Christopher Peckham – Male Fitness Model Statistics
- Name: Christopher Peckham
- Date of Birth: February 6, 1983
- Height: 6’0″
- Weight: 205 pounds
- Hair Color: Brown
- Eye Color: Brown
- Location: Fall River, Massachusetts
Christopher Peckham – Male Fitness Model Interview
What is your background?
My name is Christopher Peckham. I was born and raised in Fall River, Massachusetts. I am a full time Correctional Officer with the Massachusetts Department of Correction and I work at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center, the states super-maximum security prison. My passion has always been law enforcement and fitness. I am a certified personal trainer (CPT) and certified sports nutritionist (CSN). I keep myself in shape to stay healthy, but also to keep me in the physical condition needed to perform my duties as a Correction Officer.
I am also an NPC Physique Competitor, most recently competing in the NPC Pittsburgh Physique Classic where I qualified for Nationals. I try to stay very disciplined in all aspects of my life and am currently certified as a Hostage Negotiator trained through the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Being disciplined keeps me safe in the prison, and also allows me to be able to take my fitness and physique goals to another level. I love what I do and wouldn’t change a thing.
How did you get started in the fitness field?
At the age of 14, I tried out for the High School freshmen football team at BMC Durfee High School in Fall River, Massachusetts. I was tall but very thin for my height, and that’s when I started training. From there on I developed such a love for this lifestyle. There’s always a goal that can be achieved, and a dream that can be accomplished, and in this sport there are so many opportunities to live a life that you can be proud of.
What is the #1 thing you like best about being into fitness?
Being a personal trainer and sports nutritionist, I love helping others fulfill their own dreams and goals. Knowing I helped someone accomplish their goal is the best feeling in the world. Seeing a smile on someone’s face once they reach their fitness goal is priceless.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the fitness field?
Qualifying for Nationals at the NPC Pittsburgh Physique classic in 2012. I started my diet 22 weeks out from the show. I weighed 240 pounds starting out and on the day of the show I stepped on stage at 180 pounds. It was the most grueling 22 weeks of my life, but that challenge made me realize that if you put your mind to something, anything is possible and achievable.
What is the best way to get started in the fitness modeling industry? Should I just contact the photographers directly or should I use an agency?
I used social media and the Internet to get started. I sent out photos to every company I could find. It’s the effort that pays off. If you have to spend 10 hours a day sending out pictures or contacting agencies, it will pay off. I believe there is no wrong way to get started. Try anything and everything if that’s your dream.
Please describe a typical day for you. What is your daily routine like?
I work 7am to 3pm at the prison. On the days that I work, I leave work at 3pm and drive an hour and 15 minutes home. Once home, I get ready for the gym. My gym sessions usually last from 1.5 to 2 hours. After the gym I go home, and prepare my meals for the following day, get my uniform ready for work, and go to bed. And then repeat!
I don’t have that much time during the day to workout, so I really want to burn major calories in a short amount of time. What is the #1 “bang for the buck” cardio exercise I should do to burn serious calories?
I’m a firm believer in spin style workouts. The more you can raise your heart rate in a short amount of time, the better. Spin classes are great for raising your heart rate and making you sweat like you took a shower (LOL).
How much weight (pounds) should I focus on losing every week? What is a safe amount to make sure I keep it off?
Personally, I don’t recommend focussing on the scale every week. I recommend concentrating more on adjusting your lifestyle so it’s long term instead of short period diets. If you make it a lifestyle you will see the difference forever. If you focus on a scale every week and rely on fad diets, you are more prone to put the weight back on after you lose it.
What type of food or supplements should I take before and after my workouts to help me see results in gaining lean muscle and losing fat?
I like to take in a protein source like whey protein powder before my weight training sessions with a small amount of carbohydrates such as a 1/4 cup of oatmeal. After my workouts I try to consume some type of fast acting sugar source to restore glycogen to my muscles. Usually it’s an apple post-workout.
How do you deal with cravings for junk foods, sweets and salty food? I can stay on a diet for maybe a few weeks but I eventually get really bad cravings and binge on snacks and fast foods.
Whenever I get a sweet tooth while dieting, I supplement my sugar source after my workout with 15 gummy bears instead of an apple. Another way is to prepare my protein shakes differently. Instead of a shaker cup, I use a bowl and mix the powder with almond milk and turn it into a pudding. It tricks the mind into believing you have fulfilled that sweet craving without actually eating bad. And as far as defeating the bad cravings after weeks of dieting, I use the out of sight, out of mind method. If the bad food is not in your house, you can’t eat it. And also keep in mind that you are now living a healthy lifestyle, all the hard work and dedication over weeks is not worth a piece of chocolate cake or a bag of chips.
I’m trying to create a healthy shopping list to stick with. What are some of the main foods I should include to maintain a lean and muscular physique?
Protein sources such as chicken, turkey and eggs are great! As long as they are lean 90/10 or even 85/15 (protein to fat ratio). Ostrich and buffalo meat are also really good protein sources but are harder to find and a little more expensive. As for carbohydrates, I usually stick to whole grain rice, Ezekiel bread, and sweet potatoes. I get my fats in 2 tablespoons of peanut butter a day and a 1/4 cup of almonds. And also remember, diet is not all about solid foods, water is a huge part of your diet since it flushes the system and makes your body feel full while waiting for your next meal.
I’m about 35 pounds overweight. I have never started an exercise program and really don’t know where to start. What tips can you give me to get started on the right track?
I highly recommend seeking advice from your Doctor before starting any workout regimen. I will not train a client without a Doctor’s consent first. With that being said, start off slow and steady, don’t over do it right away. A lot of people go all out from the jump and burn themselves out. I recommend getting advice from a trainer in your area, and he or she can evaluate you and start you on the path of changing your life.
I tend to eat out most of the time and really don’t know what healthy foods to order from the menu. What tips do you recommend for eating out at restaurants to make sure my diet will not suffer?
Whenever I eat out while dieting I scan the menu looking for something that has a protein source and a lean carb source. For instance, I may choose a barbecue chicken plate with rice. I will ask the server to not use the barbecue sauce and make sure there is no butter used in the cooking process. Most places today now have a healthy portion area of their menu. Even if having to stop at a fast food restaurant, order a burger or grilled chicken sandwich and eat just the meat and discard the bun.
What exercises do you recommend for getting a bigger, rounder and fuller butt?
Squats and lunges! You can really target the glutes with deep squats and lunges. Also building up your hamstrings with leg kickbacks is important. The more toned and larger the hamstrings, the better your glutes will look.
What is the most challenging thing you deal with about consistently staying in top shape?
I have 3 children and work a job that is very mentally draining. I will not lie and say I don’t sometimes attempt to use those things to skip a training session. But it’s mind over matter. I use my workouts as a decompression to overcome the stresses that come with life.
Please describe your normal diet. What do you eat in a typical day to stay in shape?
- Breakfast: 6 eggs (2 whole and 4 whites), 1 piece of Ezekiel bread.
- Midmorning Snack: Protein shake with 1/4 cup of almonds.
- Lunch: 8 ounces of chicken or turkey with 1/2 cup whole grain rice.
- Mid-Afternoon Snack: Protein shake, 1 rice cake with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter.
- Dinner: 8 ounces of chicken or lean ground beef, 1/2 cup of whole grain rice, 1/2 cup of green beans.
What type of exercises do you include in your routine to stay in shape?
- Strength Training Exercises: Hypertrophy exercises (Hypertrophy-Specific Training) with quick workouts for each body part. 1 body part a day. I like HST workouts because there’s always pressure on that specific muscle group allowing maximum blood flow. The more blood flow going to that specific muscle, the more likely your muscle is to grow.
- Cardio Exercises: Stairmill 60 minutes a day, everyday! I increase and decrease the level and intensity during the workout.
- Additional Training: I’m a fan of band work. I like to focus on using bands especially for biceps and triceps to attack smaller muscle fibers that your normal exercises don’t hit.
How does your family and friends react to and deal with your strict fitness lifestyle (dieting, eating out, workouts, parties)?
In complete honesty, while I’m dieting for a show the carb depletion makes me very irritable. My family is fantastic! My mom actually will help me pack for a show or help prepare my meals. She knows what I am going through and helps whenever she can. As for parties and eating out, I try not to burden anyone else with my diet. They understand that I live the lifestyle that I do and respect the fact that I may not be eating the same way as them. Workouts with 3 children is definitely sometimes tough to schedule, but luckily I have a very good support system and it has always worked. If I need to train but have family things planned for the day, I will wake up 2 hours before they do to get in my workout so it doesn’t interfere with their day.
What are your top 5 tips for losing body fat and getting ripped?
1. Strict diet.
2. Intense and consistent cardio.
3. HST style training (Hypertrophy-Specific Training).
4. Bodyweight exercises such as push-ups, dips, pull-ups.
What are your top 5 tips for building muscle and packing on size?
1. Eat lean carb sources.
2. High protein intake.
3. Raise your weight limits slightly, enough where you can get 6-8 reps with muscle failure.
4. Eat clean but consistently, every 2.5 to 3 hours throughout the day.
5. If trying to bulk, decrease your cardio to maybe 20-30 minutes a day, but don’t stop completely! Your cardiovascular health is always important.
What is the most important thing you recommend for staying motivated on a fitness plan and truly making a healthy lifestyle change?
Be committed to making it a lifestyle and not just a temporary thing. Once you become accustomed to your new lifestyle and begin to see changes, you will be waiting outside the gym for them to open everyday!
What is your training routine like?
- Monday: Biceps and triceps: 2 exercises back to back with very little rest for three sets. Take a 2 minute break and then do two more exercises back to back with very little rest. Continue until you have reached 6 exercises per body part. While doing arms, I like to hold the weight for 30 seconds after my set contracting the specific muscle to increase blood flow and vascularity.
- Tuesday: Cardio only: Stairmill or treadmill interval training for 60 minutes.
- Wednesday: Chest: I have a bad shoulder (torn labrum) so I like to stick with Smith machine bench press, incline press etc. with moderate weight, enough to get 15 reps. I also do a lot of cable work for pectoral major and pectoral minor definition.
- Thursday: Back: Bent-over rows always to start. And then a series of lat pulldowns, lower back exercises, and I love to focus on my rear delts, it’s a body part that a lot of people lack in training, and if mine are on point the better it is for me in a show. With all back exercises, I like to squeeze the mid back to emphasize the stress on the muscle. For instance, with seated rows I will squeeze the rhomboids for a four second count.
- Friday: Cardio: Stairmill or treadmill with high intensity for 60 minutes.
- Saturday: Legs: Basic leg workout. I like to stay “old school” with legs which means doing squats, lunges, leg presses, extensions and calf raises.
- Sunday: Shoulders: This is my favorite day! I do everything standing while doing shoulders. Overhead presses both in front and behind the neck. I feel that it targets and stabilizes your core. I add a lot of side and front raises, usually 6 sets of each. And I end each shoulder workout with trap exercises, alternating between machine and free weights week to week.
What type of nutritional supplements do you currently use and which ones do you recommend for a beginner getting started on a fitness program?
Whey protein, a multivitamin, fish oil, flax oil, and branched chain amino acids (BCAA). I believe all of these things are essential for weight lifters and competitors, no matter what stage you are at.
What is your favorite healthy food or meal you really enjoy eating? Also, what is your favorite cheat meal or food you like to indulge in from time to time?
My favorite healthy meal is 8 ounces of ground turkey with a tablespoon of garlic and cut red pepper. I’m of Portuguese decent so pepper is included in everything (LOL). Pepper has also been linked in some studies to increase metabolism. My favorite cheat meal is a whole large pizza!