Nottingham student finishes third in Mr University

We spoke to Petros Djakouris, the Notts second-year recently named the third buffest student in the UK

When you think of the student lifestyle, you tend to picture laziness, alcohol and obscene amounts of sleep, right?

Well, meet Petros Djakouris, a Nottingham student who has embraced discipline, hard work and some serious training in order to bust the student stereotype and finish third in the first ever Mr University fitness competition.


Petros, a second year Economics student, told The Tab what it takes to be in such good shape and what sacrifices he has had to make in order to push his body to the limits each and every day.

Having practiced Taekwondo for the last ten years and lifted weights for the last two, Petros’ best friend encouraged him into entering the competition this year.

“I take no days off,” he said. “Fasted high intensity interval cardio and hardcore ab sessions are just some of the techniques I use to constantly improve my physique. I usually hit the gym four times a week while my cardio sessions consist mostly of four to six hours of taekwondo sessions per week.”

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Forget a cheeky pint at the pub or straying into the smoking area on a night out. As Petros knows, if you want to be in the best shape possible, you’ve got to fully commit yourself to sleeping well and eating right.

“Working out makes no sense if you are not giving your body what it needs in terms of diet and sleep. I have never smoked a cigarette and I rarely drink alcohol but always manage to have a great time while being sober.”

Despite the sacrifices, Petros said that his routine has “become a way of life which I cannot imagine myself without. I believe that nothing can replace hard work and sweat in order to achieve any goal in life.”

A black belt in Taekwondo, he initially never considered entering this kind of competition, but “after devoting so much into something that you love, there comes a time when you want to see your hard work pay off.”

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Despite coming up against some of the country’s buffest students, Petros approached the weekend feeling prepared and confident.

“If I was not hopeful of winning, I would stay home and watch it on my laptop. The past month of intense dieting and all of the hard work I have put in would have made no sense if I was not determined to win this thing. In order for others to believe in you, you must first believe in yourself.”

Check out some of the competitors (male and female) from other universities here.