21 Year Old Beast: Chris Bumstead Talks With Simplyshredded.com

Quick Stats:

Age: 21
Height: 6’0” – 183 cm
Contest Weight: 225 lbs – 102 kg
Off Season: 260 lbs – 118 kg


How did you get started with bodybuilding?

As a kid growing up I played a lot of sports and I understood to be the best I had to train on my own time. I was constantly in the gym and from there I fell in love with training. I began to develop what I thought was a ‘good’ physique, but it wasn’t until I met my now close friend and sister’s boyfriend, Iain Valliere, that I even considered competing. He was and still is a huge mentor to me. Iain inspired me to step on stage and coached me through the process.

After my first show I fell in love with competing, and I really feel I have found my niche!


Where does your motivation come from?

My motivation definitely comes from loving what I do. I have a strong passion for training and I love seeing how I can transform my body.

Though sometimes for motivation, it doesn’t hurt to have a pretty girl in the gym. (Laughs)


What workout routine has worked best for you?

The best workout routine for me has been a 5-day training split. I train back, chest, hamstrings/glutes, shoulders, and quads all on separate days. People often ask what days I train certain body parts and my answer is I don’t. I have a 5 day rotation and rarely take days off unless I feel I need to.

Full Routine:

Day 1: Back

  • Deadlifts 4 x 10/8/8/Failure
  • Bent-Over Rows 4 x 12/10/10/8 (2 underhand/2 overhand grip)
  • Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns or Wide Grip Assisted Pullups 4 x 12-15 (Superset)
  • Straight Arm Pulldowns 4 x 12-15
  • Dumbbell Rows 4 x 15/12/10/10
  • Machine Rows 3 x 20
  • Hyper Extensions 2 x Failure

Day 2: Chest/Biceps

  • Incline Dumbell Bench Press 5 x 15/15/12/12/10
  • Smith Machine Bench Press 4 x 12/10/8/8
  • Incline Dumbell Fly’s 3 x 15/12/12
  • Cable Fly’s 3 x 15-12 (Superset)
  • Push Ups 3 x Failure
  • Barbell Curls 3 x 15 (Superset)
  • Reverse Barbell Curls 3 x Failure
  • Machine Preacher Curls 3 x 10-12 (Drop Sets on 2nd and 3rd) (Superset)
  • Hammer Curls 2 x 10-8

Day 3: Hamstrings/Glutes

  • Lying Leg Curls 4 x 15
  • Straight Legged Deadlifts 4 x 15-20
  • Standing Leg Curls 2 x 4-5 (Run the Rack/Drop Sets)
  • Reverse Hack Squat 4 x 15-20
  • Single Legged Glute Pushdowns or Glute Kickbacks 3 x 12-15

Day 4 Shoulders/Triceps

  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises 3 x 15
  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press (Superset) 3 x 12
  • Barbell Front Raise 3 x 12
  • Single Arm Cable (Rear Delts) 4 x 20/15/12/12
  • Upright Rows (Superset) 3 x 15/12/12
  • Rope Face Pulls 3 x 15/12/12
  • Machine Lateral Raises 3 x 15
  • Bench Dips (Superset) 4 x 12-15
  • EZ-Bar Skull Crushers 4 x 12-15
  • Reverse Grip Barbell Skull Crushers 4 x 8-10
  • Single Arm Cable Kickbacks 3 x 12/10/8

Day 5: Quads

  • Leg Extensions 3 x 15
  • Squats 2 x 8 (Heavy Sets) 6 x 10-12 (Lighter Sets)
  • Leg Press 4 x 40/30/20/10
  • Leg Extensions (Superset) 4 x 15
  • Standing Lunges 4 x 6-8


What is your secret to your incredible quad development?

There really is no secret, but the one thing that I can say that contributed the most to my overall leg development would have to be squatting constantly and squatting heavy. Even when I was in high school, I was always in the squat rack trying to increase my leg strength and power for the sports I played.

I wasn’t the classic guy training my chest and arms every day. (Laughs)


If you had to pick only 3 exercises what would they be and why?

First and foremost the three exercises I would choose would all be what I consider ‘compound exercises’. When time is an issue in the gym, I always stick to as many compound exercises as possible as they work multiple muscle groups at a time, and I can take full advantage of what little time I may have.

  1. Squats: 100% are number one. I believe they are an invaluable exercise for not only leg development, but also the core. Squats are my favourite exercise because I can really push my limits and see just how much weight I can move.
  2. Incline Dumbbell Press: The incline press is a much more natural movement for my body compared to the flat press. I also personally am looking to achieve a much larger and fuller upper chest, as an upper chest pops more in poses such as the side chest. If restricted to three exercises you want to work as many muscles as possible, for example chest, shoulders, and triceps. I prefer dumbbells to barbells because the unilateral movement allows you to focus on each side of your body and build a more even and symmetrical physique.
  3. Bent-Over Barbell Rows: They would be my final pick. It’s extremely important for me to keep my back as strong as possible, not only for proportional reasons, but for overall spine health. I like rows because they also work secondary muscles missed by the previous two exercises such as biceps and rear delts.


Do you deplete your water prior to a show? Tell us about the process and what’s worked best for you.

Five days prior to the week of the show, I do a water load. I drink about 10-12 litres of water a day to regulate my body to constantly excrete water. Then about 16 hours before the show, depending on the circumstances, I will restrict my water intake. Because my body is regulated to excrete so much water and it’s not receiving any more through drinking, it allows me to dry out and get that ‘hard’ and ‘grainy’ look.

But, it can be a dangerous task if it’s not done properly, and I don’t recommend trying it without a good working knowledge of the process or a coach.


What is your diet like?

The best way to describe my diet and really everything I do related to bodybuilding, is consistency. During prep, I will eat the same 6 meals every day until I need to make minor changes. This way I can determine what my body needs, and I can make a small change in my diet to achieve the results I’m after. For me, it’s key not to add in new foods close to a competition because I don’t know the effect it can have on my body.
In the off season, I’m a bit more relaxed, but you won’t see me ordering pizza or hamburgers every day just to get in the calories. In the off season, I still eat 6 maybe 7 meals a day, and I aim to get in around 6,500 calories a day. 5,000 of these calories I try to make sure come from ‘clean’ calories such as rice, chicken, potato, flank steak, etc. I will throw in some extra carbs pre-workout such as muffins, or even Timbits. It gets hard to eat as much food as I need from only clean foods all of the time. Sometimes I’ll add something like Ezekiel bread with almond butter to my chicken and rice meal; it makes it easier, and I can get in the extra calories I need to grow. The following is an example of what I might eat at about 8 weeks out from a competition.

Daily Diet:

  • Meal 1: 1 ½ cup Egg Whites, 2 Whole Eggs and 1 cup Oats
  • Meal 2: 8 ounces Chicken, 1 cup Jasmine Rice and 11 ounces Mixed Vegetables
  • Meal 3: 8 ounces White Fish, 7 ounces Sweet Potato and 11 ounces Mixed Vegetables
  • Meal 4: (Pre workout) 7 ounces White Fish and 2 cups Jasmine Rice
  • Meal 5: (Post Workout Shake) 50g 100% Whey Isolate mixed in Water
  • Meal 6: 8 ounces Chicken, 6 ounces Sweet Potato, 2 ounces Broccoli and 2 ounces Asparagus
  • Meal 7: 2 ½ cups Egg Whites, 3 Whole Eggs and 11 ounces Mixed Vegetables


What is your supplementation like?

  • Whey
  • BCAA’s
  • Glutamine
  • Creatine Monohydrate
  • Vitargo
  • R-Alpha Lipoic Acid
  • Multivitamin
  • Fish Oil
  • Vitamin B Complex
  • Vitamin C


What are your hobbies and interests outside of the gym?

My hobbies outside of the gym usually involve something social. I really like to get out and enjoy time with my friends. I am also lucky enough to have a cottage close by which I love to go up to and just spend time in. I love being around the water, and I enjoy the outdoors. During my downtimes I also enjoy reading for knowledge, usually fitness related topics, and sometimes just for pleasure.

I am currently a university student, so a lot of my time is taken up by lectures, studying, and labs.


Favorite Quote:

“The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark” – Michelangelo


Social Media

Instagram: @cbum_
Facebook Page: fb.com/bumstead1995