We talked with Kevin Lukarski in April, 2020.
Kevin Lukarskis Stats When We Talked with Him 💪
👋 Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
Hello there! My name is Kevin Lukarski, I’m 25 years old and live in Belgium. Genetically I’m practically 100% Polish, but I was born in Belgium.
I work as a (sports) physiotherapist and personal trainer. Mostly athletes with sports injuries like torn ACL, muscle tears, sprained ankles, etc. but also gen pop with common musculoskeletal complaints like lower back pain, neck pain, etc.
I started doing fitness at around the age of 16 years old. I’ve always been a tall, skinny dude and played competitive basketball for more than fifteen years.
My first priority was to be a little bit stronger and having some mass, so I could stand my ground against bigger and heavier opponents on the court. Basketball and fitness became one, and I found my passion in doing both.
For me the switch came when I got a major injury on my ankle (cartilage damage) and couldn’t play for almost the whole season.
I started doing more fitness as I couldn’t play basketball, so the passion became greater. I started to love going to the gym more than being on a basketball court.
So after university when I started working, I gave up basketball so I could focus 100% on my work in combination with fitness and strength training.
Might seem dorky but I love working. I think if you find that vibe where you can do what you love each day (going to work, training, spending time with your friends, loved ones, …), you can accomplish great things.
Next to working I love watching movies, going to the gym, traveling and just do some fun activities with the people you love!
I’ve a collaboration with a great supplement brand in Europe: BODYLAB24 (www.bodylab.nl), they mainly are active in Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, etc.
They help me with my supplementation and I return and help them promote their products and help people with questions about supplements, training, etc.
People can buy their products with my discount code ‘KEVIN25’, so they get 25% off at the checkout. I believe training regularly with the combination of proper nutrition and supplementation where needed, are the key to a healthy and fit lifestyle.
⏱ Describe a typical day of training
I always train when I’m at work, that means from Monday till Friday, plus there can be an extra session in the weekend. So between 5-7 times per week I try to get in the gym.
If my body feels really exhausted (combination of sleep, work, training), I try to take a rest day on Sunday.
The key for muscle growth is muscle stimulation, so I try to mix my workout splits every 6 weeks or so.
This can vary from upper-lower splits, push-pull-legs to chest-arms/back-shoulders/legs, etc. Possibilities are endless.
A good workout means efficiency: so max 60-90min, respect your rest periods and get it done. For me this is no cardio – just strength training.
In my fitness bag I make sure I have some lifting straps for when I’m deadlifting, a good belt for when I go to my topsets on squats and occasionally wrist straps for heavy push movements.
My program written down on paper (yes I’m old school) and an Apple watch to track my workout, rest periods, etc.
Post-workout nutrition is very important: you have to provide your ‘damaged’ muscles with the right nutrition – for me these are proteins and carbohydrates.
Protein intake comes from Bodylab24 Whey Protein Isolate and for carbohydrates I simply use Bodylab24 Maltodextrin during workout and some fruit with fast sugars afterwards.
👊 How do you keep going and push harder?
Training for me is my anchor: it’s an outlet for energy / stress reliever and a great break between work for me.
In addition to letting your body get physically ‘be damaged’ for an hour, there is a great discharge and relaxation for me.
Don’t look at training and fitness as something that HAS to be done, let it become part of your routine and it just becomes a habit.
A common mistake is that people continuously do the same thing over and over in the gym. There is no more challenge, progress stops and they get bored.
That’s why switching your training routine once in a while is so important – if you lack the experience or knowledge, a personal trainer can be a great help.
🏆 How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
I’m in week 3 of quarantine, so pushing myself to keep training – this is now under the form of home workouts with a set of dumbells or TRX ropes – becomes more challenging.
I want to focus on my career and expanding my knowledge as far as possible in the first few years. After my Master in Rehabilitation Sciences and Physiotherapy, I got my NASM Personal Trainer’s certificate.
I followed some courses on strength training, nutrition, manual therapy and I’m currently doing an osteopathic course on soft tissue techniques and manipulations. So I’m interested what the future might hold and I’m just trying to be the best version of myself.
I might be planning on competing one day, just to experience it for myself. So who knows what might come 😉
🤕 How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
As I told previously post workout nutrients are very important. Next to that I try to foam roll once in a while, but I must admit that I should do it more often.
If you feel really tired or your body hurts, a rest day can definitely help.
People underestimate the power of sleep. I know it’s hypocrite to preach about proper sleeping duration if you don’t do it yourself, but I know the negative impacts on your training (strength loss, not recovering fast enough, …).
🍎 How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
I’m someone who must have some structure in his diet, so that means counting calories and eating the same stuff for a few days (just to make meal prepping easier).
Currently around 4k on rest days and 4.5k on training days (shout out to those hard-gainers and fast metabolism guys!).
Macro’s are calculated within my calories, but I find calories in vs calories out much more important than counting macros.
I try to eat very strict on weekdays (this means meal prepping in the weekend), so I can be a little bit more flexible in the weekend with my diet.
If I go out to eat, I simply skip some meals on my diet program and try to enjoy my meal without regrets. Diet is about finding balance!
👍 What has inspired and motivated you?
I’ve always had an interest in the human body. Training (speed, strength, power, …) and rehabilitation were two subjects that really drew me closer to the subject – that’s why I became a physical therapist.
Fitness for me was a logical addition to my work, it makes it easier to understand and teach training exercises if you’ve experienced it yourself.
I train 95% of the time alone, between my work. In the weekend alone or with a friend. A must have for me are my wireless headphones. Music really lets my mind focus on the training itself, without thinking about other stuff.
A fitness or bodybuilding documentary really helps me refuel my motivation, so I advise people to do the same when they’re not motivated anymore or when they’ve lost their way in the fitness world.
✏️ Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
Try to stick to the basics, don’t do fancy stuff you just saw on YouTube. People see jacked guys doing this or that and preaching this is the way to get it done, so they simply copy.
What they don’t understand is that their body is not the same as theirs. So try sticking to compound movements.
Lots of young guys combine fitness with a sport like soccer or basketball. My advice don’t use your primary muscle groups 24-48hours before your game day. E.g. no legday or shoulders when you got a basketball game the day after.
🤝 Are you taking on clients right now?
I mostly work as a sport-physiotherapist, but do gen-pop personal training too. I got a few advanced clients who want to train on their next level, so that’s fun.
I think the first few weeks after the covid restrictions will be a little bit more quiet. People will probably be worried to get out and start their rehabilitation or training again.
📝 Where can we learn more about you?
I’m on Instagram @kevinlukarski.