looking really big as soon as my shorter friends were due to having longer muscles. This was in a way discouraging but in another way also motivating. It made me realize that I needed to work twice as hard to get bigger because when I was big I would look better and much bigger since I would also be towering my friends.

Transformation timeline:

  • Transformation Start: Started working out at 16, 135lbs.
  • Milestone:  Got my first jump in weight to 150.
  • Milestone: Worked up to 160.
  • Milestone: Finished bulk at 190.
  • Milestone: Cut to 180lbs and 6.5%.
  • Transformation End: Had offers to do many free shoots, and to talk to agents.

Brian's Training And Cardio Approach

What was your weight training approach and split during your transformation?

I actually did not use a split for my transformation, I only just recently started a split. I would work out Mon-Sat with Sunday as my rest day, working one muscle a day very intensely. For a large majority of the transformation I was working in the 6-8 rep range, where I was struggling at the end of every set to get the last rep, that was the perfect weight if I was struggling on the last.

Biceps and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Barbell Curls 3 20
Dumbbell Preacher Curls 3 20
Barbell Curls 3 20
Cable Crunch 3 20
Legs and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Squat 3 20
Standing Calf Raise 3 20
Seated Leg Curl 3 20
Oblique Twist Machine 3 20
Hanging Leg Raise 3 20
Triceps and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Tricep Extension 3 20
Dumbbell Skullcrusher 3 20
One Arm Push Down 3 20
Cable Crunch 3 20
Exercise Sets Reps
Military Press 3 20
Reverse Pec Dec 3 20
Upright Row 3 20
Dumbbell Shrug 3 20
Chest and Abs
Exercise Sets Reps
Dumbbell Bench Press 3 20
Decline Barbell Bench Press 3 20
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 3 20
Dumbbell Flye 3 20
Cable Crunch 3 20
Exercise Sets Reps
Deadlift 3 20
Bent Over Barbell Row 3 20
Lat Pull Down 3 20
Machine Pullover 3 20

Please detail your cardio approach during your transformation?

The training schedule provided above was taken literally from the log I kept while working out, my training style has now been revamped as I have learned new information. This training schedule was during my bulk so it was a lower amount of cardio usually only last 15 minutes for high intensity, or 30 minutes for a medium paced jog. While cutting I was doing HIIT for 9 intervals every other day, and 30-40 minutes of jogging on the days I was not doing HIIT.

Brian Turner

Please list 3 things you learned about exercise, weight training and/or cardio during your transformation that helped you succeed:

  1. You must eat to grow. In the beginning I didn’t realize how paramount this is and how little you will progress if you don’t eat excessive amounts. I had to literally force bites down while trying to not gag while I was bulking, because my body was not used to eating 5000 calories a day. After awhile I got used to it though.
  2. Stretching is extremely important as it stretches and corrects the lining of your fascia which covers all tissue of the human body. If you do not stretch it is harder for your body to grow, and harder for muscle fibers to be added to the muscle.
  3. 8 hours sleep is necessary. Your body needs this time to not concentrate on your living functions (speaking, thinking, chewing, etc.) and concentrate on repairing your central nervous system (CNS) and rebuild your muscle fibers.

How are you currently training, and has your training changed since the completion of your transformation?

I have switched to a split since my transformation technically “ended”, I am still working out Mon-Sat with Sunday as my rest day.

Brian's Diet And Nutrition Approach

Brian Turner side chest pose.What was your diet/nutrition approach during your transformation?

During my bulk I was eating 5-6k calories a day. During a cut I was eating 2700 calories a day. Complex carbs, poly/mono unsaturated fats, and good heaping sources of protein were building blocks to my diet. During my cut I used a carb-cycling diet which means I had no carbs all day except for 70gs digested via a shake immediately after my workout.

Can you provide us with a sample daily eating plan (please be specific):

Bulking Diet

  • Meal 1: Oatmeal (1 scoop ON Gold Standard Whey, 1½ cups water, ¾ cup plain oats, 2 tbsp peanut butter), 1-3 pills fish oil, 1 serving multivitamin, 8-10 vegetables juiced (celery, spinach, parsley, bok choy, bell peppers).
  • Meal 2: 1 slice bread (toasted), 2-3 tbsp peanut butter + ½ scoop ON Gold Standard Whey, 400mg caffeine pills (pre-workout) or cycle between these and Jack3d, 1MR, White Flood (pre-workout).
  • Post-Workout: Immediately drink 3-4 scoops CytoGainer.
  • Meal 3: 4 chicken thighs, 1 large plate of brown rice.
  • Meal 4: 1 chicken breast fried in 1½ tbsp olive oil, 1 medium sized plate of brown rice.
  • Meal 5: 3-4 tilapia filets, 1½ tbsp. of olive oil, 1 medium sized plate of brown rice.
  • Meal 6: 30 almonds, 1 cup cottage cheese.

Were there any diet/nutrition mistakes you made that you learned from?

My diet was pretty clean throughout the whole transformation (and still is) but one thing I suggest to anyone creating their diet is to cut fast food, chips, sodas, candies, and anything with unnecessary sugars or simple carbs in it out of your diet. It won’t do anything but hinder your progress.

Please list 3 things you learned about diet & nutrition during your transformation that helped you succeed:

  1. Eating every 2-3 hours works really well for me, as I become hungry no matter what if I eat every 4-5 hours.
  2. Get 1-1.5gs of protein in per lb. you weigh.
  3. Drink 1 fl oz. of water per lb. you weigh! This is extremely important and often neglected!

Did you allow yourself cheat meals?

I told myself I would allow myself cheat meals every 2 weeks, but I ended up having 2 cheat meals within my year long bulk. They consisted of one burger from In-n-Out w/no ketchup, and the other was half of a carne asada burrito.

What supplements did you use during your transformation?

ON Gold Standard Whey, Cyto Gainer, caffeine, Jack3d, 1MR, White Flood, Xtend, casein, multivitamin, fish oil.

Brian Turner body transformation.

Advice For Others

What are your best 3 tips for someone looking to make their own transformation?

  1. Set yourself a long term goal and reach it. Don’t let anything stop you, make milestones goals that divide your long term goal up into smaller steps.
  2. Be consistent. Create or find yourself a workout routine and do it every week, do not ever skip out this day and that day because you will not make progress if you are not committed. If you say you are working out Mon-Fri then go and make time to workout every Mon-Fri.
  3. Keep a workout log and write down how many sets/reps/weight used on every exercise. Next week when you do the same exercises strive to make progress by increasing the reps or weight.

How do you stay motivated? What advice would you give to someone who’s having trouble staying on track?

I have a few extrinsic and intrinsic sources of motivation. For one I work as a personal trainer and therefore I must mirror the service that I am offering by being in good shape. Comments from people give me a huge boost in motivation, and the fact that if I take my shirt off somewhere I know that people are thinking (or telling me) that I look great or big keeps me motivated. I love being healthy and I love exercising it’s a high that’s unlike any that you can receive from substances or anything else which has become an addiction to me, which I think is quite an excellent addiction.

For a person who’s having trouble staying motivated I would give a few tips. Get a workout partner and come to the gym with them every day, compete with each other but also cheer each other on there is nothing like your buddy getting 3 plates of deadlifts, and then it's your turn to deadlift and step up to the bar. Set yourself a goal and envision how happy it will make you when you reach that goal, think about the competition you will win, or the comments and adornment you’ll receive. One thing that I always wanted was to have a chest large enough that a girl could lay her head on it while we watch a movie and she would have a nice comfortable pillow, I got to that point and I could not be happier.

More From Brian Turner

What is your life like now that you’ve made a transformation?

It’s great, I receive compliments all the time from people whether it be other lifters complimenting on my symmetry or striations or ladies telling me I look hot. I love every minute of my life and I can’t wait for the next day in the gym so that I can progress more and more.

What motivates you currently to keep improving yourself?

I want to compete in bodybuilding contests, continue fitness modeling, look even better for my clients, and continue improving myself in and out. I’m also striving to get a company to sponsor me. Those things keep me motivated.

Anything else you would like to share?

I loved this interview and I’m glad that you have read this far, I really do appreciate any and all of my fans and I never hesitate to answer and questions when contacted be one!

Also here is a workout video from when I was 17, the most important part is the beginning where I show my abs workout which people quite often ask me for:

My Workouts Including An Abs Workout

How can people contact you?

Cory rogers
Posted on: Tue, 06/09/2015 - 18:36

Hey Bryan I know its 2015 but please answer my question bro did you really do cable crunches for this transformation and this often and why you choose a bro split wouldn't it have been better too do something like legs push pull ?

Posted on: Tue, 02/11/2014 - 03:36

You only had 2 cheat meals in an entire year?!

Posted on: Thu, 10/25/2012 - 10:08

I'm 26 male from Chicago, Illinois I just got married and we had our first child this year, I stopped lifting when we had our boy, although I wasn't Ever really that big anyway. I just started going back to the gym and my body type is like yours.... Fast metabolism and lean, I'm only a little over 5"10 I really appreciate this whole interview it's given me the direction I need for my own transformation. I knew it was all about the eating its got to cost a lot to eat like that though first it? 414 502 4277

Posted on: Thu, 10/11/2012 - 05:50

This article was amazing Brian!! Never before had such inspiration and motivation. Now I feel that there is hope, even for me! I would love to have your help, but it will be hard since I live in Sweden.

Posted on: Sat, 08/04/2012 - 04:37

Great transformation, Brian!

I was wondering how long does your one workout last? Since each muscle group has only about 3 exercises (+ 1 abs exercise). I imagine you rest between sets/exercises 60-120 seconds?

The thing is I feel guilty or lazy if I work out only 30 minutes or so. Maybe I shouldn't ...

Posted on: Fri, 04/27/2012 - 13:34

did you train every day during your bulking up process? and did you take protein even on your rest days?? please i would just like to know. i am very impressed with your transformation

Posted on: Sat, 02/18/2012 - 20:09

Your workout routine looks Great but I am 16 weighing 143 lbs and i want to tone up and build muscle mass do you think this would be the best workout routine for me? and also how long was your workout for each day thanks

Mark G
Posted on: Tue, 02/07/2012 - 18:30

About how much calories/protein would you recommend me to take in day? I'm 135lbs and 5'7 and I'm going to start working out 4 days a week like I used to

Posted on: Thu, 01/05/2012 - 05:08

any reason for 20 reps?

Brian Turner
Posted on: Tue, 11/01/2011 - 12:01

Check out the new website

Brian Turner
Posted on: Mon, 09/12/2011 - 14:09

Hey guys, I'm sorry I haven't been able to answer all the questions in the comments as this is not the most efficient way to get a hold of me.

There are a few ways to stay in touch with me: (subscribe)

Also, I noticed a lot of requests for workout routines and meal plans customized for each person and I'd like to just put it out there that I am an ACE certified professional. I charge 30 for either or 50 for both a workout and a diet plan. Contact me on either the youtube or the facebook page (if you have neither then e-mail me).

Thanks guys and keep progressing!

P.S. I'd like to disclaim that the reps and sets are not correct in this article, thanks!

Posted on: Tue, 09/06/2011 - 20:42

Hi Brian well am probably the same shape you were before going to the gym ,but here comes my question isn't 20 reps used when trying to pack/shape (used for definition ) the muscle not making it grow .

Thank you

Posted on: Tue, 06/28/2011 - 21:26

Hey Brian Im sixteen years old. Im 6'1" and weigh 167 lbs. but unfourtanetly its not all muscle although it doesn't look as though I'm "fat". Im told all the time that Im skinny. So this summer I decided that Im going to put on as much muscle as I possibly can by the next school year. To make everyone go wow!!! But I don't know what to do. As the same for me as one of the previous commentors I still lve at home and onfined to the food here. I do however take creatine on an 8 week cycle. I also take whey protein after i work out and drink 1 gallon of water every day. I was wondering if you could help me with this undertaking whwich is similar to what you did when you were 16. Thanks.

Posted on: Sat, 03/12/2011 - 18:03

hey Brian,

how did you get 6 meals a day while you were at school

Posted on: Tue, 03/08/2011 - 18:09

Hey Btrian,

Being you are only 17 how did balance your 6 meals a day while you sre at school?

Posted on: Thu, 02/10/2011 - 16:35

Hey Brian mate,

So incredibly impressed by your results mate. You look fantastic in your modeling shots posted! I'm so freaking inspired seeing how you've progressed.

I have no trouble putting on muscle - partly because I was always a fat kid at school (110kg when I was 15!) so when I start training seriously I am eating perfectly for the effort. I'm currently 206lbs and 6'1, but my problem has always been what you call the 'cutting' phase. I have two quick questions regarding this.

Firstly, do you think there is an optimal time to complete cardio (HIIT or otherwise)? Ie in the morning before breakfast, or 2 hours before training, or anything else like that.

Secondly, your bulking diet is great but what were you eating on your cutting phase? That's what really interests me, I'm sure in always eating too large potions when trying to 'cut'.

Thanks in advance bro, legend.

Posted on: Fri, 02/04/2011 - 20:02

Hey Brian. Im 16 and I take weight lifting very serious. I weight 175lbs right now and im 6'3 i have a 6 day workout plan:
mon. arms:bicep/triceps,forearm,shoulders
wed. legs
thrus. arms:bicep/triceps,forearm,shoulders
fri. chest/back
sat. legs
sun. rest,but sometimes ill do legs or biceps if i have time

Please tell me what you think some of my goals are:
bench 225 by summer time
improve my squating technique
and gain and 1 inch in my arms every 30 days.

Im trying to gain as much musle mass as possiable
I want to be weighing atleast 200 by the end of summer.
I now i can do it.

Could you give me some advice and some meal plans to spend up my progress.

Posted on: Mon, 01/31/2011 - 10:56

Hi, Brian! You transformation is really impressive! Im 17, and i weight about 134lbs and my height is 5'5. Beening shorter and floowing your workout plan, would I look some what odd? You much taller then me beening 6'1 you look tall and slim and fit. But, i dont wanna look stocky ( if thats a word ) You get what im trying to ask ya? Thanx :)

Oh and I think there is about 5 months tell summer, or a little more. Do you think I could get to where you are at by then? or atleast close.

My last question is the protein " Creatine " any good? as in bulking you up? THNX

Posted on: Sat, 01/29/2011 - 23:52

@brian: during your bulking phase did you gain a noticeable amount of excess abdominal fat? & was your cutting phase just Atkins?

Brian Michael Turner
Posted on: Tue, 01/25/2011 - 14:57

Hey Ross and Austin, send me an e-mail and I'll be able to help you out!

Posted on: Sun, 01/16/2011 - 07:11

hi your transformation was really impressive and i intend to test your routine and perhaps adjust it for me. i am currently 17 and 5'8" and 10 stone. i have been going to the gym inconsistently for around 2yrs and now i really want to take it seriously and be committed.
i was hoping you could highlight to me how i should eat with consideration to the fact im still at school and at home so can't really go out and buy all different meals from what my mum has planned...
lastly wondering what supplements i should take, i have creatine which i have 4 times a day and am on the 5th day which is apparently the last. is there anything else i should have and how long should i bulk for or is that my own decision?

hope u can reply soon so i can get started at the gym,
thanks very much.

Posted on: Thu, 01/13/2011 - 14:41

hey man, im currently 5'10" and 140lbs, im trying to get to a solid weight of around 165. do you think you could help me out on what my diet plan should be?

Brian Michael Turner
Posted on: Sun, 01/09/2011 - 22:09

@ Chris: There's no foods that "make you skinnier" its all about calories in vs calories out. You could technically eat twinkies all day as long as the amount you ate was less than your burned for your energy. So say your maintenance ( amount that allows you not to gain or lose weight ) is 2500 calories, if you eat 2200 calories you'll lose 300 calories of weight a day ( 1lb of fat = 3500 calories ).

Take a Multivitamin for your vitamin needs.

@ PJ: It's all about flexibility. Stretch everyday after your workout, and practice ATG ( ass to grass/ground ) squats on your leg days you'll eventually be able to get that kind of depth. Keep presssing hard and you'll progress. I'm at 225x12 for 3 sets of ATG Squats as of yesterday.

@ Shane: This regiment I followed for the last few weeks of my cut and have been following the same muscle groups since then until now. This article is actually incorrect though as the sets were of 12 reps each, except for deads which was 6 rep sets.

@ Nick: If your only lifting three days a week then do cardio on the off days somewhere like 20-30 minutes of medium intensity jogging. This serves to strengthen your cardiorespiratory/vascular system. If your trying to put on muscle I would increase the lifting days to 5 or 6 if you could.

@ Tom: There are so many strategies and diets. Keep lifting the same as you are now on your bulk, but clean your diet up and you need to eat less calories than your maintenance to lose weight. For cardio I would do one day of 30 minutes medium intensity jogging, and one day of HIIT ( high intensity interval training ) and repeat, sunday as the off day.

@ Camdry:

Thank you kindly sir!

@ Zaid: That's quite a hefty request that usually costs quite a good bit of money. I am a certified personal trainer so I'm qualified to do that for you if you would like in return for a fee, but that's up to you, send me an e-mail if you'd like. If not go ahead and follow my workout posted.

@ For some lifts its more about the feel of getting the muscle worked well instead of the form being perfect. While I'll agree that 90% of the time the form should be perfect there are a few times when a bit of botched form will help quite a bit.

Posted on: Tue, 01/04/2011 - 12:26

Pretty solid dude. Why do you not pull the bar all the way to your sternum during the bent over rows though?

Posted on: Mon, 12/27/2010 - 16:36

Hi Brian, would like to ask you if you can give me a gym and diet plan according to my body I am 178 cm and weigh 55 Kg.
Many thanks

Posted on: Sun, 12/26/2010 - 12:39

great genetics!! so much potential to do more here great job!

Posted on: Fri, 12/24/2010 - 18:31

hey bro
looking in great shape! keep it up! man i was just wondering, ive been bulking for like 6 months and im like as big as i wana get and now im just wondering what aprroach should i take towards cutting, like i wana do cardio but i dont want to loose my hard earned mass, also what diet should i follow?
Cheers tom

Posted on: Fri, 12/24/2010 - 09:06

Hi Brian

Would you mind just running through with me how much cardio you should do each week when trying to bulk ? Im currently doing a three day split but very confused how much to do ? And whether it should be on the same does as weight lifting ?

Much appreciated Nick

Posted on: Wed, 12/22/2010 - 18:05

Roughly how long did you do the posted routine for and is it correct that you did 6x20 biceps curls? Thanks

Posted on: Wed, 12/22/2010 - 10:55

congrats on ur transformation!
your squats are crazy!!!!!! how do you get so low, any tips?

Posted on: Tue, 12/21/2010 - 15:20

First off let me just say that video of you working out gets me so pumped for the transformation that I want to do of my body for the summer. I'm 16 and I really want to get a body just like yours before summer comes which is 7 months away. I play football for my school and in the off season I' a very active person I dont sit around all day but my question is could you tell me like the foods i should eat to get skinnier and if theres any kind of vitamin I could take to grow give me the nutrients I need so I could grow a little taller since im only 5'5

Brian Michael Turner
Posted on: Tue, 12/21/2010 - 14:45


I would personally stay awake from Cell Tech as it has 75 grams of sugar per serving! You should just buy plain creatine monohydrate and a mass gainer, and drink them both right after your workout.

Good luck!

Posted on: Tue, 12/21/2010 - 00:48

Hi Brian,

I work out 6 days every week and currently im taking nitrotech, it's getting somewhere. But i want bigger muscle and more definition. Someone recommended me to take cell-tech instead, what do you think?when's the best time to take supplement?

Brian Michael Turner
Posted on: Mon, 12/20/2010 - 15:53

@ Balaji: well Branched Chain Amino Acids and Amino Acids are the same, are protein is made up of amino acids which is in your shake already so neither of those at the same time. Glutamine would be your best bet, while it is an amino acid, studies show that it, in abundnace, can improve your recovery and whatnot.


Posted on: Mon, 12/20/2010 - 01:53


Which one is ideal to take with protein shake?

1. Glut-amine or
2. BCCA or
3. Amino Acids

(ON products)

Brian Michael Turner
Posted on: Sat, 12/18/2010 - 04:16

@ Wael: You need to start lifting heavier. Keep a log of the lifts and weights you do, and strive to make progress every week. So if you get 75lb dumbbells next week aim for 80lb dumbbells or even just 2 more reps with the 75lb's. It takes time give yourself time. Also eat alot you need to eat to grow.

@ Ben: Thanks bruddah! I would say I've had great success with both but personally I've had more success with my split. It really comes down to what your body reacts to better. Try both out. You should be eating the same amount regardless as either type of training should be at the same intensity.

Reply if you guys have more questions!

Posted on: Mon, 02/28/2011 - 17:24

ok sounds cool.and as far as carbs ive heard that if u eat them too late in the day like at dinner time and later that your body will store them as fat is this true?Because im trying to bulk and i want to make gains but at the same time retain as little fat as possible.

Posted on: Sun, 09/11/2011 - 19:15

Hey Brian, I am currently 5'9, 14 and 127 lbs. I was wondering what your meal plan was for cutting weight.

Posted on: Fri, 12/17/2010 - 12:35

hey brian
your transformation was crazy 6'1 and im trying to bulk up.ive been training for about a year and im pretty toned.would you suggest to stay with a 4 day split or to isolate a body part for each day like you did?and if u isolate one body part a day will that effect how much food you should be taking in per day?

Posted on: Thu, 12/16/2010 - 16:19

my body seems like Braian's body before workouts but i already take Gold Standars Whey Protien right now and i do workouts 6 dyz per week
whats your openion if i take Myoplex Deluxe . my problem is when i do workouts my body got definetins and get stronger but not larger and i need somthing to make it larger