Hunk Gets Chunky: Personal Trainer Vows to Get Fat

Australian trainer "PJ" James fattens up to better understand his clients.

ByABC News
February 27, 2009, 11:09 AM

Feb. 27, 2009— -- If you can't beat 'em, get fat with 'em.

A chiseled-turned-chunky personal trainer from Australia is more than halfway to his goal of obesity, having swapped veggies for deep-fried Mars bars to better understand the overweight clients he can't seem to reach.

"All the trainers, everyone thinks I'm crazy," Paul "PJ" James told from Doherty's Gym in Melbourne.

The 32-year-old former underwear model has ballooned from about 180 pounds to 233 since last month. He has given himself until the end of March to get to his goal of 265 pounds, a weight he intends to keep for a few months.

"A lot of my clients have been skipping classes," he said of the motivation behind his burgeoning pudge. "I decided I really didn't understand what they were feeling and their emotions."

When he starts training to take the weight off, most likely sometime in July, James said he plans to take a few of his clients with him so they can lose the weight together.

James, who has been working as a personal trainer for five years, has 22 clients, a mix of people who are overweight and those who are into body-building and gaining muscle.

Doherty's, he said, is mostly a body-building gym, so he understands why his heavier clients have a hard time forcing themselves to walk through the door.

"There's a lot of muscle walking around," he said. "It's very daunting."

Allan Douglas, 26, also of Melbourne, began training with James for eight or nine months after he saw news reports about James being named "Melbourne's Hottest Hunk."

"I said, 'Well, you know how you always have to have someone to look like,'" Douglas said.

But now James is starting to look more like Douglas, who, at 5'10" and nearly 300 pounds, describes himself as "overweight."