Training for a powerlifting meet meant heavier weights for Chris, but a torn shoulder put a stop to his ambitions. Carving out another path, and a new physique, was the only option.


Chris Elkins Transformation



Instagram: @chris_elkins

Height: 5’6


Age: 30
Weight: 170lbs
Body fat: 21%


chris elkins before transformation



Age: 31
Weight: 142lbs
Body fat: 7%


1 Broken ambition

I fell in love with powerlifting after my first meet, but while bulking hard for my next, I tore my labrum in my shoulder while benching. It needed surgery and kept me out of the gym for 6 months. It was depressing gaining 25lbs of fat and losing my muscle.

2 Getting started

I started training my abs in my teens. Once I joined the Marines, I continued my interest in fitness. I didn’t start lifting until 2012 at the age of 27. I was looking for a challenge to scratch my competitive itch and the gym gave me that.

3 Outside of lifting

Besides the gym, I am a part time poker player, comic book reader and I love getting stuck into an immersive video game.

4 A new path

I needed to adjust my goal if I was to scratch my competitive itch and get back in the gym. I turned to natural bodybuilding as I wouldn’t have to lift so heavy. I managed to turn pro just a year after getting injured.

5 Team Chris

My training partner is the best. He films my workouts, picks me up at my house every morning and keeps the pace up in the workouts. I also rely heavily on my friends like Matt Ogus (YouTube influencer) and Christopher Barakat

6 Total recovery

I like to completely rest on rest days. I normally train at 6am so I like to sleep in on my rest days and recover.

7 Flexible foods

I practice flexible dieting. In the off-season I eat intuitively with a loose protein goal and while prepping for a show I track my macros strictly. I enjoy eating out but am sure to choose food that is easily trackable and consistent each time I order.

8 The numbers

My current training program is called MaX-Hype and I train for 90 minutes, 2 days on, one day off, 4 days on, one day off and repeat for a total of 6 training days out of 8. I use weekly periodization and cycle between 3 rep ranges for compound lifts.


chris elkins after transformation


9 Motivational music

I rotate between hip-hop and other random artists with unique sounds – Marian Hill, for example.

10 Cutting edge workout

Day 1 – Upper
Day 2 – Lower
Day 3 – Rest
Day 4 – Chest and arms
Day 5 – Quads and adductors
Day 6 – Back and Delts
Day 7 – Hams and Calves
Day 8 – Rest
Repeat (with variation on rep range and exercises)

11 Morning fuel

My typical breakfast is an omelette with 5 servings of egg beaters, half a serving of reduced fat cheese and 3 pieces of Canadian bacon (ham)

12 Pre-workout cookie

My favorite pre-workout is PEScience Prolific and I have this with 3 Oreos just before I train.

13 Night cap

Before hitting the sack, I like to eat a serving of Greek yogurt which contains a nice blend of whey and casein protein. This aids in my muscle recovery while I sleep

14 Staple proteins

I love to eat double cheese burgers with 96/4 lean beef to hit my protein intake and to add variety. There’s only so much chicken breast I can eat as my main protein source.

15 Quote for life

“The harder I work the luckier I get” – I love this quote because I’ve found it to be true in my life over the years.

16 Winning the future

I now coach with my business, ‘CuttingEdge Physiques’ and want to help as many people get into the shape of their life. Eventually, I’d love to win the Pro lightweight class at WNBF Worlds so I’ll keep plugging away to create a bigger, more aesthetic physique on stage.


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