Mark Smith served for 10 years as a soldier, but sadly, he suffered a severe injury during a live fire training accident.
After a period of rehabilitation, he got his life back on track through the wonderful world of bodybuilding.
This is his story.
First, tell us a bit about yourself
I served 10 years as an Infantry Soldier with 1st Bn Grenadier Guards and reached rank of Lance Sergeant. I served in Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Jamaica, Kenya, Falklands and Canada.
I was involved in a live firing training accident in Canada in 2011. I suffered several gunshot wounds, resulting in the loss of my anterior deltoid and my right leg. Since then I have become a qualified football coach, boxing coach and a personal trainer.
How did you get into disability bodybuilding?
I read about a young lad with cerebral palsy who had competed in the Hercules Olympia and his story inspired me to get into the sport myself.
What does your workout schedule look like over a week?
I train Monday to Saturday:
Mon: Train left leg
Tues: Chest, shoulders and triceps
Wed: Core – back, biceps, forearms and traps
Then repeat for Thur, Fri and Sat.
I also do two lots of cardio a day during my cutting phase. I’m restricted because of my leg, so I walk with a few layers on to get a good sweat on!
How does your training differ from a non disability competitor?
I struggle with squats due to my leg, and also with the shoulder press due to my deltoid. My cardio is a bit slower than most peoples too!
What’s your diet like?
At the moment I am in the run up to my first competition. I’m having oats in the morning, 3 whey protein isolate shakes a day and Turkey & spinach 5 times a day, every 3 hours.
When are you competing
I’m competing at the Pure Elite Comp on Sunday 2nd November, at the Winter Gardens in Margate.
What is your comp prep like?
This is my first competition, so I haven’t really got any pre-stage rituals yet. But, I have been practicing holding my poses and going through my routine a lot.
How can disabled people get into disabled bodybuilding?
I have set up a Facebook page to make it easy for those with disabilities to get involved, with links for registering, dates, locations, entry fees, categories.
And finally..who is your bodybuilding idol?
Has to be Arnold Schwarzenegger for me. His waistline is much more impressive than those of today. My favourite current day bodybuilder is Dennis Wolf.