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Bodybuilder credits help of Inverness gym in helping him to earn coveted place in finals of major British competition

By Alasdair Fraser

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Steve Wallace (right) with Gym 300's Tom Ashmole.
Steve Wallace (right) with Gym 300's Tom Ashmole.

A bodybuilder is crediting the generous help of an Inverness gym during lockdown for success in reaching a major British finals.

Steve Wallace (35), who trains at Gym 300 in Carsegate Road, took second place in the smaller height category at the recent Fit X Federation contest in Leeds.

His stunning display earned him a coveted invitation to the Liverpool finals in September with what is one of the UK’s biggest bodybuilding federations.

But Mr Wallace, who travels from Forres to train, insisted the triumph would have been impossible without the generous help of Gym 300 owner Tom Ashmole.

As all sports facilities shut, the gym loaned equipment to enable Mr Wallace to keep body – and mind – in good shape.

Steve Wallace at his qualifier.
Steve Wallace at his qualifier.

The competitor, now a personal trainer and fitness coach, said: "I just love to compete. I feel it benefits me so much. I’m a big believer in using exercise to improve your mental health.

"That’s a huge consideration right now. In lockdown, with so much negative going on, it gave me focus, purpose and a positive outlook.

"Since I first walked into Gym 300 and met the owner Tom Ashmole, he has shown me nothing but support.

"I told him my goals. He taught me how to train properly. During lockdown, he provided me with equipment as he knew how important it was to me.

"What I want to do now is help as many people as I can, particularly with mental health, and show them how much help fitness can be."

Thrilled with qualification, Mr Wallace added: "The idea was just to bring my best package and compete.

"There is no weight limit, but you want to take as much body-fat off as possible to bring out the detail. You’re really trying to create an illusion. I look at it almost as an art form.

"FitX do everything for the athlete, so I was delighted to qualify for the finals."

The aim now is to go to Liverpool and win, helped by highly-rated new ‘posing’ coach Andy Scott.

Mr Wallace, primarily coached by Grimsby-based Matt Tofton, stressed: "I feel I can do that, absolutely."

Related story: Highland gyms told to close during busiest time

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