A bodybuilder who has trained for 30 years is thrilled after winning two categories - in his first ever competition.

Fitness instructor Simon Newton, 49, of Hexham, will compete in the IBFA British Final BodyBuilding finals after winning his category in the IBFA Mr and Miss Cumbria show in Cumbria.

Although he is pleased with his win in Cumbria, it was not something Simon had planned to do this year.

"I did not think I would place but now I am really excited about the final," he said.

"I loved it on stage.

"I have trained for 30 years but I have never done a bodybuilding competition before until three weeks ago.

"The opportunity came about when two guys in the bodybuilding federations said I should compete.

"I then had a lot of people pushing me to do and believing in me - so I decided to do it."

To help prepare himself for the competition, Simon used his knowledge and help from his extra help from professionals.

"As a fitness instructor I stuck to the training I have learned over the years," he said.

"I then had a coach to help with my diet as I wanted to get in the best shape I have ever been in for my 50th this year.

"I could not have done it without my fiance Jade for her support and prepping all my meals every two hours and Ryan Wade and Kevin Welsh for pushing me to go for it."

After all the training, Simon won first place in the first-timers tall class and athletics over 45.

He will now go on to the British finals which will take place at Fed brewery in Gateshead on Sunday, June 12.

Simon is also offering advice to those interested in any competitions or getting into fitness.

He adds: "Come down to No Limits gym in Hexham. I would be happy to talk to anybody wanting advice on health and fitness.

"It's never too late to get into fitness."