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The Small Changes That Helped Me Lose 70 Pounds in 5 Months


By Philip Ellis
Mon, March 7, 2022
Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned

Tim Shanley, 32, from Sydney... and I am a product manager in the Superannuation industry

I got married in late 2019 and was in relatively good shape. After coming back from my honeymoon my wife and I bought our first home together and I was on cloud nine. Then Covid hit in early 2020, and I started to work from home full-time. While I was still on a mental high, I was enjoying myself a little bit too much, and as a result my exercise and fitness regime took a back seat with gyms being closed, and so did my diet. I lost all structure and routine in my life and ended up over-eating, drinking too much alcohol, and pretty much stopped exercising.

At my heaviest I tipped the scales at 113 kgs (249 pounds). I had lost all of my confidence, I was not feeling good about myself both mentally and physically, and I was starting to get concerned about my overall health and wellbeing from things such as elevated blood pressure, increased stress, trouble sleeping, and irritability. I was not happy, and was seeking joy artificially from comforts such as alcohol and food.

Seeing myself in a photo from a wedding in late 2020 was my lightbulb moment. I didn't like what I saw: I couldn't accept the fact I had let myself go so much, and felt embarrassed. I realised I needed to make a change and make a change fast, so I reached out to the professionals to help me pull my finger out! I contacted Ultimate Performance in Sydney in late 2020 with the intention of starting 2021 fresh with a new mindset and with some big goals to get my life back on track.

My program consisted of four workouts a week, two with my trainer and two by myself, which were a combination of full body high intensity, resistance training and heavy weight workouts. I also walked between a minimum of 15,000 to 20,000 steps a day every day. My program was 20 weeks long in total, and my target was to get down to 10 percent bodyfat.

When I started the program, my thought process and attitude towards my diet completely changed and allowed me to take more accountability for what I was putting into my body and kept me honest. I started to watch what I was eating more closely though understanding macros, meal timing and nutrition.

My trainer Saskia believed in me from day one. She gave me the motivation and encouragement needed to achieve my goals and equipped me with the tools to push myself to places I didn't think I could go. She was very unselfish with her knowledge on health and fitness and was constantly feeding me information about how to train correctly, how to diet and understand nutrition, how to listen to my body and how to be confident and positive!

Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned

I lost a total of 33 kgs (73 pounds) in 20 weeks and hit 10 percent body fat by the end of the journey which was one of my main goals. It was a long grind, but all worth it in the end and I couldn't have been happier. The physical results speak for themselves, however it's the things you can't see that I was more satisfied with, such as regaining my confidence, lowering blood pressure, improving my quality of sleep, and just having overall better and more consistent moods. Now I go to bed happy and wake up happy!

You don't need to have a background in strength training or weights to be able to achieve your health and fitness goals. I think it all comes down to attitude, discipline and commitment - if you have these three things, plus a positive mindset, most of the battle is already won. While the physical elements are tough, they are short lived, whereas the mental battle of sticking to a diet and routine is constant, but if you are able to hit small goals, your overall long term goals will be easier to achieve.

Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned
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