Transformations – Will Kinash

Welcome to another installment of our TRANSFORMATIONS series! This week we hear the inspiring (and hilarious) account of Will Kinash’s personal fitness journey. The self-professed “Mayor of Kerrisdale” takes us through his last 3 months at Yard Athletics, and the gains he’s made in strength, endurance and overall body composition.

We love stories like these, so send them in as we would love to feature you!

Without further adieu, Mr. Will Kinash…


Dear Yard,

When Ilan first asked me to write a blog post for Yard Athletics, I must admit I was a little apprehensive. I don’t hack darts, drink craft beer, set trends or wear frames, so I wasn’t sure I fit the mold of your typical Vancouver blogger. But after doing a little research on the Internet and finding out Bill Baker operates a contemporary art blog?? ( – tell him I sent you for a 15% discount), the barrier to entry seemed minimal, so I decided to give it a shot.

My journey to the Yard started about three months ago. I vividly remember my first workout because about five minutes in I wanted to puke, and legitimately thought about leaving and deleting Ilan’s number from my phone. Ilan had put me in a group session with two of the fittest girls I have ever met, both of whom looked like professional CrossFit athletes that I swear never took breaks. I made it to about the 40-minute mark before lying on the ground in pain for the last 20 minutes. I went home and immediately to bed. After a few days contemplating never working out again, I eventually pulled myself together and realized that for the past few years, I probably wasn’t pushing myself anywhere near my full potential in the gym.

I have always been in decent shape, but I was one of those guys that did the “beach workout.” For those who aren’t familiar with that type of workout split, it’s basically an endless rotation of chest, biceps, shoulders and snap chat selfies. As a result, you lack any type of symmetry with minimal back and leg development. After a few more days of procrastination I came to the conclusion it’s about time I switched things up, so I purchased a 1-on-1 package with Ilan. The reason I opted for the 1-on-1 package is because I felt I lacked some of the fundamentals and proper technique in many of my compound lifts.

**If you haven’t done much deadlifting or squatting, I recommend doing 1-on-1’s first. The additional cost is totally worth it, and your body will thank you for it**

For the first month of training, we almost exclusively focused on building my back and legs. During that time, Ilan and I worked on perfecting the form of my squat and deadlift. Although I have always known the importance of those exercises, until actually performing them on a regular basis you don’t realize the impact they can have on the overall strength of your frame. Ilan ensured these movements were the fundamentals of our workouts, and then added on auxiliary exercises as needed.

At this point I could go in-depth about the wealth of knowledge Ilan has as a trainer, but this is already getting too long and I still need to talk about my two-month transformation. To speed things up, please take a scroll through his Instagram page. The guy practices what he preaches, and whenever I am looking to learn something new I want the person teaching me to be fully embraced in their specific field of expertise. For Ilan, it is very evident that it is strength and conditioning. I think it’s also important to mention, Ilan did abandon me one month into the contest to chase baguettes in France with his better half. During that time I worked
out with Shawzo, and I must admit he is the perfect compliment to Ilan, bringing that same wealth of knowledge but with a different variety to his workouts. I have never worked out with Jocelyn, but I have heard nothing but great things.

Anyhoo, back to my two month transformation…

    BEFORE                                              AFTER

I will keep this section relatively short because during the two months, I didn’t do anything fancy. I worked out 3-4 days per week; once at The Yard and the rest at my local gym. The Yard workouts were focused more on compound lifts, with the other days being more body part specific (I did very minimal cardio). As for the nutrition, I wanted to lose fat, so I opted for ketogenic (keto) diet. If you are living under a rock and have not heard of keto, here is a quick definition which I stole from Google: The ketogenic diet is a low carb, moderate protein, high fat diet which puts the body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. In layman’s terms, instead of using carbs for energy, you use fat. Now, I’m not one of those people who weighs my food or does any sort of tracking, but my energy levels felt good
throughout the whole time. I should mention the first 5 days or so absolutely suck as you have really low energy while your body adjusts to burning fat for fuel.

To ensure I adhered to the diet, I stuck mainly to whole foods. By whole foods, I mean the actual store; I would hit up their salad bar about 5 days a week. If you know how to navigate a salad bar, you can get out of there with out dropping serious $$$. Please DM for tips. All my carbs would come from vegetables; I didn’t eat any grains, rice or carb heavy foods. I tried to keep my protein to about 1g/lb of body weight and I didn’t measure my fat intake, but I ate lot of eggs, fatty meats and various oils. My supplement routine was comprised of a bunch of random horse size pills that a jacked and extremely tanned 50 year old at Popeye’s sold to me. To save you money and bloating, I will outline the ones that I think actually work.

  • Multi Vitamin
  • Branch Chain Amino Acid’s (BCAA’s),
  • Probiotic
  • ZMA
  • Melatonin.

Dr Google will explain what each of them does for you. In full confidence, I can’t even say those five supplements have any quantitative benefit, but the
latter two definitely put you right to sleep. **My legal team has advised me to insert a disclosure that I am not a doctor and please consult a licensed physician before taking any supplements**. Disclosures aside, I was able to lose around 12 pounds. I didn’t experience any noticeable strength or muscle loss. I believe keeping the protein high throughout had an impact on helping preserve muscle. In short, the last two months was a breeze, and I am very happy with my results. The Yard has built up a great fitness community in Vancouver, and it’s easy to stay motivated when you know Ilan is going to plaster you working out all over the internet!

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