We’re a bodybuilding family and we love it… but our 11-year-old son is the star – he is going to be ‘the new Arnie’ | The Sun

A BODYBUILDING family have wowed Brits with their massive guns – but it is their 11-year-old son who is destined to become the "new Arnie".

Mum-of-four Kerry MacDonald, 43, only set foot in a gym for the first time in April 2021, but has already become a world champion.

Her youngest son Aaron, 11, has already become an avid muscle head – despite not even starting weight training yet.

But his budding talent has led one company to offer him a sponsorship, as he "might be the next Arnold Schwarzenegger."

The bodybuilding family also includes his brother Oliver, 14, who hits the gym almost every day of the week.

Their dad, Steven Johnston, 47, first urged Kerry to try bodybuilding when the couple started going out 18 years ago, but she was too shy.


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Now, Steven keeps her strict training regime on the rails as she continues to win numerous competitions.

But it wasn't Steven that got her into it – as she was inspired to take up lifting by a pal who won Miss Cumbria.

Kerry, who works as a cleaner, got diagnosed with ADHD a month after she began doing weight training, but and said pumping up helps her focus.

She said having the support of her family and making them proud is the best part, as well as having shared interest – and slammed lazy assumptions that she uses steroids.

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Kerry said: "After lockdown I joined the gym and that was it, I've got a good physique for it.

"I've always been a very active mum but I haven't done athletics since being 13.

"For years I couldn't ever complete anything, I started hairdresser training and left because I couldn't retain information.

"I could do the practical stuff, but I never gained any qualifications.

"With ADHD you are grieving for what you could have achieved, but the gym really helps me.

"I think my story shows anybody can achieve anything, just give it a go.

"That feeling of being proud of yourself is such a nice feeling."

Having your family be proud of you is much nicer than any world championship or glam stuff

The mum added that her newfound lifestyle has rekindled her marriage through their shared love of the gym.

"We go to the gym together, we eat together, we plan the shows together," she added.

"It annoys me that people assume I'm on steroids, I go to the gym four or five times a week, I eat clean – people just make their own assumptions.

"I have rest days and I get enough sleep, I go to bed at 10pm and am up at 6am.

"I'm just naturally built to do this, I'm a genetic freak.

"This is just the way that my body has responded to the exercise, the food, and rest."

In only 10 weeks, Kerry was racking up trophies on her way to winning the PCA bodybuilding world championships earlier this year.

Her success has inspired the rest of her family to hit the gym too – with Aaron now becoming obsessed with the hardcore lifting lifestyle as well.


Although his parents think he is too young to start training, he has still earned a sponsorship deal – and even got himself a tan and trunks to go on stage, with no encouragement.

Kerry said: "Just a few weeks ago he got up on stage and performed a bodybuilding routine.

"He got a tan and trunks. He was getting the crowd going and they were cheering.

"You can't make kids do that.

"Steven did it years ago so we had the photos around the house and Aaron used to look at the photos and copy the poses.

"My youngest hasn't missed a show, he was saying 'I want to travel around the world with you'.

"He goes round speaking to the bodybuilders, he sent one a message saying 'you weren't looking your best, you would have won if you'd looked like you did at another competition'.

"The guy sent him a message back saying 'you've inspired me'. People say to me 'my god, your son'.

"I've got a bikini maker who has offered to sponsor him, he probably will do bodybuilding in future.

"He might be the next Arnold Schwarzenegger.

"Aaron has really benefited from the people he has met, he's got so much confidence.

"It's family time for us, we travel around going to shows.

"It's not for financial gain, it's a passion and we are enjoying doing it as a family."

The mum-of-four added that her bodybuilding lifestyle has helped her mental health, and says she ignores the critics that could come with her success.

"I got four regional title wins in 10 weeks, a British title, gold, silver and World title – I've got trophies and tiaras.

"It seems impossible to do it in such a short space of time.

"I know there are some men who wouldn't want their wife posing in a bikini, but Steven loves it.

"I can hear him shouting 'keep it tight' – he doesn't let me give in."

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