Teenage bodybuilder celebrates winning streak
A teenage bodybuilder is celebrating after winning a run of competitions.
Brad Willis, 17, took up the sport aged just 15, and has gone on to take championship titles at home and abroad.
The personal training student from Cleadon Village says he first got into bodybuilding when looking for a new challenge after giving up football.
Brad, who also works as a part-time engineer, said: “It is a lifestyle.
“I am in the gym six days a week, at either Powerhouse Gym in South Shields or Vision Gym in Gateshead, where I do a mix of light and heavy weights. “I played football for four years, but I started bodybuilding. At first I was just training after school, but then I met a guy in the gym who was competing. “I asked if I could watch him in a competition and decided that it was just something that I wanted to do, so I started taking training a bit more seriously.”
Brad entered his first competition - Mr County Durham - in May last year, where he won the tile and qualified for Mr Britain.
There, he won his age category and went on to win the overall junior title - ahead of under-18, 21 and 24 age categories.
Then in October, Brad travelled to Rome to compete in the Junior British and World Championship - taking first place in the under-21s category.
He added: “In the competitions I have to pose on stage in front of a panel of judges who are former bodybuilders, who judge you on factors including condition and symmetry. “As part of my training I eat six meals a day, consisting of chicken, eggs, potatoes and meat.
“Now I am working towards competing in the Junior Mr England competition in Manchester in October, which will be the qualifier to enter Junior Mr Universe in Birmingham.”