So this was me as a young lad, out on the town most nights and waking up with a sudden jolt, my body’s way of saving me from ruining my Ninja Turtles duvet with a quick dash to the bathroom. Drinking with friends was fun! So was all the food too. Unfortunately it catches up with you.
Around The Middle
Fast forward a few years and it certainly did catch up with me, as you can see. I still loved my pints of beer, my pies, my chips, and my pizza – to which I’d dedicated a speed dial number on my phone. I might have seemed like I was happy whilst I was eating and drinking, and I was in the moment, but that was only a small snapshot of my day. The rest of the day was far from positive. It wasn’t just superficial weight gain that was the problem. It was feeling lethargic, having horrible skin, taking sick days from work because of my poor immune system, lacking self-confidence, low self-belief and not feeling attractive enough to have a girlfriend. I went to see my Doctor as I was feeling unwell and he told me I had the heart of a 60 year old…prescribed me heart medication of which a side effect was DEATH! I took them once but after an embarrassing event at the bus stop (which I won’t describe) I decided not to continue with the pills.
After battling with, let’s say “darker thoughts”, I crawled up out of my dark pit of despair and decided to not accept what I’d become. I started going to the gym, and began to eat better foods. I tried really hard but it felt futile – it was such hard work and I didn’t see the results I wanted, despite following the information in various men’s fitness magazines. After going in circles for a long time and talking the talk, but not walking the walk, it would have been easy to give up because I didn’t see the point in trying. Knowing that ‘giving up’ would see me fall back down to the place I’d worked so hard to break free of, I put all of my time and energy into properly researching evidence based information as to how I could get the body I’ve always wanted. For me it felt like it would open up a whole new world of possibilities that I’d been missing all of these years and it was all within my grasp if I worked hard enough. I scoured the forums, read articles, watched videos, talked to fitness pro’s, and then I put what I had learnt into practice.
Six days a week of a mix of strength training, hypertrophy training and cardio. An extremely strict ketogenic diet, with total consistency and extreme focus. I stopped seeing friends to avoid temptation, and if I did go out on a special occasion I’d take a protein shake and drink black coffee. Nothing could stop me from achieving my goal. And it paid off, I looked amazing! It showed me what I was capable of when I put 100% effort into my goal, it made me believe pretty much anything is possible if you try hard enough.
Many people see exercise as superficial but this is far from the truth. At 25% body fat I didn’t look or feel attractive or comfortable in my clothes, but after I reduced my body fat down to 12.1% (the .1 is important to me) everything changed. I could see my six pack for the first time in my life! I felt comfortable in my clothes and attractive, but there were many other changes I experienced from exercising: Drive, focus, energy, determination, dedication, discipline, passion, confidence, self-respect. Not so superficial after all hey? I changed my body and my mind.
Could I maintain that lifestyle that got me into the best shape of my life? Not if I wanted healthy relationships, experiences and to not feel deprived. The answer was learning new ways of being consistent with what I ate and how much I moved every day. I’m not as “ripped” as I once was, but that’s OK. I don’t want to make the required sacrifices for 6 pack abs because it’s less important to me today. What is important to me now is my health and my relationships with my wife, child, family and friends.
After helping a friend get into her wedding dress, I then decided I wanted to give other people the knowledge and the techniques I’d developed over the years to make improvements to their lives. I became qualified as Level 2 gym instructor and then a Level 3 Personal Trainer. I’m constantly learning and evolving my methods to deliver the most optimal and achievable strategies for my clients. I will not give up on you even if you’ve given up on yourself!
What matters to me most of all is, can I coach a client to live a happier, healthier life? It’s not always about six pack abs. For some, being able to play with their children without getting out of breath or not being able to bend down to pick them up is the most important motivator for change. For others, it may be because they don’t feel attractive in their clothes and want to improve their body confidence. Whatever your reason for change, I will work with you to make it a reality. I honestly believe it’ll be the best decision that you’ve ever made for yourself.
*I cannot guarantee the same results for you as it will vary on an individual basis