My story part 1 – Choosing to change


So I wanted to write about my story and how I have got to where I am now but I wanted to do it in parts. I thought it would be good to do it in stages as that’s how I managed to do it one goal at a time.

I would just like to start by saying this was a hard blog for me to post, I cant really put into words why. I suppose its because I feel like I am putting out there how I have felt for years but kept hidden.

So let’s go back to before I changed I was living on a diet of unhealthy food you name it I ate it. On top of that was drinking and smoking a lot and not living a particularly active life. But my issue was I didn’t want to change, I would wake up coughing in the morning and know I needed to stop smoking but I didn’t. I would also hate the way my body looked and would never let myself be seen without  a top on.

It became a vicious cycle to be honest of self abuse that I always put an icing on to hide it and try to lock it away. Then there were those moments in my life in which it was brought to the forefront and I was forced to deal with it and what to do, laugh it off? run away? get angry?

There are two such situations in my life that stick with me in which this happened and both I laughed off but they cut deep.

The first was at my wedding  when the best man made the joke I had a gold card to Dominoes it went down a storm with the audience. Because that was how people saw me, they saw me like this because that’s how I was. I pretty much lived off the stuff, I don’t blame my best man for making the joke as the problem was me with myself. In fact his speech was cracking and I really enjoyed it and the day.

The second was one night at the pub, I had gone out with my mates and was wearing some new swagger feeling really good about myself. I was wearing a tight t-shirt and one of my mates walked into the pub looked at me and said ‘Look at the tits on you mate’, to which everyone laughed and I tried to laugh along to hide my embarrassment. This really hurt and after this I made sure all clothes I bought were baggy, I would also always keep my coat on.

So this is where you expect me to say this caused me to change, I went to the gym and changed the way I ate and look at me now!  Well I didn’t it drove me into a cycle of eating and drinking more, then lying to myself that I was happy the way I was. Round and Round we go!

Now there were times I would decide I needed to sort myself out and would plan to diet or find a quick fix. I even remember ordering diet pills off the internet and taking them. I didn’t even know what was in them and I was taking them, talk about dangerous.

Then there was Weight Watchers my wife got me to go and I told myself ‘this time I am going to do it’. We went to the groups and weighed ourselves, followed the plan that was explained to us. But I sabotaged this and lied to myself, saving points to drink beer celebrating by buying myself takeaways. Guess what, it didn’t work for me! Funny that, so I blamed Weight Watchers its crap it’s designed to fail etc…. The one place I did not look was in the mirror because I really knew it was me.

I know it was bad when I got to a point that I hid my eating, at the time I was commuting quite a distance and on the way home from work I would go to McDonalds drive through. I would order a Big Mac, Double Cheese Burger, Fries and 20 nuggets. Then I would eat them on the journey home and once back have my dinner.

Simply you have to want the change to make it happen pure and simple. There is no quick fix it’s hard work and its emotional so if your not on the train to change it isn’t going to happen for you. I was never in the state to make the change.

Now I didn’t change everything in one go, first I stopped smoking. Here was another habit I had continually tried to quit but had failed. I had tried everything I even remember wearing nicotine patches and then still smoking with them on, amazing!

So what led me to stop smoking?

Well in 2008 we had an addition to our family a beautiful baby boy. Overnight I just stopped smoking yes I faltered a couple of times on the way but I made the change. I did this because I cared about my new born child and the affect my smoking would have on him. I got on the train to change and that’s what mattered.

Now as my son got older my wife and I would take him out and try to give him all the experiences parents do with their kids. My issues now started to affect my family life. My wife would take my son swimming and I wouldn’t participate as I couldn’t think of anything worse than having to strip down in front of other people.

We were then blessed with a second child a little girl during this pregnancy my wife was at risk due to being overweight and had to be monitored. This baby girl was soon followed by a third baby another little boy. (We stopped there, well for now) After this my wife asked me if I would try Slimming World with her as she wanted to lose weight.

This time I was on the train to change as I now truly wanted to change to help my wife and to be an example to my children. I wanted to go swimming with them, play sports with them and I was tired of the self loathing. So we started Slimming World and we really went for it. What Slimming World did for me was to firstly give me a food education and secondly make me look in the mirror and deal with my relationship towards food.

I addressed why I ate, mainly to get that quick fix to make myself feel better, but it didn’t last and was the reason where I was. I realised my self loathing and low confidence caused me to eat and as such I was an emotional eater. I learnt that if I ate the right types of food I could eat more and in proportion there was no reason I couldn’t have what I wanted.

As a result I started to lose weight and started to feel good about myself as I was finally addressing these issues I had lived with for years. I was working towards a new me, plus my wife and I were doing it together picking one another up when we fell off the wagon. Eventually eating normally became the norm and those gorges on chip sticks (I love those) stopped.

I managed to break the cycle of self loathing and abuse and enter a new cycle healthy eating and control.

Now something happened that I hadn’t expected, as a youngster I was a good rugby player and I decided with my new found me and confidence I would go back to it. I mentioned it to my wife and she told me to go for it so I called my local rugby club Eastleigh and they said come on down.


My next blog will cover this part of my journey.

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