6 years.

When I hit 30 I was 23 stone. I dropped a little when I was 31 and decided it was time to change things. I started running and eating better. What really helped was my friend, girlfriend, fiancé and now wife Sam. She made me realise anyone can run a 5k. She helped break food down to what I can manage and build from there.

In the past 6 months I’ve lost 2.5 stone in preparation for our wedding. I dropped 2 dress sizes on the Special K diet. I ate enough to get a weeks worth of female running shirts. Female. I’m a man. Stupid sexist Special K don’t offer a mans running top for some reason.

I also cut down on bread. I used to eat 3 slices for breakfast. A butty for lunch. Carbs for tea. Now I eat Special K for breakfast. Simple pork bits or chicken chunks for lunch with fruit. Then a normal nice tea. I swapped potato for sweet potato. It’s actually one of your five a day and you can still do chips.

Lastly exercise. I run and now swim. At first I couldn’t swim much. 30 mins would be exhausting. Now I can do 80 lengths.

All this isn’t massively complicated. It just takes time and patience to get used to. Naturally you won’t accept it at first. It takes time. But after 6 years I’ve dropped 7 stone.

I use a variety of apps too.

  • Myfitnesspal to track food / weight
  • Runkeeper for swimming / running
  • Fitbit for steps
  • Up also for steps as my Pebble now tracks steps 
  • Pebble for running / swimming

They all help log progress and you need to see you’re making progress or you’ll become disheartened.

Runkeeper. I’ve used it since I started running. It’s taken me from walking to a 5k to a marathon. 

Pebble. New update monitors steps in the background using Up instead of Fitbit. Up is a better platform than Fitbit. They’ve already updated their apps to use Apple’s HealthKit. Fitbit hasn’t. The Pebble also has a swimming counter app to track my lengths and shows running info when I run. It’s brilliant. The Apple Watch won’t be good for swimming.

Myfitnesspal. Scan almost any food / drink’s bar code and it adds the data to your profile. So you can see what types of food you eat. Also tracks weight. 

This post is simply to remind myself to keep going and hopefully to inspire others as I’ve been inspired. It’s not hard to get in shape. You just need to find what works for you. It took me 6 years once I started really caring about my health.