The Back Story
‘A Large Caramel Macchiato and a Skinny muffin please’ I would bark at the Starbucks Barrista as I ordered my routine breakfast in the not too distant past.
Lunch on the road wasn’t much better. A tub of sushi followed by a Ginsters pasty and worse still on a Friday night as I often played rugby the following day I would consume a large Dominoes pizza washed down with just the one bottle of a Campo Viejo Rioja.
(Don’t judge me red wine is good for the heart….so they say!)
The sad thing is I thought I was being healthy.
I am far from being a nutritionalist but it turns out ‘Skinny’ products don’t make you ‘Skinny’
I recall a defining moment in my ‘fat era‘ in 2008 whilst on a ‘Lads trip’ to New York spending an inordinate amount of time one evening impressing a young lady with my one liners and self-deprecating humour.
(You know one liners like ‘They say Vaseline was invented by Romans but its actually ancient grease’)
I returned from the bar after buying her an overpriced capriosca to be told by the young woman ‘ I’m sorry Skinny guys are more my type’ at which point I walked away and proceeded to cry into my pint which is code for order a kebab!
I returned home to Wales distraught and decided to take action.
The Call For Action
I had no idea where to start in regard to diet as my speciality in the kitchen at this time was scrambled eggs made with half of tub of Philadelphia cream cheese.
So I took stock and did what most men would do in a crisis and I rushed into Tesco’s and bought a copy of Men’s Health. (Ok most men would hit the pub but that would have put an end to this blog)
I ripped out the only diet plan in the magazine and followed it to the best of my ability and I can still clearly remember the content.
Breakfast – Poached eggs on toast or Porridge with blueberries
Mid morning – Plain chicken
Lunch – Jacket and plain tuna
Afternoon snack – peanut butter on rye bread
Supper – Salmon fillet with brown rice
I remember as I gagged down the 200g of plain chicken at 11am sitting in the confines of my company car thinking ‘This is fowl’ (I know I have to stop the puns) that I actually felt like I was eating far more than I had done previously.
Admittedly, I combined my new approach to diet along with starting to run. Weight began to drop off me – Eat less,move more!
Although I felt like I was eating more food I was essentially taking in less calories while feel fuller and more satisfied for longer periods.
‘Eat less, move more.’ To me its a simple message, burn more calories than you consume and you are likely to lose weight.
I must stress I am no authority on the intricacies of diet however, I know that I have lost and sustained a substantial amount of weight dropping from approximately 14 stone to 11 stone. I have also moved on from the days where I would regularly enjoy a pizza and chips sandwich (or butty if you’re Welsh like myself)
It is all too easy to over complicate diets and lets face it there have been some strange ones ranging from the 5/2, Atkins, juice diets and most recently I have been made aware of a chocolate cake for breakfast diet. A cake diet sounds incredible but seriously?
For me long term weight loss is found in making long term changes.
How much do I need to sacrifice?
The reason I have addressed diet on this particular blog is that I have been approached by a number of colleagues and friends to help out with a dietary advice.
In order to lose weight it is my view that combining a healthy, balanced diet with regular exercise will undoubtedly prompt weight loss.
Small sacrifices might have to be made along the way whether that be foregoing empty calories from alcohol, fizzy drinks, or the post run/gym work out reward. You know who you are!!
During the first year of dating my wife she asked me to accompany her on a training run as she had ambitiously entered the Great North Run having never run a half marathon before. Impressed with her determination to push herself I politely accepted the invite. However,half way through our run she convinced me to stop for some tea and cake which for me was not only a surprise but brought an entire new meaning to a ‘tempo run’ and a perfect example of how to undo all of the benefits of a good exercise regime.
My wife is actually is in fantastic physical shape however this type of behaviour is commonly indicative of those who often don’t manage to lose weight. I must add that my wife has entirely different and healthy approach to the reward aspect these days!
Remember, Eat less move more if looking to lose weight, don’t over complicate the concept.
Also remember that along the way a cheat day here and there won’t hurt as we all have to live a little.
Once you hit your weight loss target and learn to understand your body you can certainly relax a little more in your dietary approach.
These days I very much abide by the saying
‘Everything in moderation including moderation’.
Although the thought of looking like this again keeps me on the straight and narrow!
Please sign up to my blog by leaving your e-mail address and share with your fellow running/gym/weight loss friends!