I started out as an active person, as a child growing up in a village on the outskirts of Cambridge I remember always playing outside and going to the play ground with my friends and just being a child. We moved to rural Norfolk when I was 6 or 7 years old and that was to a house with 10 acres of land so it was a life of being outdoors and activity. Dogs to walk a river to swim in along with land to look after so always on the move.
I wasn’t really sporty but I did like to swim and canoe and at these I was quite good at. I held the record at the High school for the 50 meters freestyle for quite a number of years!
I joined the Air Force when I was just 16 years old and as I was an apprentice I had 3 years training and that involved a great deal of sports and fitness doing all sorts of sports and this built onto my basic levels of fitness. Once out of training the sports dropped off but I did still swim and had trials to swim for Strike Command and cycle to and from work as I didn’t learn to drive for a few years!
So I was always active and burning off the calories until that is I learnt to drive and changed my job! I started out as a service engineer back in 1989 and in those days it was all about working hard and playing hard too. Plenty of food and a great deal of beer too! However this didn’t really affect my weight as I was working really hard and could maintain my weight and I was smoking too at that time.
The big change was when I stopped working away and became a resident engineer and just started to spend more time sat in a car and home and less time at actual work. I remember the first time a customer said to me “Oh you’ve put on a bit of weight” I had gone up to 13 stone by then. I didn’t really pile up the weight until I got into my late 40s I guess and I just got larger and larger without really noticing.
The biggest I got to was after COVID struck and I had to spend quite a few trips away and had nothing to do but eat and sleep in hotels and after a trip in Ireland where I spent 3 weeks eating rather large meals and drinking many pint of Guinness! I got home after that trip and had to make a video for a friends birthday. My wife and I sat down and did the video and we watched it back. I was shocked to say the least! I just sat there and said “Is that me?” I saw a really old and fat man staring back at me and I didn’t look happy although I was trying to look it. That is when I said to myself “No more, I’m going to change.”
The big question was how was I going to do it?