Richie Brew

He wrote up for you the horrendous 6-12-25 protocol, & brought the appalling Guillotine Press to ChestSunday, (amongst other things). We caught up with LDNM team member, TGE’s training partner & acquaintance; the ever-tedious Rich Bennett, (aka Richie Brew)

When and why did you start working out?

I’ve always been relatively sporty – even as a child, I played football to a reasonable level but excelled at basketball and some martial arts. Moving on from this I fell in love with boxing, but as a very small child with exceptionally poor genetics, I took up basic strength training at around 14-15 years old, doing pushups and chin ups for hundreds of sets and reps at a time. There was a pretty big gap between that and actually stepping foot into a gym, which didn’t happen until I was in my early 20’s and still always around my busy sporting schedule of basketball and boxing 4-5 times a week. I made the decision at uni at about the age of 21/22 that my enjoyment at the gym, outweighed my enjoyment of my preferred sports, as I was constantly having issues with my knees and shoulders. I decided to ditch basketball & boxing, and take up the gym to put on some serious size. At the time, I was 6 foot 3 and 10 ½ stone. It was needed.

Like most, I pretty much trained like an idiot, chest and arms all.the.time(!!) with no real regard to technique. I learned quickly though that incorporating other body parts and correct form would create a better balance, while eating (literally!) everything in sight, I put on around 3 stone in 2 years. I was 16 ½ stone at my absolute bulky pomp…

I guess, again, like most, my reasons to start weight training properly were various. Mainly, a lack of self confidence, I was such a skinny kid it was unreal and I found most social aspects of life uncomfortable and at one point I remember it being my biggest nightmare to stand out in a crowd (now, it’s the opposite!). It was a great social plane to meet new people too and, from training and going to the gym, I have built lifelong friendships with likeminded individuals…and I don’t mean likeminded to go throw weights around and nothing else, but people that are in the game of self improvement, in various aspects of life.

I didn’t start to really take nutrition seriously though until I was in my mid twenties, and only then did I realise I was missing a serious trick. But, better late than never!

What motivates you to work out?

Tough one, working out is now embedded in my lifestyle and is almost like brushing my teeth or having a shower, I’ll now always find time to hit the gym, regardless of how busy my life can get at times. But, I guess my main motivator is self improvement, knowing that each and every time I step into the gym, I can improve myself, one rep, one set at a time. I like to improve my knowledge of a subject I have a genuine, unforced interest in and love even more putting it into practice and seeing how well I can use that knowledge to improve that aspect of my life. I mostly train at 5:30am before I get to work, so being motivated to get out of bed and into the gym when it’s cold and dark outside is also a factor. If I’m getting up that early, I better make it count!

Worst thing about working out?

Easily timing it around my working day, as stated before, most of the time I have to go either really early in the morning or after work at a gym in the city. I have a pretty high pressured job that involves national and international travel as well as some long office hours, so, organisation is the key message here. I always say it, but failing to prepare, is preparing to fail. Also, I have had some pretty constant challenges with injuries in my time. I have to work around two very bad knees, a dodgy shoulder, and horrific genetics. One of the worst things/pet hate about working out is when people see me enjoying myself, out, socializing having a drink or out to dinner with people and they come out with something stupid like “yeah, it’s alright for you, you can eat whatever you want and still look like that”…if only they knew or had a tiny inkling of an idea of what it takes for me to look how I do!

How often do you currently work out (including cardio)?

I work out around 5-6 times a week and usually incorporate a few city sessions with the always boring and arrogant co-founder of LDN Muscle TGE. I’ll either train mornings or after work with aforementioned city shredder at City Athletic. If I’m really dialling in, then I’ll do separate early am LISS sessions, but usually incorporate HIIT post weight training, as optimising and using my time wisely at the gym with my busy schedule is pretty important. It may not be truly optimal, but, being flexible is just as important. I like to train my bigger muscle groups at the weekend though. Usually save legs for Friday night or Saturday and it isn’t Sunday without an LDNM ChestSunday!

What is your diet like?

Not always perfect but something I have really had to work hard at to make proper improvements to body composition and overall health. Tweaking a few things with my diet and experimenting with various methods have really helped me with my understanding. Plus, a lot of courses and reading have really put the importance of nutrition under the spotlight for me. Quite simply, due to poor genetics, if I don’t look after my diet, it doesn’t take long for my physique to take a hit. Don’t get me wrong though, I do enjoy my moments of weakness and we can’t all be perfect all the time ;o) Usually, I have a very flexible approach to dieting though. I’d say its somewhere between the clean eaters and the IIFIYM folks.

Favourite supplement?

So many. Multi vit. Vit D. Pro-biotic. Omega 3, creatine monohydrate and whey. Need all of the mentioned!! I’ve been pretty consistent with these for the last two years and thinking about it, I can’t actually remember the last time I even had a cold or flu type illness. Looks like trying to be aesthetic has its health benefits!

Favourite work out?

Has to be chest a la ChestSunday. Or, I find I get a very sadistic enjoyment out of smashing my legs to pieces.

Best body part?

Genuinely don’t have a favourite. Unfortunately, nothing stands out that much to me

Worst body part?

I thought about this and could literally critique everything to the point of dislike. However, I actually have NO GLUTES. I really hate that… and my calf muscles just won’t grow!

Hobbies and interests?

Outside of work and the gym, I really enjoy watching boxing, whether it be going to fights or watching on the TV. Like the gym, I’m constantly reading up on it in my spare time. I’m also pretty sociable & family orientated too. Plus, the usual boring stuff; sports in general, clothes, cars, footwear, holidays and the odd timepiece.

Other notable points?

Sporting wise, I can row 500m in 1:23.2 seconds on a concept2 indoor rowing machine. It is to my understanding, that that is pretty good (I’m not a rower) and somewhere near the top 50 times in the world, certainly around top 10 in the UK, it was pure brute force and poor technique that got me there (I was sick after). My PB bench press is 160kg, squat 180kg and dead lift 210kg. I can’t do any of them now!

Sure I’ve bored you enough already. But, if you wanted some more or have any questions…feel free to follow me on twitter: @richiebrewldnm or Instagram: @richiebrew23
RB