‘Overweight’ survivor training for marathon drops 3st after heart attack – ‘feel alive’

Expert explains why enjoying exercise is important

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After having a terrifying heart attack in May 2021, Robert Nicholson knew he had to change something about his lifestyle for the sake of his health. Weighing in at 18st 2lb, the retired pre-operations manager who now has a stent fitted, reached his goal weight of 15st 7lb in 23 weeks.

But how did he do it?

Robert was told his cholesterol (also called LDL and non-HDL) was too high and the good cholesterol (called HDL) was low.

He was advised by medical professionals to join the WW (formerly Weight Watchers) plan after he had his operation, and he hasn’t looked back since.

Before he lost three stone, Robert admitted he struggled running distances he used to and never said “no” when it came to seconds at meal times.

However, with his wife Anne now a WW coach, Robert benefitted from accountability and the weight began to drop off.

“I was strict about portion control and tracking what I had eaten,” he said.

“I was 18st 2lb and didn’t think I was that much overweight but the height/weight charts said something different.

“It took me 23 weeks to reach my goal weight of 15 stone 7lb.”

Even when the 61-year-old was struck down with Covid, it didn’t stop him from reaching his goal.

“I used the virtual workshops to keep in touch and get the added motivation,” he explained.

“I am now maintaining my weight about 15st in combination with the WW plan, running in training for the Great North Run in September, swimming a mile twice a week and sessions at the gym once or twice a week.

“I am adjusting my meal plan to enable additional carbs to support the running in preparation for the GNR.”

With this fitness goal in mind, Robert revealed he has seen a huge difference in his energy levels since losing the weight.

“I struggled to run a couple of miles and had a long recovery time and now I can run much further and recover much quicker,” he beamed.

“I am now running 7.5 to eight miles in the build up of my training.”

He added: “I am not as tired or lethargic as I used to be and I feel more alive.

“Finding clothes that fit comfortably has been so gratifying and getting compliments on my weight loss has also helped greatly.”

Whereas Robert would usually have opted for a sugary cereal, toast, butter and jam or chocolate spread for breakfast, now he chooses a much healthy option.

His daily menu now consists of:

Breakfast

Bran Flakes or porridge

Wholewheat bread toasted (no butter)

Low fat chocolate spread or sugar free jam.

Lunch

Low fat cheese or wafer ham or baked potato

Zero fat yoghurt

Fruit

WW protein bar.

Dinner

Lean beef or chicken breasts

Vegetables

Potato

Sugar free jelly

Snacks – (not as frequently)

WW crisps

Mixed unsalted nuts

Fruit

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