Subscribe & Save 10%
Free Shipping & Returns

How Brandon Used Bigger Leaner Stronger to Lose 35 Pounds and 12% Body Fat


"My confidence is back, I have unlimited energy, and I just feel all around good!"

Brandon's Progress

Progress Image Before
Progress Image Before
Progress Image Before
Progress Image Before
Progress Image 9 Months
Progress Image 9 Months
Progress Image 9 Months

How many months’ progress do your pictures represent? What were your stats for each picture?

I started the program at 198 pounds and around 25-26% body fat. The current photos are 9 months later and represent a body weight of 163 pounds and 14% body fat.

What has happened so far on the program?

Since starting the program, I haven’t had to do anything other than follow the nutrition guide and workout routine from the book/workbook. Prior to reading Bigger Leaner Stronger, I had zero understanding of macronutrients/micronutrients, let alone how to incorporate them into a diet.

After gaining a better understanding of the importance of properly maintained nutrition, I dialed everything in by purchasing a meal plan from Muscle for Life. In the 9 months I’ve used the program, my strength gains have been unreal–comically unreal.

Bench press has always been my arch nemesis and my chest has always been, what I consider, severely underdeveloped. My chest has been a constant stress since my early twenties–I would avoid certain clothing in fear it would pronounce my “moobs.” I went from struggling with 115 pounds for 2-3 reps to knocking out 185 pounds for 5-6 reps and a 1 rep max of 225. This has been one of the more profound self-esteem boosting parts of the entire program; on top of the strength gains, my chest has tightened up and I’ve gained my confidence back.

Squatting was a new concept to me and after reading Bigger Leaner Stronger, it sounded pretty important; it also came very naturally to me. My body seemed to pick up the form naturally and since I’ve started, I’ve never looked back. I started the program squatting around 135 pounds and now work at 255 pounds for 4-6 reps on my leg days.

Deadlifting was also a new concept and it seemed to be the king exercise in the Bigger Leaner Stronger programm. Deadlifting did not come naturally, however, and I struggled with my form for months. For the longest time, my deadlift matched my squat and I couldn’t lock it down. Eventually, I was able to lock it down with the help of a coach, and I’ve since taken it from 135 pounds to 305 pounds for 4-6 reps.

I love doing the military press! I’m not great at it, but I work towards improving it every time I’m in the gym. I started working with just the bar and have since increased it to 105 pounds for 4-6 reps.

What workout split from the book did you use?

I like direction and being able to follow a guide. Because of this, I got the Bigger Leaner Stronger Year One Challenge and simply followed the 5-day workout splits laid out in there.

What, if anything, almost kept you from buying the book or starting the program?

There was nothing in particular that kept me from buying the book, other than the philosophies in the book were new to me since I was starting out as a beginner. I had no idea where to start or what worked. Thankfully, I found Bigger Leaner Stronger at the onset of my fitness journey.

What do you like most about the program?

The program is exactly what is says it is–there are no secrets and no bullshit–it just works. Honestly, if you told me in 9 months ago I would have dropped nearly 40 pounds and would be in the best shape of my life (naturally), I wouldn’t have believed you.

How does this program compare with others you’ve tried?

I’ve program hopped for the better part of my gym life (which has never been consistent or longer than a few months) and most of the work I did was accessory work–go figure.

I like how this program is laid out–it’s straightforward and easy to follow. Going into Bigger Leaner Stronger, I thought the workouts wouldn’t be enough and that I would need more of a “pump” during my workouts to get results. However, that was not the case. I found that when I gave my workouts 110% and focused on the basic principle of progressive overload, the results came.

How has what you’ve achieved with your body changed other areas of your life?

Adult life snuck up on me pretty quick. I got married, had children, and I’m a police officer in a relatively large city. I transferred to an investigative role and was basically confined to a desk. We ate out a lot, I stopped playing sports, and my activity level dropped significantly. It took a photo with my wife for me to realize she was still as effervescent and beautiful as the first day I met her and I had slowly changed. I was overweight and started having health issues related to my stomach and blood pressure.

Initially, I was disgusted with myself, but knew I could put in the work and get back on track. I found Bigger Leaner Stronger on Amazon and burned through the pages in two days. I was reinvigorated and focused. Fast forward 9 months–my body confidence is back, I have what feels like unlimited energy, and I just feel all around “good.”

I don’t do a ton of cardio; before I started I couldn’t run a mile in less than 12 minutes and I would have to walk a majority of it. Now, I’ll burn through a mile in 7.5 minutes without any issue. The worst part about the Bigger Leaner Stronger program is having to buy all new clothes!

Who would you recommend this program to and why?

I would recommend Bigger Leaner Stronger to anyone looking to get back on track or lock down their health/fitness. You don’t have to over-complicate things to achieve success, but you do have to be willing to put in the work and follow the basic principles. Consistency and time are key, and if you follow Bigger Leaner Stronger, it will get you to where you want to be.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

If you’re like me, I work better with structure. If you don’t know where to start with planning, get the Bigger Leaner Stronger Year One Challenge workbook. I thrive on repetition and having things laid out for me, so grabbing the workbook was a no brainer. About halfway through the workbook, it’ll “click” and you’ll get it in terms of how to structure future workouts.

Although, I don’t plan on deviating from the workbook until I’ve logged every workout for the first year! I’m your typical, average, early thirties dad–I don’t have super genes, my parents weren’t professional athletes, and I don’t buy into the ideology that only certain body types can achieve great results.

Recognize what you need to do and do it. Put in the time, stay consistent, don’t dwell on mistakes/slip ups, and you’ll get the results you want.

Did you use any Legion supplements?

Currently, I take the following Legion supplements: PULSE, PHOENIX, TRITON, and TRIUMPH. I also used the meal planning service through Muscle for Life, shoutout to Sam Kahn!

Readers' Ratings

No Ratings

Your Rating?

Want to become a success story too? Here's how he did it

The program that made this transformation possible:

The meal plan that makes building muscle and losing fat easy and enjoyable:

Mike Matthews is the founder and CEO of Legion as well as a bestselling fitness author of several books, including Bigger Leaner Stronger, Thinner Leaner Stronger, and The Shredded Chef.

His simple and science-based approach to building muscle, losing fat, and getting healthy has sold over a million books and helped thousands of people build their best bodies ever, and his work has been featured in many popular outlets including Esquire, Men’s Health, Elle, Women’s Health, Muscle & Strength, and more, as well as on FOX and ABC.

If you enjoyed this article, get weekly updates. It's free.

100% Privacy. We don't rent or share our email lists.

You May Also Like

Our Most Popular Evidence-Based Articles


Many companies offer a money-back guarantee because they know the majority of dissatisfied customers aren’t going to go through the hassle of actually returning the product to get their money back. We don’t play these games because we don’t have to, the quality of our products makes it unnecessary.

If you order any of our supplements for the first time and don’t like it, you can keep it. Just notify us and we’ll give you a full refund on the spot. No complicated forms and no return necessary.

To protect ourselves from fraud, the It’s-On-Us guarantee is only valid for first time purchases of a product, and redeemable up to three months after purchase. If you bought more than one bottle of a supplement on your first purchase and don’t like it, we would ask that you send the unopened bottles back to us for a refund because we can put them back into our sellable inventory.


Many companies use shipping and handling fees to increase their profit margins, but here at Legion, we hate profits so our shipping is 100% free!

Okay, we do dig on profits, but we also do offer 100% free shipping to everywhere in the world because it makes people you like happy, and that makes us happy.

So, if you live in the United States, your order ships free regardless of order size, and if you live anywhere else, your order ships free when it’s over $99.

Why the restriction on international orders?

Unfortunately shipping outside of the US is very expensive and if we didn't require a minimum order size, we'd lose a lot of money. That said, most customers spend about $100 with us each time they shop, so this setup is a win-win.

Fact Checked

Our scientific review board of nutritionists, dietitians, molecular biologists, doctors, and other accredited experts is responsible for reviewing every article, podcast, and video we produce to ensure they’re evidence based, accurate, trustworthy, and current.

Thanks to their connections, credentials, and academic experience, this team of MDs, PhDs, and other professionals has access to a wealth of research published in the largest and most prestigious journals in the world.

This allows them to not only review individual studies but also analyze the overall weight of the evidence on any and all topics related to diet, exercise, supplementation, and more.

If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, misleading, out-of-date, or anything less than factual, please let us know in the comments section of the article in question.

Evidence Based

We follow a detailed, rigorous, multi-step process to create content that meets the highest standards of clarity, practicality, and scientific integrity.

First, our research associates provide our editorial team with accurate, up-to-date, proven scientific evidence.

Then, our editorial team uses this research to draft articles and outlines for podcasts and videos.

Finally, our scientific review board reviews the content to ensure all key information and claims are backed by high-quality scientific research and explained simply and precisely.

If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, misleading, out-of-date, or anything less than factual, please let us know in the comments section of the article in question.

Buy now, pay later.

Split your entire online purchase into 4 interest-free payments, over 6 weeks with no impact to your credit.

payment break down 25% today, 25% 2 weeks, 25% 4 weeks, 25% 6 weeks


2 weeks

4 weeks

6 weeks

Here's how to Sezzle

Step 1 - shop the store


Shop and add items to your cart as normal!

Step 2 - checkout at the store


Choose Sezzle at Checkout! You’ll be redirected to Sezzle to Sign Up or Log In to complete your order.

Step 3 - Select Sezzle and Sezzleit

Sezzle it

Your order will be shipped out right away* and your payments will be split up over 6 weeks.

*shipping times subject to merchant shipping policy

Download the App

Shop directory. Reschedule payments. Plus more!