I caught up with aspiring bodybuilder Alexander Kosztowny to talk fitness, food, and life as a vegan body-builder.
Were you into sports at school?
No. Growing up, I was a heavy-set kid, and not very active at all.
In school, I was very academic, and focused mainly on my studies rather than athletics. I didn’t dread gym class, and always worked hard and enjoyed certain sports like tennis and volleyball, but the lack of variety of activities in gym class limited my view on the variety of types of activities out there.
If I’d tried a weight lifting class, or yoga, or karate, my attitude may have changed earlier in life. My sister was always active, but I come from a family who are not very big on physical activity or sports. Of course, like most, I wish I’d started earlier, but better late than never.
Can you remember what your first experience of a gym was?
I lost a lot of weight in high school with the onset of puberty, and with the gaining knowledge of nutrition, portion control, and cardiovascular activity. When I went to college, I found myself putting a lot of the weight back on, and knew I had to prevent that. I joined a gym, and hired a personal trainer for the first time to help me get back on track.
I absolutely fell in love with pumping iron. I was able to coordinate working out into being a part of my schedule, as opposed to limiting it only to ‘when I have time’ and having a trainer not only motivated me and taught me technique, but also kept me accountable for my actions. He helped me with adding strength while paying attention to form, and meal planning, The excess weight fell off, and I became addicted.
Now I’m in the gym every day, pushing my body and transforming both my health, my appearance, and my outlook.
When did you decide to get serious about your fitness and bodybuilding?
About four years ago. But I’ve only been super-serious for about a year, and I’ve only been extremely strict in terms of diet for about six months. I’m still a beginner.
What’s your aspiration as a bodybuilder?
To get huge. That’s it.
As someone who’s plant-based, I’d also like to show others what’s possible on a non-traditional diet. That there are other forms of nutrition and protein, and you can build muscle, look great, and have tons of energy without harm.
What’s the difference between your body as it is now and the way that you want your body to look?
I’d still call my self thick or chubby-muscular. The interesting thing about bodybuilding is that there never really is an end goal. You just lift and grow bigger and you’re never quite big or strong enough. I’m just trying to push myself as far as I possibly can. It’s exciting to see the changes you can make that way.
What’s your work-out regime like?
I’m in the gym six or seven times a week. This seems excessive to some people, and I know others who only go three or four times a week, and that works for them.
For me, the gym is therapeutic and a stress reliever, as well as a hobby.
I usually spend about one hour doing weight lifting — machines and free weights — and then I wrap up with about 35 minutes of cardio. I focus on one body part per day. It’s a traditional bodybuilding split, so muscles have a chance to rest. This routine works for me — I know some people have luck doing high-intensity, full body workouts, but I like the focus of working each muscle group in isolation.
Do you have a work-out buddy?
Not currently, but I’ve always enjoyed it when I do. It really is vital for really heavy spotting, and the dependability is nice if they’re as motivated as you. If anyone is in Los Angeles and wants to train with me, hit me up!
How important is controlling your diet?
Controlling diet is extremely important. It makes or breaks your progress in the gym. if you lift but don’t eat right, you won’t get anywhere. I’ve seen this happen both for myself and others. When I finally got on the right meal plan, the results happened in no time at all — abs are made in the kitchen, not the gym.
I eat about five times a day, and I’m plant-based, just like Tom Brady. My diet consists of lots of legumes, lentils, tofu, peas, broccoli, peanut butter, protein shakes, and other natural, nutrient-rich foods that contain protein without resorting to animal products.
Besides the ethical and environmental sides of going vegan, I find I have more energy, need less time to recover, and am less sore, as well as having clearer skin.
I count my macros — calories, carbs, proteins, and fats — and eat the same foods every day to stay on track. I’ve pretty much eliminated bread, gluten, alcohol, refined sugars, and beverages besides water from my diet, except for special occasions. I’m super-strict, but do let myself enjoy food.
Are your friends and family supportive of your bodybuilding aspirations?
For the most part.
They’re always impressed at my progress and dedication, but I need a lot of willpower when I have a family who loves to cook, bake, and tempt me with treats.
That’s why having a partner or workout buddy who is on a similar plan is helpful, if you’re lucky enough to find one. It keeps you on track.
Are you competing?
Nope, and no plans to either. But that may change as I grow bigger.
What are some of your priorities for the months ahead?
I’m currently in the best shape I’ve ever been in, so I want to just keep on progressing. It’s a slow process, and takes a lot of time, so you have to be patient.Follow @muscleboy1001
Impulse London is bringing sexy to safer sex
Celebrate the #InternationalCondomDay
13th February is International Condom Day and Impulse London is celebrating it with the ‘Slip it On Me’ campaign. The charity is looking to remind us that condoms are still an important tool to keep us safe from STIs.
Conveniently the day before Valentine’s Day, the International Condom Day (ICD) was created by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF). The foundation’s website describes it as an “innovative and lighthearted way to remind people that wearing a condom can prevent pregnancy and STDs, including HIV”.
To celebrate the date, the guys at Impulse London stripped off their clothes and created this eye-catching campaign. The highlight of the campaign is the importance of being in control of your sexual life. Sex is something you should enjoy and not fear.
“Being safe is sexy, consent is sexy, your body is sexy!”Taofique Folarin – Director of Events at Impulse London
Use it or don’t – it is YOUR choice
Nowadays most STIs are easily treatable or manageable and no longer life-threatening, but the symptoms sometimes can be a pain in the ass (literally).
Testing regularly and using condoms are just two of the many possible ways to keep you and your partners safe.
If having bareback sex is something that causes you anxiety then ‘slip one on’. The last thing you want to be while having sex is tense – especially if you’re bottoming.
Taofique Folarin, Director of Events at Impulse London and one of the models in this campaign, understands that conversations like these “can be tricky to have, but are very important and can be very rewarding” but reminds us that “it is important you do not go against your own truth whilst being open to a conversation”.
“Your sexual health is YOUR priority and YOUR responsibility and it is YOUR decision.”Taofique Folarin – Director of Events at Impulse London
“A piece of rubber may not seem sexy. But the safety it provides (if used correctly) can help prevent not only your body, but your self-esteem and your sex life, from embarking on an unnecessarily painful journey.”Kayden Gray – Director of Advocacy at Impulse London
Do you know how to use condoms?
When asked which advice he would give to a young gay guy just starting out, Kayden Gray, Director of Advocacy at Impulse London, replied that “being confused about sex stuff is super normal, especially since sex ed is not always taught or applicable or diverse enough for people who aren’t straight. As far as putting on a condom goes, the instructions come with every condom pack. What’s even more exciting, you can find a lot of tutorials online which will give you a very clear idea how to do it.”
If you have any doubts on how to use condoms properly or simply want to see a couple of hot guys putting a condom on their dicks take a look at the educational video below created by the New Zealand non-profit organisation Ending HIV:
For more information on how to have a better and safer sex life visit your nearest sexual health clinic.
If you live in London, you can order a free STI test at Sexual Health London. You can do it from the comfort of your home and it’s easy, discrete and free.
Hot Guys3 days ago
Rick Luciano is hitting the gym
Hot Guys2 weeks ago
Going deep with HungerFF
Play Hard1 month ago
Meet Mr Kristofer and Pup Amp
Life & Health1 month ago
Impulse London is bringing sexy to safer sex
Style & Trends12 months ago
What does the Fox say?
NSFW1 month ago
How to navigate a gay sex club
Man Crush3 days ago
King Marti is doing it just for the fans
Hot Guys3 months ago
Hung Young Brit: Creating reality porn