LiftHacks 100%. I was at 142 last year and couldn’t seem to figure it out on my own…they have helped me immensely. I dropped weight, gained serious muscle, and learned about nutrition! I’ve now stayed around 125 and feel strong and the most confident I’ve ever been.
I began training with LiftHacks in November 2015, after reaching out online. I followed one of their client’s fitness and powerlifting journey on social media and was truly amazed with her strength and physique, and knew that I wanted to adopt a similar style of training. At that point, I was overweight and not very confident or comfortable with my body, so my first goal was to lose weight and body fat. My LiftHacks coach immediately helped me redefine my self image and relationship with training and nutrition, stressing that it’s more about how I FEEL rather than how I look. She introduced me to macro counting, reminding me that food is fuel for my workouts and that I could still eat the foods that I love, but in moderation. I adopted that mindset and my confidence began to increase – not just in the gym, but everyday life. My workouts got better each week and I began lifting more than I ever thought I could.
In the Spring, my goal changed – instead of wanting to lose weight, I decided I wanted to get stronger instead. When I told my coach about my change in goals and mindset, she was so supportive and knew exactly how to adjust my training program to reach my goals. From there, we set a date in August for a mock powerlifting meet so that I could test my maxes to see how far I had progressed. I’m so happy to say that my numbers jumped like crazy. I used to squat 85lbs, I PR’d with 185lbs. I wasn’t even benching the bar before training with LiftHacks, at my mock meet I hit 75lbs. I used to deadlift 135lbs, and I pulled 215lbs at my mock meet with ease.
Since my mock meet, my coach and I have set new training and nutrition goals for me to achieve. I am working towards my initial goal of weight/fat loss while continuing to build my strength in the gym, with hopes of competing in my first powerlifting meet in 2017. The continuous support and positivity I receive from my coach has pushed me to reach my goals, and not feel discouraged if I ever have a bad day at the gym or a non-macro friendly cheat meal.
I’m incredibly happy with how far I’ve come, both physically and mentally, since I first started working with LiftHacks, and can’t wait to see more strength and confidence gainz to come in the future.”
– Shay Kumar
Transformation credit to LiftHacks and my amazing coach, Justin Reeson, who over the past 20 weeks has helped me achieve my dream body. Through this process I’ve gained so much strength, confidence, and most of all, happiness. I’ve discovered my passion for health and fitness and realized i’m capable of anything I set my mind to. I’m so happy I decided to start this journey with you and can’t wait to see where it takes me.
This has been the toughest yet most enjoyable meet prep to date, and I could not have done it without my coach and friend Justin Reeson. I put so much trust into him for this prep, and he came through right till the end with beautiful attempt selections and thigh slaps.
Hey so I’ve never really posted one of these but I really want to thank LiftHacks coaches Justin Reeson and Maggie Morgan for this progress. The left was November 15 2015 and I took the right on January 3 2016. Transformation credit to LiftHacks. I started out weighing 85 kg and I’m currently 79.7 kg. If I can do this in 8 weeks, I can’t wait to see what’s coming my way this year.
When I first contacted LiftHacks I was very specific about my goals: I wanted to gain more inches on my butt, lose inches off my waist, and not gain any size on my back or shoulders. I was extremely clear that if I saw my lats or traps grow in a way that made me look ‘manly’ then I would quit my program that same day.
Thankfully, that day has never come.
I have been training with LiftHacks for several months now. I am really happy with the balance that their programs provide (they makes working out a part of your life, rather than expecting your life to fit around your workout program). The nutrition program also never leaves me feeling like I am ‘on a diet’. I am actually eating more than I ever have.
If you’re looking to get started at the gym I cannot recommend LiftHacks enough!
I cannot wait to see what results the next few months of training and nutrition bring me!
These photos were taken only two months apart!
Too often, losing weight is the only way we assess our progress. This is what it looks like when you work hard for two months, and lose no weight. Wait, what?! Yes, for the last two months, Michelle has been eating more than she ever has before, while focussing on lifting heavy weights and improving her strength. Michelle lifts weights three times a week and does cardio twice, whereas before starting with LiftHacks, she was working out as many times as 10x a week. We think her progress speaks for itself. Keep up the hard work, Michelle 💪
My journey with LiftHacks began in my second year of university, about two and a half years ago. Ever since then, Justin has been filling my brain with knowledge and empowering my self with confidence I never imagined I was capable of. I used to be overwhelmed by how out-of-control I felt when it came to my body – what I put in it, what it did – and that led to minor body image struggles. This is a feeling I can almost no longer remember. Justin introduced me to the sport of powerlifting, and taught me how to regain control through lifting weights and eating accordingly. Ever since, Justin has always ensured that our goals align, and his goal has always been to make me feel good about myself. In the winter of 2015, I competed in my first powerlifting competition. My positive, healthy relationship with food was so clearly established during the preparation for this meet. Justin made sure I became the strongest version of myself – both mentally and physically – for that competition. It was then that we decided to play with the idea of prepping for a show. It was Justin’s first time writing meal plans in such detail, and tailoring both the meal plans and the workout plans to someone’s prep towards the stage. Every program he has written for me been done with significant thought towards what my specific goals are, and he has always made sure I understand how they are going to be achieved. By feeling so in touch with the process, it has also become a passion of mine. When I hit the stage in July 2015, I was full of energy, not deprived in any way, and most importantly to me my strength in the gym didn’t suffer at all. Throughout prep, I was hitting PRs all the way up until peak week. Not only were they lifetime PRs but there were bodyweight PRs as well, being ~25lbs lighter.
Post show is usually something you hear girls talk about being a struggle, mentally and physically, where they go way off track and in a sense ruin all their hard work. Almost 4 months post show, the number on the scale has gone up about a pound, I still feel like I could get on stage at any given time, and I’m hitting all kinds of crazy PRs in the gym in preparation for powerlifting provincials in a month. My relationship with food has been so well supported by Justin, and remains strong and healthier than ever. I am eating almost as much as I was before beginning prep, where I was technically in a dirty bulking phase, but I feel 100% in control because of Justin’s support.
Every program he has written for me (nutrition and training) has been done with significant thought towards what my specific goals are, and that goal for him has always been about making me feel the best about myself as possible. Safe to say, together we have met many of our goals, but I know it doesn’t stop there for him.
“Coach Justin Reeson has made me the powerlifter I am today, and I would never look back. His program personalization gives you the confidence to dominate your training day after day and his constant support makes sticking to your nutritional program a breeze. I still can’t believe how Justin has made me lean out while hitting PRs and gaining incredible strength overall.”
Before/after weight: 168lbs to 157lbs
Before/after lifting stats:
Competition awards: 2015 junior 72kg provincial champion
I began my training with LiftHacks in July after my second Bikini competition. I was at the end of a less than satisfactory prep and desperate to find help and a coach who really cares about their clients. I am happy to say that I was immediately thrilled with Justin’s coaching style and my new program from the very first day. Everything was tailored to my goals, all my questions were answered in detail and I no longer felt like a back burner client. In the past 5 months of training with LiftHacks Justin has been guiding me through a reverse diet that enables me to build muscle and strength without much excess fat. I am lifting more weight than I ever thought I could and my confidence in the gym has soared. Justin is easy to talk to and always sends my weekly program on time on top of being a supportive and understanding coach. I am very happy that I found LiftHacks and I trust Justin completely to help me achieve my goals.
Prior to contacting LiftHacks, I had spoken to a couple of Justin Reeson’s athletes and colleagues about his coaching methodologies, and the consensus was that he walked on water. I was equal parts impressed and skeptical at how his coaching provoked so much admiration and loyalty; I figured this was the kind of coach I wanted to work with. When I contacted Justin, I gave him what I believed was almost an impossible task. I wanted him to peak my performance for a powerlifting meet that was only a month away with the added issue that I had neglected those very lifts for the past four months. Although he was in the middle of finishing his final papers for his undergrad, he spent over an hour messaging with me and sent me a very thorough program a couple of days later.
Throughout our coaching-client relationship, Justin was adamant about having videos sent to him of my lifts, which he analyzed and provided a comprehensive breakdown of the technique, or lack there of, then went on to provide very clear cues and strategies to improve the problems. The programming itself is detailed, systematic and quite elegant.
Justin is a wealth of information; he’s insatiably curious about anything that involves the facets of human performance, both at a molecular level and at the performance stage, making him a remarkable asset to anyone who is interested in moving through life more effectively. He’s knowledgeable, professional, patient and has an off the kilter sense of humour. His passion for his work and achieving his client’s goals stems from a very personal space, therefore, you can’t help but feel like family when you work with him.
Photo: Lifting 135kg / 297lbs
I started powerlifting in June 2014. My best lifts were 440 squat, 275 bench press and 465 deadlift at 205lbs bodyweight. Since then I’ve added nearly 200lbs to my squat, 100lbs to my bench and just over 150lbs to my deadlift. I can say that I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help of Justin Reeson. He took over my programing in July 2014, and just finished my prep for my second provincial championships. Justin has helped prep me for 4 powerlifting meets and each one I’ve gotten progressively stronger. He helped me grow from the immature, shaky lifter I was a year ago into the calm, cool and collected national champion I am today. He answered every question I had, and more, and has taught me a lot about lifting. Powerlifting coaching is as much about the numbers on the page as it is the mind behind them. Justin has a keen eye for technique and injury prevention, and because of that I have great form and have stayed injury free. I would recommend Justin’s programming to anyone who is looking to get stronger, lose weight or just become an all around better athlete.
Bench Press – 285lbs to 365lbs
I began my prep for a bikini competition after my first powerlifting meet in February of 2015, and I was losing weight and seeing physical changes in my body every week in ways that I loved. Cardio never exceeded 3x per week, and I was eating amounts that never left me hungry and allowed me to have fun with various foods and recipes. The way Justin tailored my program showed me that attaining, and more importantly maintaining, my dream body did not require any extreme measures to be taken. I was living my life normally; always full of energy and always getting stronger. This aspect of his programming was especially evident during my post show time period, where my calories gradually increased and there was no sudden weight gain. I never had the desire to binge or stray from the plan post show because I never felt deprived or hungry during the entire prep. Today I am almost 5 months post show and only up 4lbs of pure strength gains.
Justin began handling my programming in September 2014. At the time I was still rebuilding from a minor MCL tear suffered in mid May and had spent the entire summer working hard labour which lead to a significant strength decrease. In a very short amount of time, Justin helped me rebuild my strength and mass that I had lost from recovering from the injury and summer of hard labour. He accomplished all of this in less than 3 months all the while preparing me for an amateur MMA title fight November 28th 2014, which I won by submission in round 2. This win put me in the top 3 amateur MMA middleweight rankings in Canada, and #1 in Ontario.
From there, Justin continued to build my strength and speed while preparing me for a title defense March 27th. Unfortunately, I suffered a serious MCL tear in the second round of the bout, and narrowly lost a judge’s decision 3 rounds to 2. Justin continued to work with me and helped me put on some serious mass on lagging muscle groups. More importantly, he once again built back up my lower body and I was once again hitting old PR’s and new PR’s on compound lifts. A PR of note would be a 25lb Deadlift PR (550lbs) which felt very strong and stable, and came no more than 4 months after the injury. Justin programmed 6 weeks of single leg and balance training after the second injury, and I was squatting just as much weight as I was prior to the injury about 3 months post injury without any pain.
Added strength and size is nice and all but where Justin helped me progress the most was in the mobility and movement quality aspects of strength and conditioning. I was rather stiff due to years of neglecting mobility work along with years of grappling and MMA training. Justin not only helped improve my movement quality but put me in contact with other professionals and taught me a lot along the way, which to me is infinitely more important than the result.
The knowledge I have acquired not only about proper mobility but strength and conditioning in general by having Justin as a trainer and friend is something that I am forever grateful for.
I’m the typical story of an elite athlete who got soft. I started working with Justin in October and despite my hectic lifestyle he is the eternal optimist and comes up with no excuse ways for me to integrate fitness into my day. The best part of this process hasn’t just been the support, enthusiasm and accountability, but the fact that I am LEARNING how to better myself. It’s not simply being told what to do, but a collaborative approach to reach my goals. And speaking of goals – Justin has helped me redefine them. The initial questionnaire made me take a long hard look at what I want out of life/fitness. Justin then took those goals and broke the process into the small steps I need to create a healthier, stronger and ultimately happier self. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for my body!
I am a 41 year old woman with 2 active kids, a husband and a full-time government job. As you can imagine, finding time for ME has been a struggle over the last 15 years – with that came weight gain. I was looking for a trainer who could guide, motivate and at times kick my butt so that I could unleash the athlete within a 230 pound frame. Justin Reeson was referred to me by a work colleague and after one phone conversation; I knew he was the one. He provides me with weekly nutrition guidelines and weekly workouts that fit MY life. I am on week 6 of this program I have lost 10 pounds but more importantly I am happier, fulfilled and feeling like a million bucks. He is there for me when I crave those chips, he tells me to go into athlete mode when I am being lazy but most of all I truly believe he want this for me just as much as I do. I can’t wait to see how this will end! Thanks Justin