You’re no doubt familiar with a typical body transformation feature. Take an out of shape subject, put him through hell in the gym several days of the week, make him eat packets of chicken all day and behold the results 10-12 weeks later.
Our own Max Olesker did something similar in 2014 with dramatic results.
These features are often impressive to witness but can often feel a little removed from reality. How relevant and achievable are they in the real world?
At best, they are structured in a way that feels very hard for the amateur sustain. Both in terms of training schedules and the kind of extreme diet that would make anyone miserable.
At their very worst, they put short-term results ahead of health.
They also tend to target an artificially muscular look that many men (and women for that matter) don’t actually want.
So what about a 10 week routine that focuses instead on all elements of functional fitness? Designed to get you in the best shape of your life, not just for a before and after photo? (Although, yes, there will be one of them too.)
A routine that’s demanding but doable, built around short, intense workouts you can fit into a busy week.
That is scientifically designed to put strength, definition and athletic fitness and performance and prioritises healthy eating throughout.
And is also intended to set up habits and patterns that can be integrated into normal life once the 10 weeks are up. In theory at least.
Well, we've teamed up with the experts at Pete Fraser Fitness with just this in mind: a scientific 'amateur to athlete' experiment using a lapsed gym goer with a stubborn spare tyre and a lot of Christmas damage to undo as our guinea pig – Esquire's Digital Editor, Will Hersey.
“We've developed a 10 week plan using proven scientific principles of progression identical to those used by professional athletes," explains Pete Fraser.
"The full plan or “macrocycle” as it’s called refers to the overall plan where athletes work towards a competition, usually over a 6 to 12 month period. We don't have six months on this plan, so we’re using an identical format over our 10 week macrocycle.
"Our focus is not competition so it will be purely to see how much fitness, strength and muscular definition can be achieved using a proper, scientifically proven fitness plan structure."
So there it is. Head over to Pete's blog for more details on the plan itself but follow our weekly diary right here to monitor how the plan progresses and any useful lessons learned along the way.