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In this editors cut of the Mike Thurston - My Journey story, Mike openly talks about his time competing, why he no longer desired to compete, as well as what and who motivates him, what the future holds and more....

Video Transcript -

my life……
This is thing, I've never taken steroids before right, never have I, swear on my life, and there's a lot of people on my youtube channel wall I would say there's a large chunk of them who probably think I am or have done at some point.

I've competed twice before the first time was in 2014 second time 2015 and the reason for me competing was, I think for me it was more just to get the experience out of it because I've never done something like that before.

I've never gone through such a disciplined and rigorous prep, and I think as well for me to be a coach, it just adds a lot more to your knowledge and experience if you've gone through the process yourself.

You know not only what is required from the training and nutrition but just the mental aspects of it as well.

I think like most people do the first time you do a competition you make a lot of mistakes.

I didn't have a coach I didn't have, I was designing everything for myself the training the nutrition so there was a few, I think the biggest mistakes I made was just under eating a little bit maybe doing a little bit too much cardio.

But never had I ever been so disciplined before my life obviously

I did that for a eight-week 12-week prep but on the day of the competition that was the leanest that ever been.

I lost a bit of size but I was very happy with the way I looked so the second time we decided to compete it was more so just to have that goal once again because that was the one thing which I couldn't match after I'd done that first competition.
I tried to you know, obviously get myself into that that condition again but I couldn't without having that goal of being on stage again and I had my friends and co-workers as well, they were like come on Mike you should probably do it again because in the first competition I placed third and I thought you know what maybe I've got a chance to maybe get top 2 which I thought was perfectly possible.

What was interesting the second time around for whatever reason, maybe because I was doing the WBFF I guess it had got more attention and more people had signed up and entered the competition.

I did the muscle model and there's the fitness model muscle model I was kind of in-between and I got there and everyone was massive having like 10 kilos more of lean muscle on me and I got then I just thought this is a joke.

Because it wasn't regulated there was no testing and it was almost just a matter of right okay whose willing to take most steroids because that's what it is these days.
if you want to get yourself to the very extremes you are gonna have to take some some dosage of steroid you know because everyone else is doing it and that was when it was just clear to me that it wasn't something which I was passionate about or something I believed in you know.

Especially is it's just a completely unlevel playing field.

You know if you're a completely natural athlete competing with all these people who've been taking god knows what you have no chance.

So after that experience and you know I didn't obviously place because I just, I couldn't, I couldn't match those guys who I was in the same category with.

I just decided it's it's not for me it's not something that I want to be forced into and you know a situation where I have to take something in order to have that chance of, of winning and it was after that competition I decided I'm never gonna compete again unless it's a natural show which is fully tested.

Quiet a lot of people ask me this question you know who who do you look up to in terms of who I get my knowledge from.

It's often those individuals who are a lot older than me so they've been in the game for a while, so people who have often have their own businesses they've at some point in their life they've been in good condition they know how to get in good condition and they're just generally very good role models.

But in terms of where I get my inspiration from.

I don't really need to look for external sources of motivation or look up to people the motivation definitely comes from within me and a lot of the time I'm most motivated when I let myself go a little bit a little bit slack with training or nutrition.

I see my physique slip a little bit it's often the case I get a bit slack with the nutrition so I'll probably put a little bit more body fat than usual when I start to see the definition slip a little bit I'm just like

"whooa, what’s going on there"

Like that's that's not acceptable so I'll see myself in the mirror I'm like now I'm gonna sort this out.

There's a lot of people who are, they're really into the science and there is there's a, there's a fine line you you can't just go by what the studies have shown because the studies aren't always done with you know bodybuilders often done with just the average person and you need to have this this balance of understanding the science behind why are you doing what you're doing.

You know the training and the nutrition but the experience is also very important because that teaches you, with the experience I've had with all of my clients watching the effects of a specific training program or specific nutrition approaches can be, you know sometimes completely different to what the studies have shown.
it really went to the next level once we opened our own studio we called our place and I was 23 at the time when I had my own gym which is crazy because everyone's just like whoa okay Mike's pretty serious about this.

Both of us had loads of clients at that point and we were pretty well-known in Newcastle but we were training out for the gyms, I owe them a lot for letting us train from their premises.

But it wasn't in our eyes it wasn't kind of that the place we wanted we wanted our own place.

We spent a good few months looking about potential studios where we could have our headquarters that was hard work having your own gym is a nice thought but it's a hell of a lot of work.

In a year's time I definitely see myself, obviously doing the same but I would like to have a team of people behind me because my journey has been a very individual one and it's to a point now where I'm trying to do everything by myself, you know I'm doing YouTube by myself, filming, editing, answering emails, putting programs together advertising, social media it's all a little bit overwhelming now.

I feel like what I need to be doing is focusing on my strengths so I'm generating content but at the same time I need to be perfecting my craft and expanding my knowledge.

So I need to spend a lot of time investing into learning new things and allowing other people to take control of the tasks which I don't necessarily need to be spending all my time on and I think I want to be in a situation where I'm constantly surrounded by people.

Because if you are, you know you go into the gym you're self-employed or you work from home it can be quite a lonely scenario which I definitely learned last year from having my own studio up in Newcastle where I was constantly surrounded by people.

I moved down to London and I'm like, right I'm gonna smash YouTube I'm living by myself so I can concentrate and do my own thing I'm in this new environment well you know I've moved away from all my friends day-in day-out I wasn't really you know mingling with other people and it became a very you know lonely profession.
if you are in the situation where you're not getting your other needs fulfilled socially that can lead you to become a little bit depressed and if you're depressed that can then lead you to eat some of the things that you shouldn't be eating and it's all a little bit of a downward spiral.

So I think for me in a year's time I want to be in a situation where I have a team behind me where I'm meeting with them every day you know for them to help motivate me and get the best from me and for you know my brand to really want for my name as well to really be out there for the masses to see.

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